JRGS News Archive Page 62
JRGS Alumni Society

Archived News/Activities

- Page 62 - June 2010 -

JRGS Alumni Society


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 Jackaman (JRGS 1949-51) recalls his schooldays and military career...

I recently came across a JRGS School Christmas Play Program dated 1949, a scanned copy of which is shown below. The cast of The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde included familiar names of fellow students in the upper-sixth, including Owen Everson, Anthony Nye and Derek Howes. Click on any thumbnail to view a larger version.
   With these basic names I was able to search on the Web and found The Mill JRGS Alumni Society with further information about my former school mates. I was delighted to learn that many of my contemporaries did extremely well in their future lives.

1950 Christmas Play - page 1 1950 Christmas Play - page 2 1950 Christmas Play - page 3

   I joined JRGS in 1949 and entered the lower-sixth from Heath Clark Central School. I moved on to the upper-JRGS Second-XI football teamsixth form in 1950 and was appointed captain of my house and vice-captain of the school. I left JRGS [with A-levels in geography and history] and decided to do my national service before going on to further education. After completing my national service I emigrated to Canada and finally decided to make the military my career. I retired in 1987 after 36 years of service.
   I am pictured right as a member of the JRGS 1949-50 Second-XI football team - I'm the young fair-haired chap standing on the far right.
   My future wife, Joan M. Horton, was captain of Heath Clark School and a friend of Wendy Heath, Peter Heath's sister. Sadly, our move to Canada meant that we lost contact with many of our school friends.
   One person may be of interest to others is Vera Garwood, the JRGS school secretary at that time. She married her submarine commander, who joined the Canadian Navy, so Vera ended up in Victoria BC, Canada. We saw her quite regularly as her husband came to the officer training school as a reviewing officer from time to time. Sadly, Vera died of cancer many years ago.

John Jackaman - 2010 John Jackaman - 1950
 2010  1950

 I am now into my 22nd year of retirement and active as a ham-radio operator in emergency communications for my local city and Fraser Valley Regional District. Unfortunately, since my wife is now very disabled with Parkinson's Disease and an associated dementia, I am also busy as a full-time caregiver. However. we continue to enjoy life here in beautiful British Columbia.
   It is quite amazing that our school produced so many successful young men in a broad variety of disciplines. I know that in my own case my basic British education provided a sound foundation for my subsequent career. School uniforms, a house system and prefectorial duties all provided leadership training that appears to be lacking in modern comprehensive schools.
   On the other hand, my three Canadian children did not do too badly either. All were educated in a variety of Canadian and American schools, all are all university-educated and have successful businesses of their own. Four of my grandchildren are at university and college with one still at high school in South Africa.
   I have a web page, built by myself and my eldest son. Not every wife would allow her back yard to be filled with antenna towers but Joan is very understanding. See other pictures that show what a beautiful area we live in.
   I have also located a copy of the school photo taken in 1950, which I scanned in four sections. The left-hand section shows the upper sixth and includes photos of Nye, Heath and Everson, the school captain at that time. I am located to the right of the staff as a member of the lower-sixth form, as shown above, right.

Military Service, October 1951 to December 1987
Born and educated in London, Lieutenant-Colonel (Rtd) J. E. Jackaman, OMM, CD, commenced his military career in the Royal Air Force, receiving his pilot's wings in December 1952 and subsequently completed training as a day fighter pilot. In 1954 he emigrated to Canada and joined the Royal Canadian Air Force. After a period of refresher training he was posted to 425 AW(F) Squadron. After four years as an All-Weather Fighter Pilot he was posted to 14 Aircraft Control and Warning squadron as a Fighter Weapons Controller. In 1960, he attended RCAF Staff School and was posted to the Central Experimental Proving Establishment as a Test and Acceptance Pilot on the CF104 Starfighter Programme. During his four years as a Test Pilot he qualified on all the major jet fighter aircraft in the RCAF inventory at that time.
   In 1965 he became a flying instructor in Tutor Aircraft at No 1 FTS, Gimli, Manitoba. Three years later, by then a Major, he was posted to the Central NORAD Region Headquarters, Richard Gebaur AFB, Kansas City, Missouri. During his tour as a staff officer in the Semi-Automatic Ground Environment Division, he qualified as a USAF Instructor Pilot on the T39 Sabreliner and T33 aircraft. In 1969 Major Jackaman was appointed Chief Standards Officer of the Canadian Forces Officer Candidate School, Chilliwack, and subsequently was appointed Deputy Commandant.
   In 1973 he attended the Canadian Forces Staff College and, on graduation, commenced training at the Combat Arms School in preparation for his appointment in army aviation as Operations Officer of 427 Tactical Helicopter Squadron, Petawawa, Ontario. He later served as Deputy Commanding Officer of the Squadron before his appointment as Commanding Officer of CFS Kamloops, BC. In 1978 he was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel and returned to 427 Squadron as Commanding Officer.
   In June 1980 he commenced a three-year tour as the Commanding Officer of the Canadian Forces Training Team providing support to the Ghana Armed Forces Staff College in Accra. In June 1983 Lieutenant-Colonel Jackaman was appointed by Her Majesty The Queen to be an Officer of the Order of Military Merit and returned to Canada to take up his final appointment as Base Administration Officer, CFB Comox. He retired in 1987.
   During his 36 years of military service he enjoyed a broad variety of flying jobs, qualified in over 20 different aircraft types and completed more than 5,000 flying hours. In addition to many ground appointments, he was also privileged to command a Station, a Helicopter Squadron and an Overseas Training Team.
  Now enjoying retirement in the Fraser Valley of British Columbia with his wife of 57 years - the former Joan M. Horton of Croydon - the couple have three married children and, at last count, five grandchildren.

