Lincoln Christ's Hospital School

Lincoln Christ's Hospital School
Educating in Lincoln since 1090

 

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SCHOOL  MEMORIES

 

As a former student of the school who left in 2012 to study English at the University of Oxford, I wanted to get in touch with a post-university update. I graduated with a 2:1 in July 2015, and have just received an offer for teacher training with the Oxfordshire Teaching Schools Alliance, which I am absolutely thrilled about.

I remember fondly my best teachers at LCHS - Mrs Murphy, Mrs Capes, Mrs Hewitt, Mr Rees to name a few - and how they pushed me to be the best I could possibly be, and how inspiring they were. I will certainly keep them in mind as I embark on my teaching career. I also remember Mr Scully and Mr Thompson always being supportive and taking a real interest in how I was getting on, which was lovely.

I have returned to the school several times since going to university to talk to younger students about the importance of studying hard, and to mentor Oxbridge applicants. Although I am no longer in Lincoln very often, I am happy to provide personal statement support and interview tips to Oxbridge applicants via email should they need or want it.

All the best,

Alice

 

 

Have just finished reading Paper # 6 from the Archives “ Lincoln School in the

50s” by Peter Harrod and Co. Fired up the memory cells and I need to start crystallising.

I attended School from 1954 to 1961.

Form 3b  'Maggie' Ward . What an amazing lady she was. Flitting about the Art Room clinking her bracelets and forever applying hand crème. I don't know how many of Dr. Barnardo's lads I sent off

to Australia but those Cottage collecting boxes seemed to be everywhere !

Form  4a ' Trickle' Middlebrook. (Maths). Had the ability to de-mystify algebra. A great teacher.

Form 5a  Either 'Nobby' Lake. (History).  Aka 'Puddle'..what a delightfully inventive “Nom de Nick”. Not at all unkind but perfect for a Lake of small stature or  'Alf' Sutton.( Maths). I remember Alf chiefly because the family lived opposite us in Bunkers Hill and daughter Rosemary attended  'The High School' ..as opposed to 'South Park'.

Form 5X ' Louie' Lowther ( Latin and English) . One cool dude was Louie.  Leather patches on the elbows of his sports jacket and I can't remember if he smoked a pipe or whether it was the passivity  of the Staff Common Room but he always gave off a worldly whiff. Great teacher too. 'Caesar's  Punic Wars' was a snip, especially if you had the translation ( 3/6d from Ruddocks ). Same applied   to Chaucer's Canterbury Chats'..'translated', that is, and probably the same price too!  Louie made    the class room come alive for me. There was always stuff  happening..even if only changing desks during Latin, where 'Pheasant' became 'Phasiana' and a blue braided jacket became a purple edged toga. Well, not quite, but I enjoyed L.L.L.L. ( Louie Lowther's Latin Lessons)

Form RM  Would have to have been 'George' Stollery.( Physics)  Absolute gentleman with a beautiful mind. His son Chris was in my year and also answered to 'George'. Had the best collection of army Dinkies I've ever seen !!

Form 6M ( 1 and 2)  Mr Dollery ( Chemistry). 'The Baron' and Deputy Head under 'Nimrod'.   Struck terror into the Lower School but once you entered his laboratorial realm, he wasn't too bad..provided you laughed at his jokes and didn't forget your lab coat. Copperplate with a piece of chalk and totally committed to making sure we all passed 'A' level. Fancied himself as the “Sheik     of Tweak” on the cricket pitch during the Annual Staff v School match.

GFF Franklin. 'Gaff'. (Headmaster) Taught us First Year French. “ Un bon grand pain. Through the nose, boy,through the nose”. We had to sign our homework, too. I can remember using just my surname and the exercise book being returned with “ You are not a lord yet, Pheasant” red inked at  the bottom of the page. A headmasters' headmaster with a sense of humour behind the half- moons.

Col PW Martin. 'Nimrod'. (Headmaster after 'Gaff' retired) Don't know who christened 'The Hunter' but I reckon 'Martinet' would have been more apt. Anyway, Nimrod dragged the school by the scruff of the neck into the 20th Century.

