"Our true intent is all for your delight." - M.N.D.
After careful consideration we have decided, this time, to deny
ourselves the pleasure and privilege of writing an editorial. No
doubt some readers will immediately raise their eye-brows and jump
to the easy conclusion that we have nothing to say. The truth is
that we have too much to say, since the Term just ending has been
crowded with interesting events which almost shriek for comment.
Editors, however, owe a duty to their contributors as well as to
themselves, and our main desire is, and has been always, to encourage
contributors as well as to disappoint as few as possible. Therefore,
as the number of articles and poems which are really worthy of a
place in our Magazine far exceeds the number of pages at our disposal,
we have felt compelled to devote every possible page to the efforts
of our enthusiastic contributors.
Before our departure, we will pause merely to make one or two essential
remarks. We must offer a hearty welcome to the new scholars who
joined us in September last; we must offer our congratulations to
those students who gained the School Leaving Certificate, and to
our Football, Cricket and Net-ball teams, which have been winning
fresh laurels in the field of sport; and we must express our appreciation
of the honour which our girls brought to the School, when, under
Miss Wraith's direction, they were chosen to give a public drill
display in the Town Hall.
And now, with sincerest wishes to all for an enjoyable Christmas
Holiday, we commend our readers to the excellent pages which follow.
We are, at the moment, considering a big prize-giving scheme
for the best story in each number. Look out for an important announcement
in our next issue. Meanwhile, begin work on your stories - NOW.
Recent Academic Successes.
We congratulate the following students who were successful in July
University of Cambridge
I - SCHOOL LEAVING CERTIFICATE
HONOURS CERTIFICATE (Carrying exemption from London Matriculation).
Ivy Fuller*; Edith Greenwood*; Grace Griffin; Constance Heslop*;
Celia Kennedy; May Moody*; Constance Oswin; Basil Blindell*†;
Reginald Brett*; Robert Forder; Harry Higgs; Thomas Lee*; Joseph
Lloyd; Charles May*; Edward Mitchell; Reginald Stokes; Edward Wischusen*†;
II - JUNIOR CERTIFICATE
6 Candidates (entered at Parents' requests) - 6 Successes
Harry Thomas* (Distinction in English)
Elsie King*; Vera Thake; Ruby Wiseman; Ralph Chappell*; John Seadon*.
* Additional Pass in Spoken French. *† Exemption from London
The following students gained prizes in the annual Essay Competition
promoted by the Tottenham Education Committee during Health Week.
Beatrice Ralls; Leslie Lambert
"And thereby hangs a tale." - The Taming of the Shrew.
That you'll have a "fed-up" time at Yule time.
That, after the School Concert, many were heard practising the
new form of "Yes, Sir."
That the age of miracles is not past, since a certain boy was late
because his clock was fast.
That girls step in where schoolboys fear to tread. (On the piano
That everyone is wondering whether the perfectly perfect boy is
still perfectly perfect.
That St. Ives is noted for cheese.
That a doctor, having felt his patient's purse, declared there
was no hope.
That, "Name of a gun!" it is by no means easy to name a gingerbread
That, at the Old Students Re-union, the "nippies" had as good a
time as the nipped.
That, in the "Excuse me" dance, the answer was - an orange!
That it takes more than one inspector to bowl out Bowler - ask
That an inclined mirror is one with ink lines drawn across it.
That LXX = Love and Kisses.
That before a singing lesson, one must breathe in slowly and then
That a new and dreadful disease known as Parkeritis which broke
out early this Term has been effectively suppressed.
That "Antic sport and blue-nosed pleasure" aptly describes a certain
football match against Walthamstow.
That a circle is just a line drawn with nothing in the middle,
or a line drawn with a space inside.
That Martin Luther did not die a natural death but was excommunicated
by a bull.
That Charles I was going to marry the Infanta of Spain. He went
to see her and Shakespeare says he never smiled again!
That the people in Iceland are called Equinoxes.
That a glazier is a man who runs down mountains.
That "Rose émue respondit" means "the pink emu laid another
A History of IVa.
By ELSIE KING (Fourth Year).
The present IVa, like every previous one of our School, has its
history. Whether the said history be glorious or otherwise I will
leave my readers, to judge for themselves at the end of this miniature
"Tout." Of course, my words have not to be digested as those of
that infamous historian, so they need not be taken too seriously.
When we, the present Fourth Years, entered the School, we were
a motley crew. We tried to appear at ease, although our knees knocked
together and our necks ached when we regarded the top form people.
We were first of all shepherded into three flocks, A, B and C. I
say "flocks" because we must have looked, as we felt, like so many
sheep. Then we were initiated into the mysteries of prefects, class
lists and conduct sheets, the last of which soon became too familiar
for our liking. We were placed in "Houses" which, to our puzzled
and innocent minds, had the astonishing names of Mangles, Willies,
Robbers and Lemons. When we drilled, we used to regard the horse
in the corner as a sort of modern rack, and indeed, after the first
week of new drill, we felt as though our poor little limbs had really
been stretched and tortured upon it. At first, we girls were terribly
frightened of the football and, instead of catching it, we used
to dodge it. Perhaps some bold little person might run to meet it
with a martyred air, but at the crucial moment her courage would
fail, and she would shrink away. If by chance the ball hit her,
she thought she was half dead. Of other new and strange subjects
which we approached in fear and trembling I will say nothing. It
was during our First Year that we saw the play "The Rivals" acted
by the old scholars. We enjoyed it very much, and dutifully said
"O-o-o-oh" when the hero said "damn."
Our Second Year was very little different from our First, except
that we had settled down to Central School life and were resigned
to our fate. During this year we first had hints given us of that
misty, vague horror known as the Cambridge Examination, but this
troubled us little, for -
"Regardless of our doom,
We little victims played";
and play we did, too! It used to be a life of "swishings," lines
and full conduct sheets, although by some strange act of Providence,
the last-mentioned generally contrived to get lost. During that
year also we started Chemistry. How we held our noses when fragrant
odours arose from smoking test-tubes held in tongs at arms-length!
