School Badge
M

David MACKAY  (1961 - 1966) david.mackay5@virgin.net

The memories stirred by others were deep but I have a few offerings which may ring true with some of you. I remember well the staff mentioned but others also stick in my mind . The Rev. Morton who, in a very Christian moment, had a number of us caned for failing to attend a resit for a failed RE test – he put me off religion for life . A young maths teacher called Waugh who took a lot of stick and literally threw a pupil out of the classroom door – we settled down after that. Ken Quickfall's replacement was called Frost , I think , and I seem to remember he was fond of using the sandshoe at any opportune moment . I can’t remember the name of the gowned French teacher of whom we were all afraid, it could have been Prout, (Prust according to the Heatonian of 1959 - ed) but we had a new one called Storey, or Stordey ,who used a copy of the very hard-backed text book to keep order.

Most of my memories seem to revolve around punishment unfortunately but there were some good times in the "R" class of ’62 to ’66 . "Dan" has always been remembered with affection and I recall when we left in July 66 that we had a whip round for him and bought a bottle of whisky and a packet of his favourite fags but before presenting it to him we gave him a joke present of a bottle of pop and a box of matches. I can also remember when part of the wall came down on the front field causing great excitement as we could actually see the girls instead of just hearing them through the wooden partition wall in the school hall.

Lunchtimes spent in Paddy Freeman’s with a "cob and crisp" sandwich or chatting up the girls in the Spinney while smoking an illicit cigarette bought from the shop next door.

Holiday trips to Interlaken on the train and in the snow and on the schools ship to Portugal and Morocco with the trio of Gibson , Quickfall and Westwell in charge

I left in 66 and went to Swan Hunters with Jeff McCartney and Mick Richardson as mentioned by Mick in his piece. I bumped into Jeff ,in a Newcastle pub, about 20 years ago and he had joined the probation service having decided that the cloth was not what he wanted but I have never seen him since.

The web site was pointed out to me by Ernie Gilroy who I see regularly in my local and who taught Biology to both of my children . He is still living in Newcastle and seems to know the whereabouts of a few of our ex-classmates.

I live in Blyth {Northumberland} now and am happily married with two great kids at University . I left engineering 15 years ago and now teach Technology and ICT in Monkseaton and can easily resist the use of sandshoes and books as weapons of discipline.

Two other ex-pupils have crossed my path in the last 20 years – Phil Stringer who was a couple of years younger than me and was working in London as a Lloyds inspector and Jeff Emmerson , a year younger ,who was on the same B.Ed. course as me in 1986 and when last heard of was teaching in Morpeth.

I would welcome contact from anybody who feels so inclined

Ian MACKAY (1963 - 1970) ianmackay@unw.co.uk

1G - 5G L6Sc, U6Sc.

The recollections of my time HGS (1963 -1970) are somewhat obscured by time, however I do not remember it in its entirety through "rose tinted spectacles". It has to be said that in my early days there was a very oppressive regime of work, work & more work interspersed with twice yearly exams. I recall many instances of anxiously sitting in class awaiting results to be read out either alphabetically, or in order of merit (curiously always seemed to be a similar wait for my name to be read out!), hoping that I beaten the system and kept out of the lower quartiles.... "Mulhall !!" where are you now ?, the stick you took from persistently underachieving in Ron Cherry's infamous historical date tests was sufficient to alter most sane beings psychological profile!.

Yes, life was hard for a young lad in those days, streaming was still in operation albeit as "GRAM" ,but for those poor souls who missed the cut, they then in many instances inherited a lesser education, and unfortunately as I recall, the "M" stream inherited some rather "infamous" names who you did your level best to avoid at all costs.

There were humorous moments, I remember those 1/3rd pint bottles of milk and an instance of a competition to see who could drink the most volume the fastest, duly won by "Earnshaw" who had developed a technique of being able to pour the milk so fast down his throat that it streamed out of his nose, ugh !! The not so humorous, my only attempt to "tread the boards" in any of the famous HGS productions, ended rather abruptly at a lunch time audition when I was "evicted" , being caught propelling elastic band driven paper missiles at those on stage whilst sitting rather impatiently for my turn to come.

For my part I suppose from an initial appraisal I coped quite well, at least up to the 5th year, I made all the "G's" and also all the top sets in science & maths in 4th & 5th years so perhaps I should not criticise too much, but I was no swot and eventually got found upon entering the 6th form with the resulting greater freedom, where background work was essential to achieve high grades, a point that I totally missed! I just made Brunel University and read chemistry solely because it seemed like a good idea at the time and I discovered that HGS fell seriously short in its career advisory, guidance & support services.

Although I graduated with a degree in applied chemistry, from that day, I dropped science completely, being lured into the world of finance, until that is, several years ago when I was called in to assist in tutoring my 2 children (Kelly & Adam) in GCSE joint science. On reflection I must give credit to the old school as what ever else has changed the basics of science haven't and that the teaching all those years ago from the likes of Walton, Cressey, & co. stood me in good stead, as Kelly & Adam obtained a double A* and a double A between them. Oh! and I must not forget to thank a certain Physics teacher ( Young?) who, was it 1964 ?, punished the whole class, claiming that he had been spat upon, by getting us all to write out "Archimedes Principle" 50 times, and for that I am still able to utter those immortal words "when a body is wholly or partially immersed........" I'll spare you the rest ! 

Also must mention "Geoff Hilling" and his brother "Nigel" with whom I spent far too much time plane spotting both in and out of school, and Nick Lambert who informed me of this site. Moving on, I eventually returned to Whitley Bay, and now live with my wife Joan (and two children in between term times, when they are both at the University of Durham). I am a partner in one of the North East's leading independent firms of Chartered Accountants, where I specialise in IT.

