It will be a case of go straight to the Heads Office and do not pass go in a new special edition of Monopoly.
Gordonstoun School, where three generations of the Royal family were educated, approached the makers of the Monoply board game asking about a “personalised edition” and 1,000 have now gone on sale this week and are expected to be sold all around the globe.
Though the board game was conceived in 1903 it was not sold commercially until the 1930’s, like the school which was first opened in 1934. That is not the only similarity, there have been more than a hundred local versions of Monopoly, and Gordonstoun is just one of the number of private schools around the world based on a model of education conceived by Kurt Hahn a German educator who later fled to Britain to avoid persecution from Nazi leaders in Germany.
Prince Philip transferred to Gordonstoun from Hahn’s flagship school in Germany, and since then Prince Charles, Prince Andrew and Princess Anne’s daughter Zara Tindall have been educated there. They all will no doubt be familiar to the various squares on the board which not only take in places around the campus but also places in the nearby village of Duffus, like the village shop. Players can buy and sell several places around the school, including the George Welsh sports centre, music school, Ogstoun Theatre and the South Lawn. The well-known places for the successful players, Mayfair and Park Lane have been replaced by Gordonstoun House and the school’s round square respectively.
The idea for the approaching Monopoly came from two members of the school’s admissions team, Andrew Lyall and Emma Thorpe. They have been guided through the process with the board game manufacturers since the spring, Andrew is quoted in The Scotland Herald as saying “It has been a really fun project, and we hope that the boards will encourage trips down memory lane”. It is probably an interesting thought to conjecture as to whether the game will feature in the Christmas plans at Sandringham!