With what trepidation did we pour a liquid on to a solid, and expect
it to blow up, and how disappointed we were when all that happened
was - nothing!
In Physics, one of our number told Mr. Bourne that a thermometer
was a thing with knobs on, but he would not agree, because (he said)
there was only one knob on a thermometer.
At the end of the year, we began to be impressed by the fact that
soon we would be Seniors, so we tried to mend our ways a little.
In our Third Year, we began to feel more dignified. The boys started
to wear "long 'uns," because senior boys would never think of showing
their dirty knees and holey socks. We girls were presented with
Miss Wraith's Physical Training Trophy, and consequently held our
noses so high in the air that the prefect, carrying the trophy in
triumph, failed to see the hanging cord, and upset her dignity by
tripping over it. In class we were given questions from Junior Cambridge
Papers, and thus the terrible exams loomed ominously nearer on the
horizon of our lives, especially when six of us gathered sufficient
courage to enlist for the "Junior."
When we were called to sign our names, we approached Mr. Pinchbeck's
door in fear and trembling. After several times advancing and retreating,
we made a bold dash, and faced the enemy, viz., pen and paper. Our
names were written with a series of jerks, and once outside again,
we walked slowly away with woe-begone faces. Soon afterwards, most
of us entered, and passed, the R.S.A. French examination, while
five boys won scholarships for the Hornsey School of Art. In July,
we "Junior" candidates managed to pass the examination.
Our Fourth Year started with preparations for the School's seventh
birthday. The performers practised for all they were worth, and
oh! what excruciating sounds were emitted from the Hall in dinner-hours
and evenings! However, the doleful moans from budding vocalists,
weird noises from the piano, and squeaky scrapings from the violins,
developed astonishingly into songs and violin solos. On October
1st, the concert, in our opinion, was given satisfactorily, the
sketch and "Tableau of Grimaces," given by the boys, causing even
the teachers' faces to expand into smiles of amusement.
On November 4th, we saw "Henry V" at the "Old Vic. "We could not
help admiring Henry, or laughing at Fluellen, although the gallery-er-seats
(?) were far from soft.
As regards work, it is all "swot," and "Senior Cambridge," all
day long. Miss Wilson has started a Society for the Fourth Year,
in which we dance or debate on alternate Wednesday evenings. On
the first of these we had great fun in treading upon each other's
toes, but now I am sure we could all "Charleston" without any trouble
This is our history up to Christmas, 1926, but we still have seven
more months of school-life. My wish, in closing, is that, whatever
history past IVa's have had, that of future ones will be "better
By LORNA WELLS (Third Year).
When "Refleclions" was first issued,
Long before our time,
The motto then was not the same
As now is in my rhyme.
"One farthing ev'ry week," 'twas first,
But that is now no more.
The modern motto of our Mag
Is "Better than Before."
And as we rise from Form to Form,
Our never-ending store
Of contributions to the Mag
Is "Better than Before."
And so when we have passed and gone,
As other did of yore,
Our Mag will rise from strength to strength,
Still "Better than Before."
By OLIVE BRACHER (Fourth Year). (After Addison.)
NOTE - By the word "orator" in this article is meant "chatterbox."
"Their untired lips a wordy torrent pour."
It has been said in the praise of some boys that they can talk
whole hours together upon anything; but it must be owned to the
honour of the other sex that there are many among them who can talk
whole hours together upon nothing. I have known a girl to hold forth
on the advantages of the shingle, and chide her brother for filling
her powder-box with flour (although I can't think how she noticed
the difference), in all the figures of rhetoric.
The first kind of schoolgirl orators which I shall take notice
of are those who deal in invectives, and who are commonly known
by the name of the censorious. With what a fluency of invention,
and copiousness of expression, will they enlarge upon every little
slip in the behaviour of another! With how many different circumstances,
and with what variety of phrases, will they repeat the same story!
I have known a girl make a fellow student's new dress the subject
of a month's conversation. She raved over it in one place; criticised
it in another; laughed at it in a third; coveted it in a fourth;
hated it in a fifth; and, perhaps, took the whole of a mathematics'
lesson to express her opinion of it. At length, after having quite
exhausted the subject on this side, she went to the girl herself,
praised her for her exquisite taste, and told her the sarcastic
comments which some jealous people had cast upon her dress. The
censure and approbation of this kind of schoolgirl are, therefore,
only to be considered as helps to discourse.
A second kind of schoolgirl orator may be comprehended under the
word gossip. Miss Talkapace is perfectly accomplished in this sort
of eloquence. She launches out into descriptions of dances, runs
debates on the uses and abuses of lip-stick, knows the number of
suits each boy in her class possesses, and entertains her class
mates a whole playtime with her opinions of the way Smith does his
The flapper may be looked upon as a third kind of school-girl orator.
To give herself a large field for discourse, she hates and loves
in the same breath, talks amiably to her master or mistress, is
uneasy in all kinds of weather, and in every desk in the room. She
has false quarrels with, and is under feigned obligations to all
the boys in her Form. She sighs when she is not sad, and laughs
when she is not merry. The flapper is, in particular, a great mistress
of that part of oratory which is called action, and, indeed, seems
to speak for no other purpose but that it gives her an opportunity
of stirring a limb, or varying a feature, of winking her eye, or
arranging her hair.
I have often been puzzled to assign a cause why girls should have
this talent of ready utterance in so much greater perfection than
boys, but whatever the reason, I think perhaps the Irishman's thought
was a most natural one, who, after some hours' conversation with
a schoolgirl orator, told her that he believed her tongue was very
glad when she was asleep, for that it had not a moment's rest all
the time she was awake.
The Cake Sale.
By LESLIE LAMBERT (Fourth Year).
