Trevor Reynolds: WBHS just after WWII

Last updated: 4 August 02

Many thanks for your WBHS website which I have much enjoyed. I was one of the four for whom you kindly inserted a Stop Press item about a reunion in July 2002. We met up and had a great time sparking off memories 53 years on!

I attended WBHS 1944 to 1951, having stayed on in the Sixth whereas the other 3 left in 1949. We were in the A forms. The class, besides us, included Roy Tonkinson (I understand, sadly, hs died very young in his twenties), Edwin Rogers, Gerald Hume, Maurice Bellingham, John Riley, Reggie Banks, Alan Osborne, Ronnie Page, Dennis Smith, Roger Wheeler, Keith Gold, John Lisseman, Peter Enoch, Derek Chester, Roy Knott, Peter Myers, Geoff Churms, Donald Hickman, Brian (?) Pinnock, Geoff Croton, Alan Richards, Dave Price, John Gelder, Alec Conn, Roy Davies, Ron Douglass, Alan Butler, ? Kellett, Jim Kempton, Mike Shaffery. Our 1944/45 class also included an evacuee from Harrow (the place, not the school) named Southwell. He returned home in 1945. In the Sixth I recall others – Lol Churms, George Bradley, Jim Ellis, Dave Pitney.

I still have my school reports (sad, isn`t it !) displaying CSK`s distinctive green ink. On one of these he devotes 2 words (“Really Good”) to my academic record and then adds “I hope next term he will resume chess and try to work this up again. Recently I have had to start all over again with first year boys”. Given his oft-stated contempt for first-years – “You are of no use whatsoever to the school” or similar, this was doubtless particularly galling for him.

Retention of these reports enables me to identify who taught us, as follows :

  • 1944/45 Maths E Powell, French & Art Miss S Duits, English & History C E Taylor, Geog F L G Smith, Physics K Hopkins
  • 1945/46 Latin & French Miss E M Hollins, Eng J N Ball & A D Legge, Hist J F Ede, Art A D Legge, Physics F T Wainwright
  • 1946/47 Maths A B Turner, French S D Mangan, English H A Walter, Chemistry K Hopkins, Latin F Coatham
  • 1947/48 Goeg P R Hatcher, English C E Taylor
  • 1949/50 English J F Ladkin

The above shows changes rather than a full year by year list. I also recall that J Lemaire taught English, G Gill Physics and C Rae took Music.

I am surprised that the famous former pupils section does not mention Geoff Summerfield and Harold Rich, both ahead of me. Geoff Summerfield was a poet and editor of anthologies etc. His obituary in the Daily Telegraph ran to several columns. I now live in Telford and when next in Shrewsbury will see if I can obtain a print for you of any Times obituary from the microfilm copies in the Reference Library. Harold Rich was a well-known Midlands pianist often heard and referred to on the radio. (I shall be delighted to add them to the roll of honour if someone can tell me more about them! Webmaster.)

Trevor Reynolds (known as Charlie for no good reason !)

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