I played football at school today and scored four goals. There was nothing else worth recording here. I came home on the Special Bus.
After tea Mam and Dad went to see Ginger run in her third race at Hall Green. She was 2nd and her time was about 30.48 seconds. Meanwhile I played Draughts with Bob.
In school during J.T.C. this morning we were being inspected by the Head and standing at attention with the sun beating down on our backs. Consequently it was not surprising that several boys fainted — several fell flat on their faces. I was determined not to faint but after standing for at least 30 mins, just as we were about to move off, I did. I was dragged off, stayed outside the milk bar for a bit and then I was taken to the Medical Room.
I came home at 1 o’clock with Riley, and then did my prep. this afternoon.
We finished school at Midday today — half term/Whitsun Holiday. Nothing much happened. I came home via Selly Oak on the No. 11 [Outer Circle] ’bus.
I stayed in during the afternoon and did all the prep. which I’ve got to do over the Holiday.
I have got another few cuttings about Ginger. She is running in the 9.17 race at Hall Green tomorrow.
Tonight I tried making an etching.
The etching I made last night wasn’t too bad. The acid hadn’t eaten all of the lines because the wax coating was too thick in parts. Nevertheless I made [it] into quite a decent picture (?!?!) by rubbing black boot polish into the lines.
This morning I went up town with Julia and got Trains Illustrated which has gone down from 1/3d to 1/-. The paper is quite excellent too — the best issue I’ve seen.
After dinner I listened to the Derby won by Nimbus. It was considered to be the most exciting Derby ever.
Brownhound was last but her time was 30.87 (approx).
After breakfast this morning I cut all the front lawn and part of the back as well. After dinner I stayed in for some time then I went out to play with the bat we made last year.
During the afternoon I was reading an article about bird population. It stated that there were about 3,000,000 rooks. Magpies were becoming more and more numerous, (P.103) as were Jays. Jays seem very rare in the Acocks Green and Solihull area — I have yet to see one! In 1939 there were 12,000 pairs of Barn Owls and there were whole districts in the Midlands where they were seldom seen. I remember the Tawny Owl which lived round here. I think he must be dead. We never see him now; we do sometimes hear an owl — a Little Owl I imagine.
The weather looked reasonably good — contrary to the weather forecast of rain and cloudy periods this morning. We did not have breakfast until about 11.0am. After that I mowed some more of the back lawn and then at 12.45pm I went to the County Ground where Warwickshire were playing Derbyshire. The sun shone almost continually.
Warwickshire: 172, Derbyshire: 86 and 292. Warwicks. were 16 for 2 when I left.
Ginger was reserve in the 9.17 race tonight.
[On this page I have stuck a cutting from the Sunday Mercury, “Maestro of Music—At 16” with a tiny picture of “Freddie”, my friend T.F.H. Oxley from school; he is in the Lower Classical Division. Also at the back of the Diary, page 376, is another article and photo from the Birmingham News, entitled “Freddie And His Friends”. The friends referred to are John Ludlow (Classical Sixth), John Yard (Science Sixth), and Una Witherford from the Girls’ School.]
This morning I finished cutting the lawn. I didn’t do anything else all day. I stayed in quite a bit this afternoon though I did go down the village.
After tea Bob came back home. He has spent Whitsun in London. After I had played out for 40 minutes I came in and finished my Hist. essay on “Anaesthetics & Antiseptics” which took me half an hour.
This evening Mam and Dad have gone to the cinema [the Warwick, to see Miranda (A) with Glynis Johns, Griffith Jones and Googie Withers, and Society Smugglers (U)]. and Bob has also gone out. I have packed my satchel for tomorrow. It’s 7.45pm now.
[Instead of my normal uniform] I had to go to school in J.T.C. uniform this morning as we had got a special parade from 1.20 to 2.20. [Mam got me the navy blue cap, blazer and tie, and grey trousers when I started, but some boys have not got a blazer because of clothes rationing.
In Prayers the Head announced that from next term all boys will be required to wear full school uniform, but it will be optional for sixth-formers. He also informed us that next term there are to be 8 Houses instead of 4.]
First period we went to form rooms to buy dinner tickets. I played football for a few minutes and scored a goal.
In J.T.C. we had an inspection ceremony and march past for tomorrow. I came home on the S.B.