The excitement aroused in the School when Miss Ward announced that
a Cake Sale was to be held on September 30th, can hardly be described
in words. The First Year students (bless their innocent little hearts)
wondered what in the name of goodness a cake sale really was; the
Second Years had some vague and hazy ideas about it, but were astonished
when told that they might bring pickles and jam (their own make,
of course); the Third Years were quite well-informed on the subject,
and only lamented that they could not price their goods at more
than they cost; whilst the lordly Fourth Years were elated, not
so much by the news of a cake sale, as by the prospect of a morning
off from school work to prepare the Hall.
Well, the eagerly-awaited and exciting day arrived at last, as
all days must arrive, and nothing more astonished the Staff than
the way in which all students remembered to bring their goods. "They
don't remember to bring their homework like that," sighed one. (He
couldn't possibly have been thinking of an A Form, could he, now?)
The Fourth Years almost burst with delight at being allowed to help,
and very soon the Hall and corridors were turned into one huge carpenter's
shop. There was hurrying and scurrying, and banging and laughing,
and standing back and running forward, and eager scanning of rival
stalls, and advice freely given and jokingly taken, and periodical
raids by small armies of workers on poor Mr. Oldland's sanctum,
and "winning" of pitches and blackboards, and trestles and games,
and flags and everything that could conceivably be of use in building
up a stall. But above all, there was goodwill, unbounded enthusiasm
and a splendid spirit of keen but friendly rivalry between the Houses.
By 2.30, all was ready, and in one short morning our School had
been turned into a vast fair. Then the crowds began to arrive. Our
School owes something to the generosity of fathers, mothers, and
grown-up friends who sent along such a wonderful assortment of delicacies
and then came themselves in such welcome numbers to buy. They swarmed
into the Hall, into the corridors and into the tea-room; they patronised
the mystery rooms and tried their luck at the sideshows; they bought
tickets for seemingly endless raffles and for impossible guessing
competitions; but above all, they raided the stalls with such surprising
effect that by 4.30 p.m. the four stalls which earlier in the day
had been groaning under the weight of the good things piled high
on them were completely empty. We are most anxious that parents
should know how much we appreciated their splendid support, but
we must not omit to pay tribute to the loyalty and enthusiasm of
our own youngsters, who came to School that afternoon, their pockets
bursting with money, and who spent every farthing at "The Fair"
before the day was over. Moreover, they thoroughly enjoyed themselves,
and it did one's heart good to see pastries, cakes, fruit, hot drinks,
and ices, disappearing as if by magic down scores of young throats.
This was team-work with a vengeance.
The stalls were more elaborately built and more elaborately decorated
than formerly, and when the sale began the Hall presented a very
pretty sight indeed. In fact, the whole affair was on a much bigger
and more ambitious scale than the last Cake Sale, and in consequence
the success, financially, at any rate, was proportionately greater.
All good things must come to an end, and when everything eatable
had been eaten, and every prize had been won, the many visitors
and scholars had regretfully to disperse and wend their way homeward.
It was a most enjoyable and successful afternoon, and thanks are
due, in particular, to Miss Ward, the originator of the idea and
The very satisfactory financial result was as follows:-
Wilson House £7/18/4d
Semmons House £6/11/3d
Roberts House £5/10/0d
Mandell House £5/7/2d
An Incident at the Cake Sale.
By OLIVE BRACHER (Fourth Year)
'Twas Cake Sale day at D. C. S.
Excitement, it ran high,
When all at once from Semmons' Stall
There rang a gladsome cry.
We left our games, we left our stalls,
And all was noise and clatter,
As now with one accord we ran,
To see what was the matter.
Guests and visitors, boys and girls,
And teachers one and all -
We made our way, with breathless haste,
Across to Semmons' Stall.
Then gasps were heard, and many a shout,
And cries from everyone,
When it was known a girl had found -
A currant in her bun!!!
I Don't Know.
By LEONARD STEVENS (Second Year).
IDA KNOW was a little girl. I don't know her age; I don't know
where she lived; and I don't care; but one thing I do know - if
you spoke to her she always said, "I don't know."
Now, one day, LOTT I. KNOW, IDA KNOW'S mother, mentioned that they
were going for a long holiday as soon as the schools closed. "Where
are we going?" asked the little girl. "I don't know," was the answer.
Within a few weeks the holidays began, and it was not long before
IDA KNOW found herself with her family at that famous sea-side resort,
Messway-on-Mud. On the day, following their arrival, the KNOWS decided
on a charabanc trip through the surrounding country. When they had
travelled about five miles, DASHTIF I. KNOW, IDA KNOW'S brother,
said to his father, Mr. NORDER I. KNOW, "I - -"
"I don't know," broke in his father, before he could speak.
But Mr. NORDER I. KNOW was to have no peace. Almost immediately
little cousin JUNE KNOW, pointing to a distant building, burst out,
"Whom does that belong to, uncle?"
"Oh, that's the property of our rich relation, E. KNOWS, the fruit
salt merchant," chimed in Aunt I. N. EVA KNOW, following the direction
of her daughter's glance.
The next day, Mrs. LOTT I. KNOW went out alone to look at the shops.
She was absent such a long time that the others grew anxious.
"Do you know where she's gone?" said JUNE KNOW.
"I don't know," answered IDA KNOW.
"Dashed if I know," moaned DASHTIF I. KNOW.
"Nor do I know," growled NORDER I. KNOW.
However, just as they were becoming really alarmed, Mrs. LOTT I.
KNOW returned, and after that they all enjoyed their holiday without
further incident. But the curious thing about this family was that
if ever anyone asked a question, someone was sure to say - "I don't
History of the World Summarised.
They lived; they suffered ; they died. (To be spread over thirty
lessons of one hour each.)
That Football Match.
By WILLIAM ALLEN (Fourth Year).
When the rain was pouring down, one morning in November,
We played a match on our own ground, the which I well remember.
And it drizzled!
We played the team of Walthamstow, a staunch and sturdy set;
We all went out on to the Field, and soon were very wet.
And it drizzled!
And it rained!
