Issue No. 17 Autumn 2000
















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Editor’s Odds and Ends


The Chairman's Report

Membership Secretary, Rosemary Dale

John Gent's Bits

     Bursary Award

    Memorial Gates

    1960'ers Reunion

     Strawberry Tea for Norman Bradshaw's 95th


     Photos of DCGS Teachers

     Organising a Reunion?

Maureen Meier's Countdown to a Celebration

Stanley Bruinvels got six of the best from Johnny Rivett!

Arthur Lowndes with words and photographs

Ralph Mann is retiring for the third time!

Robert Miller reporting on Mole Valley today

Merrian Lancaster ‑ a Long Distance Walker revisits Mole Valley

Ashcombe Dorkinian Association Golf ‑ Harold Child reporting

Old Dorkinian Cricket Club

Neil Perry supplies 'another gem from yesteryear'

Old Dorkinian Football Club





It is good to continue to receive such a wide variety of comment and contribution from across the years, and the 1930s are well represented this time by Stanley Bruinvels, Arthur Lowndes and Ralph Mann.


Peter Newman belongs to the 1940s, and in giving us his email address says he is Professor Emeritus of Economics at The John Hopkins University ‑ so a potted history would be very welcome for the next issue! But, of course, this comment applies to all those members who have been too modest, shy or lazy (!) to come forward yet.


Gus Guthrie met Professor Greg Bamber at a dinner in Brisbane earlier this year, and realised that they had not only been at DCGS together, but also went to the same primary school. We trust that Greg will soon be one of us! Gus is now at PO Box 369, Buderim, Queensland 4556, Australia, having moved permanently.


David Richards points out that David checks out as Devoid in the spellcheck, presumably his excuse for having no anecdotes from the 1965‑71 vintage. However we are encouraged by his "maybe next time". He is Head of Clinical Development, Bronchodilators and Intranasals International Product Development Leader, Flixonase Respiratory Therapeutic Development ‑well, that's what his email said!


Marian Barber has moved from Epsom and now lives at 8 Balquhain Close, Ashtead, Surrey KT21 2DG


We were very sorry to hear of the death, on 22nd July this year, of David Adams (1953­


Congratulations to Esme Leedham on her upper second in Geography (BSc. Hons) from Bristol University last summer. Esme has now nearly completed her PGCE at Liverpool Hope and intends to stay in Liverpool to teach Geography (11‑ 18). Throughout her university career she was a Midshipman in the Royal Naval Reserve (Bristol U. RN Unit)


Current address: 7 Danefield Terrace, Mather Avenue, Liverpool L19 4TH.


Dave Wilcockson, the evergreen (in the best sense) Old Dorkinian cricketer, has described some good performances in his report, none better than his own participation in a winning last wicket stand of 48 with Dave Brook. The tension must have been high!


In the Spring Issue I queried that Tracy Moorshead had played for the ODs, and waited for Dave Wilcockson to explain. However, Lionel Rose, our sharp eyed Secretary, obviously reads the Newsletters thoroughly as he told me that some years ago Tracy Moorshead responded to an ad he had placed on behalf of a client who was looking to fill a particular job. Lionel was intrigued by his name and during the course of a telephone conversation found out that he lived near Dorking. Tracy asked Lionel if he was aware that the School was having a Reunion ‑ that was 1992, and but for that conversation we might never have had the pleasure of Lionel's membership!


The umbrella left behind at the October Reunion has been claimed ‑ another careful reader, if absent minded in other ways!


As mentioned elsewhere, we are planning to keep records on disk of School photographs, and John Gent will be scanning some in at the Reunion/AGM in October, so please bring yours with you, knowing that you can take them away and not have to leave them with us! We hope to make disks available at a later date.


By the way, no one commented on the new 'bookstyle' of the Spring Newsletter ‑ did anyone notice?!


David Mountain August 2000

65 Broadhurst, Ashtead

Surrey KT21 1 Q1D

Tel: 01372 273227 Email:





ADA Golf ‑ next fixture on Thursday October 5th at Dorking, thanks to the good offices of Harold Child.


REUNION/AGM ‑ Saturday 14th October 2000 ‑ early warning was given with Sheila's letter of 31st July, and full details are enclosed with this Newsletter.


ODFC host League Representative Match against Cambridge University on Wednesday 8th November at 2.15pm.


COPY for next Newsletter to the Editor by 1st April 200 1, please.



From The Chairman.


Welcome to our Autumn Newsletter. Another Summer is quickly passing and weatherwise, not a very good one but who are we to grumble as the sun shone superbly on Brute's 95th Birthday Party in Maureen and Bob Meier's beautiful garden at Bookham. This was a lovely occasion with some sixty members attending. Mine was the privilege to welcome Brute and present him with a few mementos to mark the day. Our thoughtful hosts had secured an electrically propelled chair for him to drive around in which enabled him to get about and talk to everyone. Brute was his usual buoyant self with a memory that puts us all to shame, and there is no doubt, he still commands the loving respect he did when he joined the School sixty‑nine years ago.


