CAP Chaps re-unite

The much awaited CAP50 reunion took place on-board MHS President on Saturday 30th June, 2012.

Below you will find an initial "report" from Westie, whilst here you can find 55 'mug' shots. Photos on Flicker from Michael (Mick) Lacey.

And a few memories, not just from CAP50 but going back a bit, from Graham Elliot.

If you have any reports, photos or links for this page please submit them to Westie using the 'Contact Us' form.

Hi there!

This really is going to be a 'shortie' - well possibly by my standards!

Firstly, thanks one final time to you all for coming and making the day so memorable - certainly if the many enthusiastic emails I've since received are anything to go by, then I think its safe to say, a good day was had by all! Apologies for not having replied to you all individually but there has been a tad more 'tidying up' to do than I anticipated - not to mention the 'catching up' on all the stuff that I had put to one side in the run up - that had become quite a pile too!

All your notes of enjoyment and thanks, were greatly appreciated as indeed have been the photos of the day, which I am passing on to our newly appointed web-master Alan Fair. Thank you so much for the pics, while I'm sure your memories of the day will be long and lasting, for S.O.Gs (Senile Old Gits - with apologies to Terry Wogan!) like myself, a more permanent record of the event and the wonderful people who attended, is necessary.

It appears that during the evening Arthur Trice and Alan got talking about the web site with the result that henceforth Alan has agreed to take over the reins, and Arthur has hung up his mouse. A lot of technical stuff has been explained to me, all of which has gone totally over my head, but as I understand it, there might even now be the possibility of making a cup of tea on the site - if you press the right buttons!

All I would like to say at this juncture is to express my enormous and sincere thanks to Arthur for all that he has done for (and on) the web site to date. It was totally his brain child and he shouldered the entire responsibility for running it and did a positively splendid job, for which I have been, and will always be, eternally grateful and appreciative.

Thank you Arthur for all your dedication, commitment and blinking hard work - and not to mention 'know how' - without any of which we simply wouldn't have a web site.

I know also that from now on, with all the running stuff now being in the equally safe hands of Alan Fair, CAPNews can only go from strength to strength!

I thank you Alan in advance for taking over the mantle - while I can confirm my own commitment and enthusiasm to the cause, I just hope you don't expect anything too technical to come from my end of the partnership!

What will be coming your way very soon incidentally, will be all the afore-mentioned photos (or in one case, the link to) which, as I have already said, have been passed to me. I haven't done an editing job on them, so there are a few duplicates so maybe along the way one or two might get dropped off, but I repeat again, many thanks for all your contributions. They all go towards completing the occasion and the experience!

One other thing that was (I think) an equally successful part of the occasion was the memorabilia table, thanks to all the 'stuff' that was brought along. You really did us proud and my word, do I have a veritable treasure trove!

Many thanks to everyone who contributed, it really does make for wonderful reading – albeit so far I have only had the chance to briefly scan a very small proportion of it, suffice to be able to see however that there is sufficient material (given the patience and the time, which I’m not sure I really have, but will hope to be able to raise!) to produce what I hope might/could be a reasonable record of CAP (of which I’m sure we all have the fondest of memories) from about the late seventies to around the late eighties.

I'm not making any promises, but I'll see what maybe we can do - with a spot of scanning and cut and pasting, who knows what might come out!

(Actually, I've just has a thought, maybe ART hasn't gotten completely away after all!)

For the record, the stuff that I have (in no order of importance, or indeed relevance) including its contributory sources, where known, is:

The CAP Christmas Chronicle(s) – numerous, which are simply the funniest stuff I have read in years and only the good Lord knows how I will be able to just pick out the best bits, there are just so many! I unearthed a big omnibus edition myself (covering yrs 1970 – 1974) but I’m not sure who brought along yrs. 1977, 1978, 1979, but, whoever did, if you can let me know, I will gladly make sure you get them back. They are positively priceless so I’m sure you would not want to lose any.

But if nobody claims them, then rest assured, they will be safe with me in perpetuity!

CAP IN-FORM(s) – various, covering the period Dec. ’82 to August ’88, without ‘ownership’

(Other) CAP IN-FORMS – various, covering the period December ’82 to October ’85, provided by Denise Stone(Ellis)

BRANCHLINE(s) – numerous, covering the period Sept. ’78 to Dec. ’80, mostly donated by a G. Manson, although who brought them along, Lord only knows – as there was nobody down on the attendees list with that name!

