Bede Hall, Billingham

Strictly speaking I shouldn’t be on this photograph of fifth and sixth formers in May 1971, but I had somehow missed being on the one of the lower school earlier that day (dental appointment I think) and was told to join this group. Front row second from left. This will be just before Ann joined the school but I bet she can recognise many of the teachers…

34 responses to “Bede Hall, Billingham

  1. Brilliant! Nice to see old Doc Smith again and his replacement (Boko we called him but can’t remember his name) Also recognise Mr Walker, Mr Teasdale, Mr Tomlinson, Mr Calvert. Ah the bad old days!!

  2. I was a maths teacher at Bede Hall 69-72 – 8th to the right of Doc Smith – recognize one pupil Ann Bravey 17th from the left, 2nd row – came across site while hoping to find info on Helen Roberts (art teacher) – to my left is Margaret ???? (PE teacher) – photo has brought back some very fond memories – thank you!

    • Anne Whitworth who joined in 1969 as PE teacher (think she also played hockey at a national level)

      • She did play, article in Campus 1971
        Averaging three matches a week, the team played games in the Mid-
        West and Eastern States in cities such as New York, Philadelphia
        and Washington. In two months they played 25 matches against
        squad teams and the American National Team. Mrs. Whitworth
        shot 39 of the 166 goals scored. When she returned to the Campus
        to coaching schoolgirls, Mrs. Whitworth particularly noticed how
        much she has become competitive, imbued with the will to win. When
        at the end of the Christmas term the staff played the school, Mrs.
        Whitworth was asked what she thought about her team-mates:
        “Well, Norman Teasdale definitely has potential but he
        might learn to use the legal side of the stick.”

        After Christmas came more testimonial trial matches which
        Mrs. Whitworth felt, were tougher to play than the inter~
        nationals. As the American matches were not counted as full
        internationals, it was with great delight that Mrs. Whitworth
        learned she was selected to play for England for the first time.
        This was at Nottingham against Wales. Then the most impor-
        tant match was played at Wembley Stadium.

        The Wembley international is the one games mistresses
        all over the country choose for their annual school outing.
        This is a strictly all-female affair. Train loads and coach
        parties of schoolgirls pour into London to provide the most
        exciting and excitable crowd a hockey team can play in front
        of. Most internationals outside Wembley are played before a
        few spectators who clap politely. But at Wembley the partisan-
        ship is high-pitched, vociferous, deafening. The West German
        girls were in no doubt about the crowd’s sympathies. So
        overwhelming is the noise that the umpire’s whistles cannot be
        heard by the teams and so extra officials patrol the touchline
        and sound a hooter to signal a stoppage. This explains why
        decisions at Wembley always appear to be given late.

        The 200-strong Campus party contributed their share of
        decibels to the din. Their day, and Mrs. Whitworth’s day, was
        finally made memorable when the England centre-forward
        from Billingham scored the first goal. In the next match against
        Scotland, Mrs. Whitworth scored the winning goal.
        New Zealand Tour.

        After a rather sedate term of school rounders and tennis
        Mrs. Whitworth sets off on yet another tour. This summe;
        a sort of Hockey Olympics takes place in New Zealand. This
        is the International Federation of Women’s Hockey Associa-
        tions’ Tournament in which 19 countries take part. Mrs.
        Whitworth will be a member of the England team that will
        play there and that will also play in Jamaica, Fiji, Australia,
        Hong Kong and Ceylon on their travels.
        Campus Hockey.

        Naturally, in comparison with international hockey the
        schoolgirl level is not so colourful. The Campus has taken
        to the game slowly. Bad weather and bumpy pitches are
        off-putting. The senior girls, Mrs. Whitworth comments,
        enjoy the game very much but lack aggressive, competitive
        spIrIt. They have had their successes, however, and are making
        progress. This season they have played very well in the Tees-
        Side tournament and were unbeaten. The Captain, Jackie
        Barnett, and Sandra Miles were selected for the Teesside
        Second XI. As nearly all the team are staying on next year
        they should improve. The junior team is talented and very
        successful. Last October they drew the final of the Stockton
        tournament with Teesside H.S. to share the trophy. They are
        third In their league and are unbeaten in friendly matches
        against neighbouring schools. D. Anderson and L. Hawskby
        who. are very promising, have already played for Norton
        LINDA MOORE.

