History of Royal College launched:
Blue and gold memories live on
The launch of History of Royal College – 1985-2010 took place among a
History repeated itself at Royal College with the launch of its
second history book, capturing many milestones and facets of the college
for the present generation and also the future generation of Royalists
to cherish their school. 177 years have passed since the school, which
is now known as Royal College from its genesis as Hill Street Academy
was established. The journey has not yet seen its conclusion.
Secretary to the President,
The History of Royal College from 1835-1985 was previously chronicled
by S. S. Perera and in the recent past M.L Perera set out to complete
the legend from 1985-2010. S.S. Perera’s research and dedication of four
years resulted in the 603 page history book launched in 1986 with the
Royal College Union (RCU) initiating the chronicled recording of 150
years of priceless history.
The sequel to the legacy is a culmination of a two year research by
M.L. Perera and records all academic, sports, notable events and
numerous other activities worth recording for posterity during the
period August 1985 to December 2010. It has by no means been an easy
task and his efforts were praised and appreciated by all who understood
the difficulty to complete such a task with dedication and pride.
The event at Navarangahala was graced by Secretary to the President
Lalith Weeratunga, Chief Editor, Sunday Island, Manik De Silva,
Editor-in-Chief Sunday Observer, Dinesh Weerawansa, Editor in Chief of
The Nation, Malinda Senavirathne, the Principal of Royal College, Upali
Gunasekara and the RCU Secretary Manju Ariyaratne.
The senior deputy principal, deputy principals, past principals, vice
presidents, trustees and past secretaries of the RCU along with faculty
members and students attended the historic launch.
The occasion itself was a rare moment of history in the making when
four outstanding Royalists who created history for Royal College by
reaching the highest echelons of the profession they all belong to, were
in attendance on one platform. Specifically the senior most officer in
the Sri Lankan Administrative Service and three distinguished gentlemen
holding the highest office in the print media representing three
national English newspapers, unveiled the history that all Royalists
treasure. “This is the only time in the college history that we have
four old Royalists simultaneously heading their respective newspapers”
stated Manju Ariyaratne, RCU Secretary.
Speaking at the event the Royal College Principal Upali Gunasekara
expressed his pleasure in participating in this event.
“History has to be rewritten in every generation, because although
the past does not change the present does.
“Each generation asks new questions of the past and finds new areas
of sympathy as it re-lives different aspects of the experiences of its
He said Royal College was an exceptional institution that had
witnessed a long journey of ups and downs, adding to its character,
resilience and longevity.
He thanked the editor for undertaking a task of great magnitude and
stated that history serves to enhance one’s self-consciousness while
offering a new way to look at things.
Manju Ariyaratne, expressed his gratitude and pride to be present on
He re-iterated the history of Royal College and said Royal College
was the first public school among equals and the RCU was an institution
that exists to serve its alma-mater and ensure that it remains what it
is, it was nothing but prudent for RCU to document its history.
He thanked the author for the dedication and effort in producing a
volume of this magnitude, which spoke of the rich history, culture and
heritage of Royal College.
De Silva speaking on behalf of the three guests of honour, commended
the RCU on taking interest in fulfilling the task of concluding this
project. Lalith Weeratunge, complimented the efforts by RCU in
completing this mammoth task of enriching history.
He touched on topics such as education and skills development
together with the importance of emotional intelligence in task-making
and instilling a pride in the country.
A golden leaf in the annals of history has been turned with the
launch of “The History of Royal College” which has been tinged in
memories of Blue and Gold, which will be of value for the Royal
fraternity at large, as they recall moments that created milestones and
made history come alive for the present and future Royalists to uphold
their rich culture and traditions with pride.