The field was like a quagmire, and we were soaked and cold;
For a hot drink at that moment, I'd have given untold gold.
And it drizzled!
And it rained!
And it hailed!
How heavily the ball was kicked, between the shivering players!
On hands and face and arms and knees was mud in many layers.
And it drizzled!
And it rained!
And it hailed!
And it poured!
The end we thought would never come, we were nearly washed away;
A groan arose when the referee said, "There's five more minutes
Still it drizzled!
Still it rained!
Still it hailed!
Still it poured!
At last when in the dressing room, we soon were dry and warm;
And so from that great wetting, we had no awful harm.
When it drizzled!
When it rained!
When it hailed!
When it poured!
It's said that when the sun shines, we all should make our hay,
But my advice to to footballers is, "Never, never play,
When it drizzles
When it rains
When it hails
When it pours."
"Man overboard!" yelled the skipper, "throw the buoy over quick,
Pat, seizing a passing cabin-boy, threw him into the water.
The frantic skipper: "The cork-buoy, I meant!"
Pat: "I can't help it, sir, if he belongs to Cork or Tipperary
he's gone now."
The Song of the Red Caps.
By ERNEST BISHOP (Third Year)
There is no school like D. C. S.
Where'er the light of day be;
There are no caps like our red caps
So smart and bright as they be;
There is no school like D. C. S.
Where'er the light of day be;
There are no boys like Downhills boys
Such sporty lads as they be.
And they shall work for Downhills
And reap for her success,
They'll play and beat all rivals
And win by stern prowess.
There is no school like D. C. S.
Where'er the light of day be;
There are no girls like Downhills girls
So kind and sweet as they be.
There is no school like D. C. S.
Where'er the light of day be;
There is no Staff like our Staff
So masterly as they be.
And they shall strive and struggle
To teach us all they can -
To pass examinations
And grow to play the man.
The Cake that Vanished.
Dorothy Drake, she purchased a cake,
Which she hid in a hist'ry book.
"For then it will be entirely for me,"
She said, with a Stuart look.
But then in disguise, did plump little Wise
Search it out. "All, ha! Oh, ho!"
And alas and alack! when she came back
Her cake had contrived to go!
The Geniuses of IVc.
By ONE OF THEM.
[The Editors, having carefully disguised all the names, cannot
accept responsibility for the statements (pleasant or unpleasant)
made in the following article.]
Of all the forms in the School, IVc is noted for its high-water
mark of genius. To demonstrate this, it is only necessary to mention
Runfesog the tall, and Runfam the small, who are close friends,
the poet Ihmst, the fortune-teller and scheme-promoter Immngski,
the famous mathematician Illgrawth, and the once-famous editor of
magazines Itlberg; here we have at once six of the IVc "eleven."
Runfesog is to-day renowned as our form boxing genius. At one time
in his Downhills career he had a perfect genius for getting the
cane, but, since his promotion to the Fourth Year, he has almost
ceased to give evidence of that side of his genius. Owing to his
enormous height, he finds that the youngsters of Year One "look
up" to him, and seem to expect him to set a good example; so he
has allowed all his brains to run into his fists, and, realising
his responsibility he has developed a fearsome dignity.
Runfesog's particular friend and close pal is Runfam, the small,
another popular genius whose special line is conjuring. Runfam can
hold us all spell-bound with a piece of wood. He will place it on
the bench before us, and, after distracting our attention with yards
of humorous patter, he will make a few mystic passes, and to our
amazement, the piece of wood will disappear. Then, after grinning
and bowing his acknowledgment of our laughter, he will produce it
from his pocket, and proceed to perform another trick. This, however,
is by no means the only outlet for his genius. He is also an accomplished
Of Immngski there is much to say, for he is our famous fortune-teller
and scheme promoter. He once took a glass stopper to school and
for a certain payment, he was ready to give us a very witty and,
of course uncomplimentary, account of our future. Then he invented
a scheme called the "Nulli-Secundus," which from our point of view
was very clever; but from his point of view was a failure. He promised
to give a penny to any boy who had the cane, received lines, or
lost conduct marks, and who was in his scheme; but to be in this
scheme one had to pay him a halfpenny every week regularly. Unhappily
for Immngski, our Form is so far from being an example of virtue
that very soon he found himself going bankrupt, and had to wind
up his affairs. After that, he turned his scheming mind to journalism.
He was, in fact, the first founder of a Form Magazine. He charged
a half-penny for "a read" (in School) and, strange to say, this
was a great success until other form magazines began to appear.
Then Immngski, the genius, who, although he recognised imitation
as the sincerest form of flattery, had no liking for competition,
sold his editorship to two other shining literary lights, Itlberg
and Degeh; but they also ceased their laborious efforts after producing
a few numbers.
About this time, Ihmst and Illgrawth (an editor of a magazine)
came into IVc. They were welcomed, for Ihmst and Illgrawth were
both geniuses; Ihmst as a poet, Illgrawth as a mathematician, Ihmst
immediately showed us some of his poems, which even Immngski admitted
were "pretty good." Included among them was a poem called "Immngski,"
which Ihmst rather wished he had not written when Immngski chased
him all round the School, and finally caught him. Illgrawth's genius
we did not discover until we found that he did two sums to our one,
and got them both correct.
Lr.McNne also is a genius in the way he makes up new French words
and forgets the original ones; but now his genius takes the form
of beating us all hollow at history. Not so long ago, his name could
generally be found at the bottom.
Igor is a genius of many parts. How he manages to get full marks
for conduct always puzzles us. His genius also reveals itself in
his ability at woodwork and metal-work. This side of his genius
is recognised to such an extent that a certain mistress once even
condescended to give Igor the honour of making her an ash-tray.
Ilwes's genius takes the form of dodging all work, especially homework,
whilst Tprta, in contrast, has a wonderful genius for getting more
work than anyone else.
Readers will have discovered that I, also, am a genius in that
I have managed to write this clever and illuminating article without
giving myself away. It will be seen, therefore, that Downhills Central
School has reason to be proud of its IVc in which every boy is a
The Dancing Lesson.
