Army Burn Hall College for Boys

College Infrastructured

Thijssen Block (Academics Block)

The main building of Senior Burn Hall School has been named as Thijssen Block. Father Herman Thijssen studied at Mill Hill colleges in Tilburg, Roosendaal and Mill Hill. He was ordained priest in 1932 in Mill Hill and appointed at Nellore, India. He played the most important role in establishing Burn Hall School in Srinagar in 1943. After partition of India in 1947, he migrated to Rawalpindi. Starting, managing and building schools was his special charisma, and it was not long after his arrival in Rawalpindi City that he got St. Mary’s School up and running. He also established St. Mary’s School in Peshawar. When in 1947, Burn Hall School was shifted from Srinagar, Fr. Thijssen once again played the leading role and opened the school once again in Abbottabad in 1948, with the assistance of Frs. Boerkamp, Scanlon and Mallet. Thus, he was the founding Principal of Burn Hall School Abbottabad. His contributions to turning Burn Hall as renowned academic institution are simply matchless. Therefore, due to his contributions, SAS Block is named as Thijssen Block.

The building was constructed in 1956 with the establishment of this iconic institution, in red brick and is the classic example of British architecture with wooden upper floor structure. The building, at present is located in the centre of the College Campus in front of the hockey ground. The dining hall is on one side and College library on the other side of this building. The British style legendary block comprises classrooms, a discussion room and fully equipped computer laboratories along with St. Gabriel House on the first floor, which was later named as Syed Ahmed Shaheed House. The House has a capacity of accommodating for more than 150 students along with HM’s office, AHM’s rooms, and a well-equipped common room with other allied facilities. One of the rooms on ground floor, once used to be the office and residence of Father Scanlon, has also been preserved.

It is the oldest and the most fascinating building in the Senior Campus- a symbol of Burn Hall’s legacy and tradition. This historically significant structure has been preserved with great devotion to this day as a as an asset of incomparable worth. Many notable alumni, currently the great leaders of our country, treasure the memories of their school life especially the time spent in this Block has ineffaceable imprints on their minds.

Shanks Block (School Section)

The two storied building of Shanks Block is situated in the middle of Thijssen Block and Johnson Hill.

Mgr. George Shanks was ordained priest on September 17, 1933. He was appointed as missionary in Punjab Mission in Kashmir. He started his ministry as a teacher in St. Joseph’s College Baramulla and succeeded Father Alexander Andrews as Principal in 1941. At the end of 1942, a portion of the school was shifted to Srinagar and it was renamed as Burn Hall School by Father Shanks, after the name of his Alma Mater in England. In 1948, Burn Hall School was established in Abbottabad and he humbly accepted the giant responsibility of being the Headmaster, as he was the driving force behind establishing the school. He also rendered significant services in re-establishment of the Burn Hall School Srinagar. Owing to his long and passionate services to the institution, the School Block has been named as Shanks Block

The foundation stone of the building was laid by Lt Gen Syed Arif Hassan, HI(M) Commander 10 Corps Chairman BOG on 14th May, 2003 and was inaugurated by Lt Gen Sallah Ud Din, HI(M), SBT Chairman Board of Governors on January 05, 2006. The building of Shah Ismail Shaheed House formerly known as St. Michael’s House is also located in this Block, with the capacity to accommodate more than 150 students along with HM’s office, AHM’s rooms, common room and other allied facilities. At present, it houses 9th and 10th classes with a front courtyard that is sometimes used for Morning Assembly. Section Head’s office and offices of Biology and Pakistan Studies Department, 3 well-equipped Science laboratories and a computer lab with latest facilities are also a part of this section. The students promoted from middle section and the fresh intakes for vacant seats continue their studies of SSC I and II working hard eagerly to join the college section.

