"Three Dozen Years" - a history of the school
1919-1955 by H. C. Davis, M.A.
Mr. Davis was a teacher at the school at the time this book was written, c.1954/5.
Reflections: the School Magazine, Christmas 1926
This early issue of the magazine (volume 6 number 2) presents a picture of the school
that, in some ways, will seem familiar to later students.
But there are also items that are very much of the time with language and references
that are now obscure.
There must have been
pupils at the school in 1926 who had lost fathers or older brothers in the
Great War. The dead are remembered in a poem by Stephanie Wells. Olive Bracher describes
some girls of the 1920s. Elsie King and 'One of Them' provide contrasting views of fourth year
classes. Leslie Lambert reports on a Cake Sale and Olive Bracher (again) adds
a footnote in verse.
Ernest Bishop celebrates Downhills folk in The Song of the Red Caps and 'Spectator'
gives a short account of the school's seventh birthday celebrations. Competition between
the houses is recorded in the results of the Shield Competition (for studies) and the
Banner Competition (for sport).
The sports page could be from any time in Downhill's history and a poem by William
Allen describes a football match that became a mud-bath, an event which would surely
be repeated many times in later years. H. Kimmings describes the
temptations (and disappointments) of the Cookery Centre. There is a section devoted to
Old Scholars, including a report from India by Frank Cackett.
Also included here are some of the adverts which appeared in the magazine.
Our special thanks to Rita Read at Bruce Castle Museum for providing this issue
of the magazine. - R.B.
School Magazine, Summer 1956
The retirement of the headmaster, Mr. Mercer, is marked in this issue. Francis Bailey
contributes an article about being an actor, there's a review of "The Lady with a
Lamp" and a letter from Mademoiselle Ricois. There are reports of sporting events, and
of the parent-teachers and old scholar associations.
School Magazine, probably Summer 1959
This issue is actually undated and contains some ambiguous time references,
but Summer '59 seems to be a reasonable guess. The retirement of Mrs.
Martinez is recorded, together with
reports of Prize Day, the school trip to Kandersteg and the activities of the Old
Scholars' Association, the P.T.A. and the Chess Club (by M. Kelsey). Poetry and prose
contributors were: Rita Leighton, D. Gray, B. McGarry, Barbara Moy, P. Cox, R. Wignall,
Jennifer Norris, Sheila Piggott and Carol Murley. - R.B.
School Magazine, Summer 1960
*** The first page of this section also contains an article from
the local paper reporting the 1959 Prize Day. ***
This issue began with an obituary for Mr A. L. Fiddick, who was fatally
injured in a road accident. There are contributions which now have a distinctly period
feel: Carole Murley's poem about the thick fogs that used to plague London; B. Tye's
piece about a milkman, complete with horse-drawn cart and cobblestone road; and E.M.L.'s
article about learning to drive. Other contributors are R. Taylor, D. Watts,
B. Davis, J. R. Hanline, Christine Rudd, Joy Dowers, Haig Chimchirian, D. Watkinson,
Anita Potter, R. Hollister, Ruth Britzler (writing in French), Ken Goring, Veronica
Huffer, Pat Salmon, Iris Wise and A.S. (Mr. Shine?). Staff changes, Prize Day and sports
results are recorded. - R.B.
School Magazine, Christmas 1960
The headmaster provides the introduction and A.S.J. (Mr Jaques) reports on
Prize Day. The Christmas season is reflected in a short story and a report on the
the school Christmas tree by Veronica Huffer, and in a poem by L. Hammans. R. Lockyer
contributes a story about an old musician and coast and sea attract the attention of
Vera Moxon, Haig Chimchirian and K. R. Noble. Other contributions are by Keith
Dickinson, S. D. Wells, Janet Bloomfield, Michael Watts, P. Ryan, M. Houghton,
T. Hanley, Robert Edmund, Elizabeth Shad and R. James. There are reports on the Film
Club (Tony Dring), The Christian Union (Edna Walker), The Printing Club (A.J.S. - Mr.
Shine) plus a footnote by the editor A.S.J. - R.B.
