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Christchurch Infants School in 1935.

Image: Christchurch School 1935 (78k)

The photo was taken by for the "Silver Jubilee Year of Their Majesties the King and Queen" 1910-1935.

Row 3 : 1 ? Jones , 2 Brian Harris , 3 Graham Harris, 4 "Daddy" Baldwin, 5 Bob White , 6 Miss Dunkley.
Row 2 : 1 ? Childs , 2 ? Hughes , 3 Joan ? Hughes , 4 June White , 5 Pat Powell , 6 Donald Laban , 7 ?
Row 1 : 1 ? , 2 Trevor Harris , 3 Mavis Hughes , 4 Ursula Freeman, 5 Maurice Thomas , 6 Graham Powell , 7 ? 8 ? .

Maurice Thomas remembers the school as "A typical Victorian type building adjoining the churchyard with outside "bucket" toilets. The largest room housed top class juniors and had an open fire to the rear and a tortoise stove at the front. You hoped to be seated within range of one or the other in winter!. It was not unknown for mice to poke their heads from a gap between floor and wall on the churchyard side. The playground was Forestry land across the road.
Around this time the teachers were: Miss Dunkley, Lilian Adams (later Jones), Betty Smith, Iris Hughes, Olive Gwilliam (the Head's wife), Nellie Ebborn and Thomas Gwilliam (Head)."

Celebrated Forest author Dennis Potter attended the same school in 1940. He described it as "one-storeyed, ramshackle ..... .with windows too high for a child to look out .... had a bucket to catch the wet from the rotting roof. And five more buckets at the bottom of the sloping yard as toilets" (1)
Like Maurice, Dennis later attended Bells Grammar School, Coleford, in fact Maurice and Dennis did have the odd pint together.
(1) Dennis Potter, The Authorized Biography, Humphrey Carter 1998, Faber and Faber.
Derek Yemm of Ruardean, UK added (May 2006) : " Miss Dunkley who later became Mrs George Jones lived with us until her death in 1977 . Great aunt always reflected on those days at Christchurch when in the depths of winter she would be on occasions reduced to walking to Christchurch from Ruardean she also remembered teaching Dennis Potter".

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