Inky & Guv
Bursaries and Hardship Fund

Mar 15, 2021

Bursaries and Hardship Funding working in tandem for the benefit of Dragon School

R Keith Ingram (Inky) and Michael Gover (Guv) are names synonymous with the Dragon, fondly remembered for over thirty years since their retirement in 1989. Inky became the Dragon’s Headmaster in 1965 and was joined by Guv as Co-Headmaster from 1972. They shared a modern and progressive approach to the running of the School, championing the ethos of ‘relaxed rigour’ and carrying on the dynasty passed to them by the Lynam family.

“Guv’s greatest gift was generosity and being always happy to help the young.” Tom Gover (OD 1950), Brother of Guv

Both embodied Skipper’s mantra of ‘being extraordinary in an ordinary way’, and the Dragon remains known to this day as a first-class School whilst maintaining its distinctive and unique quirks.

Inky and Guv dedicated their adult lives to the encouragement and support of children in education, typifying all that it means to be a Dragon. Both were keen sportsmen and lovers of music, their enthusiasm and energy inspiring generations of young Dragons across all abilities. It was noted by many at Guv’s memorial service how they could still recite his poems for memorising Latin declensions, whilst others remembered Inky as an outstanding coach in cricket and rugby, from the Snapdragons to the first teams. Guv’s passion for classical music, shared with many young Dragons, made a lasting contribution to the development of music at the School.

As Inky himself described the Dragon ethos, “the number one wish, though not stated by the children, is to do well in class: even the less able ones.”

Inky and Guv put their names to many fundraising campaigns for the School during their tenure. To celebrate their legacy, both were memorialised with funds named in their honour to support future generations of young Dragons. The Michael Gover Memorial Fund, or ‘Guv’s Fund’, was launched in 2005, with the R K Ingram Memorial Fund, ‘Inky’s Fund’, following in 2009. Gifts to the ‘Guv’s Fund’ provide bursaries for children who would not otherwise be able to come to the Dragon, ‘Inky’s Fund’ helps ensure that no Dragon will have to leave prematurely due to a sudden and often unavoidable change in financial circumstances, such as the loss of a job or parent. The funds work in tandem to benefit both prospective and current Dragon families and have become especially relevant during the global events of our recent past.

Rising school fees across the independent school sector have unfortunately put private education beyond the reach of many. Guv, himself an Old Dragon and the son of a clergyman, was only too aware of this during his time.

“Hum and Joc were immensely kind and generous and helped with our fees. On a Parson’s salary, my father could never have afforded the fees without the Lynam’s help.” Tom Gover (OD 1950), Brother of Guv

In the current climate, it is becoming increasingly important to take the necessary steps to ensure a Dragon Education remains accessible to a wide group of children. The pandemic, coupled with a rise in costs, has meant many Dragon families now find themselves in need of assistance. The Dragon School Bursaries Scheme provides bursaries of up to 95% of fees for five children in each year from E to A Block.

Over five million pounds has been raised for the Dragon’s bursary and hardship funds since 2005, thanks in no small part to the dedicated ongoing support of parents, ODs, governors and friends. The two funds have now been combined with the School’s general bursary and hardship provision, to maximise the benefit of the funding available.

Members from all corners of our community can expect to hear from the School in the next few weeks, regarding our Transformational Bursary Campaign. We hope to carry on the legacy of two excellent Headmasters, by continuing to provide a fair and encouraging environment where children can broaden their minds and prepare themselves for the world ahead of them. Whilst instilling the values of philanthropy, kindness, courage and respect for their fellows.

“His (Guv’s) parliament with Inky proved a great success. Keith provided a ‘safe pair of hands’ for the funds, where Guv provided imagination, humour and a certain charming waywardness. I know he would be delighted that Guv’s Fund could be provided to help with fees for those unable to afford them. There is no doubt in my mind that he did much to maintain the Lynam tradition.” Tom Gover (OD 1950), Brother of Guv

For more information, or to make a gift towards Dragon Bursaries, click here to visit our Transformational Bursaries page or contact the Development Office.

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