Turning now to this year's project, the Memorial Gates, let me bring you up to date. John Hayns who as you know, is leading the project, produced a very elegant landscaped design which incorporated not only the restored gates themselves but also the gate from the original boys quad and, early in the year, it was thought that both "siting" and "design" agreement with the School had been reached. However, subsequent to a "confirmatory" meeting with one of the Governors at the School in early June, concern was raised about the proposed siting in that it could deny a particular access which, it was considered, might later be needed. An alternative site was offered but as access to it would have necessarily been through the School itself, we considered it unsuitable and were therefore unable to accept it. However, further negotiation resulted in agreement on a simpler [and therefore cheaper] design of memorial to be erected on the original site but re‑orientated to allow the required access to be maintained. This slight hiatus resulted in only a small delay in the overall plan and orders were placed to begin early parts of the work. We remain hopeful that all the tasks will be completed for a rededication of the Gates to be held before the AGM on 14 October but we will communicate with everyone separately nearer the time.


On the financial side, the money for the project will come from the "buy a brick" appeal which so many of you so generously supported and from Association funds which have been accumulated over the years. Despite its earlier promises, the so called "1992 Reunion Committee" declined to provide a contribution from the surplus of £3,700 of the monies which you paid to support that occasion and without your authority, as the "owners" of that money, have now handed it all over to the School to be disposed of at the discretion of the School. On your behalf the Committee has challenged these various actions throughout the year but it all became somewhat acrimonious and the Association withdrew from any further discussion so that discredit would not fall upon the School.


Thus, the Memorial will perhaps not be quite as elegant as John had originally proposed but nevertheless will still be a fitting tribute to those Old Dorkinians in memory of whom it will be re‑dedicated. As I have said, I hope all will be ready for 14 October [I ‑am quietly confident!] and I look forward to seeing everybody at the top of the School Drive on that date. In connection with the Memorial but in the longer term, we are hoping to create a Memorial Book which would contain as much information as possible about those who served wartime Britain. Such information is not easy to come by so if any members have any, please send it in!


Best wishes to you all.


Mike Dobson.



The Ashcombe Dorkinian Association


from the Membership Secretary

Revd. Rosernary Dale, 5 Water Lane. Wirksworth. Derbyshire. DE4 4DZ

e‑mail revrdale@aol com


Membership Report

August 2000


Numbers are keeping up very nicely, in October 1999 we had 325 members, and now, after removing 34 in the Great Purge, we have 326. Any mathematical freaks out there may notice that there are more names than this on the current Membership List this is because I did not remove the names of defaulters fast time, in case they thought better of it and had to be reinstated ‑ but they didn't receive the last mailing. Many thanks to all those who have been quietly or vigorously recruiting during the last year, to make these healthy figures possible.


Please add these new members, whom we welcome warmly, to your list.

CRATCHLEY Mrs Kathleen Bron‑y‑De Dwyrain Llanfairpwilgwyngyll... Isle of Anglesey LL61 6YD


FENTON Mr Peter Hall Stables Mickleharn Dorking, Surrey RH5 6DY 1952‑59

FOTHERGILL Mrs Pat The Granary, Shorehead , Stonehaven AB39 2JY WADDINGTON 1946‑54

FRASER Mr Ian Eversley ,79 Bentsbrook Park, N Holrnwood,Dorking, Surrey RH5 4JL 1946‑51

MOLYNEUX Mr John 18 Bay Close Horley , Surrey RH6 8LF 1949‑54

MURNAGHAN Mrs Daphne 172 Cirencester Road ,Charlton Kings, Cheltenham Glos. GL53 8DY

SHIPLEY 1936‑44

SINKS Mrs Olivia 5495 East Olivia Lane Hereford Arizona 85615 USA COLE 1953‑60


It is a great personal pleasure to me to have the whole Waddington clan on board at last ‑ though I had hoped never to have to cope with the dreaded Llanfair.. wordl (Yes. it really is that one; even Katy doesn't write out the whole name). I'm sure a Membership Secretary should be wore impartial than this ‑ Sorry to the others!


Will you please note that a new system for subscription requests starts NOW. It has become clear that a good education doesn't necessarily guarantee efficiency in the keeping of financial records. Surprising numbers of you have paid twice, sometimes by banker's order and by cheque. So this time, you should find in your mailing


• a thank you note if you pay by banker's order, Or


• a thank you note if you have already paid next year's subscription (yes, some people really have!), Or


• the usual proforma if you need to pay, Or


• none of the above it you are an honorary or student member


I am hoping that the excellent education received many years ago by your Committee will ensure that the fight slips go in the fight envelopes. It you think there is a mistake, please let me know. Please don't pay unless you receive the subscription request; if you do receive it please do pay ‑subscriptions other than bankers orders are due on SEPTEMBER 1st.





John Gent's Bits :



The Ashcombe Dorkinian Association Bursary


This year the ADA Bursary attracted a record number of applicants, all of very high standard. Indeed the Committee decided, after due consideration, to award two Bursaries this year, to Richard Williams and to Elizabeth Thompson.


Richard, who was Head Boy, has been accepted at Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge, where he intends to read Geography.

Elizabeth has also let us know that she will be going to Emmanuel College, Cambridge, to read Natural Sciences, having obtained 5 Grade A's and a distinction in S‑level Chemistry. She comments, "I am very pleased that the hard work has paid off!”.


The Bursaries will be awarded formally at the School's Awards Evening in December.


We wish them all the best and look forward to receiving their reports for inclusion in the Newsletter next year. Our best wishes also go to the other applicants: Helen Butlin, Thomas Phillips and Leanne Robotham.



