M.G.S. Magazine - December 1959

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MGS Magazine 1959
Information Pages


MICHAEL H. DODGSON, Head of the School: Bronte House Captain
JEFFREY BARROW, Deputy Head of the School
J. MARTIN ALLEN, Priestley House Captain
GEORGE M. JOKL, Thorpe House Captain

SHIRLEY A. CLARKE, Head of the School
ANNE CARTER, Deputy Head of the School: Thorpe House Captain
E. ANNE FAIRS, Bronte House Captain

GRACE E. JACKSON, Priestley House Captain

Other Officials
D. ALAN STEPHENSON, Captain of Football


"Be to our virtues very kind;
Be to our faults a little blind".

We have run into a great deal of trouble over this issue. Your eyes will not be at fault when you see double sets of Examination Results and so on in the following pages. Ours is the blame, ours the sorrow. On this occasion we shall overlook your shortcomings. To all who have helped in any way in the production of this Magazine we offer our thanks.

Since the last issue of the Magazine there have been several changes on the Staff. Mrs. HOPWOOD left last midsummer after serving the school well for nine years in her capacity as Historian and Geographer. This summer Mrs. JONES, having done her utmost to inculcate the principles of needlework and cookery, left after being with us for seven years. These both felt the call of home duties. Miss CUNNINGHAM after only two years with us, decided to embark on matrimony. They all took with them our best wishes for the future and thanks for work well done.

There is no doubt that, owing to their labours, one generation of M.G.S. pupils at any rate will go out into the world well equipped to appreciate that great classic "1066 and All That" (they may even be able to offer additional material for future editions!); to put into practice Punch's advice to young ladies about to marry, "Feed the brute"; and to "trip it on the light fantastic toe".

To their successors: Mrs CASHDON. Miss BOX, Miss HICKMAN, together with Miss HEYLINGS, now in charge of Music, we extend a very warm welcome and hope that their stay with us may be happy and profitable, both to them and to us.

About Mr. WALKER, Mr. A H BARKER writes:

It was a great shock to me when I first heard that Mr. F. J. WALKER, who has helped and encouraged me greatly in my own work, was to leave this School after fifteen years part-time service. How many look back with me over the years of Founder's and Carol Services with their inspiring music and singing! Life cannot always be easy for a sensitive musician faced by willing but not always musical Forms, yet we remember his good-humoured patience, his careful leading-out of incipient singers. We wish him God-speed. His company in the Staff room is greatly missed.

We were sorry when Mr. ARTHUR BEAUMONT had to retire owing to ill-health, after devoted service to the School. He was succeeded as Caretaker by Mr. COPLEY to whom we offer a belated, but hearty, welcome.

A new popular figure in School this term is EX-SERGEANT HOLT. We are very glad to have him with us and hope he will enjoy his stay here.

Speech Day was held on March 17th, and prizes were presented by Sir LINTON ANDREWS, Editor of The Yorkshire Post. A list of prize and certificate winners is printed later in this issue.

On Ascension Day, the annual Founder's Service was held in the Parish Church. The address was given by the VICAR OF BRIGHOUSE and Prayers were said by the Rev. H. H. EDWARDS. DAVID WROE and DOREEN STRINGER read the lessons.

During the year, senior pupils have been on numerous interesting visits. The Senior Biologists have spent a week at Malham Tarn Field Centre. The sixth form scientists have been with Mr. Saywell to the Clean Air Exhibition at Dewsbury and, in the same week, the linguists accompanied Mr. Elliott to a French film in Huddersfield. In December, the newly-formed Current Affairs Club visited Leeds Assizes with Mrs. Cashdon and the scientists went to an interesting lecture on "Man-made Fibres" at Leeds University.

During the Spring term, Mr. Booth and his artists visited an exhibition at Huddersfield Art Gallery, and the Science Sixth went to the Coal Tar Research Establishment at Gomersal, accompanied by Mr. Saywell and Mr. Howlin.

The Geologists have had their annual expedition .with Mr. Jessop, this time along the coast from Whitby to Scarborough.

During the summer term, Mr. Saywell has organised further visits: to the Steel, Peech and Tozer Steel works in Sheffield, and to an Industrial Chemical Works at Saltend, near Hull.

Last October, Mr. ROGER TRAFFORD made a further visit to the School and gave a wonderful solo performance illustrating "Shakespeare's Use of the Soliloquy".