Mam and Clarice and Julia had been to Dudley Zoo.
I blancoed my gaiters and belt as usual. It is ten past eight now. I am going to bed very soon.
As soon as the S.B. arrived at school this morning we went to draw rifles from the armoury and then went down to the parade ground. At nearly 10.0am we were inspected by Lieut.-General Sir Frank E.W. Simpson (G.O.C. Western Command). After the inspection there was a march past; the saluting base was half way down the drive. After that we went onto the Golf Course [Edgbaston Park] and gave a display of training. INSERT CUTTING FROM BIRMINGHAM MAIL
When we got back to school we assembled in Big School and the Lieut.General then said how well the contingent had acquitted itself. [He asked the Head to give us a half-holiday.]
This afternoon I did some homework and then I went down the village. There was a photo of the inspection in the Mail.
Not much happened at school today. I score a goal playing football at Break. Then we had Gym of course. It’s jolly good to be able to have a shower bath after. There were no showers at [King Edward’s Grammar School] Camp Hill. I wonder how many schools are as well equipped as ours?
I played football in the dinner hour. I scored two. I collected 4/- Cot Fund during History period.
As soon as I got home tonight I did all my homework, so I have had most of this evening spare. I’ve been writing up my Nature Study Log Book. Mam, Dad and Bob have gone to the Warwick cinema. The wireless [acid accumulator] battery went a quarter of an hour ago at 8.10pm.
In French today I got 17 out of 19 for a test. Next best was 15.
At break I went to see see Mr. [Major] Leeds to find who removed my J.T.C. bag from by the South Door on Thursday. I haven’t got it yet.
We had a bit of a Maths test.
I came home with John [Maund] via town.
This afternoon I listened to the first test match at Headingley and painted two pictures as well.
This evening Mam, Dad and Grandad have gone out and so has Bob. Earlier on I went to the Library to get a book for Mam and Wild Birds in Britain for myself.
At Hall Green Ginger has not run since June 4th when she was last. She has hurt a paw. She did however have a trial but her paw couldn’t have been quite better as she was only 3rd in 30.65.
We spent most of today in the garden. After breakfast I cycled to Grandad’s, then when I got back I cut the lawn. Dad fixed the rose tree by the shed so that it will now grow across the back of the shed instead of spreading across the garden and lawn. It was almost impossible to cut that section of the lawn and until I dug the soil today, I don’t think it had been touched for years. It doesn’t look at all bad now though, apart from the grass which should soon pick up anyway.
I spent quite a time in the garden this evening as well.
Joyce and a friend came at 8.30pm. [Joyce was 15 on April 24th, so is 15 months older than me. She feels like a cousin but is Mam’s youngest sister. Grace is 16, David just 19, Reg 22, Arthur nearly 29, Harold 30, and Leslie 32. Mam (Rose) is the eldest. She is 36. She had a little brother (Arthur) who would have been about 34 now but died in infancy, and a sister Dorothy May who lived for only a few hours who would now be 20–21.]
Nothing much happened at school today. I played football during the dinner hour although it was raining some of the time.
In Scripture I had to read part of [Wordsworth’s] Ode on Immortality, which I have been learning in case I was chosen as one of two representatives in the form to take part for the block recitation prize. I don’t think that I shall be chosen though. We also read part of Macbeth.
I came home on the S.B., then did prep this evening. The exams start on July 6th.
The main item of interest at school today was the announcement that the four new Houses will be:—
1. Mr. V.J. Biggs’
2. Mr. M.A. Porter’s
3. Mr. F.J. Williams’
4. Mr. J.A. Nicholson’s.
I wonder whether the Head has thought what the House “Colours” will be? [I find that Biggs’ will be Light Blue, Williams’ Pink, Porter’s Brown and Nicholson’s Purple. Mr. Biggs has taken half of Mr. Leeds’ House which is Red, Mr. Porter half of Mr. Copland’s: Blue, Mr. Williams half of Mr. Burgess’s: Yellow, and Mr. Nicholson half of Mr. Dunt’s: Green.]
We had a Latin test 3rd period.
I came straight home via town and bought a copy of the Warwickshire Cricket Handbook 1/-.
I did most mostly prep. this afternoon.
