Memories of The King's School
We are indebted to David Richardson, a former pupil at King's School (from 1944 to 1948), for the information on these pages. They were originally part of a website built by David and he has very kindly handed all of the information and archives of photographs over to The Queen's School.
David is still in contact with many ex-pupils and if you would like to contact him directly his email address is email@example.com
Memories shared by past pupil's and staff
Miss Ward, Miss Jordan, Miss Babbage, Miss Alford, Mr. Kemp (Headmaster, Mr. Lugg and Mrs. Rixon taught at the School in the 1930s and can be seen in the Photo Gallery.
Miss Goby is recalled as a 'veritable breath of fresh air by Vicky Quinton (Heaviside) and taught her brother Sam.
Miss Jordan was much loved by generations of Kew children and died at the age of 91. Pat Thomas recalls that she was visiting a hospital and espied an elderly patient who seemed very familiar. Recognition dawned and she approached Miss Jordan who was able to identify Pat immediately
Mr. Kemp, the Headmaster is well remembered by David Richardson for his close attention to the personal hygiene of the children. This included frequent inspection of teeth (and probably backs of necks). Inspection of hair was, however, left to others, frequently with startling results. He is also remembered by others for his readings of extracts from 'Biggles'.
He was succeeded by Messrs. WE Riley (1947-54), FG Harwood (1954-58), G Seddon (1959-?). Mrs Sybil Scroggins (who had been a pupil at King's School) took over in 1968 until 1986 by which time the school had been long established at Cumberland Road.
They can be seen in the Picture Gallery. The three Headmasters were pictured on the occasion of the Dedication Service at the Queen's School, Cumberland Road on 22nd May, 1970
Mrs. Lucy Hodgson was a popular teacher and Deputy Head between 1944 and 1972 and appears frequently in the Picture Gallery. She was also the pianist at morning assembly and happily recalled a small boy who would regularly respond to her requests for suggestions for a suitable hymn. His choice never varied and was for Hymn 181: 'In the graveyard, side by side, lie many well-worn graves'
Mrs. Hodgson died on 30th December, 1996 when she was in her 80s
Mr. Lake can be seen with his class in the Picture Gallery
Mrs. Kaemena was near retirement in the mid-1940s
Mr. Sharrock was a teacher during the 1930s to mid 1940s
Mrs. Douglas is mentioned by David Richardson in his reminiscences below. He apologises in advance for any apparent irreverence. He was between 7 and 11 at the time!
Mrs Nelson is remembered by Ted Cronk
Graham Whitham at Queen's from 1952-59 recalls the Staff during that period
School Headmaster: Mr Harwood Year 1 Miss Jordan Year 2 Mrs Gobey Year 3 Miss Greaves Year 4 Mr Marshall Year 5 Mrs Hodgson Year 6 Mrs Douglas School Secretary: Mrs Picksley
An extract from David Richardson's autobiography 'Mr. Jones From London Town' written long before this Website was considered.......
It was the turn of Kings School (now Queens School and in Cumberland Road) to give me the treatment. Mr. Kemp, the Headmaster was a stern man, very partial to the promotion of hygiene, who inspected teeth regularly. For all I know he might have inspected ears as well but I remember that head inspections, for things that crawl, was a regular feature of the school calendar. I have seen the School’s Journal from this period and it is laced with Mr. Kemp’s fixation for this sort of thing. Unfortunately, it also bears testimony to deaths of children from diphtheria and subsequent attendances at funerals.
However, Mr Kemp obviously had redeeming qualities and is remembered by some ex-pupils for his readings from the Biggles adventure books
The Marchioness of Carisbrooke lived on Kew Green and the Headmaster makes her visits to the School sound like a Royal Progress. This is probably not surprising since she had been Lady Irene Denison when she married Prince Alexander of Battenberg, a grandson of Queen Victoria. The Prince became a Mountbatten in 1917 consequent to the anti-German feeling of the time relinquishing his former German titles and became the Marquess of Carisbrooke. He also held the titles of Viscount Launceston and Earl of Berkhampsted.
I can’t actually remember these visits to the School but Mr Kemp, the Headmaster was clearly deeply impressed and there is little doubt that his visitor had an illustrious background. The School log, however, does give a reminder of the state of the small Kew Green during the War with frequent references to Air Raid Shelter Practice. The Green had been dug out to a substantial depth. I can remember the shelters but not the practices but I’ll bet we all had gas-masks. I later played football on the same spot and recall Mr. Riley, a later Headmaster, graphically demonstrating the dimensions of an acre by lining up the schoolchildren in an appropriately sized square.
Mr. Riley is also remembered for introducing the game of shinty to the school. Shinty is similar to hockey and played with knobbly sticks allowing much potential for damage. I was under the firm belief that we had been told that hitting the ankle in a tackle if the ball was out of reach was regarded as a highly satisfactory ploy. Once again I hadn’t been listening properly and there were a few tearful and limping boys and girls around Kew that afternoon until I was reined in.
An examination of the log of pupils at the time shows clearly the level of movement of children into the School from Inner London, presumably for their safety …….also of Kew children being moved away as evacuees. There seems to be a contradiction here and in some cases the children from the East End were transported by Thamesriver barges to Kew Pier…..
During this period there was plenty of opportunity to explore the area. There was an Italian Prisoner of War Camp on the site now occupied by the Public Records Office and previously the Post Office Savings Bank where Pete Middleton’s mother was the Telephone Exchange Supervisor.
It was not unusual to see a prisoner trotting around Kew. It must have been much more preferable to fighting a War. Pat Rosier, also an ex-pupil at King’s School recalls that the camp was run by the United States Army who ensured that the local children became aware of the delights of Hershey bars. Pat’s husband’s research indicates that the Italians were probably captured in 1943/4 during the Sicily campaign. At a Christmas party the children they were presented with books and Pat was to treasure a publication by E.M.Nesbit. Pat also recalls the Kew Green Air Raid Shelter by its odour and this observation is frequently repeated whenever Air Raid Shelters are discussed by those who sampled them. Betty Timms (now Mrs Gore) recalls that her shelter was frequently used from late afternoons until the following morning and Len Timms later with me at the Grammar School was a frequent overnight inhabitant and subjected to a thorough scrubbing from his Mother at the kitchen table before being released the following morning…….Betty was also at the VE celebrations in Alexandra Road mentioned elsewhere and, being eight years older than Mr. Jones, was given licence by Muriel to push him around in a pram but only within the confines of Alexandra Road. If I ever end up in a wheelchair I’ll know who to ask………
Pat was acutely aware that people ‘knew their place’. A neighbour was a Headmistress who employed a maid for 2 shillings and sixpence a week with accommodation
I don’t think I’m mistaken when I recall convalescing Allied servicemen being attired in light blue suits, white shirts and red ties.
The camp was not far from the Marigold Paper Shop owned by the Killick family who also had the Post Office at the Mortlake Road traffic lights. The Marigold was on the corner of Forest Road and Mortlake Road and Pete Middleton worked there as a paper boy when he wasn’t falling in the pond. Mortlake Road is the South Circular Road and presumably the 1930’s equivalent of the M25. Drivers have cursed their way up and down it ever since as they have on the Great West Road (A4)which was opened in May, 1925. Much the same can be said about the Great Chertsey Road A316 which never actually made it to Chertsey before the M3 was opened.
The Thames had flooded Kew in 1928 (and subsequently) and the waters had reached the bottom of LeybornePark, just across the road. The fact used to be recorded on a fence-post but renewal appears to have lost this interesting memento.
At the rear of Leyborne Park backing on to Cumberland Road lay the threatening, unlit and high-walled ‘Cut Throat’ Alley, broken only by ancient and mysterious back-doors. The myth surrounding the name has now been well and truly debunked by Mike Collett, an ex-pupil of King’s School who assures me that it was originally ‘Cut Through’ Alley. Whichever way you look at it kids of the day were big ‘scrumping’ enthusiasts and many fruit trees overhung the walls and the aura of the place is not diminished by Mike’s explanation. It is much the same today, although the back-doors are now festooned, with graffiti and has been named after a Mr. Attwood, a very prominent Kew land-owner of earlier times..
However, I was fully rewarded when I scrumped immediately opposite St. Luke’s School and met an Alsatian for the first time (remember I’m good with animals)………The Alsatian had been specially released to give me a welcome…It did……and I had teeth-marks on my back-side for weeks. But I did have a junior sprinting record alas never ratified……….. Sheer fright was to have a liberating effect on my bowels.……… Happy days were here again…!!!!!!!!……and, on top of all this, a lecture on the general immorality and peril of pinching other people’s property, from the old man. I got the message, don’t go scrumping any more and have crossed the road to avoid large dogs, off the lead, ever since…………..
This particular site has now been turned into a public garden of repose, complete with rustic seating and bears no resemblance to the stage that had such memories for the youthful Mr Jones. A plaque on the wall indicates the inspiration behind the project but those involved would have had little idea of the deep significance of the area. An additional plaque dedicated to the offensive powers of alsatians would be entirely appropriate, although bound to be confusing to the passer-by.
I walked to school and normally went down Kew Gardens Road to Kew Road, and, passing Newens, famous for Maids of Honour cakes (and still at it) made my way beyond the small Green to the School at the far right hand corner of the Pond. Pete Middleton and I were in Newens recently on a nostalgia trip and the tariff had me reaching for my Switch card…….
Somehow I had managed to chat up the lady driver of the School Meals van to get lifts back to school among the tins in the back. Peter Casey has reminded me that we both came home to lunch (dinner in those times) and were able to cajole the driver who, in due course, turned out to be the mother of a later footballing team-mate, Eddie (Lilley, I think from Dancer Road) at Petersham & Ham Juniors. I did meet the lady some time after and she remembered the whole thing. In these modern times of stringent regulation schoolboys would never be able to avail themselves of such a favour.
