We profile Uplands College in the Lowveld.
The Lowveld is one of the most beautiful parts of the world. Uplands College is in the Lowveld – at White River.
The White River, a tributary of the crocodile, was first Mhloppemanzi to the Swazis, then Witrrivier to the Afrikaners and then White River to the English, named because kaolin gave the water a white hue.
After the South African War, Lord Milner gave land to British and Boer veterans to farm the area, ;laying on irrigation. The farms were not big but productive. At first the farmers suffered badly at the hands of insects and drought but gradually the area has become fruit-producing, citrus above all.
Gradually a settlement grew into the town of White River north of Nelspruit – a lovely town with its flowering trees, butterfly garden, views and access to the Kruger park, Sudwala Caves, Blyde River Canyon, God’s Window, Pilgrim’s Rest and other marvellous places.
It started in 1928 as Uplands Preparatory School, a private farm school attached to the Anglican Church. On 31 May 1997 the governors made the decision to grow the Prep into a College. Mondi gave land and the Anglo American Chairman’s Fund gave R350 000 and the school community provided the rest as it grew from 90 pupils in 1997 to 340 in 2004.
It is a private, fee-paying coeducational school in a beautiful area with all the advantages of being in a beautiful area.
The school offers a variety of sports, including rugby. For such a new school it takes time to build a sporting tradition.
Rugby at Uplands
The College has 4 sides that play in the Mpumalanga (MPU) Small Schools league. The 1st XV were placed 1st in the Lowveld section of the league. It played 14 matches and was unbeaten but lost to Volksrust in the Mpumalanga semi-finals.
In 2004 the school had two players in the Mpumalanga Under-18, one in the Mpumalanga Under-16 and one in the Mpumalanga Under-19.
This year, in an adventurous undertaking, it hosts the biennial Independent Schools Rugby Festival with 18 schools coming to Uplands to play
Name: Uplands College
School Motto: Today’s thinking child is tomorrows achiever
Foundation date: 1997
Address: Private Bag X9909, White River 1240
Number of pupils: 340
Number of rugby teams: 4