Class 4a, Norton Board School c1958

t14729A photograph of my class in 1958 (Class 4A) at the Norton Board School.
What I find interesting is the size of the class – 52 children in 4A – a good illustration of the effect on education of the sudden surge in births in the immediate post war period.
The 4A Teacher, Mr. “Tombuck” Thomson, had no difficulty in controlling us despite being a very nice man: he was an outstanding teacher and got 34 of us through both parts of the 11 plus.

Photograph and details courtesy of Frank Bowron.

7 thoughts on “Class 4a, Norton Board School c1958

  1. Paul Graham sent out this list of names a while back…

    Rear row: John Herbert, Stuart Patterson, Geoff Coates, Keith Bellwood, B? Robertson, Norman Hardwick, David Roden, Cyril Scott, Kenny Rowbottom, David Langham, Steve O’Boyle, Paul Graham, Richard Hallett, David Martin, Paul Duckett, Andy Rigg, Frank Bowron,

    Middle row: Rita Jameson, Susan Scrimshaw, Gillian Hymer, Beryl Sanderson, Dorothy ?, Harriet Stannage, Barbara Robertson, Pamela Congreve, Susan Dedman, Carol Rogers, Dorothy ?, Patricia ?, Roberta Thompson, Janet Nicholson, Valerie Stewart, Jennifer Hall ?, Susan Gash, Maureen ?, Barbara Kelly?

    Front Row: Margaret Evans, Pauline ?, Florence Matthews?, Pat (Leeming)??, Kay Tinkler, Margaret Longstaff?, Vanessa Wilde?, Carol Peskin, Mr Thompson, Kay Dodsworth, Pauline Riley, Mary Cleeve?, Diane Cox, Susan Campbell??, Edith Welsh, Carol Ault, Pat Leeming?? (or Pat Lewis?).
    That makes 52 !! I think 34 passed both halves of the scholarship most of the rest passed one half to go to Richard Hind. (Paul Graham)


  2. I’m pretty sure in the 50’s at Oxbridge then 60’s at Fairfield Secondary Modern school the classes always catered for 40 or so pupils, or so I remember?. It seemed the norm in those days.


  3. My late brother appears in this photo he was one of those who passed the 11+. Even 4 years previous to this my 4A class with Mr. Lightfoot had over 40 in it. When I started teaching in Stockton in the early/middle 60’s I had over 40 pupils in my class though classes soon came down in numbers in following years to 30+.


    • I’m sorry to learn of Barry’s passing away, Derek.
      He compiled a list of names of the class – I still have it somewhere.
      I remember the boys names but just a few of the girls. We were kept separate in those days.


      • My apologies, Derek. It’s Paul of course.
        Time flows and names get of one’s earliest friends get overwritten by new acquaintances. The memories are real, though…


  4. I counted fifty-two students in that class! Our present-day teachers in British Columbia are fighting for smaller class sizes when the norm appears to be an established thirty children. Of course, size isn’t everything, is it?


    • There are two boys missing, Pete Jackson and Malcolm (?), so we’d have been 54. I was second bottom of the class as No.52 but made it through the 11 Plus.


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