Stand Grammar School

Church Lane, Whitefield, Manchester
Demolished 2001 AD

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Contributions from Old Standians

This term's Star letters...

Christ. The bloody school's gone.

Is PBH still alive? Did John Moss smoke and drink himself into an early meeting with Van Gogh? Dave Crook, where are you? Do any of 2C - or was it 3G - remember Mrs Bunting inviting us to masturbate the litmus paper? David End - sorry about the Mini wheel, mate.

Martyn, great site: I need a weekend just to read it and dig up all my stories from the brain I wasn't born with.

I'll be back.

Iain Macauley

Hello Martyn,

Never knew you as I attended from '51 - '56 but your site is excellent and though I have visited many times this is the first time I have contributed.

Geoff (Sam) Wilde and I were great pals and, I have to admit, the wags of our year and we were forevever in trouble. We once walked round the first floor rail in opposite directions and managed to pass each other! I used to get caught far more often than Sam but he did do my detention for me on one occasion.

I remember once that we had not done our maths homework and changed our local medical appointment time and date to coincide with maths class. When we turned up at the local clinic it was ante-natal day and the school was informed. I forget the punishment but maybe Sam will remember.

Another incident where someone entered the space between the roof and glass ceiling and wrote in the dust, f.... off. During assembly the Head (I think), got to the passage, "we lift our eyes unto the Lord" looked up and virtually exploded. I think the caretaker may have got detention for that one!

I remember most of the masters with respect, with one or two exceptions, one of whose name constantly appears in the black list. I was caned twice by Sammy Medlar, because I deserved it, and once by Joe Cotterill, when I did'nt. He enjoyed it.

I joined the Army at 17 and served for 27 years, spent the next 10 in Cambridge and the last six running a company in the West End where I intend to remain until I retire in 3 years time.

Where are you Sam, David Banks, David Sloane, Round, Frodsham and Little?

Thank you SGS.



What a trip down memory lane your site is. I was at Stand from 1971 - 1976. I still live in Prestwich and frequent the Parkside Hotel on the odd occasion. Went to primary school with Wayne Jackson (now living Preston area I think), Nigel Warburton (best remembered for trying to speak French with the broadest Batley accent I've every heard - hence his nickname Vooey for his Voos'et Nargil ecky thump), Dave Donald who I haven't seen for many years, William McVicker who's name crops up time to time on Classic Fm (must have found fame as on organist at last), Dave Crook ( who's Black Pudding perfectly interrupted the beak with his "is violence justified" speech, Renee Farrington, Bob Hargreaves, Carl Dykes (still the only Bury supporter I have ever met) I remember Carl being asked to use his imagination and describe in metal work a 12 inch metal ruler without direct reference to its name. He scratched his head for what seemed an eternity and said "its a ruler sir!"… "Spud Hudson", Mark "mathy" Matthews?

Does anybody else remember...

Making a folding picnic table in Woodwork which took for ever to complete (mine still has plants on it
in my mothers porch!)
Anne Marshalls legs
Towies bad breath (caffeine addict I think)
Willy Birch getting embarrassed and polishing the desk top every time he had to talk about sexual
The model train set which was set up in room 17 for school fetes
Being taught English by a Pakistani teacher who we couldn't understand
Cross Country in Philips park passing the famous "smelly farm"
The day they filmed for a TV series at the school (did anybody actually see the program go out?)
Getting your football back from the railway lines

The list is endless. My memories generally are good. If Character building was the aim it certainly worked for me. If the aim was team spirit and "hey lads hey" I wouldn't have got that from anywhere else, then or now! Yes, some of the staff should have probably have been shot at birth but many of them where genuine enough. I seem to remember laughing a lot, so it cant have been bad.

Thanks again for the site Martyn. I called at the school for the first time in over 30 years, in 2001 just before demolition started. I asked a young girl on security patrol if I could have a look around. She took me about the school and the memories flooded back. Of course, it looked much bigger 30 years ago. The young girl seemed to know as much about the school as I did which surprised me. When I asked her why this was she said she had shown so many ex-pupils around since demolition was announced she felt she had almost attended the school herself.  I think that says it all!

