KBGS Old Boys' Forum

A place to discuss Keighley Boys' Grammar School. 

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KBGS Old Boys' Forum
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War years

Any old boys remember the later war years, with the lower corrider full of timber shoring to form an air raid shelter ? More hits from Frizzy than any bombs !I can remeber Peter Bradley, family were Butchers in Silsden, Joe Dunn whos Dad was a Joiner in Silsden and a boy Gosling whos Dad had a Grocers shop somewhere near the old swimming pools.
I remember there were always about 29 or 30 in our form, I was always 29th or 30th, my only claim to fame apart from swimming

Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) 43 to 47

Current location (optional) now West Wales

Re: War years

I don't remember the later War years at KBGS - I started September 1945, just after VJ day, but I do remember Peter Bradley. He obviously went into the family business because he was working as a slaughterman in Skipton Abattoir between 1951 and 1955. Haven't heard his name menioned since then. Ye gads! It's over 50 years ago! I'm not old enough to be as old as I am!

Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) 45 - 50

Current location (optional) Norfolk

Re: War years

Re Peter Bradley,
He has a Butchers shop at the bottom of Bradley Road in Silsden. I was talking to him about twelve months ago. He looks no different now to how he looked when he used to visit Brian Allen just after they both left KBGS. To the best of my knowledge he is still in situe.

Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) 49 - 54

Current location (optional) Bingley

Re: War years

Still alive and kicking.

See Peter every Friday. Excellent meat and well-worthwhile a visit.

He never seems to age.

Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) 59 - 66

Current location (optional) Embsay

Re: War years

Seen your note Dave, please pass on my regards to Peter. We may be up in Yorkshire next spring and will try to sample the meat.

Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) wartime

Current location (optional) Steeton, now West Wales

Re: War years

Will do John,

I mentioned it to him this morning and said that I would print-off the page and drop it off on Sunday.

He was trying to think who had posted the message but I'd forgotten myself.

Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) 59 - 66

Current location (optional) Embsay

Re: War years

My brother Peter was at school 1941-1946 and as you can see I was there shortly after. Yes I remember the sand bags around all the windows on the ground floor of the school and of all the public buildins. Also the barracks behind Days Cafe opposite. Troop trains through the station, all the goods delivered by rail and then ditributed round town by horse and rulley, all railway owned with the stables at the back of Cavendish St.Flew over the town in 1944 in an Avro Anson on a test flight from Yeadon , now Leeds Airport. Remember the night they bombed Bradford, spent it in an airraid shelter. Tanks and bren gun carriers tearing about and even the L.D.V--local defence force, known as "Look, Duck and Vanish", later the Home Guard.
Good to see another war time old boy contributing , we are a bit thin on the ground.

Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) 1943-1946

Current location (optional) Tasmania

Re: War years

Not just thin on the ground Mike but thin on top, too.
I came to KBGS 1n 1944, so late in the War really.
My memories, of school particularly, was Prut tearing up old exam papers for your weekly test, because of the paper shortage. You were given a piece of paper torn from one already written on and had to answer your questions on that. Questions like ' Explain how Richard II's character contributed to his downfall.' are not easily answered with one or even two words.
I also remember having my feet, height and weight measured to try to get 10 extra clothing points for my mum. My feet and height were 'above average' and earned points but I was built like a skinned rabbit so missed out on weight. You could only get 20 points anyway so it didn't matter.
Nothing to do with the war really but one thing I remember vividly is going down on to the bottom corridor for free milk ( pre-Thatcher then) and it would be freezing down there in winter and the milk would be frozen in the bottle. With all the water frozen out the remaining 'milk' was deliciously creamy. When it was cold down there, there were always some sixth form physics people testing for the 'dew point' and if I am not mistaken Tom Punt was one of them. Arthur Seeley

Re: War years

Mike - my father was in the fire service throughout the war (night) as well as making tank components at the Co-operative Ironworks during the day. He had many stories to tell including ones about the bombing of Bradford. The whole organisation was a bit Heath Robinson-ish. They travelled to fires in the back of old lorries, with no lights and no street lighting. Often ended up in ditches etc. On one call out across the moors my father stood up to offer a light (cigarette) to another fireman just as the lorry hit the bottom of a dip and up a steep hill. They careered out of the back of the lorry and were left in the middle of the moors in the pitch dark and the rain. Took hours to walk back to Keighley getting back after the rest of the crew......and to think that I used to complain so much about Gilbert's cross country tortures.

Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) 58-65

Current location (optional) Leeds

Re: War years

I do of course remember the war years since my days at KBGS were 1940-48. The shelters underneath the playground were used one or twice after air raid warnings but, more usually, for 'air raid practice' complete with gas mask in a cardboard box.The nearest HE bombs got to Keighley was , I think, Leeds though the odd incendiary was found and Bradford was on the edge of the bombing once or twice. My father, too old for service in WW2 though he had served in WW1, was a 'fire warden' complete with stirrup pump.

I do not remember any significant shortages except of meat - probably for the better - and of course at Christmas when turkeys were unobtainable (and I guess not a popular Christmas bird anyway in those days).I remember my father once turning up with a goose which had been obtained, I am sure, by some nefarious means.

One consequence of the war was the shortage of younger male teachers and the emergence of some powerful women e.g. Frizzy' or 'Fanny' Berrington, and May Whitehead. I can't remember any women science teachers.

Current location (optional) Epsom

Re: War years

Just had a quick run through the list and saw this again. I wonder if there are any of the contributors today who were at the celebrations for V.E. day in May 1945 in the Town Hall Square. This was the first time we had seen the street lights and floodlights on for 5 yrs and the square was packed with dancing couples to the strains of Bing Crosby singing "Don't Fence Me In" and the Andrew Sisters with the "Three Cabilleros" [ not sure how that is spelt] It was Quite a night. Did any of you go to the party ?

Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) 43-46

Current location (optional) Sassafras , Tasmania

Re: War years

For what they are worth,here a few of my wartime memories of Keighley,in random order;-
--gas masks in little square cardboard which we had to carry to school,but not ,if I remember rightly, for the "duration"
--no cars ,so we played touch rugby in the street; imagine that today.
--going to Utley to play housematches; we changed at school and went across to Day's Cafe and travelled on public bus in which the seats were rearranged round the sides like a cattle wagon.
--The Cameronian Regt. stationed across from the Baths in Highfield Lane
--lentil soup for 1d each morning ,on the 4th floor as I remember.
--many tanks parked in a slum clearance area at the bottom of West Lane in the early days of the war, and tank exercises on Baildon Moor
--playing tennis in Devonshire Park with bald tennis balls, (with Michael Fox and Colin Paver)
--cricket with cork balls which had lost all their paint
--queues at Podmore'' and other fish and chip shops (maybe in short supply but were not rationed)
--huge snow drifts (6 to 10 ft high) in the streets in 40/41, and snow still in the fields up on the hills in June
--sledging in a field nr. Cliffe castle and on Highfield rec, (I still have three sledges last used in the field behind Gt. Missenden church 20 yrs ago)
--trains full of uniformed servicemen
--O. B,s in the services giving pep talks at school,in particular P.O.Frank Ormoroyd D.F.M
--all the County and Test cricketers who were playing in the Bradford League,and who we were lucky to watch down Lawkholme Lane. But for the war we would probably never have seen them.
--Mike, it is "caballeros", and I should know!

Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) 41/46

Current location (optional) IOM