Zia Block (College Section)

As the institution was handed over to Pakistan Army in 1977, the need was felt to raise the School to College standard. Thus with the passionate efforts of the Principal Bashir Ahmed Malik and General Zia Ul Haq, the then Chief of Army Staff and first Patron in Chief, the School attained the standard of College. The two storeyed building of the College Section situated on the right side of the dining hall was added on 3rd May, 1979, with its foundation stone laid by Gen Muhammad Zia Ul Haq, President of Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Besides expansive classrooms for 1st year and 2nd year students and the Section Head’s office, it also has a beautiful lawn in front, often used for Lawn Studies, prior to the board exams. Students have great affiliation with College Block as they wait for years to reach this standard and are blessed to leave the institution after two years of intensive studies here. The memories of College life linger with them throughout life no matter wherever they are. Owing to his services to Burn Hall School, the College Block has been named as Zia Block by the Principal, Brig. Wajid Qayyum Paracha.

B.A Malik Library

Library is the soul of an educational institution that determines the intellectual health of its members. Senior Burn Hall School has been blessed with this paradise of learning right from the start i.e 1956. The first College library was located in Thijssen Block was a source to enrich the minds of the students with the valuable knowledge stocked in the books on different subjects and topics. Later it was shifted to the present building constructed in 1973. In 2017, the library was uplifted with provision of more books, educational CDs and e-link, and was named after Brigadier Bashir Ahmed Malik, the first Army Principal of the College.

Brig. Bashir Ahmed Malik remained the Principal of Burn Hall School, from 1977 to 1982. He was the first Muslim Principal of Burn Hall School, after it was handed over to Pakistan Army in 1977. He had the longest tenure at Burn Hall after Fathers. During the time of Brig, B.A Malik, there had been systematic development of BOG, staff salaries and reinforcement of academics. In 1979, College Block was constructed and in 1981, Principal’s House, a Squash Court, a Tennis Court and Basketball Court were added to the College Campus. During his last days, in 1982, 4 Married Officers Quarters for teachers were also constructed. Owing to his services to Burn Hall, the College Library has been named as B.A Malik library after its major renovation in 2017.

Currently it has a collection of about 8600 books and more than 3 million e-books and articles which contain an ocean of knowledge and wisdom for the Hallians to quench their thirst of learning and develop the habit of learning. The library in charge and the assistant librarian are available for the students to facilitate them to take maximum benefit and develop a deeper insight on all spheres of life. No doubt, College library is the most peaceful and soothing corner in the Campus and has no match in beauty and benefit.

Scanlon Hall (College Auditorium)

The state of the art College Auditorium is located in front of the hockey ground, with the B.A Malik Library on its right side. Its foundation stone was laid by Maj Gen Hamid Rab Nawaz, HI (M), the then Commandant PMA / Deputy Chairman BOG on 21 May, 2003. In recognition to the most dedicated services of Rev. Father Francis Scanlon, the first Principal of the College (1956-64), with the longest tenure of service in the history of College, the ultra-modern auditorium was named as Scanlon Hall by the then Principal, Brig. Mahmud Bashir Bajwa, (L)qsl(T).

Father Francis Scanlon was one of the most impeccable missionaries who had served Burn Hall. His priestly life started in 1940. He remained the Principal of Burn Hall School from 1956 to 1964 and from 1965 to 1971. He not only administered the School single handedly but he was also an effective teacher. During his stay, the school reached the heights of excellence and his pupils cherish the times spent under him in the campus. Moreover, the alumni of his times achieved high stature in their careers and are renowned for their contributions towards image building of the country.

The Scanlon Hall houses 750 seats with a magnificent stage, side rooms, basements, main lobby and wash-room facilities. It is the heart of the institution as numerous College level social and co-curricular events including All Pakistan Bilingual Declamation Competition are held in this august Hall. It is also alternative venue for Parents Day function and Morning Assembly, in case of inclement weather. Movies are also shown to students and the faculty members in the same auditorium on regular basis on weekends.