During the year, four senior pupils were chosen to appear on the Granada I.T.V. programme, "We Want An Answer". They were SHIRLEY CLARKE, ANDREW BROADBENT, VICTOR COCKERILL and MICHAEL DODGSON. Since that programme, Shirley has appeared on I.T.V. regularly.

In May, the School Choir took part in the Grammar Schools' Music Festival at Leeds, when "The Dream of Gerontius" was performed.

We were recently visited by the OSIRIS REPERTORY COMPANY who gave a delightful performance of "The Merchant of Venice".

The School greatly appreciates the many gifts from the Parent-Teacher Association. The latest has been an R.C.A. Hollywood Cine Projector which was officially handed over on November 3rd. After the presentation a film show was enjoyed by the many parents at the meeting.

On November 6th, the Football Team organised such a successful Whist Drive that the profits were sufficient to buy a new set of football shirts.

Our former Editors have moved in diverse directions. PHILIP SENIOR is now a Civil Servant at the Royal Naval Stores, Portsmouth. MARY F. SHAW teaches the young in Dewsbury, prior to attending Training College, and CATHERINE WALKER is thoroughly enjoying life at Scarborough Training College

To all the above we wish every happiness and success.


A Current Affairs Club was founded in September 1958. Meetings took place fortnightly in the library to discuss World Affairs. In November an excursion was organised to Leeds Assizes, where we heard part of a murder trial. Later in the year Mr. John Rex, a lecturer in Sociology at Leeds University, and a South African by birth, gave us a very enlightening talk on Central Africa.

This year the efforts of the club are to be directed to the various aspects of World Refugee Year.


The senior pupils presented their annual play in March. This year it was "Bonaventure" by Charlotte Hastings, and tells the story of how a woman of artistic temperament, who has been wrongly convicted with the murder of her brother, is proved to be innocent.

The brother, Jason Carn, was murdered by Doctor Jeffries for revenge, owing to the dead mans association with the doctor's wife who had died in America. Moreover, Jeffries was the attending physician at the trial and was in a position to throw the suspicion on the woman who had nursed a sick Jason, namely Sarat. She was tried, found guilty, and sentenced to death.

The play opens with Sarat Carn being brought to the shelter of the Convent by her escort, on the way to her place of execution, to seek shelter from the floods. She is at first very hostile to Sister Mary Bonaventure but her manner gradually) changes and a deep mutual trust grows between the two women. Mary is convinced of Sarat's innocence and this she proves by exposing Doctor Jeffries as the real murderer, although she experiences bitter self-reproach owing to the severe attitude taken over the affair by the Mother Superior.

Mother Superior (ANNE CARTER) was well cast in physical stature and timbre of the voice; throughout the play she appeared to be in full command with the dignity of her religious order. The sympathetic character of Sister Bonaventure (DOREEN STRINGER) was thoughtfully portrayed and her warm heartedness added colour to cool, efficient reasoning. Two young nurses. Nurse Phillips (ANNE FAIRS) and Nurse Brent (JILL DANIELS) showed well the contrasting natures of a staid, ambitious nurse and a lively, fun-loving girl. For their frequent quarrels they were scolded by Sister Josephine (MARY SHAW) whose Scots humour and keenness were expressed with a surprisingly gentle touch.

Sarat Carn (SHIRLEY CLARKE) was played with great confidence and expression of character, which was often evident in her encounters with Jeffries (T. A. BROADBENT) where his difficult part embodied the smooth words of a confident doctor and the anguish of a grief-stricken murderer. Sarat's guardians, Pierce (NORMA ELLIS) and Melling (J M HAIGH) were business-like as prison officials are, but Melling's acting lacked virility. The veins of humour in this rather serious play were provided by Willy Pentridge (M. H. DODGSON) and Martha (CATHERINE WALKER), his mother. The difference in their heights was broached by the dimwitted but innocent actions of the gangling Willy, and Martha's lively, caustic tongue which tended unfortunately at times to be rather low pitched, spoiling her otherwise excellent presentation.

The long, rather heavy scenes in this play were tackled assiduously by the cast, and the mature emotions involved were convincingly portrayed by these young people. Much pleasure was gained by all who were concerned owing chiefly to the tireless work of our producer, Mr. EVANS, who spent many patient hours directing the practices and rehearsals, and also preparing the scenery and stage-effects. Our thanks must also go to Miss JEFFERY and Miss SHEARD for their valuable work with the costumes and last but by no means least to Mr. BARROW'S stalwarts for their hard work with the off-stage effects and scene changes.


