OPA Newsletter January 1986
New Series No. 49
THE OLD PHAROSIANS’
being some current observation of the life of a school and of men who were boys at that school.
J. D. McNeil, Esq.
Philip Harding, Esq., 6 Monins Road, Dover
Ian Pascall, Esq., 45a Bewsbury Cross Lane, Whitfield CT16 3EZ
K. H. Ruffell, Esq., 193 The Gateway, Dover CT16 1LL
THE EXTENDING FAMILY
At the end of the Christmas term I went up to school to be present at the final assembly but was barely in time for the concluding school hymn-“Let there be light.” I stood in the gallery and sang without a book for the words have been inscribed through time on the parchment of my mind.
But a small choirboy edged toward me offering to share his book with the rather ancient visitor: and an eleven-year-old treble and 71-year-old growler sang the hymn together.
TWO PAPERS are included with this Newsletter
The SCHOOL CALENDAR for the present Spring term shows current activities in the school.
The ten-year financial statistics presented by our Treasurer, Ian Pascall, show:
- there has been a most encouraging increase of membership, especially life-membership;
- though administrative costs are minimal, other costs, mainly of the Newsletter, inevitably increase;
- if we deduct life subscriptions from total income to yield a “real annual income” we have an “annual deficit” which is covered by spending the seed corn of life subscriptions.
LETTER FROM THE PRESIDENT
Dear Fellow Old Pharosians,
It was good to see so many of you at our Dinner in September. Since then, my wife and I attended Guest Evening and were once again greatly impressed by the scholarship achieved and of course by the music and the enthusiasm of the boys, staff and parents of the present generation.
Membership of our Association has increased by well over 10% since last year. But please check whether each Old Pharosian is a member and, if not, persuade him to enrol. If you need more of the forms sent out with the List of Members and the July Newsletter Philip Harding can supply. We need ever more subscribers to help fund School Activities and the cost of the Newsletter.
For added interest, it would be nice if your years of attendance at the school could be shown when we next publish the List of Members. It would simplify this task if you include this information (to the best of your memory) when you next write to Ken Ruffell or Philip Harding. If you are not writing a letter, I should be happy to receive a note just giving your name, present address and years at school.
Best wishes to you all for 1986.
J. D. McNeil (1926-35),7 Beach Court, The Beach, Walmer, Deal CT14 7HN.
THE ASSOCIATION’S ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING, 21st September, 1985
The meeting began with a minute’s silence for individual thoughts on the death of Bernard Denham.
Consideration then turned to the illnesses of Norman Sutton and Arch Coulson, both so long active in the Association’s affairs. Letters expressing good wishes were sent to each.
In the minutes of the 1984 A.G.M. and in the Secretary’s Report of the 1985 year, references were made to the restoration of the vandalized War Memorial cricket pavilion. Thanks were expressed to Maurice Smith, Mac McNeil and Colin Henry for their work in supervising and completing much of the restoration: and to Eddie Crush and all the sub-committee members who had made the re-opening such an enjoyable occasion.
Discussion turned to the problems of vandalism. Neighbouring children play freely on the fields and pedestrians cross from all directions. Golf is practised and someone dug a circular hole in the cricket square so that he might improve his putting. Dogs foul the playing areas.
Headmaster summed up the problem by expressing the inescapable truth that the grounds can not be made entry-proof but he will close all gates during out-of-school hours as a gesture that the grounds are not open for public use. The concern of past members of the school for an acute present-day problem was deeply felt.
Treasurer presented his report with an admirable summary of the Association’s finances over the past decade. This information is reproduced in this Newsletter, partly to show members that our finances are in professional and most capable hands. The question of charitable status for the Association is treated elsewhere in this Newsletter.
Most of the present officers and committee were re-elected. To follow Mr. McNeil in the Presidency, Dr. Peter Burville was elected Vice-President. The Association’s archivist, Sydney Wenborn, was made an ex-officio committee member. He now has some accommodation, however limited, in the school where he can store and work on his material. Several investigations into aspects of school history are proceeding.
At the close of the meeting, the retiring President, Dr. Ken Lott, presented a book containing names and some details of all who have taught throughout the school’s history. Painstaking and lengthy research has produced this on-going record of great interest and value which may be consulted by visiting Old Pharosians interested in the school’s past and present life. This generous gift marked the end of Ken Lott’s year as President, a year in which he has devoted himself to the service of the Association.
Extracts from the Secretary’s Report to the 1985 A.G.M.
In my report last year I emphasised the need to encourage new members to our Association in order to ensure financial stability. I am thus pleased to report that membership has increased steadily during the past twelve months, and now stands at an all-time high approaching 550. It would be nice to think that this trend can be maintained, and that I can report a further increase next year. Coupled with the membership ‘drive’ has been the production of a comprehensive membership list, produced at low cost, and providing what I consider to be an essential facility to members. My apologies for any errors or omissionsmy typing is not always as I would wish it to be! As usual, your Committee have presided over the affairs of the Association in their customary manner, taking a keen interest in all activities. Our President, Ken Lott, has given his enthusiastic support to every event, be it Old Pharosian or School, that has taken place during his term of office. Personally, I have appreciated his willingness to become involved as fully as possible, and am pleased to record my own thanks to him, as well of course as those of the Association.