I have little contact with any other ex Heatonians save for the annual exchange of Christmas cards... thank you Paul, I see you have just filed with the site ! To avoid duplication as to class pictures, (see Geoff Allan for 3G May 66 and 5G May 68) I enclose a picture which given that our A levels were just about on us in May 1970, is possibly one of the last times all at Upper VI Science for 1970 were all together . When you look at the hair styles, clearly the effect of the 60's had been felt. How many are still recognisable from the earlier 5G picture?

Denis McALLISTER (1958-1963) dmacbrew@tiscali.co.uk

Apart from dinner-times in the Dene (sometimes literally) I can say that I hated just about every minute at school, unfortunately this led me to miss an experience I`m sure I would have enjoyed - university. The amount of homework we were expected to do was criminal and after the first couple of years I rarely did it. In fact in truth I wasted my entire time at HGS. Despite this and to the amazement of at least one (probably all) of the teachers I somehow ended up with six O-levels.

These stood me in great stead in my later career. Whilst at school I became familiar with the evils of drink and I henceforth made it my business to try andcombat this by emptying the country of beer. I`ve recently retired from this, mission unaccomplished.

With one exception I`ve never come across a single ex-schoolmate since leaving. Mike Carpenter joined me for an ill-fated if enjoyable few months at Parsons apprentice school putting round pegs in square holes - I think he went to the Ministry at Benton.

I`ve spent most of my life on Tyneside (Newcastle/North Shields) with a few years each in London & Wales. I am now in the beautiful Yorkshire Dales & would like to stay here but who knows?

Trevor McCONNELL (1967-1973) trevsf1@aol.com

I can recall vividly my first day at Heaton in 1967. Coming from Benton Park Primary, the first thing that struck me was the vastness of the school. I am sure it took me the first term to find my way round.

By and large I enjoyed my time at Heaton. Teachers I remember include;

  • John Barker – Many a good Rugby lesson. I remember well when his car was left on the pitch at the front of the school.
  • Ken Quickfall – There can be few sports teachers, who at Chillingham Road Baths, enthused about the merits of staying fit whilst puffing on a Woodbine during a swimming lesson.
  • Dr.Henstock – Enough said.
  • Mr. (Biology) Bell. – Every lesson the same, here is one I prepared earlier, here are the notes, copy them verbatim into your books !
  • Edgar Tansley – I am still trying to work out the relevance of Latin !
  • Freda Crabtree – Biology lessons were always good value.
  • ‘Fitter’Armstrong – Metalworking made easy.
  • Angela Todd (now McKenzie) – My form Teacher for 2 or 3 years.

Other pupils who spring to mind include,

  • Mick White – A fine center threequarter.
  • Dickie Stoddart – Another fine threequarter.
  • Paul Trevethick (Thicky)
  • And of course, Paula Chicken – Best legs in the school.

After leaving Heaton I joined a local ship owners where I spent six years, leaving only when the shipping recession hit Tyneside. Coincidently the founder of that company at one point owned eight houses on Jesmond Park West. This was brought about by a rumour that the council wanted a large house to house delinquent female teenagers. Fearing this would bring prices crashing, he promptly bought each house as it came on the market.

I then moved on to Hunting & Son in Newcastle as Operations Manager, again leaving only when the company closed down. Was it really a shipping recession or just me ?

After leaving shipping I embarked upon a design and manufacturing career, which now has me living and working in San Francisco. I sometimes miss Newcastle but the weather over here takes a lot of beating.

I am married with three kids aged between 16 and 21, all over here with us. I remember years ago someone saying it gets easier as kids get older. Believe me it doesn’t, just more expensive.

Hugh McCREDIE (1954-60) hmccredie@coordinates.u-net.com

1B,2B,3B,4B,5B, LVIM,

Whilst awaiting 11+ results we got ‘parked’ in the nearest secondary modern school. This was a fairly bleak experience and those selected for HGS were generally relieved. Relief was tempered by the realisation that my ageing father, a decorated (MC) World War I veteran, could not afford my uniform. On my first day, I was embarrassed to wear a second-hand blazer onto which my mother had sewn the school badge.

Early term marks suffered due to involvement with the Scouts, particularly Gang Show rehearsals during Spring terms. Fortunately, I was not phased by exams, so was able to keep my place in the B stream. Humanities came easily but I did not put in the effort for languages, maths and the sciences. I liked Rochester’s teaching of History ‘by numbers’. The ability to recall events and personalities from 19th Century Britain and Europe still proves useful.

I had no skill at ball games and resorted, along with other incompetents, to a variety of stratagems to escape games and PE. Chief friends were other sporting refugees: Ned Bourne, Dennis (Eggy) Connell and Roy Cull. The highlight of my time at HGS was participating in two plays produced by the great Ron Cherry: the bigot de Stogumber in ‘St Joan’ (1959) and Mark Anthony in ‘Julius Caesar’ (1960).

I was surprised with five GCE O level passes and signed up for A Level History, Eng Lit and Economics; working hard and enjoying it. However, I know that I was the student who Harry Askew reported sleeping during his finance lessons. Lewis Gordon’s sessions were more interesting, as were those of Jimmy ‘Charlie’ Robinson in English and Ron Cherry for European History. Ron dismissed my marathon effort on Charles XII of Sweden as heavy on detail and light on analysis; a watershed experience in developing my analytical skills.