Manya Hughes lived in Cumberland Road with her brother Michael and later moved to Pampisford Road, Purley. She was also very pretty. So were Anita Bennett and the Smith twins. I wonder what happened to them……………
The teachers come easily to mind. Miss Jordan (who died in the mid 90’s at the age of 91), Mr Sharrock, Mrs Rixen, Mrs. Kaemena who I think was close to retirement. This quartet had all been at the school pre-war, as had the Headmaster Mr. Kemp already mentioned. Mrs Hodgson (wife of Joe, my future Richmond Cricket captain, (although I wasn’t to know it at the time) and mother of Tony (A.J.A. also to become a Shene pupil), was patient and encouraging. And, not to be forgotten, Mrs. Douglas who had a habit of sitting on the front desk with her knees up when she addressed the class. To a collection of small boys, and one in particular, this was an intrigue not to be overlooked and there was much dropping and picking up of pencils while we discovered, with some certainty, exactly what Mrs Douglas wore underneath her skirt.
Kings School was old, and, on three floors. All classrooms were reached from a single, narrow staircase and I seem to remember that this was the only access. I don’t know what the modern-day authorities would have made of it and it was probably a fireman’s nightmare, fortunately never put to the test. The interior was of unplastered, painted brick and was probably dark green and cream. I have no way of knowing.
When I left I was certainly competent in the 3 Rs and had good command of English Grammar. I had taken the Entrance Exam for Grammar Schools at just under 10, when I was clearly not ready but coped well the second time and was on my way soon after my 11th birthday.
The area around the school, immediately adjacent to the River Thames, is still recognisable today and the shop near Kew Bridge where we used to buy pomegranates for 1d (until we found out how boring they were) is now a tea-shop in the row of cottages apparently built for the soldiers returning from the Battle of Waterloo. In 2004 pomegranates were regarded as the ‘in’ fruit being rich in antioxidants. Even this accolade does not tempt me back.
Autumn leaves piled high in the corner made by the bridge steps meant we could squeeze between the railings and enjoy a soft landing.
The route to the school never changes…but the volume of cars in the surrounding leafy streets has overcome the area and the School site which was levelled in the summer of 1970 is now occupied by expensive town houses.
The University Boat Race generated great enthusiasm within the School and the children quickly decided whether they were Oxford or Cambridge and for weeks in advance would display allegiance to their chosen colours. Cross-oar favours were in great demand. This affinity can only have come from the colour choice – I can’t think that any of us really knew where Oxford and Cambridge were….but although we would have know that the Universities were in competition, few of us aspired to get to one as part of our education at this stage of our academic careers.
The Kew Boy’s Annual Cricket Match also followed the Oxbridge theme and the teams turned out on the large Green with appropriate rosettes.
Kew Green is surrounded by period houses, once occupied by the court officials attending the later Georges who were resident in Kew Palace. The Palace is still to be seen within Kew Gardens and is open to the public. Kew Green and St. Anne’s church (where Pete was a leading choirboy) have never lost their charm and the graveyard adjacent to the War Memorial contains the graves of Gainsborough and Zoffany.
Zoffany’s painting of The Last Supper was destined to be hung in St. George’s Church at Brentford since it depicted a local Kew worthy as Judas Iscariot and was consequently rejected by Kew. St. George’s Church was to become the Piano Museum which has now been re-sited and still very close to the original site.
Pissarro was also a frequent visitor to Kew and lived on the corner of Gloucester Road in 1892, adjacent to the Coach & Horses. He could not have imagined that this place of inspiration would be a United Dairies outlet in Mr. Jones’s day and become the shop of a fabric retailer in 2003.
Today’s view towards the Thames is marred by charmless Brentford tower blocks.
My days at Kings School never seemed a hardship and my sporting instincts (among others) were stirring. We played football against schools from Richmond and Ham and I skippered from centre-forward………I was less than 5 ft at the time, and nothing like Alan Shearer……..and led the line in my buckled glasses. On one occasion, against St. Andrews at Ham Common, I turned out in my underpants………Mum had mislaid my shorts.
St. Andrews School is now a Roman Catholic church
We lost 0-3 and, despite the importance of the occasion, I spent the match intent on not giving a memorable display. The entire St. Andrews School (it was mixed, as was ours) had turned out for the match and my concentration was definitely affected…….. This could have been a tragic event in my development but I am quite happy to give a memorable display these days whenever invited.
In the photograph that can be seen in the Picture Gallery everyone is looking at the camera, and I am looking at both the camera and my nose. Mr. Jones is on the extreme left of the front row. I was still quite a long away from my eye operation at the Royal Hospital at Richmond.
An article in the Daily Telegraph a few years ago told of the current Queens School headmaster who was then nurturing a Rugby League team at the school. This group of youngsters was more like a representative world thirteen being of many creeds, hues and shades and my homing instinct was stirred sufficiently to write to the Head and advise him of my own distinction as ex-footie captain. An invitation to peruse the School archives followed but, alas, there were no photographs. The Football XI photograph was to arrive unexpectedly from Alan Wicks who is standing next to Mr. Ryder on the right of the back row. I hadn’t seen this team group for 55 years.
I was, however, able to examine and copy the complete record of starters and leavers from the 30’s onwards and this provides a fascinating record of the Kings School children during my tenancy. I have already told of the school Journal, maintained by the Headmaster, which contained much information about school activities.
I was thus in a position to list the intake of pupils and to later trace a considerable number of them to enable me to organise a Reunion in 2006. I have also built a Website that is providing a link to a Kew long gone but well remembered by many.
The Times Crossword 23177 published on January 4th, 2006 provided an interesting connection to this volume when 5 down was ‘King’s School employing a comedian’. The answer was ‘Keaton’. Nothing too remarkable about that but the same crossword also posed at 18 across ‘Sold off a strange ruined site’. The answer: Old Sarum. The significance of this will become more clear to the reader when the tales of Mr. Jones in the Royal Air Force are explored.
When I wasn’t playing football and going over Kew Bridge on my bike with Dad to see Brentford in the old First Division, I was getting involved with cricket, the local Scouts and the St. Luke’s Church Choir.
Going to Brentford for the match was an adventure and either involved the 65 bus, the bike, or just good old-fashioned walking usually via Green Dragon Lane, past a row of tiny cottages by the Water Works (Brenda Clark’s future husband came from here)…. An alternative would be via Brentford High Street, past the frontage of the Water Works and the high tower, (still a landmark), and the church that is now the Musical Museum and soon to be rehoused, thence to Ealing Road. The area was entirely dominated by the sight, sound and odour of the Gasworks that had originated in 1820 and grown in size as The Brentford Gas company until it occupied both sides of the High Street until it closed in the 1960s.
During times of shortage it was not unusual to see queues of people seeking supplies of coke from the Works and these were to lengthen when Richmond Gasworks were unable to supply their usual quotas.
Any of the streets of tightly huddled terraced houses on the Brentford side of the High Street would provide a detour to the ground. These have long been demolished and the cosy streets replaced by featureless dwellings and tower blocks. Kew Bridge teemed with omnibuses also trolley buses that accelerated at fierce speed. If you were not sitting down when the trolley started, you could expect a rough ride indeed.
They were the days of 30,000 crowds, mostly standing and in the open air, although Brentford could boast two covered sides of the ground. Kids were handed over the tops of the adults to a safer place on the other side of the enclosure railings…….I have personal experience………Bikes would be left in the front garden of a house in Ealing Road and an early arrival meant that it became the foundation for others stacked up against the house wall. You could expect a long wait to retrieve it. The house-owner must have made a killing. He wouldn’t now………!!!
Brentford had an ageing team…..they still had some of their pre-war players and some big names of the time. George Wilkins, father of Butch played at inside forward and the names quickly come to mind………. Crozier, Gorman, Holliday, Leslie Smith……….and Dai Hopkins (a proper Welshman and an international) was an exciting right winger. When Wolverhampton Wanderers visited Griffin Park I wasn’t there and my recall is that Brentford were slaughtered 1-4 and Stan Cullis (later their manager), a no-nonsense centre-half for the Wanderers, was booed all afternoon and the derision from Griffin Park could be clearly heard at Victoria Parade. I must have been in hot water again…….I don’t know why I wasn’t at Griffin Park.
But worse than this, Mike Collett, a Shene Old Boy says that he was there, Brentford won 4-1 and he is even able to name the goalscorers…………….!! Even after all this time I feel better that Brentford won although, in the end, it made little difference since they slipped into the Second Division that season when the Football League had resumed after the war and were relegated with Leeds United. They have never been back…………. and the Premiership is but a dream……and why has my memory let me down…………..?
Kings School won 3 out of 4 matches…….you already know about the fourth…..and my sports mania was launched. In 1948 Denis Compton and Bill Edrich were to make in excess of 3000 runs each in a summer of gloriously hot weather, when the intense heat was to raise, the wooden blocks from the tar on the Brentford side of Kew Bridge………. The Australians were touring……and, they swept all before them… including Compton and Edrich !
Chris Holland ( a pupil in 1953 remembers the Coronation when the children were issued with 'ration books' for food and free rides at the Fair)
Mr Riley was the Head when I was there, and I know he was replaced by a Mr Harwood.
My teachers were: Year 1: Mrs Jordan (known to my family as Nin, she used to cat-sit for us when we went on holiday, even after my father retired and my parents moved to Midhurst). Year 2: Mrs Nelson Year 3: Miss Goby: who wore flowered, flared skirts with many layers of petticoats Year 4: Mrs Hodgson Year 5: Mr Marshall (I believe Deputy
Head at the time ca 1954/5) Top Class: Mrs Douglas who I remember chiefly for her red hair, or am I imagining it after all these years? I certainly remember her as being strict and free with the ruler across the palm of the hand.
I also remember a dinner lady called Mrs Yewen. She also used to look after our cat on occasion and I seem to remember she had a couple of boys at the school too.
There was a back staircase as well as the one that used to lead up from near the cloakrooms. If you went round past the boys' lean-to loos, there was a back gate (always locked), but with another staircase by it. I seem to recall that it was only used by the top two classes.
There was a flag-pole in one corner of the playground that used to fall over at more or less regular intervals as it was wooden and did not seem to be proofed in any way. It was close to where I broke my collar bone, being knocked over as a result of playing 'chain-he'.
I wonder what the H&S Exec would now think of our all-tarmac playground with bare brick walls.
The goal posts were slung on large hooks against the wall by the factory.