At a time when many kindred associations and organisations are experiencing difficulties, we are indeed most fortunate that the Old Pharosians’ Association continues to flourish. Long may that be so!
Philip Harding, Hon. Secretary.
Old Pharosians’ Association
Income and Expenditure Account for the year ended 31st July, 1985
|Postage and Stationery||54.69||79.68|
|School Prizes||20.00||War Loan Interest||3.50|
|Surplus of Income over Expenditure||709.21||Building Society Interest||187.98|
|Balance Sheet as
at 31st July, 1985
|Lloyds Bank Current Account||609.80||Creditors||302.00|
|Woolwich Equitable Building
|3118.98||Jubilee Trust Fund re. Organ||930.00|
|At 1st August, 1984||1787.57|
|Surplus for Year|
Note: The Association holds 3% War Loan with a nominal value of £100
Audited and found correct, A. G. Stone
I. D. Pascall, A.C.A., Hon. Treasurer
SOCCER MATCH. SCHOOL v. OLD BOYS, 21st September, 1985
A strong Old Boys’ side took advantage of a School XI which lacked its usual preparation because of the teachers’ industrial action to register a 6-0 victory and take the Andy Kremer Memorial Cup for the first time.
The Old Boys’ team consisted of Pete Norris, Chris King, Steve Gabriel, John Allingham, Simon Jones, Neil Beverton, Graham House, John Morgan, Steve Blake, Julian Wilson, Alan Freeman and Matthew Mann.
Scorers for the Old Boys, who led by 1-0 at half-time, were Graham House (3), Steve Gabriel, Matthew Mann and Neil Beverton.
Contributed by Mick Palmer who assembles and manages the Old Boys’ XI and is an Old Pharosian Committee member.
THE ANNUAL DINNER, 21st September, 1985
Grace before meat invited all to be thankful for food, friends and fellowship. On all these accounts the evening was a distinct success.
Pressure of people around the bar under the gallery made difficulties in getting a sherry or buying a bottle. This difficulty deserves some thought. A hundred and twenty persons in about the same number of square feet of floor space does limit circulatory movement.
The company ranged from young men still in school to Mrs. Turnpenny who was in the school when it started as the Dover County School in 1905. During the first decade of the school’s life there were at times more girls than boys on the register, with plenty more awaiting the chance to get in.
The new President, Mr. J. D. McNeil, explained in his commendably brief speech how, as a boy when fixing stage lighting, he let fall a knife which impaled itself in the floor within inches of the Headmaster. Mr. Whitehouse. By such matters of inches is history determined.
Headmaster spoke of the state of the school health, with his affection for the concept of the family of boys and masters, past, present and future. Headmasters love the word “civilized”, defined on this occasion as respect for good manners and each individual’s personal respect for standards established by Pharosians across the generations. Headmaster extended his usual, sincere and generous invitation to Old Pharosians to “keep on coming to the school”, to sign the Visitors’ Book, look at copies of Pharos and the albums of team photos, together with the newly available book, prepared and presented by Ken Lott, containing records of the school’s teaching staff from No. 1, Mr. Fred Whitehouse, to those now in service.
FROM THE COMMITTEE ROOM
The New Cricket Pavilion. After our President and Colin Henry and Maurice Smith had installed electricity, the school received a bill for use of electricity (estimated) in the sum of £450. On appeal this was reduced to £11.
Flags on the School Tower.
The Union Flag is flown almost every day. The flags of St. George, St.
Andrew, St. David and St. Patrick are flown on the appropriate days. Senior boys in the art department have made designs for a school flag and one design has been chosen. A flag will be ordered at a cost of about £100 for flying on school special occasions. The initiative in this matter comes from Maurice Smith.
Mr. Don Soppitt, a Parent, is now Chairman and Denis Weaver is Vice-Chairman.
The Old Pharosians’ Association Articles of Association.
If the Association is to achieve Charitable Status, with a view to the financial advantage of covenanting, there will be a need to wind up the existing Articles and re-form the Association with new Articles that will meet the requirements of the Charity Commissioner.
The existing Articles are in any case in need of up-dating and there seems nothing to lose by the proposed changes.
A sub-committee has been formed to draft new Articles for the Committee’s consideration. The July Newsletter will, if the matter is carried forward, contain a draft of the new Articles which could be placed before the A.G.M. on 20th September, 1986.
The May Ball will be on Saturday, 10th May.
Old Pharosian Visitors to the School.
There is now a small room in the school where copies of Pharos, team photo albums and other items of interest may be seen.
School Choir in York Minster.
Plans are well ahead for the choir to sing services in York Minster after Easter from the following Thursday to Sunday.
PAVILION OPEN AGAIN
The war memorial cricket pavilion burnt down by vandals last Septemberwas re-opened on Saturday by Mr. Eddie Crush, who originally opened it in 1954.
Mr. Crush, who was at the school from 1926-35, won his Kent cricket cap in 1948 and was president of the Old Pharosians’ old boys’ association in 1957.
The re-opening ceremony was during the tea interval at the annual cricket match between the School and the Old Pharosians.
The war memorial recalls the sacrifice of over 80 old boys of the school who died in the Second World War.
