Issue No. 11 Autumn 1997









Back to ADAReturn to Home Page   Recent NewsLetter IndexBack to Recent Newsletter Index   Older Newsletter IndexBack to Earlier Newsletter Index  





Editor’s Odds and Ends


The Chairman's Bits ‑ John Gent

Opening of Dorking County School (DCS) in 1931

First O.D. Dinner 1933

Wartime Memories ‑ Hebe Morgan

Fifth Form listings 1958-74

Sheila Fisher (nee Youdale) ‑ 1947-52

1960s Memories by Alan Gent

Ashcombe Dorkinian Golf

Fuchsias fascinate Maureen Meier

Remembering Louise McFadyen 1949-57

Remembering Dr William Cole

Remembering Miss Rigby ‑ Gillian Evans (nee Hayter)

Old Dorkinian Cricket Club ‑ Dave Wilcockson

Old Dorkinian Football Club ‑ Peter Mills





Editor's Oddsand Ends


Forthose of you who found No. 10 too lengthy (not that anyone said as much), somerelief this time ‑ but if there is more than you can take you can beselective and do not have to read every item as I do (with pleasure, ofcourse!) However, any reduction in the size of the Newsletter is probably madeup by the accompanying AGM 'paper' ‑ and in this connection please notethat if you are coming to the AGM onSaturday l l th October and wish to stay for lunch (at the White Horse) theblue form, cheque, and s.a.e. must reach SheilaSandford by 12th September.


Ourhardworking Chairman John Gent hasdone his bit ‑ but is he teasing us in modifying the heading to his partof our Newsletter?


David Earle, following his letter in theprevious issue deserves further thanks for having provoked Sheila Fisher and Alan Gent toentertain us this time. Considering the shortness of their DCGS attendances,the Gent family have taken an undue amount of space!


The Strawberry Tea went ahead on June 7th despite some alarms about lack of support until a few days beforehand, but wewere well rewarded when 23 turned up to enjoy good company in the beautiful surroundings of Maureen Meier's house and garden ‑ with weather to match! Maureen has a marvellous range offuchsias hundreds of them! ‑ and has kindly told us some of her secrets.Reports about other expertise would be very welcome.


Golfhas become a regular ADA event, thanks to HaroldChild's efforts. Recently I tried to persuade Barbara Booth (Wareham) to join us but she declined on the groundsthat she was playing in her county squad on the relevant day!


May I use Editor's privilege to mention that my sister Janet Burgess has recently moved to 530 Lakeshore Road, Cobourg, Ontario K9A 1S5. She is settling in despite being invaded by various animals and insects; she is also expecting to become a grandmother for the second time in December.


When I read Gillian Evans' appreciation of Miss Rigby I initially wondered why she remembered the occasion when Miss Rigby and Frank Hayter paddled in the sea, until I recalled that I met Dr. Trefor Jones on the beach at Middleton on Sea in 1948 and was embarrassed to see him in just swimming trunks. We did not expect our teachers to be ordinary humans, perhaps! I dread to think what he felt about my intrusion on his privacy!


Congratulations to Anthony Lockwood (one of our younger Committee Members) on his award winning designs at Chelsea and Hampton Court ‑ "Wine Outback" showed a garden created as a retreat, a place of peace and tranquillity set in the outback of Australia.


(Noaward to the Editor for his photocopied photograph!)






TheADA Bursary of £250 has been awardedthis year to Laura Timms, the DeputyHead Girl, for her academic achievements, and active participation in the lifeof the School and the wider community. We congratulate Laura on her award, andon obtaining A grades in all her A‑levels ‑ English, History,French and General Studies. We wish her well reading English at King's College,Cambridge, this autumn, and hope to hear from her this time next year!


Mythanks to all contributors, and in the words of Radio 4's Feedback: "Keepit coming”.


David Mountain August1997

65 Broadhurst, Ashtead,Surrey KT2I 1QD (01372 273227)





1       12th September ‑ closing date for receipt of blue form, chequeand sae re AGM

2       AGM ‑Saturday 11th October 1997‑ please see attachedpapers.

3       Golf Day ‑ Thursday 9th October 1997 ‑ at Fernfell Golf andCountry Club, Cranleigh –

regret that entries havealready closed, but please contact Harold Child

(01306 885831) if you wish to participate next time.

4       Copy for next Newsletter to the editor by 9th April 1998, please.





The Newsletter of the Old Pupils'Association of the Dorking High School for Boys,

Dorking High School for Girls, DorkingCounty School, Dorking County Grammar School,

Mowbray School, Archbishop LangtonSchool and the Ashcombe School


The Chairman'sBit


I make no apologies for the blatant and quiteobvious historical, even nostalgic slant to my contribution to this Autumn'sNewsletter. But hopefully there will be something which appeals to most of you and gives interest to all. We are lucky tohave been given access to a few archives which up to now have been kept at the school. I was surprised that there weren't that many, which makes what wehave reproduced here even more poignant. Unfortunately they will be movedshortly to Woking for 'safe keeping'.




We have reproduced a reduced copy of the spreadgiven by the Advertiser to the opening of the Dorking County School in 1931.You will see that even then there was an article entitled 'Old Dorking ‑A Tour of the Town a Century Ago'. Click here to see


We have also reproduced a copy of the menu of the 1st Annual Dinner of the Old DorkinianAssociation held at the White Horse Hotel in 1333. (Click here to see) This year, quite fortuitously, weshall also be holding our Reunion Lunch at the White Horse. But more of thatlater.


WartimeMemories (courtesyof Hebe Morgan)


Hebe wrote an article which was aired in the 1972Dorking County Grammar School Annual Magazine 'Vista'. Thank you Hebe! (Click here to see)


Where Are TheyNow?


I hope you will be able to read the names in thelist of 5th Formerstaken from the Dorking Grammar School (yes, the word 'County' was missing!)'School Report', for the years 1958 to 1974. It should enable you to piecetogether a list of your particular year. I'd welcome copies of other years sothat we can print them in future issues of the Dorkinian. (Click here to see the lists)


The ChemistryLab., R.I.P.