      • Thanks Liz for a comprehensive response! My post is a little briefer – on the subject of hockey, Keith Armstrong (the class of 1970) was a very good player and I seem to recall he obtained representative honours.

  3. Hi Brian, Can you tell me where you got this image – is it your own scan or bought from somewhere? I would like to get hold of the Junior one taken the same day as I was on it!

    • Hi Paul, It’s my scan of a print I found at the Campus. The negatives of the photos taken by Panora, the company that took these photos, are held by Manchester libraries archive service. I did email them about the junior photo in 2011 and they replied that they had a record of it being taken but would have to check if the negative had survived. I heard no more from them and didn’t pursue it any further.

  4. I have seen the same image though spread over a few sheets. Fascinating to see how I looked back then. The girls I went out with, the girls I dreamed about going out with – happy days! (pity I didn’t put in as much work as I should have though…)

  5. Wow, what an amazing picture – I was searching for an image of our school badge when I came across it – quite a surprise to see everybody there.
    So many faces from the past (so long ago it seems), with myself, Alan Hick and Nigel Allison hidden in the back row as usual. What a pity the school no longer exists.
    The reason for the search – I have nothing from my school days – everything was at my parents house, and when my father died a couple of years ago, my stepmother had everything thrown away without consulting us – not very nice!

    • I have some pictures of the school and the old magazines, are you on LinkedIn or Facebook? we could contact via that. Yes I am on the picture over to the right, small person perched on a seat!!

      • I am on Linked In if anyone wishes to connect. Perhaps there is a case for a Bede Hall alumni group?

        ~~~~ Best regards


  6. Came across this by a boringly long route so won’t explain. I was in 5th form at time. My mum was Dr Smith’s secretary in the tartan skirt and brooch below neck on sweater (my mum that is, not Dr Smith – although we had our doubts!). Very weird this photo, a sort of time warp as others have commented. Names of teachers I can recall are Mr Bell (Maths teacher) who never gave up on me as a hopeless case – bizarrely one of my sons is now a maths lecturer. The fingerly-challenged Miriam Gasgoigne – music teacher and pianist. I remember her telling Eddie Jobson he was making a mistake by not following a formal music education for him only to return a couple of years later in (I think) a Roller to continue the discussion! David Calvert who sadly took his own life in an age when homosexuality was often met with intolerance. Another tragic figure Mike Poultney who recited the value of pi to get in Guiness Book of Records. Gwynneth Cole – deputy headmistress and a close friend of my mum’s. Peter Walker (who at one time lived in the Kennedy Garden flats) and John Dyson (who had a flat in Durham City). In the Sixth Form these last two became more like friends than teachers. I recall visiting Peter’s flat on several occasions listening to and talking about music and staying overnight at John’s flat on Claypath Durham – imagine what the gossip-mongers would make of that these days. Then again they were young teachers then and the age gap would have been much less than it seemed at the time. Inspirational men.
    The woodwork teacher (Mr French?) who caned me twice but he just lived around the corner from me and I let his car tyres down a lot more than two times! Back in the day!

  7. Hi, great to see all the old crew, again, some of the old boys like Alan Munkley, Paul Menzies, Toto, Dennis Sugden – I really would have liked to see David Scotson on there – oh and I’m on there too! Steve Dobson (Nosbod)

  8. Thanks so much for sharing this! It’s a great photo, and it’s nice to be able to remember so many names and faces. Looking back, many of those teachers were a huge influence on me – if you’re reading this, many thanks to all of you! (I think that’s me on the back row, about 6th from the right.)

  9. Great photo! Anyone know what happened to the teacher sat 4 to the left of Doc Smith (as you view) – Mr Cowley? – think he taught chemistry/physics. Also think he taught later at Bede College?

      • Stan was also in charge of the photographic club and had a dark room in the main school building. He married (I think) Miss Allen who taught Physics at Bede. One of Stan’s foibles was the chocolate digestives stored in the back room of the chem lab. he was often to be seen disappearing in there only to come out brushing away crumbs a few minutes later. In a weird irony, a bloke who worked for me many years later was called Stan Cowie.

