Christ’s School At 87: Celebrating Henry Dallimore

Christ’s School At 87: Celebrating Henry Dallimore

Thursday, July 2, 2020 7:33 am


Archdeacon Henry Dallimore, left; Christ School, Ado Ekiti and Dallimore and Dorothy, his wife

     • “He showed the light to Ekiti and the people found the way”

  

Once upon a time, a British priest and his wife  left Britain for the then dangerous terrains  of our Nigeria. The anticipated hardship was less bothering for the couple. The goal of emancipating a people was paramount in their thoughts.

The couple eventually arrived  in Ado-Ekiti and successfully sowed a tiny seed on the rocky slope of the famous Agidimo Hills. That was 87 years ago.

Today, the tiny seed has evidently germinated and grown into a giant tree with long branches that reach to the four corners of our world, carrying aloft the patriotic flag of Ekitiland and Nigeria.

The giant tree is the famous Christ’s School , Ado -Ekiti .

The long branches are the School’s quality Alumni that daily contribute to the advancement of our lovely Earth, across the continents of Africa, Europe, North & South America; Asia etc.

And the sower was Archdeacon Henry Dallimore 

In plainer words, Dallimore was a pionner Christian missionary in old Ekiti Division and founder of the area’s premier secondary school; Christ School, Ado-Ekiti. 

Born 1885 in England, Dallimore came to Ekiti, Nigeria in 1925 alongside Rev. T. Harding, Revd Isaac Babamboni and Canon Jebb. 

Before this time, he had expressed his dissatisfaction with the defects and the conservatism of the English public school system which was limited to the study of Greek and Latin. 

Education in West Africa, Dallimore believed, should be established on a wider platform. In pursuit of this ideology, he moved from Sierra Leone, where he was working, to St. Andrews’s College Oyo.

From Oyo, Dallimore was appointed superintendent of the Ekiti District with full authority to try out his education administrative ideas. Under him, Ekiti primary schools dotting all over the district were united as the Ekiti Central School, representing the beginning of what would become the Christ’s School. That was in 1933.

Dallimore, having laid the foundation of the school, retired in 1947. His struggle against the educational authorities had culminated in the upgrade of his school to a high school-secondary-status. 

While Henry Dallimore was busy nurturing Christ’s School, his wife, Dorothy Dallimore , moved across the valley of Oloogan River and the heights of Ayoba Hills to sow the seed of  what we know today as ILE ABIYE Hospital, Ado-Ekiti, a maternity home that delivered generations of Ekiti people, brand new, to the world.

The couple were too busy nurturing their projects to think of having any biological offspring.

When Dallimore was retiring, he indicated a preference for the grounds of Christ’s School as his resting place. His wish was granted as he was flown to Nigeria for burial on July 19, 1970. 

It was said in Dallimore’s obituary that he showed the light to Ekiti and the people found the way.

Today-June 30,2020-as Christ’s School Students and Alumni celebrate another Founders Day, Dallimore’s name is bound to resonate across the world. From the Thames River side of London Essex to the concrete jungle of New York; From the Dessert fringes of Maiduguri to the swampy coastaland of Lagos; from the Canadian Prairies to the Oriental terrain of the East ; from the Cape to Cairo, the penetrating roar of joy will be Up Dallimoooore, Up Schoooool !

 Curtesy: Wikipedia and various Christ’s School Alumni Internet fora.

-Shared on FB by Gbenga Alaketu

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