By the time you read this, the Old ChemistryLaboratory will unfortunately be no more. On the invitation of the Headmaster,Mr Webster, we took some photographs before the refurbishment started and thesewill be available for viewing and possible purchase at the Reunion. I did lookbut there wasn't any graffiti worth photographing! Although it is progress theother new labs don't have the character which was so evident in the old labs. It isinteresting to note that Mr Webster had a letter from one of the present 13‑yearold pupils commiserating on the passing of the Lab!


The 1997Reunion/AGM


This year we are emphasising that it is a Reunionwith the AGM rather than the other way about. It will be held on Saturday 11th October and a timetable is included with thisNewsletter. We have negotiated a very good price for lunch at the White Horse,which includes a glass of wine, and I do hope we shall get a 'goodly number' ofyou attending.


John Gent








EPSOM LITTLE, THEATRE‑Boxing Daytill January 2nd. Seven nights, at eight o'clock. Matinees Boxing Day andJanuary 2nd at 2.30. "Ambrose Applejohn's Adventure," an ideal playfor the holidays.

Cast includes Dorothy Black, FaithLiddle, Earle Grey and Nigel Clarke. Booking at Andrews, South Street, andLittle Theatre Office, 8 West Street, Epsom (Epsom 9854).


AN APPOINTMENT. ‑ Mr. W. J. Comerhas been appointed an assistant master at St. Paul's C. of E. School. Mr. Comerwas previously an assistant at Wiveliscombe School, Somerset.

He will take charge of the sports atSt. Paul's, in which he is specially interested. He was educated at TauntonSchool. and 'whilst there he was second in the Public Schools' Cross‑Country Championship.

He is also a keen "Rugger"player, and hopes to have an opportunity of enjoying this game in Dorking.


A SCHOOL EXHIBITION‑Aninteresting‑ ‑‑‑"Open Day" and exhibition ofschool work took place at St. Paul's C. of E. School last week. About 100parents and friends were present. and these showed their real interest by examining their books and freelydiscussing with the teachers the progress or otherwise of their children. Thevalue of this in the work of the school is, of course, enormous and is welcomed.

Probably the outstanding feature of the exhibition was the high standard of handwork, which was a great source ofinterest. The girls' needlework and cookery created interest amongst themothers whilst the boys' colourwork and woodwork were admired by all. Childrenwere at work whilst the visitors walked round, in order that those interestedcould see how things were done. The infants surprised the visitors by theirexcellent display of fancy work and the production of attractive Christmas cards of outstanding merit Even the essay writing was notneglected, and parents read with interest and amusement many of the essays that were exhibited on the walls.









A pleasant afternoon was spent by thescholars, parents and friends of Ebor House School, Dorking, in the Oddfellows'Hall on Saturday, when the scholars gave an entertainment, the proceeds ofwhich were in aid of Dr. Barnardo's Homes There was a large audience and theefforts of the little ones were greatly appreciated. The programme was of avaried nature, and all the items were very well rendered. In their histrionicefforts, however, the children reached the height of their success. Theypresented a play entitled "The Gift" It was an admirable choice on thepart of the Misses Pitts and their staff, and the little ones presented it ina manner calling for the highest praise. Their diction was outstandingly good,and the sympathy and restraint shown were exceptional for so young a band ofperformers.

Here are the characters and the namesof the children playing them:‑ Jan (Jean Cox); Priscilla (Valerie Halse)………









The Dorking County School, erected bythe Surrey Education Committee, as a beautiful new home for an amalgamation ofthe Dorking High School for Boys and the Dorking High School for Girls, wasformally opened on Saturday by the Right Hon. H. A. L. Fisher, Warden of NewCollege, Oxford, the former President of the Board of Edu­cation. A largecompany of residents of the Dorking district assembled in the School Hall tomeet Mr Fisher, and members of the Surrey Education Committee, theGovernors and Headmaster of the School. The autumn term just ending has beenthe first term of the new school at its excellently equip­ped and spaciouslyplanned buildings off Ashcombe‑road.

The proceedings onSaturday afternoon began with the singing of the National Anthem. Prayer byBishop GoldingBird (Assistant Bishop of Guildford and Archdeacon of Dorking)followed.


Then the Vice‑Chairman of theGovernors, Mr. J. F. Jeal, C.C., addressed the assembly. He said their greatregret that afternoon was the absence of the Rev. T. R Grantham theChairman of the Governors. Mr Grantham had written a letter telling of hisdisappointment in not being able to attend the opening ceremony, and Mr. Jealread his letter. "We owe a great debt," stated Mr. Grantham in hisletter "to the Surrey Education Committee for providing Dorking with somagnificent a set of buildings which are in every way worthy of the town."Mr. Jeal. recalled that he was an old boy of the School, and he took his memoryback to the School's early days. It was appropriate, he said, that they shouldremember those idealists of the 80's and 90's of the last cen­tury had to unifyand harmonise the methods of two different schools. I think we have done thatto all astounding degree during term. We have 230 boys and girls in the schoolalmost equally divided between the sexes.”




Mr. Rivett said he did not propose to talk about the merits or demerits of co­education.All that he would say was that he had been struck by the astonishing naturalness of the whole thing. The aims and ideals of the school could be summed up by the declaration that they were doing their best to turn out good men and women, good citizens able to take a their part in the work of the community. ‑‑"And I shall be quitecontent to have our work characterised as a failure if boys and girlsleft without a capacity to learn", declared Mr. Rivett. "We want todevelop in vie children consideration for other people ‑ a thing which isnot too common in these days and consideration for the property of otherpeople. In a word we would try to make these children unselfish." Mr.Rivett ended with a few words of thanks to the parents for their co‑operation.



The Right Hon. H. A. Fisher said theSurrey Education Committee had done wonders for education in this coun­ty' Onlyon the previous day he was at Godalming speaking at a new second­aryschool there almost as magnificent in its proportions, and as perfect inits equipment as the Dorking school. It was a great thing for the inhabitants of a county to have placed before them in so signal and striking a manner thedignity and the importance of education…...


