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History and Staff

There are two histories on this Page.   The first was written by an unknown author, undoubtedly a Shene Old Boy and has been supplemented by Dick Strevens.  

 The second is by Michael Shaw BA, a Shene pupil from 1949 to 1958.   Michael's very comprehensive history covers the origins of the School from the earliest days of Richmond  County School and was written in 1961 as a Dissertation for the Teacher's Certificate at the Department of Education, University of Exeter as part of his Post-Graduate Course.   Michael subsequently became Head of Geography at Raynes Park Grammar School.

Michael's anticipation in the final paragraph was unfortunately never to be forthcoming

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EAST SHEEN GRAMMAR SCHOOL FOR BOYS
 

East Sheen Grammar School for Boys was opened by Surrey County Council at the Hertford Avenue site on Tuesday 18th January, 1927.

Mr. H.H. Shephard became the first Headmaster at the age of 33 years. Ninety six pupils took the Common Entrance Examination but six failed to pass. Fifteen boys were transferred from Richmond County Boys School thus the first school roll was 105 pupils. Provision was also to be made for up to twenty County Scholars on free places.

Mr. Shephard’s salary was £47 monthly and he had four full-time staff on £20 to £23 monthly and 3 part time staff on £3 monthly.

It took much persuasion for the Authority to lay out the grounds and this was not done until late in 1928. The South West corner of the area was constantly wet and the clay bottom could not be reached. The dampness was further exacerbated by the fact that the boys’ latrines had no drains and the water used in cleaning them ran into the area.

Names of historic interest in the locality were used for the House system. They were York, Fife, Hood and Temple.

The importance of a good Library was realised right from the start and 40 books were quickly collected (in 1990 this is reported to have reached 12,000).

By the summer of 1928 Mr. Shephard was to decide that he needed clerical assistance and the Governors agreed to the appointment of a Mr Lewis for six mornings a week at a salary of £1 weekly.He only lasted for a few months and was replaced by a string of ladies who also appeared for a very short period of time. By 1933 the salary had risen to £1.50.

Mr. Shephard felt that a Fire Alarm was necessary but although he made many applications the county Authority always turned them down on the ground that it was an unnecessary expense.

By September 1928 the intake had risen to 210 boys. On Wednesday 24th October, 1928 the school played host to HRH the Duchess of York (the recently deceased Queen Mother) who came to lay the foundation stone for the new church in East Sheen Avenue.

In January Mr. J. Terry became part time Physical Training Instructor and attended one day per week being paid £1.60 for the day.

In common with other schools influenza was very prevalent and during January 1929 over 60 boys were away from school – over 25% of the total complement. In July Mr HC Bishop was appointed as a full time groundsman at a salary of £2.50 weekly.

The very first School Certificate results were published in August and the ten pupils who took the examination excelled.The gales of December were to cause havoc to the buildings.Water penetrated the walls of the laboratories and extensive re-pointing was required.

In September, 1930 25 boys were successful and S.H.P. Holt recorded the highest results in Surrey with six Distinctions and a special Credit in oral French. Improved examination successes were to follow in succeeding years.

The site for the Girls School in Hertford Avenue was fenced off in 1930 and this establishment opened in 1931 coincidentally a bad year for Education which saw the passing of the Geddes Act which was to cut all salaries by 10%.

The Boys School numbers had steadily increased, by September 1931 the roll had reached over 300 and an application was lodged for a regrading of the School. This was successful and from 1st April, 1932 it became a Grade III school. The Headmaster’s salary increased to £62 monthly, less 10% Superannuation and full time members of staff were also to receive enhanced conditions.

Mr. Shephard was to coordinate the amalgamation of East Sheen County School for Boys and Richmond County School for Boys in 1939 and was to continue as Head of the combined Richmond and East Sheen County School until his retirement at Christmas 1953.   The school magazine of Spring 1954 reported that Mr. Shephard departed, startling everybody by refusing to allow any ceremony, gift, presentation or speech to be made, claiming that he was carrying away so many intangible memories that he needed nothing else.   The Editors of the magazine deferred to Mr. Shephard's request that they should not include his photograph in the magazine.   He is regarded as an examplar of the prayer which he used regularly at assembly in which he prayed that we should be kept free from 'pride, boasting and forwardness'......

 Mr. Bacon, who had been Assistant Headmaster for many years, took charge for a brief period until the arrival of the new Headmaster, Mr. Rawlings.   'Billy' Bacon's service spanned 24 years and beyond and he is acknowledged as a fine History teacher and aide to Mr. Shephard.

Mr. GP Rawlings assumed Mr. Shephard’s mantle in the summer of 1954.   Mr.Rawlings, who had been an RAF Wing Commander during World War II, had written several books on Mathematics and had previously taught at a Naval Training Station HMS Worcester. He had also represented his Oxford College at Rugby Union.

The School continued to prosper and in 1957 the School was re-named Shene County Grammar School for Boys. That year would also see considerable expansion to the buildings. A new laboratory, prep room and two classrooms were added and the school electricity supply was changed from DC to AC. Further expansions took place in 1961 when a new dining area and kitchen were built at the rear of the Main Hall. The summer holidays of 1964 were to coincide with the passing of Mr. Hyde, one of the original staff of four from the early days of 1927. Mr. Hyde was working at Shene in a part time capacity at the time of his death.

By 1965 the school roll had risen to 383 pupils, 99 of whom were in the Sixth Form and staff members numbered 24.

1966 was to see the retirement of Mr. Burridge, the Deputy Head who had also served since 1927.

Further building works were to be made in 1967 – the building of a new gymnasium.

Academically the School was a great success but the Borough reorganisation plan of 1973 was to see the demise of the Grammar School and the beginning of the Shene Sixth Form College. Mr. Rawlings became a Mathematics Advisor for the Borough and the new Principal of the college was Mr. Eric Healey supported by Mr. R. Friggens, ex Deputy Head of the Boys School, Mrs. K. Kulisa, ex Headmistress of the Richmond Girls Grammar School and Mr. R. Smith, an out-Borough appointment. A considerable amount of new building and refurbishment to the School buildings was undertaken and a new Technical Block provided.

Shene Grammar School took in its final intake of pupils in September, 1972 and in a subsequent Borough reorganisation in 1977 the sixth form was merged with another Sixth Form College, Thames Valley and the Technical College at Twickenham to form one large Tertiary College on the Technical college site off the Great Chertsey Road The Shene site became the Shene Comprehensive School.

The site is now occupied by Shene International School as a Centre of Excellence for Languages, under the control of Richmond-upon-Thames Council.

 

TEACHING AND ADMINISTRATIVE STAFF AT SHENE DURING THE PERIOD COVERED BY THIS WEBSITE

Headmasters:  HH Shephard MA (Oxon), GP Rawlings OBE, MA (Oxon)

Deputy Heads:  S Bacon BA (Oxon), RH Burridge BSc (London),

School Secretaries:  Mrs. M Dancer, Mrs B Jones, Assistant: Mrs J Cutler 

Laboratory Supervisor:  A Temple

Caretakers:  Mr Fellowes, Mr Richards ('Butch') Assistant:  Mr Oliver ('Moses')

Masters:  FR Abbatt (Physics), Rev. E Aethwy-Jones BA (Liverpool) (Religious Education),  JOP Alexander BSc (Physics), E Allwright (Mathematics), MC Ash BA (French and German), S. Bacon BA (Oxon) (History), LH Baggarley LRAM, FRCO (Music),  AW Ball (Maths), LGH Barfield (Maths), B Basuyau (French), AG Beresford (English), WG Burley BA (Oxon) (Biology), Don Black BSc (Chemistry), A Blacklidge (Physical Education), J Bond (Maths),  MF Brettell (Science),  RL Brigden MA (Cantab) (Latin and English Language/Literature (?)), WG Bryant MA (Cantab) (English), Mr Bryant later took Holy Orders), R Bullard (Handicraft),  WJ Burley BA (Oxon) Biology (see Mr Burley's biography which follows this section), RHG Burridge BSc (London), (Mathematics), KJD Burrows FRCL, LRAM (Music),  Mrs Burrows (Music), EH Burton BA (History and Games), DM Carter BSc, ANZIC, RN. Chapman BSc, ARCS (Biology), TG Charles BSc (Maths), DG Chisman BSc (London), ARIC (Chemistry), PL Cook BSc (Chemistry),  Dr GJ Copley Ph D (English), FCH Cox BA (German), W Cox (?),  FL Culver (Religious Instruction),  Mr Davis (Maths), E Davies Dip CC (PE and Games), RE Dowsett BSc (Chemistry), Fraulein ER Ehleben (German), PR Evans (Physical Education and Games), JL Fairhurst ARCA (Art), CW Falkner (Science), RN Fash Dip CC (Physical Education and Games), Mlle D Fenoglio (French), Michael Ford (Chemistry), JBG Free (Physics),  RW Friggens (BSc (London) Physics), Dr WH Gardner (English).......see Ralph Stone's contribution on the 1941 intake page,   GK Gilson BSc (London) (Science), Mrs HP Godfrey BSc Econ (Economics), HC Goodbourn BSc (London) (Geography), JK Gould (Religious Instruction), BE Green BSc (Chemistry), TE Green MA, BSc (Oxon) (Chemistry), Mrs M Grice BSc (Biology), P Grice BA (Bristol) (German and French), MJ Grinter BA (English), Mrs A Hancock (English), C Hannan (Mathematics and Technical Drawing), Mr Harrison (English Language/Literature),Mr. Harris,  Rev AC Heath MA (Oxon) (Maths).......The Rev Heath was also the Rector of Barnes, Mrs J Hickman (French), W Hill (Economics and Geography), EL Hillman  BA (London) (English), Kate Holroyd (Maths), JH Hyde BA (London) (French), K Jones (English), BB Kelham (Chemistry), Major JW Kirkby (English, German also OC, Army Cadets), RT MacLaren BA (London) (French), AIF Malcolm MA (Cantab) (French and Spanish), PA Malik (Chemistry),  DB Mercer BSc (Physics),  Mr. Morgan (English, Physical Education), G Morrell (Mathematics), Fraulein G Neufelder (German), D Nicholls Dip LC, ACP (Physical Education and Mathematics),  GM Peel BA (Leeds) LTCL (English),  Mr G Rees (English and History), , Mr Ryder (Physics), MGAD Scott  BSc (London) (Biology),  RR Shackell M. Coll. H (Woodwork, Technical Drawing, Mathematics), D Sharpling BSc (Physics and Games), V Slee (Technical Drawing and Handicraft), Mr. Smethurst LTCL (Music), GMS Smith LRAM, LTCL, ARCO (Music), AG Stephens BA (Geography, Physical Education),  Mrs E Stephens BA (English), J Stickells BSc (London) (Mathematics and Physical Education), Physical Education), Mr Stone (Maths), Mrs EM Symons BA (English), GT Teboul (French),  A Temple (Laboratory Supervisor, AE Terry BA (London) (History, Sport), R Theobald, Rev DH Thomas MA, PhD (Religious Education)................Rev Thomas was also Minister of East Sheen Congregational Church, Mrs IM Thomas BSc (Mathematics and Geography), RJH Tiffin BSc (Physics), KO Turner BSc(Science), JL Vandenheste (French), K Wever (German), MJ Webb BA (History), Fraulein W Webber (German),  B Weeden BA (English), GHW White MA (Oxon) (English), M White (Games), P Winter BSc Econ. (Economics), Mr Woolf (Chemistry),  LC Wright BA (Geography, Economics), RP Woods (Handicrafts), W Wookey BA (English), Miss D Wryde ( French)

