Thrybergh Ravenfield Dalton

South Yorkshire England

            Pronounced locally Thrybur  Old English Triberg

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JOHN DOXEY'S SCHOOL MEMORIES

" How I spent ten years discovering I wasn't a genius"


I would like to say welcome to the children and Staff of the School who are using the site to research the history of Thrybergh. Please consider this your page, contact me should you have any questions, or would like to add information on this page.

Please note this is not an official School site, anyone wishing to contact the School should do so via the School contact  information.

 

 

 

 

 

Class Photo taken approx 1955-56
Kindly provided by John Raynor and Linda "Connell" Gill

Back Row Miss Devoto Teacher, Alan Wood Michael Muldownie Roy Campsall Terry Brennan , Margaret Brown Nora Kilgallon Catherine Tyas unknown, Christine Foster Mr. Conroy Headmaster
Third Row ? ? Stephen Rogan ,John Killeen [ I think ] Brian Farmer Thomas Higgins John Bonner, Jimmie Hughes Owen Brown Michael Gurran, Unknown [ Wraith ? ] Christopher Morris John Doxey,
Second row Annie Hague, Christine Robinson, Mary Malone, ? Judith Dearing, Marie Wood, ? Kathleen Hughes, Margaret O Brian, Linda Connell, Sheila Farmer
Front row Kenny Pool, John Raynor, Terry Fleming
Anyone know the missing names?

 

 

 

KICKING OFF TO A GOOD START [ I don't think ! ]
Now according to my sister one of the first things I did at School was to kick Mary Brown the teacher, of course I have no memory of this honest!, but I am glad she forgave me and played the organ at my wedding [ Much later on in my life ] I can only imagine that I would have had my legs slapped for this misdemeanour.  It was in Mary Browns class that I started to develop my reading skills, learned how to daydream during Maths, and came to the conclusion that School was a big infringement on my free time.

Like most kids who hated school I developed every illness known to mankind during my school years, particularly on a Monday morning, but despite these life threatening occurrences I was sent to school anyway.


ACADEMIC
Best under the desk sketch artist during maths lessons.
Fastest reader [ True, I still have the award for reading 100 books in six months during school hours presented by Miss Wallwork  when I was about eight. I have a natural speed reading capability, a pity speedy calculations did not come with it.]
Several awards of the slipper and cane for behaviour.

 

SPORT
Made first place several times in the daily no holds barred end of lesson classroom door five metre sprint.

 

MUSIC SOOTHES THE SOUL


Own up how many of you got in trouble for deliberately singing the wrong words to Christmas Carols at School, words like
 

We three Kings of orient are,
One in a taxi, one in a car,
One on a scooter papping his hooter,
Following yonder Star.


No wonder the teachers were allowed to hit us back then

How many of you fell asleep listening to the radio lessons in the main Hall, as the introductory music would start dan da dan, dan da dan, your eyelids would  start heading towards your nose, dan da dan your head would make its way to your knees, dan da dan your little useless brain would shut down and head towards the stars and oblivion, as the presenter informed you that once again you were going to listen to the story of Peter and the Wolf. I mean who really cared about the fate of Peter , the only thing we cared about in those lessons was "When is it going to end"

 

I don't think the B. B. C. knew any other stories back then, didn't they know of Dan Dare, Hopalong Cassidy, Roy Rogers, Desperate Dan, Dennis the Menace and other great classics. Often the only thing you remembered about the lesson was dan da dan, dan da dan , dan da dan.


With the advent of Skiffle in the mid fifties a young Dominic Mullins and two other pupils formed a skiffle group and were allowed to visit each classroom one day to give a little performance , we thought they were great. Much better than the radio lessons.
I remember a School concert in which we were asked to get up and sing or recite something, so my friend at the time Tony Jezoirski and I got up there on stage, and absolutely murdered the song Cathy's Clown, we concluded after all the laughter had finished that maybe comedy suited us better.