More worrying thoughts come to me. Several boys (including me) somehow
or other acquired some live rounds and we tried very hard with bits of brick and nails to set them off. Luckily we did not succeed. One chap had 'liberated' a Luger (presumably a war souvenir of his father's) and brought that in. He of course was everyone's hero for a week or two.
I can't remember many names of my contemporaries, most of the ones I can
also went on to Shene, but of the girls there were: Christine Eaton, Sandra Richardson (with her brother Michael, whose parents owned the ironmongers at the end of the Parade), Vicky Quentin, Jennifer Riley (Head's daughter), Judith and Rosemary Charles, Phillipa Drew (+ a younger sister, father in FO), Annette B?? (later a girl friend of Ian Maitland). There are more at the edge of my memory, perhaps they'll come back later.
Of the boys there was David Patterson (his father was also in the FO and they built a house on the little green), Ian Ruxton, Roy Langmaid, David Mann, Ian Maitland, Tony Newe(a)ll and brother, John Galbraith, Michael Chimonas, David Gaunt, Peter Flewitt, Roger Ward (from the butchers Ithink), Robert Riddell, Brian East.
I don't remember any photos being taken at the school except the semi-annual portrait, presumably there must have been some, even if just more of the footie team.
Peter Abigail in response to David Richardson's request for VE memories for inclusion in a commemorative Surrey Comet supplement
Hi David. Thank you for the opportunity to contribute to the supplement for V.E.Day. I do remember the day very well, the street party in Cambridge Cottages, flags and streamers going from house to house across the street, trestle tables down the centre of the road loaded with food, which came from God knows where. I can't remember anything specific other than this...I'm sorry my memory is not better. However I do have vivid memories of sitting at my bedroom window at night, (in Watcombe Cottages), watching our bombers following the Thames on their way to Germany. I would count them, then, in the morning, they would wake me up on their way back and I would count them again. At breakfast I would tell Dad how many planes we had lost and we would wait for the news to see how accurate I was. Nine times out of ten I was within a plane or two. I hope this trivia may bring back memories for some other people.
James (Jimmy) Russell............Have just spent half an hour scanning your excellent King's School Kew site and I shall go back to it as I will to East Sheen Old Boys.
I was born in July 1933 and was at King's School from about 1938 – 1944. I managed to get a scholarship to Richmond and East Sheen County Grammar but left when I was about 15.
I was registered at King’s School by my Dad, Alek when we lived at Bushwood Road but later lived at 39 Priory Road and well remember hours spent in the air raid shelters on the small green. My Mum plied us with tomato sandwiches. The tomatoes she grew herself but heaven knows from where she got the bread and the margarine. We were not allowed home until the ‘All Clear’ went.
School days were not my happiest - I was not the brightest of pupils and hundreds of incendiary bombs in Kewand land mines at Strand-on- Green which blew our windows in did not help. Kew was the escape route for the German bombers who used The Thames as a navigational aid and dropped their load when things got too hot for them. I was evacuated twice, originally Burnley thence to Ewhurst where we wrote with slate and pencil due to paper shortage.
I well remember 'dog fights' between German and Allied fighters over Kew, the thunder of anti-aircraft guns in Bushey and Richmond Parks, and the trails of military vehicles on Kew Road en route to the South Coast in 1944 in preparation for D Day - although at that time we had no idea of their purpose. I also remember the Italian prisoners of war and the American soldiers who gave us sweets (yes, that was a time that when you could accept sweets from a strange man) and packets of powdered eggs. The 'Billy Angel Gang' (whoever they were) used to visit Kew from the other side of the river and caused some disquiet.
All was not doom and gloom, however! Many good friends were made. Malcolm Atkinson with whom I am still in close contact and many others with whom I have long ago lost touch: Betty Attfield, Gerry Fitch, Geoffrey Beldon (whose father owned the only motor car in the street) and Barry Bryan (whose father had one leg), Teddy Cronk who I have bumped into in recent years, are some names that I can remember. I am not sure if they all went to 'King's' or to the Church Youth Club in Gloucester Road, Kew, which played a big part in our lives. My short membership of the choir at St. Anne’s Church has its own story.
I well remember Mrs. Perks, a milk lady who was pleased to have me pushing her three solid-wheeled milk trolley during WW2. Mr Perks was ‘off at the war’. During the icy conditions that seemed much more frequent than today the trolley needed to be rescued from the gutter by many willing hands. I graduated to a butcher’s bike with a great big wicker basket over the front wheel but cannot be sure exactly when.
I became a cadet in 144 Squadron, Air Training Corps and remember Johnny Thorne, Flight Sergeant. We were to become involved with Tiger Moths and Avro Ansons at RAF Kenley and glider flying in Kirby Cadet single seaters (Safety at Work?) and also being aloft in T21B Sailplanes
I would certainly be interested in going to a 'King's' Reunion.
Peter Casey (in a correspondence with David Richardson)............
.Interesting glimpse of the past, although I don't really think I was a bully. I can think of many Kewites including Mick Buckley, Brian Austin, Joyce Cooper, Ronnie Howe, Tony Pearson, Brian Caswell. . In the Picture Gallery I noticed a lovely little girl called Doreen Pegg, who arrested my attention around 1946-47. Another was Dorothy Dudley. It is a shame that there aren't any photos of our class, although I did spot Alex Timpson
I looked unhappy in the football photo because you were made captain and not me. I fancy this might have been influenced by Mrs Douglas…? I wasn’t her favourite pupil! Nevertheless, very nostalgic and my appetite is whetted and I’ll bet I can still draw better footballers than you!
After the Grammar School at East Sheen I started work in August, 1954 at Weatherby and Sons, printers to the Jockey Club and in 1960 became a member of The Association of Correctors of The Press, a proof reader no less… something must have stuck during those years at King’s and Shene because I remained in print for the duration of my working life, via Herts., Bucks., South Africa, Surrey, Welshpool in Powys, Shrewsbury, where I had my own company, and lastly, Telford.
and Peter Casey (1942-1948)
in full flow...........talks of "pleasant memories and a freedom gone forever....................."
my brother Laurence (1937-1941) and sister Maureen (1940-1943) both preceded me at the School. Maureen recalls Ronnie Abigail well.
My first memory is a visit to Richmond Hospital for the removal of a piece of school chalk that was firmly wedged up my nose. My sister was brought from the the top class to take me. My second memory is another visit to the same hospital for 5 stitches over my left eye after I hit the boys' lavatory wall at high speed during a game of 'chaino or release'
Pea-souper fogs were very prevalent during those early years and I can remember the conductor of a 65 walking in front of it in Kew Road.....it was that thick. Recall also summons up the small businesses under the arches of Kew Bridge and one in particular that made and painted toy bricks of all shapes and sizes, some of which were dumped outside, avidly collected by us young scavengers. I absolutely detested milk at break times and avoided it like the plague. I also recall tearing up and throwing away the permission note for me to have the diphtheria jab. I was terrified but did succumb to the polio-dosed sugar knob later.
Lessons are pretty vague yet I can remember lots of labels from tins of fruit from all over the world and thinking how fantastic they were. I was very fond of Geography and History intrigued me also, especially at Kew, when after a project, a boy or boys in collaboration with one called Michael Barrett (very quiet and studious) came up with the place at Brentford where one of the Caesars and Roman infantry forded the river: whether or not that was why Brentford got its name, I do not know.
Football always took precedence over everything in those early days and I can still remember playing on Kew Green after the shelters had been filled in, carrying the goal posts across from the school. I can remember the majority of the lads who played, Barry and Victor Humphries, Alan Wicks (we used to play table tennis at his house in Mortlake Road next to the car factory - Dodge, I believe), the Hornsby brothers, Graham Tooth, Brian Abigail (he lived alongside the towpath and our parents were great friends, Hugh Williams, I think, Hugh Colley (not sure), David (Taffy later) Richardson. The only one I'm not sure of is sitting at the end of the centre row in the photograph. He must have been from a lower class. Was his name Mann..?
I still support the 'Gooners' (Arsenal).
I can remember having to walk to and from school and home to dinner! (it must have been 1 1/2 miles one way) with a boy from our road (Windsor) called Raymond Monger and his two young twin brothers, Ronnie and Alan. Alan, I recall suffered from bad sinuses or similar and prior to setting off, had to have his nostrils cleared . His elder brother was a wonderful storyteller and kept us entranced all the way to school.
I was also a passenger on the school dinner van if I could get down to St. Luke's School in time as did David Richardson.
Newens, the cake shop in Kew Road is already mentioned in the extract from David Richardson's Mr. Jones From London Town and we took refuge there sometimes when the sirens went......and there were always a few cakes over from the day before.
I also remember Michael Buckley. He came from East London to Priory Road and we were great pals. I went back with him to the East End one week-end on the Tube and met lots of his family living in tight knit 2 up 2 down terraced houses that fronted onto the pavement..something like parts of Kew near the school..but more intense with the local pub at the end of the road. I remember him going into the Merchant Navy and learning to play the clarinet.
With doubt the cleverest boy in our class was Anthony Pearson (he went to Shene Grammar at the same time as myself and David Richardson) and shone there too. He had a younger brother who was very academic also. Harry Martens also comes to mind and he went to Shene as well. I also recall Ronnie Howe.
I also sadly remember the accidental death of Jean Campbell who was unfortunately hit by a car after running out from behind a bus. Her father was the Curator of Kew Gardens, I believe.
Mrs Douglas is well remembered for her expertise with her ruler and tongue. She announced in class those children that had passed their 11-plus. Mine was the last name read out and she said with disdain...."and with just 100 marks, Peter Casey!" I didn't even want to go to the blooming school. All my mates were going to Gainsborough School, just one road away from my house. But I had to go all the way to Sheen. Anyway, at the time my Mum was chuffed. So it was a good result but I've never been exactly thankful to Mrs Douglas.
I can also remember Arthur Williams, a fellow cyclist in later years and an apprentice boat builder at Richmond Bridge who had a lovely mum who was possibly disabled. Arthur was a really nice bloke.
I also recall playing tea-chest bass at a 'do' at the Hotel at the foot of Kew Bridge with Arthur and Michael Goodchild, who if I remember correctly was the boyfriend of Manya Hughes. I think his family were connected to Flanagan and Allen but I can't say how.