The headmaster introduced guests at the ceremony including governors, staff, parents and friends.
Dr. Lott congratulated Jenners of Folkestone on their work and spoke of the assistance given by the KCCC property service department. Maurice Smith. Bill McNeil and Colin Henry put in a lot of work installing electricity for an alarm system and other purposes.
The match between the Old Boys and the School resulted in a draw.
CRICKET MATCH. OLD BOYS v. SCHOOL, 6th July, 1985.
OLD BOYS: M. Palmer, c. San Emeterio, b. Sadler 62. T. Padfield, b. McBride 15. N. Upton, b. Monger 29. N. Hopkinson, c. & b. Sadler 18. R. Durrant, c. & b. Pennington 10. I. Pascall, not out 8. J. Morgan, not out 15. Extras 11. Total 168 for 5 declared. J. Bird, R. Gretton, J. Kremer, W. Nadin did not bat.
SCHOOL: J. Corless, c. & b. Morgan 4. P. Castle, c. Durrant, b. Bird 11. J. Sadler, c. Gretton, b. Bird 2. M. Castle, c. Nadin, b. Morgan 6. M. Gabriel, c. Nadin, b. Kremer 23. R. San Emeterio, b. Bird 6. K. Hall, not out 23. Jock McBride, not out 21. Extras 5. Total 1 01 for 6. J. Morgan bowled 11 overs, 8 maidens, 2 wickets for 8 runs. J. Bird bowled 14 overs, 3 wickets for 44 runs. J. Kremer bowled 6 overs, 1 wicket for 9 runs.
Next year’s match will be on the comparable Saturday, 5th July, 1986.
SCHOOL TEAM PHOTOS 1974 to 1984. 1st TEAMS SOCCER, RUGBY, CRICKET
All these team photos are missing from the collection now stored in albums in the school. Anyone who can loan one or more of these photos to the school can be assured that a copy will be made and the original will be returned safely to the owner.
CRICKET AVERAGES 1985
D. Aslett. Innings 23. Not out 1. Highest score 174. Runs 732, Average 33.27.
C. Penn. Overs 124.4. Maidens 17. Runs 466. Wickets 14. Average 33.28. He scored one century and had an average of 20.
Kent cricketers will be pleased that Richard Ellison headed the first class bowling averages with 65 wickets at an average cost of 17.20, the first Englishman in seven years to achieve this distinction ahead of overseas players.
The Kent batsman with the best average was 57th in the English list with an average of 37.52.
The Chairman of the Kent County Cricket Club has written: Derek Aslett was baffled by his loss of form, as we all were, but we are very hopeful that he will be staying with us. We certainly do not want to lose him.
Aslett has gone off to spend the winter in Australia, coaching and playing, and will make up his mind about re-signing while he is there.
More recently we are glad to learn that a two-year contract has been signed. His success will brighten our next two summers.
DATA USERS PROTECTION ACT
For more than ten years the O.P. Association’s list of members’ names and addresses has been held on a computer, chiefly for the convenience of obtaining addressed labels for postage.
Under the above new Act your officers are required to seek your consent to this information being so held. Should any member object he is asked to notify the editor in writing.
NEWS OF THE SCHOOL
The return to the school of the Reverend Dr. Michael Hinton as Guest Speaker, with Mrs. Hinton to present the awards, made this a quite exceptional occasion.
The oratory of the two Headmasters was as distinguished as it was appropriate.
The National Anthem, with fanfare and accompaniment of trumpets and organ, set the standard for musical items during the evening. The Chamber Orchestra played Mozart; the Chamber Choir of senior members of the two grammar schools showed their mastery of fa-la-la; a Concert Wind and Brass Ensemble were joyously applauded; and the school choir reinforced the reputation for music that this school now enjoys.
Senior boys seemed to control proceedings, The Head Boy welcomed Dr. and Mrs. Hinton; and at the end of the evening expressed everyone’s thanks to them for the eloquence and grace they had brought to this Guest Evening, Other boys handed to Mrs. Hinton generally the right awards to deserving recipients, The smallest boys in the school presented flowers to Mrs. Hinton and Mrs. Colman.
Headmaster asked himself whether he had kept faith with the dynamic Mr. Whitehouse, the rock-like Christian sincerity of Mr. Booth and the scholarship of Dr. Hinton. He felt that the boys of today were courteous and friendly, their scholarship matched with humility. Of those who took ‘O’ level exams, 84% obtained at least four passes at Grade C or above. The sixth form boys were gentlemanly and courteous but insufficiently devoted to work. There were however Oxbridge successes. Five present sixth form boys were members of the Kent Under 19 soccer XI. Duke of Edinburgh awards had been gained. An expedition last year to the Gambia would be followed by one to Samarkand. There are to be new computer resources. Even some interior decoration may be on the way.
New links with local industry are to be forged under the direction of Sir Robin Haydon, Old Pharosian and a school governor. Closer links with Europe and its languages will be assisted by the Lord Cockfield, Old Pharosian and European Commissioner, Headmaster expressed his pleasure that Old Boys so frequently visited the school; and he spoke of the assistance received by the school from the Association, Two prizes were presented from the Association, one to an R.A.F. Cadet holding a pilot’s licence.