LVIMod was a great experience, with involvement in Julius Caesar and working alongside Keith Humble, Willie Penn, Donald Rutherford, Michael Tartt etc. producing the arts magazine ‘Vision’ from an office at the back of the Art Room. Notwithstanding this, I decided to leave. I was always desperately short of cash, had no chance of getting the requisite O Level Latin for a History degree and was in love with the woman who became my wife.

My first destination was the Newcastle Playhouse but when this closed I joined Durham NCB Staff Department. My interest in personnel management stemmed from a talk to the Economics Society by an Old Heatonian, Peter Abel. Once employed, I did ONC and HNC Business Studies via day-release from the NCB, then Institute of Personnel Management graduate membership from T&N in Washington. I ended up with the top HR role for two FTSE 250 companies doing senior management selection/development and collecting data en route. I analysed the latter for an MSc at Aston Business School. When my last employer demerged its businesses in 1999, I took early retirement, freelanced in management assessment and development, finished an OU Psychology BSc, and researched a PhD at Manchester University. In full retirement, I write personality psychology articles and I am a Methodist Local Preacher at the liberal end of the theological spectrum.

John McKEEGAN (1962-1967) john.mckeegan@hmrc.gsi.gov.uk

I attended between ’62 & 67 and was in the same class as two of your other contributors. I sat in the next aisle to Billy Dunn and seem to recall borrowing A quick One an L.P.by the Who – this was strange as I didn’t have a record player so I went up the street to listen to it in Robert Burn’s flat ( he also went to HGS and was in the “G” forms). I remember running down the corridor between the Gym and changing rooms, pulling the door closed which hit Barrie Russell in the face. Jack Frost was less than impressed and I got a dose of the sandshoe. Ian Davison was also in the “G” forms and used to walk to school with me and Robert.
The Head, Harry Askew, used to live two streets away and walked the same route as us. One night he spotted me smoking and the following day I was summoned to his office for the cane- he told me to bend over the armchair and I foolishly said there was a limit to what I’d do. He replied “what was three will now be six” and he was lethal. As I walked back in the classroom with my eyes watering and my bum numb Geordie Myers asked how many, I said six and this was whispered round the room only for Tufty Taylor (our form master) to bellow “DON’T MAKE A HERO OF THIS BOY OR HE WILL BE GOING BACK FOR MORE” he was all heart!!!
 
Ken (just another cig.) Quickfall lived two streets in the other direction and I often bumped into him “up straight boy and take your hands out of your pockets” another charmer.
 
In the second year our form room was upstairs behind the assembly hall , well out of the way and loads of near riots when the teachers were away.
 
Cunningham for History, ooh Lord – 30 minutes of wrist numbing note writing and nothing explained.
Golightly for Biology a man whose frame did not reflect his name.
Olly Beak for first year French – couldn’t understand a thing.
Edward G. Robinson, a pompous little so and so who thought anyone who could not fathom Shakespeare was an imbecile – I was in that group.
Tufty Taylor was our form master twice and had a severe humour bypass – I also remember the attempt to electrocute him.
Alan (Jack) Seargent – good bloke who steered me to a French O level.
Barrie Ford – another good ‘un. He actually wanted people to do well.
Bill Tunnicliffe – never had him as a teacher but can remember him on the platform during assemblies plucking his eyebrows.
Malcolm Landreth – I think he was our first year maths teacher – another subject I struggled in and slipped in to set three where Brian Docker tried to unravel the mysteries of logarithms and algebra and failed – we used to encourage him to tell his RAF stories which were much more interesting.
I hated Chemistry and regularly used to nick off, to such an extent in the fifth form the teacher (Budgie Byrne?) asked the class if I existed.
 
When we played football on the front pitch the ball was regularly hoofed over the wall causing almost everybody to run to climb over, only stopped by Hal Gibson shouting “only one of you”. I remember a great trip to Interlaken with Dan Matthews, Olly Beak and others , we stayed in a hotel with girls from a school in Somerset…………….
 
The class list for 66/67 was : Anderson, Bedi, Besford, Brydon, Craggs, Day, Deck, Dunn, Findlay, Forrest, A.Gibson, D.Gibson, Hurst, Jobson, Johnson, Jordan, Jeffries, Lovedale, Mckeegan, Mole, Myers, Perry, Russell, Stephenson, Soulsby, Stewart, Swan, Thompson, Walton.
 
I left with 4 O levels – the only person in the class not to stay on for A levels, when this came out Tufty berated me in front of the whole class and when he asked me why, my answer was I couldn’t stick another two years of this torture, he went blue. I think he was annoyed he hadn’t got the full set. Truth was I was hopeless in exams. Anyway a stint at The College of Further Education in Bath Lane got me three more. I slid in to the DHSS and then in 1970 went to Jersey and stayed for 20 years ending up as Retail Manager for The Jersey Milk Marketing. I came back to England as a Depot Manager for the CO-OP Creameries. I was made redundant and joined HMRC where I am a Manager of a contributions section.

John McLAUGHLIN (1955-1962) jillnjohn@worldnet.att.net

First, the obligatory capsule biography: after leaving the hallowed halls went to University of Newcastle, then University of Wales (Ph.D. in Applied Zoology). Subsequently suffered immediate culture shock by relocating to Athens, Georgia (U.S.A.). Since then I have been in research/teaching in Montreal, New York City finally landing in the Miami area in 1979. Currently live on the edge of The Everglades, spending most of my time fighting a tireless battle trying to maintain an orderly garden in a tropical climate - at present I am losing. My last two trips to Newcastle were were not under the best of circumstances, last year for my father's funeral and in '92 as refugees from Hurricane Andrew - latter event elevated insurance companies and building contractors to the top my public enemy list, a position occupied many years ago by one Hitler Henderson, which returns us to the subject of HGS.