The Memorial Gates


The Memorial Gates saga which our Chairman has spoken about in his bit, is continuing apace and the refurbishment of the Gates themselves is already nearing completion. The groundwork is scheduled to begin as this goes to press and we have every hope that the rededication will take place as planned. We are keeping a photographic record and it is anticipated that this will be presented in the next Newsletter (Issue 18, Spring 2001).



The "1960'ers" hold their Millennium Reunion


Not to be outdone by the "59/61'ers", whose reunion was reported in the last Newsletter (Issue 16, Spring 2000), the 1960'ers held their Millennium Reunion on 6th May at the Stephan Langton Restaurant, Friday Street. Organised, as on previous occasions by Anna Cooper, it was again a resounding success, very well attended with no less than four overseas members coming over specially, from Belgium, Netherlands, USA and Canada.


Once again Anna announced that this was the last time that she'd be organising the event, but as the TV advert says, "She's said that before ...!" However, to be fair, volunteers were forthcoming for future reunions. Very well done indeed, Anna!


Anna Cooper making her Welcoming Speech

Viewing Alan Collins' Schooldays' Photos




The Strawberry Tea honouring Norman Bradshaw's 95th Birthday



This year's Summer Reunion, or Strawberry Tea, or colloquially known as "Brute's Bash", was of particular note as it commemorated not only the Millennium but also marked the 95th Birthday of Norman "Brutus"/"Brute" Bradshaw. On Saturday, June 10th, in glorious sunshine (all day!), it was particularly well attended, so much so that the original attendance limit was exceeded. Our very grateful thanks, especially to Maureen and Bob Meier who once again allowed their house to be used as the venue, but also to all other members of the committee who did such sterling work in helping the event to run so smoothly, organised as usual by Maureen Meier and Sheila Sandford.


Norman was in particularly fine fettle and looked much younger than his 95 years, as can be seen from the accompanying photos. An electric "buggy" was put at his disposal and he took to it like he was Stirling Moss! Sheila Dobson, (our Chairman's good lady), had made a very special birthday cake for Norman, even down to creating an icing replica of his signature. Maureen (that lady again), of fuchsia fame, had grown a special variety called "Brutus", which she presented to Norman with the comment that it was particularly appropriate as it is "hardy", and you can't get much more hardy than Norman!





"The Calm before the Storm" "The Cake that Sheila made"


Norman and his Buggy, watched over by our Chairman Strawberries and Cream, Anybody?







The School's Magazine 'Accent on Ashcombe'


The Ashcombe School website,, has recently been revamped, and now comprises 135 pages and over 100 photos. Most of the information in the latest edition of Accent (Number 6, July 2000) can be found there, but for those of you without a computer the following summarizes the main points.


South East Teacher of the Year Award for Mr Blow


For his splendid work in ICT, and more particularly for "The Most Creative Use of ICT", Mr Blow received the prestigious South East Teacher of the Year Award (and £3,000 for the school) at a ceremony at the Cafe Royal in London.


Overseas Visits


Once again the School was host to a visit from Tanzania by 9 students and the Headteacher (Mr Kaaya) from the Tambaza School. During the visit the &h Form Senior Prefects hosted a St. Valentine's Day social for them.


In June, 63 pupils from Year 8 and 6 accompanying teachers went to Northern France, staying as paying guests in French homes local to Armentieres and Lille, close to the Belgian border. Visits to the WWI underground passages in Arras and to the WWII V1 Rocket launch site at Eperlecques, as well as more pleasant outings to Bruges and Calais made it a very memorable experience for the youngsters.


Exchange Programmes have also been organised for 6 h Formers' work experience in Germany as well as for 31 students and 3 teachers to Epernay in France.


During June 30 Year 10 pupils and 2 A‑level Music Students travelled to Munster in Germany to present a 30‑minute operetta based on the Comenius project's theme of "The world of work". Whilst there they also visited EXPO 2000 in Hanover.


School Sport


6 pupils represented Central Surrey at the Surrey Schools Cross‑Country Championships.


A Gym and Dance evening had also been organised, affording a great opportunity for pupils to perform in front of an audience


Katherine Hopson, Upper 6th, has qualified for the Volvo Royal Yachting Association Youth Programme and will be coached by Olympic Standard Sailors. Her goal is to reach the Youth World Championships in Sydney.


40 Ashcombe School Swimmers took part in the Swimarathon 2000 at Dorking Swimming Centre. A team of the School's fastest swimmers formed themselves into a team called the "Amphibians" and competed for the Secondary School Trophy. They equalled last year's record of 101 laps and helped Ashcombe retain their place as overall winners.


Sports Hall


The results of the School's tender for the proposed new Sports Hall are to be known soon, says Accent. If the Lottery agrees to support the bid, then Sport England will make a final decision. If approval is given, building work should begin in October. As a result of yet another delicate negotiation, the Foundation for Sports and Arts has agreed to hold its offer of £75,000 until September.



Photographs of Some of Our Former Teachers


Alan Collins has very kindly lent me a few pictures he took of some of our former teachers. The picture of Doc Morgan was taken 40 years ago and as you can see he still has the same stance which we knew so well (the inset picture was published in the last Newsletter but is repeated here for comparison). As elsewhere in this Newsletter, we'll leave you guessing as to the identity of the others ... Has anybody got any more pictures and/or anecdotes?