Best of luck to you all and cheers

Dave Clynes (1971 - 1976), and brother
Ian Clynes     (1973 - 1978)

Stumbled on your site by accident after looking for Salford Playhouse Theatre via Google!  I went to Stand from 68-70 (?) before my parents were summoned by Dr Barnes who explained to Mr + Mrs McCadden that their son, David, 'might be more appropriately utilised at the local Secondary School'. (In other words they sent their problem boy to Albert Road – and boy, was I ever a problem boy!) Rarely an assembly went by without the good Doctor stating that he 'would see the following boys in his office after assembly. McCadden...'.

Most evocative memories were those dreadful cross-country runs (At which a boy called Travis was so good, whilst me, Narey and Thompson would cheat!), yes Hargreaves and Percy - complete with a chalked 'X' which left an imprint on your slate grey trousers, and those dreadful hut things which masqueraded as classrooms. There were two of them when I was there and I remember wandering around school one November when one of them was empty and slipping a banger through a hole in the adjoining wall into the lesson next door and running like mad to get away.  I was also playing football one lunchtime on the back field when the crossbar came away and poleaxed the unfortunate goalkeeper who had to be taken to hospital. That image tickled me for years until I had kids of my own.  Phil Myers' letter describes me as 'John' McCadden but I am in fact Dave, and yes, I was 'always getting in trouble for something'  Phil.

But I didn't always get caught.  After four weeks I realised you could sneak in the back door of the dining hut, so I kept my dinner ticket money (remember those green tickets?) and spent it on far more rewarding things, Jubblies!  I also remember joining some kind of music club in the music room after school and walking off with bottles of cream soda which were kept in the store room next door.

I 'graduated' to Stand after passing the eleven-plus from Sedgeley Park Primary in Prestwich along with my chum Mark Smith, who later became Mark E. Smith of  The Fall fame. We used to get the 96 bus together in the morning, and I remember him taking a copy of The Groundhogs' LP 'Split' to school one day, which was very progressive, as my brother had a copy of this album and he also owned a guitar with the word 'Groovy' painted on it.   Anyway, I ended up in approved school, went back into education, moved to London and worked for MCA , then Polydor Records, then became a features editor for Just 17 before developing a cocaine habit and fleeing to Lancaster to get a degree in Social Ethics. I have been in twelve plays at Edinburgh Fringe, and performed as a stand-up comic and performance poet. I now live in Little Hulton (!) have two daughters and I'm on a teacher-training course at Bolton Institute.

And I hope I'll be a damn sight better teacher than the majority of the ones I encountered at Stand.  What goes around comes around.

Anyone want to contact me, my address is

Best wishes to Old Standians

I found the web site last night and it sure does bring back memories. However I do not remember singing "knock three times" as Rakesh states in his letter. As they say "I have no recollection of that".

I now live in Australia in the city of Wagga Wagga NSW (population around 60,000 and the largest in land city in NSW). If you have kids there is mention of Wagga in the Harry Potter books, and no I havent seen the werewolf yet although some of my colleagues do a fair impersonation . I am a Pathologist working in both the public and private arenas, married with 3 kids (girls 5,7,10) . I always said that daughters were Gods punishment to men for being boys!!! I must have been really bad as all my girls are good looking.

With regards school days I shall give them a thought over the next few days / weeks, but reading everyone else’s has given me a starting point.

A couple of things that do come to mind:

The burning down of the scout hut.....ooopps.

The water in the gas pipes..................oooooooooops

Remember when some put a sign on Hudsons door...The Ministry of Silly Ideas (I thought it was Silly Rules. Same difference! Martyn)

On a lighter side I remember when my father thought Windy Miller was a sixth former, Windy was not impressed.

I was one of the lucky ones to go sking with Brian. It was he that started of my sking career which included doing the Downhill course in Kitzbulle in 32mins, and I thought I was going too fast even at that speed,  and sking off a roof in Italy and crushing 2 vertebrae. I now take sking at a more gentle pace.

Regarding Keith Murden I can confirm that he has passed away. That was a few years ago now.