John "Jack" Jackaman, Fraser Valley, British Columbia, Canada, June 2010 Email


 Paul Graham (JRGS 1959-66) walks the Addington Hills; what spectacular  views...

Last Sunday, 13th June, I was walking a 20-mile section of the London Loop long-distance route in glorious sunshine – highly recommended – see this link.
   Through Croydon Borough, the route passes the Sandrock Hotel in Shirley, and includes Oaks Road and Addington (Shirley) Hills. A trip down memory lane for me, especially the scramble up the gravel slopes – see the photos below - and it seemed more inviting 50 years on without the thought of Mr. Charles Smith berating those who had dared to slow to walking pace on his cross country run. Click on any thumbnail to view  a larger image.

Slope up to Addington Hills Lookout Memorial on Addington Hills Shirley Windmill and view of London

Slope to Addington Hills

Lookout Memorial

View of Shirley Windmill

View of London from Addington Hills

View north towards London

As can be seen, the view from the top was stunning. Wembley Stadium was a different shape in 1960, and Canary Wharf etc unheard of. But the BBC and ITV television transmitter towers at Crystal Palace are unchanged. Way down in the right hand corner you can see the sails of the windmill in the former school grounds.
   I had forgotten that the viewpoint was provided to commemorate 900 years of Croydon’s history by Alderman Monk, who entertained us (if that is the right word) at school Speech Days.
Paul Graham, Iver, Bucks, June 2010 Email.


 Mike Etheridge (JRGS 1963-65) reports on this year's Bromley Motoring Pageant...

2010 Bromley Motoring PageantThe annual Bromley Pageant of Motoring was held on Sunday, June 13, at its traditional venue, Norman Park, Bromley. As in previous years, anyone with a pre-79 car was allowed to bring their vehicle to the site and park for free.
   Once again the one-day event, promoted under the Classic Car Weekly banner, proved to be very relaxing and entertaining, with a great range of cars, lorries, buses and military vehicles, together with a  collection of new cars for sale/viewing, etc.
   The Alumni might be interested in seeing some of the photographs I secured of favourite cars that date back to the Fifties and Sixties.
   Click here to reach the viewing page. Past pageants: 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005

Mike Etheridge, Sanderstead, Surrey. June 2010 Email


 Mel Lambert (JRGS 1959-65) discovers our Summer Game alive in Los Angeles...

While journeying last summer through the San Fernando Valley north of Los Angeles, I came across a cricket game in progress close to the Sepulveda Basin reservoir. Although I had heard that Woodley Park was a favorite setting for our Summer Game, in close to 30 years of living here I had never checked it out.
   It seems that two local teams play a limited-over game each Sunday. We encountered the game in the mid-afternoon, when the score was as follows; click on the thumbnails to view a larger version.

LA cricket LA Cricket

The setting was perfect. In fact, the trees surrounding the park looked not unlike those bounding the Oaks Road playing fields from my JRGS days, although I think the school grounds staff were probably able to keep the wicket in better shape. The LA temperature earlier that week has been in the mid-Nineties/35C, making the already sandy ground dry and unresponsive - the ball was coming up high during the several overs we observed.
   The gentleman I spoke with was optimistic that the second-on team had a good chance of winning, despite the fact that they had put on their more competent batters in the opening quartet. It seems that a number of members of the Asian community turn out regularly with a number of local teams.
   I plan to return to the park this coming summer and follow progress.

Mel Lambert, Burbank, CA, USA. June 2010 Email


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