Recently there has been a great deal of news in the local press with regard to the founder of our School, the Reverend Richard Thorpe. While overgrowth was being removed from the old churchyard the tombstone of Richard Thorpe was once again brought to the light of day. In 1667, this worthy gentleman founded and endowed our school so that a master could be paid to teach 15 poor children of the parish of Mirfield until they could read English well. Through the past 300 years and from these small beginnings our school has flourished and grown until it has 377 pupils at the present time. From those original 15 pupils we had our first Old Grammarians — who knows, there may have been a society of Old Grammarians even in those far off days! Since 1667, several thousand pupils have passed through the school and taking into account the passage of time and the fact that we do not live for ever, there must be many hundreds of Old Grammarians still in circulation at the present time. Our membership at the moment certainly does not bear witness to this fact and we should like to see more of you becoming members of our Association and taking an active part.

We send our greetings to all Old Grammarians wherever they may be. Particularly, we remember our President, W. R. Beaumont. Esq., who is this year Mayor of Ripon — to him and to Mrs. Beaumont we send our best wishes for a happy and successful year of office. Yet another Old Grammarian, Mrs. W. E. Whitwell, known to many of you as Beryl Goldthorpe, is in the news in the Mayoral world — her husband is now Mayor of Kendal and she is Mayoress — to them also we send our best wishes for a successful year of office. We send congratulations to Dr. R. E. Coupland on his fairly recent appointment as Professor of Anatomy at Dundee and St. Andrews, to Dr. I. Nutting of Cambridge, who has been in the public eye through the medium of television in a recent Science Series in the field of Metallurgy, and to B. G. Kaye, Esq., who became Editor of the Yorkshire Evening News some months ago — we wish them all continued success and prosperity.

We rejoice in the success of our Old Grammarians and would welcome more news of such - please do let us know, of your 'comings and goings' — and — do become a member of the Old Grammarians without delay!


President: W. R. Beaumont, Esq.

Life Vice-Presidents:
Miss H. Conyers, Miss M. E. Todd, Miss E. M. Young, C. C. Bracwell, Esq.,
W. Hepworth, Esq.

F. Brearley, Esq., W. H. Brook, Esq., S. W. Evans, Esq., I. D. Fairs, Esq., H. Jessop, Esq., R. Lockwood, Esq., I. Martindale, Esq., W. S. McLauchlan, Esq., C. Riley, Esq.

Hon. Secretary: Miss M. L. Sheard

Hon. Treasurer: Mrs. M. E. Jessop

General Committee:
Miss K. M. Appleyard, Miss G. R. Brown, Mrs. D. W. James, Miss M. R. Jeffery, Miss M. Sheard, Miss M. Stead, G. D. Barrowclough, Esq., D. N. Bruce, Esq., I. Butler, Esq., G. Kilner, Esq., M. Storey, Esq., P. Storey, Esq.

Dramatic Section:
Hon. Secretary: Mrs. S. M. Harford — Hon. Treasurer: Mrs. E. Chandler

Table Tennis Section:
Hon. Secretary: D. N. Bruce, Esq. — Hon. Treasurer: M. Storey, Esq.


Dear Old Grammarians,
It was with the greatest possible pleasure that I accepted nomination as your President for 1959, and was very grateful to the Committee and Members for appointing me.
Speaking as a Founder-Member who has attended The Annual Reunion whenever possible, I am amazed that so many ex-pupils show no interest whatever in our Association.
It is a matter of great pride to me that my old School friends and Form-mates, Jack Martindale and Clifford Riley, are Past-Presidents of the Old Grammarians for we all went to Mirfield Grammar School for the first time on the same day in September, 1919, and to have three Presidents from the same form, which never contained more than fifteen boys at any time, is surely a record for an Association of this kind.
I say to all Old Grammarians, join the Old Grammarians Association.
It is your only opportunity to renew old acquaintances, and foster new friendships amongst those who have passed through Mirfield Grammar School. It is also an opportunity to do something for the School, its Pupils, and its Old Scholars, for many opportunities present themselves once you are a member of the association.
You did not confer an honour upon Mirfield Grammar School by condescending to attend there for your education. The School did more for you than you did for the School, and more for you than you will ever know or be prepared to admit.
To you who are still at School, I say - Join the Old Grammarians Association as soon as you leave, not for what you are going to get out of it, but for what you intend to put into it.
Yours sincerely,
J.P., F.Inst.D., F.C.C.S., F.I.A.C.
Mayor of Ripon, 1959/60