Frankly, I loathed the institution remembering it under Barnes & Co. as a working class lads version of a minor public school. I recall first formers being addressed as a "fags", and those tediously drawn out house meetings, and of course as others have pointed out "Standard Points". Since I was not part of the first form soccer clique, I was from that time banned to the "scraps", and was from that time an athletic nonentity, save for a brief period when a misguided Ken Quickfall believed I possessed potential in the shot put. My abject lack of enthusiasm had the desired effect, and I was eliminated in the preliminary rounds of the City games. The only greater time waste than athletics were Duckenfield's French lessons, or was it a Duckenfield R.I. session - liable to make an agnostic out of the Pope.

Enough of the negative, for there were certainly some wonderful teachers and fellow pupils. Somebody already paid tribute to Dan Mathew, who tried to instill a love of literature in sixth science students, covering everything it seemed from Beowulf to Alan Sillitoe. He also took time to organise a film club, one of the few extra-curricular activities I looked forward to each Friday. My contemporaries included Ray Humphrey, see above, who I remember having prolonged leftist political diatribes with a totally frustrated Chris Tansley (third form English?). My immediate circle of cohorts were all from Sandyford, and included Ernie Hazelwood (who lives in Essex now - also has two brothers Alan and Ian who attended HGS), Alan Glendinning (who dropped in on us last Fall, and is living in Newcastle), Stephen Weir (who I last believe was living near Ottawa), as well as Geoff Spoors and Pete Mulholland. I wonder if John Lynch remembers Ernie Hazelwood, as you were in the same sixth modern, along with Jack Telford, who lives outside Newcastle after a long stint out in Hong Kong. Oh and to our webmasters Ian and Dave, canny site this yer naa. (Thanks..Dave)

Gary MARSHALL (1966-1972) GMBLADE@aol.com

I came to Heaton from West Walker Junior School with only three of us having passed our 11+ that year, Terrance Costello, Susan Hutton and myself. I can remember having to go to Isaac Waltons (?) to get my uniform and PE kit in House colours (Stephenson) and looking forward with some trepidation and lots of excitement to the first day. Getting there early with my cap on my head and waiting outside the gates to see if anyone was waiting to throw you into the sandpit as we had been told was the custom.

Catching the 19 or 19 duplicate to School. Coming from a relatively small school it was a bit of a shock to the system to be in a School of that size complete with Masters in Board & Gown and Prefects handing out lines/essays like no ones business usually on inane subjects like '' 200 words describing the inside of a Ping-Pong ball''.  

Heaton has many happy memories for me and reading other peoples entries has brought back even more! I remember Ken Quickfall in PE saying '' Hands straight down the seams of your shorts lad, fingers pointed, they only curl up when you are dead!'. ' Some of his PE lessons in the gym had us standing straight like trees and not lots of movement. Imagine our surprise when Pete Dowson arrived - we went into the gym for our first PE lesson with him and he had all the gymnastics gear out and asked us to show him what we could do - we all stood there looking a bit vacant and when he asked us what we could do.  I said '' We can pretend to be a tree sir! '' I will never forget his look of disgust but he soon had us working over boxes and using equipment that we had only looked at in the last year. Pete was one of the many staff at Heaton who had a massive influence over my life and others in my year.

Pete, Hal Gibson and later Don Burton (very good soccer player) along with all the other staff who taught PE or ran School Teams must have had a large impact on me personally, as I became a PE Teacher -(second subject English) and have taught for the last 23 yrs at Prudhoe High School.   I have never been back with any of my school teams to play any fixtures at Heaton, a source of great disappointment, but have played Staff Football on a Friday night over at the Manor Park site a few times.

Other staff who had an influence (some good, some bad) were:-

  • Ian Matthew - Gave me a love of literature and took me to SSC camps at Bruar.
  • Joe Messer - Taught me how to play poker dice on the SS Uganda among many other things.
  • Colin Kirkby - Excellent Form Tutor, persevered with my limited Maths skills, made Physics interesting.
  • 'Fitter' Armstrong - ' For two Pins......'' made Chemistry a laugh, we sat at the back and tried to do things like burn the locks of the cupboard doors with magnesium ribbon like the Man from Uncle, cooked bacon over the bunsen burners and made Nesquik drinks when he wasn't looking.
  • Metalwork- Like some of the other contributors to this site I didn't see eye to eye with my metalwork teacher, I could never seem to file both ends of a piece of metal square. I would put the setsquare across the end and it looked fine to me until I took it out for approval. When he (can't remember his name - Armstrong I think)? put his setsquare on it it looked like a steep hill ! I started with a piece about a foot long and ended up with it about two inches long before it was square. It was the smallest coat hook ever produced. I swear he had a secret setsquare that wasn't actually square!
  • Cunningham - History. Refused to pronounce my name as Gary, said it must be Gairy like Cary Grant as Gary should have two R's like Harry. Still I enjoyed History.
  • Westwell - Organised the trip on the Uganda, we tormented him by getting the DJ to play 'Pictures of Matchstick men' by Status Quo at every opportunity, but he was a good laugh.

Some of my contemporaries:-

  • Dave Storey - Great footballer and cricketer. We both went to Chester College to become PE teachers (Pete Dowsons influence).I have lost touch with Dave much to my shame and annoyance.
  • Tom Chapman - Another good footballer and rugby player. 'Fungus' Ferguson -Some great parties at his place listening to Wishbone Ash and Yes. He joined the Royal Navy.
  • Bob Harrison - another Wishbone fan, saw him a few times at concerts.
  • Eric ' Egger' Taylorson - Goalkeeper and always had the rest of us in stitches.
  • Dennis Leaman - Signed for Man City, we used to give him the ball when we were tired or needed a goal and he usually obliged.
  • Anne Harley - Good friend in the 6th Form
  • Catherine Webb - Another good friend in the 6th form Dave's girlfriend for a long time.
  • Ingrid Hudson - Always with Anne and Catherine. Haven't seen any of the girls for donkeys years.