By HARRY THOMAS (Fourth Year).
With steady step the ranks advance
To take their partners for the dance.
The serried band upon the floor -
Its heart is light, its feet are sore,
For useless now are Russian boots
And, all in vain, the warning hoots
Against the mighty force of man
Who kicks and treads where'er he can.
The one-step they attempt at first
And then for more the boys do thirst.
Soon afterwards, all flushed and hot,
They try a waltz and slow fox-trot.
The gramophone's shrill plaintive bleats
Incite their feet to further feats.
Now see them dance the Gordon Gay!
With four steps - turn - the same each way!
A twist - a turn - and then a glide
With quick step round the Hall they slide.
The Flying Boston then they try,
And round and round the Hall they fly,
With "Look out there!" and "0h, my nose!"
"Good gracious me! You've hurt my toes!"
But when the whistle sounds, "Cease fire,"
Those gallant damsels we admire;
For though their limbs are stiff and sore
They still pretend they'd like some more.
When on the morrow lessons call
And they all troop in to the Hall,
'Sembly and lessons dull do seem
For of that time they sit and dream.
It's a hard life most of the time, nowadays. Bob lends Jack some
money so that Jack can lend it to Bill so that Bill can pay Bob
some of what he owes him. See?
The Cookery Centre.
By H. KIMMINGS (Fourth Year.)
The Cookery Centre happens to be next door to our Form-room, and
many are the delicious odours that steal through the door to our
nostrils. For instance, the other day, when we were all deeply absorbed
in the puzzles of mathematics, a delightful smell of burnt kippers
was wafted through the door. Heroically, we stood it for a time,
until the teacher in charge made an excuse to leave, presumably
for fresh air. As soon as we were left to ourselves, pandemonium
reigned, and there was a wild rush for the open windows; all fighting
for air. However, after a time the smell became less pungent, and
gradually ceased to trouble us. I suppose the girl in charge of
the kippers suddenly realised that they were burning. Now and again
our nostrils are assailed by some really alluring odours, such as
that of toast. This smell is so enticing that to tease us with the
knowledge that the toast is so near and yet not for us, amounts
almost to cruelty to young children. In my case, my mouth waters,
and I begin crunching the crisp toast (in my imagination) the moment
I sniff the odour.
On some days there is no cooking in the Cookery Centre, but washing,
and that, perhaps, is worse. The girls are certainly very energetic,
but I, for one, wish they were not, and I am sure all the boys in
my Form have the same feeling. First of all, to start the ball rolling,
we hear a rumbling noise like distant thunder which, from experience,
I have come to know is caused by the girls rubbing the clothes on
the washing-boards. After this preliminary, our Form-room (which,
as I have said, is next door) is invaded by a dense mist. It is
so thick at times that the boy sitting next to me looks like a ghostly
spectre. We cough and cough as the mist gets down our throats, until,
just as we are feeling desperate, to our intense relief the mist
clears off, and normal air is restored.
One day - oh! how I do regret that day! - I was strolling by the
Cookery Centre, warbling like a lark and full of the joy of Spring,
when the door opened and out came a girl with a dish of pastries
in her hands. Feeling rather hungry at the time, I glanced covertly
at the cakes, and the kind young lady, noticing my eager glance,
took pity on me and offered me one. Ah, me! Like a poor misguided
youth, I took the seemingly dainty confection, and - lo and behold!
- after eating it, I turned a sickly yellow! That cake was black
on one side and white on the other; the middle was soft and sloppy
like a piece of wet dough. Before I ate the cake I was a joyful
and lively boy of mirth, but within a few moments of devouring it,
that terrible, indescribable feeling came over me, and I crept away,
broken in spirit and a physical wreck. In the afternoon I visited
my doctor, who ordered me to be put to bed for the rest of that
week. Never again shall I taste a cake baked by a Downhills Central
Now take warning from me, you young and innocent lambs of Year
One. Do not cultivate a taste for toast; do not put yourselves in
the way of burnt kippers; never let a girl take pity on you; and,
above all, do not blight your lives by eating a Downhills Central
How I wish - oh-h! I can feel that pain returning. It is the clinging
memory of that cake - I - can write no more!
The School Birthday.
The usual interesting and exciting events marked the seventh School
Birthday which we celebrated on October 1st. The morning was devoted
to a review of the year's work by our esteemed Headmaster, Mr. F.
O. Pinchbeck, B.A., and to speeches by Councillor Elderfield and
Mr. A. J. Linford, B.Sc. (Director of Education for Tottenham).
The morning's programme also included several songs charmingly rendered
by girls of the Third and Fourth Years.
In the afternoon came the eagerly awaited Fourth Year concert,
which has now become a welcome and established feature of the School
Birthday celebrations. This year, the boys saw to it that the deficiencies
of last year were remedied, and right well did they acquit themselves.
Altogether, it was a most enjoyable concert, and at the end of the
day everyone went home feeling happy but sorry it was over. Thanks
are due to Miss Haas, who was responsible for the singing in the
morning, and who worked hard with the Fourth Year students to make
the concert so great a success.
The Shield and Banner Competitions have this year been very keen
and, as may be seen from the following tables, only half a point
separates the winner in each case from the runner-up. Such keen
but friendly rivalry between the Houses is very healthy for the
School, and we have much pleasure in congratulating Mandall (winners
of the Shield) and Wilson (winners of the Banner).
The Days of Yore.
By E. WICKHAM (Fourth Year).
'Twas many, many years ago
That monsters roamed these lands
When grisly beasts did chase and slay
And mammoths roamed in bands.
Man had but little chance those days
To earn a goodly living,
But such a thing as "out of work"
Was then quite unexisting.
There was not such a thing as "law"
For man could kill and steal
And even eat his enemies
To make a goodly meal.
No child did ever run to school
Lest he should he there late:
But chased the many animals.
Or fled - at any rate.
