Schools Display - 2011 summer exhibition.

A major feature of the Mersea Museum 2011 summer exhibition was the schools display. Visitors were invited to identify themselves in the school photographs on display, or to add their own memories of their school days:

Pixie Weaver (Farthing)
One of my memories was our cookery class which was in a building of corrugated tin. It was also used for woodwork classes.
Mrs Kirkwood was the cookery teacher and travelled from great Bentley.
Our cookery class went on all day and we were taught all household skills, from laundry, ironing, polishing shoes etc.

Georgina Gamblin
I was evacuated here in 1939 before the war started, with my brother. We stayed with Young Mr & Mrs Farthing. At the end of the garden was Old Mr & Mrs Farthing who were the local Dairy - having their own cows.

Pam Browning (that was
Started school, war started, evacuees came so we only went mornings or afternoons. Left Mersea as my Dad had to work in shipyard at Brightlingsea.

Brian Jay
During World War 2. Walking (not running) from the School with Gas Masks along Barfield Road to the shelters behind the British Legion during an air raid warning.
Singing Ten Green Bottles hanging on a Wall, in the gloomy interior waiting for the All Clear siren.

John Pittock
School Days
When I attended West Mersea School it was in the days when pupils spent their whole school life on the Island. We grew vegetables in the school gardens under the eagle eye of Mr Joe Wilkinson who was also our maths teacher. These gardens were in the area of the present day Oyster Close. The flower gardens round the school were also tended by the pupils and looked immaculate, giving us a sense of pride in our surroundings.
Most of us stayed and had school dinners in the British Legion Hall, bearing in mind that in those days pupils were bussed in from East Mersea, Langenhoe and Peldon. We walked down from the school in crocodile file and occasionally the sirens would go and we would all dive into the air raid shelters behind the British Legion and have a sing song by candlelight. For dinner we all sat at a table with monitors that collected the food for their table two at a time.
John Whiting's Mum was head cook and Mrs Mussett also worked there. I vividly remember a monitor asking for a plate without cabbage on it. Mrs Whiting asked who it was for --- when she realised it was for John she waved her ladle at him and told him to eat his cabbage!!!!
We also got new water drinking fountains in the playground on the back of the Headmasters office and staffroom wall. John Whiting and myself played too long at break time and were drinking at the fountain after the whistle had gone - Whack - Mr Cotgrove had come up behind us with his cane - with a cry of "two birds with one stone", and we scurried back to our classes.
This was not our first or last encounter with Mr Cotgrove and his cane. Another day I clearly remember John and me waiting outside his study regarding some incident or other -but he was nowhere to be seen - so we were told to wait, but being opportunists we saw the cane on his desk and quickly hid it under the rug. When eventually Mr Cotgrove returned he called us in and we stood on the rug waiting for whatever may befall. He reached for the cane and on realising it was not there he shrugged - we thought for a moment we were reprieved - but!!! - he then opened a cupboard door and inside it - you've guessed! a load more canes!!!! - whoops or should I say Whack!!!!!!

Sarah Shehadeh - Mrs Dove's School
Before she moved to Green Tiles in Victory Road, Mrs Dove ran her school at a bungalow in Queen Ann Road, at the "Broomy Hills" end.
The school had moved to Victory Road in 1951, as when we first came to live in Mersea it was where I went to school. Other pupils were John & Richard Jones (the Doctor's sons), Nadene, Martin (and various brothers and sisters). They used to live in New Captains Rd and walk to school in Queen Ann Road. When the school moved to Victory Road their family moved to Rainbow Road! That's life!. Antoinette Allen (later Whybird) and me, Sarah Mansfield (later Shehadeh). I remember Nigel Bank and Barbara Demanby (who lived next door to Green Tiles). I left in 1953 to go to St. Runwalds, in Oxford Rd in Colchester. We all walked to school.
Oh, also Julia White (now Russell Grant, Layer Breton Heath).
See SCH_GRN for more about Green Tiles School.

Caroline Wilson 1982
Their used to be a school swimming pool. It was always very cold when you got in as it was outdoors. We had Sports Days too, going round chanting in the playground. I was in Nelson, the Green Team.
I had a lovely time at Primary School, then named 'West Mersea County Primary'.

Jenny Cousins (née Chatters)
In the 1950s Mr Westcott organised school holidays in Perranporth. We had a wonderful time in Cornwall with our school friends. The school was still all age at that time so a mixture of top juniors and seniors went on the holiday.

Marion Mitchell
I did not go to school here but spent the summer of 1960 living/camping in the school with children from a children's home in Billericay. I was an 18 year old student and helped with the younger children. We were taught to sail by "Uncle Peter" and went to the cinema on Friday night when benches and a screen were put up in a nearby hut.

1 May 2011

Related Images

 West Mersea School, Summer 1968.
 Back row L-R 1. Chris Pod, 2. Paul Burridge, 3. Hubert Seifert, 4. Rick Page, 5. Steven Woods, 6. Richard Argent ?, 7. Hugh Pettifer, 8. John Mills, 
 3rd row from front: 9. Caroline Cock, 10., 11. Neil D'Wit, 12. Neil Mears, 13. Steven Vince, 14. Richard Thorpe, 15. Nicholas Spurgeon, 16. Paul Barnett, 17. Ralph Spence, 18. Johnny Shelton, 19., 20. Nina Matthews,
 2nd row: 21. Jill Richter, 22. Angela Whiting, 23. Linda Betts, 24. Paula Ganderton, 25. Debby ?, 26. Alison Butcher, 27. Rosemary French, 28. Sylvia Potter, 29. Brigitte Knott,
 Front row: 30. Jane Flack, 31. Suzanne Whiting, 32. Julie Cook, 33. Marion Baker, 34. Christine Cooke, 35.Braithwaite ?.  DS01_007DS01_007
West Mersea School, Summer 1968.
Back row L-R 1. Chris Pod, 2. Paul Burridge, 3. Hubert Seifert, 4. Rick Page, 5. Steven Woods, 6. Richard Argent ?, 7. Hugh Pettifer, 8. John Mills,
3rd row from front: 9. Caroline Cock, 10., 11. Neil D'Wit, 12. Neil Mears, 13. Steven Vince, 14. Richard Thorpe, 15. Nicholas Spurgeon, 16. Paul Barnett, 17. Ralph Spence, 18. Johnny Shelton, 19., 20. Nina Matthews,
2nd row: 21. Jill Richter, 22. Angela Whiting, 23. Linda Betts, 24. Paula Ganderton, 25. Debby ?, 26. Alison Butcher, 27. Rosemary French, 28. Sylvia Potter, 29. Brigitte Knott,
Front row: 30. Jane Flack, 31. Suzanne Whiting, 32. Julie Cook, 33. Marion Baker, 34. Christine Cooke, 35.Braithwaite ?.
cJuly 1968
 Visitors enjoying the Mersea Schools exhibition.  PAT_SCH_001PAT_SCH_001
Visitors enjoying the Mersea Schools exhibition.
30 April 2011
ID: DIS2011_SCH
Source: Mersea Museum