 

EDITORS NOTE: PHOTOGRAPHS CAN BE SEEN AT THE PHOTO GALLERY UNDER 'SHENE STAFF'

 

 

 

A brief biography of Mr. Burley by Alan Burley who supplied the detailed information to WJ Burley.com which has a considerable fund of informaton not reproduced here.

1914 August 1st, born in Falmouth, at home in 3, Lister Place (now called New Windsor Terrace). Father William John Rule Burley (b.Jan 14th 1866 in Redruth, d.1935); Mother Annie Curnow (b. 15th June 1870, d. 1st Jan 1956); 5 older sisters.

1921 Attended Trevethan Board School, Harbour Terrace at age 6 1/2.

1923 Attended Wellington Terrace School. A report for the half year ending March 31st 1926 gives the school name as Wellington Terrace Senior Boys' School, head teacher W D Squire. He was 3rd in a class of 47.

1926 Missed the Grammar school entrance exam because of illness. Attended Truro Central Technical Schools till aged 16 1/2, going up on the train each day. The school buildings now house the County Library in Truro.

1928 Move to No.1, Kimberley Place, opposite the Catholic Church.

1930/31 Moved to 107 Killigrew Road, Falmouth.

1931 Articled pupil in gas engineering to Truro Gas Company Ltd. This cost £30 per year, which the family could not afford, and he was awarded the Keam Scholarship by Cornwall County Council, arranged by the headmaster of his school. He studied Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics obtaining City and Guilds or UEI qualifications in each subject, plus the gas engineering qualification of the Institution of Gas Engineers.

1932 Met Muriel Wolsey at the Wesleyan Chapel in Falmouth.

1936 Appointed Technical Assistant, Truro Gas Co.

1938 Appointed Assistant Manager, Truro Gas Co.

1938 April 10th Married Muriel Wolsey at Penwerris Church in Falmouth. Honeymoon - 6 days at Seaway House, Seaway Road, Paignton. They then lived at 'Mahjongg', Tresawls Avenue, Highertown, Truro.

1940 Appointed Manager Okehampton Gas Co. Ltd. Lived at The Corner House, 1 Leeholes Avenue, Okehampton, a house supplied by the Gas Co. Son, Alan John, born Exeter hospital 13th June. Because he was in a 'reserved' occupation he was not called up to serve in the army, but served as a sergeant in the Home Guard.

1941 Elected Associate Member of Institution of British Engineers

1943 Son, Nigel Phillip, born at Okehampton hospital 4th August.

1944 Appointed Manager & Secretary of Crewkerne Gas and Coke Co. Ltd. at a salary of £400 p.a. plus house and fuel. Address : 129, South Street, Crewkerne. His departure and leaving presentation were reported on p.3 of the County Mail dated May 8th 1946 under 'presentation to Mr W J Burley'.

1946 Appointed Manager and Secretary of Camborne Gas Co.Ltd, with a showroom and office at 29, Trelowarren St., and the gas works at Tuckingmill, at a salary of £500 p.a. plus house and fuel. Started in May. Lived initially in lodgings at 32 Edward St, Tuckingmill, Camborne before moving to the manager's house next to the gas works in Tuckingmill, adjacent to Tolgarrick Road. The house was later in the news (front page with pictures) when there was a murder there - West Briton December 5th 1974.

1946 Started attending natural history evening classes given by Dr Frank Turk at the W.E.A.

1948 December, bought Dromona, Reskadinnick near Camborne, close to where Frank and Stella Turk lived : they had become close friends. The house was bought for £1000 in cash from Frank Moseley who lived there alone. John and Muriel borrowed the money from sisters Janie and Edith (Robin). The house was in a poor state and Frank and Stella helped with the decoration. The foreman at the gas works, Sandy - moved in to the manager's house in Tuckingmill.

1948-50 Under Frank's guidance took an increasing interest in zoology, particularly entomology and made a study of the insect life on and around the tin stream (Red River) of Reskadinnick, which is now a conservation area.

1950 Obtained a place at Balliol College, Oxford to study for a degree in zoology, based on Frank's recommendation and an interview. Awarded a state scholarship to pay fees, board and lodging and to support the family at Dromona. Resigned his post with the gas company with effect from 30th September, losing his pension rights by doing so.

1950-53 Completed his undergraduate course, living in the College during term time and returning to Dromona during vacations. During one vacation he took a job with the Inland Revenue office in Redruth. His tutor was Amyan Macfadyen with whom he became friendly and maintained contact after leaving the University. He obtained a second class honours degree in zoology.

1953 Offered the job of head of the biology department at Richmond & East Sheen County Grammar School for boys where he started in September at a salary of £721 p.a. He had spent the last few days of the previous (summer) term at Tiffins School in Kingston but since teaching had stopped by this time he was not able to do much. For the first two terms he lived in lodgings with a Mrs Povey in East Sheen, whilst the rest of the family stayed in Cornwall arranging the sale of Dromona. Alan, the elder son joined him at the school and in the lodgings for the second half of the Spring term in1954.

1954 Muriel sold Dromona to Mrs Black through an advert in the Observer which mentioned its 'atrocious approach' : she was a fan of Roy Brooks' famous adverts in that paper. Proceeds after legal expenses were £1133 16/6d and sale completed on 12th April. At the same time the house at 78 Manor Road, Richmond was bought for £2000 from Mr G K Taylor with the help of a mortgage.

1955 Applied for the post of head of biology at Newquay Grammar School for boys and started there in September under Mr G S Parker, head-master, who was replaced by Mr Joe Gerber about a year later. The Richmond House was sold to Stanley Tyler for £2225 and the family moved to Cornwall at the end of the summer term renting a bungalow called St Christopher's at Crantock.

1956 After a long search they bought St Patrick's, Holywell for £1800 where they (John and Muriel) lived for the rest of their lives.

1955-74 John remained as head of the biology department until he retired, taking on the job of careers master as well for most of that time. When the Grammar schools were closed he moved with the staff and pupils to the Comprehensive school at Tretherras., where Muriel was the headmaster's (Mr Gerber) secretary.

1966 First book published by Victor Gollancz, A Taste of Power featuring amateur detective Dr Henry Pym and murder in a school.

1968 Three Toed Pussy published by Victor Gollancz, the first of 22 books featuring Superintendent Wycliffe .

1969 Death in Willow Pattern published, the second book featuring Henry Pym.

1970 To Kill a Cat published, the second book featuring Charles Wycliffe.

1971 Guilt Edged published, the third Wycliffe book.

1973 Death in a Salubrious Place published, the fourth Wycliffe book.

1974 John Burley retired at age 60.  

1975 Death in Stanley Street published, the fifth Wycliffe book.

1975 Wycliffe and the Pea-Green Boat published .  

1976 Wycliffe and the Schoolgirls published .

1977 The Schoolmaster published .

1978 The 6th Day , a work of science fiction, published.

1978 Wycliffe and the Scapegoat published.

1979 Charles and Elizabeth published .

1980 Wycliffe in Paul's Court published.

1981 The House of Care published.

1982 Wycliffe's Wild Goose Chase published.

1983 Wycliffe and the Beales published.  

1985 Wycliffe and the Four Jacks published.  

1986 Wycliffe and the Quiet Virgin published.  

1982 Wycliffe's Wild Goose Chase published.

1983 Wycliffe and the Beales published.

1985 Wycliffe and the Four Jacks published.

1986 Wycliffe and the Quiet Virgin published.

1987 Wycliffe and the Winsor Blue published.

1988 Wycliffe and the Tangled Web published.

1990 Wycliffe and the Cycle of Death published.

1991 Wycliffe and the Dead Flautist published.

1992 Wycliffe and the Last Rites published.

1993 Wycliffe and the Cycle of Death pilot on HTV.

1994 Six Wycliffe episodes broadcast on ITV (based on published books).

1994 Wycliffe and the Dunes Mystery published.

1995 Eight Wycliffe episodes broadcast on ITV.

1995 Wycliffe and the House of Fear published.

1996 Eight Wycliffe episodes broadcast on ITV.

1997 Wycliffe and the Redhead published.

1997 Nine Wycliffe episodes broadcast on ITV (including a Christmas special).

1998 Six Wycliffe episodes broadcast on ITV.

2000 Wycliffe and the Guild of Nine published.

2002 John Burley died while working on Wycliffe's Last Lap which would have been the 23rd novel featuring Charles Wycliffe.

 

 

 
   

 

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SHENE COUNTY SCHOOL FOR BOYS

 

A County Grammar School serving mainly the Boroughs of Richmond and Barnes in the County of Surrey.

 

INTRODUCTION 

In 1957, Richmond and East Sheen County Grammar School for Boys became known simply as Shene County School for Boys in official circles.

The name ‘Shene’ was given to the first settlement of present day Richmond in Anglo-Saxon times to explain the beauties of the Thames and the countryside around the village.

