At Regent House School we are proud of all our pupils past and present. Throughout our history as Regent House School, Newtownards Intermediate School, Newtownards Academy and The Ladies' School, we have helped shape the minds of some prominent and interesting, contemporary and past characters. Here we feature short profiles on a selection of them.


Dr Nigel Carr

Dr Nigel Carr

Nigel Carr

Nigel Carr (born 27 July 1959) was an Ireland rugby union international who began his Rugby here at Regent House Grammar School, before playing for Queen's University, Ards RFC, Ulster and Ireland in the late 1970s and into the 1980s.  He currently produces and presents UTV sports programme, 'Sport on Sunday'.

Carr has been described as one of the best players to have pulled on the Irish jersey.


Blair Mayne

Blair Mayne

Robert Blair "Paddy" Mayne

Lieutenant Colonel Robert Blair "Paddy" Mayne DSO & Three Bars (11 January 1915 – 14 December 1955) was a British Army soldier, solicitor, Ireland rugby union international, amateur boxer, and a founding member of the Special Air Service (SAS). During the course of the war he became one of the British Army's most highly decorated soldiers. 

He attended our school and it was here that his talent for rugby union became evident, and he played for the school 1st XV and also the local Ards RFC team from the age of 16. While at school he also played cricket and golf, and showed aptitude as a marksman in the rifle club. On leaving school he studied law at Queen's University of Belfast, studying to become a solicitor. He also took up Boxing and became a Cadet Officer while at University.


Eddie Irvine

Eddie Irvine

Eddie Irvine

Edmund "Eddie" Irvine, Jr is a retired British racing driver. He was the runner-up in 1999 Formula One World Drivers' Championship, driving for Ferrari. 

He began his career at the age of seventeen when he entered the Formula Ford Championship achieving early success, before progressing to the Formula Three and Formula 3000 Championships. His most successful season was in 1999 when he took four victories and challenged McLaren driver Mika Häkkinen for the World Championship, eventually finishing the runner-up. Since leaving motorsport, Irvine became a media personality in Britain. He was also linked with the takeover of the Jordan and Minardi teams in 2005, with talks coming to nothing. Irvine also expanded his interests into the property market, having built up an investment during his racing career.


Catherine Milligan

Catherine Milligan

Catherine Milligan

Catherine Milligan was Miss Northern Ireland 2006 and represented us in the Miss World finals in Poland. She won Miss World Talent 2006, placing her in the semi-finals of the competition along with the other Top 16 contestants. She is the first Northern Ireland representative to have won a fast track event at Miss World.

She was Head Girl at Regent House School in 2004/05. 

She went on to study veterinary medicine at University College Dublin


Colin Murray

Colin Murray

Colin Murray

Colin Murray is a sports, music radio and television presenter. In 2010, he became host of BBC Television's Match of the Day 2, while still anchoring shows on BBC Radio 5 Live and 5 Live Sport and Fighting Talk and was still presenting on BBC Radio Ulster. Murray has won three Gold Sony Radio Academy Awards, including Music Broadcaster of the Year in 2007.

Murray first trained and worked as a news journalist. With a passion for both music and sport, he later moved into music journalism and publishing, before making his national radio debut in 1999 on Radio 1 in a short spell co-hosting The Session music show. This was followed by a television debut in 2002 as one of six co-presenters on Channel 4's short-lived morning show RI:SE. Murray is also the Irish Football Association's Football for All ambassador


Jim Allister

Jim Allister

Jim Allister

Jim Allister MLA QC is an Ulster loyalist politician and senior barrister. He is the leader of the Traditional Unionist Voice (TUV) political party, serving as MLA in the Northern Ireland Assembly, where he represents North Antrim. He was formerly a member of the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), for which he successfully stood for election in 2004 to the European Parliament, succeeding Ian Paisley. 

After attending Regent House School he graduated with a Bachelor of Law with Honours in Constitutional Law from Queen's University of Belfast. He was called to the Bar of Northern Ireland as a barrister in 1976, where he specialised in criminal law, and later called to the Senior Bar as a Queen's Counsel; he "took silk" in 2001.


Ottilie Patterson

Ottilie Patterson

Ottilie Patterson

Ottilie Patterson was a blues singer best known for her performances and recordings with the Chris Barber Jazz Band in the late 1950s and early 1960s. Ottilie trained as a classical pianist from the age of eleven. 

In the summer of 1954, while holidaying in London, Ottilie was introduced her to the Chris Barber Jazz Band, which she joined full-time in December that year.