History of the Hellenic Community of East London & Districts

The Greek Community of East London was of the first Communities to be founded in the Eastern Cape. The Metropolitan Bishop of Good Hope, Paul Varnavas visited East London personally in 1968 with the sole purpose of uniting all Greek families living in the surrounding areas by forming a Committee. On the 26th February 1969, a gathering was held at the Carlton Hotel in East London and was attended by 30 Greeks from East London, King William’s Town, Fort Beau­fort, Umtata, Mount Freer, Butterworth, Stutterheim and Queenstown. Out of this meeting arose the foundation for a future Hellenic Community of East London. On the 27th April 1969, the First Greek Committee was elected with Christos Yiangou as the President. Members of the first committee consisted of Philip Pouroullis, Stavro Karvounis and Yianni Petrellis.

Of the thirty that attended the gathering at the Carlton Hotel, 15 became registered Community Members and unanimously elected that East London would be the Head Office.

The objectives of this committee were and still are to:

  • Meet the educational needs of members and their families and to promote the Greek Language;
  • To attend to the religious requirements of members and those who profess the Greek Orthodox Persuasion
  • To acquire or erect and maintain a Hellenic Church and/or school, hostel and any other buildings or properties necessary for the proper function of the Community -To co-ordinate all efforts in the collecting and raising of funds, contributions etc., to finance the main and subsidiary objects of the community.

Presidents that served from 1969 to date are Christos Yiangou, Philip Pouroullis, Socratis Yiangou, Stavros Karvounis, Andrea Pouroullis, Nicos Efstratiou, George
Hajiyiannis and the current Presi­dent. Neophytos Kyriakou.

To date, the Community consists of approximately 120 families and our Church, named after St George, is located in St George’s Street with the School sharing the same premises.