Old Photographs


We are hoping to get together an archive of old photographs of former pupils, staff and sports teams (and anything else which might be of interest!). The intention is to scan them in and put them onto a CD in digital format, returning the photos to the owners. If you are coming to the Millennium Lunch on October 14th , I am hoping to be able to scan some pictures then, so bring them with you. Please also have a list prepared with as much information as possible about the picture, but particularly the year it was taken and your name: we won't have time to do much writing on the day!



Organising a Reunion


I have had quite a few requests for pointers on how to organise your own Class Reunions. There is no easy way to get the information and I'm afraid it will involve a lot of phoning. However the results can be very rewarding.


• The first thing is to get a base list on which to build. The usual way is to start with the 5th Form list which shows all pupils who obtained O‑Levels. However that may not be complete as some pupils dropped out before the 5th Form or maybe weren't listed.


• 5th Form lists for the years 1958 to 1974 were published in our Newsletter No. 11, Autumn 1997. If there is a demand we may publish them again. (If you have issues of the School magazine with 5th Form lists outside these years, please could we borrow them?)


• Additional information can be obtained from the School Entry Lists, of which we have been able to obtain maybe 90% (the war years were a bit iffy as the records don't seem to have been filled in consecutively)


• Bear in mind also that some pupils started after the 1st Form. This is particularly noticeable in the 50's when there were regular intakes of "13 Plus" pupils.


• Having got your list you can then start finding people. Unfortunately girls change their names when they get married. Fortunately, however, they do tend to keep in contact far more than guys, and finding the whereabouts of one will usually lead you to discovering several more.


• I have also found that a fair number of pupils either stay in the Dorking/Leatherhead/ Ashtead areas or come back later on in life.


• Guys don't usually change their names and you can search locally in the Dorking/Leatherhead/Ashtead area phone books for addresses and telephone numbers.


• There are CD's of phone numbers available which will facilitate your search.


• Try and find the full (and correct) initials and names of everybody you are searching for. If they have several initials you can probably do a country‑wide search. Be prepared to leave several messages if there are alternatives. I have found that most people have answerphones and are not averse to helping you: in fact some are very helpful.


• For the girls, if they have a brother, find their names and proceed as above.


• Also, the girls may have cousins, nephews, nieces, or even parents still living in the area. (That goes for the guys as well, of course!)


• Finally, the internet is not a bad way ‑ somebody in our class was contacted out of the blue with the email "Are you the person who was at Dorking County School?" And he was!


John Gent






AUTUMN '99 ‑ John suggests a Strawberry Tea to celebrate Mr. Bradshaw's 95th birthday in June 2000. About 40 members might come so I offer the use of our house and garden. Committee agree. Newsheet sent out with details to all ADA members. Mr Bradshaw (hereinafter referred to as 'Norman') must not find out!!


FEBRUARY ‑ Great response ‑ 33 applications so far, without Committee.


MARCH‑‑ Numbers going up (as are Bob's eyebrows), now reached 50. Can we cope? Close list at 60 with 10‑20 waiting. This is a lot more than we had bargained for. Bob not saying much ‑ eyebrows working overtime.


APRIL ‑ Order china, cutlery and glasses, 10 cut loaves, purchase champagne at great discount. Some members drop out, still a small waiting list.


MAY ‑ Sheila and I choose sandwich fillings, hopefully to suit all tastes. John, Robert, Esme and Peter Weller and, of course, Sheila (who is co‑ordinating everything), all offer to help. Spend every available minute planting up garden. It has rained nearly all month. More members drop out, very small waiting list. Garden finished ‑ much relief Still raining.


JUNE ‑ and the real Countdown begins.


1st.‑ Clean garden furniture. Still raining.


2nd‑ Bookham Fancy Dress Shop will make banner and balloons for THE DAY.

3rd‑ Start cleaning house.


4th‑ Carry on cleaning ‑ Bob removes cobwebs I can't reach but others will see! Sheila 'phones with more changes in Guest List.


5th‑ Disaster! John 'phones. He and Mike having meeting at School a.m. 10th re School Gates. With 2 bodies short on the day impossible to get all preparations finished. 'Phone Sheila again who whips into Leatherhead and arranges great sandwich deal with Harringtons. Cancel bread order.


7th‑ Rosemary 'phones ‑ can't come due to unforeseen church commitment. She is very disappointed. Put clean sheets back into linen cupboard.


8th‑ Shirley Green can't come. Means we can now accommodate everyone, the full 60. Have hairdo.

9th‑ To Epsom early. Helpful M & S assistant advises on strawberries. Wheel piled‑high trolley to checkout. Security guard enquires politely if I have a strawberry fetish! Check‑out man raises eyebrows. Explain about 60 for tea. Roars of laughter ‑ thinks I'm mad. Into lift to "Having a bit of a do, are we?" "Can I come?" "Hope the weather's kind". (so do I). To Ashtead to collect china ‑ it is pouring and I get very wet. Bookham Fancy Dress let me down. In desperation find suitable banner and balloons in local gift shop. Ask droopy Olive Oyl look‑alike assistant for numbers for 95 year old. Raising her weary head she enquires ",Is it for your husband?". Helpless with suppressed laughter I totter back to car clutching banner and balloons. They have no numbers. My friend Sheila kindly says "Well, you don't really look much over 90" Look in mirror ‑ hairdo resembles frizz‑ball. Feel 105! It is still pouring.

