Extracts from The Echo September 1950
The School Year of 1949-50 was very eventful.
The main event was the arrival of Mr. I. J. Herring, M.A., to take over the headmastership of the school in succession to Mr. Burdett
As Mr. Herring could not be released from his position as Headmaster of Coalbrookdale Grammar School, Shropshire, until the end of December, 1949, there was an interregnum until he arrived in January of this year.
During this period Miss Mennie very capably took over the role of Acting Headmistress, with Mr. Smith as Senior Assistant Master.
The manner in which all members •of the School community, both staff and scholars, combined to make, this difficult period vigorous, effective 'and enjoyable, was a tribute to the maturity and sense of responsibility that our School has now achieved.
Our highest praise must go to Miss Mennie for the admirable manner and unstinting zeal with which she carried out the 'Combined duties of Acting Headmistress and Chemistry Mistress.
Mr. Herring arrived in January and quickly made himself at home in our midst, although at first some of his week-ends had to be spent at Coalbrookdale, where Mrs. Herring continued to live until Easter.
Mr. Herring's search for a house in this neighbourhood resulted in his bringing his family into a new home in Gordon Road, Chingford, in the Easter vacation.
We congratulate Mr. and Mrs. Herring on the birth of their son in February.
At the end of the winter term we had to say good-bye to Mr. Tapley, who had so effectively carried on,
even in his temporary capacity, the work of the Biology Department after the departure of Miss Rowland,
who left us at the end of the previous Summer Term to take up the post of Senior Mistress and Biology Mistress at Hornsey Grammar School, Middlesex.
Mr. Tapley is now a Government biologist with the African Groundnuts Scheme in Tanganyika and is very happy in his work there.
Mrs. Owen, as usual in our emergencies, stepped into the breach and very nobly and capably carried on the work of the Biology Department.
So many times in succession has Mrs. Owen come to the rescue of the School whenever there is a temporary shortage of staff
that we are inclined to forget that she resigned from this staff some three years ago to devote more time to her home and husband.
We are glad to record that despite Mrs. Owen's devotion to her duties as teacher in this School, neither Mr. Owen nor the home suffer any neglect. At the end of the Spring Term we lost the services of Mr. Harrison, who went to take up a new post in St. Helens, Lancashire,
where he now teaches Physical Training and General Subjects at the Cowley School for Boys in that industrial town. Mr. Lytton,
who had been Mr. Beaumont's deputy here for a year and who left us at the end of the Summer Term, 1949, is also on the same staff and is the Senior French Master. We were reluctant to bid good-bye to Mr. Harrison, who was very popular and rendered notable service to us in his teaching
and in his Rugby and Athletics coaching and was consistently an inspiration to all by his great skill in games, his cheerful personality and his general sporting spirit.
Mr. Davidson, Lecturer in Physical Education at the South-West Essex Technical College, served as a part-time member of the staff during the Summer Term
and carried out most of Mr. Harrison's duties, including the organisation of the Athletic Sports.
In July Mrs. MacDougal also departed from our midst; her pleasant personality will be greatly missed.
She has emigrated to Australia, where she is to marry on her arrival an Australian farmer, like her first husband, who was killed in action during the war.
We welcomed the return to School of Mr. Beaumont after his year of reaching and study in France. We congratulate him on his marriage,
which took place during the 1949 Christmas holidays, and wish both Mr. and Mrs. Beaumorit a long and happy married life together.
We were sorry to be deprived of the services of Mr. Davies for such a long period in the Summer Term
whilst he was receiving medical treatment at the University College Hospital, London, and were glad to see him come back to school so very much better in health. Miss King, who deputised for him in some of his important examination classes, also shared our pleasure. Although it is invidious to make distinctions between the merits of scholars who leave school from time to time,
we feel that these notes would be incomplete if mention were not made of two boys who have given outstanding service to this school during their stay here and earned considerable distinction themselves in academic, athletic and cultural activities. The first of these, Andrew Hellen, has been a pillar of school rugby and cricket teams for many years, both as player and, in latter years, as captain;
as Boys' School captain he was as 'efficient and as wise as he was popular; as an actor he progressed from shy awkwardness to an assured ease, and the fact that he is now moving on to pursue his language studies at Cambridge is an indication of no mean academic achievement. Of Geoffrey Tompkins it is important to mention that he was at the time of his leaving our" oldest inhabitant,"
in the sense that he had pursued his education at this school for eight years-ever since the school was opened properly as a school in these buildings in 1942. As a prefect and school vice-captain, as runner, rugby footballer, student, house captain and notable actor, Geoffrey did well and with many happy memories of the time he spent at this school now moves on to study at the London Hospital for a career in the medical profession. On the girls' side, Vivien Bullar, the Girls' School captain, also leaves us with many distinctions, notably as a very capable actress and administrator.
No doubt her considerable social gifts will prove a great asset to her in her college career and in the outside world. In conclusion of these notes, mention must be made of the changed circumstances of the School Magazine.
At the beginning of the 1949•50 school year it was discovered that the accumulated deficit on the Magazine Fund
had become so heavy that it was impracticable in the future to publish two issues per year,
so great is the cost in proportion to the income derived from a relatively small circulation.
In future the Magazine will be published once a year, in the first month of a new school year, so that all the activities of the previous school year can be recorded in one volume.
This is the first volume of the new type of Magazine publication.