No more Wednesday arvos down the Astoria skating rink, wobbling around to Nancy Whisky's

“Freight Train” and watching Anita Kershaw spin my heart around. And who wanted to go to school on a Saturday morning, when you could be hunched over in one of the booths at Spouges Record Shop.

“School corridor traffic will maintain the rules of the road and keep to the left”. It took a while but     it made sense.

He didn't mind bending the cane either, did the Mighty Hunter. I remember receiving six of the best  as a Sixthformer for plunging into the school pool on a hot Sunday afternoon. “You” “Don't” “Own”

“The”  “Place”  “Pheasant”

Miss Heathcote. (School Secretary and Keeper of the Keys to the Inner Sanctum). Propriety forbids   me from divulging her sobriquet but suffice it to say that the sight of Miss H proceeding at a brisk  trot down the cloisters on a cold Winter's morn could turn a young lad's legs to jelly! Popular    rumour had it that a certain member of the staff suffered from jellied legs, too !.

'Tex' Granger.( French). Good teacher. My first (and only) pen pal came though Tex's insistence. He also took a combined Sixth form for “General Studies”or something like that. By this time,of course, the gap between Modern and Classic was widening at an ever increasing speed. 6C had sumptuous lodgings at the top of the second corridor and us poor Ms were out in the cold, formroom-wise. I do recall the Hall balcony as being home for a while !!

'Tex' was into Drama too.The school plays were always well received. I remember the sword fight    in “The Rajah's Ruby” or was it “The Rubay's Raja” ?? Great stuff.

'Johnny' Phillips ( English ). Real character, of tattered gowne was he. Master of the Shakespearean 'gobbet'  and Creator of  learning verbatim “ O young Lochinvar is come out of the West” as a Punishment Art Form. Son Giles was in my year.

'Ivan' Sexton ( General Science ). Good teacher of noble girth. He lived just down the hill from us. Can't remember what car he drove but I remember cadging a lift a couple of times

'Jim' Shirley ( Geography). Good teacher. Feisty is the word that springs to mind. I can see him  wrong footing the defence and nipping through to score a try in the Annual Staff v School rugby match. Even Nimrod took the field that day, albeit as referee.

'Sarge”Perry( P.E.)The wondrous first sight of the gym with the ropes out stimulated a fag's 'Johnny Weissmuller' gene into action ! Loved his discipline, did Sarge. I remember all too well being on     the receiving end of “Dido”..the splint..for kicking the  ball above the top wallbar in the gym.   Bloody stung too..and why “Dido”..the beautiful queen of Carthage ??  Sarge's distorted sense of humour ??

'Bill' Bailey. ( Woodwork). “Jack plane, Spokeshave and Gluepot”. ( A firm of Lawyers specialising

in Class Actions ??). I always seemed to be last to finish but Bill was there to help. A good teacher.

'Weg' Wilson ( History). Never quite connected with 'Weg'. He obviously knew his stuff but left me  in the Dark Ages.

'Bunny' Baker ( Religious Instruction ). Hugely interesting once you got him talking off the subject.

Keeper of  The School History and Composer of the School Song.

'Bucky” Howarth and 'Yogi” Avens. Never taught by them but I've put them together because they were co-pilots of the bus that took me on my first overseas trip. The  mountains and  glaciers of Norway, here we come ! The ferry to Bergen was a mal de meric disaster of vomitous proportion but the rest of the trip was brilliant. Trekking to the toe of the Briksdal glacier and then skipping stones across the ice green lake to destroy the pristine silence with whoops of schoolboy laughter.

Roped together to descend the snow covered slope of Mt. Skala ;on my birthday, too. Even managed to drop my rucksack when we unroped. Found it when we reached the bottom though. !! Great memories. Thankyou, School.

'Ringo' Rangely. ( Music, or rather, Musical Appreciation) A valiant attempt to tune Sixth Modern ears to the delights of Herr Beethoven. Already loved the music but could cheerfully bypass Symphonic theory.

'Twitch' Wiley ( Honestly can't remember his subject) But 'Twitch' epitomised the unerring ,and sometimes unkind, accuracy with which pupils bestow nicknames. Poor Mr.Wiley couldn't keep his nose still..and we'd sit there, waiting for him to come through the door. Ready..our nostrils flaring to be unleashed. Cruelty, thy name is a full classroom of fifth formers.