School Magazine, Summer 1961
This issue begins with the headmaster's letter, followed by an editorial
by A.J.S. (Mr. Shine). There's a report on the Fête and a letter from Pauline Artis
written at the start of her training as a nurse. Then, R. Hollister and H. Chimchirian
write about the SS Beaverford. The first page of prose and verse contains items by
Linda Youell, K. Phipps, Barbara Moy, Anita Martin, B. Clarke, Janet Baxter, Anne
Murden and Patrick Thornton, whose description of fairs is accompanied by a lino-cut,
perhaps by Miss Brooker. The next page has items by Valerie Blyth, "Modest" (does
anyone want to claim authorship?), Brenda Foweraker, R. Mortimer, P.Lowman,
Brenda Beeson, P. Lyons and L. Hammans. There's another lino-cut, this time by
Trevor Burgess. The usual sports results are followed by reports of the Kandersteg
trip, a journey to Gibraltar described by M. Brown, and reports from the Film Club
(by Tony Dring) and the School Orchestra. The final page shows four adverts. -
School Magazine, Christmas 1961
Not a full issue of the magazine, this was called a "Christmas Collection" and
contained only seven pages. It has a distinctly seasonal feel, with items reflecting
winter by K. Neale, M. Houghton, R. Everest, R. Benbow, Rosemary Pajak and Mary Bardwell.
Christmas features in pieces by M. Houghton (again) and, appropriately, Gillian Frost.
Other contributors were Janet Bloomfield, Colin Jarman, Raymond Mortimer
and M. Peacock.
Thanks to Clive Hall for preserving this issue.
Also here is the Prize Day programme from November 1961. The prize day details were
normally included in the magazine, but were omitted this time. - R.B.
School Magazine, Summer 1962
Vera Moxon describes a visit to a television studio. An anonymous poem tackles the
subject of exams and other verse comes from Christine Rudd, L. Hammans, M. Houghton,
Rachel Harris and B. Kellard. Three pieces of imaginative prose are by Peter Ryan,
John Anderson and R. James. There's no editorial in this
issue, but there are items about the Prefects' Social (Vera Moxon), the School Choir and
Orchestra (David Johnson), the Christian Union (Ken Carveley) and the production of
'The Inspector Calls' (R.S.).
Another issue saved by Clive Hall. - R.B.
School Magazine, Summer 1963
There is an account of what was probably the last Old Scholars Reunion to be held at
the old school building. Several school trips are described: a cruise to Leningrad (Janette Matthews);
theatre trips (J. Astill, R. Morgan, H. Hagger and C. Jarman); and a visit to the
Commonwealth Institute (Linda Bowen). Factual prose included pieces by Derek Hughes
(Collecting Coins), Keith Baker (Fishing), G. Ellis (The School Orchestra and Choir),
Ken Carveley (The Christian Union), Graham Smith (The Explorations of Doctor
Livingstone) and E. Lock (Noise). Imaginative
prose comes from M. Houghton, R. Lockyer and C. Anastasi. Poetry was written by
Jeffrey Bamber, P. Barker, M. Bone, Gillian Cooper, M. Dudley,
Gillian Frost, L. Hammans, R. Huff, E. Hull, Nigel Jeny, R. Lockyer, C. Martin,
A. Willis and Linda Wilson.
Thanks to Christine Edwards for preserving this issue. - R.B.
School Magazine, Summer 1964
This was the last ever issue of the DCS Magazine, published just before the school
joined with the South Grove Schools. Mr.
Jaques looked back and forward in his piece, placed at the end of the printed magazine,
but here moved to the top of the first page. An outing to the World Book Fair is
described by Paul New and a voyage on the M.S. Devonia by Christine Rudd. Theresa Miles
supplements the usual accounts of the sporting year and R. Few writes about fish -
the Tench. There's an account of a production of HMS Pinafore (see the Photos pages
for some photos of this show) and K. Diver contributes a poem about the 'Little Boys
of Tott'n'm.' John Beasley describes the craft of pottery and Stephen Nyman charts the
early careers of the Rolling Stones. Other contributors are L. Hammans, P. Beattie,
Janis Marcu, Diane Whaley, Janet Anderson, Anne Murden, Elaine Chaubert, P. Sampson,
J. Bigmore, Tony Garwood, Diane Atkins, Linda Stares, Jennifer Elam and John
Once again Clive Hall preserved this issue. - R.B.
Please email us if you
can add to this collection of documents and photographs.
It has obviously not been possible to contact all the writers of the articles on these
pages to ask for permission to use their material. If you wrote
any of the pieces featured here and do not want your work to continue to appear on this site,
please email us
and we will immediately remove the piece in question. Our thanks to all the authors for
their contributions. - R.B.