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Red Hill School, located in the small village of East Sutton in England's south-eastern county of Kent, was set up before the Second World War by Otto Shaw, who was also the founding secretary of the Association of Workers for Maladjusted Children (AWMC). Apparently the school was funded in part by the Government and was rapidly restricted to boys, although it was intended at first to handle male and female pupils alike, with no particular regard for their intelligence or other traits, merely that they had ‘run off the rails’. The focus of the school soon became boys of high intelligence - who might otherwise become manipulators of people, or general threats to society if allowed to grow up without help and without an understanding of their own particular motivations and the impact that they might have on individuals and society at large. A special permission was sought and granted that the school should not be required to hold a religious morning service every day. In this regard, it was ahead of its time. It later proved to be ahead of its time in many other ways.
I joined Red Hill in November 1954, at the age of thirteen, and left in July 1959 aged eighteen and a half. In those almost 5 years, I experienced many changes and much growth. The growth would not have been possible without the school’s nurturing environment. Thinking back, the experience was good and I have much to thank them for.
The school was run as an effective democracy, with both Community Meetings and regular courts. Courts were held on Tuesdays and Friday afternoons, and the Community meeting was held every other Sunday at 10 am (this ensured that it had to complete its business by 12, so as to allow the hall to be cleared, tidied and set up for lunch). Attendance at all three meetings was mandatory if one was in school grounds, unless one had special permission from the Staff on Duty, to stay away.
Internal order was maintained primarily by the boys, backed up when necessary by Staff. Every boy had an Account, held at the school (paid for by the parents) into which was paid one shilling each week (this seemed like riches to me in 1954, when a shilling was a considerable amount of money). This account was the determining factor as to whether a boy was considered to be in good standing within the community, or bad standing - a Debtor. Staff had the power to fine individuals for offenses against the community, and if the fine was more than was held in the boy’s account, then he became a "Debtor" and was immediately subject to some loss of privileges. Debtors were ‘gated’ as a matter of course - they could not leave school grounds without special permission from the Staff Member on Duty for that day - to go to a doctor, for example. They also lost the privilege of leisure time. There were trivial tasks about the school, for which boys could be paid and so it was possible to earn one’s way out of Debt. Arbitrary Fines could be appealed in the Court as well. Staff were not permitted (and the Court upheld this) to impose fines for personal cheek, assaults or other bad behaviour by a boy, aimed at that particular staff member. To redress personally aimed bad behaviour, a member of staff had to charge the boy in Court.
The Court comprised two Benchmembers (BMs) and one Citizen. These were boys who had proven their stability and reliability over a period of time. On the court, the Chairman was always a "BM", although the other BM and the Citizen had an equal say. In the event of a tie, the Chairman had the casting vote. If a matter arising did not seem to have a clear-cut decision, or if the evidence presented was not clear, the Court tended towards leniency. I was charged once, with carving my name into a table in the Library (the evidence was indisputable) - and was fined two shillings and sixpence - two and a half weeks of pocket money. I was shocked and thought it most unfair- other boys had also carved their names into the same table. It took about that time to earn off the debt - I certainly did not want them to take away my money for sweets and tobacco! I think I earned the money polishing floors within the old part of the building and in the magnificent staircase. Boys could and did charge members of staff with bullying, being ‘unfair’ in some decision or other and similar trivial matters. On a few, rare occasions, staff were fined by the Court. I do not know if they paid their fines or not, except in one case: Tom Forsythe (name has been changed) charged Shaw with reckless driving. Apparently, Tom had been bicycling from school to Sutton Valence, along the very narrow lanes. Shaw had come up behind Tom, in his enormous (or so it seemed) Jaguar Mark IX and - obviously very gently - pushed Tom with his front bumper - presumably to go faster, so they could get to a place where Shaw could overtake the boy and proceed on his way. But Tom was quite distraught about this and felt that Shaw was out to ’get’ him (but admitted that there was no damage to his bike, only to his personal sense of dignity). The upshot was that Shaw did not deny the case, but rather felt that it was an uproarious joke. The Court fined Shaw 5 shillings, which in this case was to go to Forsythe’s account. Shaw dug in his pocket and paid up then and there.
Shaw of course had final ‘appeal’ rights over any decision of the Court. Within my recollection, both as an ordinary boy there and later, when I became a Benchmember, Shaw never used that power. As Principal of the school, Shaw also had the power of inflicting corporal punishment. As far as I am aware, he never made use of that power either.