Richmond is a town, rich in historical detail and the first royal connection with early Shene was a manor house erected by Henry I.    The growth of the Royal Manor House at Shene into one of the principal royal palaces naturally in turn encouraged the growth of a small town, and by the close of the Tudor period, there was quite a flourishing settlement around the Palace and The Green. The advent of royalty to Shene must be explained: firstly, the village was sufficiently near to London by water, yet sufficiently far away to make it a most desirable and secluded summer residence. Situated within the loop of the first major southern bend in the Thames and away from both the Bath and Portsmouth Roads, Shene was in a unique position to suit the needs of the sovereign - approximately eleven miles from Westminster.

King Henry VII changed the name of his favourite residence to Richmond after his Dukedom in Yorkshire, and thus the adoption of the name ‘Shene’ to the present Grammar School invokes the rich historical past of this town in Surrey. The Tudor period marked a period of expansion and prosperity in Richmond. With the Royal Court centred here for most of the period, many titled people, together with courtiers and servants, made their homes in the village or nearby: consequently from Tudor times until the advent of the railway in 1846 the population of the village was predominantly upper class.

Under the Commonwealth rule of Oliver Cromwell, Richmondsuffered enormously but the Hanoverians and Queen Victoria’s reign brought happy days once again.  George III lived for much of his life in Richmond and Kew to the benefit of both places and later in the nineteenth century, the Borough of Richmond was graced by the presence and hospitality of the Duke and Duchess of Teck.

Richmondand East Sheen County (Grammar) School is itself a product of the past:  the name dates from 1939 when theEastSheenCountySchool for Boys, founded in 1927, was amalgamated with the much olderRichmondCountySchool, founded in 1896. The amalgamated school was housed in the buildings of the East Sheen school but much of this thesis is concerned with the Richmond School, whose Diamond Jubilee was celebrated in 1956.

 

CHAPTER 1

RICHMOND COUNTY SCHOOL — THE BEGINNING, 1896-1912

With the advent of the railway toRichmondin 1846 the proportion of royalty and titled people in the town began to decline as the town increased rapidly in population. The new residents were mainly those of the middle classes to whomRichmondhad that royal attraction and who thought it only right and proper that they should settle in such a town. The population rose from 7,760 in 1841 to 15,113 in 1871 and to 25,577 in 1901.

Education was an important factor in the lives of the new residents and in 1867, Hiscoke wrote ‘there are schools of’every degree’, National, Parochial, Infant, District andSundaySchools, academies for young gentlemen and genteel seminaries for their sisters’ — such was the need for education that many of these private schools sprang up in the neighbourhood. However, there was a deficiency in this system, for there was no reasonable secondary education for miles around except for those who could afford private tuition or send their children many miles to school.

General primary education was in the hands of the churches and after this education, no opportunities were open to the pupil for further education. Boys from elementary schools, who gained scholarships, were obliged to hold them atKingstonwhere school accommodation was already severely taxed by the numbers in attendance. If a straight line was drawn from Wandsworth toKingston, an area of about fifteen square miles would be included between this line and theThames, and in this district, containing aSurreypopulation of 150,000, there was not a single public secondary school. Parents with limited means in the most populous areas of Surrey, namely Sutton, Wimbledon and Richmond, anxious to do the best for their boys, yet unable to pay rail fares in addition to school fees, were obliged to be content to give them an education either strictly elementary or Art, Manual Work and Commercial Subjects during the day for about 350 to 400 scholars, and to serve all the purposes of a Polytechnic including women’s classes in the evening. The school was to be one of a series of new Technical Buildings erected or being erected by the County Council in the seven principal towns of the County.’

The school was completed in two stages: the first stage, the major part of the school in 1896, and the second stage, the new south wing in 1901.  In 1895, the cost of the school was estimated at £6,467 but with the actual completion in 1901, the cost amounted to £l4,457

The cost of the school can be analysed as follows:

1)         Surrey County Council

Purchase of site                                                1,577

First origina1 contribution                                  4,000

Stage Grant towards fencing,fitting etc.              2,853

Grant towards new south wing                          2,650

Amount repaid to Science and Arts Dept.            127                                       11,207

2)         Richmond Borough Council

Contribution to original building                         1,250

Contribution to new wing                                  1,250                                         2,500

3)         Private Subscription                                250                                            250

4)         Science and Arts Department,Kensington

Building grant less £127 repaid

by S.C.C.                                                           500                                            500

 

TOTAL COST                                                                                              £14,457

 

The County Council grants were always on condition that the Town Council paid their share, but the latter assembly would never have finally given the money if it had not been for the continual prompting and untiring efforts ofGeorgeCave. The Town Council was generally apathetic to the whole scheme. This can be explained as theRichmondgentry saw no reason for the school to be built because all the upper classes and titled people could afford to send their children to the innumerable private schools scattered throughout the county: the building of the school would not be to their benefit. By 1901, the school had proved its worth by the academic standard it had set itself: many upper class children were thus transferred to the local grammar school in preference to the usually inferior private schools. Support for the new extension south wing was thus strong in contrast, and the council gave the County Council its whole hearted support. A second drawback to the new school was the need to raise £250 by local contributions as laid down by the County Council towards alterations needed in the plan of theArtRoom. At the time of opening in 1896, only £160 of this sum had been raised. The people who could afford to subscribe to the fund were those same people who were apathetic to the idea of a grammar school, and thus it was only natural to find such a poor public response. The buildings opened in 1896 were built by J.W. Brooking, the architect being F.W. Fryer ofChurch Road,Richmond.

Surrey County Council also undertook to endow the school with grants in aid of Science, Modern Language and Shorthand teaching, Apparatus and Scholarships to an amount close upon £500 a year. Fifteen free scholarships were provided for boys attending elementary schools inRichmondand ten for boys outsideRichmond.

TheRichmondCountySchooland Technical Institute was opened on22nd July 1896by the Lord Lieutenant ofSurrey, Lord Middleton. He outlined, at the opening, the events leading to the erection of the school and emphasised the grammar school part of the scheme. He stressed the need for educated technicians and men of commerce in an age of competition in world trade whenFranceandGermanywere becoming dangerous rivals.

Th. fees charged at the School were nominal and were stabilised soon after the opening of the school as follows:

All Surreyboys and nearby Middlesex boys :                £6 a year

Boys from further away:                                              £10 a year

An entrance fee of £1 was payable on admission to the school and £1.10.0d. payable per year for stationery, apparatus and equipment, chemical and physical laboratories, an Art school, carpentry, carving and plumbing rooms were all included in the new building.

The first Chairman of the Governors,GeorgeCave, later Lord Chancellor, said at the opening that the programme of subjects was a comprehensive one and it supplied all that boys up to 15/16 were likely to want. It appears that science was to be made the prominent subject at the school as considerable attention was given to fitting out the laboratories. The following subjects were available to pupils throughout the school:

Religious instruction, English grammar, composition and literature, English history and geography, mathematics, French and German, chemistry, physics and mechanics, drawing, shorthand and book keeping, vocal music, drill and manual training and the use of tools. Latin could be taken as an optional subject, alternative to shorthand and geography. It can be clearly seen that there was a great technical bias in the curriculum, mainly to allow for the provision of the school under the aforementioned Act and not for any special technical skills needed in the neighbourhood.

Nine years later in 1905, the prospectus of the school gave the following subjects as taught: 

Religious knowledge, English, grammar, composition and literature, geography and English history, mathematics, French and German, Latin, chemistry, physics and mechanics, drawing, shorthand and commercial subjects, vocal music, drill and manual training and the use of tools. Latin has here been included as a major subject, book-keeping has disappeared and the study of only English History is significant of the time. The German taught was mainly in the matriculation form and was most probably for scientific purposes. There is a gradual shift towards the basic grammar school curriculum and away from the technical bias of the first few years. As a dormitory suburban area with no industries before the First World War, it was quite natural for this process to develop and reach its completion in the early 1920’s.

The first Headmaster was Mr A.E. Buckhurst M.A. (Oxon), a scholar in science and mathematics: his staff to start with was small, and in 1900 consisted of five assistant masters and three visiting masters. The number of pupils rose rapidly and this occasioned the building of the new south wing. The plans were prepared by Mr G. Hamlin Fox and the wing opened in 1901. Between 1900 and 1914 the numbers in the school were fairly constant around 200. In 1900, 75% of the boys were resident in the Borough of Richmond, 14% lived in the rest ofSurreyand 11% came from Middlesex. The completed school, however, could have catered for 300 boys should the need have arisen.

A governing body was constituted consisting of twenty one persons and approved by Surrey County Council. It consisted of four ex-officio governors — the Chairman and Vice-Chairman of Surrey County Council, the Mayor and Vicar of Richmond; and seventeen Representative Governors — eight appointed by S.C.C., five by Richmond Town Council and one each by City and Guilds of London Institute, Kings College, University College and the Incorporated Association of Headmasters. The first chairman in 1896 wasGeorgeCavewho was the guiding light in the foundation of the school. 

As a result of the 1902 Education Act, Surrey County Council agreed that Richmond Borough Education Committee should exercise and carry out the powers of the Governors as above. This Act legalised the founding of Grammar Schools by the County from public funds.

The examinations taken by the school’s scholars were those set by theUniversityofLondonand remain so to the present day. The first major school successes were quick in fruition: H,A, Timpany gained the school’s first County Major Scholarship for University study in 1898, two more were added in 1899, one in 1900 and another in 1901.

These successes established the school as one of high academic achievement and, thus consolidated, the school turned to initiating more leisurely pursuits. The first Athletic sports were held in Richmond Athletic Ground in 1903, a meeting marked by the many handicap races — obviously it was not right for the fastest boy to win the laurels!  The same year, the swimming sports were started and again, handicapping was a common feature.

School Speech Days were a feature from the very first year, but in 1912 dramatics were first introduced to give an added interest to the occasion. The first school society recorded was founded in 1912, namely the Debating Society, and this was restricted to boys in theUpperSchool.

OnFebruary 7th 1911King Manuel ofPortugalvisited the school accompanied by the Mayor of Richmond, A1derman C.B. Edgar. The Cadet Corps of the school formed a guard of honour and after the visit, the school had the rest of the day as a holiday. The King toured the school buildings under the guidance of Mr Buckhurst and Mr Palmer, the second master.