 

 

 

HOTSHOTS
How accurate were the teachers , they never missed with that piece of chalk to the back of the head when you were caught looking out the window. They must have passed degrees in chalk chucking in College If they were really angry you discovered that they were just as accurate with the wooden Blackboard Duster , now that did hurt. [ It is my reflection upon School life Worldwide today that, back then you received your punishment and that was the end of it, today if a child gets in trouble there are detentions , suspensions, expulsions, threats from parents to take legal action and a whole lot of issues that often take months to resolve at a great cost. Meanwhile the child involved is often put under a lot more stress than if he or she had simply received the cane.]


THE SCHOOL DENTIST V PAINLESS PETE


The School Dentist was at all times to be avoided, I only went once, and was sitting in the waiting room when I heard a girl's screams coming from the surgery. The Dentist was shouting at her. That was enough for Doxey I bolted out of that waiting room and didn't stop running until I got back to School. I tore up all future invites to that little chamber of horror's. Thankfully today visiting the dentist is a more pleasant experience.
[ Here in Sydney I found a local Dentist called ' Painless Pete  I cater for Cowards' yes that was the dentist for me.]


HEAD FOR THE HILLS
We did not have to many School outings, I remember we went into Derbyshire once which was great fun. As soon as we got there Lunch was declared and we were told not to wonder off. So of course we all disappeared over the hills and the teachers spent most of the day looking for us.
Fatty Bowens had three nice little ponds, and as kids we used to sneak down there in wintertime during School lunchtime and make some great slides across the frozen ponds. That is until a boy from nearby Maltby named Francis Skelton fell through the ice, we got him out of there, but lets just say we received a somewhat icy reception on our return to School with the shivering shaking Francis
Often if we had a few coins we would sneak out at Lunch time and go to the shop halfway up the hill on Doncaster Road and buy liquorice root. A penny each [ those were the days]

 

THE SCHOOL ARSENAL
Remember when we used to construct our own classroom utilities, like the matchstick gun, made with an hairgrip [ bobby pin ] the thick rubber seal found on the old Tizer, Dandelion and Burdock, and Lemonade bottle tops, and a small piece of flat timber. I do not know the year or inventor of this  but another great British invention was born.

 

Other useful utilities included the simple elastic band catapult for firing folded paper, if you really wanted to leave your mark with this weapon and increase the velocity, you dipped the paper in the inkwell prior to firing. Pea shooters made from reeds, and loaded with wild berries of just the right diameter, were a very accurate weapon. Not forgetting the close range deadly ink flicker also known as the old School pen. Yes indeed those were dangerous times we lived in.


The end of year Christmas  parties, you took your own plate and cutlery which nine times out of ten got lost, and the party ended with the bun fight, we all enjoyed them. Virginia Marshall recalls I remember the Christmas party, when the senior pupils made trimmings and paper hats for the infant classes.  I also remember that Fosters were very generous with an apple for every child one year and also Mr Cartlidge from the papershop donating sweets.


HOPPING MAD
True story but the names have been withheld to protect the guilty !
It was the time of year when frogs were plentiful and one of the Maltby pupils came up with a wonderful idea, why not as a special treat [ ahem !] for the teacher take some frogs back to the classroom, and put them in his desk. We all thought now that is a brilliant conception to take nature into the class [ ahem !] .

 

That lunchtime we grabbed as many frogs as we could and stuffed them into our pockets. Of course the teacher was somewhat amazed to find us all back in the classroom somewhat early, all looking very attentive for a change. We waited expectantly for the moment he would open his desk drawer, ten minutes of mounting suspension. The moment arrived, well if the Ghost of Mr. Chips had appeared before him I doubt he would have been as shocked as the sight of around 30 frogs in his desk, while he was staring in disbelieve and we were laughing, the frogs were jumping out of the desk. Furiously the teacher ordered us to catch the frogs and take them all outside, so we spent ten rapturous minutes chasing frogs and removing them .