Dr. Hinton, in his address, advised the public not to take the clergy too seriously. Some joker had compared the clergy to bus-conductors, ringing bells, taking money and telling people where to get off.
He urged his listeners to Look and to Laugh (one boy in Dr. Hinton’s time here had sent him detailed instructions for emigration to Australia): to Live in a spirit of co-operation rather than competition: and to Love, following the Maker’s instructions, to love Him with the whole of your being and love your neighbour as yourself.
The present writer, and no doubt many other Old Pharosians present, were left with the feeling that the school was getting along remarkably well without them.
‘A’ level passes were gained in the following 21 subjects by 60 candidates: Art, Ancient History, Biology, Computer Science, Design and Craft (metal), Engineering drawing, English, Further Maths, French, Geography, German, Government and political studies, History, Latin, Mathematics, Mathematics with statistics, General music, Nuffield Chemistry, Physics, Religious studies and Theoretical music, At ‘0’ level, passes were obtained in 27 subjects.
Mr. George Dixon, who taught French at school from 1953 to 1957, corresponds with Mr, Reg Payne.
Mr. Reg Payne taught at school from 1951 to 1981 lives in Greenwich and recently returned from a visit to Tanzania. The sun tan was still in evidence when he came to the London Reunion.
Mr. Bernard Denham left £10,000 to Charlton Church, where he had long been churchwarden and treasurer,
The R.A.F. Cadets spent a week in the summer at R.A.F. Upavon on Salisbury Plain, They flew a light aircraft, went on a 15-mile walk, slept in the open air and took part in sports, Sqn,-Ldr Ian Philpott and Major Hoeren were in charge of the party.
Justin Parker, aged 14, wrote an essay on “What engineering has done for me.” He won £50 and received a Times Atlas of the World from the chairman of British Aerospace.
The Chief Scout’s Award has been presented to 15-year-old Darren Appleton, of Dover Grammar School.
Darren, a member of the 15th Dover (St. Andrew’s) Scout Group, received the award from district commissioner Mrs. Jill Rook.
Pupils from both Dover Grammar Schools completed a 10-hour sponsored debate to raise £145 for the Kent branch of the Motor Neurone Disease Association of which Mr. Bird is chairman.
MUSIC IN THE SCHOOL
The Director of Music was pretty busy through the summer. In May he was director of music and conductor for the Dover Operatic Society’s production of Hello Dolly at the Town Hall.
Then in July he presented The Messiah, first in St. Clement’s Church, Sandwich and then in Charlton Church, Dover. The soloists included one Old Pharosian together with friends of school music while many boys sang and played in the orchestra and chorus. The Charlton congregation gave the performance a standing ovation.
At the end of term an Entertainment for a Summer’s Evening took the place of the familiar, much loved Summer Miscellany. It was not possible to detect any difference except the change of title. The quality was consistently pleasing throughout, with masters and Old Pharosians contributing to a varied programme.
The main school choir was not involved in that programme because they were to depart two mornings later to sing Evensong and Communion services in Coventry Cathedral.
Sunday, 15th September. “The Messiah” in St. Margaret’s Church
The two performances of Handel’s Messiah during July had been so well received that this best loved of all oratorios was again presented, this time as one of the many tributes to the departing vicar, the Reverend Talbot Easter.
There were some changes of personnel. Two eleven-year choristers sang in the same choir as several Old Pharosians. There were a good number in the choir who could not be members of any school for boys.
“Friends of the School” is the expression used and who would be without friends?
There were some economics required by limitation of space in a small church. Soloists came into view when required to sing. The Old Pharosian baritone soloist also attended to the tympani as a part-time occupation.
The whole being greater than the sum of the parts, one could say without any reservation that everyone in the crowded church had a splendid evening. The vicar was deeply moved by the emotive occasion and warned us that Adrian would one day be whisked away to a cathedral.
At the end of September St. Mary’s Church arranged a dedication festival after 900 hundred years of its history. The Dover Grammar Schools provided chorus and instrumentalists for a concert and the chamber choir sang Evensong by candlelight.
3rd and 4th October
The Church of St. Mary, Dover now has an Annual Week at the season of harvest thanksgiving.
On Thursday evening the choir and instrumentalists of the Boys’ Grammar school and the Chamber Choir of members of the two grammar schools gave a recital of great variety and high quality. The choir sang “How lovely are thy dwellings fair” by Brahms and “I was glad” by Parry, which many Old Pharosians will remember from 1981.
On the following evening the Chamber Choir sang Evensong by candlelight. The service of Evensong has its own beauty even when sung by three or four choirboys to ten individuals who have come in from the cold. On this occasion the quality of the singing in a setting of such splendour warmed the hearts of a large congregation, all of whom will hope that this festival can be an annual addition to the year’s most enjoyable occasions.
Sunday, 13th October at 3.15 p.m.
A very civilized afternoon was spent listening to a varied programme of piano duets, with singing by the Chamber Choir of boys and girls, as well as solo singing by Jean Lewis who not only gives her time and talent very generously to the school but also, as a music teacher in a primary school, sends us young trebles already well schooled in matters musical.