... of their school high. May it be said“We can trust the products of the Dorking County School. We know in advancethat they will be well dressed well mannered, well behaved. They will betruthful, sane, well balanced, they will be industrious and thorough in their job and they will work even when the eye of theemployer is not upon them.‑‑‑ Ending, Mr. Fisher said."I have always felt that any country which provides a free career totalent, which provides educational institutions so arranged that no child,however humble in situation, however poor may be his or her home, is debarredfrom rising to the highest places in the state. That such a country isestablished on a firm foundation. There is no real reason for social bitternessif ample opportunities are given to the young and that is what every wisestatesman should seek to provide. That is why I so heartily associate myselfwith the admirable work which the Surrey Education Committee is doing in theprovision of secondary education in the county."


Calling upon Alderman F. E. Lemon(Chairman of the Surrey Education Committee), to propose a vote of thanks. Mr.Jeal said Alderman Lemon was very largely responsible for providing that schoolfor Dorking.




Alderman Leman proposed a vote of thanks to Mr. Fisher andBishop Golding‑Bird. He referred to the linking of the two old schools inthe new school. He hoped that the connection with the old schools would be verydefinitely continued. He noticed earlier that afternoon …….







DorkingRotarians have had as their guest attheir luncheons last week and this, a fellow townsman, Mr. A. H. Lyne, the popular Secretary of the local Chamber of Commerce Mr. Lyne has interested himself in the collection of facts concerningDorking's history, and he interested the Rotarians on Tuesday last week andagain on Tuesday this week with selections from that collec­tion. He touchedbriefly upon the earli­est history of Dorking and the neighbourhood.and then he made a tour of the principal streets in the town, tell­ingsomething of the history of the present buildings or of the site upon whichpresent buildings stand. The following is a selection from Mr. Lyne'scollection of local history facts which he has gathered together under thetitle of "Scissors and Paste."


Aubrey records that Dorking market was well supplied with fish, and that handsome women were rare, most being of a mealy complexion. A cherry fair was held on the last Sunday in July at the "Fox"Inn, Ranmore (now destroyed), and Evelyn states that an excellent cherry wine wasmade locally. Hops were grown in 1747 on Chapel Land, Westhumble. A vineyardexisted on the slopes of Chart Park. In1750, the people of Horsham petitioned Parliament for a good road to Dorking.

They pleadedthat they had to travel along the coast to Canterbury to reach London. In 1755,a Turn‑pike Act was passed for making a road from Horsham toDorking via Capel. The toll house stoodnear Harrow road.




For atour of old Dorking, the town was entered at the London‑road end. At thecorner of Reigate‑road stood the old blacksmith'sshop with the 16th century cottages which still exist. Facing them were"Ivy Holt" (destroyed. 1929‑30) and "LonsdaleHouse," once an inn, and for many years the residence of Dr. Blakeney. Theold house opposite, now a breweryoffice, was a grammar school, kept by Mr. James Moore, after whom Moores‑roadwas named. Shrub Hill House, built in the reign of Charles I, stood on the siteof High‑street Buildings. The only remaining portion is occupied byMessrs. Wood and Phillips, in whose premises some fine plaster work can be seenon the staircase walls and also old doors and oak floors. The house wasoccupied by the Countess of Rothes, whosehusband, the Earl died suddenly whilehunting in Betchworth Park in 1817. Their daughter, Lady Elizabeth Wathen,lived here for many years, and did much good work in the town. The kitchengarden was on the other side of the road and stretched to the Mill Pond.




Walker's Carriage Factory stood where Messrs. Smith's Popular Stores are today. In those daysDorking was a great coaching centre. Mr. Israel Walker drove a daily coach toLondon until 1840. The “Surrey Yeoman” was probably so called because LordRothes was at that time the first Colonel of the Surrey Yeomanry. A right of way ran at one time through the inn to Cotmandene and a ……





Dorking's new Secondary School, known as the Dorking CountySchool, was formally opened on Saturday by the Rt. Hon. H. A. L. Fisher, aformer President of the Board of Education. He and others gave some soundadvice about the way the school should build a tradition worthy of itself andworthy of the schools which it has replaced ‑the High School for Boys andthe High School for Girls ‑both of which did wonderful work in spite ofexceptional difficulties. Dorking has secured its County School just in timebefore the national crisis compelled a review of the position with a view tocheaper construction. There is nothing cheap and shoddy at the Dorking School.It is a worthy monument to the importance of education. The well designed anddignified buildings; are themselves an educational influence. Several of thespeakers at Saturday's opening ceremony referred to the co‑educationsystem under which the school is organised. None criticised the system. but Mr.Fisher, and one or two others spoke of the co‑education system as beingexperimental. Co‑education is of course experimental in secondary schoolsbut not in elementary schools. And children are born into coeducational familylife and life after school days is co-educational.


A noticeable feature of entertainments organised in Dorking oflate years has been the higher standard demanded by local audiences. This fact has, ap­parentl , not escaped the notice of"“outsiders," for writing in theConcert Notes of the December 13th issueof the “Sunday Referee” “Claudin” says- "Much praise is due to the Dickenstown of Dorking for having embarked during the last few years on the very saneand sound policy of booking professional artistes and bands for its concerts,dances, and other social functions. Previous to that local talent was reliedupon, but the organisers realised, in common with many other places outsideLondon, that it is better from the point of view of enjoyment and artisticsuccess to spend more money and engage people whose profession it is toentertain the public. It is a far‑sighted policy, .and I am sure willresult in good financial as well as artistic results. Much of it is due to theinitiative of the Chairman of tile Dorking Branch of the British Legion, whowas the pioneer of the happy thought in this respect. In addition, some of theinfluential people in Dorking have recently erected a very modern building, calledthe New Halls, which comprises three halls of varying sizes suitable for allfunctions and equipped with up‑to‑date lighting, platforms. andcomfortable dressing‑rooms. I congratulate Dorking, ant] hope other townswill follow its excellent example."



In preparing the programme for the forthcomingproduction of "Ruddigore", the Dorking andDistrict Amateur Operatic and Dramatic Society have generously allotted an advertising space in which to draw the public's attention to the great Carnival Week which is to be held in Dorking next June for the benefit of the Hospital.







Dorking County School





Old Dorkinian Association - First Annual Dinner in December 1933




Old Dorkinian Association.


1st Annual Dinner


      AT THE





On Saturday, December 2nd. 1933










Past‑Presidents of the Dorking High School

Old Boys' Association.