Unfortunately for the school, Mr Buckhurst died suddenly in 1912 at the age of 48.  As a remembrance to the first headmaster, the old boys of the school subscribed to a fund in order to present a prize as a memorial to Mr Buckhurst at each Speech Day; this became known as the Buckhurst Memorial Prize and is still given for outstanding work at Mr Buckhurst’s main subject, mathematics.

Later in 1912, the new headmaster, Mr T.W. Beasley, M.A. (Oxon), a scholar in classics and modern languages, came to the school and thus ended the first phase in the history of the school.

Mr Buckhurst’s sixteen years as headmaster did much to mark theRichmondschool as one of high academic achievement, a reputation the school and its successors were to enjoy throughout its history. School clubs and societies were hardly in existence by 1912 and the ‘house system’ was not in operation: however these points are purely subsidiary to the basic achievement of Mr Buckhurst: it remained for Mr Beasley and his staff to consolidate this initial start and to broaden the school activities beyond academic work.

 

CHAPTER 2

RICHMOND COUNTY SCHOOL THE CONSOLIDATION 1912-1939

Mr Beasley remained headmaster from 1912 until the amalgamation withEastSheenCountySchoolin 1939, in which year he also retired. It is the policy of the author in this span of twenty seven years to take each aspect of school life as a coherent whole throughout the period.

References must first be made to the cadet corps which was founded on25th June 1900by Capt. A.E. Buckhurst MA., who had as his Second-in-Command Lieutenant T. Batcheldor B.A., the initial complement was forty boys and this was probably the first of such organisations inSurrey. In 1913 the Corps became seventy strong; it held its own camps and held many rifle-shooting records and cups. The Drill Instructor to the Corps for many years since its foundation was Sergeant-Instructor H.C. Banks. In the November edition, 1913, of the School Magazine, reference is made to life aboard H.M.S. Worcester, theThamesNauticalTrainingCollegemoored off Greenhithe inKent. Some of the cadets attended courses at the college whose purpose was that of educating youths who intended to become officers in the Mercantile Marine. The First World War stimulated recruitment and the Cadet Corps numbers soared to 90: many boys won commissions with the East Surrey Regiment and others during the war, and at its close, the complement returned to a norm between forty and fifty. In 1931, the Cadet Corps was disbanded with the withdrawal of official recognition, but it had served a very useful purpose in its early years to instil a sense of responsibility and discipline into the school.

Two main aspects stand out during Mr Beasley’s tenure of office as headmaster: firstly the great rise in school activities and societies, and secondly the rise of the House System as an inherent part of the school in all functions.

The most important school activity after the advent of Mr Beasley was undoubtedly the foundation of the school magazine, the first issue of which was dated 1913. The Debating Society flourished since its inaugural meeting in 1912: it is of interest to note that in 1916 the house passed a motion ‘that English Railways be nationalised’.

In 1919, physical jerks were initiated by the Headmaster, taking place before school, half-an-hour before prayers: doubtless, it may be added, the whole idea was abandoned after one term.

Another stalwart society, the Chess Club, was founded in 1920 at the instigation of Mr Jeffs. This club expanded considerably and in the 1930’s took part in tournaments and the local chess league: the results were always of the highest standard and undoubtedly increased the powers of concentration of club members.

In 1920 tennis matches were started withRichmondCountySchoolfor Girls, and later in the same decade swimming matches were started but during the 1930’s these competitive games faded away.

The 1920’s and 1930’s marked a great upsurge in out-of –school activities; a Rowing Club was formed in 1922, Stamp Club 1924, Photographic Club 1926, Art Club 1930, Rifle Club 1931 and Boat Club 1931. The Rifle Club was formed to accommodate the former Cadets, whose Corps was disbanded in that year. It is of interest to note that a School Scout Troup was also formed in 1931 and the Group became known as the 23rdRichmond. The Boat Club was formed to provide occupation for members of theUpperSchoolto whom football and cricket did not appeal. The School Tuck Shop may also be included in this section as it was opened in 1926.

With the arrival of Mr Beasley, boys were distributed into four houses .. North, South, East and West - ofRichmond, one presumes — with house Captains and House Prefects. In sport, the school followed the traditions of the country at large and thus sporting interest was mainly directed towards cricket and football, our two national sports. Matches were soon arranged with other schools in the area and this increased the sporting standard of the choo1. In 1912, House Championships took place in cricket, football and athletics, and in 191k, the swimming sports were organised on the same basis. A late addition to the sporting activities, of the school, boxing, was also competed for as a house championship in 1933 but this was short-lived.

In 1916, the school magazine noted that the house element was growing. At the beginning of the term, masters were appointed to houses and the Cadet Corps divided into house sections. It was hoped that these arrangements would make the boys keener and also prouder of their houses. A gymnastics competition was started in 1916 on an individual as well as house basis whilst a cross country championship is mentioned in 1924 but there seems to be no system by which the champion house of the school year is proclaimed.

In 1926 House matches in football were played on a league basis as opposed to a knock-out competition and this was extended to cricket in 1928. Democracy, however, was on the wane in 1929, when it was decided that all school captains should not be elected by the masses at the beginning of term. The magazine states.. ‘the need for such a reform has been evident for some time’.

There were no playing fields belonging to the school:  cricket and football matches took place in the Old Deer Park and the athletic sports at Richmond Athletic Ground. Later in the 1930’s the school at last obtained extensive playing fields at Pesthouse Common,Richmond, in Queen’s Road.

The staff did not increase greatly during this period. In 1912, the headmaster had nine assistant masters and two visiting masters, whilst in 1939, thirteen assistant masters were employed.  The school roll, too, did not vary considerably from Mr Buckhurst’s period; except for a bulge after the war when numbers rose to 280, the school roll was fairly constant around 220. Continuously throughout its existence,RichmondCountySchoolremained a two-stream school.

The curriculum during the period 1912-1939 changed greatly to accommodate itself to the fierce competition for scholarships with other secondary schools. The main aim of every grammar school became the winning of scholarships and thus the Richmondschool had no further need to follow any technical course. The early 1920’s marked the introduction of the mixed arts and science course of the standard grammar school.  In 1919, Modern European History took its place together with English History in the curriculum. Shorthand was dropped from the school course and relegated to the Technical Institute.

The examinations set by theUniversityofLondonfor secondary schools and the County requirements for the award of major scholarships had great effects upon the matriculation and post-matriculation forms atRichmondCountySchool. Before 1918, the County required a pass in the senior school Examination of theUniversityofLondonof not more than six subjects. From 1918 until 1923, the awards were granted on a special examination taken after a year’s work following matriculation in the General School Examination: this tended to lengthen the life of a schoolboy by one year. It is interesting to note that no scholarships were won by the school in this period because firstly the school must have found it difficult to adapt itself to the new arrangements, and secondly the scholarships were opened to the son of any Surrey ratepayer without regard to school: but in 1924, the County requirements changed again, stating that awards would be granted on results in the Higher School Examination which took place generally two years after matriculation in the General School Examination. This requirement led to the foundation of the two year sixth form course as we know it today, and, as it stated that the award would be granted on ‘main subjects in a selected group’, the appropriate designations ‘Arts’ and ‘Science’ were used to distinguish between the two groups in the Sixth Form. The matriculation examination was thus in l924 commenced in the fifth year, and in 1927, the new arrangements bore fruit when the school gained its first County Major Scholarship since 1915.

Before l924 the Sixth Form was divided into post matriculation and future matriculation sections, The former were divided into Arts and Science students known as VIA and they worked for the special examination mentioned above. The latter were in a form known as VIB and in 1920 were ten in number, whilst VIA had seven students. In 1923 twenty boys were in VIB working for their matriculation, and of these, fifteen matriculated and twenty reached General School Standard.

Some explanation of matriculation is perhaps needed:  from the General School Examination three varieties of certificate could be awarded. Firstly, candidates reaching a pass standard in at least six subjects were awarded their General School Certificate. Secondly, candidates who reached a higher standard ‘CREDIT’ in five of these subjects were awarded the Matriculation Certificate and this excluded them from matriculation examinations for entrance to theUniversity ofLondon. Thirdly, candidates who passed the General Schoo1 Certificate at a still higher ‘DISTINCTION’ standard in at least three subjects were given the Honours General Certificate.

 

It is interesting to dissect a curriculum in the late 1920’s leading to matriculation in the fifth form and in some cases the sixth form as well :

 

 

YEAR 2

YEAR 3

YEAR 4

YEAR 5

ENGLISH

6

4

4

5

MATHS

6

6

6

6

FRENCH

4

4

4

6

HISTORY

2

2

3

3

GEOGRAPHY

2

2

2

3

SCRIPTURE

1

1

1

1

PHYSICS

-

SCIENCE 4

3

4

CHEMISTRY

-

 

3

2

WOODWORK

4

2

2

-

DRAWING

5

2

ALTERNATIVE WITH LATIN 6

ALTERNATIVE WITH LATIN 5

LATIN

-

4

 

 

SINGING

1

1

1

-

GYM.

1

1

1

1

PREP.

4

3

-

-

 

The choice between Drawing and Latin was not a free choice: any boy showing promise in Latin in the third form was made to take it in the fourth year. The General School Certificate in this period was taken by the School in the following subjects:

English, mathematics, French, geography, history, chemistry, mechanics (physics), magnetism and electricity (physics), Latin and Drawing, The technical subjects were fast disappearing from importance. The withdrawal of shorthand has already been noted; woodwork has, in the 1920’s, been relegated as a junior school subject whilst drawing remains in the Fifth Form as a poor option for those unable to comprehend Latin.

Finally in this section, it is necessary to outline the general historical background of Mr Beasley’s headship. The First World War had a great effect upon the school as many masters and Old Boys joined up with their colours. 298 Old Boys and masters were with the colours during the war and of this number, fifty were officers. The Roll of Honour bears witness to the fact that eighty lost their lives. The effect of the war and return to peace together with the changes in the examinations led to a reappraisal of the whole grammar school curriculum and syllabus and in turn, this paved the way to future academic success from 1927, without a break to the present day.