'JAB' Baxter and 'Shep” Shepherd. (The senior classics masters of eminence). JAB was the school Quartermaster and used to dispense new exercise books et alia from his storeroom on the second floor. He was right up to date with all the tricks of the trade and I only ever managed to 'outbook'   him once.

Mr Watson ( Maths)..I don't think we had a handle for him but he taught us in 6M2. I suspect he was  a bachelor because he frequently sported a day's growth and occasionally wore odd socks. Knew his subject but tended to fluster when 'Buzz' Humble ( our resident brainiac) posed a tricky one.

'Bosky' Wood ( French) Deputy Head under 'Gaff”.

Other teachers I remember by name only..Messers Mays, Mockeridge, Matherson, Duguid, Aikester, Wells -Cole. Any I've missed, I apologise to..because Lincoln School could not have happened without you.

Random memories:-

Prefects...7ft tall when you were a fag. And quite prepared to administer corporal punishment. I can remember receiving a flogging from a sadist by the name of Carter. I only cut through the hedge

instead of taking the steps down into the quadrangle but it was deemed worthy of “ reporting to the prefects' room to receive the appropriate punishment.”I ended up being a sub prefect but by that    time corporal punishment was well and truly the province of the teaching staff..if not pretty much phased out altogether. 'Nimrod' and 'Sarge' excepted ??

Winter used to see the icing-over of the playground and the commencement of serious slide action...until salted by the Caretaker. I can remember as a fag having the temerity to attempt the senior glissade, only to be tripped, resulting in chipped front tooth, by a fourth year named Enderby.   I wasn't the only small boy to be upended by Enderby, who obviously found it amusing and I   suspect, in today's climate of zero tolerance towards bullying, would have been called to task. I like  to think that he received his karmic trip somewhere down the line.!!

Winter also saw the lunch time snowball battles on the second field, although how we managed to race around after a helping ( generous, if you were table head !) of Mrs. Shirley's apple crumble,  I    don't know. Actually, the dish should  be called 'Crumble Apple”. My all time favourite!!

Dinner was served in two sittings and you queued up in the cloisters. The Dining Room was   arranged in tables, with eight boys to a table, and usually a sixth former at the head. Protocol   dictated that you took it in turns to collect the table's dinner tray from the service counter... but you had to wait for the “Ready. Steady. Go.” from the Staff  Table. How some of the smaller boys  managed to balance the loaded tray, I do not know. Last day of term was traditionally the turn of the table head to do the honours. And the food was brilliant. Thankyou, Mrs Shirley and Ladies.!

The mid morning free 1/3 pint of milk, crated for distribution in the cloisters at the main entrance,  always created a bit of a drinking frenzy. As a fag, and needing the nourishment, you had no chance ! (I might have over embellished  but it did get a bit rugged at times.)

Fortunately, I'd left school before the handout was discontinued, when the cry of “Margaret Thatcher Milk Snatcher” must have echoed through the cloisters.

Sports Days ; sprinting round the 400yd Oval to make sure that Bluecoat triumphed.

Frantic games of '30-a-side-take-no-prisoners soccer' in the playground.  'Tinker' Bell waltzing  around with the tennis ball glued to his feet.

Rushing into the library after lunch to grab a chess set.

Playing 'shove ha'penny' on the top corridor window ledges.

Cliff Hewis and Willie Varcoe trying to tune us up for “Did you hear the fond tale of the sweet nightingale”...to be performed at the InterSchool Music Competition.When all we wanted to do was check out the female opposition.

The Film Club. Waiting for the projector to rewind...frequently.

Cross Country..watching 'Ivan' Vickers down his milk and raw eggs drink before the 5 mile race     and secretly hoping he'd throw up half way round. I think I finished 9th in my final attempt.

School Assemblies. Nimrod striding towards the stage, gown swirling. He had a wicked sense of humour. I can remember at the end of one assembly, he held up a comb, announcing '' If Hank B. Marvin would report to the Office, he can collect his comb.” Everyone knew who our Hank B. was...a cheeky lad with the signature horn-rimmed glasses, hair style and never without the comb in  his hand. How to achieve instant notoriety. Wish I could remember his name.

