Lawrence College Ghora Gali (or GG) is situated in the foothills of the Himalayas and Pir Panjal at a height of about 1950 meters (6395 feet) above sea level, on a pine covered spur, covering an area of 150 acres. GG is 4 km from Murree Town and 57 km from Rawalpindi. Weather remains moderate throughout the year, with rains in July and August. In winters when the estate is covered with snow, the college is closed for a three-month vacation.
Sir Henry Lawrence was the force behind the Lawrence Schools of the subcontinent. He was born in 1806 in (then) Ceylon and educated at Folye College Derry and then Addiscomb Military Seminary. He joined the East India Company, rising to the rank of Brigadier General in the Bengal Artillery,
While engaged in matters of concern to the British Government of India like the revenue system, the canal system, and roads, the worry that was always with him was the future of the orphans of British soldiers. This worry took the form of the four asylums.
- Sanawar 1847
- Lovedale 1858
- Mount Abu 1857
- Ghora Gali 1860
The Sanawar, Lovedale and Mount Abu were constructed and commissioned in the life time of Sir Henry Lawrence, while Ghora Gali came into being after his death.
The asylum at Ghora Gali was elevated to a school in 1914 and then a college in 1926.
College Chapel is an architectural masterpiece constructed in 1894. It was renovated and given a fresh look in 1989, and was converted into the School of Music and Handicraft, inaugurated by Iranian Artist Feroza Gul Mohammadi. On 17th November 2007, with contributions from the then Governor of the Punjab Lt Gen Khalid Maqbool, it was renovated and was re-dedicated as a chapel in a prayer service in the presence of the local Christian community and priests from the Church of Pakistan Lahore Diocese. The Principal Air Cdr (R) Farooq Hussain Kiyani who took the initiative for its restoration and rededication, inaugurated the ceremony on behalf of the Governor,and Bishop of Pakistan who couldn’t make it for the event.
Now the Lawrence college Chapel stands over the hilltop in its previous glory. Occasional prayer services are held in the chapel with the combined efforts of the local churches in Murree under the supervision of the headmistress of the Junior school. It is maintained by the college administration as a religious, historical and architectural heritage of the college. Its old clock tower( a miniature replica of the Westminster chimes) still gives off the gongs which were once considered the heart beat of the college.
It changed its name to Pine Hills College in 1973, and then to Ghora Galli College in 1979 and then back to Lawrence College Ghora Gali Murree in 1986.
Logo & Motto
Before 1920, the school crest was an eagle poised for flight, with the motto ‘Onwards and Upwards’.
The present logo is an adaptation of the Lawrence Coat of Arms, granted to the college in 1926 by Sir Alexander Hutchison Lawrence, the eldest son of Sir Henry. The motto is "Never Give In".
A fire destroyed the College Auditorium (Lawrence Hall) in 1994. It was reconstructed in 1999 ands inaugurated by the Governor of the Punjab Mr. Shahid Hamid. This auditorium is used for all main occasions of the college like debates, addresses by visiting dignitaries, mushairas and variety shows on the occasion of the Founders Day.
There are two governing bodies of the college:-
- Board of Governors
- Executive Committee
The Board of Governors is headed by the Governor of the Punjab, while the Principal is ex officio Secretary to the board. In addition to a few government officials there are fixed seats for dignitaries who are the alumni. One of the illustrious sons of GG, former Prime Minister of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan Mir Zafarullah Khan Jamali, is the lifetime member.
The General Officer Commanding (GOC) of the 12th Infantry Division, Murree is the Chairman of the Executive Committee.
GG comprises three schools or sections:
- Junior School (Class 1 to 4)
- Preparatory School (Class 5-7)
- Senior School (Class 8-12, including O’ Levels and Intermediate)
Each school has a separate geographical location and a separate Head. Junior School is headed by a Headmistress while Prep and Senior Schools by a Headmaster each. All the three Heads report directly to the Principal who is the over all in charge of the estate, academics and administration.
The house system probably came into being in the 1920s. The houses were named after former British Principals and Governors of the Punjab. The house system inculcates in a student a sense of competition and loyalty. Each house is headed by a Housemaster who is assisted by a Deputy and two tutors all from the teaching faculty. The four houses are:-
- Peake (yellow and green), Tipu House (1973-2011)
- Walker (green and white), Jinnah House (1973-2011)
- Wightwick (red and black), Babar House (1973-2011)
- Wright (Cambridge blue and Oxford blue),Iqbal House (1973-2011)
The daily routine comprises studies and sports. The curriculum prepares students for the three public examinations, O’ Levels, Matriculation and Intermediate where a student has a choice to follow Pre Medical, Pre Engineering, General Science or ICS. Soon A Level studies will start for which an academic block is under construction.
Facilities include classrooms, Seminar Hall, IT Lab, Internet Café, and Science labs. The Holy Quran and Nazira are taught, this later course is started and completed during the Junior School while Qiraat is taught till the Intermediate.
There are two mosques in the campus, one contiguous to the Preparatory School and the other to the Senior School. Mahgrib and Zuhar prayers are mandatory. Friday congregational prayers are compulsory which most of the staff also attend.
College teams play friendly and competitive matches designated as annual fixtures against sister institutions like Abbottabad Public School, Army Burn Hall College Abbottabad, Cadet College Hassanabdal and Aitchison College Lahore. They play inter-house league matches to win trophies for hockey, football, athletics, and cricket.
The college runs a marathon race every year with an organized one months practice. The Jamali Stadium has added yet another dimension to the layout of the campus. It is here that the annual Sports and Founders’ Days are organized for the award of trophies and shields to winners and the best house is declared the “Champion House” with the award of the Quaid e Azam shield.