1906 J. F. JAAL               1923 S. STRONG.

1907 J. P. ALEXANDER 1924 C. J.IVERY

1908 J. E. JAY                1925 J. BUCK. O.B.E. M.A.

1909 H. L. MOORE        1926 H. COOKE

1910 F. SANDERS          1927 G. E. COLLINS

1911 H. O. BECKETT    1928 D.G.RIX

1912 A. G. ASKEW         1929 A. G. PIPER


1914 A. E. PIPER           1931 J. E. BRADLEY

1922 J. C. EDE. J.P. C.C. 1932 R. 8. SCRACG



. 7 .


. Artistes.














































































"Tranquil you lie, your knightly virtues proved,

Your memory hallowed in the land you loved.’"















KAY, W. H.














Toast List.








The School.


Proposed by the VICE-‑PRESIDENT.




MR. A. J. RIVETT, B.A., B.Sc.


The Old Dorkinian Association.


Proposed by






The Guests.


Proposed by MR. G. CLIFTON.

Response: MR. E. W. WALKER.


The Artistes MR. J.W.G. BLACKMAN

























































I was one of the favoured few whostarted at what was then Dorking County School in the October following thebeginning of the Second World War. October because the school was onlypermitted to have on the premises asmany people as there were air‑raidshelters for, and it took time to build them.


It doesn't surprise me that the shelters have stood the testof time so well. One of my earliest recollections, as a ten‑year‑old,is of watching the concrete being poured in by workmen. I was yet to discoverthat I was expected to go and sit in them when the siren started to wail. Andsit in them we did!


One could be glad of the interruption in a boring lesson; buttrying to balance a congealing dinner on one's knee while the pudding waited inthe dining room was not so funny. All the same ‑ and such is theadaptability of the human race ‑ it is interesting to remember that,through intensive practice, it eventually became a matter of pride to be able to evacuate the schoolin three minutes flat. Except, of course, for people in the science labs at thefront of the building, who seldom heard the siren if the wind was blowing inthe wrong direction. The fire‑bell, for us, had a very urgent sound.


Going to school in war‑time offers plenty ofopportunity, later on, for reminiscence. Paper, for instance, was notonly in short supply; bringing it or the raw materials to Britain cost lives,and the quality declined as the years wore on. Though wenever (as was threatened from time to time) had to return to the days of slatesand squeaky pencils.


School dinners were there to be eaten! The plate was put infront of you, and not liking it was no excuse. I've often wondered since whythe meat fat sometimes had green dye marking in it; rumour had it that it meant'unfit for human consumption', but school dinners always take it on the chin,anyway. The fact is that the scraps from a table of perhaps thirty pupils wouldbarely fill one plate.‑ if it did there was a visit from a senior memberof staff, and on the whole it was easier to eat it and keep quiet.


War means staff changes. The young men go off to fight, andsome of the young women too; the average age of the staff goes up as morepeople come out of retirement, and you are left with a shifting population.From memory, there were over sixty staff changes during the war years; not theideal way to run a school, though I don't think it did us much harm in the longrun.


My first form, in the gentle and disciplined hands of MissBurton ('Burton’s Babies', all of us!), was a strange hotch‑potchof nationalities. We talk today about immigrant children and the problems theycreate; our class was a mixture of local youngsters, evacuees from London, andrefugees (mainly Jewish) from Germany. The latter group had a hard struggle tocope with the language; and, looking back it can't have been too easy for theteaching staff, either. With the ignorance of extreme youth, it never occurredto us that these foreign children had just been through a totally shatteringexperience; and I have no recollection that we did anything more dramatic thanshake down together into a situation which seemed completely normal to us.


I wonder if others who were at D.G.S. in 1940 would agree thatone of the most stirring episodes was the retreat from Dunkirk?I can remember the extreme excitement as hospital trains full of heavilybandaged men and attendant nurses came from the Kent coast, past the playingfields on the Deepdene line. Each time one went by, every class on that side ofthe building rushed to the windows to wave and cheer ‑ and quite a lot ofit was heart‑felt emotion, even if some was sheer opportunism!


There were other things too. Endless convoys of tanks rumblingdown Ashcombe Road at certain times during the war; dog‑fights overheadduring the Battle of Britain; the girl who brought a real banana to school andlet us look at it; school certificate exams held in a basement in the townduring the 'doodle‑bug' period in 1944. And the solemnity of theannouncements in Assembly when some past member of the school was reportedkilled in action ‑ unknown to us little ones, but sadly missed by thestaff and pupils who remembered them working and playing in the school sorecently. Our sixth‑formers could be school‑boys on Friday anduniformed members of the forces by the following week.


Gas masks! What proportion of them, I wonder, would have beenany use at all if the expected gas attacks had materialised? All the same, youhad to carry the wretched things, and if you came to school without your gasmask ... well, you simply had to go home again and get it, at least in theearly days. Oneupmanship was in having a better gas mask case than anyone else;and total horror for the staff must have been the regular testing sessions. Picture if you can thirty children, each one wearing a mask like apig's snout; 'teacher' going round with a postcard, holding it to each snout inturn. If the postcard stayed on the end of the snout when the 'pig'breathed in, you were all right. I never discovered what would happen if thecard dropped off. As far as we were concerned, the object of the exercise wasto see how many revolting noises we could make by blowing air through therubber sides.


Wars are disruptive things; but we got our 6/7/8 schoolcertificate subjects in due course, and went on to get our 2/3/4 highercertificate subjects. And some of us went into the forces, and some to artschools and universities, and some to teacher training (or married the musicmaster!) And some of have seen our own children go to D.G.S., though insomewhat different circumstances than the ones we knew. Whether it was born ofwar‑time cameraderie or not, most of us have a very soft spot for the oldplace.


                         HEBE MORGAN (nee BLAKE). Pupil 1939 ‑1947




Lists of members of Fifth Forms from 1958 - 1974





SheilaFisher (nee Youdale) 1947‑1952


Two things activated me into writing to The Dorkinian, one was the letter from David Earl and the other was the news of Miss Rigby's death at the grand oldage of 91.