The school photograph. I still have mine for 1955 and 1958. Serried ranks of solemn faces. I always wished that 'Chuck' Frow, a boarder with real attitude, had made good his intention of being 'taken twice' by sprinting from one end of  the posed assembly to the other as the camera moved. The ultimate Double exposure. But it never happened.

We were a chosen few in 6M2. P.L.F. 'Pete' Edmonds, who had a twin sister 'Pat' at Girls High.  'Smiler' Walters..joined the Navy and became a Nuclear Submarine Officer, I think. 'Buzz' Humble..saved our collective bacon on numerous Maths homework problems. 'KJ' Bean. I accidentally pulled him off the stage during PE one day..in fourth year I think. Thought I'd broken   his wrists. Dido'd by Sarge to make sure I didn't do it again !  Thanks for the memories, guys.

My last day at school. A Sixth Former by the name of Hunter marching up and down the cloisters

playing the Bagpipes after Final Assembly. Lump in the throat stuff !

My brother, Derek, also attended school from 1957 to 1962. He would have left before sixth form when we moved to Cleethorpes. One of his school mates, Steven Skall, rang him up out of the blue last year on his birthday ( Derek's, that is ! ). How's that for keeping in touch ?

I did revisited my beloved Alma Mater in 1989. Over from Australia doing a nostalgic trip with my parents, who now lived in Southend on Sea.

School was down when we visited but there was some teachers' thing happening. Anyway, I left  Aged Parents to their own devices and proceeded to recapture my schooldays.

By this time, Lincoln School had become Lincoln Christ's Hospital School. But Form 3b classroom was still as I left it and the Fives Court hadn't yet given way to the Pool Buildings.

I indulged in a bit of desultory exploring before discovering a storeroom full of stuff, obviously destined for the tip.Tea chests and bric a brac, thick with dust. I became Howard Carter reincarnate..but where was my King Tut ??????

And then I found it, wedged down the bottom of some crate. A  1959 photograph of Christ's   Hospital Girls School. 30 years down the track, faded and almost cracked in two. Pat Edmonds ( Pete's sister ), Rosemary Sutton (Alf's daughter), Sally Neeve ( I think her brother attended school ) and next to Sally, Penny Waite. Far out. The first love of my life; lived just down the road from us. And there she was.!! ( I wonder where she is now ? Married an Australian guy in 1962, I think )

Anyway, I couldn't just leave her there, could I ? So the photograph was carefully rolled and    secreted on my personage and I waddled back outside.. to find my parents in earnest conversation with a couple of teachers. Hells bells! Sprung as a Tomb Raider. An uncomfortable five minutes passed until I was able to adjust things back in the car.

The photograph still holds pride of place in my nostalgic collection. 'Twas meant to be.

“Alma Mater.” Latin for “'Nourishing Mother”. Wonderful way to describe an institution that gave me such a brilliant start in life. Lincoln School.

Bryan Pheasant. 1954 to 1961

Went on to Nottingham University, from where I graduated in 1965 with a B.Sc. in Civil

Engineering. Thence to Sydney.Australia to take up a position with the NSW Dept of Public Works.

Moved around NSW a bit then back home to work in London before moving to Bermuda for 2 years, where #1 son was born in 1972.  Back to the UK for 6 months before the Land Down Under  beckoned once more.  #2 son born in 1975 in Cairns.Queensland, where I worked in Local Government until 1987.  Mid Life Crisis time.!  Took me 25 years to come to the realisation that maybe 6C would have  been a more suitable forum/formroom for my scholastic talents !!!

Anyhow, after a 10 year second career in the Insurance Industry, I retired to Coolum Beach on  Queensland's Sunshine Coast  in 2000. Happily married to Heather. Walk Poppy, the dog ,down the beach every day.  Life is good and the memories of Lincoln School are sweet.

 

 

 

I was part of a foretaste of State Comprehensive secondary education, when, in 1966, soon after

‘they think it’s all over…it is now!’

……… myself and 20 or so other lucky 15-year old boys were plucked from Secondary Moderns in Lincoln to populate a special class called ‘Form 5’ at Lincoln School. There followed 4 years to remember.

