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Thursday, 12 March 2015

Web Page  No 2140

15th March 2015

The two pictures that appeared in the Portsmouth Evening News I6th September 1960.

The top picture with Bert Ray.

L to R: Bert Ray the rest unknown

L to R:Keith Conlon,Unknown, ?, Norma Plumb, Lorraine Durrow, Melvyn Griffiths, Nelson Trowbridge

The Bottom Picture with Nelson Trowbridge.

Court Lane/ Manor Court Schools

After some enquiries at the Portsmouth History Centre about the history of the school, they told me that they had very little but have sent me the following about Court Lane and the construction of Manor Court.
Court Lane opened as a council school in 1937. Because of limited space in the late 1950’s, premises at Cosham Park House and Cosham Baptist Church Hall were used. It was decided to build new premises on the 12 acre site sited  off  Grove Road, an area which had been used by the Civil Defence during the war.
It was going to be called Court Manor, but later it was decided to reverse the name. There is confusion over the date of the opening of Manor Court School  is because the first new wing of the building was opened and in use in September 1960 and only half the 600 pupils were using it, half still at Court Lane.
The second phase of the building was completed later, but there is no records of an official opening. There is very little in council minutes other than costings for the building materials, etc.

However an article appeared in the Evening News on 16th September 1960 and describes the new block ,but states as this is the first part of the new school, there will be no official opening.

The only records that in the Portsmouth History Centre are school log books for Court Lane School, which are mainly teachers notes and are closed for 95
years. Records of Manor Court School have not been deposited there either
the Centre staff speculate that they are either still with the school or they may have been disposed of them.

As you know I can get no response from the school so below I reproduce the article from the Evening News of 16th September 1960

A bridge over the railway linking Grove Road to the eastern end of the Highbury Estate would save time and money for pupils attending Cosham Court Lane Secondary School’s new building which ajoins Central Road and Grove Roads says the Headmaster Mr R R Davies.

The new block of what will eventually become the ‘home’ of the entire school came into use this week.

Although staff, parents and pupils are delighted with its facilities the railway barrier and the cost of bus fares are already causing concern.

“ I have no intension of setting off with a grumble” Mr Davies told the Evening News, “ We are termendously lucky to have this lovely well equiped building but many of the children have a great deal of travelling between home and school. It is unfortunate that the railway forms this barrier between Highbury homes and the new school. Children living at the eastern end of Highbury have to got to Cosham and almost retrace their steps.”

“A few parents have approaced me about these difficulties” said Mr Davies, “Whether another bridge can be built in the future I do not know. Certainly the qusetion of bus fares is no inconsiderable matter for some”.

Mr Davies said that it was Ministry policy for fare to be paid for children living three miles from the school. But the parents of a 14 year old living two and three quarter miles away had to pay full adult fare for her.

“ I am strongly of the opinion that children should travel at half fare however long they remain at school, especially that parents are now rightly allowing their children to stay at school longer”, he said.

No date has yet been fixed for the completion of phase two and the present school of 600 children are divided almost equally between the old and new buildings.

“As some of the practical rooms, such as domestic science and handycrafts are at Hiliary Avenue it is necessary to treat the accommodation as a whole which means a considerable amount of travelling between the building” said Mr Davies.

The new building has a spacious library with tables for private study and six airey classrooms with huge windows. The hall, fitted with ropes and wall bars, will also be used as a gynasium until phase two is completed. It can seat 500, has a dais, which is also used as a dinig annex seating 150. This has removable safety barriers and will be used also for musical events, drama and social occassions.

Soon octagonal dining tables will be installed so that the 215 midday meals can be served in a ‘family atmosphere’. Hatches connect the dais with the beautifully equipped kitchen. These hatches and their blue and black tiled surround will be curtained off when not in use to give proper dignity to the dais on other occassions.

This term, for the first time, the school has a sixth form, with thirteen boys and girls. Part of the large staff room is being partitioned for their use, and those pupils also have another small room.

A grrenhouse and a fish pond are to be installed in connection with biology study and there is a fine biology laboratory with a micro-projector and screen.

Salt and fresh water tanks will be provided and a tidal tank is planned in which sea anemones will be grown. Preliminary experiments withthis were done last term and most of the difficulties surmounted. The two science laboratories have a wealth of equipment and the benches are fitted with low voltage circuits.