Saturday, 9th November
On a night of wind and rain, quite a reasonable audience enjoyed a concert by an Old Pharosian baritone, Geoffrey Horton, his accompanist, the school’s Dixielanders and several instrumentalists. Concerts of this sort contribute to the musical life of Dover and add at least £50 to the resources of the school’s Friends of Music.
Concert on 25th November
The Folkestone and Hythe Orchestra gave a concert that was really a final rehearsal for performance at the Leas Cliff Hall next evening.
The main interest which attracted a considerable audience was Adrian Boynton’s appearance as soloist in the first movement of Schuman’s piano concerto in A minor.
Evening Concert, Sunday, 8th December
On the wettest evening of a very wet week, when Noah’s Ark Road fully justified its name, a remarkably numerous company came and sat at tables to hear seasonable music by the Betteshanger Colliery Band and seasonable songs by the Chamber Choir and two good soloist friends of school music, Jean Lewis and Peter Booth. Performers and audience seemed to enjoy the start of a busily musical Christmastime.
Monday, 9th December.
Come Christmas Carolling in a Town Hall full of Dover Christians come together to sing and hear the Christmas story. The programme of carols and readings was arranged by Adrian Boynton with the school choirs leading most of the musical items and an Old Pharosian on the organ. A collection was taken for Crisis at Christmas.
Wednesday, 18th December. Carol Service in Charlton Church
“Better than ever” was agreed by all as they came out of church. Every year is a vintage year. The leading boy treble has had so much experience and this must be the last Christmas we shall hear his voice.
Stephen Yarrow, Old Pharosian, sings and plays the organ more professionally at every visit: the members of the choir start so small and grow up to be members of the chamber choir. When they sing, the congregation holds its breath and you can hear the general relaxation as the last notes come to a close and rise to the rafters. There are indeed carols for all to sing: and a few brief readings of the Christmas story; and a prayer and a blessing. It is the end of a long, difficult term but by a magic all his own the Director of Music sees that still their heavenly music floats o’er the weary world: and each year again comes round the age of gold.
NEWS OF OLD BOYS
Edward Doran (1927-30), aged 71 years, died on 25th June, 1985.
Brian Dowle, an hereditary Freeman of Dover, died on 16th December, 1985. A guest-house proprietor in Folkestone, he leaves a widow, a son and two daughters.
Dan Grinsted (1914-23). On a grey November afternoon a large number of friends said farewell to a man of character who had been well known for his many-sided participation in community life. Until overtaken by age and illness Dan was a regular attender at the O.P. Annual Dinner and at the Pharos Lodge. His experience at Lloyds Bank made him of service as treasurer to church and many societies in the town. As Rev. Patrick Jones said in Charlton Church, Dan will never suffer again. We express sympathy with his wife whom we see frequently at school concerts.
Major Joseph George Licence (1913-17) retired from the Army Education Corps and died, aged 83 years, on 12th May, 1985 at Yalding.
Pat Meadows died recently at the age of 73 years.
Keith David Parks (1975-82), aged 20 years, was killed in a cycling accident in the Alkham valley. The school was represented at the funeral service in Temple Ewell Church on 3rd June.
G. N. Plews (1922-30) died on 16th September in Queen’s Hospital, Croydon. He had been a prisoner of war in the Changi Camp in Malaysia and worked on the infamous railway. He was a frequent visitor to the school on Old Pharosian occasions.
John Kenneth Thompson, C.M.G. (1922-31) went from school to King’s College, London and Lausanne University. He was a B.A., A.K.C. and held a Diploma of Education in Modern Languages. He taught and held various government offices in the West Indies. During the 1939-45 war he worked in government offices in London and then in Washington, 1950-53. Thereafter he was involved in Technical co-operation and other Commonwealth matters, World Health Organisation and the Royal Commonwealth Society for the Blind. Among his more recent appointments have been Directorship of the Commonwealth Institute in London and of the Colombo Plan Bureau. He lived at 9 Grove Way, Esher, Surrey and leaves a widow and two sons. He died on 8th August. A service as a memorial tribute was held in St. Martin-in-the-Fields at the end of September. His two sons read lessons and the Vice-President of the Commonwealth Society for the Blind gave the address. A distinguished and very numerous congregation paid tributes by their presence to a man of many achievements.
After articles on our Two Cricketers and then our Two Bishops we now tell of
OUR TWO AUTHORSBOTH HISTORIANS
JACK RAVENSDALE (1931-39) has been engaged in historical research since the nineteen-sixties. The title History on your Doorstep, written for the B.B.C. in 1982 seems to express his main interest. He lives near Cambridge and his East Anglian Landscapes represents his love of “great clouds along pacific skies”. He also has an affection for Cornwall and I have read with pleasure his book recently published on the geology, archaeology, history and geography of that county.
He has seen and described Australian landscapes but he is now happily returned to East Anglia working on The Domesday Inheritance, nine hundred years after the Conqueror’s commissioners made the first survey of the English landscape.
BOB UNSTEAD (1926-34) is also a man of East Anglia and says that, now in his seventieth year, he has retired from writing, but one is slow to believe that so productive a pen can lie passively at rest. He has written 54 books, mainly school histories, and edited another 53. He went from the Dover County School to Goldsmith’s College and so into teaching and the second world war.