I shall, as mentioned, try to fill in a bit more in the near future and may even have some pics to send.

All the best

Peter Smart
ps. you can contact me either via my home address  ( or via this one.


Great web sites, but have to admit memories recalled are not fond ones.

My name, Paul Cowsill. I was in Form 1R back in 1970. For anybody out there, my long-lasting memory of 1R was that blasted map that had to be done in mapping pen, using a bottle of ink. It took me many times and tears to get that one right. Haggis took us for geography. He was a sod!! I remember the platform in 1R and in particular Broadbent, who took us for maths. He would sit comfortably in his chair and swing his slipper at your backside.

I can't say I have many fond memories of Stand. I was bullied all the way through school until the third year when a ring of bullies was exposed by a complaint to school by Broxop's parents and all those pupils bullied by the ring were interviewed one by one so the ring could be fully exposed. I recall the names of some of them - Gary Knot and Martin Sumner, to name two.

Was it Martin Sumner who could 'pump up a fart', under the desks at whim. I remember one of Schlesinger's french lessons, when he was undere the desk farting for England, and Slazenger still didn't twig. As a set group, we would roll up our trouser legs for Schlesinger.

Does any one remember the fight with the iron bar at the end of the art wing between Stephen Auty and Orrell? I was there. It was bloody, but memories are vague.

I remember, and still carry a small scar on my hand, where killer Crouchley placed a hot chisel he was grinding on my skin. Now he was a sadist! The stories of pupils being whacked with pieces of wood in woodwork are still all too vivid. It was  a place, wasn't it?

I remember Benjy Britten assaulting Keith Hargreaves, during a choir rehearsal, cutting Keith's face with his ring. Can't remember what came of that one. I can still see Britten casting his piano stool to one side in a fury on numerous occasions. Does anyone remember that lump on Brittain's neck. I can see it now.

I remember well Paul Godby and Paul Conway, as we were at Primary School together. I have contacted and had a reply off of Ken Lomax. Remember his dad's shop near the railway station? And all the time names and faces come to mind, just like the song forty years on says.

Signing off for now. I'll come back later with more.

Paul Cowsill

Received from John Bleasdale’s daughter, Sue:

My father recently died and I found this email in his drafts. I hope it is of interest to you. It seems a shame not to send it when he has gone to the trouble of writing it.

I was put in touch with your site by my No. 1 Daughter (She went to the girls part of Stand) and when I started browsing through it, I at first thought it was all modern stuff. (i.e. 1970s onwards.) But when names like Goofy and Old Man started popping up, the memories started coming back – not all pleasant!  So I dug out my school 'photo from October 1950 , the year I started, and there they all are, 500 or so n'er do wells and a line of older looking characters that would not look out of place in Broadmoor. I have great difficulty with names so I can't remember those of the inmates although some of the faces are familiar.

Starting on the left (you’ll need the 1950 School photo for this – Martyn) we have the school secretary followed by:

Johnny Ashurst. I don't remember being taught by him.
Mr. Lumley. Physics. Had trouble with his joints. As I recall, he was the only master who never used actual physical violence against us - he didn't need to! When he thundered at us that he would send us flying  “straight through that brick wall over there and across the playground".  Most of us believed him. However, once I realised these were idle threats, I adopted a more relaxed attitude.
Handsome Harry "Haggis" Hargreaves. Needs no introduction, although, as I recall, the pump was used very sparingly indeed in the early 50s.  Perhaps he started out with good intentions that gradually, and understandably, evaporated as the years went by
"Welsh Willie" Williams. I think he was something to do with science. Biology?
Next character,curly hair & horn rimmed glasses. Simply marked "extinct" on the Photo.
"Fluebrush" Moore. Dark hair & moustache.
"Crosseyes" ? extinct.
Mr Roberts ?
Mr Birch.? Short with very receeded hair & glasses
"Sap" Hamer.
Ernie Hanson. Maths. An intimidating sight with highly polished dome and horn rimmed glasses. I prayed on a daily basis that I would never end up in his class.
"Old Man"  Maths, I think. Another master who filled me with fear. I always imagined him to be a sadist.
"Sammy" Medlar. Headmaster.The strongest memory I have of him is when he buttonholed me on the balcony to inform me that I was the laziest boy in school. He then went on to give me some sort of a lecture, but I wasn't listening. At last I had excelled in something, and what's more, beaten everyone in the school! I never did get a certificate, however. If you are listening, Sammy, you were right. I have now found my niche and I am pursuing a successful career in early retirement.
Looking over Sammy's left shoulder is yours truly. I remember the boy on my left. I think his name may be Maiden.
Bill Evans. English. A master of sarcasm - or so it seemed to a 12 year old.
"Spike" Cotterill.
"Herbert" ? Extinct.