I will start with Miss Rigby. I now live in the village of Winscombe in Somerset, 4 miles from Cheddar Gorge and Sidcot School, where Miss Rigby started her teaching career, is just up the hill at the top of the village on the A38. That set me thinking about school life in general and, in particular, the part that Miss Rigby played in my school life at Dorking Grammar. I remember her as a strict disciplinarian but with a sense of fair play and a kindness that showed through if anyone had personal problems, eg serious illness or bereavement.


Do you remember indoor and outdoor shoes? On one occasion, when going to change myshoes on going home, I found, to my dismay, that my outdoor shoes were not in my locker. I panicked and was then informed by a smirking prefect that they would be in Miss Rigby's office. Off I went with sinking heart to find dozens of pairs of shoes littering the floor in her room.I stammered out that I was sent to find my shoes to be given a long lecture on the seriousness of not having my name inside the said shoes and would I findthem, mark them and bring them back the next day for inspection. Finding themwas easier said than done with several pairs of similar lace up shoes to choosefrom.


On another occasion I went to school on a rainy day wearing a rain hat instead of the regulation school hat. It was not raining when I went home and found that I had forgotten to take my school hat with me. Walking home over the 14 stepbridge (sadly no longer there now) and down the Rec I was overtaken by Miss Rigby who demanded to know why I was not wearing a hat. I explained the situation and to my dismay, and the merriment of my friends (who didn't dare snigger at the time) I was told to wear my rain hat home. Luckily I lived just at the bottom of the Rec so didn't have far to go.


David Earl's letter reminded me, too, that life was not all a bed of roses. I presume you, David, are the son of Mr Earl, my old headmaster at Powell Corderoy (I am a few years older than you, of course). Do you remember having to wait at table in your third to fifth years? I always seemed to get second dinners, waiting on the staff table, when Trefor Jones and Miss Rigby had their meal. The first time I did it, being knee‑high to a grasshopper, it was very difficult handing a full glass jug of water over the heads of the seated staff onto the table. The inevitable happened, of course,the jug tipped slightly and cold water ran down Miss Moore's back. She was wearing a lacy jumper at the time and, although it was summertime, she didn't appreciate it. My French was never that good and she did gabble at me. I had another encounter with Miss Moore, literally, when I jumped the last flight of stairs to the girl's cloakroom and she came around the corner to ascend the same stairs. Once again I didn't understand her French butI think she was a bit annoyed.


Onemore coincidence I must tell you about. When we moved to Winscombe 14 years ago, I was talking to our new next door neighbour and inevitably we touched on where we had lived before. It transpired that she, too, was an old Dorking Grammar girl although she started after I had left. Nevertheless most of the same staff were there when she was and it made for a good introduction. She came from Shere and here name is Rita Hinton (nee Freeland) her sister Wendy also went to the school. I cannot persuade her to become a Dorkinian but if anyone recognises her and would like to get in touch,please let me know. *


Having started reminiscing, I could go on and on but I think that is enough for starters. I hope these few anecdotes bring back happy (or otherwise) memories for some of you.


Sheila Fisher (nee Youdale)cousin to the other three Youdales.



*Havingjust perused my 1995 Membership List I have spotted Rita's name on it!






Alan D Gent (1960‑62) writes from 140 TreebyRoad, ANKETELL 6167, Western Australia


I thought it about time I put 'pen to paper' as my first proper contribution to "The Dorkinian".


I'd like to tell you about the terrific weather, the healthy lifestyle and the friendly people in this great country, but you'd only get bored, so I’ll save it for another time. I've also made a bit of a promise to tell you about our camping trips across the Nullarbor, across to Sydney and to Darwin, from Perth, but it would take several pages. I'll indulge, like most of your contributors, in a bit of nostalgia ‑ but I won't try to gloss over the truth! I was inspired by. David Earle's contribution, and the realisation that I'm not the only one who hasn't at least become Master of the Game as a result of Stirling efforts while at school!


Before Istart on my short 'nostalgia trip, I must say: how, disappointed, I am that not a single person on the membership list‑ apart from the teachers ‑was in any of my classes in school.! Of course, I was only there from 1960 to 1962; Janet Roodbol‑Birkin mentioned 'Jet Thatcher', though. If it's the same fellow, he lived on Spital Heath and was the son of a sergeant Thatcher. I played guitar with him briefly, and I think he was a good friend. But what happened to Chris Jeater, Terry Main, Dick Stevens, Sheila Bowry, Graham Gibbs, Brian Sinton, Christine Russell, Anne Colbert or Michael Sanders? I sincerely hope they have all become captains of industry, lawyers etc. I bet they don't remember me.


I can't honestly say I enjoyed my time at Dorking. Probably my own fault really. If I'd played sport, like Andy Lobb, I could have got away with murder, as he did in Brute's class, instead of being accused of 'scribbling' in a maths exercise book, which I was 'illegally' using for rough work because I was so anxious to hand in a decent copy for homework. I remember his saying: "You're a rebel Gent!". No, I did not get on with Brute. He was of the 'old school', you see, with entrenched 'teacher' attitudes I've successfully been able to overcome since becoming a TAFE (Technical and Further Education) 'co‑ordinating' lecturer in electronics and computing subjects to the Australian Navy.


Of course, school did have its fun times, and those are the ones we try to remember. Like little 'Nobby' Clark doing his demos at the front of the chem lab, wondering why the bunsen went out. "They're working on the gas line again, Sir". Not really. We were madly blowing down the gas pipes with rubber tubes left under the benches. Like Doc Morgan wondering why his classes couldn't simply appreciate theMusic as he could, instead of taking every opportunity his back was turned to throw chair stoppers at one another. Or like gazing in awe at 'pop' Shepherd telling 'rat' Howard the reason for laminated cores of transformers. Actually 'rat' (horrible nickname, and quite ill‑deserved‑ he wasn't too bad, despite his dislike for slide‑rules!) was really good at getting over words he couldn't spell. He'd dictate as he wrote, and just end with a wiggly line on the board. When asked, he'd simply say: 'Well, if you weren't listening, I'm not going to repeat it!" On the subject of nick‑names, one of the more innocuous was 'Fred' Ashby. He was one of the best teachers, with his "gather raoondnaoow chaps" (what was that: a Gloucestershire accent?), but I wonder if it was his nickname, which he hated being repeated by students, that caused the altercation with one of them. Mr. Johnston (who should have been placed in quite a different institution) asked the student why he was outside his door. "I've just struck Mr. Ashby, Sir"."Well," said Mr. Johnston uncharacteristically, "you'd better go and cool off then!"