Other children who spring to mind are Dorothy Dudley, Joyce Cooper, Peter Middleton, Johnny Collett, Brenda Murphy, Keith Lambeth (a decent cricketer), Brian Austin, Brian Caswell and the Humphries brothers. Also June and Teddy Cronk (good athletes, I remember).
I can also recall going home to dinner one day and, as we reached the traffic lights at Kew/Mortlake Road, we saw American solders absolutely immaculate in white helmets, gaiters and gloves marching along Kew Road to take up residence at the POW camp in Mortlake Road. Many a piece of sugar candy was scrounged from the friendly GIs.
I suppose, all in all, it was quite an idyllic childhood, loads to do, very little danger, many places to explore, including Kew Gardens, the 'ha ha' stream alongside the river, Richmond Park and Sheen Common, North Sheen Rec.... and even a cycle track near the Chertsey Road bridge which was absolutely fantastic.
There was a bus terminus on Kew Green adjacent to Gloucester Road: where they came from or went to totally escapes me but I can remember collecting the spent tickets while the driver and conductor were having a cuppa in the cafe opposite in a parade of shops. There was also a 'Tardis' on the corner.................
I have enjoyed composing a snapshot of my memories of King's School, Kew and hope they will stir memories in others.
Editor's Note: Peter took exception to the editing of his contributions and to my own reminiscences which included a reference to him to which he took offence and which was quickly removed from this page. To set the record straight his reactions, by e-mail, are included here: Any offence is much regretted and was unintended.
YOU'VE LOST THE PLOT!
Many thanks for the long-awaited reply, albeit a conglomeration of ignominious, puerile diarrhoea.
You have no idea of my style 50 or so years ago or now, and until my sister mentioned your name a few years back, I had never given you a second thought, and neither did I after your name was mentioned. You appear to have been the one that has garnered your own self-doubt and loathing, harbouring innocuous childhood memories that seem to have eaten away at you like a cancer all this time. So sad.
I am sorry that you found my childhood memories so crass, or crap as you put it, that you deemed it necessary to alter them so severely, but they were and still are a true reflection of those early years of my life as I remember them, or the were until you bastardised them.
I am sure that the "Michael Barretts and Peter Penneys" of our con-joined early years appreciate your efforts, but that's all it is, appreciation! Don't get carried away, and above all, keep it true, otherwise you'll incur other people's wrath , as you have incurred mine.
Should you wish to print any of the following, please feel free, as long as you don't edit it or sanitise it in any way, shape or form, to your own way of thinking.
Memo to the King's School, Kew website, from PJCasey
I have taken umbrage at the way in which the editor of this website has altered beyond recognition my early memories of those years spent at King's, and he has given me permission to state my case.
Free speech in a democracy, as long as it isn't libellous, is everyone's gift in this country, surely? I don't think that anything that I said in those memories was insulting, made up or lies. I happened to mention that a boy called Harold Maartens, in my opinion, was the most obnoxious boy in the school; I also said that Miss Douglas was, again as far as I was concerned, a nasty, spiteful and vindictive person. These are but two examples of how I saw things then, and as you can read on the site, how they were "sanitised", as the editor put it to me in an e-mail. To my way of thinking, he made my notes very bland, uninteresting and wrong. If you have read the extract from "Mr Jones goes to London Town" you will have noticed that the editor takes time out to castigate me as some little bully, his nemesis as it were, feeling quite free to say just what he wants, yet when it comes to my turn, my thoughts are edited.
Websites on old school history, or anything else for that matter, are fine, and are obviously appreciated by many others, notwithstanding myself, reaching their latter years and having time to surf the net and reminisce.
I am afraid though, that when someone such as our revered editor spouts on about "skippering the football team from centre forward" (How egotistical can you get?), apologises for trying to look up Ms Douglas' skirt, excusing himself for only being seven or eight years old, and then preaching to me about his mastery of the English language (so fine and eloquent that it would appear only foreign students learning English parrot-fashion can understand him), steam begins to rise and I get rather annoyed, that he's had the audacity to question my motives for attacking him personally. This banter isn't about some long-held childhood grudge you've resurrected or held for so long, or one that you think I've held, it's about principle. So, do the right thing, and apologise, in print.
PS Look out on the 27th April, I might just pop in and bite yer bum!
From: Peter Casey
To: David Richardson
Cc: David Richardson
Sent: Friday, March 17, 2006 7:59 PM
Subject: RTT. . . Faux pas, par excellence!
Oh dear! The"skipper" cannot remember the names of his team. How embarrassing! What will the Society think? Not only that, he gets Kings School mixed up with Queens School in the photograph caption, notwithstanding the date and address.
Let's give you a clue, Mr Jones. Victor Humphries was our centre half, pictured in the back row next to his brother, Pat. The other lad was from a class below ours and a young gun, brought in to bolster our weak centre forward!
I must say, I'm extremely disappointed in the non-response from you. It does seem to confirm my earlier thoughts that you are as ignoble now as then.
Criticism and home truths are hard to bear, but we all have to swallow sometimes. Let's hope they keep a welcome in the hillsides for you. I can't see anyone else waiting for you when you step down from the train. Is this adieu, mon brave?
Valerie Horwill (1931-40).............supplied by The Museum Of Richmond
The teachers I remember at the school were Mr Kemp, Miss Jordan and Mrs Rixon. We wore gym slips for school but had no real school uniform.
The classrooms were separated by sliding partitions. We sat at desks in rows.
We had sports days held on Kew Green and went swimming in the Richmond baths. For cookery lessons we went to Eton Street on the bus.
Editor's Note: You can see Valerie in the Picture Gallery
Ron Draper (1940-41)...................supplied by The Museum Of Richmond
Mr Kemp was the Headmaster when I was at King's School. I was there during the War and remember a few daylight Air Raids during which we used the shelters on Kew Green.
The School was a very tall building with a small playground by Kew pond. I am sure my form mistress was Mrs. Rixon.
Joan Elizabeth Woodhams (nee Morsman) (1951-58).……………………..supplied by The Museum Of Richmond
As a small child at Queen’s School, I thought it was a very tall building, but nicely situated near the Kew pond and green. It was not far from where I lived in Forest Road and I used to walk down Bushwood Road. I always went home for lunch and in my early years was met outside school by my mother. However as I got older I went on my own and often at lunchtimes, going home, I would along with others, hitch a lift on the milk cart. We sat on the milk crates and it was great fun. School milk arrived each day in one third pint bottles and invariably these were always warm by break time. I used to avoid drinking mine, although we were supposed to, and would give it to someone else to drink - warm creamy milk not appealing to me. We used to have playtime and I would bring a large rope from home and the girls lined up, did skipping songs and ran through the rope. It was a pastime I greatly enjoyed. Another was handstands up the playground wall the only problem here being that the boys were always present to spy the girls knickers. The toilets were situated in the playground - the Boys were nearer to the school than the Girls which were down the playground more. These consisted of about three cubicles each side with painted green doors - no lights as I can remember and the rain often coming into them. It was very cold to visit in the winter.
I can remember the vicar The Reverend Clifford Pronger coming to give us lessons in Religious Knowledge and several teachers - Miss Jordan, Miss Nelson, Mrs Hodgson, Mrs Douglas and Mr Marshall. I remember Mrs Douglas as being tall and thin and always smartly dressed.
The first class I entered at the school seemed great fun - we had a sand box - a shop - water etc. and pupils used to take it in turns to have a go at everything. I always enjoyed the shop. Art classes were also fun - we had easels each with big sheets of paper and brushes and water paints. We also used plasticine. I can also remember the lovely feeling of being given new exercise books. These were always well used and we recorded the weather at the back of an exercise book used for another subject and the book would be turned upside down to enter it. We didn’t often have games outside or go on any walks. Occasionally we would go on Kew Green in the summer for games. We used to have red, blue, yellow and green bands to wear over our top halves. Green was always last. I always seemed to be in the green team!
I also remember quite large classes in terms of pupil numbers and pupils being asked to clean the blackboard and give out books. They were called monitors. In my final year I was privileged sometimes to ring the school bell which was a large brass hand bell with a wooden handle. I would ring this out of the window in the morning, and at lunchtimes to call pupils in for afternoon sessions. It used to worry me that I might drop it out of the window one day on to someone’s head but fortunately I never did. We all sat at desks with lids - some single and some with two desks joined with a bench seat attached. I also remember having someone from the police come and talk to us all about road safety and give us little books and drawings about it.
Punishment was quite often meted out to pupils - often the boys more than girls in the form of rapping over the knuckles with a ruler and in Mr Marshall’s class I can remember he used to make us stand on our seats and would slap us on our backs. Mrs Douglas had a thin bendy cane.
I also remember when nurses used to come and the pupils had to wait in turn for a medical check. Each head would be checked and they would also look down our knickers - something I could never understand why they did. I did not enjoy this medical checkup at all.
We all learnt our tables ‘parrot’ fashion calling out in class in unison. Writing was done with a nibbed pen and inkwell and letters had to be formed precisely with top and bottom of letters such as f g t y had to be within certain lines. Writing had to be joined up and was rather loopy. I can also remember learning basic french words in our final year and it was very helpful at my next school to have learnt several words and numbers.
In 1952 for the Coronation I can remember the children going round to the Hall in Gloucester Road and each being given a Coronation mug and a long tin containing chocolate.
The headmaster was Mr Harwood and his wife presented me with the prize in my final year (Junior 4) for the most outstanding girl - Martin Gates- Sumner was given the prize for the most outstanding boy. This prize was given along with another prize at the school prizegiving held in the Boathouse Hotel by the river just by Kew Bridge adjacent to the fun fair that was there at that time. Prizes were presented by Mrs Harwood and I can remember not believing it was me that had been chosen for such a prize. We even had our pictures taken and put in the local paper.
Pupils in my class I remember are: Judith Charles, Stewart Clapson, Susan Farmer,Stephen Austin, Joseph Orr, Christopher Ginn, Daryl Fowler, Martin Gates-Sumner, Maryanne Brewer, Barrie Parsons, Keith Rose, Graham Witham, Diane Phillips, Jill Kirkbright, Rosalind Luke, Catherine Timmins, Susan Barrett, Rosalin Tovell, Norma Anderson, Ann Kendall, Anna Webb and Robert Riddell.