In the music room the children will use special chairs with swivels on which to rest their note books. Special lighting and ten sewing machines are features of the new needlework room.

When the grounds have been laid out there will be a play area, five tennis courts, netball, football and hockey pitches, provision for athletics and a cricket square.

Already there are changing rooms and thermatically controlled showers for use after gym and games.

There will be no official opening as the block is only part of the new school but there will be an ‘At Home’ shortly for official guests and some parents evenings.  

    You Write:

Maureen Writes:

Yet again you have brought my childhood flooding back to me.

I remember Dr Cheyne well - in fact my family owed him a great debt. I was born in St Mary's in 1947, my mother staying with my grandparents who were living in Central Road Drayton, whilst my Chief Petty Officer dad was based at Rothesay, in Scotland. Two months later mum and I went up to Scotland to join Dad and a few weeks afterwards my mother began to get pains in her leg. The local doctor was treating her for muscle pain, but after 5 weeks it was still no better and the doctor did not seem to take her agonising pain seriously, just telling her to rest and take aspirin. Finding it very difficult to manage a small baby in a rented flat with Dad away on duty Mum decided to return home to my grandparents house. She went to see Dr Cheyne who realised that she was very ill with what he diagnosed as Osteomyelitis - an infection in the bone. He immediately put her in his car and drove her to see a consultant in Portsmouth who confirmed the diagnosis, took her straight to hospital and called in a specialist surgeon from London. This man performed only the second operation of it's kind where her bone was opened and cleared of all the infection and he later took bone grafts from her hip to build the tibia up again to full strength. If Dr Cheyne had not acted as he did, or if Mum had remained in Scotland, she would most probably have had her leg amputated.

Mr Stuart, the chemist, also has a place in my family history, when he removed a pearl from my ear by syringing it. My grandmother's string of pearls had broken and although she thought she had found them all, I had obviously found one and stuffed it in my ear. That syringing is one of my earliest memories.

When did the visit of Queen Mary take place do you know? Grandma worked in Smith and Vospers for a while in the 1950's but I don't remember her ever mentioning that story, but it may have been well before then.

Keep writing the diary, I always enjoy reading it.

News and Views:

On this day 15th March 1960-1965

On 15/03/1960 the number one single was Why - Anthony Newley and the number one album was The Explosive Freddy Cannon - Freddy Cannon. The top rated TV show was The Larkins (ATV) and the box office smash was Psycho. A pound of today's money was worth £13.68 and Burnley were on the way to becoming the Season's Division 1 champions. The big news story of the day was Plans for Thames Barrier.

On 15/03/1961 the number one single was Walk Right Back / Ebony Eyes - Everly Brothers and the top rated TV show was Bootsie & Snudge (Granada) and the box office smash was One Hundred and One Dalmations. A pound of today's money was worth £not very interesting and 13.25 were on the way to becoming the Season's Division 1 champions.The big news story of the day was The Dickie Henderson Show (AR).

On 14/03/1962 the number one single was Rock-a-Hula Baby/Can't Help Falling In Love - Elvis Presley and the number one album was Blue Hawaii - Elvis Presley. The top rated TV show was Coronation Street (Granada) and the box office smash was Lawrence of Arabia. A pound of today's money was worth £12.89 and Ipswich Town were on the way to becoming the Season's Division 1 champions.

On 15/03/1963 the number one single was Summer Holiday - Cliff Richard & the Shadows and the number one album was Summer Holiday - Cliff Richard & the Shadows. The top rated TV show was Coronation Street (Granada) and the box office smash was The Great Escape. A pound of today's money was worth £12.64 and Everton were on the way to becoming the Season's Division 1 champions.

On 15/03/1964 the number one single was Anyone Who Had a Heart -Cilla Black and the number one album was With the Beatles - The Beatles. The top rated TV show was Coronation Street (Granada) and the box office smash was Dr Strangelove. A pound of today's money was worth £12.24 and Liverpool were on the way to becoming the Season's Division 1 champions.

On 15/03/1965 the number one single was It's Not Unusual - Tom Jones and the number one album was Rolling Stones Number 2 - The Rolling Stones. The top rated TV show was Coronation Street (Granada) and the box office smash was The Sound of Music. A pound of today's money was worth £11.69 and Manchester United were on the way to becoming the Season's Division 1 champions.

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