So, at five years of age I went to Woodingdean Primary School. The Headmaster was Major Hagard, and I have a photograph of him. Better still, the photo is of him and me! This must have been when I was around 7 years of age and began learning to play the violin. My poor parents had to put up with me practising for three or four years until I left that school to go to the Grammar School. The violin belonged to the school, so I had to give it back and that was the end of my violin playing. In the photo I am seated, with my violin.
I felt I had to include the group photograph because something has always bothered me about it. I seem to be the only one in a school uniform. Why? The boys are wearing school ties, but I’ve got the whole kit on. I’m on the front row, far right. The violin teacher was my form teacher that year, Mr Matthews, back row far left. The girl sitting beside me is Carole Crossley, you’ll see her again shortly in another post.
Of course Major Hagard is smiling for the photos, but he could be so scary walking round the school. It was still the days when boys were given the cane for bad behaviour too, and he really knew how to keep order in his school.