10th‑ Wake up early ‑ THE SUN IS SHINING. Sheila arrives (twice) with laden car. In quick succession the helpers come and preparations begin. By noon the banner and balloons have been hung, tables and chairs arranged around the garden, tables laid in the dining‑room, and copious cups of tea and coffee consumed. Bob and John depart to collect the sandwiches and fish and chips for the workers' lunch. Mike arrives at 1.00p.m. with magnificent birthday cake made by Sheila, Mike's wife, and we all enjoy a fairly leisurely repast in wonderful warm sunshine. The first guests arrive just before 2.30 and soon a steady crocodile wends its way across the road from The Preston Cross Hotel car park, some with folding chairs and some with raffle prizes. At 2.50 David arrives with Norman and his daughter. Norman drives through the side gate on an electric buggy to be greeted by the assembled company singing‑‑‑For he's a jolly good fellow". And he had no idea ‑ we had managed to keep it a secret. The afternoon passed incredibly quickly indeed. Old friends greeted each other with glee and sat in the garden eating and drinking happily. Mike made an impromptu speech to which Norman responded with one full of reminiscences about staff and pupils at the School during all his time there. The cake was cut, champagne toasts drunk and presentations made to a wonderful gentleman who had meant so much to so many. What a tribute to him the whole afternoon had been. And we had also been fortunate in having other members of staff with us that day. What a lucky lot we were. As Norman left he said "This has been the best day of my life". Everything planned over months had been so worthwhile. People lingered chatting to old friends until finally at about 7.30 eight of us sat in the garden, still bathed in sunshine, finished the sandwiches and agreed we had all had rather a good day. The raffle made over £ 100, only one member didn't turn up and the last load went into the dishwasher at 10.30.


11th‑ My neighbour said we must have had a very happy time as all they could hear was lots of chatting and laughter. She was right ‑ it had been super and nothing had gone wrong.


16th‑ Sheila and I went to tea with Norman and took the remains of the birthday cake for him to enjoy. We intended to stay only a little while, so as not to tire him out. Instead we stayed for two hours, had tea and fruit cake and Norman regaled us with stories about life at School ‑ and he was still as fresh as a daisy when we left. We enjoyed the afternoon enormously.


We look forward now to Norman's appearance at the Millennium lunch in our new surroundings.


My grateful thanks to all those who wrote or telephoned to say how much they had enjoyed the day. That made it even more worthwhile. We loved having you all.


Maureen Meier, Bookham, Surrey.




Stanley Bruinvels (1931‑39) got six of the best from Johnny Rivett!


Whilst I have not been a member of the Association for very long, I see

that It Is long enough for. Rosemary Dale to do a spell check on my name. It

was only to indicate what people have known for a long time and what I was

often called in those dim, distant school‑days, nonetheless, I must

point out that the result would have been different if she had added the

‘s’ at the end of my surname. In the tracing back of my lineage. I have

never found the name spelt without the 's' although in 1725 it was spelt



I would like to say that of the copies of The Dorkinian received, they were much appreciated with their varied content, bearing in mind all ages a very polished production.


Referring again to No. 16 Spring 2000, I was glad to see that you had an excellent write up by Gladys Arlett of Rosa Baigent. I knew her tolerably well, she used to play badminton at my parents house and also at the South Holmwood Club, and as stated played tennis, partnering my sister in law, and partnering my sister in the Surrey County Badminton Tournaments.


Moving on to Messrs Randall & Kerr's journalistic offerings, they both evoked strong memories. I first met Mr Rivett, the then Headmaster, when I was taken to the school by my father whom, as a result of an accident, and a long spell in hospital had decided to settle in Dorking. I was younger than most who attended the D.C.S. and to enable me to do so, I was required to spend two days taking tests. This I did, spending most of the time in the Headmasters Study. Presumably all was well because I was offered a place at the commencement of the new term.


I would like to add my observations to their Life in School. Possibly because I had been a very young boarder at a school in Essex made a difference but I thoroughly enjoyed my life at school. One of the high lights was a visit to the Ford Works at Dagenham. I can remember the long high walk ways as if it was yesterday. I expect it has all changed now.


Of the two masters that Randall mentioned, Dr Cole I recall as living at the bottom of my parents in law's garden in White Gates. He lived there for a time after Vaughan Williams. He was choir Master at St Martins Church and when I and a couple of friends went to join the Choir, the others were accepted and I was turned away having been informed that "I cannot sing a note in tune".


Jack Harper was a totally different type of person. He will always linger in my memory for a couple of reasons. The first and very foremost was his being responsible for telling me to report to the headmaster on finding my initials carved on the inside of my desk lid. That resulted in six across my bottom from Johnny Rivett.


The second thing was my everlasting thanks to him whom I got to know quite well in later life, for looking after the academic interests of my elder son for one year. He got a rather reluctant worker to become an eager one and passing his Common Entrance and on attending his new school, won prizes for his work in the first year. In my humble opinion, Jack Harper was a good man, he was fair and a good teacher.

Kerr mentions Arthur Lowndes. Good to know that he is in the land of the living. I got to know him better after school as he lived in Deepdene Gardens where we used to live until old age required that we moved 'round the corner'.


Tony Lowman and his sisters are well remembered as it was due to him that I and Donald Broyd (whom I spoke to last year) joined the local Athletic Club. A Club with which my association ended on its being amalgamated with another Club and terminating my twenty years as President.