Interesting/funny occurrences:

  • Putting a golf ball through one of the top floor classrooms from thebottom field during PE when Dave said he could fire an arrow further than I could hit the ball. Looked rather sheepish going into the classroom to get my ball back, even more sheepish in front of the Head.
  • SS Uganda - second time. In Palma, on top of a hill looking back at the ship seeing something black under our porthole - on closer inspection one of the first year lads had written 'NUFC' in big letters using his shoe polish. We all  got it in the neck for that one!
  • School camp in Aviemore, living on marmalade sandwiches for a week and Dave Storey having to walk back to the campsite ( about 6mls in the pitch black) from the Aviemore centre after tapping off at a disco but not getting to stay!
  • Going into the Hall to practice for a 6th form disco and getting thrown out because the Head's daughter's band got there first!
  • Seeing Massey Taylors gown stuck on the fence after the roof blew off, thought it was funny until he saw me laughing and sent me to fetch it, turned out it was one of the big black curtains from the lab windows.
  • House Drama competition - Playing Hamlet in ' Rosencrantz & Guildenstern are Dead'
  • Watching the Moon landing on a TV set in the Hall.
  • Dave, Tom and myself going to the same shop to buy black jackets instead of 6th form blazers.

Reading this site has brought back many memories and faces to which I cannot put names, must dig out some of the old photos I have and get them scanned and send them in!

Peter MICKLER (1954-1961)  peter.mickler@forrestals.co.uk

 I came across the attached old photograph showing 4B with their clean shiny faces. I have picked up a few names from the old memory bank and should be pleased to hear from anyone to fill in the blanks.

Having lived and worked in Newcastle for all of my 58 years (apart from 3 years at Leeds University) I am amazed that apart from Jeffrey Cawson, I have never ever knowingly come across any of my former mates - have you all emigrated from the area or joined the Civil Service or worse (jail!).

I was in the B form all the time apart from promotion to 3A and immediate relegation to 4B!   I have mostly fond memories of the old school with limited sporting achievements and modest academic attainments. I somehow got to University (it was easier in those days!), subsequently became a partner in a local firm of Chartered Accountants.    I recall two intellectuals of the A form, Keith Humble and Donald Rutherford who I am sure were destined for great things, probably becoming Cambridge Dons.

Most of the masters were real characters in their own way and particularly helpful were Messrs Clapperton, English and Spink. I remember poor Mr  Caird on his first day failing his initiation by having ink flicked on to the back of his immaculate white physics coat! I can also recall the renowned cricketer, Lewis Gordon, in one inglorious season who once did the double-100 runs and 10 wickets!

I have been married over 30 years with two kids who have long flown the nest.

If anyone can be bothered, I would like to hear from them who remembers me at my e-mail address.

Joe MIDDLEMISS (1946-1951) joemidd@msn.com

A bit about myself as requested, I am now (2002) 68 and have lived within sight of the School in Cleveland Gardens being married into this house in 1961, to Lesley (nee King). I am a semi retired Charted Structural Engineer.

I left Heaton School in 1951 and joined a Newcastle branch of a firm of Civil Engineering Consultants, and worked there before getting early retirement in 1990. Since then I have run my own structural consultancy, from 10 Cleveland Gardens.

Lesley was a pupil at Heaton High, under the dreaded Dr Henstock, and being a teacher herself, taught at the school, when it became a Comprehensive. Both our daughters attended the School as a comprehensive, and I have had many links with the place over the years. I attended Ken Quickfall's retirement do, and also a huge reunion at the Civic Centre on 14th July 2001.

My modest claim to fame at the School was to receive the War Memorial Prize for my form in 1951 and to play for various cricket and football teams, never in the scraps on the Himilayas! I am still into sport playing Tennis in the summer and Squash in the winter ,with Golf at Gosforth Golf Club all the year round. I also was in the chorus of two of the School's Gilbert and Sullivan productions

Graham MITCHELL (1958 -1965) graham.mitchell7@googlemail.com

1D, 2Miller, 3 Tansley, 4 Potter, 5 thingy and the 6th.

Having drifted through education without much motivation, I joined the old National Provincial, which became NatWest. Having worked, briefly, in Newcastle I then spent time in Stockton before moving to Cumbria where I worked up and down the West Coast in such scintillating places as Workington and Barrow In Furness.

Married in 1975 and now live in Ramsbottom, Lancs with wife and son who is presently (2001) 15 and about to start 5th year at the local (feepaying) Grammar School. He, unlike his dad, is doing very well at school and seems set for University.

I, despite working for a bank and being over 50, am still in a job. No-one has ever offered me early retirement. I did manage branches, but I specialised in 1995 and I am now a Quality Control Manager on the Personal Financial Planning side (investments and pensions, etc.).

March 2011: Retired from banking after a full 40 years (unusual tenacity). I started work locally in 2005 for a national firm of IFAs and now work from home as their Compliance Manager - making sure they keep to the rulebook and making sure that they are competent to give advice. I visit them in their offices up & down the country - and teach trainees - who'd have thought it, me a teacher with 5 O-levels and one "A"!

My wife and I are both actively involved (she says too actively) in our local amateur theatre group and our son, now 25, is settled in his own home in York and works as a Computer Systems Developer. Trips to the North East are few and far between as relatives die off or move away, but I still visit occasionally, if only to verify distant memories as true. As 65 approaches next year I intend to reduce work commitments and take things a little easier; perhaps I will even make a reunion!