Citizens acted as the policemen of the community - and as enforcers, in a very limited sense. They had the power to eject a boy from a common room, classroom, music room or library, etc., if he was making a disturbance, for example. If the boy refused to move, then the other boys in the room would be asked to leave, and the ‘offender’ would be charged in Court by the Citizen, for whatever - making a disturbance, interfering with other people’s rights to use the facility, etc. Charges made by a Citizen were not treated lightly and the Courts tended to be more severe towards offenders who insisted on making other people’s lives miserable. Citizens were also tasked with ensuring that Debtors did not slack, but were actively employed at all free times, earning off their debt to society. Citizens could assign work to debtors. There were sometimes arguments as to how much a particular ‘job’ was worth - obviously it was in the Debtor’s interest to maximize the ‘pay’ he received for a given job - equally, the Citizens needed (perhaps to bolster their self-image?) to appear tough, so that ordinary members of the Community would not try to take advantage. In this they were successful: the Citizens had a reputation for being hard, but fair. Benchmembers were generally a soft touch by comparison.
Benchmembers (usually called BMs) within this community had considerably greater powers. More, even than a magistrate has in the real world. They had approximately the same power as members of Staff - they could ‘gate’ a boy - that is, they could ban that boy from leaving school property; and could, like the Citizen, insist that a boy leave a facility forthwith, or cease some activity that was found to be harmful, interfering or annoying to others; if the boy refused to comply, the BM could levy immediate and arbitrary fines to that boy’s Account - thus making the boy an instant Debtor, with appropriate loss of privileges. Again the boy could appeal the fine in the Court, but, with the witnesses concerned, it was unlikely that the whole fine would be repealed. It might be lessened however. Thus members of the community learned to behave themselves and to function better. Towards the end of my stay, inflation had finally entered the school and boys were permitted to be supplied with more than one shilling per week by their parents. There was a concomitant increase in the amount of fines. When I was a BM, I remember fining one boy - he had broken several windows while playing with a ball too close to the school buildings - I fined him one Pound - less than the cost of actually replacing the glass - but to my chagrin, when he appealed the fine in Court, it was reduced to five shillings. So I learned to temper my ‘enthusiasm’ for power with some realism. I don’t think I fined anyone after that.
Individual boys could charge one another with offenses - real or imaginary - and witnesses could be heard. On a couple of occasions, a boy was charged with an imaginary offense. The complainant was adjudged to be making up stories and was fined instead - this went a long way towards reducing the time spent on unnecessary charges. We had never heard of the phrase " a vexatious litigant" - such as was applied by the High Court in London to the singer Rosemary Squires years later (banning her from bringing any further civil cases), but our Court was able to deal with such a matter effectively.
Most importantly, within my memory, there was no FEAR in the school. At a previous school, which had a long tradition of beating boys into submission, I had been (as all other boys were) subject to several "initiation rituals" which involved shame, humiliation, fear and pain. The memory of those days will last with me for the rest of my life. In addition to these ‘minor’ afflictions, the staff and senior boys had the right (my parents had had to sign a letter authorizing the school to inflict corporal punishment whenever it deemed it necessary), yes the RIGHT, and almost an obligation to subject the boys to quite severe beatings for next to no cause. I had been beaten several times for minor infractions, the last such beating drawing blood. I remember the master who inflicted that last beating being surprised by my tears - and complaining that I was crying over nothing - until he saw the fresh blood on my pajamas - at which he sent me back to my house. There they took me to the Sanatorium and my "scratches" were dressed, but nothing else was said (and of course, it was not reported to anyone). I lived in real fear of that particular master until I left that boarding school and moved to Red Hill. It took some time before I learned to treat senior boys and members of staff with anything but dread. Red Hill was a mighty change, for me.
The school seemed to be perennially short of staff (of which there will be more to say later), so the community organized a number of committees, whose function was to ensure that basic necessities around the school were achieved. Each of these committees offered a report
The Food and Hygiene Committee helped the cooks plan meals for the coming period - although obviously the Cook had a very large say, since he controlled the money that would be spent on provisions. Colin Hart was perhaps an ideal case, since he did not view the activities of the F&H Committee to be an interference in any way, but rather as a help to getting his job done. Members of the committee also helped each day to clear the hall before meals, lay up tables etc. Members of the committee also inspected bathrooms, toilets etc., on a regular basis and cleaned them up, when necessary. We did not appreciate the importance of this work, so the committee was always trying to win new members.