In 1921 the Old Boys’ Association was set up and their first annual dinner was held in 1924.

An annual general knowledge paper seems to have been the tradition of the school, but in 1924 the paper was scrapped, as was a new prize presented at Speech Day for elocution.

Discipline was generally administered by the staff but a detention system was also in operation. However, with the arrival of Mr Retter in 1925, he and Mr Boulton succeeded in changing the system into the ‘Credit and Debit System’. This system abolished detentions and gave forms extra half days holidays if they had amassed a certain number of credits over a given period. As Mr Retter formerly lived inExeter, no doubt he copied the old established credit and debit system of Eels’s School,Exeter.

In the same year, the school was graced by the presence of the Lord Chancellor,LordCave, at Speech Day and he recalled his efforts in accomplishing the foundation of the school.

In 1926, Saturday morning school was abandoned for a term during the coal strike: this reduced the number of days the heating system had to be used. The school hours since the foundation had been little changed when the school amalgamated with East Sheen in 1939. Morning school was from9 amuntil12.30 pmwhilst afternoon school was from2 p.m.until4.30 pmThere was school on Saturday morning but Wednesday afternoon was generally a games afternoon.

There was much heart-rending with the final decision to amalgamate the two schools of Richmondand East Sheen. The decision to build a new secondary school at Barnes was referred to by Mr Beasley at Speech Day in 1925 when he outlined the difficulties of the school at Richmond— ‘The new BarnesSchoolwould relieve the school of any difficulty in finding accommodation.   More serious problems are those arising from our position on the main artery of traffic’. Since there had been an enormous increase in motor traffic, the expenditure of effort required in teaching had increased beyond all possible provision in the school. At Speech Day in 1926,LordCave said, ‘every institution which is a success, grows and becomes too big for its shoes, and that has happened toRichmondCountySchool for Boys and the time has come to consider the provision of a better building.’ The accommodation atRichmond became more and more unsuitable for grammar work, until it was decided in 1939 to amalgamate theRichmond and East Sheen County Schoo1s and to house the augmented school in the two school buildings at East Sheen. There was an urgent need to resite the new school in 1926 and the further events leading to the amalgamation will be discussed in full in the next chapter.

Mr Beasley conveniently retired in 1939 and Mr Harries ofRichmondwas appointed second master to Mr Shephard of East Sheen. In its last issue, the Richmond School Magazine suggested that the house systems of both schools should be abolished and new houses instituted; but this was not to be so: it mentioned the glittering array of cups caused by the pooling of resources and wished the new school, masters and pupils a very successful beginning. The oldRichmondbuildings remained to house only the evening Technical Institute.

With the departure of Mr Beasley in 1939, the second phase in the history ofSheneCountySchoolcame to an end. Besides consolidating the foundations which Mr Buckhurst had laid in the academic field, Mr Beasley widened the vision of school life into its many societies and created a competitive but friendly atmosphere within the school by the house system.

 

CHAPTER 3

EAST SHEEN COUNTY SCHOOL FOR BOYS

During the 1920’s, Surrey County Council founded a number of new Grammar Schools throughout the county including both a boys’ and a girls’ grammar school at East Sheen in the Borough of Barnes.EastSheenCountySchoolfor Boys was opened onJanuary 18th 1927without the pomp and the celebrities heralding theRichmondopening. Two years later,EastSheenCountySchoolfor Girls was opened nearby.

There was considerable delay over the building of the boys’ school for two reasons: firstly there was an attempt to build a new school to serve both Richmond and Barnes at Pesthouse Common, Richmond, but the fact that Barnes did not get Borough status till 1927 may have contributed to its rejection: secondly the Sheen gentry campaigned earnestly for years for a mixed grammar school but the decisions and policies of the County Council prevailed.

The school was paid for entirely by the County Council and the headmaster appointed from the 1st January 1927. There were 192 applications for this post and the fortunate applicant was Mr. H. H. Shephard M.A.(Oxon), a scholar in mathematics. Four assistant masters were appointed and on 3rd January the school held its entrance examinations, similar to the eleven plus. All the boys living in Barnes were transferred from Richmondand the remaining numbers filled by the results of the entrance examination. The fees payable at the school were four guineas a term and over half the boys were fee-paying.  A  number of boys joined the school from St .Leonard’s Private School, and these formed the nucleus of the school football and cricket teams as sport was very much to the fore at that school: this, in turn, accounts for the very quick successes in these sports in competition with other schools.

One hundred boys were admitted initially to the school:  one first form contained those boys under eleven, forms 2A and 2B consisted of those boys who entered the school  by the entrance scholarship examination and forms 3A and 3B were mainly boys who had been transferred from Richmond, Provision was made in the school to accommodate two streams throughout the school plus a post-matriculation sixth form.

Four houses were formed and named by the Headmaster. There has been some difficulty to this day in deciding how Mr Shephard chose such admirable names as Hood,York,FifeandTemple. They are all names of famous people who have had connections in Sheen and Barnes but it is possible that Temple is the odd one out because it has two syllables instead of one: it appears that Mr. Shephard attempted to find four single syllable names connected with the neighbourhood: three names were suitable but he was stumped for a fourth name and thus resorted in the end to the inclusion of Temple.

As a new School, East Sheen could incorporate all the successful systems and interests of other schools and develop them. There is, accordingly, no two-stage development as outlined in the RichmondSchool.  The School magazine, for example, called ‘The Lion’ (of Surrey presumably) was first published in the Summer Term of 1927:  a Scout Troop and a Debating Society were both initiated in 1927: and football and cricket matches were played as house competitions on a league basis in the same year.

In 1928, a silver cup was given to the school by Mr Northover: the Northover cup has always been the most sought after trophy in the school, for it is presented to the Champion House of the School year.   It is more commonly called the ‘Cock House’ Cup. The presentation of the Studies Cup was also started in 1928 and was awarded on a house basis for good work— commendations earned points for the house and detentions lost points. Swimming and Athletic Sports were included in the Cock House Competition in 1929and also in this year, the school printed its first and only magazine at the School Press.

In 1930, theMusic Study Circle, Junior and Senior Branches of the Debating Society, Chess Club,Scientific Society, Geographical and Dramatic Societies were all flourishing. During the 1930’s other societies and clubs were formed including the Natural History (1935) and Photographic (1935) Societies, Radio (1937) and Badminton (1938) Clubs, but many of these were intermittent and a continuous history for any one of them is rather the exception. The need was realised for an Old Boys Association in 1930 and later the following year, this association was formed,

As the School started with a third form in 1927, it was not until the 1930’s that academic success was tasted. In 1931 the school gained seventeen matriculations and in 1932 the first County Major Scholarship was won, followed two years later by the first State Scholarship. With the advent of the sixth form in the 1930’s, great rivalry broke out between the arts and science sixths and this has continued unbroken to the present day.

During 1934, there were three hundred boys at the school:  twenty nine out of thirty gained their General School Certificate, nineteen matriculated and six gained Honours Certificates. School visits were first introduced in this year when a party went toSouth Wales to visit a coal-mine and also a tinplate factory nearSwansea.

The school magazine stated in 1936 that the school societies were continuing their useful work and were great successes: however a plea was made for more boys to attend meetings. The first foreign school trip was made in 1936 when a party visitedParis. Experiments were made in the same year to cut down the amount of homework but in an age of competing schools nothing much was achieved.

The school changed from a six day week to a five day week in 1937 under pressures from the local Rabbi:  school, henceforth, was from Monday to Friday until 4 15pm and a five-day week continued after the amalgamation.

The school scout troop must be treated as a separate organisation: the troop was formed in May 1927 and was known as the 1st East Sheen when nineteen boys were enrolled by Philip Carr, then District Commissioner. In 1930 the troop was over one hundred strong, divided into three sections but in 1935 this was reduced to two sections. With the amalgamation, no doubt, the scouts of the 23rdRichmondwere joined with the 1st East Sheen. Hundreds of camps have been organised and many King and Queen Scouts have passed through the group since its foundation. The school at East Sheen had thus a scout troop since its first year and many hundreds of scouts have been indebted over the years to its founder, Mr Shackell, and Mr MacLaren, both still atSheneCountySchool.

The events leading up to the decision to amalgamate the two schools occupy the period between 1937 and 1939. The combined populations of the Boroughs of Richmond and Barnes totalled 80,000, with little likelihood of any further great increase, and in this area there were four two-streamed grammar schools, two for boys and two for girls. This system, the County Council considered, was running at the maximum cost with the minimum of educational efficiency. Thus Surrey County Council deemed reorganisation necessary, especially as theRichmondSchoolfor Boys building was totally inadequate in the busyKew Roadbut also because the numbers in all the schools were falling:

 

Approx. Accommodation                                             1937    1938    1939 estimate

RichmondBoys                        230                  229      230      220

RichmondGirls                         350+                250      244      220

E. Sheen Boys                          300                  280      261      240

E. Sheen Girls                           300                  249      224      180

 

The decreasing numbers were partly due to increased grammar school building by Middlesex County Council and the transfer of Middlesex children living in Twickenham, Isleworth and Chiswick from Richmond and East Sheen into their own grammar schools:   they were also partly due to the effects of the great depression in the 1930’s as parents found they were unable to pay grammar school fees. The idea was again put forward for building a new school at Pesthouse Comuon, Richmond but the County Council estimated that the combined Boys’ and Girls’ Grammar Schools at East Sheen would house the boys of both Boroughs, whilst the Richmond Girls’ School would accommodate the combined total of girls using playing fields in the Old Deer Park:  there would thus be no need for additional building. This, therefore, was the County Council’s plan for educational reorganisation. The annual intake in 1938 for grammar schools was fifty nine boys and sixty one girls, and there was no indication that future intakes would exceed this figure.

Violent opposition arose in Richmond at the proposal that the town should lose its unique grammar school to the Borough of Barnes, the Borough Council was almost unanimous In its petition for a new school within the Borough; signed petitions from parents and dignitaries of the town were all presented to the County Council, In 1938 the Borough Council even carried a resolution that they would prefer to have a mixed secondary grammar school rather than have the facilities for boys in the Borough moved to Barnes.Richmondhas always been jealous of its rich past, and the revolt of theRichmondgentry was not unexpected.Richmondhad been an education authority for years, an institution which Barnes had never had, and everything was done to keep existing traditions from passing to its younger neighbour. The parents of the East Sheen girls were equally indignant that their daughters would have to travel toRichmond: but all petitions and resolutions were to no avail as the decisions of the County Council were implemented.

