HOER LANDBOUSKOOL BOLAND
We profile Boland Landbou, a beautiful school between Paarl and Wellignton, a rugby power in South Africa.
You cannot mention the top rugby schools in South Africa without mentioning Boland Landbou, as everybody calls the school regardless of language. And you do no think Boland Landbou without thinking rugby. The two have become synonymous.
It was not always so but in recent years, under headmaster Jannie van der Westhuizen, a former player and referee, Boland Landbou's rugby has become a force, taking on and defeating schools far bigger than itself.
The school has a choir and plays tennis and has a swimming team and a shooting team, but it is the rugby which has made it famous throughout the length and breadth of South Africa.
It is a different school. It has a farm, in a sense is a farm, and it has its own game reserve, opened in 2002 by philanthropist Anton Rupert. And it has rugby teams. The school was built on the farm Langerug.
It’s a small school but every boy is a boarder and every boy is involved in rugby. The school has some 320 boys and puts 15 teams in the field each week. Those who do not make a side are nonetheless involved in some form of rugby.
The school has beautiful grounds on a rise looking away over fields towards Table Mountain. The area is called Agter Paarl, about 15km from Wellington and Paarl. For a while the school played its rugby in the Boland but has now settled in the Western Province, providing many players for the Craven Week team. In fact there still is a tug-o-war for between Boland and Western Province, sadly mainly political of nature. The fact is that Boland Landbou is happy in the Western Province where better – and closer – opposition is available.
The school is more or less on the border of the two provinces – Western Province and Boland.
Boland? The English equivalent would be hinterland or inland. The Boland is the wonderful country surrounding of Cape Town – the vineyards, orchards and the wheat land, fishing activities of all sorts, dramatic mountains. It is a beautiful part of the world.
Landbou? Agriculture. It is an agricultural school, hence the farm. And the boys work on the farm.
Rugby has spread the name beyond South Africa. In 2002 Boland Landbou won the International Youth Rugby Tournament in Japan. It is normally in the top ten of rugby schools in South Africa and more and more its former pupils are breaking through in top rugby.
Famous rugby old boys
Prop Attie Strauss was the first Springbok, lock Hottie Louw the second, prop Deon Carstens the third, flyhalf Derick Hougaard the fourth. And there are others who have played in top sides – like Manie du Toit, Stefan Basson and Willem de Waal.
Boland Landbou will try hardest against the Paarl Schools – Gim and Boys' High and in its annual interschools with Oakdale, the agricultural school in Riversdale.
Others which have become close rivals are Bishops, SACS, Paul Roos, Rondebosch, Swartland and Outeniqua.
It is a rugby school which hides away from no opponents.
Schools name: Hoër Landbouskool Boland
Motto: Bewaar ons Bodem (Preserve our Land)
Founding date: 1962
School’s address: Private Bag X01, Windmeul. 7630
Number of pupils: 320
Number of rugby teams: 15