Other pupils I remember are: Brenda Nash, Penny Durrant, Susan Jackson, Barbara Tyrell, Richard Kent, Jane Morris, Paula Grainger, John Abbett.
I took the 11 plus and moved on to Richmond County Girls School. I remember Queens School days as very happy days and am very pleased to have had a good grounding in the three ‘Rs’.
Editor's Note: In October, 2006 Joan wrote...............Many thanks for replying to my e-mail and giving me the correct web address. I have already been in to the site and much enjoyed it though I have still more to read. I do in fact appear in your memories section and I was thrilled to find the memories I did for the Richmond Museum some years ago. I went along to the Museum's exhibition of schooldays but alas did not meet anyone I knew. My name was Morsman and it was interesting to see a small item from Graham Whitham who I remember well.
I lived in Forest Road next door but one to Stewart Clapson who also went to Queen's School. It was interesting to hear from Brian Caswell of the reunion and I would be interested in the next one if I am invited. It is lovely to remember primary school days which for me were very happy times and I used to ride home at lunchtime sometimes on the milk float sitting on the bottles - not something that would be allowed now!
I remember Paula Grainger but would not recognise her from the 2006 reunion photo. My good friend was Judith Charles and I knew her sister Rosemary of course who was just a bit older than us. I will visit your site again when time permits and read more. My late father also went to Kings School -I suppose it must have been around 1913 /1914. I dont suppose you have his name listed or any photos. His name was Douglas Morsman.
Peter Abigail's reminiscences included on the previous (now defunct) Website...........
I found your website very interesting particularly the photos of Kew. I was back there in 1978 and again in 2001. The school had gone by then, of course. I was a bit disappointed but I guess that’s progress. My fond memories of School, (until you told me I didn’t know it was called Kings School so I’m going well) are in and out of the Air Raid Shelter and driving the teachers mad running around in this rabbit warren of a construction on Kew Green which we thought was good sport at the time.
Another trick was to make holes in your gas mask to wangle a bus pass to Richmond to get it repaired which would take up the best part of half a day that you were not in school.
These were worrying times if you were an adult and knew the consequence of war, but to a kid, (I was 7 in 1939) it was all good fun. Then the US services came which was another chapter in Kew’s history.
I visited New Zealand in 1968 -1969 and whilst buying a cafe and a sandwich in Auckland was given the once-over by the cashier/owner. He was able to recall my name and former address in Kew
After telling me his name and former address, I recognized John Lewis. The last time I saw John was when he left school at 14 yrs to join the Merchant Navy. The 14 yr old that I knew was of slim build and had long black hair, combed back on his head. The John I met was somewhat prosperous around the middle and had grey crinkly hair sparsely distributed.
Unfortunately I lost touch with him. Last know address…..Auckland N.Z.
John made it to Purser with the P & 0 Line before retiring. I took his sister Ann to the movies a couple of times.
Graham Whitham (at Queen's 1952-59)............provided by The Museum of Richmond
I can recall a sandpit in Miss Jordan's room . This was rectangular and on legs and stood by the window, I think. Mrs Douglas often hit children with a ruler and the worst was across the back of the hand with the ruler's edge.
My eldest sister, Sylvia went to hospital on one occasion when boiling water she was carrying for Mrs Picksley spilt over her. I half severed the little finger on my left hand when falling on the ice on the frozen pond before we went in for lessons and was also hospital bound.
The pond had an 'island' as we called it...now gone. It was next to the slope and jutted out into the water. It was great excitement to venture on to it and strictly forbidden. The pond was a magnet and on several occasions I went home with shoes full of water.
Families of children seemed to pass or fail the 11 plus as family groups. I recall getting a second opportunity when it was my turn but found the second try even harder than the first. Much of the Maths had not been included in our syllabus. Those in the top block next to the window were expected to pass. I was in the bottom group next to the partition.
Mr Marshall had a persistent cough which we were told was due to being gassed during the War but I never knew the truth of this.
I was overjoyed when the road outside the school was covered with tarmac instead of a gravel surface. This meant that we could now have very satisfactory races down the slope with our Dinky cars.
In the top class there was much competition to ring the handbell out of the window to signal the start of school or the end of the various breaks. I only managed to ring it on a handful of occasions but these were important enough to tell my parents.
Both my sisters went to the school and I remember disliking school photographs so much that I arranged, without her knowledge, to have mine done with Margaret much to her disgust.
I now live in Sutton and am a Councillor there. In the 1998 Election one Ian Ruxton was also elected. I was describing Mrs. Douglas's ruler punishment on one occasion when he told me that he, too had been to Queen's and had been in the same class as and remembered Margaret
Michael Collett (1939-44)
I have just read through the reminiscences on the King's School site, not without both a smile on the lips and a tear in the eye.
Many of these memories are so similar to my own, but I will comment, totally at random, on some of the earlier observations.
Mr Kemp was headmaster in my time and I remember him mostly for two things. One, being the readings from the W.E.Johns Biggles books and secondly for a caning on the hand which he once gave me with gusto. On that occasion, I was "caught short" on the way to school in the morning, rushed home for the necessary relief, but was then too scared to arrive late at school, so I took the morning off. When I returned in the afternoon, I was called out in front of the class, Miss Rixon's, and given those two whacks, much to the amusement of my fellow pupils, including a Belgian refugee girl, who obviously thought it much more amusing than anything happening in her country at that time.
As others have said, the Air Raid Shelters were a source of great fun and amusementalthough later, when I went to Shene, it always seemed a little incongruous to be sitting in the shelter learning German while the same buggers were overhead (well their doodlebugs anyway) trying to knock hell out of us. The German master (the famous Vultch), said that it was for our own benefit, because if the Germans were to win, we'd get better jobs than the non German speakers! I wonder why we learned French then?
The Italian Prisoner of War camp sticks in the memory, because we used sometimes to taunt the prisoners on their, not infrequent, walks outside the camp and would throw stones at them. They never retaliated, as far as I recall. Between the camp and the river towpath, there was a field which was known amongst the lads as The Radish Field, because that is all that ever seemed to grow there and it was a fruitful area for scrumping. Yes, scrumping radishes, washing them in the river and eating them. Well,there was a war on.....
You mention that Kew was flooded in 1928. My grandparents lived in Cambridge Cottages and suffered those rising waters, and, so I learned many years later, that was the time that my father decided to take home to meet his parents, for the very first time, his girl friend and my future mother. She often told me that she was made very unwelcome, but with mud half way up the walls and chairs stacked on the table, one should not be too surprised.
Ah! Newens! We lived in Kew Road, just a few houses away from Newens, and it is with fond memory that I can recall calling in there on many occasions to ask if there were any stale cakes left over. Whether there were or not, Miss Newen (Kath), wouldalways manage to find at least one, even if it came from the display section. The house next to Newens was bombed in 1940 or 1941 (a Dr Williams house I think) and was never restored, but was rebuilt much later and acquired by the Newens family.
The shop where you bought your pomegranates was, I think, Williams the greengrocers. They were one of the first families in the area after the war to have a TV set, and,uninvited, Eric Topping and I, would go many times to watch the weekly amateur boxing. How this started and why they allowed us in, I never did learn, but we were always made welcome (I think). In one of that row of shops and houses, which you mention, was where my parents lived for a while and where my brother David, now living in Canada, was born in 1931. There was another, shoemaker's, shop in a small yard overlooking the pond. His name was Cowdery, a short and rather stout man, who the kids used to taunt with their nickname for him Old Cow Dung. Delightful children!
I used to start my paper round at the grander houses around the other Green (until I got the sack for being late), and from two of them, during the two years I kept my job, I was given a handsome Christmas Box of 2/6d, handed over by the butler and for which I had to sign. On one occasion, I don't remember the year, when delivering an evening paper, I was surprised to see the house of one of my "customers" surrounded by a huge crowd. The King, George VI, was visiting, and meeting Anna Neagle, who was to play the part of Queen Victoria in a film (I think, The Mudlark) and apparentlythe King wanted to ensure that she was suitable to portray his great grandmother. They came to the window to wave to the crowd, but neither gave me a Christmas box.........
I don't remember the Marchioness of Carisbrooke, but I do remember, in my tenth year, a descendant of Samuel Taylor Coleridge who lived in one of the houses overlooking the green. He gave us a short lecture on the Pride of being English and then offered three prizes for the best essay on "the Englishman in History I would most like to have been", or some such. I chose General Wolfe, and won the second prize of half a crown, the five shillings being won by a Miss Collett (first name forgotten), no relation, and who lived in Watcombe Cottages. That was the year when I passed the "Scholarship" and had to chose whether to go to Tiffins or Shene. At that time Shene did not have a school uniform (clothes rationing), but Tiffins had a horrible red and blue stripey blazer,so I chose Shene, not knowing where either of these schools was. Dennis Keene, a few years younger than me, was in the same year as I and was the youngest, I believe, of that year's intake to Shene.
Just a couple of comments on one or two of the other contributions.
Jimmy Russell: He overlooked listing me as one of his friends. I can remember Jimmy returning to Kings after one of his spells as an evacuee. He bounded in to the classroom, as though he had never been away, and yet, in the meantime, he had had the sad misfortune to lose an eye. I never knew how, but always admired the way in which he still took everything in his stride.
The buses which terminated at Kew Green: for Peter Casey's benefit, these
were the number 7 and the number 15, one of which went to a mysterious place
called Ladbroke Grove, and the other to Stoke Newington. In the little sweet shop, next door to where the bus crews took their break, in 1939 they used to have a liquorice sweet called a flapjack, which retailed at 1/4d (a farthing). So if you had a pound, you could get 960 of them, but since my pocket money then was 2d, my weekly intake was 8, until sweet rationing started and put a stop to that.
The nurse who used to inspect your head was known, probably universally, as Nitty Nora, but I never knew, until I read your reader's comments that she also looked down the girls' knickers.
