Will Pyke, one of Bournemouth School’s History Masters, is in the process of completing a study of Old Bournemouthians on the Western Front in the First World War. Mr Pyke’s work has involved building a database of some of the very first Old Bournemouthians, some of whom were in the school’s first intake, and is intended to provide a different approach to David Hilliam’s Tig’s Boys. Originally intended to cover the whole war, Mr Pyke reports that he narrowed the focus when he realised that he had 550 pages on the Western Front alone.
To celebrate the First World War Centenary, Mr Pyke has been invited to to give one of the series of Bournemouth Library lectures, Aspects of War, at 11am on Wednesday 8th July at Bournemouth Library. The talk will last for about half an hour, with tea, coffee and the opportunity to ask questions afterwards. A flyer for the event can be found here.
We are very sorry to announce that John Hawkins died on Monday evening at Bournemouth Hospital.
Mr Hawkins’ career at Bournemouth School spanned more than 40 years, as Chemistry teacher, Deputy Head and latterly examinations officer. During his time at the school, he always supported the Association, serving many years on the committee and as President of the Old Boys’ Cricket Club. However for most of us, we shall remember him for his happy demeanour, livening up lessons or calming pre-exam nerves, to justly earn his nickname of “Happy Harry”.
David Spencer and Paul Beardshaw wish to thank everybody who has written or sent cards and e-mails.
Hugh Walker recently got in touch with the OBA. He had discovered a number of photographs and documents left by his father, Bernard Walker, who designed sets for a wide range of school productions from the 1930s until his retirement in the 1960s.
Mr Walker writes: “They’re a bit jumbled – difficult to identify dates, but at least some of the participants might recognize themselves and have positive reminiscences. I’ve included the stagehands too. I recollect that the programmes were all printed in the art room and particular boys had a hand in this.”
You will find the photographs below. Let us know in the comments if you recognise anybody – or yourself!
Emeritus Professor Geoffrey J Giles of the University of Florida’s Department of History writes:
Visiting from my home in Florida in the summer, I bought a copy of the excellent history of our town by Vincent May & Jan Marsh (Eds.), Bournemouth 1810-2010: From Smugglers to Surfers (Stanbridge/Wimborne: Dovecote Press, 2010). The photographs in the book are fresher and more remarkable than any other published history of the town. However, I did a double take at the photo of “Bournemouth School on East Way 1950s” on page 162. I’m sure this is wrong, and I’m hoping other Old Boys will confirm this. My recollection from my time at the school (1959-1965) is that there was nothing to the left of the caretaker’s house except a wrought-iron railing (I think!) leading directly to the Copse. But in this photo there are rather large new buildings. Am I right in thinking that this aerial photo in fact dates from much later?
Many of you have been in touch to ask after the article “Schools of War” that was published in the Bournemouth Echo on 10th September. The piece tells how Bournemouth welcomed pupils from Taunton School, who were evacuated from Southampton due to the German bombing campaign. The article was mentioned at the year’s annual dinner. Neil Bichard was kind enough to scan the piece to this PDF file.
September 2014 marks the 75th Anniversary of Bournemouth School occupying the East Way site. In the intervening years much has changed, but the pressure on the school’s accommodation and funding has remained. The school is now launching a 75th Anniversary Appeal with the intention of raising £75,000 by next September to refurbish the Lecture Theatre. Any donations would be gratefully received (cheques should please be made payable to ‘Bournemouth School Fund’) and sent to the school address.
Roger Shore has written to us to share a panorama photo (PDF, 2Mb) of the school from 1933. Roger writes:
My father was at Bournemouth School between 1929 and 1936. I followed in his footsteps between 1960 and 1967. There were six masters who taught both me and my father, although I can only identify five of them in that photo at present. That would be Messrs Cushion, Dodds (a truly dreadful man, as I’m sure you already either know, or will have heard!) Walker, Williamson and Wiseman. The 6th – Mr. Dixon (who went on to become deputy head) – I haven’t yet identified…
Roger is surely right that this may be of interest to some of you, although as he notes the very youngest in that photo will be at least 90 by now.
The Bournemouth Daily Echo reports that for the first time, Bournemouth School is admitting girls as pupils in the sixth form. Previously, BSG students had been able to study in the sixth form, but this arrangement was ended recently due to timetable clashes. The new girls will be full members of Bournemouth School. In a couple of years we will no longer be exclusively Old Boys. The full story is here.
School historian David Hilliam’s latest book, Tig’s Boys, is a collection of letters to a schoolmaster from the trenches of the First World War. You can purchase the book through Amazon here, and doing so will benefit the OBA.
I write on behalf of a friend of mine who was a pupil at your school 1939 to 1946. His name is John Douglas Jones who at the age of 80+ is still very active and living in Clifton, Bristol. Doug has only recently had to give up flying his sailplane at the Bristol & Gloucestershire Gliding Club. In the course of a conversation yesterday about schools we attended, Doug said he can remember the names of all his teachers during his time at your school except the name of the English Literature master.
Doug would be interested if anyone might be able to remember this teacher’s name.