The Social Committee tried to provide extra-curricular activities of various kinds, on and off-site, providing a means for us to begin to learn to interact with members of society at large - including a Scottish Dancing Society and some theatricals. Films were sometimes shown on a small portable screen. Occasionally outings were arranged, usually to Maidstone to visit the Museum, or to attend a concert. The most popular activity (during the winter, at least) was the Contract Bridge session, held every weekend – we played for matchsticks. Morley Gayton was the guiding light in this and taught us the basics of bidding and playing - based on the work of the then master Bridge writer, Ely Culbertson (Later on in life, I had the opportunity to learn slam bidding from a player who had earned World Master points - and was introduced to the work of Goren - which showed me how weak we really were at school, but to a young teenager, it was powerful stuff indeed). A number of Chess tournaments were held and on one occasion a Grandmaster came and played multiple chess - about 30 games, I think. I think he only lost one game, and that was to one of the smallest boys in the school. Other board games were played, but only in a desultory fashion - there were no championships for Ludo, or Monopoly.
The Sports Committee organized football and cricket matches, according to season, supervised (and cleaned) the grass tennis court on the terrace, rolled and helped mow the pitches. Constant appeals for help to clean the grounds.
The Library Committee was an important part of our life. The school had an arrangement with Kent County Library [negotiated through the then county librarian, Miss F.R.E. Davies] that a large walk-in library van would visit the school once or twice a week. Boys were encouraged to select up to 5 or 6 books for personal reading and the Library Committee members prepared large lists of books that the library needed. These would be on loan for 6 months or a year at a time. The Library itself was a large, sunlit room on the southwest corner of the main building. It was equipped with comfortable, deep armchairs, where one could curl up with a book, or with a volume of Encyclopedia Britannica - which I often did - it was the greatest reference work I had ever seen.
Music: Since the arrival of Bernard Stapley at our school (on a part-time basis), one whole classroom had been converted into the Music Room. The resource was limited - a piano in good condition and a few instruments had been found and competition for their use was always increasing. Stapley would hold classes there during the evenings and whatever free time we had would be spent practicing if the weather was bad. Somewhen in that time period, enough interest was shown to put on a limited version of G&S’s Mikado, which I remember to this day. The Music Committee of course had a big role in the logistics for the operetta - obtaining scores, costumes, props etc. Stapley played piano, and managed to round up enough local amateur players to make a glad sound - the strings were in tune!
We mainly listened to the reports of the various committees with boredom, unless there was a major change in the offing. Following these reports (and voting whether to accept them or not - and there were times when the report of a Committee was rejected - the Committee then had two weeks in which to rectify the situation, to do whatever work it had committed to do and to prepare a report for the Community and submit it. If that was found to be unacceptable, then the Committee leadership would have to resign and new elections held. In my time there, this latter step never had to be taken).
The meeting was thrown open to the members of the community, who could raise any subject they wished. A Proposal had to be seconded and then would be opened for a time-limited discussion, at the end of which it would be put to a vote. If the proposition passed, then it would be written into a book of statutes by which the school was run. Even though such rules were in most cases trivial, they were important to the boys at that time. So they were allowed to stand. Shaw of course had an ultimate Veto, but during my time and as far as memory of other older boys reached, had never used it. Sometimes he would speak for, or against a particular proposal, which might influence people strongly, but that was the limit of his apparent involvement. He would still abide by the opinion of the majority. Since we all knew about the Veto, we knew that there were ultimate limits to our freedoms - to govern our own lives and to venture out into the outside world. We felt secure, because we could return to an environment that did not contain unreasoning, arbitrary rules that could neither be fathomed nor got around. In that limited sense, school was actually, in some ways, better than home. Of course, you didn’t get love there, as you would at home, but you were treated as a thinking individual who had rights that could be defended in Court. And you had standing within the community, to some degree proportionate to your contribution to it.
Just as with any other activity, boys could and did absent themselves from class without giving reasons. They would be fined and made to work off their debt - and usually fell into line where classes were concerned within a very few weeks. Nevertheless, there was this strange sense of freedom about the place - you didn’t have to go to classes, you chose to go.x
The names of the forms or classes were strange. The "Upper Fourth"; "Remove" and the "Sixth". The subjects taught were in many respects the same as in other schools, except that if you wanted to undertake a particular project, you could discuss it with the teacher and if he gave you permission, you could absent yourself from class to go do your project. I did some studies in History this way, and found that the reporting back experience was particularly good - I wonder if Morley Gayton didn’t follow what I was doing and ensure that he always had something more to contribute - he always seemed to know more about the subject than I, even when it was something quite esoteric - such as a short review of inaccuracies of the Holinshed Chronicles, or the role of Alexis Comenus IV, or the wars of Count Belisarius (I was addicted to Byzantine history for a while).