When peace returned he became Head of a large school in Hertfordshire but found time to write articles and reviews. Some of his reviews of school history books were less than complimentary so he was invited to do better. His own preference has been for plenty of pictures to illustrate the story of changing living conditions across the ages. His books clearly met a need for several have each sold a million copies and have gone to the ends of the earth.
In my own retirement I enjoy reading about my own lifetime, filling gaps left in the framework of memory. No has better served my purpose than Unstead’s Britain in the 20th century.
He has travelled widely so as to see for himself, always learning through historical study more about human character and behaviour. Perhaps this explains why so many headmasters are historians.
Both our authors are ready to express appreciation of foundation stones laid in Dover, tributes being paid to such legendary teachers as Miss Rookwood and “Ferdie” Allin, the former teaching English and the other Latin with a Scottish accent.
Both authors would approve of the Environmental Studies now much enjoyed by First Form boys in the school, combining history and geography with much out-of-school experience.
NEWS OF OLD BOYS
L. H. R. Abbott (1925-32) wrote to the Headmaster in October and sent two historical books for the school’s use. Before the war he was Treasurer of the O.P. Association, when he was a solicitor in Castle Street. He went into military service which ended in work for the Military Government of Germany. He stayed there for a further two years with the Control Commission before returning to live first in Shrewsbury and later in Wolverhampton, resuming his work as a solicitor. He is now retired at Dereham in Norfolk.
G. C. Austin was secretary to the London branch of the Old Pharosians in 1928 and has now moved from the Dover Gateway flats because of hovercraft noise and has peacefully settled in Canterbury at 107 Old Dover Road.
E. H. Baker (1922-30) removed recently from Maidstone to Moretonhampstead in Devon. When the editor visited him recently he departed loaded with memorabilia of Dover, the school, the Old Pharosians and Kent cricket. Much material will be transferred to the Archivist.
David Bean (1976-83) passed his HND exam in Electricity and Physics at Kingston Polytechnic.
Bernard Bechet (1951-56) wrote from Hutchins School, Sandy Bay, Tasmania where he teaches, having a B.A. degree from Monash University, Victoria. His main subjects are English Literature and History “which would stagger anybody who taught me at Dover”. He is studying for a degree in Librarianship: and has a cottage on the coast where he has a two-ton sloop. The school’s history goes back to 1840, the oldest continuous school in Australia.
Michael Bingham was a Master Mariner with the P. & O. line and in 1963 became an hereditary freeman of Dover. He now lives in Derbyshire and has been appointed chairman of a Manchester based firm making textiles and aircraft components.
Harry Blackford (1928-32) who lives in Coventry very kindly met the school choir when they sang services in Coventry Cathedral in July. He tells the editor that he met his cousin, D. G. A. Sanders in February. Harry Blackford may be unique in that he began his schooling in Ladywell, continued in Frith Road and then went to Astor Avenue were he was Head Prefect in 1932. In those days it possible for a boy to enter the school aged eight and leave when he was nineteen.
Michael Bodiam (1944-49), master of the cross-channel ferry Vortigern, is President of the Dover Rotary Club.
Dr. Peter Burville (1946-51) after more than a third of a century with British Telecom has taken early retirement and set up a consultancy in the fields of Information Technology and Project Management. He is now Vice-President of the O.P. Association.
Roy Carter (1942-47) received the O.B.E. in the last Birthday honours, mainly for his sterling work at the time of the assassination in Bombay last November. There is another Old Pharosian, Kim Knight, on the staff in Bombay.
Colin Chapman (1943-50) did National Service with the R.A.F. and then spent 20 years with Curry’s, the electrical firm. More recently he has been in the tourist industry in the West Country and has now returned to Dover to run a shop. Remembered as a cricketer at school, his present favourite pastime is angling.
Mervyn Cooke (1974-81) has just been awarded an M.Phil. degree in Musicology at King’s College, Cambridge where he is currently working toward a Ph.D. while at the same time teaching the undergraduates.
Eric J. Crofts (1932-42) retired early this year from his post as Projects Officer in the Junior Division of the National Trust. He had organised for nearly twenty years the Acorn camps for volunteers working on Trust properties. His work was recognised by the award of the M.B.E. in this New Year’s Honours.
Dr. L E. Culver (1937-44) is admissions tutor at Imperial College of Science, London.
George Curry (1927-36) has again been on his travels from his base in Florida. He went on a five-week tour during September and October giving lectures arranged by the British Council and the English Speaking Union of the Commonwealth in Canada. He spoke in Montreal and Ottawa after the tour and returned “home” for a visit to London.
Danny da Costa (1952-57) may live in the memory of those who taught him. He lives in Torquay and his quoted objections to urban renewal include. . . “If this goes through it’ll be the last straw” and “When I first heard of the compulsory order, my reaction was to sell up and get out. Then I thought ‘Why should I be told what to do? I’ll fight it’.”
Geoffrey Dale (1975-82) has gained a B.A. Honours degree in geography at Manchester University.
C. G. Dench (1964-70) is writing avant garde music for French Television.
A. C. Dench (1967-71) went to Canterbury Technical College and is doing well in engineering.
M. G. Dench (1973-80) is working in the Dover Hoverport.
John Dicks (1975-82) was awarded a 2.2. degree in chemistry from the University of Reading.