This evening I finished off my homework and wrote up some Physics notes.
As usual nothing happened at school — nothing ever does as far as I can see. At 1.0pm I had to see Mr. Porter in his room concerning the Cot-Fund. Out of the £120 that will have been collected by the end of July, I suggested that £30 be sent to the Cancer Research and £30 to the Blind. This suggestion is to be adopted, I believe. The rest of the money will be divided between the Blind Library, Lifeboats, and Youth Hostels.
As I expected I wasn’t chosen to take part for the Recitation Prize.
After school I played for the Form XI v U.M.C. We lost. The match looked a certain draw, ten minutes to go, still 4 wickets to fall with 40 runs to get. Then 3 wickets fell in 4 balls. I was in, and out — bowled first ball by Bayley.
In J.T.C. today we gave a display to those who are not in the Corps. I was one of five demonstrating Rifle No. 5 and 6. Altogether I showed almost a dozen boys how to load, unload, set the sights and fire, etc.
I came straight home and did homework this afternoon. At 5 o’clock I cut the front lawn and also dug some of the garden.
Prayers this morning were held in the quadrangle between Big School and the Gymnasium owing to School Cert. and H.S.C. taking place in Big School.
In Gym we went down to the playground and played Skittleball and Netball. In English I collected 2s 1½d Cot-Fund. At dinner time I played football from 1 o’clock.
I came home on the Special Bus as usual. When I got home I played out then did some prep. this evening. Mam and Dad are at the cinema, seeing Jean Simmons and Donald Houston in The Blue Lagoon (A) at the Olton.
Prayers were held in the Quadrangle again this morning. The playing fields to the South of the school are now officially “open” — we can play on them now. We had a Mathematics test.
After school Jennens and I went to the County Ground where Warwickshire were playing Oxford University. I came away from the ground at 6.30pm. Oxford University scored 195 and Warwicks. were 155 for 3. Warwicks. team:— F. Gardner, L. Croom, Don Taylor, J.S. Ord, H.E. Dollery, A. Townsend, P. Cranmer, C.W. Grove, E.B. Lewis, T.L. Pritchard, W.E. Hollies. A.H. Kardar was playing for Oxford. It was real cricket weather.
Tonight I did a lot of prep.
I did some prep. in bed this morning then when I got up I put a new handle on the cricket bat. I broke the first handle on Friday hitting a four.
After breakfast I played out for some time then came in and did prep. I spent the afternoon doing prep. so I didn’t go to the Mission. After tea this evening Granma came and I played Cricket in the Street [Circular Road] with the boys until ten past eight. It is 8.40 now.
There was no Choir Practice today. In fact we haven’t had one since May 30th [because of the exams].
We started some new arithmetic today — “Stocks and Shares”. Mr. Buttle took the Latin period.
I came home on the S.B. as usual.
This evening I did some homework and also listened to “Clay’s College” with Clay Keyes and Richard Goolden. At present I think the best variety shows are:—
This list does not include “Have A Go” and “Up the Pole” which have ended for the time being.
The Latin period was again taken by Mr. Buttle. I came home through town.
This afternoon I did a bit of homework.
At six o’clock I went to the Town Hall for the Elgar-Bantock Celebration Concert. I met Fred Oxley at 6.30 outside. The concert was given by the Midland Institute and Birmingham University. It lasted from 7 till 9.0pm and I didn’t get home until 9.30.
Ginger is running at Hall Green tomorrow.
Nothing happened at school today. The School Captain [J.D. Mountford] took the Latin period. In the dinner hour I wrote two and a half pages of a History essay in the library. Second period pm. (Art) we did not use the Art-room. Instead Mr. Cotter took us in Room 146 [in the upper corridor, two along from our U.M.D. form room].
I came home on the Special Bus then I went down the village on Bob’s bicycle.
This morning for Art period we had Mr. Whalley in the Geography room. We did not do anything in particular; we mainly messed about. In J.T.C. we had some drill revision & Bren Gun instruction.
After school I came home with Kipper.
After dinner John [Maund] and I both went to Kipper’s and we played with the Hornby Dublos, both layouts equipped with points now. I came home at 6 o’clock. I did prep. during the evening.