Gayton also taught Geography and ensured that we could read maps properly and use a compass (these were truly a great help to me in later years, when I had to navigate for real - off-road in the central deserts of Iran) and delved at great length about the economics of various countries and linked it all to History as well. This gave it meaning, depth and relevance. The majority of his teaching was concerned with the United Kingdom, particularly when it came to preparation for ‘O’ Level examinations. By that time, we had to begin to fall into line and work to the syllabus prescribed.
PD (Powell-Davies) taught English and gave us a fairly solid foundation of literature, plays, poetry and grammar. We did Shakespeare, of course - Macbeth, Hamlet, Midsummer Night’s Dream, Merchant of Venice etc., Dickens, Joseph Conrad, Saroyan, many poets - of whom Yeats, Hopkins. Belloc, Owen, Sassoon, Brooke, Masefield, Behan and Dylan Thomas were but a few. For me, Hopkins and Owen were the revelation - and affected much of my thinking for many years. PD also played KoKo in the Mikado. One year, PD took a small group of older boys down to Biddenden and paid for us at a rather good restaurant. That was my first taste of so-called American Food: Chicken Maryland, followed by some dessert and my first-ever liqueur - Grand Marnier. I suspect that this outing was some sort of attempt to instill into us the most basic social graces - how to sit at table, the array of cutlery and napkin, the conversation - basically learning how to control oneself.
Bob Payne taught art. He was an artist himself and left the school to go and paint for many years and then returned for a while. He didn’t waste words and mainly taught us by doing, rather than by saying. We watched, then imitated, then painted for ourselves. Good teaching. Paintings which met some undefined standard - i.e. Payne liked them or approved of them, I think - would be hung on the walls of the magnificent staircase in the main building, exhibited there for a while - a year or two - and then taken up to London, exhibited and sold to raise funds for the school.
Lawrence Mills took over when Bob Payne left. The difference was almost palpable - what had been a heady experience - an exotic wine - was replaced by something akin to sour yogurt - Mills was probably out of his depth - dogmatic and opinionated without real knowledge. He attempted to formalize the art school, and made us study some art history - notably the French school, from Watteau to the Impressionists, but managed to make it a very dry subject. What was worse, from our point of view, was that he interfered with boys' work, insisting that they do something in a particular way, rather than the way they wanted. Experimentation rapidly died. He sometimes overpainted their paintings with his ideas. It must be said, however, that Mills changed over time and for some students was obviously an ideal teacher, both in and out of the classroom; and there have been other tributes to his understanding and tolerance.
Ivor Holland - Deputy Headmaster. Mathematician, Artist, Psychologist and multilingual. Possibly the cleverest person I have ever had the good fortune to meet. He was short and stout, but not excessively so. He pulled me out of school when I was fifteen and proceeded to give me a personal six-week course in mathematics - from basics - pre-geometry, though trig and into middling calculus - to the point where I could handle fairly complex integration and middling partial differentiation and knew of the existence of Fourier Analysis, LaPlace transforms and Bessel functions, even if I didn’t get to learn for some years what their value and uses were. This was the most explosive period of learning in my life and changed my world-view immensely. During this time, I also watched him drawing a view of the building, using pencil. His hatching was so good one could almost see the colour of the moss on the roof of the main building. Holland later also subjected me to an extensive analysis of what I might be good for, my imagination, reactions to stimuli etc. and presumably wrote a report for the files. I do not know if this was a standard part of his work, or whether he "took me on" as it were.
