Contact Us 

Contact the site at: (Dave) or (Sheila) 

Visitors Archive 2001 onwards
Visitors 1 -17 Old Site; Visitors 18-21 New Site 
 Visitors 1
Nov 2001- June 2002 
Mar 2003 - Apr 2003 
May 2004 - Oct 2004 
Aug 2008 - Jun 2009 
Visitors 21 (below)
Oct 2015 - Feb 2018 
June 2002 - Sept 2002 
May 2003 - Jul 2003 
Nov 2004 - May 2005 
No dates available 
Oct 2002 - Dec 2002 
Aug 2003 - Oct 2003 
June 2005 - Jan 2006 
Jun 2010 - Dec 2011 
Dec 2002 - Jan 2003 
Nov 2003 - Jan 200
Feb 2006 - Oct 2007 
Apr 2011 - Feb 2013 
Jan 2003 - Feb 2003 
Feb 2004 - Apr 2004 
No dates available 
Apr 2013 - Oct 2015 

Visitors 21
My name is David Clifford Morgan and on my 77th birthday last week I discovered your truly wonderful web site. My father, Clifford Morgan, the son of a local coal miner, joined the school via a County Scholarship in 1925-26 and left in 1929 aged 16 after gaining entry to RAF Engineering College, Halton. His career in the RAF took him to the rank of Flying Officer in Bomber Command. He was killed in 1943 when I was five years old and, sadly, I have no recollection of him, as he was far from home, fighting in the Pacific. You can imagine my delight when I found two photographs and six mentions of him in your very thorough site. To the best of my knowledge he is in the Sport section for the 1920s First Soccer Team, bottom row third from left. He is also in the Form Groups 1925-26 Miss Hanson's forrm, third row down far left (the lad with big ears!). He and a chum won the three-legged race in 1926! Obviously a sporting prodigy.
Finding all this information about the father I never knew has touched me greatly, so many thanks to the gifted team who have put this remarkable web site together.
Thank you again,
David Morgan
29 Oct 2015
Hello David,
How lovely to hear from you! When we enter onto the site the facts and figures about any individual from long ago, we have no idea whether they will give pleasure to any specific descendants such as yourself. However, time and again we have been contacted to say it has all been worth the time and effort involved, as it has struck a chord in many peoples' lives. We are delighted that you are one of these. You must have certainly browsed for a long time to see so much! Thank you for your compliment on the site. We have been going since 2001, and there is still much to do.

Did you see the mention of your father in the Cricket Notes for 1927-28? The comment was on his bowling ability. 
I also have a mention of him in a 1927-28 School Magazine. The Cricket Match report for a game taking place on 7th July 1928 against Barnsley Grammar School 1st XI reads as follows:

"School winning the toss put Barnsley in and dismissed them for 78 (Morgan 4 for 10 and Mart 3 for 11).School lost Williamson (8) at 13, Mart (2) at 19 and Rothera (6) at 20. A collapse occurred now, School being unable to cope with the bowling of Kilner. Wright (3) left stumped at 33 and later at 32 Barker (8) was caught, both off Kilner's bowling. The next four wickets were cheaply gained by him. Clarke (1), Goulding (2), Morgan (16) and Harrison (4) all falling to him. Naylor (1) fell to Pacey and Mellars (0) was not out. School were thus dismissed for 56.

Result: School lost by 22 runs. Barnsley G.S. 78, School 56"

In the itemised critique of the 1st XI players during the whole season of 1927-28….

Morgan - A keen player who has right ideas. Should become a really good all-rounder.

I wonder if you have seen your father's name on the Roll of Honour? You can read all about the lectern which contains the names by clicking History, and then from the yellow box select 'The Lectern and one story from it'. If you should happen to have any information about your father's War Service which you would like included, then please let us know.

Thank you so much for getting in touch,
Kind Regards,
2. Hello Dave, 
You probably don't remember me at HGS but I remember you well at school. I have only just discovered the Grammar school site. I have a few photos and maybe some answers to queries. The Form photos have brought back many happy memories of the lads and lasses I had the pleasure of meeting there. I have seen one or two over the past 49 years but not recently. I can only reiterate what has been said by so many others about the teaching staff and how they made life so enjoyable. They helped form and inspire inquisitive minds to go on to adulthood with confidence. After HGS I joined the Hilmians Rugby Club and have included 3 photographs of some of the teams. There are some other photographs which I will also send. I hope they can be of help to someone. They have many happy memories for me.
Keith Oliver (HGS 1954-59)
8 April 2016
Hi Keith,
Thank you very much for contacting the site. It is great to hear from you. I certainly do remember you from HGS. You were only one year above me at school so I had quite a lot of affinity with your year as a whole. House and School Teams were often comprised of your Year and mine. Great memories. Thanks for the photographs. Our visitors will really enjoy seeing them.
Enjoy the site.
Very Best wishes,
Dave McKenzie
3. Hi Dave,
I was having a quick look at the website and suddenly a name came to me of the cook who was at the school at some time in the 1950's. She was Fiona Towler whose father, Harry Towler, had been a colliery manager and NCB Area Manager and lived at Hodroyd Hall which was between South Hiendley and Shafton. Fiona was actually a trained Cordon Bleu chef and at some point prior to working at HGS she had been chef to the Lillford family who were a wealthy and influential family in South Africa.
I thought this may be of interest and if I find out more I will let you know.
John Robinson (1956 - 61)
4 May 2016