February 2016: In October 2012 Helen & I moved from our home of 30 years in Ramsbottom Lancashire over the Pennines to the fair City of York. Despite my intentions of sitting back and “retiring” life has taken a new turn or two. My then national chain of Independent Financial Advisers employer closed in 2012 and I was made redundant, only to be contracted as a compliance consultant dealing with historic issues that arise regarding past advice. I have since tried to retire twice, but the keep offering me an increased retainer to stay so it would be rude not to, especially as it does not take up much time each week (and the redundancy paid for the house move).

Now just turned 69 I am more active across a range of ventures than ever before. I am Vice Chair of three linked charities in York, Selby & Scarborough whose principle aims are the reuse of decent furniture and electricals, assisting the less well off in having decent homes and providing work experience for the long – term unemployed. In addition I am secretary and fundraising director for Joseph Rowntree Theatre in York. This is a volunteer run 360 seat fully working theatre used by local amateur groups as well as dance schools and musicians of various genres. This year I have initiated the annual York Community Choir Festival at the theatre in which local choirs with all sorts of ability and repertoire share the stage over a number of nights just for the joy of singing (this by a man whose singing ability is highly questionable). Other plans for developing the theatre are in process of being formulated so that its availability and range of activity can be increased to provide even more opportunities for local people and organisations.

Our son Richard (a computer programmer and web developer) is married and we now have a grandson born July 2015, when we were celebrating our 40th wedding anniversary in the far south west of Cornwall. They live about a mile away from us in York and we see them regularly as a result.

I almost forgot, we have taken on a full scale allotment, just in case we got lazy and also to keep the weight off. It does allow me to get away from day to day matters and not think about problems at the charities (or work) and provides a lovely breathing (but laborious) breathing space in the open air.


Duncan MOFFETT (1952-1959) duncan.moffett@gmail.com

My name is Duncan Moffett and I was a pupil from 1952 to 1959.At present I am working for British Aerospace in Saudi, having spent most of my working life as an expatriate.

I think of my old school with a great deal of affection,particularly my final years in the sixth form. As far as I know I am the only one of my peer group still working,with the exception of Dave Shepherd in Brazil. Where did I go wrong ?

 Steve MOORE (1954-1959) stephenjmoore100@hotmail.com

Due to the amazing 11 plus exam, which probably affected my life more than any other event, I was selected to attend good old Heaton Grammar School commencing Sept 1954 to plod through the usual 5 years in an uneventful way to finish up in July 1959, passing only three subjects, to my parent's mortification. At the time it didn't worry me at all. Playing football in the school yard whenever possible was really what life was all about!

Being born in August made me one of the youngest in my year. Consequently I started work at age 16 years and one month, in September 1959 as a clerical assistant with the Post Office Telephones in Newcastle. (That was when my real education began, as I woke up to the fact that the love of football alone would not get me very far.)

I lived at 11 Stanway Drive, High Heaton. At HGS my forms were 1d, 2c, 3c, 4c, 5c. My first success was to get a place on the Armstrong House Junior football team. Later, it was impossible to make it on to the Intermediate and Senior teams, because there were just so many brilliant players competing for a spot. Armstrong House accomplished the dubious distinction, during my tenure, of being academically useless, but brilliant at sports! My next success was to make a tray in three years for Timber Willy. I remember my workmanship was terrible and my parents protested the high cost of the wood and materials, but when they had the flu it did actually get used once in a while. My final success was to get 65% in Geography 'O' Level.  I notice that other old boys have mentioned how good a teacher Tich Fullarton was. I didn't realize it at the time, but as I only got 50% for English Literature and 45% for alternative Maths, and failed the rest, he must have been really, really good. Hats off to Tich!

Now to the failures! Sneb Healy rated my singing abilities as "half cat power". Singing a solo for Sneb was to know and fully understand the meaning of humiliation. Raggy Rowell's biting sarcasm was well known, but I seemed to escape most of it, because he knew I lived fairly close to him. Puggy Walker thought I'd eaten my fish and chips off the paper I was drawing on. Flash Gordon and "when you're with me O'Byrne" were the two teachers who seemed to appreciate us the most. We enjoyed their classes and they were good guys. The older teachers were no doubt proficient, but we were treated like worms at times.

Looking back, I'm very thankful that I attended HGS. In the fifties in the North East there weren't a lot of opportunities for an education. In later years in Canada and travelling elsewhere I have found that Geordies are very well accepted and it has opened doors for getting ahead.

In January 1966 I emigrated to Canada. The Toronto Dominion Bank paid my fare to cross the Atlantic. I worked for them for three and a half years. In 1969 I went back to school and took business administration. (The next best thing I ever did after the eleven plus!)

I've lived in Toronto, married in Montreal, moved to Halifax, moved back to Ontario in 1979 and now live in Burlington. (Three kids, no grandchildren)

Old boys in my year, that I remember well: Peter Armstrong, Ronnie Amann, Curly Johnston, Frank Gibson, Les Stephenson, Mel Watson, John Waterworth, Evans, Lough, Horend, Bopper Barnes, Eddie Crossley, Alex McGregor, George Bright, Roy Cull, Eggy Connell, David Chrisp and John Chrisp. Long live the lads! We had a great time together. Love the nostalgia.

Hope the HGS Homepad continues to grow. Thanks Dave. Met Ian Dale, with Dave Reed and we had a good time.

Doug MORAN (1955-1960) douglasfmoran@gmail.com

Someone once told me that nostalgia's not as good as it used to be. Having just viewed the HGS Old Boy's contact site, I'm not so sure.