Otto L Shaw. Principal, Psychologist, Antiquarian. Shaw didn’t teach classes, but did undertake analysis for most of us kids. He was a formidable man - well over six feet in height, heavy-set, but with a infectious, almost boyish sense of humour. After the extension to the school was built, his study was moved to the new wing. From his window he could observe the front of the main building; the door to his study opened onto a corridor, with continuous windows down one side, overlooking the back entrance. It was his habit to open his door and yell "BOY!" and if that didn’t work would walk across to the windows, open one and yell again; whoever heard his call would come - usually it was to get Shaw a cup of tea from the kitchen. This went on for a long time, until someone decided to have a little fun - and when he was next ‘called’, proceeded to bring Shaw a cup of his normal tea - dark, without milk or sugar - but with a small live worm in it. Shaw apparently looked and saw the worm but said nothing - put the tea down on his desk and gravely thanked the boy, who then had to leave the study. A few days later I was having analysis with Shaw, when he called for tea in his inimitable manner (in the meantime, of course the story of the worm in his tea had gone through the school like wildfire). A boy eventually appeared, bearing a cup of tea. Shaw looked in the cup and up at the boy and with a deadpan face and voice, said "No, no: worms, yes, but beetles no." and handed the cup back to the boy to take back to the kitchen and bring another cup.
He could easily have instilled fear in us, but never did - one noticed that the smaller boys were a little more careful when moving around him - just as a cat might be when moving around a human - the human is clumsy by comparison. Shaw could be charming to all people and was. Once, when I was engaged in a history project, Shaw permitted me the run of his personal library, which included the original volumes of Holinshed’s Chronicles, Volumes I and II, of the 1577 edition. He had me wash my hands, inspected them, and then laid out these books on a desk, for me to read, to handle directly, to take notes. I cannot imagine any other man permitting a fifteen-year-old to handle such treasures in such a carefree manner. I wonder what happened to those originals.
The buildings were intimately linked to other problems at the school and notably to the question of short staffing. The main building had been constructed in 1612, as a dower house for the Filmer Family who had then owned the nearby Sutton Place (which was by our time used a Borstal for girls). The real name of the place - to which it has now reverted - is Charlton Court. The land that went with the property was an extensive kitchen garden, at the top end of which were located the Barn and a series of old outbuildings, mainly used to house farm machinery, together with a number of fields around the buildings. There was a long wall connecting Holland’s house and the Barn to the main building (on what was euphemistically called the "Back Drive") and a series of fields above and behind the main building. Below the building - to the South - there was a terrace, used as a tennis court and a number of big trees. Below that, landscape gardeners had cleared the land except for some enormous oaks planted across the lower field in 1612 (there was also a story that the entire landscape, up to the horizon, had been planned by Capability Brown - but whether that was true, I cannot say). This Lower Field housed the cricket pitch and the football field. To the east there was a stream, which was the venue for mud fights and, in high summer, for swimming
The upper fields were given over to strawberry cultivation, which we boys could participate in if we didn’t eat too many strawberries. The proceeds went towards school funds. There were many trees around, some apricots, an apple orchard and many tall pines along the upper driveway - which was no longer used. To handle all the land, the school had just two permanent helpers - one of whom was called Ted, an older man, who had lost a leg while young and walked around with just a wooden peg-leg. He would call on boys to help him whenever he had to load or unload carts, or to crate punnets of strawberries.
The building programme for the school did manage to construct a new wing of classrooms, together with the study for Shaw, mentioned earlier, and a large meeting hall. This did not change the location of the 6th Form however, which took place in a small prefabricated hut at one end of the Terrace. Similarly, the Art classroom was another such hut, located on the Upper Driveway. Staff lived wherever they could - Marion, the school Matron lived in a flat over the front of the barn; Holland, wife and four kids lived in a tiny cottage facing onto the back drive. Later on, a house was built for them, which was over twice the size of the cottage - and still it was really too small. Eileen had a small room off the back staircase, while PD, before he married, lived in an attic of the main building. He had a good record player and occasionally would invite a set of boys to listen to music. Nandi had an even tinier room and study in one of the back wings.
Shaw had his own house in Sutton Valence, as did Morley Gayton. Colin Hart had a cottage on the other side of Sutton Valence and Ted, the handyman, a small terraced cottage near the school.
Looking back, finances must have been the major limitation to the life and progress of the school. Shaw was always looking for any way to increase funds. At one point, the school had to sell most of its wood - the tall pines and those enormous oaks. Fortunately it was decided to leave the roadside Plane trees and the trees on the terrace - all of which had stories to tell; the Big Fir - a test of agility to get onto the tree in the first place and then to climb it to the top. Easier trees, such as the Sycamore and the Copper Beech were great favourites, but the hardest tree of all - the Scots Pine - I never managed to climb at all.
