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  • Wendy Percival

Back to school

Back to School has been on everyone’s mind this week, and I must admit to still being a little shell-shocked from solving the mystery school conundrum about my grandmother, which I posted about a couple of weeks ago.


For those who don’t know the story, I’d set about tracking down the school where my grandmother, Winifred Griffiths, was allegedly sent, to “settle her down” My grandmother, it seemed, was considered too "lively"!


With very little information to go on, I found a possible candidate for the school called, St Elizabeth’s, Bullingham, Near Hereford and to cut a long story short (for more details, see On the Trail of a Mystery School), I was advised to contact Herefordshire Archives as they held copies of the logbooks.


Much to my amazement and delight, they replied to say they’d found her name on the school’s admission list. She’d arrived in September 1916, aged 14, and left in July the following year. As to what happened to her next, you’ll have to wait until another time!


Meanwhile, continuing the school theme, I’ve been browsing through the family archives for school-related photographs. The photo below is of my grandfather, Ernest George Shelley, taken around 1908 – he’s 5th from the left on the 3rd row.



My dad thought the school to be Tettenhall Wood but I only have tracked down school records for my granddad’s admission to St Mark’s Infant School in 1902. He left St Mark's Infants a year later when he moved out of the district, aged 6. So I've a gap to investigate – which primary school did he attend next and which is the senior school in the photograph?


It's possible it's what is now Tettenhall College, situated in Wood Road, Tettenhall. In a photograph on their website, in the slide-show header, the pupils are dressed in a similar uniform with those very distinctive collars. But further research is necessary, as families who sent their sons to the school don't quite fit the profile of my great-grandparents!


So while I go off to investigate, I’ll leave you with one of our favourite school photos – that of my husband’s mum, Eunice Irene Saunders, taken around 1920 at (we believe) Queen’s Manor Primary School, Fulham. She’s the little girl on the front row with the white shoes. Spot the school cat!





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