Jan SchoolDays

'A few childhood school memories - 'The Happiest Days Of Our Lives', I beg to differ on many occasions!!!  My schooldays were from 1960-1971. Why am I thinking about my school days I wonder?!

My earliest recollection of Lord Scudamore Primary School, Hereford from 1960, is having to drink a quarter pint of luke warm milk at 11am break time EVERY DAY. The straw would be poked through the silver foil and the teacher would be walking around the classroom talking loudly. "Drink up everyone, you will grow up with strong teeth and nails!"

Drink up your (warm) milk!!

But somehow this milk was not the same as mum's at home. I used to gag often and HATED it. Mum's milk was cool and fresh from the fridge, often made into a milkshake with Nestle powder. Lovely! To this day, I cannot bear warm milk!

 School bus

A bus very similar to one we used to name "The Cronk"

Moving on to Secondary Schoo in 1966l and lots of memories here. Too many to mention in one blog post! I went to Kington (Lady Hawkins) and used to catch a bus at 8 am for the twenty mile journey. My friends and I would stop at the corner shop on the way to the bus stop and stock up on Polo mints, chewing gum, sherbet lemons etc for the journey.

Why should I wear a uniform?

I was a rebel, (I know you cannot possibly believe this of shy little me.) I did not like the black and red striped tie, that was part of the uniform, so I would wear a red suede one that had been bought in a small shop in Magaluf in 1967. Majorca was very very quiet then and it was my father's annual treat to our family.  

My tie

My beloved red suede tie circa 1967 - looks pinkish here!

For some reason I thought that the red suede tie was a better alternative. Anyway, there were usually two teachers on the bus and if I made it to Kington with my red suede tie not being noticed by a teacher, I was very proud!! But of course the regulation one was replaced ready for assembly. It wasn't worth 50 lines, "I must wear the correct uniform". I still have this tie 48 years down the line. The regulation red and black one was shredded on my last day at school!

I was given 50 lines though once for throwing an apple core out of the bus window. It went straight into a field and I did not see any harm in this at all! The teacher thought differently. My twelve year old self was not impressed.

The radio has to be tuned to Radio 1!

In 1968 I was given an Alba radio for my birthday and Radio 1 was well and truly in vogue. I had this idea that I would smuggle this radio into my orange, yes orange, briefcase and play Radio 1 on the bus without the teacher hearing it. The buses used to be so old sometimes and so noisy that even at full volume, the radio could hardly be heard. I would press it against the window with the wobbly aeriel stretched to full length and try and get a signal.

Sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn't. But hearing Tony Blackburn with his breakfast show, somehow made the journey more bearable. And amazingly, I never had my radio confiscated! My friends and I used to beg the bus driver to let us tune the bus radio into Radio 1. It was always tuned to Radio 2, which of course was not "cool" back then!! I seem to remember one driver letting us do it once or twice.

I am good at mental arithmetic to this day

Lessons were mostly tedious and Needlework and Geography Mapwork certainly not my strongest concentration ones! I was sent outside the classroom door for talking on more than one occasion to stare at the wall. But I was good at English and History and enjoyed those. Science could be ok at times if we had a Biology teacher to look at who was particularly dishy to an innocent 12 year old!  Art was ok as was French. Maths was taken by a teacher who I swear was 100 years old. A spinster who was very strict and insisted on logarithms most weeks. YAWN. However, I was and still am very good at mental arithmetic!

No outdoor swimming PLEASE!

Games, indoors and outdoors were hideous and outdoor swimming was purgatory!! My lovely late mum would often write a note excusing me from swimming.

I could go on and on and may write a sequel in a few weeks, more and more memories are flooding back!

School days were never my happiest days. I did somehow pass 5 'O' levels and was employed a few days after leaving school in The Midland Bank, so I must have done something right!

Lead photo is of me in around 1965. My late mum did her best to cut my fringe straight, bless her!

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