The vicar, in my time was the Rev. A.L.E. Hopkins. What a lovely set of initials for a non drinking vicar. Mr Pronger, had been a curate at Kew before the war, returned from Belper, after Rev. Hopkins retirement, and officiated at our wedding in 1967.
remembers old Cowdery ....who billed 6d to charge the accumulators for the family wireless. Many times they had to be taken back when he did not charge them thoroughly,
Linda Matthews (Peak)
has a photograph of herself taken during Coronation Year 1953 which is due for inclusion in the Picture Gallery. She has a clear recollection of having her hair especially combed and her awareness of a large hole in the sleeve of her jumper..!
Mike Barrett (written on 16th February, 2006)
I owned a bronze King School, Kew Attendance Medallion of the World War 1 era until a couple of months ago when I donated it to the Museum of Richmond. It was slightly larger than the old 5 shilling Crown piece both in diameter and thickness.
My earliest recollection must have been in 1939. At the time there were air raid shelters on Kew Green and I remember a system practice which involved going in at one end and being pulled out through the emergency hatch by the Civil Defence at the other.
Vicky Quinton (Heaviside)
Just when actually remembering anything puts a strain on my limited resources, my cousin's husband (Keith Owen, himself an 'old boy' of King's/Queen's School) introduces me to your site and memories instantly come flooding back!!!
First may I say how flattered I am to be mentioned by Chris Holland. Are you sure you are not confusing me with my sister, Rosalind Quinton - four years my senior and much more sparky and memorable than I ? She frequently fell foul of Mrs. Douglas who, I am certain I'm not imagining this, used to smoke in the classroom and wait 'til the long grey ash fell onto her very slim, black clad person before languidly brushing it off! My personal memory of the lady is that she used to send me round to the parade to buy small tins of oxtail soup for her lunch, the money being deposited in a tobacco tin. As a teacher of forty years standing, I wonder how 'health and safety' would have viewed such an action on my part!
I loved Mr. Harwood. Come to think of it, I also had a tremendous crush on his son, Colin, who taught at Sunday school and used to give us rides home in his small car. Mr. Marshall I remember because he used to throw chalk across the room and, because so many of the boys chose to learn 'The Pirates' Christmas' as their poetic contribution, that I can still recite it word for word although I never actually learnt it! There was also a very kind boy called Roger who used to draw animals for me, elephants I recall in one lesson, and I drew the jungle background. We passed the books between the desks - very cautiously as I remember!
My younger brother, Sam Quinton, was taught by Miss Goby who was I believe a veritable breath of fresh air - and probably instrumental in my father being one of the many dads who volunteered to carry to the school the new sandtray mentioned by one of your contributors! Sam still owns the house in Gloucester Road where we lived as children and his three children have all attended the 'new' Queen's School. What memories! Linda and Graham Smith, Maureen and Ronnie Lee, Ian Harries, Graham Stockton, Margaret Perry, Raymond Coomber - they're all coming back. Oh yes, and Peter Orenburg ( apologies for the spelling), an older boy and my hero when he helped me up and took me home after I fell over while skating on the frozen pond.
After all this time I can now tell about tying one of the boys to the handles of the girls' toilet door by his wrists and then being unable to release him when the whistle blew!! Longest three minutes of my life when the whole school had to line up in silence as we fought with the skipping rope .. and me usually so quiet!!
I don't know who the boy was but remember that we girls had a long skipping rope and the boys kept running through it, so we exacted revenge! It was in the two 'old toilets', pre the building of the new block. Perhaps he will read this and recall the event
Won't bore you with any more ...... the Coronation Sports and parade, Old Lob with his animals Master Willy the Pig and Percy the bad chick, tearing the crusts off the warm bread from Newens, hours spent in Kew Gardens - ONE OLD PENNY TO GET IN! - the Vikings rowing up the River with torches blazing.......!
Margaret Williams (Lickfold)
The Williams‘ in Kew were not related to us as far as I know. My father William Alun Williams was born in Rhos near Wrexham, North Wales in 1894? and was a miner in his early years. As a teenager he took a ship to America and found employment with Chryslers. He stayed in the USA for a few years before returning to England where he worked at Chryslers in Mortlake Road until he died in 1959. The curious thing is that he lodged at Watcombe Cottages next to King’s School on his return and when he met my mother.
My mother, Lily Martha Alum was born in Somerleyton near Lowestoft, Suffolk in 1908. She came to Kew as a housemaid to a house in North Road. They met and married at Barnes Church and moved into 62 Defoe Avenue, Kew.
My sister Enid Amy Williams (d.o.b. 3/6/37) and I were born at this address. You can imagine the clash of dialects between Welsh and Suffolk as we grew up!
I was only seven months old when WWII started and six when it finished but I do remember the war years. My sister and I spent about four months in Rhos with relatives when I was five. We both returned to Kings School until we left to attend Gainsborough Road school.
Unfortunately, we have only family photos of this period and do not add to those that you already have.
I was able to recognise myself in two of the pictures in "Children at King’s/Queen’s School (19)".
In picture No 1 (A5E09A9175.png) "Mrs Hodgson & Class in 1945" I am in the second row from the front, five from left with long hair. Next to me is Doreen Pegg six from left and Robert Cousins four from left. In picture No 3 (8BA207C1EA.png) "Mr Lake with Class in 1948" I am in the second row from the front, three from right with ribbon in my hair.
It was lovely to see all their faces again; it only seems like yesterday. Despite the war, it was a happy time in my life.
Incidentally, my sister Enid lives here in Western Australia also.
Valerie Robinson (Phillips) 1949-55
I too was a pupil at Kings school from Sept 1949 to July 1955
My name was Valerie Robinson, and I believe that you have recently spoken to Joan Hornsby younger sister of Richard and Harry. She e-mailed this evening and I went straight to your site and then phoned her as we looked at the photos together with hilarious comments I might add.
I lived at 36 Bushwood Road so was able to run to school as the bell was ringing and still be on time, I still to this day do not like to be late anywhere.
In the Reunion photo's the last photo on page 4, the unknown person is Bobby Edwins who lived at 15 Bushwood when we were young, hope this helps with that.
I was at Queens School from 1955 to 1958 and then went on to Richmond County School for Girls.
I had moved to Kew when I was 8 which is why I did not go to Queens School from the age of 5. I was previously at St. Matthias School in Earls Court.
The only other members of my class at Queens that I can remember are Joan, Rosalind Luke, Pamela Birdseye, Stewart ?, Joe Orr and Peter Roper.
I remember a big bell being rung at play time. I cannot remember any of the teachers there, only the ones at the Grammar School.
I gather Queens School has been demolished and there are houses on the site now. Is the old pond still there? We all used to play around the pond and on the railings. (It wouldn't be allowed today ...Health and Safety and all the other things we have to do in this Nanny State.)
I will climb down from my soap box now!
I now live on the Essex/Suffolk border and have lived in this area for over 30 years, but I still remember my days in Kew with great fondness.
Travelling on the 90 or 90b from Kew Station to Richmond. We sometimes went to school by train, one stop. I remember the green overland trains which I think ran from Richmond to Broad Street. I got stuck in the luggage rack with my hockey stick, obviously playing the fool and up to no good, and could not get disentangled in time to get out at Kew. I went on to Gunnersbury, whilst all my friends were left giggling on the platform at Kew and the Station Master waving his fist and saying he knew which School I went to and I would be reported. What St. Trinian girls we were.
My parents were £10 Poms and came over on the ship Fairsky in 1965. Went to Melbourne Victoria. There for 5yrs. The last Christmas day I was there, we had 4 seasons in one day. Snow in the morning, Spring about 11o'clock, cold strong gusty cold winds. About 2pm a heat wave 40c. By about 5pm it was down to a cold 10c. Typical weather for Melbourne. I had lived in Brisbane in those first 5yrs. It was warm weather every day, and only rained at night time. I said to Mum and Dad, bye going to live in Queensland and I've been up here ever since. I have 3 kids, my one and only daughter is having her first baby, should be here about my birthday in November.
My wife and I live in Labrador just north of Surfers Paradise which is fairly close to the New South Wales border. Queensland, have been in the area for over 35 years and we've moved home about 6 times although always kept the same phone number.
Going back to old times, that pond outside the old school, if I remember rightly was an overflow pond for when the Thames flooded and only filled up at such times otherwise it was empty. As it has a concrete floor my brother and I and friends used to ride our bikes in there and use it as a race track after the council had cleaned out the mud.
Pat Rosier (Layzell Ward)
The photos of the Kew Boys Annual cricket match show my uncle Cecil Kember who was involved with the organisation for some years. Nice ones to add to the family archives.
My mother who died last week age 100, and her brothers Walter Reginald and Cecil Charles Kember would have been pupils way back although it may be necessary for me to confirm it with the Surrey County Record Office but I am sure that they went to King's School. Mum often spoke of it.
Cecil is quoted in several histories ofKewoften with the surname misspelt as Kimber. He organised the annual cricket match for many years along with Jimmy Attfield and the Leatherdale brothers and ran the ARP Post at the Coach & Horses during WW2.
He was a jovial character and a friend of Valerie who ran a hairdressing salon.
Will take the photos in which he appears to Mum's funeral and show them to his son.
Alan Marrs................(1961-67) re Reunion 2011
Thanks for the invitation , l'll see if l can make it , l was at Queens school by the pond from 1961 to 1967 , Mr Seddon was headmaster then and l remember Mrs Douglas and Mr Heinz the teachers ,and l believe it was Mr Wilson the school caretaker who used to pay a few of us 6d a week to put the tables and chairs out in the two bottom classes for lunch after the partition was pulled back , l was in the same class as Patrick Troughtons kids Peter and Jane . l recall the Army evacuated us in their trucks when the Thames flooded although l can't remember the dates , l was also there when Winston Churchill died and we had the day off , l then went on to Southfields Grammar in Wimbledon which turned into a Comprehensive sadly when l was there , oddly enough the new Queens School is built on the site of the house we used to live in on Cumberland Road , spooky eh ?
Christine Payne (Guard) 1953-59
I was at Queen's until I moved on to Richmond County. My brother and sister also went to Queen’s School. They are David Payne (1955-61) and Gillian (Payne) (Jones) (1957-63).