Sesquicentennial celebration in 2010 was an auspicious occasion held on 7th, 8th and 9th October. It was attended by almost every living Gallian with young students, parents, civil and military officials and delegation from Lawrence School Sanawar, led by their Headmaster Mr. Praveen Vasisht. The Prime Minister of Islamic Republic of Pakistan Syed Yousaf Raza Gillani presided over the celebrations. The late Governor of the Punjab Mr Salman Taseer was present in his capacity of the Chairman Board of Governors. President Azad Kashmir Raja Zulqarnain, an Old Gallian himself, was another attendee.
Sir Henry Montgomery Lawrence’s memory was revived by the presence of his present title holder Sir Henry Lawrence. The Pakistan Mint minted a Rs 20 coin and the Pakistan Post printed a set of four philatelic stamps of Rs 8 domination on this occasion of historic importance.
The oldest alumnus Mr. GM Khan (Dane House 1930) was the Guest of Honour at the Old Gallians Reunion held on 7th Oct 2010 held in the Lawrence Hall as the 1st day of the celebration.
Gift to GG by Old Gallians
Old Gallians presented a gift to their alma mater in a form of a clock tower with time capsules buried in the basement, to be unearthed with a gap of 35 years each. The clock has been supplied by Smith of Derby, UK.
The Principal Air Cdre (R) Farooq Hussain Kiyani was decorated with a college blazer and conferred the title of a “Gallian” for his long service after partition as Principal. He is the second Principal to be thus decorated after Mr. M.L Charlsworth (1961-1966).
- Brig(R) Abdul Hafeez (2012–present)
- Air Cdre. (R) Farooq H. Kiyani (2002–2012)
- Mr. Noor Mohammad Khan (1997–2002)
- Brain Robert Manthorp (1996-1996). (Bob Manthrop)
- Prof Mohammad Asif Malik, (Pride of Performance) (1990–1995)
- Brig Saeed Ahmad (R) (1986–1990)
- Brig Shaukat Khurshid (R) (1981–1986)
- Brig S. Safdar Nawab (R) (1977–1981)
- Brig Mohammad Rafiq (R) (1973–1977)
- Lt Col.A. Hamid Ibrahim (R) (1966–1973)
- Michael Charlesworth (1961–1966)
- Shaikh Moinuddin (1958–1961)
- Mr. H.L.O Flecker (1955–1958)
- Ch. Abdul Hamid (1952–1955)
- Mr.S.T. Thurely (1949–1952)
- Mr. H.L.Edwards (1948–1949)
- Mr.A.S. Collier (1946–1948)
- Canon W. Francis Cotton (1934–1946)
- Rev. W .T.Wright (1922–1934)
- Rev W Eyre Walker (1921–1922)
- Rev Wightwick (1910–1921)
- Rev. H.W.Bush (1909–1910)
- Rev C.H. Browne (1908–1909)
- Rev. W.H.G Padfield (1904–1908)
- Rev G C Peake (1874–1904)
- Rev Smithwite (1868–1873)
- Rev B. Dexter (1863–1868)
- Rev H. W Tebernacle (1860–1863)
Alumni include a Prime Minister of Pakistan, Chief Ministers and Governors of all Provinces, a President of Azad Kashmir, a 4-star General and a couple of dozen each of Ministers, 3-star Generals and Grade 22 Officers. In addition there are artists, poets, painters, businessmen, top executives, lawyers, doctors and engineers etc.
Alumni of note include:
- Mir Zafarullah Khan Jamali (former PM)
- Raja Muhammad Zulqarnain Khan (President AJK)
- Mumtaz Bhutto (politician)
- Aftab Ahmad Sherpao (politician)
- Nisar Mohammad Khan (former Senator)
- Sardar Asif Ahmed Ali (politician-artist-writer)
- Ayaz Amir (politician, journalist)
- Shahid Khaqan Abbasi (politician, businessman)
- Raja Ashfaq Sarwar (politician)
- GG Jamal (politician)
- Ismail Gulgee (artist)
- Waheed Murad (film artist)
- Chengez Sultan (painter)
- Humayun Tallat (painter)
- Rear Admiral Zahir Shah (Retd)(writer-painter)
- Gen Shamim Alam Khan (retd)
- Lt General Imran Ullah Khan (retd)
- Admiral Shamoon Alam Khan (retd)
- Lt Gen Hamid Rab Nawaz, HI(M) (retd)
- Lt Gen Javed Alam Khan (retd)
- Lt Gen Sajjad Akram (retd)
- Lt Gen Mehmood Ahmad (Retd)
- Lt Gen Syed Mohammad Amjad (retd)
- Brig Zafar Hayat Janjua (Olympian)
- Ch Tanvir Ahmad A.I.G Punjab (Police)
- Naeem Sarfraz (intellectual, businessman, former ship owner)
- M. Athar Tahir(retd Govt Servant CSP)(poet, author, translator, painter and calligrapher)
- Javaid Sadiq Malik (retd Govt Servant CSP)
- Shakeel Durrani ( government servant CSP)
- Prof Dr Jamal Islam (intellectual)
- Ebrahim Hashim (businessman)
- Kadir Jaffer (businessman)
- Mr. Munir Malik (lawyer)
- Mr. Wassaf Shaikh (Banker)
- Mr. Sheheryar Mirza GM Pearl Continental Rawalpindi (hospitality)
- Mr. Tariq Hayat Khan ( government servant PAKISTAN ADMINISTRATIVE SERVICE)