1C, 2C, 3C, 4C, 5C - a star of mediocrity! If only I could turn back the clock ..... I'm sure I could have followed the A or B stream "clever buggers" and fulfilled the latent promise that one or two of our more perceptive teachers had recognised!

Recollections are many and varied. I remember lots of the staff and other boys, not to mention some of the girls from Heaton High School, next door. Whoever would forget those sunny summer evenings in Paddy Freeman's Park with Madeleine Goddard, Christine Morrison, Pat Bastin and Toni Howard ....... formative years those !

Teachers I remember include:

Ron (Bob) Cherry - I used to see him fairly regularly, (last time in about October 2000), propping up the bar in the Green Room of the People's Theatre (in what used to be the Lyric Cinema). He recalled with a shudder the first night of the school's 1960 production of Julius Caesar, when the audience (all school-children) went berserk after Caesar's assassination, developing a chilling blood lust. Sadly, Ron passed away some years ago.
"Timber Willie" Waldron - "analyse that and you'll find it perfectly correct", being one of his unforgettable pet phrases.
"Johnny Bat" (a.k.a. Satan) Simpson - my introduction to the French language. I've had an aversion to all things French ever since, (well, almost all!!).
"Kytie" Clapperton - I still can't understand how he managed to stand upright.
"Beefy" Bamborough - that little office of his next to the physics laboratory was probably still a health hazard until the day the buildings were demolished.
Lewis (Flash) Gordon - part time cricketer who (somehow) once managed to score 115 in some fairly major game in 1955. Also brother-in-law to a mate of mine ..... better not say too much more.
"Sammy" Friend - prone to the odd tantrum!
"Hitler" Henderson - the name tells it all.
"Puggie" Walker - was he really such a cynic, or did he just have a very dry sense of humour? I've never witnessed such an immobile football match referee ..... just rooted to one spot on the touch-line, whistle in mouth, (alternating with the odd cigarette).
"Cornelius" Caird - nervously fingering the light switch in a darkened physics lab., during a light experiment - alert for the first sounds of bother.
"The Bloggs" Barnes - as I recall, a humourless soul.
"Big Bill" Tunnicliffe - a serious wielder of the cane!
Edgar (Chris) Tansley - an alleged communist activist - how many red ties did that man own?
Ken (Green Blazer) Quickfall - all theory and little action - maybe 40 Woodbines a day had tainted his performance a bit.

Boys from my year that I recall include:

David (Rubberlugs) Bennett - still in touch and see him several times a year.
Alan (Horace) Wild.
Dixon (Dick) Hall - now living in Alnmouth.
Malcolm (Tub) Smallwood - subsequently excelling in catering.
Peter (Whiskers) Barrington - he went to Canada, but we keep in touch and often meet up during his visits to UK.
Clive Page - no nick-name ........ funny that, bearing in mind his skills as an author.
Alan Egdell - an excellent swimmer, often seen sharpening his finger nails to a point, prior to a game of water-polo.
Leslie Solomon - suffered the indignity of being too heavy to be weighed by the machine during his 5th year school leaving medical. They didn't have enough weights and had to borrow some from the physics lab., much to Hitler's amusement.

I remember being caned twice. Three stokes (courtesy of Big Bill Tunnicliffe) for owning a football that some other boys were playing with in the form-room (strict disciplinarian, that Barnes chap). Three more strokes for "attempted murder", when I innocently stuffed a potato up the exhaust pipe of "Old Nick's" motor-bike. Apparently it could have caused the engine to suddenly stall and he could have been propelled over the handle-bars. Someone saw me in the act ........ I never found out who. If it was you, please let me know ........ I'm now 6 feet 4 inches, 16 stones and have a wicked temper!!

After leaving in 1960, clutching my 5 "O" levels, I spent a couple of hated years in the civil service, after which I went into the construction industry and qualified as a chartered builder. After eight years in Saudi Arabia and Oman, I spent many years as a project manager with a large firm of consulting engineers, most recently looking after a major reclamation project just west of Newcastle, where Stella North power station used to be.

Married to Dianne in 1969 and proud father of Sarah and Simon, both of whom have (understandably) outshone me on the academic front. They are now both happily married and have blessed me with three of the most gorgeous grand-children. I still live close to the old school, in South Gosforth, where the old convent used to be at the bottom end of the "Tram-Track".

I'd love to hear from anyone who remembers me at my e-mail address.

Christopher MORGAN (1958-1965) chrismorgan4@btinternet.com

I joined Heaton from West Jesmond and entered 1B under Hal Gibson, an old boy. I believe he may still have been Deputy Head of Heaton Manor as recently as 1995. Harry Askew was new that year, too. First day we discovered that wearing those bright new caps we had been so proud of was not the thing to do - unless you wanted to recover them from the caretaker's garden. I avoided the traditional fags bumping in the sandpit.

Russell Wear and I had been train-spotters (I admit it - seems he's never got away from trains) and were active organisers of the first form stamp club - I recall over 100 turning out for one of our meetings, not bad out of about 124 in the year.

That first year I managed an A for French under Aiden Nicholson, the pinnacle of my linguistic achievement. His talk of fire watching at the school during the war, and descriptions of the trenches in Flanders, Paris during the First War, and the mysteries of vintage wines I'd never heard of clearly kept my attention. (Despite later getting only 9% in the O Level mocks I was entered for the exam, and duly failed.) Ken Quickfall told us he'd teach us all to swim. I still can't.

