- Page 72 - Mar thru May 2013 -
- Page 72 - Mar thru May 2013 -
Lack of space prevents our including the following
items on the main News Page, but here are some interesting
events/comments from the past several months.
John Philipps (JRGS 1953-58) recalls life at the school and the late Alan Murray...
came across The Mill alumni site, which I read with
great interest, especially
John Phillips, Lewisham, South East London, May 2013 Email
Peter Townsend (JRGS 1947-54) reports on a chance alumnus meeting...
I thought that the
alumni might be interested in one of those odd happenings in life that
occurred to me today.
Incidentally, I am currently recovering from a hip replacement on May 16, and out of the original pain - just sore now with a swollen leg, and on crutches.
Dr. Peter J. Townsend, Hatch End, Pinner, Middlesex, May 2013 Email
Paul Graham (JRGS 1959-66) adds: To add to the coincidence, although I cannot claim to be a close acquaintance of Dr. Stephen Vaughan-Smith, I do know of him through my 20 years working at Denham, where he and his family live. But I had no idea he was an ex-JR pupil, and I doubt he realised I was.
Mike Etheridge (JRGS 1963-65)
adds: I note from Peter's recollections
that he has just had a hip replacement. Just over a year ago I was told
I needed my right hip replaced but I think due to lack of funding at
Mayday (Croydon University) Hospital, and the fact that I was not in
extreme pain, the hospital registrar decided to delay the operation.
However, my hip seems to be getting worse, as expected, and I must soon
consult my doctor about the situation.
Karl W. Smith (JRGS 1946-51) adds:
With reference to Peter Townsend's comments above about gas-powered
vehicles, the attached pages come from a vintage copy of Our Croydon,
a council publication circa 1947. Clearly it was attributed to the
Croydon Times but I don't know if it was ever published in the
Click on either thumbnails to view larger images.
The book Our Croydon, subtitled inside as
"The Organisation and Activities of The Corporation of Croydon,"
actually belonged to my parents. The publisher would appear to be the
Corporation itself; it was printed by The Galleon Press, Sydenham Road,
Croydon. The origin says: "Town Hall, Croydon, 1947," price was one
shilling. There is a foreword by the Mayor, H. Regan, that is dated
December 1946, but no author is cited.
Paul Rayner (JRGS 1960-66) fondly recalls school life in the Sixties and beyond...
we were talking with friends about school mottos. I could not recall
Ruskin’s for the life of me – no doubt the bottle of red wine I had
consumed did not help. Anyway, I Goggled the JRGS Alumni web page and
read John Byford's
Memories entry and, noticing that I rated a mention in the section
on sixth-form favourites, felt I should contact him.
Paul Rayner, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, May 2013 Email
1959-66) adds: Paul's account includes a timely mention of
Crystal Palace FC who, for the fourth time in a decade, are in the
playoffs for the English Premier League. Their semifinal opponents are
bitter rivals Brighton and Hove Albion; the matches, over two legs, are
at Selhurst Park and Brighton's AMEX Stadium on the 10th and 13th of
David Anderson (JRGS 1964-71) adds: I can recall the school
motto after 42 years - but can't recall some much more recent things
though! "Age Quod Agis," I think, on the blazer badge. I never knew what
it meant. Google says: "Do What You Do Well" or something similar.
Karl W. Smith (JRGS Tamworth
Road 1946-51) adds: Age Quod Agis - if my memory is
correct. Not sure about the spelling, "Agis" or "Aegis"? Must have a
look at my old school cap.
Terry Procter (JRGS 1953-59) adds: I seem to remember the school motto was AGE QUOD AGIS - Do what you do - but please correct me if I am wrong.
Mike Marsh (JRGS 1949-55) adds: The motto was Age Quod Agis, I believe!
Karl Smith (JRGS 1946-51) recalls more memories of school life in the Fifties...
I am still finding
snippets of JRGS news that I’ve previously missed. Having read Terence
Morris’ comments on our
photo - I’m one of those who appeared in the rear row - I can
confirm that the Woodwork Room was definitely NOT the Library; they were
adjacent along one side of the Gym that was ruled over by the late
Mr. C. E.
Smith. At the back of the Gym was, originally, a second playground area
that became the home of the precast concrete Biology & Chemistry Lab
Karl W. Smith. CEng., FRAeS, Heckington, Lincolnshire April 2013 Email
As a keen plane aficionado - my father worked as toolmaker for a
supplier to the
aircraft industry, at one time fabricating critical parts for the
ill-fated British Aircraft Corporation TSR2 and later the BAC Concord -
I was fascinated to read that Avro Vulcan XH558 returned to flight on
18th October, 2007, following an award-winning restoration programme. As
the last airworthy Vulcan, the aircraft returned to the air-display
circuit in 2008 and, reportedly, has been a crowd pleaser ever since.
Etheridge (JRGS 1963-65) adds: The book Vulcan 607 by
Rowland White describes the Falklands' attack code-named "Black Buck" by
Avro Vulcans on the Port Stanley airfield and, of course, details the number
of Victor tankers involved. I have the book in front of me but cannot
find the relevant page that describes the total number of planes
involved in the first attack, but it may have been up to 14.
1945-53) adds: I have just read about Karl Smith and his
memories at JRGS. From the Sixth Form photo, I am sure that I met up
with him in 1953 at Battersea CAT, as it was known in those days. He was
a dab hand at keeping my Cucciolo motor (on my bicycle) going.
I recall a few names from the past. When I first went to JRGS the head
boy/school captain was Norman Baldock, who took holy orders, as
did Owen Everson and Anthony Nye. Was there something
special about RE at our old school, I wonder?
David Anderson (JRGS 1964-71) adds: I
note that our webmaster is interested in aeroplanes; he may be interested
in the following.
Tony Hollands (JRGS 1952-58) recalls a Sputnik prank from the Fifties...
Further to mention in
these pages by JRGS teacher Derek Peasey regarding a "very
sputnik made by sixth formers," all I know is that following the
launch of sputnik by the Soviets [in October 1957], some of the Upper
Sixth decided to put up a "satellite" to cash into the then-current
media obsession with space exploration.
Tony Hollands, Longframlington, Northumberland, March 2013 Email
Phil Cowlam (JRGS 1951-58) adds: It wasn't a "Sputnik."
According to The Daily Telegraph, it was a shiny 'Russian Rocket"
about 9-foot long with CCP and a Hammer & Sickle insignia, a long
aerial, all carefully made up in the JRGS metalwork shop by a group of
conspirators. It had a flashing "bleep" and circuit board purchased from
Proops, with its own parachute - all of which carefully laid on Mitcham
Common over some bushes. Scattered Russian notes - printed on the
school's Adana Press - demanded that it be returned to the Soviet
Peter Oxlade (JRCS 1940-44) reports on the health of ex-head Bill Patterson...
I have been aware that for several years
William Patterson, a former headmaster of John Ruskin Grammar
School from 1973 to 1990, has been suffering with Alzheimer's disease.
Like so many others with this problem, Bill forgets peoples' names,
places and many other things that used to be taken so much for granted.
Peter Oxlade, Shirley, Surrey, March 2013 Email
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