The Library 

The two photographs below were taken about 1940.  At that time there were two fireplaces in the Library. Above one was a picture of Mr Jenkinson (the first Headmaster) and above the other was a picture of Miss Griffiths (the first Senior Mistress). If this information is not correct, please let us know. 

Governors’ Meeting November 1921

A new participant was listed at the November meeting of the Governors, the newly-appointed Head Master, Mr. A.G. Jenkinson M.A., who would no doubt have exerted his influence over the appointment of Miss M.A. Griffiths B.A. as Senior Mistress at that meeting. It would seem no coincidence that Miss Griffiths came from St. Austell, Cornwall, which is also mentioned on the CV of Mr. Jenkinson. 

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 About the Library

 

Situated above the entrance to the School via the steps where our  many School photos were taken, the library centred itself over the Head's study, and the office where Miss Blake worked. The door into the library was to the left of the Homework Pigeonholes; opposite Miss Smith's office, and the male and female  Staffroom doors. According to Terry McCroakam, the library was converted to a Staff Room when the school became Comprehensive. It must have been an interesting change to a mixed-sex facility for those long-serving members of Staff who had only ever occupied the male or the female Staffrooms. I wonder how their behaviour changed? Anyway, I never saw this, so my memories are of a squeaky wooden floor, several large wooden tables, bench seats within the windows with shutters, and an overwhelming sense of cosiness and pleasant sunlight. We had 'Library Periods' during our Upper School days, when given homework could be researched and completed. This was the time when one could meet friends from the other forms who didn't necessarily take the same subjects. There were usually appeals for "Quiet!" until we all settled down, and the continuation of this rested on the control of the teacher who sat at the desk to the right of the door against the far wall. It was a novelty to sit facing, and sideways-on to other pupils, as in normal classroom lessons the desks were arranged in rows facing the teacher at the front - except, that is, in the smaller groups of the Sixth Forms.  Each pupil had a library ticket (-or maybe more) and when one wished to borrow a book, there was an after-school period of time when the Library Prefects were on hand to lodge the ticket from the book into your named card/ticket, and you were given a specified length of time for the loan. The Library Prefects, usually fifth-formers, also catalogued new books, and kept an eye on repairs, stocktaking and overdue loans, and prepared an annual report for publication in the School Magazine. The main drawback to concentration in the library was the pleasant view from the four windows. A selection of mature trees and colourful shrubs set in the land which sloped away down to the distant road, guaranteed interest and movement whatever the season, but as the front of the school was away from playgrounds and classrooms, it was the tranquillity and peacefulness which encouraged reverie.Let's hope the Staff enjoyed it too, while they could! 

Sheila Kelsall (HGS 1955-62)
 
  
Judging by these few Library reports, some of the Library Prefects seemed to become both proprietorial and censorial during their terms of office! They remind us of the existence of the County Library section, and I remember that there were separate borrowing procedures for the County Library books.I recall nipping down into the library in the village looking for A-Level reference books when an essay had been given for homework, and those with a free period straight afterwards had hot-footed it to the library and cleared the shelves. Never any luck there, though, as our requirements were too specific. Some of the satchel-stretching tomes with authors such as 'Peake' (RK students will know), and 'Gregg' and 'Thompson' (History) resulted in a lop-sided gait only recognised by other Sixth-Form sufferers who also staggered home burdened by these reference books. When the sac. was 'dumped', the 'carrying' shoulder would 'float' higher than the other, and the person would lean slightly to one side to compensate for the imaginary load!  Did many of the boys graduate to brief cases when they became Sixth-formers?
Sheila Kelsall

Thoughts in the Library Study Area, late on a Friday Afternoon 

From the School Magazine (Insight) 1968
 
 

 

 Why is Friday considered by everybody to be a time for being fed-up, a time for sitting back and doing nothing, a time for gently nodding off in Latin lessons and waiting for the sweet dulcet tones of the four o'clock bell? Let us, on this Friday afternoon, probe this drastic social phenomenon which has hurled itself before us. As you well know, Friday is the culmination of a busy, fruitful and hectic week in which we have played our part in fostering English school life. We feel, as any self-respecting English workman should feel, that the week ends at approximately 12-20 p.m. on a Friday afternoon; the remainder of the day is spent waiting for the bell, dreaming of the weekend, waiting for the bell and -- well -- waiting for that damned bell!

Now, my readers, one and all, as I see it, there is much to be learned about our society from human endeavour on a Friday afternoon. We are, it is plain to see, quite incapable of pouring out our energies to the last. We have always to stumble at the last hurdle, when the winning post is just in sight. Now, dearly beloved, how much better a sight that last winning post would be if we had jumped that last hurdle without faltering, don't you agree? 
 
Need I say more? I put it to you! Unaccustomed as I am to public writing, I ask you, should Friday afternoons be periods of dexterity, thriftiness, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera, or should they be abolished altogether? Should 12-21 p.m. on a Friday be officially proclaimed Saturday? Children, I fear I am being flippant, frivolous even, on this hot, stuffy Friday afternoon. Even now verily, as I am writing my proclamation for public circulation, I am surrounded by talkers, babblers and snorers in this beautiful library study area so generously and thoughtfully given to us. 
 
I have spoken; I am having a snooze before being faced with the long, LONG straight to the winning post - the Geography lesson!!
Bill Dyson L6A

 
I seem to remember that Staff Meetings were held in the Library. Perhaps Terry McCroakam can help us here.
Dave McKenzie
 
Dave, 
You were correct in thinking Staff meetings were held in the Library. There was always a small wager on who would be first to fall asleep, Alf Swinbank, Ernie Atack, or Arnie Davies. Doing Library duty was good for staff, it was like a non-teaching period but you could get on with some marking without having to cover for an absent colleague.
Terry McCroakam