Ginger was 4th last night in 31.05 secs. from trap 4. Ginger was certainly no more than 40lb when she went to Hall Green on May 2nd. Now she weighs nearly 51lb.
Art period was in Room 172 today. In P.T. we played Skittleball on the new playing fields. We had a super game & I scored one super try by running the whole length of the pitch — the opposing side just couldn’t catch me.
I collected 2s 7½d Cot-Fund in English period. I played football for a bit during the dinner hour.
Ridout [who is a prefect in the Modern Languages VI] took Maths period this afternoon. I came home on the Special Bus after school. I have been doing some homework this evening.
Last night there were two earth tremors in the Midlands, one at 8.0pm and one at 10.22 which shook houses, threw over furniture & smashed crockery, hurled people about & made walls shake. At Dudley frightened people ran into the street.
School ended at Break this morning as the School XI were playing The Old Edwardians at Eastern Road. Everyone had to carry a chair down to the ground.
Old Eds., batting first, eventually declared at 217 for 9.
[School then scored 150 for 7 by the close of play, so the match was drawn.
Alabaster, c Hiscox, b Lobb 1
Figures, c and b Benson 49
Higgins, b Revill 12
Tipper, b Gough 24
Kendrick, b Gough 1
Sumner, c McClelland, b Gough 35
Pardoe, lbw, b Lobb 12
Freeman, not out 60
Baker, S, c Coleman, b Benson 2
Baker, E, did not bat
Extras (byes 4, leg-byes 5) 9
Total (9 wickets, dec.) 217
Gough, 3 for 33; Benson, 3 for 51.
Hiscox, b Figures 1
Revill, lbw, b Pringle-Brown 4
A.J. Homer, not out 78
Gough, c Pardoe, b Sumner 8
McClelland, I.R., b Sumner 0
P. Hutchings, run out 2
Vernon, lbw, b Sumner 1
Homer (B.C.), B Sumner 0
Benson, not out 2
Coleman and B. Lobb did not bat
Extras (byes, 13; leg-byes, 1; no balls, 3) 17
Total (7 wickets) 150
Sumner, 4 for 21.]
I came home at 12.25pm. This afternoon I listened to the Second Test Match v New Zealand on the wireless, then at 5 o’clock Grandad & Bob went with us to a party for Jennifer at a church near Aunt Daisy’s.
I didn’t do anything in particular today. After dinner I went out into the garden and played some gramophone records. I also read the July issue of Boy’s Own Paper.
After tea I played in the garden. It has been a hot day again. No rain has fallen for nearly three weeks.
First period today we all went down to Eastern Road and brought a chair back each. In the dinner hour I played cricket on the playing fields. I came home on the Special Bus as usual.
I went down the village on Bob’s bike twice at about five o’clock.
It has been terrifically hot today — the warmest day and night this year.
Tonight I spent some time doing prep. and revision for the examinations.
I nearly missed the Special Bus this morning — not quite though. We had a Latin test third period.
After school Tipper and I both went down to the ground and played in the nets until 1.40.
This afternoon I spent doing prep. until six o’clock and I carried on doing prep. all this evening.
It has been another hot day — last night was the warmest this year; the minimum temperature was 61 degrees. There is now an official drought in nearly all the country over. I hope it will rain soon.
English and History periods today were spent in doing a History test. In Art this afternoon I did some oil-painting. I came home on the Special Bus.
This evening I completed some more weather records. I have just discovered that up to and including May 31st we have had 606.02 hours of sunshine at an average of 4.13 hrs per day, and 11.172 ins. of rain at an average of 0.074 ins. per day.
This evening Ginger ran at Hall Green and was third in 30.77 seconds from trap 1. Meanwhile I did some work in the garden and listened to the last broadcast of “Waterlogged Spa”.
In J.T.C. today we were given a bit of a display of changing the guard, then we attacked some enemy or other. It was terrifically hot again.
I came home via town.
This afternoon I did a lot more revision for the exams.
After tea I did some work in the garden then listened to “Success Story — Tommy Handley”. It was strange to hear his voice again with the ITMA characters — strange also to hear the old signature tune. I remember on Jan.9th as the ITMA recording closed at 5.30 saying “It’s a super programme, isn’t it?” yet half an hour later it was announced that Tommy Handley had died about two hours before. ITMA was dead.