SO what have I done since leaving Dorking? Not much really. I went on to get a degree in Australia, where I emigrated as a '£10 Pom' in 1969, (the second best decision I ever made ‑the first was getting married to my wife, Terry) and later got my Graduate Diploma in Education. I have been a Technical Support Manager at Fujitsu, whereI started learning Japanese, National Service Manager for Photo & Video at Canon in Sydney, and various other sales/sales manager positions before 'following my Father's footsteps', and becoming a teacher. My wife and I are building a house in Perth, where our winters are similar to English summers, and I’m sorry to tell you, don't miss England at all. I've been on TV with a device I invented for Cerebral Palsy sufferers, so I've had my 'fifteen minutes of fame'.


ironically, it'sreally my experience at schools, like Dorking that strongly influences my own teaching methods. There's a lot of things wrong with the education system over here, but I teach the way I'd like to have been taught. "Do As You Would Be Done By' in the words of Charles Dickens. I'm still the 'rebel'that Brute accused me of being, all those years ago. I still 'tilt at windmills', with a little success. Still, they say "those that can, do, and those that can't, teach".


I must admit, meeting one of the teachers later in life is an enlightening experience. After reading in the 'Dorkinian' that Doc & Hebe Morgan lived in Yanchep, about an hour's drive away, I contacted them, and was lucky enough to be invited to Doc's birthday party last year. They're really nice people. What a difference, and a pleasure, to meet a real human being instead of a 'teacher'. Tragically, teachers still put a 'wall' up between themselves and their students, and students are never likely to know the human being underneath.


If anybody would like me to write about life in Oz, a trip across the Nullarbor etc. please let me know. And no, I don't follow 'the cricket' ‑ I'd rather watch my nails grow. Apart from beating Jet Thatcher in the school cross‑country, I had, and still have, very little interest in sport, which sets me right apart from 99% of this country.


(So sorry, Alan, to follow you with golf!)




ASHCOMBE DORKINIAN GOLF - HaroldChild, calling all golfers


Once again ten members of the Association met together at Dorking Golf Club on 13th May 1997 for the association's spring golf day. The venue was particularly suitable as Dorking Golf Club arecelebrating their centenary year.


We were able to welcome Don Broyd in addition to most of our regularplayers, although some were taking early holidays or for other reasons wereunable to attend.


The day followed its usual format and the weather was kind enough to make us linger long enough on the verandah after the evening meal, to ensure sufficient stories were told. The story of the day being about one of our players, who shall remain nameless, who had excelled himself during the round by launching his golf ball at the greenkeeper's tractor, successfully breaking the windscreen.


Results for the Stableford competition were:


Winner Roger Griffiths

Runner ‑ up Harold Child

Best front 9 holes BernardBurbidge

Best back 9 holes DavidMountain

Drawn Pairs Don Broyd and Roger Griffiths


The autumn meeting will take place on Thursday 9th October at Fernfell Golfand Country Club, Cranleigh but entries have already closed.


If you are interested in joining future events and require information,please call Harold Child on 01306 885831.




FUCHSIAS. ‑ Maureen Meier


I have always had a fascination with fuchsias ever since I lived in Cornwall as a child, I usedto pop their flowers as I walked past gardens to watch their ballerina‑likeskirts open. It was not, however, until 1980 that I actually joined the Dorking & District Fuchsia Group (incidentally the oldest local society in England), and became thoroughly hooked. Since then I have grown, shown and hybridised these lovely plants, and when our Editor visited me some weeks ago he asked if I would write an article for the magazine ‑ so here it is! For those who enjoy gardening I hope it will be interesting, for those who do not ‑ my apologies.


Many people start growing fuchsias by visiting their local garden centre and buying a small (or large), plant in the early spring. Whilst these days there is more variety to choose from than when I started in 1980, it would still be a good idea to seek out your nearest specialist fuchsia grower who will be able to offer you much more choice of variety to grow and also be able to give advice on suitability for your purposes. As there are now over 10,000 varieties available, it would not be feasible for the ordinary garden centre to stock very many but for the specialist nursery it is their living and one on which they have great knowledge. The British Fuchsia Society will be only too happy to provide you with a list covering your area.


Fuchsias are basically garden shrubs, and while some (over 150) are hardy, the majority are half‑hardy and need the shelter of a greenhouse (preferably heated to just above freezing), during the winter. The hardy varieties need little or no help in the garden provided they come through their first winter. Bought plants should not be planted out until the 3rd week of May and then may be planted at the front or back of a border, depending on their ultimate height. At the time of planting, fuchsias should be planted about 3 inches below the level of the soil so that they have more chance of making a solid root system during the summer and therefore be more able to withstand any possible severe winter conditions. For the first season they should be kept well‑watered to build up a strong root system ‑ thereafter they should need little attention. They are happiest planted in semi‑shade as their delicate flowers tend to scorch in full sun but, provided they are given plenty of water, they willtolerate sunny conditions. Variegated‑leafed plants are best planted where they will see a reasonable amount of sun to keep the variegation at its best.


Half‑hardy plants can also be planted in the garden but must be dug up and brought into the greenhouse for the winter. They are at their best if planted on their own in troughs, largepots, urns, half or full baskets. They look best if more than one plant of the same variety is planted together; for example, in a 14 inch hanging basket, instead of the more usual selection of some trailing geraniums, petunias, helichrysum, topped by a single fuchsia, ‑ how much more eye‑catching is a basket of one variety giving a lovely display all the same colour. Kept fed, watered and 'dead‑headed', the basket will remain in flower for many weeks and can be taken into the greenhouse for safe‑keeping during the winter. The number of plants in a container will obviously vary but as general guide here are my suggestions:


6 inch hanging pot 1 plant

8 inch hanging pot 3 plants

10 inch up to 16 inch anything from 4 to 8plants

hanging pot or basket accordingto size of container.