Perhaps 'twas good, perhaps 'twas bad;
At best we cannot say;
And yet I'd rather work today
Than in those days to play.
The Snowflakes and the Stars.
By LORNA WELLS (Third Year).
From their home in leaden skies,
The whirling snowflakes fall
On high church spire and cottage roof,
On lane and garden wall.
A pall of pure white snow they lie
On forest, field and town,
At frosty night from deep blue sky
The twinkling stars peep down.
Below them spreads the wide, white world,
Lying without motion:
Whilst here and there, between the white,
Is seen the silver ocean.
The Senior Football Team.
By H. THOMAS (Fourth Year).
Some say that Seniors can't play games,
Or hit the mark they aim at;
But probably these do not know,
What we have won our fame at.
Yet I and lots of other boys
Can say with ample reason
The Seniors in their element are,
When Football is in season.
The hard-fought game which others funk
The Seniors hail with zest,
With boots, socks, shorts, and jerseys
In sporting rig we are dressed.
Each boy does do his uttermost;
Each swifter than the swallow;
We play the game with ne'er a slip,
And beat all others hollow.
Thoughts on Armistice Day, 1926.
By STEPHANIE WELLS (Fourth Year).
| In Flanders' fields the scarlet poppies grow,
'Midst vast green fields and crosses do they blow;
Who knows what warrior 'neath those flowers may sleep,
What hearts in England still for him may weep?
They lie at rest - the brown earth is their bed
Beneath the poppies, that with tilted head
Remind us of the brave and honoured men
And of the tribute that we owe to them.
How It's Done.
By HILDA WENDLAND (Second Year).
I don't know
It's such a fag
To make up poetry
For the Mag.
For hours I sit
And try to think
Till my head splits
And my eyes blink
I sit and sit -
At last I doze -
Then the words fit
Why? Who knows?
"The play's the thing...." - Hamlet.
By WINNIE BOWERS (Fourth Year).
THE CUP RETURNS TO DOWNHILLS.
The season just ended, which culminated in the restoration to Downhills
of the coveted Cup, has been both enjoyable and highly successful.
We were able to run two teams, one in the Central Schools League,
and one in the Tottenham Schools League; and we have reason for
THE TOTTENHAM SCHOOLS LEAGUE.
It is with just pride that our girls reflect upon their achievements
in the Tottenham League. At first, there were difficulties. Since
not one of last year's players was young enough for this Season,
we had to build up an entirely new team, and, of course, a suitable
goalkeeper could not be found. (Juniors, please note!)
However, although we started with an uncertain team in our first
match against Belmont (away), we won. Small changes, naturally,
had to be made as the Season progressed, but, as will be seen from
the Result Table given below, we lost only two matches out of the
thirteen played. So, when the Season drew to a close, we found that
we had fought our way to the top of our division, and then came
the great tussle with Coleraine Park (top of the other division)
to decide who were to be the cup-holders. The match was played on
neutral ground at Risley Avenue on September 22nd, and it proved
to be a keen and hard-fought contest. Perhaps we owed our success
to the deadly shooting of Doris South and Lena Maylett, but every
girl played her part with fine fervour and spirit, and when the
end came, we felt that we deserved our victory. It goes without
saying that to our trainer, Miss N. Wraith, we owe everything, but
we are sure she knows how much we appreciate her untiring efforts.
THE TOTTENHAM LEAGUE TEAM. - Lena Maylett, Doris South, Margery
Colombo, Phyllis Reed, Doris Hildyard, Margery Graham, Winnie Bowers
CENTRAL SCHOOLS LEAGUE.
For the first time in the history of the School we joined the London
Central Schools League, in which we have played three matches out
of six. We started with a crushing defeat at Barnsbury Park, but
as a result of some good hard practice and the timely appearance
of a mascot, we managed to win the last of the matches, i.e., against
Tollington Park. We have the return matches to play on our own ground,
where, with the support of the School, we hope to win.
We experienced great sorrow at having to separate our time-honoured
defences - E. Catchpole and O. Bracher - but it was found that the
former was required as a shooter. Again, a goalkeeper could not
be found, and the team has had to be altered for each match; yet
still is not giving Miss Wraith satisfaction. However, we are by
no means downhearted, and we hope before long to be able to give
as good an account of ourselves as the Tottenham League team.
CENTRAL LEAGUE TEAM. - Edith Catchpole, Ruby Wiseman, Gladys Turner,
Irene Cornish, Phyllis Reed, Olive Bracher, and Winnie Bowers (Captain).
As before, we have this season been able to enter both the Central
Schools League and the Tottenham Schools League. The team playing
in the former League made rather a bad beginning, but when its members
had found their feet, they began to give quite a creditable account
of themselves. As a result, all the later matches (as may be seen
from the table below) have been victories, and we do not despair
of holding quite a high place in the league table at the end of
Two matches stand out and deserve special mention. We were very
proud of our victory over North Walthamstow, since they were an
unbeaten team. It was a gruelling game, for both sides struggled
manfully right up to the end. The other match to be mentioned is
that against South Walthamstow. No boy who played in that match
will ever forget it. The rain poured down in torrents; it was bitterly
cold; the ground was like a quagmire; and when the game was abandoned
after twenty minutes, each boy looked as if he had been indulging
in a mud-bath. But we enjoyed it, and won by eight goals
Thomas, Bullamore, Pugh and Longcluse, have had the honour of being
chosen as probable players in N.E. Section v. W. Section (London)
Match, which takes place in January. We may add, further, that (at
the trial) Pugh was regarded by the Selection Committee as the best
half-back on the field.
Of the Junior (Tottenham) team there is little to report. Only
two matches have so far been played, and both were victories. No
doubt by the time the next issue of "Reflections" is ready there
will be a longer story to tell.
CENTRAL SCHOOLS LEAGUE (Senior Team)
TOTTENHAM LEAGUE (Junior Team)
Pressure on our space forbids any lengthy account of a very successful
swimming season. We regret that we can do no more than express our
appreciation of a very enjoyable Gala held on September 23rd, and
give the following particulars of points won and certificates gained.
