Eccles Grammar School

Essayan – Spring 1967




At last, this long-awaited collection of literary gems, hair-raising sports reports and other miscellaneous articles of undoubted (?) merit, has reached you, the public. Doubtless you have all been wonder­ing why this edition is so late, and we, the editors, will attempt to justify ourselves by saying that the task of selecting suitable articles from the highly varied material which has been submitted, has been a prodigious one. (We have had to obtain legal advice to ensure that some of the articles will not incur libel suits or incite revolution.)


Now we come to the enigma of the mystery building in the boys' yard, which has dumbfounded us (that is, those who have noticed it!) There have been various suggestions — both wild and hopeful — as to its purpose, for example: "Is it a greengrocery store for one of the mem­bers of staff?" or "Could it be a bowling alley?" or "Have they dis­covered gold under the floor?" The presence of the "workmen" was announced one morning by a stream of colourful abuse and invective, which was partially drowned by the cacophonous strains of the Third Programme! ? ! But now it is rumoured that this appendage to the Mc­Ewan Academy, measuring 15 feet by 7 (including the greasy pole), is merely intended to accommodate 250 hypothetical students of a hypo­thetical Sixth Form College.



Last year saw many new members of staff, both part-time and full­time. First of all, we were very pleased to welcome Mrs. NaIl. as Senior Mistress. As well as holding this important position, Mrs. NaIl also teaches Biology, having obtained a B.Sc. degree and a Diploma in Edu­cation at Manchester University. She has taught in several Grammar Schools throughout the country, and came to us from Hinckley Grammar School, Leicestershire, where she was Senior Mistress.

We also welcomed Mr. A. H. Charlton (B.A.), who had been teach­ing at Darwen Grammar before he came here in January of last year. He has taken over from Mrs. Niddrie. as Head of the French Depart­ment. Mrs. E. M. Young. from Kesteven College of Education, Lincoln­shire, teaches Maths. Mrs. Eaves teaches Domestic Science, having already taught at Lymm Secondary School and at Indianapolis High School, U.S.A. Mrs. Boireau (B.A.) studied at Leeds University, where she obtained her degree in English, French and Russian. She gained also a Diploma in Education at Westminster College, London.

Last September, Mr. Laws (M.A.), came to teach P.E. and games, having taught at Darlington Primary School for two years. He took his degree at Edinburgh University in Russian and German, and obtained further qualifications at Carnegie College of Physical Education. Mr. G. Barrett teaches Technical Drawing, and has taught already at Man­chester College of Building. Mr. J. S. Palliser took a B.A. degree in French and German at Oxford University and is now a French teacher. Mr. D. R. Worsley (B.A.) read for his degree in Modern History at Oxford University and was also awarded his Cricket Blue. He has joined the English staff. Mrs. J. Coan (B.A.) has taken over from Mr. Farri­mond, to teach French and German. She obtained a degree in German at Manchester University, and further qualifications at Didsbury College of Education, having taught at Congleton Grammar School before com­ing here. Mrs. M. McLucas has come from I. M. Marsh College of P.E., Liverpool, and has widened our scope considerably in gym and games. Miss M. R. Thomas (B.A.) read for her degree in Medieval and Modern History at Manchester University and obtained a Diploma in Education at Birmingham University.

Members of staff who have come to teach part-time are Mrs. J. A. Penny, from Manchester Regional College of Art. Mr. P. Doyle also teaches Art, and has come from Ambrose Barlow School, Swinton. Mrs. Clegg is helping with needlework; she taught at Ellesmere Park Second­ary Modern before she came here.

We were sorry to lose the following members of staff last July: Mr. Farrimond has gone to Marple Grammar to teach French and German. Mr. Turner is now teaching at Cowley Grammar School. Mr. Williams has left the Art Department to lecture in Art at Mather College of Education. Mr. Smith, who used to teach woodwork, is now lecturing at Alsager College of Education. Miss Baxendall is teaching temporarily at Lady Lumley's School, Pickering. Miss Green is training to be a Missionary for the Church of England. Miss Kerfoot has retired from teaching Art. Mrs. Ravenscroft, Mrs. Rutland and Mrs. Wright have left in order to answer Domestic Duties.

We wish all these members of staff the best of luck in the future, and thank them for the help they have given us.



I have walked the path of memory,

The dark street crowded with reminiscence.

Humiliation laughed hollowly,

Pointing her gnarled finger;

And I withered.

Fear crowed exultantly;

Sorrow sobbed incessantly;

Defeat and Failure,

Those fury-sisters surged inwards,

Twining their skinny arms

About my limbs.

Cowering, bound in lethargy,

I struggled on.

Self-consequence and self-pity

Combined their forces to speed my fall.

Old loves invaded my mind

Their images passing mistily

As ships in the night;

There momentarily,

Vanished eternally.

Then the sunlight of Joy

Dappled the leaves,

The brilliance of Hope

Flooded my heart,

And Faith guided me onwards­

Into the Future.



As last year, the annual speech day took on a slightly different aspect. The headmaster opened the proceedings with his report, in which he divided school life into three stages.

In the first of these, from the 1st to the 3rd forms, he stated his intention of ending "streaming", and then continued this policy in the 4th and 5th years by discouraging specialisation. Even in the last two years at school from 16 to 18 he proposed a wider curriculum of major subjects taken to 'A' level and at the same time several minor subjects might be studied to give the students a wider culture without prejudicing their chances at university.

The headmaster was particularly pleased with the numbers in the 6th form (130), saying that, while they sometimes created difficulties owing to shortage of staff, as in the Geography department, he liked to see the willingness of young people to continue their education, especially those from other schools who were "keen and determined."

His report ended with a note on the extensions already made to the school, of a pottery room and photographic dark room and of the 6th form conference room, which was to be ready by Christmas. Mr. McEwan took this opportunity of telling parents of the proposed 6th Form Col­lege, the beginnings of the "comprehensive system" in Eccles, in which he believed the staff should have some say in the design of laboratories, to avoid any expensive construction mistakes.

After a varied programme by the choir, the chairman, Mr. J. P. McDougall, M.M., J.P., introduced the guest speaker, the Rev. E. Gordon Rupp, M.A., D.D., with his customary wit, adding that the school build­ings had been inadequate for years. Having distributed the prizes and certificates, Professor Rupp delivered an entertaining address on his ex­periences in the South Seas, and his views on possible developments in education.

The evening was rounded off by two more songs from the choir and a vote of thanks from the Head Boy, seconded by the Head Girl, who presented Professor Rupp with a book. So ended a most entertaining evening.


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