 

CHAPTER 4

RICHMOND AND EAST SHEEN COUNTY SCHOOL FOR BOYS

 

With considerable tact, Mr Shephard called his new amalgamated school Richmondand EastSheenCountySchoolfor Boys — the name Grammar was later added officially in brackets after the l944 Education Act. Richmondwas placed first in order to placate to some degree the citizens of Richmondfor the loss of their historic school. The enlarged school commenced in 1939 with four hundred boys, twenty two assistant masters and two visiting masters.   Many of theRichmond staff sought posts elsewhere but six moved with the School to Sheen.

The juniors (10-13 years) occupied the former girls school inHertford Avenueseparated from the main boys building by three hundred yards of playing fields. The seniors occupied the main boys building but moved to the other building for many of the laboratory subjects. The school was well endowed with trophies from the two schools and in playing fields as the former girls’ playing field andRichmond’s ground at Pesthouse Common were both available. A new introduction in 1939 was the levelling of a general sports subscription for each boy to pay and in return received copies of the magazine, use of sports equipment etc. Another advantage of the combined school was the facilities for providing school dinners on the promises at theHertford Avenuebuilding.

The school houses of East Sheen continued the same in name, andRichmondboys were distributed into them. The scout troop fromRichmondwas probably also amalgamated with the 1st East Sheen troop.

However the outbreak of war hampered the peaceful union of the schools. As the boys were not using all the building inHertford Avenue, girls from the Secondary Modern School at Mortlake were housed there during the war because they had no air-raid shelters at their other school. Gradually, the girls took over control of the whole building and remained there after the war. The laboratories at the now Girls School ore still used by the boys for Sixth Form Work, although new laboratories and classrooms have been added to the main boys building. Permission to use parts of theHertfordAvenueGirlsSchoolhas never finally been withdrawn but the boys lost control of these areas in 1948.

During the war Drawing underwent considerable change and henceforth was referred to as Art.   Renewed thinking into this subject led to a change in methods and aims of teaching. The former emphasis was on object drawing but the great majority of students found this of little use. Modern art training is now aimed at developing the students’ powers of original observation and memory of expression.

Three bombs were dropped on the school grounds during the war but no major damage to buildings resulted. The effects of the war in no way diminished the successes of the school: in l943 forty two students entered for the School Certificate examination and all of them passed; twenty nine gained their Matriculation Certificate. The same year, there were eight Higher School Certificates in Science awarded and three County Major Scholarships won. In 1944 the Higher School Examination was held in an air-raid shelter and results were again favourable.

Societies and clubs continued to thrive throughout the war: old societies were revived and new ones formed. In 1940 there was thought of setting up a Cadet Corps in theRichmondtradition and a circular was sent to parents for their views. Accordingly in l941 the Cadet Corp. was refounded and affiliated to theRichmondunit of the Home Guard. At the close of the war, the Corps was stated to be ‘in abeyance’ and was never to be revived again in the school’s history. Under existing regulations in the Army Cadet Force which necessitated close co-operation with non-school units, it became increasingly difficult to participate in the various functions arising from these changes at the end of the war. It was felt, moreover, that the School Cadet Unit had lost its entity as a Schoo1 organisation.

The formation of the Cadet Corps in no way affected the success of the Scout Troop. An Air Scout Section was formed in l941 and a Senior Scout Section in l946 when Imperial Headquarters deemed a separate section necessary for boys between the ages of fifteen and eighteen.

Every year throughout the war, harvest camps were organised by the staff for the purpose of helping farmers gather the harvest. Whilst younger masters were on active service, female staff were introduced to carry on the work of the school uninterrupted.

At the end of the war, 75 old boys of the school had lost their lives and onNovember 13th 1947, a plaque was unveiled in memory of those killed on active service.

With the post 1945 election campaign in progress over the country, the school embarked on a similar, but light-hearted election:   it is interesting to note that the Liberal Candidate came top of the poll with the Conservative second.

The annual cross-country race which is the plague of many a schoolboy owes its innovation to the return to peace, and in l946 resulted in the school spending a strenuous but healthy afternoon trotting roundRichmondPark. The race counted as a House Championship and was included in the Cock House Competition.

The 1944 Education Act stated that grammar school education was to be made free to all who had the necessary ability: entrance examinations were thus held for pupils to compete for these places and consequently academic standards rose sharply. Of special note is the achievement of J. Carey in 1951 who gained the school’s first Open Scholarship atOxford. The examination changes to the General Certificate of Education in no way diminished successes as five boys gained eight subjects at Ordinary Level and seven boys gained seven subjects; but it is interesting to note that since 1951, some new subjects have been introduced to the curriculum which, in part, may be due to the emphasis on passing particular subjects and not on gaining a general standard certificate — examples of these subjects are Spanish, economics, geology, biology and zoology. A new biological laboratory was built in1953.

In 1953, the headmaster, Mr H.H. Shephard, retired after twenty five years service at the school. The small two-streamed school at East Sheen, and later ofRichmondand East Sheen, constantly having an approximate complement of 350 boys since the amalgamation, had grown in academic and athletic attainment. The very small turnover in staff attests to the fact that this has always been a happy and contented school and Mr Shephard must be praised for this.

Mr Shephard’s retirement heralded the arrival of the present headmaster, Mr G,P. Rawlings O.B.E.,M.A.(Oxon). Mr Rawlings like his three predecessors was educated at Oxfordand read mathematics as his main subject. Before his appointment, he was the Director of Studies at the naval training establishment  RMS Worcester, where a party of Richmond Cadets had earlier gone for a course in 1913.

Since his arrival in 1953, Mr Rawlings has given renewed vigour and effort to all aspects of school life with the result that academic achievements have surpassed preceding years on almost every occasion between 1953 and 1960. On the sports field, the results are no less startling by the number of records broken recently and the number of boys representing the County in different sports. The years from 1951 marked stages in the great increase of the Sixth Form. The greatest influx was in 1954 after eleven boys had passed eight subjects and ten boys passed seven subjects at Ordinary Level. Even so, at Advanced Level that year, eight students gained four passes and four students passed three Subjects……as a result, eight County Major Scholarships were won. In 1956, 55 Ordinary Level Certificates were won, equal to the number of admissions made annually, and 31 Advanced Level Certificates; ten County Major Scholarships and three State Scholarships were obtained by Advanced Level Candidates.

A widening in the school curriculum led in turn to a widening of out-of-school activities. The School Choir was reorganised and made effective in l949 and new societies included the Christian Union, Glee Club, Fencing Club and Puppet Club.

At present, there are twenty four assistant masters and four visiting masters in a school with 385 boys: of this number, seventy are in the sixth form, predominantly on the science side.

In the early 1950’s, it became apparent that the name of the school was much too long -RichmondandEastSheenCounty(Grammar) School for Boys. The Old Boys Association had realised this also and had named their association ‘Shene Old Grammarians’, using the old name of theRichmondarea. The school, therefore, campaigned for a change in name to the more suitable ‘SheneCountySchoolfor Boys’ and this name received Ministry recognition in 1957.

In 1957 the fourth form started to take the Ordinary Level examination in certain subjects, particularly mathematics and French and those who did well went straight into the Sixth Form. The importance of the Sixth Form in modern education cannot be over- emphasised and it is significant to note the additions to the basic curriculum when comparing 1954 with 1960.

In 1954, Arts subjects taught were:  to Advanced Level …Latin, English, French, German, Geography and History:  to Ordinary Level……. Spanish, Science subjects:  to Advanced Level :  Pure and applied mathematics, Physics, Chemistry and Biology. In 1960, Arts subjects to Advanced level:…… Latin, English, French, German, Geography, History and Economics:  to Ordinary Level - Spanish, Geology and Technical drawing.: Science subjects to Advanced Level ….Pure and Applied mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology, botany, and zoology:  to Ordinary Level ….Spanish and technical drawing.

Early in the 1950’s, the school adopted the MV Waipawa under the British Ship Adoption Society’s Scheme. It belongs to the Shaw Saville Line, has a gross tonnage of 12,000 and is mainly engaged on theAustraliaandNew Zealandroute.

In 1957, the awards for two school scholarship trusts were started. The two generous benefactors to the school were Clifford B. Edgar and D. Auchtorlonie.   Alderman C.B. Edgar, a former Mayor of Richmond, was prominent in the foundation of theRichmondSchool: Professor D. Auchterlonie was a member of the staff of theRichmondSchool in its early days and he subsequently occupied a Professional Chair inIndia. Both left substantial sums to the school to found scholarships, and the Governors of the school were in a position to award scholarships, without detriment to other scholarships won, to boys entering University in 1957.

An Old Boys’ Medal was initiated in 1956. A generous Old Boy of the school presented the school with a die from which medals may be struck. The medal is used to mark distinction of the highest order in various spheres of the life of the school.

The Jubilee of Richmond County School was celebrated in 1956 and a fund was launched for a Jubilee Library: the amount required was raised and the library opened in 1958.

A school motto was introduced by Mr Rawlings in the Jubilee Year of 1956 — namely, ‘Enrich The Time To Come’.  This is taken from the last scene of the last Act of Shakespeare’s King Richard III, where Henry, Duke of Richmond, has declared the end of civil strife, and in token of the union of the two factions suggests the Tudor Rose, the badge of Shene County School:

 

‘We will unite the white rose and the red,

Smile heaven upon this fair conjunction

That long have frown’d upon their enmity!

What traitor hears me and says not amen?

O, now let Richmond and Elizabeth,

The true succeedors of each royal house,

By God’s fair ordinance conjoin together

And let their heirs, God, if Thy will be so,

Enrich the time to come with smooth-fac’d peace,

With smiling plenty and fair prosperous days!’

 

 

It can be said that the happy union of the two schools in 1939 has served and will serve to ‘Enrich the time to come’.

