13 thoughts on “Newham Grange School, 1949

  1. War time is the only time I can comment on. Norton board was my first school with good male and female teachers some of whom vanished when war was declared and then Richard Hind during the war when the teachers were too old or not fit enough to be called up, we had quite a few women teachers at that time. The women teachers had to send us to the head for corporal punishment to keep discipline, the only one who ever clipped my ear was the French Mistress, Miss Du— a name I have never remembered try as I may. It was expected that if you erred punishment followed. We never told our parents as that could bring down more punishment especially when the local Bobby caught us up to no good, lined us up then gave us all a good clip with his glove full of dried peas or beans, now that did hurt. Military discipline was all shouting or incarceration in the guard room and made to work from getting up to going to bed. I did my turn at it and was never physically abused. As I went up through the ranks it became more hit them in the pocket, up to three days pay could be stopped which was why I was asked why I did not bring men up on a charge, I knew they could not afford it plus there was never much need to. Tell them what you want, how it is to be done and why. The only comment I can make on schooling today is that my two young grandchildren are very polite, they do not get punished as we did although they are told what they are doing is wrong and why it is wrong. When they are in my house a couple of times a week they know I have no rules, once they knew they had this freedom they do not misbehave, there must be a moral there somewhere.

    Like

  2. It’s interesting reading about the treatment meted out to children in the past. In the 1940s, I believe, young men coming out of the Forces were encouraged to go into the teaching profession by offers of emergency training. This would have been no longer than a year, I suspect. Psychology courses would have been minimal and anyway, their military training would have led them to expect instant obedience. Combine that with the experiences many of them had during the war and it’s hardly surprising that they flew off the handle on a regular basis. I’m not trying to excuse – just give a possible explanation.

    Like

  3. For me to receive detention was nearly as bad as the cane. We were kept back for an extra half hour. This meant that through living at Norton I missed the school special bus and I then had to get 2 buses home. I only had one return bus ticket so if I didn’t have any change in my pocket it meant that I had to walk one of the journeys. This meant getting home at 5.30pm. Also you could not use your return ticket after 5pm unless signed by the teacher. I also had a paper round which I would miss.

    Like

  4. It’s been interesting reading the comments about the use of corporal punishment in schools. I have spent over 30 years teaching in secondary schools and whilst I was, on a few occasions, caned when I was at school it was not allowed during my career. One corrospondent on here suggests that detention should be used and that is exactly what we did. However, if a parent wrote in and said that their child wasn’t to do detention, then we had to accept that. So what alternative is suggested in such cases? In simple terms there wasn’t, and as such pupils ‘got away’ with any form of punishment for misdemeanours that they had been involved in.

    Like

  5. The use of the cane? It started in infants school Norton Board when you would be punished for many things. By the time we got to Mr Fisher or Mr Thompson’s class they would open a cupboard and allow you to to choose the weapon, Mr Thompson canes Mr Fisher straps of various sizes and thicknesses. Did I try them all? probably, did I deserve it? possibly, did it do any good? the jury is still out. At Richard Hind Mr Webster never did, Mr Rawlins once or twice but Mr Rosser saw more of my rear than my face. I once got a double dose for suggesting he leave his table against the wall instead of moving it each time he needed to swing his cane. Eggy Plummer was a board rubber thrower and when I threw one back went to stand in the passage by Mr Rossers door. There was a window to the girls school cookery room which would pop open and sometimes a jam tart or cake appear so it was worth it. The sports master, Mr Williams, the Egyptian swimming champion?? had his own way of dealing with us, a pair of boxing gloves and as I was learning boxing at the time he did not always escape the odd punch back. Sandy Dobing Art was so small I towered over him so he just screamed at me, you will get a job anywhere white washing toilets, true I hated painting and still do. The woodwork and Chemistry teachers were quite docile and at times the noise in their classes showed it. I could do no wrong for Miss English or Miss Dufney, my Mother taught me politeness to ladies was not negotiable, any reports reaching her ears on my misbehavior in front of ladies brought down the sword of Damocles on my head, ten minutes later we would be laughing together even though I still hurt. Father never once laid a hand on me. If you laid down and let them walk on you, accepted everything you were told as gospel, never queried anything, wore your cap on the school bus and did not eat apples in uniform in public then you could well escape. As I was not made to blindly obey and bent rules as if they were elastic it led to a beating. As father said, you must have earned it accept it and move on, not bad advice in the end.