Miscellaneous material, provided by Peter Milham

Miscellaneous material, including some marvellous photos, provided by Mike James, one of which shows just how he may have looked had he taken up medicine instead of computing! (I'm sure he would have had a wonderful bedside manner!!)

Finally, various other ‘stuff’ of mixed origin and content, including numerous technical documents enlightening us on how to program, design and test systems and lead teams manfully into the unknown! Plus numerous Report and Accounts and other publications announcing how well (or otherwise) CAP’s finances, and standing, were faring!

As with the Chronicles, if anyone who brought anything along wants it returned, please let me know and I will ensure that you get it back.

Finally, your email addresses. I didn’t receive one objection to sharing them [but I'm not putting them on the website until I can find a secure way of doing it - Alan]

Hopefully they will help you all to maintain better contact with one another.

Well that really is it. (I guess it was still a bit long!)

If the experience was as rewarding for you as it was for me, then I reckon it was a good job done!

Try and stay around for the next one - I'll try to do so, although certainly if there is to be one, then The President will definitely have to designate an area for the zimmer frames!

All the best and cheers


What follows is "History".
Sent:27 January 2012 17:35
Subject: CAP50 Progress Report Jan 2012

Hi there all you exCAPers, I hope you all had a goodly (and indeed for those of you who have thing going with Himself, a Godly) Christmas and the CAP50 Reunion year has started as you would wish it to continue.

(Be warned - this missive is probably going to be – even by my standards – a fairly lengthy tome as there is a fair amount to tell you about!!)

Anyway, first things first – WHERE ARE WE AT!!

Well, there are already around 140 of you who have signed up, which with some five months still to go, is really, a tremendous turn-out. Many thanks to all of you – and especially those of you who have actually even pledged your troth with some of your hard earned cash! Some deposits still need to come in mind, so if you are one of those lagging behind a touch, all contributions will be gratefully received!

Now, before going any further, one bit of news which I’m sure many of you will be pleased to read about – and I’m getting it in early just in case you might have been tempted to switch off, and so may have missed it!

I’m sure that many of you will recall that originally we decided to make this event an exCAPers ONLY bash, well in response to some lobbying, it has been decided to relax – just a smidgen – that condition. No, that doesn’t mean that all and sundry can bring along their ‘other halves’ but it seems there is a fair body of people who’s partners also happened to work on some of CAP’s (mainly) larger projects – jobees like British Steel, Barclaycards, Access etc., and excuses for those other, equally big and important jobs that I haven’t mentioned! – but who themselves were never actually members of the CAP staff as such, but who worked alongside our chaps (and chapesses!) as either other sub-contractors or even members of the Client’s staff, but who were frankly, for all intents and purposes, all part of the ‘big family’, and would certainly have known (and been known by) as many exCAPers as the rest of us.

So, to any of you who feel that your partners fall into this latter category, if you (and indeed, they) would like to come along on the 30th June to meet up with their old friends once more, then please, feel free – they will, I can assure you, be made more than very welcome.

Right now onto another topic which has raised some interest – HOTEL ACCOMMODATION!

Well unfortunately, in the event, I haven’t been able to negotiate any significant discounts with any of the ‘better’ hotels – I get the feeling that (despite the harder economic climate) times are still pretty good for the hotel business in London, and so there’s not a lot of pressure on them to ‘deal. As a result you could be looking at anything from around seventy-five pounds upwards person per night for Saturday night, although double bookings (ie including Friday night as well)are more attractive and some reductions can be found if you punt around.

However it is not all doom and gloom as I have found ONE hotel in the Strand, called The Strand Continental Hotel, which does offer very cheap B & B – however I must stress that it is possibly the most basic hotel accommodation that I suspect any of you will have ‘enjoyed’ since your YMCA/student days! Clean enough but limited!

The point is that at anything from £20.00 to £35.00 per person, you really can’t expect a lot – and indeed you won’t get it!! The price does include a Continental breakfast, but that’s about it. None of the rooms (for instance) even include their own en suite bathrooms – its very much ‘shared’ facilities down the hall!