John Bleasdale (John is marked with an 'x' in the picture below)

Dear Martyn,

At a Christmas party a friend was telling me how much fun he'd had on a 'find a lost friend site,' so being bored with relatives on Christmas Day, I thought I'd look for Stand Grammar on the www & lo (or being Christmas time, behold),  your site appeared. Not only that, but my form 1P was individually itemised as was my 6th form 6B Ian Larah, Alan Raynard, Shaun Jackson, Steven Toyne, Russell Trevor Lewis Berg, Rob Cookson, Colin Glass & a guy whose name escapes me, but we used to have all night parties at his house in Radcliffe.

Yes, I was also chairman of 'Bubbles’ Clark's Model Railway Society and went on all the trips to Wales, Canals and the Isle of Man so fondly remembered by others.  Its a great site, and has made my Christmas Day. I remember the 6th form going on strike, but I can't see a reference to the Graffiti campaign. It was in Dr Barnes day, the school was being repainted and boys broke in and daubed the walls with slogans about Smelly Smethurst and Hairy Heinz, etc.  In assembly Dr Barnes said he was proud of his 100% record in finding miscreants and would catch the vandals. Next day we arrived to see 'you'll never catch us beaky' all over the walls. All the boys had to have their hands inspected and I was stood next to boys peeling paint off their hands! What happened next I can't remember, but it was fun at the time.

Believe me, for an old Standian your site beats a Christmas Bond film.

Cheers, Stephen Evans.

ps I remember Stephen Wood on the Middleton bus and I am so pleased he has 6 'O' levels and new S reg. Jag.

Hi Martyn

What stands out is that everybody who writes seems able to spell, unlike my kids. Now living in Leyland self-employed as Utility Project Manager and Consultant after 30 plus years in Norweb and United Utilities and others.

Heard about the site from a guy I work with - Ade Hughes.  I went to SGS 1959 to 1964 started form 1B with Johnnie Frith being the form master and the prefect Horrocks (don't know his first name didn't deal in those minor details), I think he is in middle row on the photograph 2nd from right, the second from the left is I think Dave Brooks who was also the 1st X1 football captain.

I can't recall all the class but started…

Creme (I think Lol was in 1B)
others were
Geoff Hale

Masters I remember who taught 1B were:
Maths:            Ernie Hanson, Room 10
English:          Joe Bogg (Ogden), Room 7
Science:         Kershaw who left at end of first year and was replaced by Mia Wobber.  Translated my name is "Mr Roberts", quite straight forward, Mia Wobber.
Geography:    Chippy Wood
History:          Goofy Hunter
Gym:             Killer Crouchley
Art:                Dobbin, Room 30
Music:           Longstaff “You dozy creature”, Room 29

Others we came across Mr Thompson who looked after the under 12 football, Mr Cheetham metalwork with a big funny Shooting Brake (as they were known in 1959), Mr Hargreaves (Haggis) who was around in my time on the football first X1 and whose training sessions nearly killed us the first time encountered.

New masters who arrived in the period 1960 to 64 included Smethurst teaching Maths, Keating previously mentioned as old boy teaching French? Davenport Science, Mrs Zena Goss the first woman I believe teaching Art and I think married to an Anglican priest.

I think I have some old photos somewhere so will dig up if I can.

Incident I remember was the doctoring of the piano in assembly so that it sounded like a honky tonk.  As A P W entered, the silence was deafening.