Denis Doble (1948-55) is now Deputy High Commissioner in Calcutta. He can be reached via F.C.O. (Calcutta), King Charles Street, London S.W. 1A 2AH.
P. A. Flood (1970-77) is now manager of a long-established Kent firm, Spain Brothers, Chartered Accountants in Tonbridge.
Councillor Gledhill (1968-73) is general manager of a freight forwarding agency in the town and has been elected deputy mayor.
Arthur Gooding (1905-09) wrote recalling distant days in 1911 and 1912 when as a student in Marseilles, aged 21, he played rugby for the Olympique de Marseille.
Andrew Griggs has been awarded his pilot’s wings and flies Jet Provost aircraft from R.A.F. Church Fenton.
Richard Gretton (1965-73) has moved from teaching at Dane Court School, Broadstairs to take an appointment as Assistant Examinations Officer with the South-East Regional Examinations Board. In addition to responsibility for seven C.S.E. subjects he has to make a pilot study of a new school leavers’ Record of Achievement which will give every leaver a record of a wide coverage of his school life. Richard recently obtained an M.A. (Education) and has ideas for further studies relating to his new appointment. With his wife and son he now lives at Broadstairs but is likely to move to Tunbridge Wells.
David Hannent (1957-64) a chartered surveyor, has plans to expand the Dover computer firm Solitaire in Castle Street. They have a contract for freight operations and can provide computer hardware and software to local businesses.
Trevor Heaver (1949-55) went to Balliol as a geographer and afterwards to an American University in the Middle West. He obtained a teaching appointment in the University of British Columbia where he is now Head of the Department of Transportation. He has recently published a book on Railway Pricing. His wife is an accountant and he has a son at university and a daughter at high school. Mr. W. G. King visited the family when touring this summer. The Heaver family expect to visit England next summer.
David Hinton (1965-68) worked with London Weekend TV on the South Bank Show and last year received one of four commendations for the BAF television award. This year he has been one of three nominated for a further award in the USA.
The Rev. Dr. Michael Hinton, Headmaster from 1960-68, was licensed as assistant priest in charge of Shepherdswell and Coldred on 21st September. He now lives in the vicarage at Shepherdswell.
Len Howell (1970-77) gives polite and cheerful service in Dover’s Market Square branch of the National Westminster Bank. He has completed his final Institute of Bankers’ examinations. His interests outside working hours include photography and the Rotaract Club.
R. Ibell (1946-51) after 32 years in the Royal Navy, is now working in the sales department of a design engineering firm at Ross on Wye where he has lived for the last twelve years with his wife and three children.
Bruce Jarvie (1958-65) is a housemaster at The King’s School, Peterborough and is secretary to the Old Boys’ Association of that school.
Mark Johnson (1978-83) has completed his initial training at the Royal Navy Submarine School and wishes to qualify as an electrical marine engineering mechanic. In his spare time he enjoys water ski-ing, hang gliding, parachuting and diving.
The Rev. W. Alex Law (1915-20) wrote to school after his memories were revived by the Harry Secombe TV show in which the school choir appeared. He wrote of his entry seventy years ago to the Junior School on Priory Hill, with other added comments of great interest. He enclosed a detailed account of a Swiss tour he had recently completed so he can belie the feebleness of foot and other failings described in “Forty Years On”. He lives at 72 Norrington Road, Maidstone ME15 9XD.
H. H. Madams (1922-30) wrote from his home in Bodmin in response to the invitation to long-standing members to top-up their life subscriptions by contributing to present-day costs. He is an author who has travelled and met other Old Pharosians in such far-away places as Fiji and New Zealand.
William Marshall (1975-82) has taken his Selwyn College choir on a summer tour that included Mass in Westminster Cathedral, Evensong and concert in St. James’s Church, Sussex Gardens, a concert in St. Martin-in-the-Fields, Evensong in St. Paul’s Cathedral and a concert in Ealing Abbey. During the year his choir has sung in several cathedrals. He is also off to Canada. He used the word “exciting” twice in his letter.
The Rt. Rev. Eric Mercer (1929-36) with his wife and two grown-up children has retired to Wiltshire where he can devote more time to his favourite pastime, fly-fishing.
Stephen Mitchell (1967-74) graduated from Warwick University and has had further success in Building Society examinations. He is manager of the Whitstable and Herne Bay branches of the Woolwich Building Society.
W. T. Moore (1921-28) lost his wife recently after a distressing illness which surgery could not repair. They had been married for 45 years and were in every respect partners in life’s activities. She was at all times a most gracious and friendly lady and we all extend to Bill our deepest sympathy.
Bill Newman (1973-80) has been elected student president of the London Hospital Medical College. He is also student representative on the college’s academic board and co-chairman of the medical education committee. When in Dover he was a member of the Old Pharosian Committee.
Colin Padduck (1928-38) lives at Al Jouf, Saudi Arabia and wrote with references to the Royal Tank Regiment in which he and the Editor have an interest. He also wrote to Jack Ravensdale expressing his pleasure on reading his book on English Local History: and Jack was not displeased that his book had given pleasure in the sands of Arabia.
Michael Redman (1955-60) has been awarded a medal for long service and good conduct in the police where he has worked on the C.I.D. side.
