In memoriam: Antonia Beary (Bl. 1995, 1996)

The Club is sad to report to its members the recent death of Antonia Beary (Trinity and Churchill). Formerly the Headmistress of Mayfield School, Sussex, Antonia’s rowing career with CUWBC spanned 3 seasons in which the Club won 8 of its 9 races. A spare for the Lightweight crew in 1994, she stepped up to the bow seat of Blondie in 1995, winning her race, then coming back a second time in 1996 in the same seat for the same result but representing Churchill.

Her destiny was to be an educator of rare skill, teaching first at the Perse School, then she rose quickly to become Ampleforth’s first female Head of Boarding, before going to Mayfield School as Deputy Headmistress in 2006, and becoming Headmistress of the School in 2008, to which she devoted fifteen years of her life.

Although towards the end of her life she was beset by illness, she was recognised by the school council not only for her care for her students but for her “determination to face her illness head on and to continue to live her life to the full”, which she continued to do for all of her life.

One of her final pleasures was to see her nephew aged 12 take his first strokes in a scull, and to pass on that love of rowing to him. She is perhaps most clearly remembered by one of her 1995 clubmates as simply “a lovely lady”.

Her requieum mass will be held at 12pm 18th November at Mayfield School by invitation and live streamed at Should members wish to remember her by donation, donations may be made to