A place to discuss Keighley Boys' Grammar School.
Why not encourage the people on Friends Reunited to visit this site more frequently. Though I have noticed in the last few weeks increased activity on this forum, so some may be doing so. It also begs the question whether Keighley Girls Grammar School have also been emulating the success of this site, and have their own website.
A subtantial part (most?) of the old premises still exists. The fire mainly took out the mechanics hall at the side and old tech college buildings on the Cavendish Street side. The old assembly hall is still there. Its a students common room now. How on earth we got a full school in there I don't know. I haven't wandered further afield. I'll have to go looking for the labs, art room etc.
Watch this space next week.......
I attended a night school class in the old building a few years ago and parked in the playground.The class was held in a room to the left of the staircase off the Front Entrance.It didn't occur to me at the time ,but having read the recollections posted, it would be interesting now to have a wander round.Assuming security's not too tight!
Security's almost non-existent in my experience, Brian. I had a good old wander round the place, unchallenged, a year or two ago (more recently than 9/11 anyway!) A few classes were in session at the time. Very nostalgic - so little has changed over the ensuing 40 years. Anyway I had some lame excuse half- prepared about seeking to enroll. As if!
My recommendation to anyone in the area with half an hour to spare would be "Give it a go".
Probably be arrested for sneaking around memory lane in that building. Anyway those Pakistani lads that hang about that building now would probably think us weirdos looking for ghosts of young chaps in green striped blazers and eccentric masters in black gowns.
Craig, they're not Pakistani lads. They're Keighley lad, like us.
Can you prove that Alan. I mean, if you were to ask them individually are you a Keighley lad first or a Pakistani lad first, I wonder what the answer would be. I take it the Bradford riots two years ago were about division and disharmony rather co-existence and multiculturism. I honestly believe that had the mill owners and the British government invited Eastern Europeans, Russians or Latin Americans to the Bradford and Keighley wool mills, you would NOT have the social schisms you see today. Religion and culture lie at the core of today's social problems. Mind you I live in the Isle of Man, so what do I know.
If the mill owners had invested in modern machinery, rather than cheap third world labour, we may still have had a textile industry. Have a pint for me in The Shore at Laxey, Jonathan!
I've worked with communities whose origins were in South Asia for thirty years, and for the past five years or so have also worked with more recently arrived groups from Eastern Europe, so I'm in a fair position to comment on Jonathan Cox's "If ....".
Recent eastern european migrants have had similar experiences to those experienced by south asian migrants in the past [difficulties finding accommodation and aggression including physical attacks, fire-bombongs and, occasionally, murder]. The factors contributing to it are varied, including wariness of the unfamiliar in both migrant and 'host' groups. And there are always unsavoury individuals in both migrant and host groups who have a disproportionate effect on perceptions.
If you look at the areas where there is greatest friction between communities, there is one factor they have in common - poverty and lack of hope for the future.
For many that's Keighley to a T.
Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) firstname.lastname@example.org
I lived in Bradford Street from 1941 to 1964. In the years after the war - the first I really remember - there were a few "DP"s (displaced persons)settling in the area. The locals decided they were Poles - although most were Ukrainian.They quietly assumed the life of a Keighley workman without engaging the local community socially. There followed the "Indians" (in fact, Pakistanis)at a time when my mother was a textile operative and I worked in the mills in school hols - so I saw them in the neighbourhood and at work. They were dedicated to working to the maximum and making as much income as they could. Whilst the "DP"s were able to associate with churches in the town and establish their own social clubs, the Pakistanis had no social focus until the first mosques were established. As I see the dilemma of the immigrant, it is this - they know what they have left behind and why; they know what they want from the British economy - but there is little of attraction in British (even Keighley) social life - that appeals to them. And that is rapidly becoming the case with a minority of the native population who are disgusted at the lack of courtesy, politeness and common concern for their fellow men that is exhibited by the thrusting self-centredness our the many in our society . So is it any wonder that when groups of native inhabitants of the UK want to lead a separate life from the common herd that our immigrant fellow citizens feel the same.
Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) email@example.com
I am grateful for the answers to my polemical question about recent immmigration to Keighley and many parts of the North. Though I would ask a further question. Surely it would be much better for Islamic emigrants to emigrate to rich islamic nations if they are seeking a better life. If I was a Muslim I would be much more inclined to emigrate to Dubai or Bahrain rather than grim Keighley. It makes me wonder how Pakistani immigrants describe Keighley to their compatriots back home. Perhaps, in more glowing terms than we realise. But as I said, I live in the Isle of Man so what the hell do I know. Okells of Douglas is a good pint by the way. It's brewed by Mick Cowbourne a former KBGS lad.
Not history at all! I was there only today, organising a cabling survey as part of my IT work. I was in the small back room of the biology lab and, I think, the Latin room on the 6th form corridor. I looked in Basher Braithwaite's maths room on the way out. Next time I go I'll do a proper snoop round. The big stained glass window honouring Our Founders is still there, with only a few cracks. The whole place has been taken over by a bunch of latter day educators specialising in degrees in infant care and hairdressing.
Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) firstname.lastname@example.org
George - that explains it! When you pass a hairdresser's and see folk with towels round their heads, they're not really towels at all. They're nappies! And the hairdresser's got a Keighley Tech degree in infant care and hairdressing....
Right - that does it. I'll have to tell my brother in law, Mike Boothroyd, who is Deputy Principal of Keighley Tech College!
Is that the 'George Speller' of 'Moldywarp' fame?
Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) email@example.com
Current location (optional) www.maverickeurope.com
Is that the 'George Speller' that was a TV cameraman and used to wear cravats and sport a beard? And used to drink in the Ferrands Arms.
Is it P.G.Speller (who liked to be known as George), who was a 6th form contemporary of ours and whose father was a local clergy man?
Is he, in fact, all of the people recalled so far?
George Speller, the writer of heavily ironic letters to the Keighley News?
Is that the same George Speller who once had a share in a successful whole food shop called 'Fodder'. We should be told.
Or the George Speller who used to play Sweet Georgia Brown on the guitar at St Mark's Youth Club at Utley in 1964??????
His Dad was Vicar of St Johns, Ingrow
There appears to be a danger of this site developing some intelligent debate.
If anyone would like to have a perfectly legal look around the old place, as opposed to a crafty snoop, I'll be happy to arrange that for them.
Some of you may be aware that there are plans afoot for Keighley College (not Keighley Tech College) to re-locate to a new site (when I've raised the £23.5million required). The architects have been asked to consider incorporating the benefactors windows into the design of the new building.
I can also give you an informed run down on the rather comprehensive range of vocational training and education opportunities available at the college
Mike Boothroyd - Vice Principal
Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) firstname.lastname@example.org
What would be good (if a Vice Principal's salary stretches to a digital camera....??) would be for someone (a Vice-Principal perhaps?) to take some views of key parts of the old building and post them as a virtual tour on this site...that way Trevor Pickles wouldn't have to fly in from Oz to take a nostalgic trip round the old corridors, basement, lavvies, bike sheds and stairways. Just an idea...
I certainly appreciate your thoughts Allan and yes, some images would be great - but I'm sure there'd be nothing like the actual experience of again negotiating those, once, intimidating places.
Maybe next year I can make the trip - it's an African Safari this year!
Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) email@example.com
Current location (optional) studiofour.com.au
With reference to Jonah's recent posting:
I have a digital camera and, now that I am semi-retired, a little time available.
I would be happy to take up Mike's offer of a look round the old building and, as an expression of thanks, take photos to post on the website.
If that's OK please let me know. [firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sorry I don't have the odd 23 million to spare though.
A virtual wander round the old school…..
I go to night school classes at the College and have taken the opportunity to have a wander round. I haven’t been in any of the rooms but have peered through glass panels… Most of the rooms look the same (except for a lick of paint) but have different functions.
Starting from the Lord street entrance (now only an emergency exit). Past the pupils’ steps up, a short distance on the left are a few steps up to the gym. I seem to remember that the changing room was a wood tunnel to the left of the gym as you look at the windows. This has gone and the changing rooms are now on the right. Otherwise the gym looks much as I remember it.
Where were the metalwork/woodwork rooms – were they past the gym? there is no access to the rooms beyond the gym from outside the gym.
Past the steps up to the gym are the steps down to The Tunnel. Horrifying to think that you got the whole school through there 3 times a day. The access door was locked but you can see the door on the left which used to lead to the changing room. I don’t know whether there is access to the yard now. There appears to be an electric sub station or some such on top of what was the entrance. Also from the bottom of the stairs you can access a corridor which runs under the gym parallel to Lord Street.
Did the corridor to the right and 3 rooms to the right of the main corridor on the ground floor belong to the Tech. That area doesn’t strike a bell with me.
At the end of the main corridor is the entrance from North Street. The fine sweeping front stairs are now boxed with fire doors at each level.
Going back to the Lord Street Stairs (LSS) and mount to the first level. On you right is the corridor with 2 classrooms then the longer art room. Beyond that there is another 2 rooms.
Back to the stairs and forwards (west?) towards Joe’s office. On the right are 4 rooms. Music room and what were the other 2 – library?) At the North Street end, as has been said before, Joes office is now a gent’s toilet (snigger)
Back to the back stairs. Halfway up the next flight above the gym is the assembly hall. It was a masterpiece of precision (Pavlovian?) timing to get us all in and out of that confined space without deaths. I paced it out – 12 paces deep by 17 paces wide. Through the assembly hall is the cardboard corridor. Probably 3 rooms on either side. They are now not used as teaching rooms. Halfway along on the left is the new bridge spanning Lord street and giving access to the newer Tech building. There are no traces of the humps in the floor where the floorboards had warped with water damage in the fire.
Mount the LSS once more up to the top floor. On the right is a short corridor with two classrooms. The corridor ends at what was the junior chemistry lab. The senior lab was beyond and only accessible through the prep room which divided the two.
On the other side of the LSS is a short staircase up to (D?) corridor. On the left there was the biology lab and 3 other rooms. On the right are 4 classrooms.
From the top of the LSS looking west is the wide corridor with the senior physics lab followed by the junior physics lab. There are another two rooms to the right.