C J Rhodes’ stables…

Just outside of the REPS school grounds is this wonderful old building:

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C J Rhodes lived on top of a hill a short distance away. His house is no longer there, but this stable block remains. Built with huge granite boulder foundations and red brick above, its stood for more than one hundred years.

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It needs renovating now – the sash windows are in a sad way, and the staircase has rotted away. The top deck is made of solid teak and I think the winch, for hauling stockfeed up, is still all there.

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It seems Rhodes’ horses lived well! As a kid, I knew a man who insisted he had been alive in Rhodes’ time. He reported that Rhodes didn’t ride very well – probably why he wanted to build a railway all the way through Africa.

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A short distance away are the Matopos Research Centre buildings – also old colonial style:

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http://zimfieldguide.com/matabeleland-south/rhodes-summer-house

 

 

 

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REPS School, Matopos…

I’ve been wanting to take photos of this marvellous old school for some time. Built in the old colonial style, its white buildings are clearly visible when traveling to the Matopos.

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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rhodes_Estate_Preparatory_School

Pictured above are the boarding hostels which are now for both boys and girls.

P1260370.jpgThe wing on the left is the girl’s hostel, the main entrance on the right.

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What a lovely view from the hostels – the Matopos very close by – perfect playground for energetic boys at boarding school.

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Across the lawns is this stunning chapel. When I took the pic below, the sun was streaming into the round window in the front gable.

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Please excuse this pic! My interiors are not very good! Dito, the image below….the dining hall!

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I’m much better at taking exterior shots! This, below, is the dining hall at REPS.P1260373

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I didn’t realise that REPS was such a small school. From the Kezi Road, it seemed to be a large complex. In fact, many of the buildings belong to the Matopos Research Station. REPS only has about 120 pupils! Of which about 80 are boarders. The classrooms are built around a quadrangle, very much in the colonial style.

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The school hall (above.)

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This last photo is a building now used as a library. It’s built with iron sheeting walls. Anyone who grew up in Zimbabwe will recall these buildings – many of the government offices were initially built this way, as were railway housing, offices and sheds. This building is likely to be one of the oldest buildings in the complex.

I hope you enjoyed this walk around an historic school with me. If you did, please comment below or click the *follow* button to receive posts in your email.

The rains…

As Matabeleland awaits the rains, it gets hot. Very hot. Even the wind is hot! Tar melts, the skies are relentlessly blue, and yet the trees have enough energy to bring out new leaves and flowers.

This pic below was taken on the last day of August:

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The red colour are the calyces  – turning yellow within a month:

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Both these pics are taken at much the same time of the day, and from the same rocky outcrop.

 

Umkhaya Trees…

This year the Umkhaya trees are magnificent.

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In September each year, new leaves burst out bright red, all in a couple of weeks. At much the same time, the yellow flowers provide food for thousands and thousands of insects.

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Walking under this canopy, they buzzed overhead constantly. This photo (above) is taken with strong afternoon light angling in from the left – almost bleaches the strong colours.

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This photo, below, is taken looking towards the Matopos Research Station fields, and the lower areas of REPS school. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rhodes_Estate_Preparatory_School

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Quite a number of my friends went to REPS, as did my father in law. He said it was rather prison like!!! I climbed a small kopjie and took this pic (below) of the school and research station in the distance, the grove of umkhaya trees in the foreground.

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Back in the day, boys who went to REPS were allowed to roam all over this part of the Matopos – I’m not sure if they still do.

Back when we were farming, we used to go to field days held at the Matopos Research Station. Beat standing at the dip!!!

http://www.drss.gov.zw/index.php/2013-02-12-12-32-56/matopos-research-station

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That rock is calling me to climb it!

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P1250334Umkhaya trees are Acacia Galpinii https://www.feedipedia.org/node/352