HOUSE POINTS AT THE GALA.
15 yds, girls...19
25 yds, boys...19
50 yds, girls...8
100 yds, boys...20
220 yds, girls...2
¼ mile, girls...2; boys...11
½ mile, girls...2; boys...4
1 mile, girls...2; boys...5
Total certificates...girls: 35; boys:59 Total...94
OLD SCHOLAR'S SECTION
An Open Letter to Old Students.
DEAR OLD STUDENTS,
With one more year of busy work, and (shall we say?) busier play
throwing its shadow behind us, we may pause awhile to "take it and
try its worth" in the approved style. Since this little journal
is concerned solely with the woes and joys of our Alma Mater, however,
we are concerned solely in this letter with the affairs of old students,
and from this view-point 1926 has been very successful.
The number of subscribers to the Magazine is steadily increasing
- we can place nearly 150 subscribers against the 80 of last year;
but financially we are still on the debit side. We appeal to those
of our members who are already loyally supporting us to introduce
new subscribers if possible. The introduction is all we need; "Reflections"
can be relied upon to maintain the acquaintance.
We should also welcome contributions for publication from old scholars.
At present these are few and far between.
An outstanding event of the year was the Staff Dance held on November
27th. This was organised especially for Old Scholars, and the demand
for tickets was so great that sales had to be stopped. After a thoroughly
enjoyable evening over 150 Old Scholars joined hands and voices
to the strains of Auld Lang Syne. In view of this encouraging response
the Staff is hoping to organise an annual reunion about Christmas
Now, since time and tide wait for no man, and space and the printers
are equally unaccommodating, we must make our adieu. Like Scrooge,
we may look back on unsuccessful Christmases; we may look forward
with mingled hopes and fears to Christmas future; but Christmas
present is with us - jovial, hearty, rosy-cheeked, and we cannot
do better than bid you join him, and wish you heartiest enjoyment
in his company.
By LESLIE OWEN (Hon. Sec. O.S.A.)
When we look back, it seems but yesterday that the O.S.A. was first
founded. The memory of those pioneer meetings is still fresh, but
time has passed quickly, and the O.S.A. has grown.
I can truthfully say that the first session of this year has been
pleasing; September saw a fresh batch of old students enrolled,
and since then, all the meetings have been well attended.
The Dramatic Society has started rehearsing, and hopes to be soon
ready to stage its "revival Show." I understand that a few members
are required to take minor parts, and if there are any enthusiasts
who care to "start at the bottom," then Mr. A. Latimer would be
pleased to hear from them.
The "girls," if one may now be permitted to title them thus, have
again started their Gym, with, I understand, very pleasing results.
They have also formed a Net-ball Club, and have joined a league,
and so have a pretty full fixture list. I hear that the result of
their first game was rather disappointing, but I am sure that such
a set-back will not discourage them. Any members who are interested
should apply to Miss W. Lane, 108, Hampden Road, N.8.
The weekly meetings have been well attended, as usual, and the
monthly meetings have also passed off much better than before.
The dances, too, I am pleased to report, have been much better
supported than usual, and those already held havebeen very successful
functions from every point of view. In this connection, thanks are
due to the caretaker, Mr. Colman, for his invaluable assistance
in decorating the Hall, etc., and also to the Committee and other
members who have assisted.
In conclusion, I must, of course, wish all old students the merriest
of Christmases and the brightest of bright New Years. The older
members are looking forward to the rest that this holiday brings;
while the younger ones will, no doubt, devote part of this time
to thinking over their first experiences of "business life"; and
I am sure that, on due reflection, they will wish they were back
at school again.
Voices from Afar.
A Motoring Adventure in India.
By FRANK CACKETT (1921-25)
One Saturday morning, when things were rather dull, my friend at
work turned suddenly to me and announced that he was off that afternoon
to Poona to fetch a car which had been given to him. Scenting possible
adventure, I offered to accompany him and, as soon as the morning's
work was done we hurried home, secured a few necessities, and caught
the Punjab Mail to Poona. The rail journey from Nasik (where I live)
to Poono, is perhaps one of the most interesting in the world -
especially during a monsoon. The train, ascending the mountains
slowly and painfully, crosses many suspended bridges and passes
through many tunnels. All the time, the scenery is of surpassing
beauty. Water thunders down, down, down - over moss-covered stones
and through deep gorges into a main stream far below. Tall palms
stand out above thick foliage of cactus and banyan. On all sides
the mountains rise in lofty masses, till they seem to touch the
sky. All is wonderful. We pass through a series of winding cuttings
and again through a few tunnels, and all sense of direction is lost.
We arrived safely at Poona, and after spending the night with some
of my friend's relatives, we set out on the return journey on the
following day (Sunday), soon after twelve. The distance to be covered
before night-fall was roughly one hundred and twenty miles, and
the car, I might add, had not been used for over three months! However,
my friend, fortunately, was something of a genius with cars, and
after a little trouble he managed to set the thing going.
The first thirty odd miles, during which we crossed a river by
passing through a road under it, were fairly smooth and uneventful.
Then we began to ascend the Peth Ghat. We had hardly reached the
Peth plateau when we experienced our first tyre-burst. This detained
us for about three- quarters of an hour, but at length we set out
again, and continued, passing a village called Narajangaon (pronounced
nothing like it is spelt), until at about 3.15 p.m. we came to a
dead stop. There in front of us was a river with no bridge, no road
under it, and a ferry which was not working. The river at this point
was about seventy-five yards wide. At the moment of our arrival
a large passenger 'bus was about to cross from the other side. With
a rush, it entered the water, but very soon it stuck. About a dozen
coolies had been hired to assist in coaxing the 'bus across, and
these, after the most strenuous efforts, managed little by little
to push and pull the 'bus through the water. The operation, however,
took an hour at least. At one time the 'bus made no headway at all
for about twenty minutes, and I began to think it was permanently
stuck fast in the bed of the river.