Miss Robinson and her motor car and who cannot remember The Sydenham Girls descending upon Dorking.


Personally, if I was asked who made the greatest impression upon me whilst at school, I would say, without hesitation Norman Bradshaw ‑ Brutus. Not because he is still with us and will probably read this, not because of his teaching (1=O!!), but for his Scouting.


I do not know how I came to join the scouts, the 19th Dorking, but it is something that I have never regretted.


The self confidence it promoted, the comradeship and the Friday evening meets, the skills that we learnt (even if Dick Arthur did knock me down in the Boxing Ring!) It was all very good fun.


The week end and annual camps, Brutus repairing my foot when someone inadvertently glanced a sheath knife off a tree and into my big toe, the Scout Jamboree in Holland where I was left behind because I contracted a spot of tonsillitis and rather than go into hospital went to stay with some relatives in Amsterdam for a couple of weeks. The Windsor "Kings Scout" Parades … I could go on and on.


The most obvious benefit to this Scouting thing was when I was in the Army. On a tank Commanders course one had to know Semaphore and Morse Code and as I knew it I was a sort of quasi instructor, much less work!


In the desert it helped me in so many ways that if I went into them all it would bore everyone stiff (as I probably am doing already). One final point however, for about three months prior to my joining my Regiment, I was given a Warrant for the 10th Dorking Scout Troop‑then an Air Scout Troop ‑When I left them my Aircraft Recognition was great!!.


I could go on and on but doubtless it would only be of interest to a few {if any!) of your readers.


The trouble of getting older is that one finds it very difficult to actually get down to anything and finally when one does get down to it (such as writing a letter) one finds it rather difficult to stop.


Stopping however I am, so with kind regards to you.




Arthur Lowndes (1931‑36), with photographs


Having seen the contribution by my old friend Frank Kerr and the two cricket XI's in the Spring 2000 issue, I thought I might drop a line recalling times past. I therefore enclose two photographs of the 1936 football and cricket teams. Having written the names of the football team on the back at the time(!), I can list them:

Standing: Sanders, Barton, Lowndes, Black, Turner, Williams, Rattenbury.

Sitting: Alderton, Baple, Maynard, Somerville, Lowman.



I can still remember the names of the cricketers, except one:

Standing: Tich Maynard, Sanders, Fish Whiting, Worsfold, Black, Bob Williams,

the unknown, and Alan Pyrn.

Sitting: Tony Lowman, myself, Keith Somerville, Ossie Rattenbury, and Peter



Here are some brief notes on some of the boys as far as I can recall. The outstanding member for service in the armed forces has to be Keith Somerville who joined the RAF in 1937, served throughout the war and became a Group Captain. He was awarded the DSO, DFC and bar, and AFC, a collection of "gongs" which I am sure exceeded any other old boy of the school.


Tony Lowman was best man at my wedding and, as Frank says, we still meet from time to time. He was also a pilot in the RAF serving as an instructor in Canada and later in Bomber Command.


Another very close friend of mine was Roy Baple sitting second left in the football team. He went to Singapore and was lost after the notorious surrender to the Japanese. His father was the Headmaster of Powell Corderoy School and spent years after the war trying to find out what happened to his son, unsuccessfully as far as I know.


Bob Williams who features in the back row of both photos spent most of the war in India and the Far East and followed in his father's footsteps by becoming a school headmaster.


Seated on the far right of the cricket team is Peter Davis who was one of the best cricketers produced by the School before the war. He captained Dorking, and as far as I know still lives there.


Finally may I refer to the photograph on page 8 of Issue No. 13 of "Possibly the best cricket team the School has ever produced" which included Tony Ansell mentioned by Frank Kerr, but also "John L Teede". In fact I think this was Rupert Teede, as John was too young to be in this team. Rupert was a near contemporary of mine and I remember that he became a paratrooper and, sadly, was killed at Arnhem.


I always look forward to reading news of old pupils of the early thirties.



RALPH MANN (1937‑40) is retiring for the third time!


We plan to retire to Hook Norton in the autumn .... This will be my third retirement. I retired from full‑time teaching in 1982, when I was ordained. I retired from full‑time ministry in 1997, only to have the bishop prevail on me to take on this so‑called 'part-time' work which has in fact proved to be much more demanding than my last full‑time benefice.


It's years and years since I last visited Dorking (to preach at St. Paul's Church), but I have happy and vivid memories of the school in those exciting years 1937‑40, and of Fanny Burton, Miss Alldsworth, Miss Willcox, not to speak of Mr. Ashby who failed to teach me woodwork, Mr. Williams whose French was more intelligible than his native Welsh, Miss Huntley, Mr. Cole, Mr. Bradshaw, Mr. Newman, and the remote and inaccessible Mr. Rivers. I have a class group photograph of 3A in 1940. They were happy days, and Dorking County School was educationally miles ahead of the public boarding school to which my father had me transferred in 1940, which was still living in the nineteenth century.


p.s. Ralph wrote the above to us in April, since when he has confirmed that he will be

retiring at the end of August, and from 1st September his new address will be:


2, Whittons Close, Hook Norton, Banbury, Oxon OX15 5QG





Landmark Builder Immortalised in Bronze


One of Dorking's heroes was immortalised in May when a new bronze statue (pictured below) of the builder Thomas Cubitt was unveiled outside the Mole Valley Council Offices at Pippbrook, Reigate Road, Dorking.