Old boys too numerous to mention but a few include Keith Jameson (Jamo) captain of football, Keighley brothers Steve and Roger and young one who I can't remember John and Frank Roebuck, Geoff Ingham who went to same junior school also.

Great site thanks for efforts.

Best wishes
Terry Bickerdike

Dear Martyn,

I've been out of touch with the school since I left to go to Imperial College in 1969, but I am very sorry to hear that the school is now demolished.  I started at Stand in 1959, in form 1b, A J "Johnny" Frith being the form master,and it wasn't long before I was recruited into the cross country running team, which he ran for many years.  He used to follow the runners on a green bicycle which soon obtained the nickname of "The Green Flash".

Other names from my first year include "Ernie" Hanson, who I think spent his whole teaching career at Stand, J A H "Joe Bog" Ogden, who must be responsible for my lack of expertise in the English language, and the genial "Joe Whit" Whitworth.

Other names include Jack "Wimpy" Longstaffe, who terrorised us all initially, but later he managed to interest me in classical music, an interest which remains to this day.  Names such as "Spike" Cotterill, "Fat" Fred Hill, Ivor Jones, and "Chippy" Wood are still vivid in my memory.

Later on,whan I went on to science subjects, "Les" Lumley is well remembered, as is W L "The Erg" Roberts. The Erg goes down as the teacher who taught me least , but Brien Crossfield fortunately taught me enough to pass A level chemistry.  During this time, the headmaster was A F Williamson, a man who seemed to exude authority, and who always obtained immediate respect and discipline, withoutever so much as raising his voice.   After graduating I spent the next 30 years travelling the world with British Airways, and now live in the Cotswolds.  Very nice to find your excellent website, which has prompted me to join the Old Standians.

Pity I didn't do it 30 years ago!


Brian Heywood (1959 to 1966)

Hello Martyn,

Came across the Stand site just by chance.  What a scream! I attended 69 -74 , forms - 1P, 2P, 3B, 4M, 5H - Yes I know those classes from the 3rd year on for those of us not too academic!  Can't say I'm too sorry to see the old school gone- there are a lot of prison buildings built around the same time that have now been demolished. Ah those memories of imprisonment (detention - Hairy put me there in my second lesson) and child beatings - pity it was so long ago - lost chance for compensation !

Me and my mate Chris Barbour were grassed up for writing 'Bengy is Queer' on his filthy dirty car (Austin Cambridge or Oxford) and got the usual 6 of the best. Years later when I heard he'd been found out felt like going back to say ' told you so!'. Never found out who the grass was - probably some first year getting their own back for some terrible torture we had inflicted on them!

Howard Holts photo of the u14's soccer team has mine and Chris's mug shots on it - not long after Chris did a runner to Radcliffe Sec. I remember Trevor Stevens - one of the smallest guys in the year but a cracking footballer and cricketer ! -are you still playing Trev? Only last summer I bumped into Neil Holt at Greenmount cricket club - now there's something two lads from a Manchester Council house overspill estate meeting up in Greenmount!

Used to see Mark Wilson fairly regularly (usually pubs around Whitefield) - still good company!  Does anybody have any info on Ged Byrom?  Used to be a good mate at school but I've not seen or heard of him since the day I left back in '74.

Wonder where this lot are now -  Chris Rose, John Barnes, Warren Kay , Mash Yeomans, Ian Abrahams,  Gaz Thomas, Alan Smith (used to be my best mate at Mersey Drive)  has anybody any info on what they are up to?

Stuart 'MANNY' Mansell 69-74


Fantastic site, bringing back so many great memories.

I was at Stand  from 1975 to 1982 and still remember the Register for class 1C:

Barry, Beswick, Borsay, Brooks, Chadwick, Clarke, Cruise, Eckersley, Glick,  Graham, Hassal,  Howarth,  Jones,  Law,  Lowe,  Mcintyre,  Moglia,  Morris,  Noone,  Pardon,  Perry, Reid,  Ryan,  Shaw,  Smith,  Taylor,  Theodocoiu,  Tunnicliffe,  Ware.