2Sy (Storey), came next, Mr Askew's bright idea to avoid the stigma of A B C & D classes. My most vivid memory of that year was English under Mr Stewart. First lesson five detentions in the first five minutes. Even timid me was in fear of attracting his wrath. His hob-nailed boot would crash firmly down on the front desk in the row. Nobody moved. Lines? No such luxury. Write out The Rhyme of The Ancient Mariner - all of you. And that was just for being rowdy when another master hadn't turned up on time. We all did it though. This sadistic bully (oh yes, you were) knew his English, and had the neatest, and smallest handwriting I can remember. I did kop for it one day. As he paced up and down the rows he went behind me. I didn't dare turn round. Wham**! His hand crashed across the back of my head without any warning. Nothing was said. I still don't know what I'd done. I didn't dare ask. I certainly didn't dare tell anyone. Is it too late to sue?

3Mo(rton) was another year I was glad to see pass. The wall above my desk was painted cream, and was liberally splattered with the marks of wet footballs, peaches, and floor clothes that all seemed to head in my direction. Thanks guys, it was fun! I know they weren't all really aimed at me - or were they? Those days on the sports field stuck in goal for the scraps team (the ones that couldn't make it to the 1st, 2nd or 3rd) - it was b...y freezing. Remember that poor little guy fresh from college who tried to teach us French? Ended up talking to about 6 at the front. Was it Alan Brown who asked if we could do our English homework? And he said, Yes. Anything to cool some of the howling mob! He didn't last long, but that was the death knell to any lingering chance of linguistic skill for many of us.

4Pt (Potter) dragged by, and 5Ty (Tansley) is now a blur.

In 1961 we all, or nearly all, went off on the BI Lines converted troopship, Dunera to Corunna, Gibraltar and Lisbon. That would make a page on it's own. Lessons cancelled due to seasickness, Tufty Taylor's as much as anyone's' as far as I recall. And who nicked my bunk one night? At least you did put it back - eventually. Those West Ham kids on the deck above never stood a chance from the Heaton marauders. Remember fart cricket? All those baked beans for breakfast, lunch and tea certainly helped that sport. 6 and out, remember?

I did get a few O Levels, eventually, so drifted into the 6th Form. There I enjoyed school for the first time. Too late. Those O Level results had lacked credibility. Written off for any academic achievement. Edgar Tansley seemed to inspire with Chaucer, Shakespeare, Milton, Sheridan, Keats etc, subtle left wing political indoctrination, and tales of Yoko Ono making a film of bare bottoms - before she met John Lennon! Even Harry (?) Frost managed to drum Economics into me, and respect for the way he'd worked his way through university as a cinema projectionist. Geography was a breeze with Frank Laughton and Titch Fullerton, but nobody was more surprised than myself to find I'd actually got 3 A Levels.

A rare achievement as Chairman of The Debating Society was to instigate the first ever joint debate with the girls from Heaton High. We had held an annual home and away debate with the Church High for many years, but this one took some organising. True to form, at the end of the meeting they went out their entrance, and we went out ours. No fraternising, please. Dr Henstock ruled with a rod of iron!

Tony Knight and I organised and judged the master's colour slide competition for the Photographic Society, and had the opportunity to say what we thought about Hitler's handiwork, among others. To be fair there were some good photographers on the staff at that time.

For career planning I saw the Headmaster. "What do you want to do, Morgan?" "I'd like to be a teacher, sir." "No, boy, you should go into banking or insurance". Being an obedient lad, I did. 6 months later I was the junior clerk in Lloyds Bank, Osborne Road - one of whose customers was H E Askew, another Ken Quickfall.

Then via various branches in the North-East, Kendal, Catterick Camp, and Hull to Sheffield with early retirement as manager of the Sheffield University branch when the Lloyds/TSB merger arrangements decreed that bank managers were no longer required - particularly those over 50. I'd already become somewhat jaundiced at having to push insurance/protection policies that I would not have recommended to any friend or relative.

Married, 2 sons, both graduated, one in chemistry and management from York, the other in economics and business management from Newcastle. Both already doing very well, and a tribute to some of the academic ideals instilled in their father at HGS. Success by proxy! Eldest son is actually a good sportsman, having played in the same Sheffield Collegiate junior cricket team as Michael Vaughan.

Spoke briefly to Paul Hughes a few years ago when his son was at Sheffield Hallam University. Still see Antony/Tony Knight (now in Canterbury with Barclays) from time to time. Otherwise have lost contact with all other Heatonians - apart from Russell Wear that I have just found via this website. Seems we share a passion for Family History now. Must be our age!

PS I sent off my cheque for 10/6 to the Old Boys Association back in 1965, but they never banked it. It's good to know a few still care.

Jim MURRAY (1961-1966) Jimmur@netunltd.com.au

A little about myself in terms of HGS: I was there from 1961-1966. My biggest influence (apart from spending the breaks down at the adjoining wall with Heaton High School) was Ian Matthew, alias "Dan". He fostered a love of the English language which I still have, especially literature. I tried to locate him the last time I was in Newcastle, (1996) but was unsuccessful, much to my regret. I knew that he had lived in Fenham from the 60's. I had put it off for years so he may no longer be with us. I just wanted to thank him for the good years he gave our class.

I have some thrilling pics of Big Bill, Timber Willy (lovely fella'-noted catchphrase: "Awful offal"), Hal Gibson, Harry Askew, and not forgetting the sports stars of the school including: Jimmy Nelson, Ken Sloane, Harvey Burns, Alan Glendinning, and a few dozen others. Where am I living these days? Well, I ended up in Perth, WA, having met and married a girl from there whilst I was still living in the UK. I work as a special needs teacher with an independent school. I have been in Perth going on 20 years.(September 1977)

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