Roland Robertson, A.R.C.O. (1975-80) has left King’s College, Cambridge with a 2nd Class degree and is in Manchester training to sing in opera.
Brian Saunders (1974-81) has received a B. Education degree in music at Lancaster University. He began teaching at a Merseyside Primary School in September.
J. M. Saunders (1922-28) who lives in Australia, lost his wife a few years ago and remarried in July of this year. He hopes to bring his new wife to England in 1986.
Julian Sampson (1970-77) has won a top prize in.the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors exam. He took a 1 st class geography degree at Queen Mary College, London and then gained an M.Sc. at Wye College before going into agricultural surveying.
Jeremy Saynor (1977-82) obtained a degree in law at Leeds University and goes to Guildford Law School for his solicitor’s examination.
Colin Smithen (1957-62) is a member of the Capel Action Group seeking to divert traffic from the A20 highway that bisects their village.
G. A. Stourton (1927-34) first went to Dover Engineering Works as a draughtsman and then went to Shoreditch Training College. From 1937 onward he taught at Dartford and at Chislehurst, returning to the latter after six years in the army from 1940 to ’46. After a spell at Dulwich College he then settled at Gravesend Grammar School for thirty happy years, teaching craft, technical Drawing and being in charge of the 5th form and all Careers guidance. He is now retired and living in Gravesend. One of his handicraft tutors at Dover and later at Shoreditch was Mr. H. W. G. Hazelden.
Peter Stone (1974-80) is at the London College of Music. He has obtained his A.L.C.M. as a pianist and I hear that he is practising for further examinations.
Norman Sutton (1909-12) now lives in Kearsney Manor Nursing Home where he is visited daily by his very busy son Terry.
P. K. Sweby (1969-76) has made great progress in the mathematical world. After a first degree he has studied in America, gained a Ph.D., and is now doing advanced work at Reading University.
Frank Tapley (1919-26) very kindly let me see a letter written to him in 1981 by his friend from schooldays, the late S. T. “Toby” Newing. The letter contained tributes to Mr. Whitehouse and Mr. Tomlinson. Mr. Whitehouse was “good at selecting staff. . . and I regard F.W. in terms of some admiration and affection. . . I have met several other Heads but none who would do more for their pupils’ interest than Freddy.” The writer recalls a very moving poetry lesson given by J. Tomlinson, mathematician, and adds that both Mr. Tomlinson and Mr. W. E. Pearce could have been university teachers.
Paul Taylor (1973-81) successfully completed his landscape course at Worcester, then spent about six months travelling in Europe before coming home to refill the bank account by work in the docks. He is now at Swansea University taking a course in Cartography.
David Thomas (1970-77) lecturer in geography at Sheffield, has an article of the January issue of the Geographical Magazine. He makes a comparison of ancient and new deserts in Southern Africa where he had much field experience: and he draws attention to problems in Southern Africa that are comparable to much-publicized disaster areas bordering the Sahara.
Peter Walker (1965-72) a qualified accountant, has been appointed company secretary at Hoverspeed.
N. A. Upton (1970-77) has had his fill of life as a business salesman and is going to NE London Polytechnic as a mature student to read Law for the next three years.
Van der Wal (1956-61) is area manager in Dover for the Refuge Insurance Co.
Stephen Whaley (1968-75) graduated at York University and while preparing for his degree spent a year in Strasbourg. He then worked with the chaplain in York District Hospital and then went to Durham University to study for the church, finally being awarded a 1st class degree.
Peter Wilberforce (1947-54), now a retired dental surgeon, received an Open University degree in April.
Alien Williams (1975-82) is departmental manager of the Band Q store in Hastings.
David Wilmshurst (1973-80) gained a 2nd class degree in Leisure studies, conservation and recreation and has got a job with a West London Parks Department.
Barry Wilson (1950-57) is an E.E.C. principal administrator of the Common Market’s social affairs funds with special responsibility to the fish industry. He lives in Brussels.
Kevin Woods (1976-81) learned to fly a glider at 16 and has now obtained his private pilot’s licence and plans to enter the R.A.F.
Stephen Yarrow (1975-83) is now entitled to add the letters A.R.C.O. to his name. He is a student at the London College of Music and at weekends is organist and choirmaster at St. Mary’s Church, Dover. He continues to give valuable service to the school’s music department, as do many Old Pharosians.
MR. G. W. COOPLAND, D.Litt., M.A., B.Se. (Eeon)
An appreciation of this scholar and teacher was printed at the end of the Newsletter of July, 1985.
Mr. Coopland taught in the school from 1903, when it was known as the Municipal School, until 1913 when he moved to Liverpool University.
Arthur Gooding (1905-09) was taught by Mr. Coopland and has now presented to the school a book of essays written by colleagues at Liverpool and by other scholars at Adelaide, York, Paris, Nottingham, Hull and Oxford.
The book was published by Liverpool University to be presented to Emeritus Professor Coopland on his 100th birthday in 1985 but he predeased by three months this richly deserved honour.
It was pleasant to start this Newsletter with a contemporary moment of human kindness: and to end with some note of scholarship in the school’s earliest days.
No doubt these two attributes of scholarship and an atmosphere of good human relations have graced the school in the years between and will continue to do so in years ahead.