Meanwhile, my friend had waded out to get into touch with the coolies.
He offered one of the coolies a rupee (about eighteen-pence) if
he would persuade the others to push our car across for two rupees.
Indians, you may be surprised to know, are very independent, and
although these men had received only two rupees between them for
an hour's hard work with the 'bus, they refused to help us for the
same sum. At length, we were forced to give them five rupees which
was ill-spent, since our car passed through the river in about fifteen
minutes, and almost on its own power.
It was then necessary to clean the car and again repair the burst
tyre with a piece of the car's floor-covering, which was all we
had. In consequence, it was 5 o'clock before we again set out. We
were about seventy miles from home at this point.
With a few stops at toll-houses, we rushed on, my friend driving
and I counting the milestones and calling out every now and again:
"Only fifty miles more to go!" Our way here lay over the Ghats,
and when we reached the summit the descent was really wonderful.
With a sheer drop of seventy feet on one side, and a steep embankment
on the other, with numerous blind corners and hairpin bends, the
road came down and down into the plain below. A long, smooth run
carried us into Sangamner, thirty-six miles from Nasik. We stopped
for petrol, rigged up one good light with the aid of a penknife,
and set out on our final stretch at about 6.30 p.m. We crossed many
more ghats, and when about twenty-five miles from home, darkness,
as in the Far East, came upon us with the suddenness of a dropping
At about 8.30 p.m. we had another tyre-burst. The floor-covering
which we had used had been completely worn through. It took us about
an hour to put things right (using more floor-mat), and soon after
10 p.m. we reached Nasik railway station - only to find the level
crossing gates closed. Nothing is more disheartening to motorists,
especially after a long and fatiguing journey, than a closed level-crossing.
However, after a short delay we were able to pass, and we arrived
home at about 10.30 p.m. and found a good dinner awaiting us.
Considering that the car had not been in use for over three months,
and that we were detained by tyre trouble for about two hours, and
again about two hours by the river, Ido not think the journey was
a bad performance - especially when I reveal the fact that the car
was a Ford! It was really a very interesting and, at times, exciting
journey, and in spite of all the mishaps I enjoyed it very much.
Launcelot in London.
By G. H. CARPENTER (1919-23).
Out of Waterloo Station, over Westminster Bridge, and up Whitehall,
strode a tall, khaki-clad young man with a long stride and a pensive
With him came a breath of fresh air from remote corners of old
rural England - a breath of which stirred the blackened leaves on
London's trees, and caused the horses of the Guards opposite the
War Office to stir ever so slightly, as memories of their young
days crowded on them.
And when we add that this young man, nevertheless, seemed quite
at home in London, and that his features retained their habitual
appearance of grim simplicity, our readers will, of course, instantly
perceive that this was Launcelot.
"I say, soldier!" someone shouted.
Launcelot looked round in surprise. "Yes," he answered.
"Are you from Aldershot?"
"Well, perhaps you can help me..."
The stranger was a thin, unhealthy-looking young man, dressed in
the jaunty fashion that is the hall-mark of the young bloods of
Bow and Battersea.
Launcelot regulated his pace to fit with that of his companion,
and listened attentively to the latter's tale of woe.
It appeared that the stranger was a corporal in the Hussars and
was stationed at a convalescent home at Colchester. He had that
day ridden into London by motor-cycle, and had had the machine smashed
up in an accident at Mile End. He had now no money left, and could
not get back. As he was awaiting discharge with a disability pension,
a prolonged absence might mean a serious financial loss, as well
as the inconvenience of walking back to Colchester.
"I have half-a-crown," said Launcelot, simply.
"Well," said the stranger, after some thought. "I could cable to
my father at Harwich, and get him to send me the money for my fare."
"How much would the wire cost?"
Launcelot looked mildly surprised. "How very fortunate!" he murmured.
"I have just two-and-six."
"If you could do this for me," pleaded the stranger, "I should
never forget it. And perhaps one day I might be able to....."
But Launcelot looked embarrassed by this expression of gratitude.
His glance wandered down to the stranger's gloves.
"Well," he pronounced, "I am due at the War Office at eleven. If
I lend you the money, can I see you there at eleven-thirty?"
"Certainly. I can be back by a quarter past."
Launcelot produced the half-crown, and the stranger prepared to
utter his thanks.
"First of all, however," murmured Launcelot, "give me your gloves.
I shall keep them as a token of good faith."
Very unwillingly, but with a fair show of good grace, the stranger
handed over the gloves, and received the half-crown.
At eleven-thirty, Launcelot stood outside the War Office. But where
was the stranger? Ah, where?
Launcelot walked to the nearest pawnshop, having first sworn a
mighty oath that should he see that stranger again -!!
The pawnbroker shook his head. "Gloves are of no use to us," he
said. "If you have a watch or a ring, now.. "
"Sorry," said Launcelot. "Couldn't manage any of those to-day."
"Get out of my shop!" cried the man, in terror.
"Idiot," growled Launcelot, and went.
On the West-bound train from Waterloo, Launcelot, sitting moodily
in the corner of the carriage, pulled out the gloves once more and
glared at them.
"No cigarettes for the rest of the week." he reflected.
He turned them over and examined them critically, and then, looking
out of the window, seemed inclined to throw them forth. Struck by
a sudden thought, however, he began to try them on. His hands, much
too large for them, pulled them taut. He smiled, and gave the right
glove a sudden pull.
"Great Shakespeare!" he muttered, as his fingers touched a piece
of crisp paper. "What's this? A note? Oh - ten bob!"
The following day, a sadly-smiling youth presented St. Dunstan's
By GEORGE CARPENTER (1919-23)
Beside a racing, hissing stream,
Between a bed of roses and a hill,
On a couch of down and thorns,
'Neath the ever-dreaming dome
Of the Beyond,
There lies a youth,
With wide eyes waiting -