There are a number of ‘double’ rooms available (at £70.00 for the room/night), and while unfortunately there is only one ‘twin’ bedded room (at £80.00 per room/night) there are a number of three-bedded ‘dormitories’ that work out at £20.00 per person/night – albeit two of the beds are set up as bunks, which is possibly OK for (ex naval) chaps like myself who may have been used to upper bunk sleeping, but might not quite be everyone’s cup of tea!

As I said it is pretty basic but there is one very big PLUS and that is, that it is all part of the same ‘establishment’/building as the INDIA CLUB, which I can highly recommend, if you are into real traditional Indian food. It was one of the very first Southern Indian restaurants in London, being established in 1946 by the then, India’s first High Commissioner to the UK– and as it’s compliment slip says, has changed very little in the interim. Quote ‘with its rich history and faded colonial charm, the India Club is an unforgettable experience!’

So while you may not necessarily enjoy the luxury of one of London’s top hotels, it won’t exactly break your bank, and should you still feel hungry after the reunion, you will be able to enjoy a great meal at again very reasonable prices. Their Masala Dosas are to die for – believe me!

So if you do decide you would like to stay overnight, and (dare I say it!) you don’t mind slumming it a tad, the Strand Continental ( could be just the place for you. Your organiser for one may well be staying there incidentally, himself.

Following on from the previous item, which I hope will have been of some interest particularly to the next group of people that we are specifically addressing now – namely THOSE OF YOU WHO WERE BASED IN THE ‘OUTER REACHES’ OF CAP’S EMPIRE, like in the Northern and Scotland locations, and indeed even abroad such as in Holland or further afield such as the US and even the Far East and Australia.

Now I appreciate that for you to join us it is a much bigger ‘investment’ – in indeed both time as well as money – but please be assured that we really would like to have you along. Some of your friends and ex-colleagues have indeed already ‘signed up’ so you certainly shouldn’t be on your own, but we really would like to have more of you along. The extended family is just as important today as it has ever been, so, if you were wondering if just maybe, it might be nice to catch up on ‘old what’s ‘is/’er name’ again, NOW really is your chance. Again, as we have said to everyone, you can be assured of a really warm welcome. And hopefully, now seeing that you could also get a (relatively) modestly-priced place to lay your head after (and indeed, even before) the event, should you so wish to make a stay of it, then why not come along.

This will almost certainly be the very last opportunity any of us will ever have of catching up with those old friends again!

Now one final item, for which we really would appreciate your help, to make this occasion even more special!

While it is true that we – ALL OF US – are what this ’do’ is really all about, we suspect that for many of us the memory is beginning to wane a tad! In my own case it is receding at a frighteningly rapid rate, so what we are after is any bits of MEMORABILIA with which we will be able to festoon and decorate the venue. Old photographs, posters, articles, old exhibition material – even old branch and project reports – all and anything which may help to jog some of those fading memories, will be welcome, that we will be able to leave around for anyone to browse through, should they be in need of a comfort break from all the oozing nostalgia which we know will be swamping the place out!

Naturally it will all be returnable afterwards – should you want it back – although if that were to be the case then it would be important to mark it appropriately.

Anyway, if you could take a look please in all those lofts – it is really quite amazing just what you may well find up there. Ideally it would be nice if we could have it in advance – and certainly should there be any transporting costs to do so, then I know the kitty will be able to stand it! – but even if it were not possible to deliver it before the event, then even delivering it on the day it would be equally appreciated. If you do have anything then if you could please email me to let me know, I would be very grateful.

Well that’s about it for now! I did warn you that this one was going to go on a bit, but hopefully you will have gleaned some useful/helpful information.

As with earlier missives for privacy reasons, I have BCC’d this but should you like to see just who will be there next June I have attached an Attendees list - and most impressive it is too! It’s an Excel document so hopefully you’ll be able to access it.

Incidentally, if you haven’t yet signed up to join us, there is still plenty of space and of course time – it will never be too late to decide, although the earlier we have an idea as to what our final numbers are likely to be the easier and better it will be for when it comes to sorting out the catering etc.

Please don’t forget to keep spreading the word around. While we already have a pretty impressive list of names, there are still masses of people who are not down and as we don’t necessarily know individual email addresses, there are bound to be still many who have not yet heard about the event.



Many thanks for your attention and indeed again for your support, without which this whole venture really wouldn’t have a shout.