Since there were so few staff, other than the teachers, the boys had to lend a hand - and were paid so to do. Jobs were plentiful, but you had to ‘sign up’ for them a term at a time - peeling potatoes, handling the trash, maintaining the boilers and hauling coke for them, helping the cook, working around the Barn and the strawberry fields. The pay for these tasks was trivial compared to a grown man’s pay, and would be miniscule compared to the sort of pocket money that children seem to get today, but at the time it was seemed more than generous and allowed us to purchase many things that otherwise we would have done without. One year I cleaned shoes for Ivor Holland and family (and got endless cups of coffee as well as a little pay); another year I peeled potatoes with a few other boys. So far as I am able to tell, we were not harmed by undertaking these tasks.
Apart from Bridge and our own brand of Solitaire, reading, painting etc., during periods of bad weather, we tried to get out of school as often as possible. Most of us had bicycles and could go to Sutton Valence - about 2 miles away for little things. As we became more adventurous, we would go down to Headcorn, Biddenden, Bethersden, Ashford, Canterbury and eventually as far away as Rye and Hastings - which was an all-day trip by bike. All in all, for a boarding school, we were remarkably free.
It seemed all of a piece: there was a peculiar continuity about the place. One could be in class, and a boy would come and say to the teacher "Shaw wants him", pointing to some particular boy in the class; and off that boy would go without demur. The teacher would quietly rearrange what he was teaching to accommodate the boy’s absence and catch up with him later. In an unspoken way, there was an emphasis upon the totality of living, rather than on schoolwork. Whilst we were, no doubt, carefully watched, there never seemed to be any overt supervision or control of our activities - other than bedtimes. But, if you wanted to get up in the night and go for a stroll, you could - no one would stop you. While the place was no Utopia, it did have an unmistakable effect upon most of the boys there. Billy came from the East End of London and was in many ways a typical product of such a place. He took a long time to settle down to regular classes - seemed to deride any sense of a formal education. He was violent - resorting to his fists first and thinking about it afterwards; and he possessed an extraordinary range of invective - from common swearwords to quickfire use of Cockney Rhyming Slang. After a while this barrage slackened however - staff, and most especially Shaw, would just make fun of it all and laugh at Billy’s attempts to shock them. The use of foul language eventually was considered by most people there as mindless - an attempt to NOT think about something, and so it slowly died in most boys.
Yes, there were limitations at Red Hill School; facilities were rudimentary in many cases, financial problems were only partially hidden, but there was an ethos - a spirit - to the place, a sense of belonging to something that could be had nowhere else (and of course, within our very limited experiences of other schools, indeed it could not be found elsewhere). There were occasional fights, but that is what they were - very occasional. Most disagreements were either resolved amicably or in the Court. We had all heard of Summerhill School and wondered what that might be like, but did not really believe that Red Hill could be bettered, even if they had girls there.
Otto L. Shaw (died 3rd July 1976). Principal, Psychologist, Magistrate (Maidstone, Kent). Known as "Shaw". Married to Joan; 3 children - Timothy O. DOB 2ndQ/1941, Carole E. DOB 1stQ/1944, Nicholas D. Kevin DOB 3rdQ/1948).
Ivor W. Holland. Deputy Headmaster, Mathematician, Psychologist, Artist, Polyglot Multilingual. Known as "Holland" also as "Baldy". Married to Lily; 4 children [Jane R. (Rin'Chen), Caroline A., John M. (Murray) 1945 - 1974, Cherry].
Thomas Dilwyn Powell-Davies. (Known as "PD") English and English Literature. Later became Headmaster of another school. Single when I knew him; later married to Eileen. Later retired to Ewell, Surrey.
Morley Gayton. History, Geography, Cricket. Known as "Gayton" or as "Morley Gayton", he was a natural teacher and a good cricketer, playing at the boys’ level for the most part. Unflappable, always in good humour.
Mr. Nandi. Mathematics and Science. Later became an Actuary. Single.
Bob Payne. Art. Left and later rejoined the school.
Marion O. Farrell. Known as MOF. School Matron.
Phyllis Mills. School Secretary.
Lawrence Mills. Art. Later married Phyllis.
Eileen Snellgrove. French. Later married PD.
Colin Hart. School Cook. Unflappable. Married, 2 children.
Eric Whelton. French. Had served in the French Foreign Legion. Stayed three months.
Canon Norwood. Comparative Religion. Provided a grounding in the major faiths and philosophies of the world. Wise and unflappable.
Gerald Stapley. Music. Organist. Worked full-time at a school in southeast London and came to Red Hill evenings and weekends. Married with children. Was responsible for much musical activity within the school.
Neill Edwards, 2001