Finally, it is noted that a new school building is being planned but the site for it is not yet certain: to judge from the past history of the school, a growing institution will always need additional buildings and no doubt a new school would herald a new era in the history of Shene County School for Boys.

 

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HERBERT HENRY SHEPHARD 1893-1986

 

HEADMASTER EAST SHEEN GRAMMAR SCHOOL 1927-1953

 

Written and researched by JA Gosling on behalf of Ludlow Museum and Resource Centre.   HH Shephard's collection of Natural History and Geological  artefacts was donated to the Museum after HHS's death in 1986


Herbert Henry Shephard (1893-1986)

 

An East Sheen Grammar School old boy has commented that the subject of this history, Herbert Henry Shephard, was, on his appointment as the first headmaster of the school in 1927, ‘the youngest appointed head in the country’. This accolade came at the end of an extremely busy twenty years encompassing scholarships toManchesterGrammar SchoolandSt John’s,Oxford, service in the First World War, a teacher’s diploma at theUniversityofManchesterand periods at two previous schools not to mention marriage in 1922.  A lengthy and well deserved tenure at East Sheen then followed, but again this was certainly not a restful tenure.

 

Family

 

Herbert Henry Shephard was born in the parish of Chorlton-cum-Hardy, a suburb of South Manchester, on the 22nd of March 1893. His father William Henry Shephard (1848-1925) was a warehouseman in the cotton trade but was working on his own account in later years. William Henry married twice; to Emma Moore in Chorlton 1874 - Emma died in 1884 - and to Annie Hall (1859-1925) inManchester 1890. Annie Hall was the owner a glass and china shop. The family; Henry William, mother Annie, brother William Joseph and Herbert Henry together with a domestic servant, were living at 153 Wilmslow Road, South Manchester over the period 1901-1911.  This is a fairly substantial four storey house ‘over the shop’ having 7 rooms and was presumably Annie’s shop hence the occupation given to William Henry Shephard in the 1901 census ‘grey cloth, glass and china dealer’.Wilmslow Road forms a major entrance toManchester from the south leading intoOxford Street and the centre of the city. That part inclusive of number 153 is now known as the ‘Curry Mile’ - number 153 houses the Halal Kebab House.

 

Herbert Henry’s grandfather, Henry Whittaker Shephard was alsoManchesterborn in 1824 and was also a warehouseman. He married Margaret Griffiths in 1844 who produced nine children of whom William Henry was the fourth born. Shephard’s great grandparents on his mother’s side were also the great grandparents of L S Lowry.

 

Education

 

Manchester Grammar School         Matriculated 1912

 

Herbert Henry Shephard entered theManchesterGrammar Schoolin 1904 as a foundation scholar. A foundation scholarship gave exemption from fees, was means tested and awarded to boys who passed the entrance exam and whose parents earned below a certain threshold. He was winner of the Langworthy Prize, the Shakespeare and Brackenbury Scholarships and the Early English Text Society Prize. He was also top of his form in his third and in his final year while winning various form prizes and certificates.

 

St John’s College, Oxford      Exhibitioner. 1st Class Mathematical Moderations 1913;

BA 1919; 2nd Class Hons Physics and MA 1920

 

The studies atSt John’swere split by the war. After matriculation in 1912 he passed examinations in mathematics but had to delay studies until after the war to complete a BA in Physics. He finally obtained his MA in 1920.

 

University of Manchester      Secondary Teacher’s Diploma (1st Class) received 1921

 

Herbert Henry Shephard entered the University on the 13th October 1920. The University Training College Panel, meeting on the 15th June 1920, awarded a Shephard a maintenance grant of £135 plus full payment of tuition fees for the 9 month course. His home address was given as69 Dickenson Rd, Rusholme,Manchester.

 

The above suggests that Shephard was a recipient of a grant etc. from the Board of Education scheme for the education of ex-servicemen. The scheme was established by the Government in December 1918 with the object of restoring a supply of men of higher general, scientific, professional and business attainments. The final date for submission of applications was 30th June 1920 with the number of awards at some 26,000 far exceeding the original estimate.

 

Military Service

 

Teaching records show that Herbert Shephard was on military service through the years 1915 to 1919. This is supported by his gazetting on 23rd February 1915 as a 2nd lieutenant in the  East Lancashire Regiment. Unfortunately his service record is not available – many such records were lost to German bombing in the second war. His medal roll is on record. There exist two clues as to his war service; an East Sheen old boy notes that ‘“Our headmaster ….. had served in Mesopotamia during the First World War. He could sometimes be prevailed to relate his experiences to an eager class of boys.” His medal roll confirms that he was in the East Lancashire Regiment as a 2nd Lieutenant/Lieutenant. The ‘first theatre of war’ relating to the receipt of his medals is coded as 2B. The roll is dated 1915.

 

The only unit of the East Lancs to have served in Mesopotamiais the 6th (Service) Battalion as part of the 13th (Western) Division. The 13th Division, part of Kitchener’s New Army, was formed in February 1915 and was originally intended for the Western Front. Plans were changed and the Division sailed for Gallipoli in June of that year where it fought at ANZAC Cove, Suvla Bay etc. It reformed in Egypt in January 1916 and went to Mesopotamia (Iraq) as part of the army attempting the unsuccessful relief of the garrison at Kut. The Division remained in Mesopotamia until February 1919 when it disbanded. The 6th Battalion East Lancs stayed on as an occupying force attached to the Indian 34th Division (see Appendix for more details).

 

As to Herbert Shephard’s involvement in the above, his medal roll code 2B is indeed for Gallipoli but this coding only applies after January 1916 which conflicts with the 1915 date on the roll. Did he join the Division prior to their departure in June 1915 or did he join inEgyptin January 1916 – there was no mention of Gallipoli in the old boy’s comments? Later information received fromSt John’ssuggests that he was present at Gallipoli and also inEgypt. This presence was confirmed by a relative whose father, Herbert Henry’s brother William Joseph, informed that ‘he (Herbert Henry) was shot while in Gallipoli. Fortunately he had a metal cigarette case in his breast pocket, and that deflected the bullet which was heading straight for his heart. He survived many hours (unconscious?) in no-man’s land. I do not know if he eventually crawled back to our lines, or whether he was rescued by one of our patrols.’ A story which confirms his presence in Gallipoli and indicates that he volunteered very early in the war.

 

The War Diary for the 6th Battalion, at least for their foray intoMesopotamia, is available at the National Archives and might provide some useful comment.  Whatever the circumstances, a posting to Gallipoli and Mesopotamia, although a scene of very many deaths and injuries, was possibly preferable to a posting to the Western Front just prior to the Somme and Passchendaele etc.

 

Herbert Henry Shephard is included in the Manchester City Battalions Book Roll of Honour a roll initiated in 1916 mostly relating to those enlisting from companies in theManchesterarea but including pupils of theManchesterGrammar School.

 

Teaching Career

 

On leaving theUniversityofManchesterwith a teachers diploma Herbert Shephard first took up employ in 1921 at theRoyalGrammar School,Worcesteras a senior mathematics master. The Grammar School, still today an independent school, was founded before 1291 (possibly in 685). He stayed only until the next year but meanwhile married Elizabeth May Richards at a register office inWorcesteron the 22 July 1922. Elizabeth May was 25 at that time and was living in Llandridnod Wells while Herbert Henry gave his address as 37 Ombersley Road, Worcester.

 

He then went on to the Merchant Taylors’ School, Crosby,Liverpoolas a senior physics master where he remained until the end of 1926. MerchantTaylors’ was again an ancient establishment founded in 1620 running under the auspices of theTaylor’s Company until 1910. While in Liverpool Herbert Henry made an application for his war medals on the 12th November 1923 and was sent the 1914-1915 Star, the British War Medal and the Victory Medal in January 1924. The medal roll notes his addresses as 10AdelaideTerrace,Waterloonr Liverpool andSt Alexandra Road,WaterloonrLiverpoolover that period.

 

Finally, there was a major change in background from the previous historical schools when  he went as headmaster to the brand new East Sheen County School for Boys located on Hertford Avenue, Sheen. Mr H. H. Shephard M.A. (Oxon) was appointed headmaster at a salary of £47 monthly from the 1st January 1927 chosen from 192 applicants. As mentioned above, an old boy suggested that Shephard was the youngest headmaster in the country at the time of his appointment. The school opened on Tuesday 18th January 1927. Ninety six boys took the Common Entrance exam, six failed to pass but 15 boys were transferred from Richmond County School for Boys giving an initial school roll of 105. There were four full-time staff and three part-time staff. The school was regraded to a Grade III school from the 1st April 1932 with a roll of over 300 boys, the headmaster’s salary thereby increasing to £62 monthly less an enforced 10% reduction (made on all staff).

 

The then named East Sheen County School for Boys was amalgamated with the Richmond CountySchool for Boys in 1939 to the consternation of many Richmond natives. Mr Shephard became head of the combined school and remained so until his retirement in 1953. The school, later renamed Shene Grammar School, continued its life as a grammar school until a Borough reorganisation hived off the sixth form leaving a comprehensive school on site. The site is now occupied by the Richmond Park Academy

 .

This long tenure at East Sheen has led to a number of old boy reminiscences being made on Headmaster Shephard all to be found on the old boys website at www.sheneob.co.uk   The following comments are noted:

 

‘Our headmaster Mr Shephard MA was in his 30s and had served inMesopotamiaduring the First World War. He could sometimes be prevailed upon to relate his experiences to an eager class of boys. He was the youngest appointed head in the country and was allowed to choose his own team of masters, all with good degrees, to teach some 320 boys from ages of 10 to 161/2’

John Beardmore 1930-31

 

‘The headmaster Mr Shephard was logical in his allocation of duties so the chemi-master was in charge of gas-raid precautions. Mr Shephard roamed the corridors keeping his eye on things through the clear patch in anti-blast netting on the door glazing.’

 

‘The headmaster took maths with a very well behaved class, since he had the ultimate sanction. I was a natural at maths and couldn’t think why anyone found it difficult or needed to study. His dictum “There are many ways of killing a cat than stuffing it with cream” was not helpful to those who, at that age, didn’t know of any way. He marked one exam out of 105 and I was mightily displeased but inaudible when he marked me down to 98 for poor handwriting.’