Hettinga Hall (Multipurpose Hall)

The inclement weather/winter specific, indoor-sports/recreation facility for students and the faculty was need of the hour. Thus it was planned to construct a Gymnasium that could be used for multi-purposes. This indoor sports complex comprised 2 Badminton, one Volley Ball and one Basket Ball court with seating arrangement for 250 spectators. Its foundation stone was laid by Brig. Abdul Hafeez SI(M) on May 03, 2010 and was inaugurated by Major General Mazhar Jamil, Deputy Chairman Board of Governors in Sep, 2011. Initially it was used for recreational purpose only. Currently, it serves as centre for the Board Exams of the College students besides the internal exams organizing indoor sports and central classes.

Father Nicholas Hettinga was nominated the first Bishop of Prefecture of Kashmir and Kafiristan in 1947. In the aftermath of Indo Pak war of 1948 over Kashmir, the volatile political situation in Kashmir forced Bp. Hettinga to move Burn Hall School from Srinagar to Abbottabad. Initially, students were accommodated in a rented building but later on permanent site was acquired on Mansehra Road in Abbottabad to establish Burn Hall School. If he had not taken the decision for shifting Burn Hall from Srinagar to Abbottabad, there would have no Burn Hall in Abbottabad today. He had also established St. John’s School in Peshawar and was known as ‘Qaid-e-Kalisia’ of the Diocese of Rawalpindi, and is revered as ‘Saint’ by the people. On account of the role played by Bishop Hettinga, in shifting Burn Hall to Abbottabad and then expanding till Senior Burn Hall, as first Patron, multipurpose hall has been named as Hettinga Hall.

Raheel Sharif Sports Complex

Since its inception, Burn Hall School has always laid due emphasis on the importance of games and sports for shaping and building the character and stamina of its students. As time passed, more sports facilities were added along with the expansion of other infrastructure. The well-equipped Squash Courts, state of the art Gymnasium, huge Swimming Pool and Lawn Tennis Courts were valuable addition meant to enable boys excel in the respective sport. Its foundation was laid by Maj. General Chaudhary Abdul Mujeeb, Chairman Board of Governors, Army Burn Hall Institutions, on December 03, 1986. Provision of the latest facilities and its extensive renovation by General Raheel Sharif, HI (M) added more to its worth.

General Raheel Sharif, HI (M), the then Commandant Pakistan Military Academy Kakul, was the Deputy Chairman Board of Governors of Army Burn Hall Educational Institutions from Oct, 2008 to Oct, 2010. The worthy Patron in Chief took an avid interest in the working and development of the College. He was always supportive to broaden the College Infrastructure and provide latest facilities to the students. Under his kind command and unswerving support, the extensive renovation of the College Squash Court and construction of New Campus were made possible. The College Hospital, located in front of SAS House, was also inaugurated by him. Due to his continued involvement and profound concern for the uplift of the College, the the facility has been named as Raheel Sharif Sports Complex.

It’s a prized place for the Hallian squash- lovers to improve their innate talent. Every year the Inter House Squash competition is held in the College for which the players prepare and practice a lot and exhibit their skills.

Tess Block (MI Room)

Tess Block constructed in 1956, is situated besides SAS House, comprising MI Room, 4 classrooms and a staffroom for male faculty. The College Hospital is a well- equipped, 15-beds fully furnished hospital for the provision of medical care to the students. It functions under the supervision of College Medical Officer and two Nursing Assistants. It is a blessing for everyone in case of emergency and minor accidents at any time of the day. The kind care provided to the students helps them recover soon and makes them feel at home especially those who are away from their homes.

The history of the College hospital traces back to the Fathers. Initially it was in Thijssen block - an open and well -furnished area to the left side of the SAS House on 1st floor, which is now AHM’s room. At present the College Hospital is located in front of the SAS House and opposite the Mosque. It was inaugurated by Maj Gen Raheel Sharif, HI (M), the then Commandant PMA/ Deputy Chairman BOG on Jan 12, 2008. Owing to Sister Tess and May Flanagan’s compassionate and dedicated services for the School, it was renamed as Tess Block in the year 2019.