    Like

  6. The use of the cane. The most barbaric punishment a child could have. I was in a class at RH when a boy did commit a punishable offence. As he was doing it the Head Master Rosser walked into the room. He took the boy just around the corner to his office and we could here the cane being used. 6 of the best. The boy returned to the class, sat down and then took a fit. (Not nice for the rest of the class to observe). Another occasion the Art Master Buckle who had a stool leg when he gave out punishment, on this day jabbed the stool leg into a boys stomach. He swore at the teacher and then was sent to the Head Master and was rewarded with the cane. Teachers should have a course in psychology as part of their training. There are others ways of punishment such as detention. People on this site have stated that the cane made them into better people in future years. To me it was my parents, without being beaten by them who gave out punishment accordingly. This made me the person I am today as well as my children. You gain respect not force it on people.

    Like

  7. I can almost picture Ray Irvin sorting out Mrs Atkinson so that she was not in charge of who could not play for Newy Grange’s teams. Not necessarily diplomatic!
    As to Benny’s observation about what I would think about vicious treatment of pupils.
    As a teacher and as Head of a secondary school in Halifax I encouraged staff to teach and control in such a manner as one would expect one’s own family to be treated. No matter how unruly it was better to encourage the best side of the nature and ability of that boy or girl.
    It does have its rewards. Ray Irvin was just one of the staff of Newham Grange to be highly regarded by pupils.

    Like

  8. I have not so fond memories of JoJo Atkinson and his wife who was not the nice teacher that Peter Hodgson describes, Mrs Atkinson once gave me the cane for some small misdemeanour, and in the process struck me across the wrist instead of the fingers where upon she declared that did not count as she had missed, and then proceeded to strike me across he fingers, to which I said something rude to her, she exploded at this, and banned me from all sporting activities with instant effect. I had to explain to the Sports Teacher Ray Irvine who was also Deputy Principal that I was unavailable for the football team and all other teams until further notice. The response was immediate and to my joy the ban was lifted. Mrs Atkinson was not my favourite teacher nor I her favourite pupil. Her husband Jojo Atkinson had a favourite trick he used on unruly boys in that he walked up beside them then kneed them on the side of the thigh muscle, a very painful experience I can tell you. I think some of us were deserving of some sort of punishment but he went too far some times. I am sure Ken Sawyer ex Richard Hind Teacher wouled be appalled at such treatment of pupils.

    Like

  9. TOJO Atkinson did get away with a lot which would not be tolerated today, he threw some chalk at a boy who was sitting at the desk in front of my sister, the boy ducked & the chalk hit my sister in the eye & she needed hospital treatment. The same TOJO was not to brave when my father appeared at the school to see the headmaster.

    Like

  10. I think that the Jean Curry in this picture is my husbands mother, she passed away when he was 18 months and he is trying to find her family. All we know is that she had 2 brothers and a sister. Her mothers name was Lily and her father David. If anyone knows more details on the Jean Curry in this picture, please would you let me know, I would really appreciate some help in our search. Thanx

    Like

  11. Yes Benny I remember TOJO Atkinson his wife was a teacher too at Newham Grange, He was Brutal to say the least .He would have probably been prosecuted for cruelty today . His wife was just the opposite a very nice teacher as I can remember.I also remember Pop Roberts “woodwork” showing his model train system to us, Pop Grainger “Sports” Flannels and sports coat quite a ladies man. Miss Curse and the day she got hit in the face with a Hockey stick “ouch”, Miss Greenwell. Miss Cook who I understand was still alive up to two years ago Joyce Fairley informed me.

    Like

  12. I think you have the dates wrong as I was in this class in 1949 which was class 3A, this photograph is year 2A, 1948. I came out of 2B in to 3A in 1948. the missing students are After Eddie Simpson Alan Goodman only recently deceased, after Alan McInnes it is John Wood who came from South Africa. My wife Marie Kennedy as she was then, that the Teacher Mr Atkinson caned her every day after she finished fourth in the Class instead of first in year 2A, for not fulfilling her potential.

    Like

  13. I can fill all the names in except two, maybe someone else can oblige for the two missing names. Back Row left to right. Peter Truby, Trevor Briggs, Les Fothergill. Second row from the back left to right. Don Walters, Mark Dolan, Peter Huggett, Frank Fishburn, Colin Booth, Frank Newton, Eddy Simpson, Not known. Third row from back left to right. Keith Britton, Tony Hutchinson, Terry Sparks, Joan Garnett, Betty Ostle, Margaret Wilkie, Amy Jones, June Ford, Irene Thomas, Alan McInnes, Not known, Lol Cann. Front row seated left to right. Iris Crofton, June Muldowney, Rita Rhea, Joan Mowbray, Mr Atkinson, Marie Kennedy, Jean Curry, Valerie Gaynor, Hazel moody.

    Like

Leave a Reply to Anon Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.