  10. Came across this photo when, in an idle moment I wondered what became of Miss Neasham – one of the few teachers (along with Mr Teasdale and Mr Bell) who sticks fondly in my memory. Sad to say I HATED Bede Hall and couldn’t wait to leave. Ironic that I was to become a teacher (and Headteacher) for years after leaving. I remember Tom Bookless – a year older than me and we were in the same ‘kipling’- under Mrs Carpenter’s supervision. I don’t recall Mr French being a woodwork teacher – that was Mr Teasdale perhaps? Mr French lived on Sandy Lane and was friendly with Mr Wain (batman) and they sometimes played golf together.
    Great to be able to recognise a handful of my old mates – none of whom I am still in contact with but to my shame, I can’t name any of the girls.

    • Just come across this, many familiar faces but sad to say not many names stick! Mr French taught Biology along with Miss Kettlewell that I do remember, both left a lasting memory with me.

  11. Mr French (Alan?) taught biology. There was also a Mr Dent who taught metalwork who might be the Alan I’m thinking of. French was the form master for my sixth form group. Mrs Carpenter was a great person, I felt she really cared about the flock she looked after.

    • Re my earlier comment – I now remember Mr Dent was the “B” who caned me twice – he lived on Wolviston Court Estate as I did.

      • He was a bit too quick to use the cane. You have to question his motives I feel. he was in 14 years the only teacher ever to cane met.

      • I am struggling to remember Mr Dent – though I also lived on Wolviston Court (Marton Drive). I remember the PE staff were generally too free with delivering the slipper . During my first PE lesson at the school I reckon they delivered the slipper at least sixty times – led by Ken Allen who remains to this day one of the most repugnant teachers in my memory. Dave Lamb was his protégé and not much better.

      • Alan Dent lived at the end of Clifton Avenue near Thames Road – at least I hope he did or I was letting someone else’s tyres down! I played on the school rugby team but was also in the (so called) school orchestra and remember Ken Alan and Miriam Gascoigne having a blazing row over whether I should attend orchestra or rugby practice – surprisingly Gascoigne won. I also now recall Dent caned all the boys in our class for firing a water pistol in the metalwork room when nobody would own up. Generally though what memories I still have of Bede & the staff are pretty positive.

    DR. J. W. ASHLEY SMITH, Headmaster
    MR. E. C. COLLEY, Deputy Headmaster
    MISS N. G. REES, Senior Mistress
    MR. K. W. ALLEN, Physical Education
    MR. D. M. ALLISON, Mathematics
    MR. P. BARRASS, Art
    MR. E. A. BASSETT, History
    MR. C. BELL, Geography
    MR. G. W. BODDY, English
    MR. J. N. BROOME, English
    MR. G. D. CALVERT, Mathematics
    MRS. D. CARPENTER, Housecraft
    MR. K. CHARNOCK, Modern Language
    MISS P. COCKCROFT, Mathematics
    MR. A. H. COUSINS, English
    MR. S. COWEY, Chemistry
    MRS. F. COWLEY, Art
    MR. A. DENT, Metalwork
    MR. P. DIXON, Geography
    MR. A. FRENCH, Biology
    MRS. M. 1. GASCOIGNE, Music
    MRS. 1. E. GLASS, General Studies
    MR. J. HALL, Physics
    MR. J. A. L. HATTON, Woodwork
    *MRS. M. HICK, French
    *DR. J. D. HUDSON, Mathematics
    MR. R. KEIR, Modern Languages
    MISS C. KER, Physical Education
    MISS M. J. KETTLEWELL, Biology
    MR. D. LAMB, Physical Education
    MR. P. LITTLE, Physics
    MR. F. K. MERCER, Classics
    MISS R. MOORSOM, Classics
    MRS. M. MUNRO, Classics
    MR. S. NARROWAY, English
    MR. V. K. NGUYEN, French Assistant
    MISS S. O’HARA, Classics
    MR. D. PARRY, Chemistry
    MR. A. PEEL, Chemistry
    MISS M. E. RATTENBURY, English
    *MRS. L. A. SAYERS, Housecraft
    MR. T. W. SLEE, Mathematics
    MR. A. R. SUTTON, Science
    MRS. L. TATE, Modern Languages
    MISS H. VEITCH, Mathematics
    MR. B. E. WAIN, English
    MRS. J. WAIN, Mathematics
    MR. P. J . WALKER, Classics
    MRS. E. F. WESTERMAN, Modern Languages
    MR. K. M. WHITESIDE, Modern Languages
    MRS. A. WOODWARD, Physical Education

    List of teachers from the Campus 1968 magazine

    • I must thank Mr Allison who I think set up the computer club, I have had a long career in IT and have loved doing it. Some of our teachers were inspirational in introducing us to life outside school.

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