Hi, John. I know it's been some time since your last mail to the site about Fiona Towler, and although Dave acknowledged it, I wanted also to say thank you for it. Our School was linked into a wider scenario than we realised when we were there, wasn't it. Fiona Towler was certainly an interesting person, -just one of the many quality members of the Staff which populated the School. I wonder who appointed her? Would it be the Head, along with the Governors, or maybe the West Riding Education Authority - or perhaps there was a School Meals Department somewhere. I thought those cooks at the School presented us with really good meals, even through the shortages. Do you remember being given a slice of bread when potatoes were unavailable? As we passed along the line of dinner ladies with our plates ready for the puddings, I recall them saying "there's 2 dozen eggs in this custard". Happy Days!

Anyway, it's good to know you are still dipping in to the website and enjoying the read. Thanks again for the input.
Best Wishes,
4. Dear HGS folks,
I stumbled upon your site during some family tree research. What a great community you have, and have had. Jack Rhodes the groundsman is mentioned fondly by some of you in the Forum (1.3), especially for cricket. When I was a little boy in the 50s and early 60s he was my Uncle Jack, married to my Auntie Sadie (nee Mahoney).. As I recall, everyone had only good things to say about 'Jack and Sadie'. They were kind and gentle. They came to stay and visit at our house in Grantham before and after moving to Guernsey. Uncle Jack gave us all a Guernsey 3d bit, which I found exotic with its frilly milled edge and different metal to the English 3d bit. I also remember us always having two aged but real cricket bats in the shed that I'm pretty sure came from Jack; and most likely surplus from HGS. They eventually disintegrated from years of use on the street wicket. Whilst I am from Grantham, my grandparents Timothy and Rose Mahoney lived in Hemsworth from about 1920-1950.
Anyway, there you go. I'll have a drive through Hemsworth and HGS next time I'm back home.
Stephen Mahoney
Melbourne, Australia.
6 May 2016 
Hi Steve,
I'm Sheila from the HGS website, and I just wanted to thank you for your recent mail. We have been longing for news of Mr. Rhodes  (as we knew him), because he was such an important cog in the Sports life of our School. He was a popular chap who seemed to be an enduring feature of our lives. He and Mr. Wycherley gave us all such pleasant memories of the grounds - pitches, flower beds, trees and shrubs were all tended with such care. I'm sure that few schools in Yorkshire, or for that matter in the country, would have had such beautiful grounds as ours. He left behind some treasured memories. Do you have any photos of him which you would be willing to share with us? I think from memory there is only one image of him on the site - not enough for such an important chap. I wonder why he chose Guernsey for his retirement? Having been in the Hemsworth area for so long, it seems a far distant choice - unless he had family there? Did he and Sadie have any children? I believe they lived on Holly Bank. Questions, questions! I'm not wishing to pester you, but you are the only person who is able to fill us in. We are attempting to capture as many memories as we can before they fade away.
Looking forward to hearing from you again,

5. Hi both,

I have just come across the site for the school. I attended from 1963 to 1970, the last 2 years as the High School. The site looks great and I am still exploring further. It brought back a lot of memories especially seeing the photos of a lot of old friends, and teachers. It would be fantastic to be able to get back in touch with many of them.
Dave Burdett (HGS/HHS 1963-70)
16 Sept 2016

Hi David,
How lovely to hear from you - and where have you been for the last 15 years! Dave and I started the site in 2001. At first it was planned just to cover our own years at School (1955-1962), but pretty soon word spread and brothers and sisters from earlier and later years got in touch, and we mushroomed into covering the whole of the existence of the Grammar School - 1921-1967. We try to record in good faith all the people, events and stories, both important and insignificant, before they fade away from memory. A bit like doing a never-ending jig-saw! Anyway, we are so pleased you have discovered us, and hope you join in with your memories too. If you are in touch with any of your School peers, please spread the word about our site - it's for everyone interested in the School, and all the content is positive, as were our own School Days. Again - great to hear from you, and looking forward to your reply.