Our form teacher, Mr Wells-Cole, made it clear to us that we were special. Forever eccentric, he pursued the recalcitrant wasps that presumed to invade our class in the hot weather of 1967. A rolled up newspaper was the weapon of choice. He even climbed over our desks so as to effect better attack. We could be in the middle of Dickens or Shakespeare - it didn’t matter - the wasp became the priority.

The memories stack together as if in a hall of mirrors – reflecting each other:

The maniacal ginger-haired rugby teacher (whose name I cannot recall), almost frothing at the mouth with the enjoyment of that game I’ve never been able to stand since.

Our very proper history teacher, Mr Wilson insisting that Charles I’s queen was called Henrietta Mar-EYE-YA, not Mar-EE-YA.

The tall American history teacher who taught us about the American civil war, who also, on hearing of my father’s death, gave me a very caring little talk about death and families and losing your father when you are young.

The Cricket team took a bus to Grantham to play the Grammar School there. I was first change seam bowler. In my first over, the ball slipped out of my hand in the delivery stride and described a hesitant trail down the middle of the pitch. The poor batsman looked horrified as the ball grumbled into the base of the stumps. Mr Kerr was umpiring. The look on his face could have killed me.

My old headmaster from Rosemary, Mr Lister, looked aghast as I, in a porters jacket, held the door of the Eastgate Hotel open for him. ‘Ward…what are you doing here, you are supposed to be at Lincoln School’. ‘Just earning a few bob, sir’.

Once we got to the 6th form, our headmaster, Mr Faull, told us that the school was setting out our cultural education and it was that education that was going to nourish us through our lives. How strange it is that the things I was interested in when I was in the 6th form (Music, Economics, History, Maths, Cricket, Tennis, Theatre) have indeed, just like he predicted, been interests that have kept me going through the peaks and troughs of life’s journey.

He also asked me to become a school prefect in the Upper 6th. I had some bee in my bonnet at the time. I now have no idea what the bee was. I turned him down.

I can also recall this (with gratitude): without the inspiring Mr Gorman, our replacement Maths teacher in the Upper 6th , there is no way I would have got the decent Maths ‘A’ level I managed to get in the end.

And finally, Dick Taverne, the local MP, now Lord Taverne, sent us off on Speech Day with the expectation of big things.

I recently had a visit to the school to see the Garton archive and talk with Peter its devoted custodian. I was treated to a tour of the school : as if I were a VIP. I had not been back on the school premises since July 1970.

The school is of course completely different after the intervening 43 years, as it should be, and the buildings have now taken over a large proportion of what was the main sports field. But in weirdly, echo-chamber-like ways, the place hasn’t changed: many pupils were enjoying their morning break sitting on the stone seats at the iconic cloistered front entrance - like many have before, including me. I found myself looking at the floor by the front door. Embedded in the floor are the same brass door stoppers I could remember. And they still work.

Stephen Ward

Lincoln School 1966-70

Now retired from careers in social work and investment management and living in Taunton Somerset.

  

“Hello all, Alex Mann, class of ’85 (O Levels) and ’87 (A Levels), leaving in 1987. As many may remember, I spent much of my sixth form years avoiding either being taught – or lessons altogether! I noticed Ben Campion’s entry here, and I’m sure he will remember Mr Riley’s desperation at both of us in Physics J.

My dismal “A level” performance (a single “D” in Biology) was thankfully the kick up the rear I needed to sort my life out, and I luckily secured a place at Sunderland studying Applied Biology. I managed a 1st class honours degree which led to a PhD in Clinical Biochemistry at Newcastle University Medical School, and then into industry working for analytical equipment manufacturers.

Twenty years on and I’m now a Sales Leader in a Danaher group company involved in cancer diagnostics, living in rural Wiltshire and the proud father of 3 wonderful children. The eldest of them, Oscar, is at secondary school himself, and it brings back memories of teachers shouting “no running in the cloisters, boys” and dashing around the two playgrounds and fields in unkempt blazers and badly knotted ties. Halcyon days, though I didn’t realise that at the time…

Best regards,

Alex Mann