Thomas Cubitt built the Denbies Mansion (now demolished) on the summit of Ranmore, but died before it was finished in 1855. He was also famed for his major public works, including several London landmarks and Osborne House, the palace on the Isle of Wight much favoured by Queen Victoria.


The statue is one of two, the other being in Pimlico in south London. They were completed in 1994 by the sculptor W. Fawke. The one in Dorking was purchased by Adrian White, the present owner of the Denbies Estate, and generously donated to the town.


New Dorking Heritage Trail

Also during May, the Heritage Trail was launched by the fixing of 'Heritage

Plaques' at various points around the town. These attractive plaques (example

pictured below) decorated with the Dorking Cockerel can be seen at 14 locations,

marking places of historical interest along two self‑guided walks intended to inform visitors and residents

of the basic facts about the town. A leaflet about the walks, sponsored by

F.W.Mays (the motor people!), can be obtained from the reception desk at the

Dorking Halls.




The yard of 16th century Inn called the Lower Chequers, changing its name to the

King's Head in recognition of the restoration of Charles II . It became an 18th century coaching

Inn but had ceased to trade by 1800. Latterly it was occupied by the builders George Arthur

& Sons until 1985 when the present shopping precinct was opened.



Names of Victims of Two World Wars Restored


Some of the names of victims of the two World Wars recorded on the Dorking War Memorial in South Street had, through the passage of time, become illegible. Now, thanks to the skilful use of black paint and cleaning of the white stone, all the engraved names stand out clearly.


Unusual Gravestone on Box Hill


If you walk among the trees along a stony flint path on the top of the west side of Box Hill you may find a curious plain gravestone with the inscription:

'Major Peter Labilliere, aged 75. An eccentric resident of Dorking was buried here head downwards. 11th July 1800'

It was alleged that he prophesied the date of his own death. On the bicentenary of his death a new book has been published entitled "Peter Labilliere, the man buried upside down on Box Hill", by James Lander ‑ who has benefited from the assistance of the major's descendants, in particular Commander A.M.D. de Labilliere and his brother, General Sir Peter de la Billiere (who commanded the British Forces in the Gulf War).


Superstore Proposal Splits the Town


Strong speculation that Sainsburys intends to submit a planning application to build a new store at the back of St. Martin's Walk has resulted in a heated debate right across the town, with no clear divide between those in favour and those against.


Rail Threat to Mole Valley?


There have been recent reports in the Press of proposals by Central Railways who want to construct a link from the Channel to the North West. Two possible routes at present with Consultants both involve our already congested area. The first would call for a new line from the Channel Tunnel towards a point east of Redhill, following the M23 and the M25 as far as Reigate Hill. It would then go into a tunnel for 7 miles, emerging between Leatherhead and Ashtead and follow the M25 round the west side of London about as far as the M40. (I have the impression that the end of the tunnel would be in the middle of 'my' golf course, so I shall oppose it! ‑ Ed.). The second possible route would involve a new line branching off the Tunbridge Wells to Reading line to the east of Dorking, linking up with the Dorking to London line at Westhumble, on to Leatherhead as far as the area around the Leisure Centre from where a new link would be created to the Leatherhead to Guildford line, continuing to Effingham Junction etc! The mind boggles.




MERRIAN LANCASTER (1963‑70) ‑ a Long Distance Walker, revisits Mole Valley


I'm a member of the Long Distance Walkers Association (LDWA) and did a 20 mile walk, the short version of a walk called the Winter Tanners, starting from a car park in Leatherhead, on 9th January this year. The first Winter Tanners (the 30 mile version), led by Alan Blatchford, one of the founders of the LDWA, took place on 11th January 1976.

I've been living and working in Milton Keynes for many years now and this was the first time I'd returned to the area where I grew up ‑ we lived in Great Bookham. The walk took me past Westhumble station, the Burford Bridge Hotel and the bottom of Box Hill. After the walk, we drove to Bookham along the lower road, past Fetcham, past St. Nicholas church in Bookham, past my old house (where I would have taken a picture but the camera battery was flat!!!!), past the station (remembering the long walk each day) and finally back to the Anchor pub, which appears in the Good Beer Guide, so had to be visited.


Great day, what memories.






Association members and Dorking Golf Club Elders who had played at Clandon Regis last autumn, were invited to play at Temple Golf Club, Hurley, Near Maidenhead, on 20th April by David Everett.


This was a venture into the unknown as far as most of us were concerned. After days of heavy rain and a morning when the weather forecast was, to say the least, not optimistic, the majority of us set off around the M25 and down the M4. Traffic conditions were horrific on the M25 and not much better on the M4. Most of us arrived just in time to meet David and his sons Alan and Michael before partaking of an excellent lunch.


As our tee times approached, it was still raining and the thought of 18 holes of golf was not particularly appealing but we were assured that it was most unlikely to be too wet for play to be abandoned on a well drained course.


At the appointed time we made our way to the first tee in the rain but after a few holes the weather brightened and we managed to complete our rounds without further ado. We played three ball games for a team prize based on the aggregate scores of the players. In addition there was a prize for the longest drive on the fairway and nearest the pin. The course played well, much better than the returned scores indicated.


An excellent evening meal was served with wine, during which there was a good deal of light hearted conversation and good humoured banter. We found it difficult to drag ourselves away from this delightful course and clubhouse and take this opportunity to say again, many thanks David for your hospitality and a splendid day out.