We lived in Priory Road and lots of my friends lived around like Jacqueline Wilkins, who was a close friend, Angela Holland, Barbara Tyrrell, David Perry and many more. There were over 40 in Dougie's (Mrs Douglas) class. We played in the street or 'round the pond' all the time. The pond was great because of the bars and we worked our way up to the highest one, where falling forward was the most dangerous move.
My Gran lived in Watcombe cottages and we had many lunches with her rather than staying for school dinners, which were yukky! As someone else said, the milks were disgusting too, especially in the summer, when they got warm and went off.
Started off in Miss Jordan's class. She was very nice, if old, and we did lots of nice things like painting and modelling. We did learn things too like our alphabet. I could read when I got to school, as my Grandpa taught me. Miss Goby's meant a bit more learning but still OK. Liked Miss Greaves best. Thought she was very pretty at the time and she had a lot of patience. I don't remember her hitting anyone. Mr Marshall was appalling and learned not a thing from him. Mrs Hodson was an old friend of my parents - we called her Hoddy. At this point, I got pneumonia and had to go to an open air school - not worth talking about. Came back to school in Dougie's class. Can't remember how she hit people, but her and Hoddy did it differently - one over the knuckles and one in the palm. I am glad to say I wasn't one of them. It seemed to be the boys all the time.
The playground was totally unyielding and there was many a scraped knee out there. Contrary to other people's feeling, all schools have a tarmac playground - I know, I was a teacher.
The loos were something else as well. Uncovered except for the cubicles and you could get very wet!
About once a week (I think) Mr Pronger came up to do assembly. That was also totally boring except for the singing. The rest of the time, the headteacher did it - first Mr Harwood and then 'Seedy' Seddon.
I will certainly try to come to the May 2011 Reunion and will bring my sister.
I recall the Headmaster, Mr Riley telling us "The King is dead long live the Queen". I had the "privilege" of getting smacked on the hand with a ruler by Mrs Douglas. It was for talking too much! A fault which has continued all my life - so the punishment didn't cure "the problem".
Roger Ward (a pupil at King’s School in the 1950s)
Some musings on my time living on Kew Green and being a pupil at Kings School Kew, which of course became Queens School before finally closing and relocating to Cumberland Road
I was in the same year ( I think) as Chris Hollands and we both remember many of the same names. There was also a Brian & Rosemary Scott. They were twins; Rosemary was absolutely lovely and Brian and I became quite good friends. They lived onCumberland Road and groups of us were often at their parents’ house. I believe their father was a building contractor and was related to the famous explorer. The game we all enjoyed the most was to press on each others lower belly and try to evoke a bladder evacuation….!
Other names I recall are Terry Moran, Louanna Orchard (whom I loved !)and Janet Cousins (who also was on my radar). Susan Pickering I recall very well. We used to push and shove each other in play and on one occasion when I pushed her she fell badly and received very alarming scratches on her face and arms. Oh my God, I felt so badly. As did her outraged father who demanded that the Headmaster mete out suitable punishment to the horrible perpetrator.
There was a boy with the last name “Baldwin”. Visiting kids were a boy fromJamaica(I think) with a name like Hanniford, and 2 sisters who joined us fromCheltenham. It is strange the fragments one remembers. There were also the Ginn brothers, Brian and Christopher. Through a photo of Christopher with the cricket team on Kew Green I was able to meet up with him a few years ago (probably 30 years now I think about it) at a pub inSussex. I also met his parents who reminisced with me. His father remembered the name of the red haired lady at the United Dairies on the corner ofGloucester Road; who was “ Flossie”.
Of the teachers I have very fond memories of Mrs Hodgson, and negative memories of both Mr Marshall, and Mrs Douglas. Probably the least said the better about the latter; save for the observation that while it is true that there was a group of her favourites who were delighted to see her each day, the rest of us groaned inwardly. Her influence on me was both profound and totally devoid of any positivity.
There was a girl named Sheila Dunlop who was a very fast runner. At the annual games one year on Kew Green Graham Smith was running to a very easy win on the final lap. Without him being aware Sheila was quickly gaining ground. As spectators ( at that time) we became aware that the red faced Sheila had a good chance of racing past him at the last few moments and winning. In the excitement several supporters of Graham called out urgent warnings. Poor Sheila was so angry and upset as Graham lookedaround to see her and he comfortably increased his speed to cross the line.
We were always aware of “ Spud Murphy” and his chums,
On the Green itself I recall the Richardsonfamily very well. Mr Richardson drove an old Chevrolet wood paneled estate wagon. He was also a fitness fanatic who strode out each morning for a long brisk walk and played tennis several times a week as did my group of mates later on. We loved our tennis, and I recall that we equally loved to be on the same courts as the very stunning Sandra Richardson. David Richardson’s note: This would have been the Richardsons at the traffic lights and not my own family
At the Annual garden fete on the other side of the green David Killick was usually MC. Pat Thomas and her parents were an institution inKewand I have lovely memories of them as an inspirational family. I recall the Sheppicks and further down the “ Potters “ and their vegetable shop. I wonder how things turned out for their wheel-chair bound son “Tommy”.
Next door to my father’s butcher shop (9 KewGreen) was the “Penguin Café” and then Threshers the wine merchant which was also the home of Deidre Classen and her parents. Deidre married a policeman and we all enjoyed the reception in the community hall onGloucester Road. Still further was Descanso House that suffered a terrible fire.
In the opposite direction going around the Green towards the Gardens was the Chocolate Box sweet shop, then there was the home of the “Duke” family whom I believe was a QC. After that the artists Ms Short & Ms Robertson, and then the “ Vogel” family. Next was Carisbrooke House and I remember delivering the meat there. My parents were invited the annual dance hosted by the Marquess. Later, the Marquess relocated to rooms in Kensington Palace and I had to abandon my old bike and catch the bus to deliver the meat. Most of the houses beyond that were owned by Kew Gardens, and included David Rawlings and his parents.
I recall St Anne’ mostly as a place to play games in with the purpose-made graveyard. Cowboys with toy guns was the top favourite.
Near the school was “ Cambridge Cottages” and I recall the name “Alan Bristow”. His father was a fire-fighter and in the summer on his days off he would take us to play cricket. There was another kid who suffered terribly at School. His name escapes me ( Lennie?); his father kept pigeons. He was desperately unhappy at school and as a result frequently was truant. In their wisdomat the time this was treated with canings. I think Christopher Ginn told me that he took his life while still quite young.
In the Spring time there were warnings about floods and the dangers of the Thames. I believe it was Sally Lovell whose father was responsible for flood warnings. I can clearly recall The Green being completely under water, fog such that you literally could hardly see a few yards; summers so hot that you couldn’t sleep; and winters so cold that you had to run to school ( short trousers were still the order of the day) and leap onto the radiators in the hall before climbing the stairs to the classrooms. Thinking about how fast we could run down the stairs (3 steps at a time) and swing on the handrail to the next level, it is surprising but I cannot recall any accidents.
We loved our playground, were wary of the wash-rooms, and occasionally succumbed to the temptations to climb on the coke hill. If discovered it usually meant the cane and I recall Graham Stockton falling victim to this. Cuts and scrapes from the playgroundmeant that you could go to the kitchen and be treated kindly by a very nice lady.
Somewhere I do have a class photo and I WILL find it and post it. That will probably jerk further memories and particularly more names. Though I live inCanada, if and when there is another reunion I would love to attend and will make every effort to do so. In the meantime I would love to hear from anyone who may remember me.
Tony Kirton (c 1942-44)
I do have some memories of Kew as a boy of 9 or 10 during the war. My father was away and my mother working so when I left school most afternoons, another boy and I would go to Kew Gardens where his grandfather was a gatekeeper and would allow us in under the turnstile. That was our adventure playground and is probably why I now have a love of gardens and the countryside. I can also remember spending time by, on and above the river. On one occasion, I think for a dare, we walked across the railway bridge from one side to the other and back again, on the outside! On several occasions we shared an old lorry inner tube and paddled about on the water – although neither of us could swim. We lived at the end of Ruskin Avenue next to a government building which was suddenly taken over by American soldiers. We would stand and chat to those on guard duty at the gate as we no doubt reminded some of them of the children they had left at home. I can remember seeing one of my school friends tucking into a tin of something which turned out to be salted peanuts – unheard of. “Where did you get it?” “One of the Yanks gave it to me”. “Why?” “He asked me if I had a sister and how old she was and I said yes, she is 18”. “But you don’t have a sister.” “I know, but he didn’t”. From then on we all had 18-year old sisters but it didn’t last for long – either they ran out of peanuts or, more likely, they realised what we were up to! As we became more and more familiar we were allowed inside and were shown the ack-ack guns and searchlights. More importantly (for us) we were shown the cookhouse. The food they had imported was incredible. Canned peaches (not seen since before the war) were shipped over in milk churns but as the ladles were not quite long enough to reach the bottom the churns were discarded and placed outside with about two or three inches of peaches in syrup at the bottom. We soon found out how to empty the churns and I have loved canned peaches ever since. I mentioned the guns and searchlights. Every night the sirens would sound and my mother and I would turn out the lights and stand at our front upstairs window looking at the crisscrossing of the beams of light in the sky as our neighbours tried to pick up enemy aircraft which were off course for central London. On many nights the guns would go off but I can only remember the one occasion when they were successful. It has been imprinted on my mind ever since. We used to go to the Saturday cinema and apart from cowboys and Mickey Mouse and the like there was always a propaganda film on how we were winning the war. We were encouraged to regard Germans as beasts to be killed as quickly as possible. You can imagine my reaction when two of our searchlights caught a German fighter plane in their cross beams, the guns started up and scored a direct hit. The plane burst into a ball of black smoke and dived straight down. I started cheering but when I turned to my mother I saw that she was crying. She explained that the man who had been killed in that plane was probably some little boy’s daddy. Since then I have never regarded the killing in war, no matter how justified, as something to celebrate. On a lighter note, when the greengrocer came around with his horse and cart on a Saturday morning, I would go out and buy the vegetables and then pay him. I was quite good at arithmetic and he was a bit slow. He asked me if I would like a Saturday job handling the money for him. My mother agreed and so the following Saturday I cycled across the bridge to Brentford Market to meet him. I was astounded to see sacks of potatoes with my name on them! At that time I had no idea that there is a Kirton in Lincolnshire, potato growing country. I used to get to the market early so that I could wander about looking at the various stalls before setting off. I thoroughly enjoyed the leisurely pace and the importance of being the money boy. Even more importantly, I was paid a shilling! Happy days.