This also applies to troughs, urns,etc., the more plants that will grow happily in container, the better will be the display.


Compost and feeding play a very important part in growing good plants. Over theyears I have worked out what best suits my plants ‑ I use John Innes No. 2 compost ( the brand I find best is made by Wessex), 2/3rds mixed with 1/3rd from a good peat‑based'Gro‑bag' (cheaper than bales of peat and it already has some fertiliser in it), plus a handful of Chichester grit which is better than sharp sand. This is mixed well together and used for everything from taking cuttings to planting‑up my very large standards and baskets. It is all replaced every spring when the season starts again. Old compost will not help your plants to grow well nextyear.


Fuchsia growers mostly use a fertiliser made by Chempak ‑ normally their`No. 3'. This comes in the form of blue granules in a blue box and is diluted (very economically), and used by fuchsia growers at half strength throughout the growing season. Obviously, a rooted cutting will need very little water but as the plants are potted‑upinto ever larger pots, their root systems will need more and more feed. Chempak No. 3 is a balanced fertiliser and will keep fuchsias green and flowering during the summer. Fertilisers like "Tomorite" and "Phostrogen"are intended to ripen plants quickly and to harden them off, consequently as fuchsias grow flowers at the end of their branches, if these branches are encouraged to harden too quickly, the flowering time of the plant will slow down and eventually stop far too early. Feeding with "No. 3" ensures softer growth right up to the first frosts which in a mild autumn might be as late as November.


Half‑hardy fuchsias can be left out until the frosts have removed their leaves ‑ thereby saving you the trouble of taking them off ‑ and are then taken into the greenhouse having first cut the plants back by half and removed any remaining leaves. This ensures that no bugs are taken into the greenhouse where they can thrive in the warmth and multiply to give you considerable trouble in the spring. The plants should be kept damp during the winter, not allowing them to dry out or be over‑watered, as advocated by some I could name, and, of course, frost free ‑ just above 32 degrees is usually sufficient More fuchsias are lost by over or under‑watering than through frost


Growing fuchsias well is an enormoussubject to cover and I am not able to do it justice here. There are very many books available if you are sufficiently interested. Wisley stocks a vast range and the following are the ones I would recommend as being particularly good:


Growing Fuchsias by Carol Gubler Price £4.99 (approx.)

Fuchsias for House and Garden

by George Bartlett £6.95

Fuchsias ‑a colour guide

by George Bartlett £20.00

FuchsiaLexicon by Ron Ewart £17.00


I hope this article will be of interest to some of you. I have touched on only a fraction of what we 'nuttyfuchsia people' do but if anyone would like any more information, you could either ring me (01372‑457407), or get in touch with the Hon. Secretary ofthe British Fuchsia Society Peter Darnley (01562‑66688), or the Hon. Assistant Secretary, Carol Gubler (01252‑29731),or go to your nearest Fuchsia Show and see for yourself! Shows are held throughout the country during July, August and early September, details areusually given in the popular gardening magazines.


                            Maureen Meier

                            (Ex‑Chairman Dorking & District Fuchsia Group)



Louise Cooper (nee McFadyen)‑ 1949‑57


A few weeks ago we received the sadnews from Sue Shorthouse (Hayes, 1951‑56) thatLouise had died in February this year. You may recall that we published a"Potted History" from Louise in Newsletter 9 last September illustratingthe very busy and rewarding life she had lived, and was still managing despitebeing quite unwell at the time. If anyone would like a copy of her articleplease contact the Editor.




Dr. William Cole


Many members will have read with sadness recent reports in the national press of the death at the age of 87 of Dr. William Cole. For those who missed the news here is a memory from Peter Mills.


Dr. Cole was appointed music master at Dorking County School when it opened in 1931, and retained this post until he left in the early years of the war to join the Air Ministry where he was involved in aircraft production.


His arrival at the school coincided with his appointment as organist and choirmaster at St. Martin's Church, and the school provided a fertile recruiting ground for members of the choir. Boys were expected to attend practice 3 times a week! ‑ Mondays and Wednesdays between 5 and 6pm, and on Fridays with the male voices between 7.30 and 9pm!


Dr. Cole initiated an honorarium for each boy of two shillings and sixpence (12.5p) a quarter, and five shillings(25p) for the two top boys; the same amounts were put into a savings account on behalf of each boy. The highlight of the year was the annual outing to an opera in London.


Dr. Cole maintained an enduring friendship with Ralph Vaughan Williams, who was one of the original school governors, and together they founded the Dorking and Leith Hill Musical Festival. Up to the date of his death Dr. Cole was still serving on the committee.


Dr. Cole went on to achieve an outstanding musical career and directed the People's Palace Choral Society between 1947 and 1963, and was appointed Master of the Music at the Queen's Chapel of the Savoy between 1947 and 1994. He served for 37 years on the Council of the Royal College of Organists, and was its President from 1970‑72.


He taught at the Royal Academy of Music where he held the Chair of Harmony and Composition from 1945‑62.When he was elected a Fellow of the Royal College of Music he was the only member of the Royal Academy of Music to hold that distinction.


He was also Secretary of the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music from 1962 to 1974.


Many pre‑war pupils of our school will have cause to be grateful to Dr. Cole for nurturing their interest in the world of music which will have sustained them in the succeeding years.




Win Rigby Remembered

(a further appreciation to complement the one from Peter Mills in Newsletter No. 10)


In retrospect she was a schoolmistress of the old school. My first encounter with her strong disciplinarian principles occurred when I arrived at school one summer morning minus my yellow Ashcombe tie. Possibly reported by an eagle‑eyed prefect I stood in trepidation outside her door awaiting admonishment. As a first year pupil I was shaking with fear and needless to say, I never forgot my house tie again. Many of you will relate to similar feelings! As a prefect and subsequently deputy head girl I recall that school behaviour and prefect duties were under her jurisdiction i.e. cloakroom,corridor, hall and dining room rotas ‑ certainly no running was allowed. Staircases were supervised to ensure pupils walked up the correct side.


Win expected high standards from all girls. In the post-war years (of austerity) she was always elegantly dressed. Her artistic talents were in evidence whether it was in her dress or the furnishings and decor ofher homes.