Team scores:

Alan Everett, Jeff Arnold and Bob Sutherland 91 points

David Everett, Colin Burbidge and David Mountain 89 points

Bernard Burbidge, John Campbell and David Jones 79 points

Michael Everett, Roger Griffiths and Harold Child 79 points


Nearest the pin David Jones


Longest drive on fairway Colin Burbidge


Our next meeting on Thursday 5th October will be at Dorking.








OLD DORKINIAN CRICKET CLUB ‑ Season 2000 Dave Wilcockson, Hon. Sec.


Despite the damp summer only two games have been cancelled because of rain, both in May. The Saturday side has struggled with six defeats and four draws, but finally won a game against Bletchingley when Andy Leopold starred with 5‑9 and scored 79 not out in a winning total of 108‑8. In contrast the Sunday side has had six wins, two draws and only two losses. The closest wins were against Chadwick and Bookham. At Chadwick the last pair of Dave Brook and Dave Wilcockson scored 48 runs for a one wicket win and at Bookham an apparent dull draw turned into an amazing win as the home side lost their last seven wickets for five runs, Richard Bennett taking 7‑35. Other good performances have been 71 by Paul Downs v Travaux, 61 by Paul Bradford v Old Tiffs., 70 by Andy Leopold at Holmbury St.Mary, 70 by Tim Hodgson at Chaldon, 63 not out by Andy Leopold at North Holmwood and 63 by David Miller at Bookham. On the bowling front five wicket hauls have come from Andy Fry v Blindley Heath, Dave Brook v Olinda Vandals, Simon McLoughlin at Ockley and Mark Longhurst v Newdigate.


The highlight of the season so far was the tour of Germany and Holland in July. All three games were won, two against Afnorth and the other at RAF Bruggen. The whole side performed well with Paul Bradford, Tim Hodgson and Andy Leopold being the pick of the batsmen and Andy Fry, Tim Beer and Murray Silby doing best of the bowlers. Thanks are due to Andy Leopold for organising the trip.




Neil Perry (1948‑51) supplies 'another gem from yesteryear!



2nd XI 1949‑50 with Mr. C W Goffin ‑ the signatures on the back of the photo are: R Durban, G Puddicombe, H Osborne, M Rowland, R P Buckley, J Stimpson, E R Allsopp, J Whitaker, A D Everett, R Moore, B Chapman, and J Stenning, and we leave you to allocate names to faces!




OLD DORKINIAN FOOTBALL CLUB Peter Mills, Press Secretary


The ODs are looking forward to the start of their 71st season, when they will continue to field five sides in the Old Boys' League and a sixth, a Veterans' XI in the Veterans' Cup Competition together with a full programme of friendlies.


The First XI will continue to compete in Senior Division 1 where last season they finished fourth in only their second season in the division, the highest position they have ever reached in the Old Boys' League. They also enjoyed a good run in the London Old Boys' Senior Cup, reaching the quarter final round before being eliminated away to premier division Old Wilsonians, losing 7‑6 in a sudden death penalty shoot‑out at the end of extra time.


The remaining league sides have all retained their places in their respective divisions


At the Club's Annual Meeting in June, Alec Hodgson stood down as Club Captain after leading the First XI to unprecedented success during the past 5 years, establishing the senior status of the club and winning 3 championships in that time. Tony Wright was elected as his successor, Hugh Cannon as Club Chairman, and Richard Sharpe as Club Secretary.


The David Houldridge Cup for the Club's top goalscorer was retained by Tony Pankhurst of the Third XI with 25 goals, followed by Jason Burgess 19, Graham Highfield 17, Chris Phillips 14, Craig Evans 12, and Darren Bond 11.


Congratulations are due to David Williams who continued as the Old Boys' League's first choice goalkeeper in their representative side, gaining a club record 15 caps with his appearance against the Yorkshire Old Boys' League at Leeds.


The Club has been honoured by being invited to host the League Representative Match against Cambridge University at Pixham on Wednesday 8th November at 2.15 pm ‑ when support will be much appreciated. The Club welcomes supporters, especially to their main Saturday fixtures at Pixham, listed below ‑ come and enjoy the games and the aftermatch hospitality!


16 September 1st v Reigatians (F) 11 November 2nd v Suttonians Res.

23 September 1st v Sinjuns 18 November 2nd v Nottsborough Res.

30 September 2nd v Wokingians Res. v Bk of England Res.***

07 October 1st v Minchendenians 25 November Ist v Tiffinians

14 October 2nd v Shene Res. v Old Grammarians****

21 October 1st v Queen Mary Coll* 02 December 2nd v Southallians Res.

28 October 2nd v Chertsey Res. 09 December 2nd v Tenisonians III

04 November 2nd v Edmontonians 16 December 1st v Enfield


*LOB. Sen. Cup **LOB. Inter Cup*** Suffey AFA Inter Cup**** Surrey AFA Sen. Cup


Those who live in the South are reminded that if they wish to follow the fortunes of our Senior XI the results can be seen by tuning to LWT Teletext on Saturday evenings after 9.30 pm, or on the Sunday following ( also published in 'The Times' on Monday.




e‑mail addresses - withheld


In the original paper version, at this point, appeared a list of email addresses.

With the passage of 7 years, most of that list is now completely changed, so I have

withheld it. (webmaster 24/09/2007)