Graham Knight (mid-60s to 1972)
I first came across your website a couple of years ago and have been meaning to write ever since, an enforced absence from work of several weeks means I have finally run out of excuses for not doing so!
I attended Queen's School, as it was then, from the mid-1960s, leaving in 1972 to go to Shene County Grammar in it's dying years. My younger sister Alison Knight (now Lancaster) was also a pupil, as were my father Leonard Knight and his cousin Les Wiggs before the war. In fact my father and Les both appear in one of your class photos, the one of Valerie Horwill's Class around 1934. My father is the tall blond boy, second left in the back row. I'd say the date is spot on as he would have been 8 years old in 1934.
During my genealogical studies I discovered that my father's family lived on and around Kew Green from the early 1900s, they were a large family and it's almost certain that most if not all of his aunts and uncles, and his own father and possibly mother too, were also pupils. I'm sure that my father's older sister Joan Knight would have gone there too.
My mother Audrey Knight worked at the school as a secretary after the move to the new site, she is still with us and recognises many of the names as old friends and work colleagues.
My family lived very close to the old school on Kew Green, our house was number 84 next door to the Greyhound pub. I have a great photo of the school. It's taken during one of the frequent floods of the 1960s, probably 1965 as mum thinks it was the year that my sister was born, it's taken from the foot of the bridge looking back over a flooded Green, with the school on the higher ground in the background. It was probably just before I started at the school, but I vividly remember watching from my parent's bedroom window as a man ferried children to school through the floodwaters in a small dinghy, no school closures in those days just because of a bit of excess water!
I believe it was during the autumn (November ?) and the lack of leaves on the trees and people's clothing bears this out. My sister was born that June and it was definitely after that. The photo was taken by a Richmond & Twickenham Times photographer and appeared in the paper. Editor's Note: You can see this photo in the Picture Gallery.
My house was the one to this side of the Greyhound pub, number 84, and the man leaning against the front window is my dad.
Many of the names appearing on the site are familiar to me, Mr Seddon was my first head teacher followed by Mrs Scroggins, and Mrs Hodgson was a favourite teacher, a shame to read that she is no longer with us. The terrifying Mrs Douglas is one who I will never forget, apart from receiving many raps across the knuckles from her ruler (probably well deserved!), I also remember her chain smoking in class which wouldn't be allowed these days, her art classes on the top floor were conducted through a permanent smog! I'm sure she was a lovely lady in reality, but to me as a small child she was a figure of dread to be avoided if at all possible!
My years at Queen's were generally very happy ones, I did well at most subjects and always looked forward to schooldays as I had many friends there. The subsequent move to Shene Grammar was a less happy one though, and in hindsight probably a mistake, I don't think I ever really fitted in there for various reasons and always felt out of my depth. The experience put me off formal education and I was one of the few who didn't go to Richmond College afterwards, leaving for an apprenticeship instead, one of only three I believe from my year who chose to go into work instead.
I'll see if I can pump mum for any more reminiscences, she knew just about everyone living around Kew Green from the 1950s - 1970s.
My house was the one to this side of the Greyhound pub, number 84, and the man leaning against the front window is my dad.
Do you remember Mattheson's the paper shop, where the couple are standing outside? I was sent along by my dad every Sunday morning to pay for the week's papers and buy a Sunday paper for him, Mr Mattheson always gave me a few sweets.
My father lived at number 84 from an early age, his father died when he was just seven, so he and his elder sister lived with their widowed mother who rented the house from the brewery, her own mother also rented number 86 next door from the brewery until she died. My studies show that her family had also lived a few doors further down at Waterloo Place in earlier years. After his mother's death, by which time he and my mother were married, they bought the house for the princely sum of £3,000, my mother sold it a few years after my father died in the mid-1980s for approximately £90,000, most recently it sold for a whopping £722,000 in June last year. Amazing how much the value of a humble worker's cottage has risen, it was tiny inside, with an outside toilet when I was young.
Anyway back to school memories, I had two second cousins who lived round the back in the cottages, and they both went to the school too. David Knight who is a year or so older than me, and who now lives out this way in Chertsey, I spoke to him on the phone a few years back but haven't seen him since we were kids, and Peter Matthews who I think is a year younger, I haven't seen him for maybe 40 years. I'm sure all their sisters went to the school too.
Peter and I used to get into all sorts of trouble as kids, mum reminded me how one day some workmen were diging a hole in the road outside the school, and no sooner was it dug than one lunchtime Peter and I filled it back in again. Unfortunately for us Mr Seddon saw the whole thing from his window, caught us red handed, and stood over us while we dug it all out!
After it was demolished the old school grounds became our playground for a few years before it was redeveloped, we also played in the ruins of the old Boathouse pub where I understand many famous bands played during the 1960s, I had no idea back then. Another favourite playground was the old disused fairground alongside the bridge, just across the road from the Boathouse. When I was very small my grandmother, who lived across the river in Chiswick, used to walk over most weekends and take me for a walk in the Gardens, afterwards we often ended up at the fairground which was still open in those days, I remember there being a small carousel, and various sideshows including a coconut shy, and there was a candy floss and ice cream stall.
We used to play in and around the pond of course, often falling in and going home soaking wet, we sailed model boats and fished too, catching small dace very easily, and when it froze in winter it was the best ice rink ever!
Here's a photo of a tree planting session by pupils. I remember that day very well, there can't have been too many tree plantings so I'm sure it's the same one, I may be in the photo somewhere but can't see myself. Editor's Note: This photo is also in the Picture Gallery.
Memories are flooding back as I type, and another event I remember clearly was the schoolchildren turning out when the Queen visited KewGardens one day, I remember we all stood in line and waved, but I don't actually remember seeing Her Majesty for some reason.
In 1973, the year after I had left Queen's School, I remember lots of school children and a few teachers coming to our house to watch the wedding of Princess Anne and Mark Philips on TV, it must have been my sister's class I think as she was still there, what I was doing there I don't know as I should have been at school, it was a Wednesday so maybe we'd been given the day off? They would have walked from the new school of course which confuses me a little, it seems a long way to have come and I'm sure the school had their own TV! I do remember that my parents, like thousands of others, had rented a colour TV the previous week especially for the big event, maybe that was the reason.
Graham Glockling L.V.O. (at King’s School 1.3.38 – 28.7.44)Graham Glockling moved to Canada from his native England in 1956.
He was employed with the Canadian Public Service and the Military for over 27 years working in various senior positions with the Secretary of State Department, National Defence (Major), the Office of the Prime Minister and the National Capital Commission.
Graham served as a Staff Officer at Canadian Forces Headquarters, as Federal Coordinator for Royal Visits to Canada and as advisor to several former Prime Ministers and Governors General.
He was responsible for the Installation Ceremonies of new Governors General, State Funerals, including the memorable cross-Canada State Funeral for former Prime Minister, John G. Diefenbaker.
Graham played a senior role in eleven Royal Visits to Canada and was the Federal Coordinator for The Queen’s Silver Jubilee celebrations in Canada and for the implementation of the Silver Jubilee medal programme, created and developed the outdoor Astrolabe Theatre in Ottawa; developed the Festival Canada programme in Ottawa from 1970 until 1976; created and produced the annual Governor General’s Children’s Party with an attendance of 7,000 children; consulted with the Supreme Court of Canada in planning their Centennial Celebrations; planned and developed the 1976 Olympic Cultural programme in Ottawa and the arrival of the Olympic Flame from Greece; planned and directed the opening ceremonies for the Pan-American Wheel-chair Games in Halifax. planned and directed the Architect’s Opening of the Museum of Civilization, Ottawa/Gatineau, served on the Parliament Hill Statue Committee, to approve the design and unveiling of statues of former Prime Ministers, and the equestrian statue of The Queen.
For his work in organizing State Ceremonials and Royal Visits toCanada, he was awarded the Canadian Centennial Medal, the Queen’s Silver Jubilee Medal and was made a Lieutenant of The Royal Victorian Order by Her majesty The Queen in 1978.
Upon retirement from the Public Service, Graham formed the Magus Consulting Company which was set up to give courses and to consult on social and corporate protocol and etiquette, covering some twenty-six subjects. His clients included the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, the Canadian Police College, and the National Arts Center, The Toronto Convention Centre, private companies and individual senior executives.
Graham is a certified riding coach with the Canadian Coaching Association, a certified SCUBA diver, a private pilot, and teaches dressage and fencing. Since coming to Vernon, Graham has been awarded his 1st Dan (black belt) for Iaido.
Graham and Katlaan moved to Vernon in October 2001 to enjoy the many outdoor activities which include skiing and sailing. They are also active in Ballroom and Latin dancing.
We are sad to record the passing of the following King's School ex-pupils:
2005 RON CASTLE
2005 IRIS KIRWAN (Nee WATERER)
July, 2006 RONALD VICTOR ABIGAIL
2007 DAVID COLLEY
May, 2008 ERIC HORWILL
June, 2008 QUEENIE BIRDSALL (ELSEY)
June, 2008 CYRIL TREVOR CASTLE
September, 2008 JACK BUCKERFIELD
JANE COLLIN (SMITH)
April, 2009 JIMMY RUSSELL
February, 2010 PAMELA DRINKALL (FRASER-BRUNNER)
April, 2010 RON DRAPER
October, 2010 (aged 100) ROSE KEMBER (ROSIER)
October, 2010 GERRY FITCH
October, 2010 NORMA HALES (ROWE)
November, 2010 KEN DYCKES
January, 2012 GEORGE MORDUE
February, 2012 DOREEN ASHTON (WHYBROW)
DEREK PARVIN June, 2012
MIKE AYRES, November, 2012
HARRY ABBETT April, 2012
ROSEMARY BALL (CAPEL) May, 2013
MIKE COLLETT 2013
GAYE GATES-SUMNER November, 2014
JOHN CEENEY 2014
JOYCE EVELYN HILLS (PARTRIDGE) April 2015
KEITH LAMBERT approx 2010