Saturday, 5 March 2011

Step back in time

It was another one of those Alumni events. A visit to my old school... this time to see the latest new buildings. I suppose that most schools that have been on the same site for most of their history are a bit of a hodge-podge of old and new. 

That was certainly the case with my school when I was there. 

The original old school building had been supplemented with a 'temporary' annexe just after the first world war (which has only been demolished in the latest building works)! 

The addition of a further classroom/library block formed a courtyard (again mostly demolished now); with horrendously long stairs to the science block (still there). Then there was the main hall and gym (both still there although the gym is now the canteen).

There were a variety of other blocks (old and new) including the canteen (with two classrooms), the music block, a ferw pairs of huts (heated with excellent boilers on which you could shrink crisp packets and chocolate bar wrappers) and the portacabin collection at the rear of the building providing more classroom space. All now gone.

Every classroom that was my form room (home room for those across the pond) has gone - but the new building is amazing. It provides a real environment for learning... I loved that all the rooms had names appropriate to their use (a classics room was called 'Virgil') but apparently they get referred to by numbers.

The tour of the school was followed by lunch in the canteen (nothing like lunch in the canteen in my day!) and then some musical performances by students. Finally a rousing rendition of the school song, which, apart from a mysterious middle verse which was never there in my day, I could still sing from memory. 

I always thought "Courage and Honour" was an excellent school motto and the line "Courage and Honour as England's women think of the school on the hill" always brings a lump to the throat.