Bob Mousley 1940-45

 

‘The headmaster, H.H Shephard, had virtually founded, or intellectually refounded, the school with hand-picked teachers and he was a mathematician with literary, religious and musical interests. Occasionally he took over our class when a teacher was away. Once he read us the whole of Wordsworth’s Michael and asked us to react to the last line ‘And never lifted up a single stone’. We made nothing of it. I suspect Michael was outside the range of our sensibility, and we compared it very unfavourably with the rich diction of Keats. Occasionally he took over religious instruction, as it was then called. One period was given over to St.John of the Cross, and he asked us to raise our hands if we understood anything of the Dark Night of the Soul.  This was more dangerous personal exposure even than responding to poetry, but I raised my hand all the same, and maybe John Chalker did too. Several periods were given over to Albert Schweitzer and his biblical criticism, and maybe this provided a prelude to the severe shock I sustained a few years later in 1950 on reading Schweitzer’s The Quest of the Historical Jesus.

For senior boys the headmaster ran theMusic Circle, a solemn conclave of the serious minded held in the library. He supplied the records, which were changed every five minutes by Hodges, the librarian, a bespectacled character, who sometimes invited me to his home to watch him conduct the Emperor Concerto or the Ninth Symphony. I was the next librarian and it was during my watch that the Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, the generous gift (I believe) of the headmaster, disappeared. I was suspected of purloining it for my private use, which was a very natural supposition, but untrue. I hope the headmaster believed my protestations.  It was in the library that he surprised us by telling us we made up an intellectual elite. He also surprised me personally by asking me to read out an essay on the renaissance of English music. The essay ended with references to Edward Elgar and the sentence ‘We now await the master’. I could not imagine why this was greeted with smothered laughter.

The head arranged for me to play Brahms D minor Ballade for the parents’ opening day and promised he would see to it that they kept quiet. When we were about to leave school he devised a special prize for me, since there was no specific achievement for which I deserved a prize. It was Albert Einstein’s Mozart. Perhaps it was partly in acknowledgement of my role as pianist for morning assembly, where I enjoyed using the piano to coax reluctant male masses into singing.

David Martin Autobiography

Perhaps the most evocative comment comes from the Reverend Richard Strevens later vicar at St Michael’s Pirbright inSurrey:

I’d like to pay a personal tribute to H H Shephard as the founder master of the school aided by a mature and settled staff he was to set the tone of the school, hard academic work .. good behaviour and courtesy. In my view, looking back over 50 years, he had a spiritual, and I use the word in the widest possible sense, influence on the school as he gave an appreciation of the deeper things in life. I owe him a debt of gratitude that I can never fully repay and I treasure the letter he wrote for my ordination to Priesthood on September 29th 1963.

Rev. Dick Strevens 1946-53

The Reverend Strevens, when later commenting on the Old Boys web site, noted that ‘The long history of the School is a splendid piece of work and I read it with a great deal of interest.   It reinforces my considered opinion that H H Shephard laid very firm foundations for his pupils.   What a great scholar and Christian gentleman he was.  We all owe him a very great deal. I can recall a prayer that he used regularly at assembly that included the wish that 'we should be kept free from pride, vanity, boasting and forwardness'.  

The above obviously gives only a snapshot of  27 years of effort in the establishment of a new school, the combining of two schools both proud of their history and a somewhat fraught period during the second world war when fortunately the bombs fell some distance from the school buildings.

 

Retirement

 

The School Magazine of Spring 1954 reports that following his retirement at Christmas 1953 Headmaster Shephard departed ‘startling everybody by refusing to allow any ceremony, gift, presentation or speech to be made, claiming that he was carrying away so many intangible memories that he needed nothing else’.

 

As to where he retired was not immediately certain. He died when living at The Little House, Bucknell, Shropshire. One resident of Bucknell thinks he remembers the Shephards from around 1953 so he may have moved directly from the East Sheen area at that time. A relative has letters headed The Little House, Bucknell, dating from 1967 onwards.  Doubt was removed on looking at the details of his mollusc collection. The collection ranges 1950-1954 with samples being collected locally to both the East Sheen area and to Shropshirein the earlier period so he was at least visiting the Bucknell area prior to retirement. But there are no items collected in the south during 1954 and there are two items, helix hortensis, and helix memoralis collected the 13th May 1954 at the Little House, Bucknell so a more or less immediate move is suggested. His wife Elizabeth Mary nee Richardson, has already been noted as living in nearby Llandrindod Wells at the time of marriage. Her family were in fact based in Knighton just over the border in Radnorshire some six miles distant from Bucknell.  The couple therefore presumably retired to the Welsh Marches to be near the in-laws. Mrs Shephard died in 1966.

 

Bucknell itself is a small Shropshire village located very near to the border withWalesand with Herefordshire. It had a population of 672 in 2007. Two residents of Bucknell recall the Shephards as well educated and ‘very nice, one even saying that they were ‘posh’. His wide interests have been noted above, although there is no mention of natural history. A relative does recall that he was involved in a survey of English plant life having the responsibility of identifying all native plants in a 5km square. Surprisingly he was not a member of St Mary’s Church in Bucknell. 

 

Certainly a quiet retirement was called for following the above recorded almost non-stop effort encompassing ManchesterGrammar Schoolto retirement from East Sheen. The Herbert Henry Shephard Collection is seemingly the major inheritance from this long period of comparative rest. He died while resident at The Little House, Bucknell on the 17th January 1986.

 

The Collections

 

The major part of the Shephard mollusc collection consists of some 600 land and freshwater mollusca covering 135 species collected by Shephard over the period 1950 to 1954 (just pre and post his retirement). Nearly all have date and location recorded and it is this information which makes the collection valuable. The remainder of the natural history collection includes marine mollusca, mostly collected off the Welsh coast, grasses, ferns, butterflies and moths etc.

 

The geological history of Shropshirealso tempted him to commence collecting fossils from the immediate area of Bucknell, particularly in nearby quarries. His fossil collection was passed to the museum in stages mainly over the period up to the late 1950s. This collection was placed strictly on loan to the LudlowMuseum. That he was proud of his efforts is shown by a letter dated 14 December 1978 where, on hearing that the SedgewickMuseum, Cambridgehad requested the keeping of one particular item, a Didrepanon specimen, he stressed that the collection was on loan while accepting that the samples should be made available for research. The correspondence resulted in the perusal of the entry books for the period up to 1978 clearly noting that the samples were on loan.

 

The full collection was placed permanently in the custody of the Ludlow Museum and Resource Centre in 1992 with the full agreement of the executor who noted that ‘in doing so, I am sure that we are carrying out what would have been is wish, and we are gratified to learn that these collections are still considered to be of value by your museum.’

Sources       

 

ManchesterGrammar School                         Archivist: Rachel Kneale      

r.a.kneale@mgs.org

 

UniversityofManchester                                Archivist: James N Peters

james.n.peters@manchester.ac.uk

 

St John’sand the Queen’s Colleges,Oxford,Oxford  Archivist: Michael Riordan

michael.riordan@sjc.ox.ac.uk

       

Shene Grammar Old Boys     David Richardson         mrjflt@blueyonder.co.uk              

Ian Hay-Campbell                StMary’s, Bucknell              bucknell@hayc.f2s.com

 

Geoffrey Colin Shephard                                      

 

 

 

Documents

Herbert Henry Shephard       Last will & testament                          14 September 1978

Herbert Henry Shephard       Letter to J Norton,Ludlow Museum        14 December 1978

 

Web Sites 

Ancestry                                    www.ancestry.co.uk

Findmypast                               www.findmypast.co.uk                

General Register Office               www.gro.gov.uk

National Archives                        www.nationalarchives.gov.uk

Shene Grammar School Old Boys  www.sheneob.co.uk

The London Gazette                    www.london-gazette.co.uk   

The Wartime Memories Project      www.wartimememoriesproject.com

The Long, Long Trail                    www.1914-1918.net

 

Appendix

 

The 6th (Service) Battalion, East Lancashire Regiment

 

The 6th (Service) Battalion, East Lancashire Regiment was raised at Preston in August 1914 as part of Kitchener’s First New Army and joined the 38th Brigade, 13th (Western Division) and trained at Lucknow Barracks, Tidworth spending the winter in billets at Winchester. Near the end of February the Division concentrated at Blackdown in Hampshire, with the 6th East Lancs at Alma barracks. They sailed from Avonmouth on the 16th June 1915 landing at Alexandria then moving on to Mudros, by the 6th of July to prepare for a landing at Gallipoli. The infantry landed at Cape Helles between the 6th and 16th July to relieve 29th Division. They returned to Mudros at the end of the month, and the entire Division landed at ANZAC Cove between the 3rd and 5th August. They were in action in the battle of Sari Bair, the Battle of Russel’s Top and the Battle of Hill 60, at ANZAC. Soon afterwards they transferred from ANZAC to Suvla Bay. They were evacuated from Suvla on the 19th and 20th of December 1915, and after a weeks rest they moved to the Helles bridgehead. They were in action during the last Turkish attacks at Helles on the 7th of January 1916 and were evacuated from Helles on the 8th and 9th. The Division concentrated at Port Said, holding forward posts in the Suez Canal defences. On the 12th of February 1916 they moved to Mesopotamia, to join the forces being assembled near Sheikh Sa’ad for relief of the besieged garrison at Kut al Amara. They were joined by the Tigris Corps on the 27th of March and were in action in the unsuccessful attempts to relieve Kut. They were in action in the battle of Kut al Amara, the capture of the Hai Salient, the capture of Dahra Bend and the passage of the Diyala, in the pursuit of the enemy towards Baghdad. Units of the Division were the first troops to enter Baghdad, when it fell on the 11 March 1917. The Division then joined ‘Marshall’s Column’ and pushed north across Iraq, fighting at Delli ‘Abbas, Duqma, Nahr Kalis, crossing the ‘Adhaim on the 18 April and fighting at Shat al ‘Adhaim. Later in the year they were in action in the Second and Third Actions of Jabil Hamrin and fought at Tuz Khurmatli the following April. By the 28th May 1918, Divisional HQ had moved to Dawalib and remained there until the end of the war, enduring extreme summer temperatures.

 

The Wartime Memories Project – The Great War

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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