Sister Tess Flanagan felt the calling to be a missionary at an early age and was blessed by the Lord to begin her missionary service in March 1944. She was appointed at Burn Hall School, and along with her sister, May Flanagan, taught the lower Kindergarten. They passionately served at Burn Hall School till 1965 and then from 1965 to 1996, at St. Mary’s Academy Rawalpindi. They dedicated their entire lives to the education and character building of the Pakistani children. Lt. General Mumtaz Gul, HI(M), (Retd), Lt. General Munir Hafeez, HI(M), (Retd), and Barrister Waseem Sajjad are some of the towering personalities who were blessed to be taught by Sister Tess and May. The services of both the sisters were recognized by the Government of Pakistan when they were awarded Hilal- e- Imtiaz. The College Hospital has been dedicated to the memory of their compassionate services to Burn Hall School.

Johnson Hill (School Hill)

The School Hill is a blessing in the College, overlooking Abbottabad town till as long as Mirpur Ranges of the PMA, Kakul and snow covered peaks of Kaghan and Naran. The hill is covered with densely planted pine trees and nicely placed benches, where students relax and enjoy the bracing breeze. Reportedly, the School Hill, an iconic figure in the Campus was actually conceived, planted, landscaped and developed into a picnic spot by Father Arthur Johnson. Besides, he also looked after the extensive grounds and mowed the grass of the playing fields. Father Arthur Johnson was ordained priest on June 29, 1944 and appointed to the Prefecture of Kafiristan and Kashmir. In the beginning he worked in Chak 36 S.B. near Sargodha. His last years were spent in Burn Hall School, Abbottabad where he served as Housemaster and teacher of English and also directed plays. His Silver Jubilee party was celebrated in Abbottabad on the same Hill. He died in Abbottabad on 3rd January, 1974. Acknowledging his valuable contributions and strong affiliation with the Hill, it has been named as Johnson Hill, in January, 2018 (100 years of his birthday).

Hallians carry nostalgic feelings with the School Hill and have fond memories of their boarding life. Students love to go to the Hill Top to enjoy the cool, fresh breeze and a fantastic view of the College. It also serves as a visitors’ resort for parents on weekends to meet their wards. Recently, students’ café, an apt place for music concerts have added beauty to it. The fascinating landscape is a sign of Father Johnson’s staunch affiliation with Hallians and his ardent love for nature.

Teachers Residential Colony

The Teachers’ Residential Colony was constructed with the genuine purpose to provide much needed on-campus accommodation for the faculty, to provide academic wardens for the evening coaching to boarder students. It was inaugurated by Maj. General Akhtar Nawaz, HI (M), Comdt PMA on Feb 16, 2019. A set of 14 flats is divided into two blocks named as F.X Khan Block and Miss Minto Block respectively. The flats are beautifully designed and impressively furnished. The construction of the faculty accommodation is a sound step towards strengthening the institution.

Miss Minto Block (Miss Imtiaz Minto served from 1948 to 1983)

Miss ImtiazMinto was born and raised in Rawalpindi. She graduated from the University of Punjab and earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Education from Rai Bahadur Sohan Lal Training College for Women. She joined Burn Hall School Abbottabad in February 1948 as a teacher in Mathematics. She shaped the character and future of thousands of students, many of whom are serving among Pakistan’s great leaders. She was not only an inspiration for her students but also a great support for her junior teachers. Throughout her career she worked with passion for the welfare and progress of the School. Owing to her 35 years of fruitful and effective services to the school, the Teachers’ Residential Block has been named as Miss Minto Block.

F.X Khan Block 1920 (served from 1948 to 1983)

Mr. Francis Xavier Khan belonged to Baramulla Kashmir. He completed his early education from St. Joseph’s College Baramulla and received his Master’s Degree in History from Muslim University Aligarh. He joined Burn Hall School in March, 1948 as a teacher in History. He influenced the students deeply with his commendable character and vast knowledge of the subject. He had rich experience of House Administration as well and rendered unparalled services as House Master of Shah Ismail Shaheed House. He served in Burn Hall School till February 1983. In recognition to his undying affiliation and true commitment with the school, the Faculty Accommodation Block has been named as F.X. Khan Block.