Hi again Sheila,
Just a few recollections on my time at HGS. For the record I was in Romans in 1963, followed by 2A, 3A, 4 Celts and Year 5. Afterwards it was Lower 6th, Upper 6th, leaving in 1970. I played a bit of rugby for the school in the Second, Third and Fourth Years and was in the Third XV in year 5. If I remember correctly we had all the fixtures cancelled for the second part of the season due to "rough play". When I started first year boys were nicknamed "sprogs" and were subject to certain levels of abuse by the older boys.
In the winter of 1963 there was a heavy snowfall at one point. The 1st XV rugby team changed into their kit and took on the rest of the school in a snowball battle. Woe betide anyone who was caught as part of this. They had snow packed down inside their trousers. I had a few pals who spent the afternoon in class slowly dripping and steaming as the snow melted The Ice Cream Shop used to be open in the last term each year. It was usually run by 4th year pupils. However the shop was closed in our 4th year as most of the ice creams were eaten but not paid for. I have a great fondness for Miss Smith who took us for French in our 5th Year. It is solely thanks to her that I managed to pass my O level French. I'm sure many will remember "Taff" Davies (French) and "Johnny" Swinbank (Latin) who taught songs in the respective languages, and the sounds of raised voices singing various songs echoing around the corridors At the end of Year 5 there was a school camp in Keswick in the Lake District. Not only a good holiday, it provided a great benefit to get to know the teachers on a more personal and friendly basis not only in the pubs but also in the camp, on walks, canoeing etc. We were on a campsite at the junction of 2 large streams leading in to Derwentwater. I distinctly remember having to peel 2 sacks of spuds for dinner one evening. There was great sadness in many pupils and staffs hearts when we sang the school song at the last assembly in 1968, but also great amusement when the Head walked out. This is evident from a lot of the comments on the site. Whilst the new school benefited from many more additional facilities etc., much of the atmosphere and character disappeared over the following couple of years after 1968. I hope that the new school has been able to generate its own character.
Dave Burdett
21 Sep 2016

Hi Dave,
Many thanks for your recollections - so valuable to us! After we left in 1962 our connections with School (well, mine, anyway) were few. I set off one evening with another pal who had come to Manchester from HGS, and our aim was an Old Hilmian reunion in Pontefract. My car was ancient, the fog on the moors became really thick, and we turned back. Apart from my 2004 visits which are reported on the site, that's the sum of my HGS knowledge beyond our leaving date in 1962.
Thanks for your Form names and dates. I now have 2 names in my list for your year Celts 4 - yours and Valerie Mitchell's who won the Form Prize. Can you recall who was your Form teacher? Any other names from Celts 4 which you can be definite about would be welcome, as I hesitate to take the list wholesale from the previous year's 3A. Also, from somewhere I don't recall, I have had a suggestion that Gorton's name might be Bruce. Does this ring a bell with you?
Finally, could I ask you to look at the Sports section and in the Sports Days 1960's, scroll down to the 1967 presentation photo? Marrion Pearson is shaking hands with Dianne Sell across Mrs Hamilton. There are lots of missing names there which you may know, and be able to tell us. Of course, if you happen to pass any of the other photos in that area and can provide names for the numbers, that would be marvellous.
I know I must appear to be quizzing you ad infinitum, but actually, yes, I am! Your help is valued as we try to make the record of that great School. I heard last week that Grammar Schools are coming back. Fancy that!

 6. Dear Sheila,
I had a happy hour reading the latest from many people who were with me at H.G.S. I saw a piece there from Peter Wall and remembered how powerful his voice was keeping the various choirs going with Miss Carter in charge. As I remember his brother Alex also sang and I have a memory of him winning a Music scholarship to Cambridge, which amazed us in the pit villages. I can't remember whether it was taken up. Perhaps Peter will read this and tell all. As you wrote, our generation were so lucky to have such opportunities with such a wide range of extra curricular activities. Does anyone remember the trip to Stratford-on-Avon. The year I went we were living in caravans and took our food with us. Great fun. I think that was 1953. I also liked the piece about Mr Johnstone (Jock). In the 6th he inspired us to read more widely including  novels completely new to a miner's daughter from Fitzwilliam. The Bible reading when I was first made a prefect was also very daunting and I learnt it by heart in the end so as to read it perfectly.
Juliet Parker 
22 Feb 2018

Dear Juliet, Thank you so much for your mail, and I must apologise for my tardy reply. I have recently been suffering from that awful 'flu, which knocked me out completely, but am now slowly 'on the mend'. I'm so glad you are still occasionally dipping into the HGS website, and that it is evoking those memories of long ago. When your mail appears on the site, I'm sure that the questions you pose about Peter Wall's scholarship and The Stratford trip will receive some responses. Although when we were pupils at the School we seemed to know every member of Staff by name, there were still some occasions when one could progress through the years and still miss having one or more of those teachers for a lesson. Mr. Johnstone was one such teacher as far as I was concerned, and it looks as though I missed out on an inspirational man, as you are not the only person to mention him with praise. I can see that you were constantly in a choir throughout your School days. Not only that, but it looks as though during the years you were singing, the School experienced its 'Golden Years' musically.

Kind regards,
7. Dear Sheila,
So pleased to see that the Old Hilmian/HGS web site is still being maintained by the dedication of you and your colleague. Even but a few minutes spent in the site must give you such a buzz as you see the rapturous musings of the old HGS associated visitors. Much pleasure is still clearly given even to those who have only an association with an ex-HGS pupil. I suppose it is inevitable that the site will one day run out of living contributors but until that day may you thrive! Thank you to you and your associate.
Very Best Wishes,
Geoff Graham
20 July 2018
Dear Geoff,
Thank you so much for your kind words about the website. It's amazing to think we have been doing it since 2001! I suppose it is a finite activity, but many of those who get in touch are the sons and daughters of Hilmians, so as long as Dave and I keep enthusiastic and healthy, its existence is guaranteed for a good few years yet.