Did we get punished ? you bet your bottom dollar we did! It has to be said that for quite sometime after this episode our teacher looked very nervous when opening his desk drawer.

 

Owen Kavanagh 
[ The master of the quick come back ]

 

Owen Kavenhagh Photo courtesy of St. Gerards SchoolIf you thought you were pretty witty and quick on a response to a question then you were no where in the league of Owen Kavanagh. I recall one lunch time in the main Hall I was eating my dinner when suddenly someone grabbed my hair at the back of my neck and stood me up on my feet in front of the whole School. "Now then Doxey why don't you have your hair cut, you are beginning to look like General Custer" boomed the voice of Owen Kavanagh. Everyone laughed so I quickly replied " Well sir if I have it cut, it just grows again" More laughter. Without even thinking about it Owen Kavanagh shot me down in flames with " The answer to that Doxey is, why eat your dinner when you are going to eat your Tea [ Evening Meal}" Even more laughter
As Eric Morecombe the comedian used to say " There's no answer to that.


If you thought you were right and everybody else was wrong, well Owen Kavenagh had a little story about that too. He would tell of the day little Johnny's Mum went to watch her son marching in a parade, and as the parade went by she remarked loudly " Just look at that there's only my Johnny who's marching in step".


 It has to be said that I spent my early School years living in fear of reaching  Owen Kavanagh's class, all the older kids used to say " Just wait till you get in Kavanaghs class" Well I spent my final year at St. Bernard's School Herringthorpe in his class, and for the first time I actually enjoyed the lessons, and started learning.

 

We had a joking repartee going and of course if there were guinea pigs needed in the science lessons, well guess who got the job. As a  guinea pig I learned that an electric current passed through the bodies of four boys holding hands gives you an almighty pain in the elbows, causes spasmodic fits of laughter to the onlookers, and makes you wish you had stayed home sick that day.  Though I think the four of us actually invented the first rap dancing steps in the process.

 

He once informed me in front of the whole class that my brother Peter and his mate Peter Kilgannon were known as the school Horizontal Champions at St. Gerard's, because they would still be in bed when the rest of the school had started!


In that final year at School I was to gain a great respect for this man who ruled his realm of the classroom, but found time for humour, as long as you didn't overstep the mark.
Years later I met Mr. Kavanagh at the railway station in Rotherham, he had changed little, a big smile and a friendly handshake, and we had a very nice conversation, afterwards I reflected that I had once foolishly lived in fear of this man.
Owen Kavanagh's parents lived at Rawmarsh and he also had a sister that taught at the Rawmarsh School.
He became the Headmaster at a School in Maltby I believe.

 

In recent times I received an email from Owen and he remarked how much he had enjoyed the site, and found this page very enjoyable though he was quite amazed that I hadn't roasted him somewhat. Well there may be one or two ex pupils wondering that, but how can you roast a man whose final school report as my teacher helped to gain me my first job, and with all due respect to my other teachers, he was the first one to make learning enjoyable for me. Besides which, little old me taking on the master of the quick comeback in a verbal exchange would be a "no contest"

Thanks Owen


Šopyright 2007 John Doxey

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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STATEMENT :

I have no affiliation  with any Trade Union, Political body, or organization regarding the information on this site. All information on this site is Factual and correct to the extent of my knowledge. There is no intent to cause offence to any individual. Should you spot an error please let me know  and that error will be corrected.

PEASE NOTE:

This site is the result of over 7 years research, and compilation, should you wish to use any of the content for publication of literature please contact me. The poetry and life of James Ross, the story of St. Leonard's Cross, and other items on this site were compiled, and first published on this site in their present context as a study of Thrybergh. If you use this site as a source, out of courtesy, please give credit where it is due as I have done on this site where appropriate.
All text and pages as formatted and presented on this site Copyright John Doxey and may not be reproduced under any circumstances without consent. Photos, and information Copyright to Primary Sources where applicable