You will have seen
the news reports by now featuring the headmaster of Blackfen School for
Girls who ruined his Year 11 pupils’ last day at school. The humourless
numbskull refused them admission because to celebrate their entrance into the
real world they sewed some sequins on their collars.
It was their last day man, grow up and take your head from your backside!
The only thing that struck me as a bit odd is that their last day at school was in the middle of May. Mine was 21st July 1961 and I only remember a couple of things about it.
We had been made to wear a silly cap every day for seven years. It was a strict rule, deviation from which merited a detention but on the last day we agreed we were not going to wear them. Doctor John Arthur Bourne the Headmaster, MA and Cantab as he always proclaimed himself, didn’t say a word. Neither did anyone kick up a stink when we walked out at lunchtime and went to the pub. Maybe that is why I can’t remember much of the day, it was my first ever glass of ale.
I can look back on my school days and remember my Headmaster as a strict but humane old gentleman. He was in fact only 48 at the time which I didn’t discover until I read his obituary notice back in 2002. But he seemed to be an old man to me. My photos of him only serve to confirm the view. We must have aged him.
No one is going to look back nostalgically on Mr. Matthew Brown in either five or 56 years time and think him either humane or a gentleman. Miserable old sod will be his lasting epitaph.
The mother of a pupil attending Blackfen School told me that one ‘improperly’ dressed girl was allowed in. She was wearing rainbow stickers, badges and braces but had the perfect excuse. She claimed to be transgender - or maybe it was a boy dressed as a girl? It’s something that seems to have been missed from the newspaper reports.
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