During her time at Dorking she took leave of absence to add to her art qualifications. As well as Deputy Head she was responsible for teaching advanced level art in the VIth forms. I am personally very grateful that she instructed me in the art of calligraphy which I was to use extensively in my career as an infant teacher.


Win's hobbies outside school included dressmaking, embroidery, fine art, visits to the ballet, walking, and the countryside in general. My parents, Frank and May Hayter, enjoyed her company on several holidays to the Italian Dolomites and Austria where she found much pleasure walking in the mountains surrounded by alpine flowers. Easter was the time she accompanied us to Sidmouth for an early spring break at one of the hotels on the front. She and Frank on one occasion were tempted by the sunshine to paddle in the sea.


Following her retirement she bought a bungalow at Church Stretton in Shropshire where she had marvellous views ofher beloved 'Long Mynd'. Her last years were frustrating for her as she suffered crippling bone disease.


A woman of high principles and a fine artist', she had many friends amongst the senior staff. There is no doubt that those of us of that era will have appreciated the character building influence of Win Rigby.


Gillian Evans (nee Hayter)



OLD DORKINIAN CRICKET CLUB ‑ Dave Wilcockson, Hon. Secretary


With two‑thirds of the season gone thecricket team are having an average year with 8 wins, 8 defeats and 7 draws,plus 5 more games lost to the weather. The outstanding feature so far has beenthe batting of Tim Hodgson who has hit 3 centuries against Godalming, WokingRemnants and Wimbledon Unt. and has scored over 800 runs in total.


Theannual tour took place in July in Shropshire where the weather was hot andsunny all week. The team was based in Shrewsbury and played at Frankton, Wem and Iscoyd. Although allthree games were lost, two were close and in the match at Wema dropped catch proved very expensive.


Also in July on another hot day the annualsix‑a‑side tournament was held at Meadowbank. Starting at 10 a.m. andcontinuing until 8 p.m. the winners were Horsham Trinity who defeated the OldDorkinian side in the final; the other teams competing were Newdigate and OldRutlishians. Alan Fox and Dennis Wyatt of Horsham Trinity again did a umpiringwhich was probably more tiring than playing!


A summary of the results are as follows:


Frensham 152‑9 dec v ODs 153‑6

Churt 162‑9 dec vODs 149(T Hodgson 51)


ODs 120 v Old Cats 124‑4

ODs 161‑8 decv Bookham 7‑24


ReigatePriory 122‑5 dec v ODs 116‑7

ODs 283‑2 dec(T.Hodgson 137*, P.Downs 107) v Godalming 148


ODs 209-6 dec (T.Hodgson 104) v Woking Remnants 165‑7

Stoneleigh Park 90 (D.Wilcockson 6‑30) v ODs 91‑1 (P.Bradford 50*)


ODs 107 v Blindley Heath 108‑6

ODs 175‑6dec (G.Poulter 92) v Giltec 121


ODs 185‑9 dec(B.Woods 69) v Forest Green 137‑8

Whyteleafe138 v ODs 139‑2 (F.Bradford71*)


ODs 209‑5 dec(T.Hcdgson 106*) v Wimbledon Unt. 78 (R.Bennett6-8)

ODs 206‑9 dec (B.Woods 63, A.Leopold 53, P.Bradford 50) vOckley 187‑9


Frankton 257‑7 v ODs 236‑8 (T.Hodgson63*, M.Pruter 56, A.Leopold52)


Wem 208‑7 v ODs 143

ODs 192 (M.Pruter65) v Iscoyd 195‑6


0Ds 172‑6dec (A.Culton 50*) v OldCats 129‑7

ODs 101 v N.Holmwood102-3


ODs 116 v Oakwood Hill 118‑5

ODs 187‑6dec (G.Poulter 52) vChadwick 136


ODs 185‑4dec (A.Leopold 5l *, D.Miller 50*) v Reigate Priory 94

ODs 163‑4dec (T.Hodgson 77*) v Woodmansterne133‑5




OLD DORKINIAN FOOTBALL CLUB ‑ Peter Mills,Hon. Secretary


The ODs are looking forward to the start of their 68th season,and will again be fielding five sides in the Old Boys' League, and a sixth, aVeterans' XI, in the Jack Perry Veterans' Cup Competition.


After their superb efforts last season the top three sideshave all gained promotion: the Senior XI, as champions of Senior 3, up toSenior 2, the highest level they have reached since the league was reorganisedsome 15 years ago; theReserves move up to Intermediate (South), last occupied by the Senior XI only 3seasons ago, and the Third XI to Division 3 (South) after scoring a club record97 goals in a season (106 if cup matches are included!)


At the Club's Annual Meeting in June Alec Hodgson was re‑elected Club Captain, and Richard Sharpe ClubChairman. The David Houldridge Cup for the Club's top goalscorer was awarded toSimon Wickham with 32 (followed by Rob Phillips with 26, also from the 3rd XI, Josh Miller22 (4th XI) and PaulAbbott 20 from the Senior XI). Kevin Giles and Ian Venn were both unanimously electedto join the list of Vice-Presidents for their loyal and outstanding service tothe Club over many years.


The Club has been honoured by being invited to host the matchbetween the Old Boys' League representative side against the London Financial Leagueat Pixham, on Wednesday 21st January next year, and to stage one ofthe London Old Boys Cup Finals later in the year.


The Club welcomes supporters to their main Saturday fixturesat Pixham, listed below, to enjoy the play and the after‑matchhospitality.


20 September 1st v Shene O. G       22November 1st v Danes

04 October 1st v Meadonians           29November 2nd v Tenisonians

11 October 1st v Sinjuns                   06December 1st v Minchendenians

18 October 1st v Tenisonians             13December 2nd v Challoners

25 October 4th v Thorntonians            20December 5th v Meadonians

01 November 3rd v Kingsburians*       03January 1st v Mill Hill COB

15 November 1st v Malvernians*        10January 3rd v Glyn OB


* L.O.B. Cup


Those who five in the South and wish to follow the Senior XI's fortunes are reminded that they can see their resultsby tuning in to Ceefax TV on Saturday evenings after7.30pm, or on Sunday following.