I know its sad but as I drive past the old site every day, the register seems to pop in my head.

Does anyone from the above list use your site?

I am currently still living in Whitefield all these years on and am a Software Systems Consultant for a Clinical GP Systems company.

Great site, keep up the good work. If anyone has any school photos from around this time, or remembers the great trip to Belgium playing footy in 8 inches of snow, please get in touch.


David Glick  (FLACK)

Hello Martyn,

Andrew Coakley here, just to say congratulations on a superb collection of memories from ex-Standians, especially from my era, starting in 1967 in 1S, with Roger Hanson & Co. I can't believe that Roger has remembered so many names.

It's been good to read the memories of those who attended my year, and just to let you know I see Mike Basnett and Jack Gilbert (I hope that's his first name), regularly at Radcliffe Swimming Baths, even saw Shinwell some time ago.

Just to give some background, I am now working for HSBC as a Credit Insurance Broker at Salford Quays.

If anyone knows the whereabouts of David Hersh, who emigrated to Israel many years ago, I would be grateful for the info.

It's amazing that the underlying factor is that everyone seems to remember 'Haggis', certainly my most abiding memory of the school regime.

Again it's been great reading the memories of the gang who commenced their education back in 1967, and also to see that your web site has reached David Crompton in Oz.

All the best to all Ex-Standians, particulary from 1967 onwards.

Andrew Coakley

Hi Martyn

Do I have any interesting tales? Wow, do I! My main memory is of Mondays at 9.30 and Fridays at 3.30, as that's when we had the formidable 'Wimpy' Longstaffe for music in the First Year. I had all the words and notes of Drink To Me Only With Thine Eyes drilled so deep into my subconscious, I can still recite it note for note 42 years on.

I remember a Teddy Boy called B K "Flab" Jones who dangled a bicycle from the Hall Ceiling one April Fool's Day; this was the same day the Beak's steps onto the stage were removed and assembly ended in chaos. I remember Lol Creme drawing cartoons of all the masters... a very talented artist who of course went on to found the group 10cc. I remember slide-tackling Haggis in the Boys v Masters game at the end of my first year sixth... the most satisfying moment in my short-lived footy career. I remember Dobbin the art master who could catch you with a board duster from twenty paces. But most of all I remember 'Johnny' Frith, the history master, racing round the x country course on his green bike and thwacking kids with his cricket bat pour encourager. A remarkable man who gave me my love of history. And finally there was the ultimate eccentric, the pianist John Ogden's father, Howard 'Joe Bog' Ogden, who inspired me to write for a living. In summer his main hobby was catching flies and putting them in his desk drawer, so as you left his class you could hear them all buzzing about. Bizarre, but what a teacher. Fond memories also of Brien Crossfield, my form master in the first year when I was having a difficult time adjusting to senior school life.

Sto Ut Serviam,

John Ward

Dear Martyn,

I discovered the SGS website just yesterday, and you cannot believe the memories it brought back! I was at SGS from 1962-1969 when Geoff Barnes was headmaster during my final years. I was so sorry to hear the school has been demolished, I visited it with my son about 5 years ago.

People I remember:

Teachers: Steve Fletcher and Dot, Haggis (of course!), Wimpy, Bill Short, Geoff Broadbent, Mr. Schlesinger, a sadist called
Heinz (he was worse than Haggis and nobody mentions him!) ,Reverend Somebody and Brien Crossfield.

Pupils: Dave Harrop, Mike Smith, Keith Wilkinson, Tony Airey, John Carr, etc. etc.

I have been living in Spain for the last 25 years, now in Barcelona, and now working as a financial consultant after a 20 year career in banking.

Anyway, I have to go now. Please could you get this into the letters section, and I think you are doing a great job maintaining this site and keeping memories alive!

Best Regards,
Martin Watson


Came across the Stand site via Friends Reunited and I must say it is superb.  I have spent hours wallowing in nostalgia reading the various contributions and at the same time letting out hoots of laughter on reading the numerous recollections of life at Church Lane.  I was an inmate from 1969-1976 - first year 1c "managed" by Windy Miller.  Like most of the old scholars I find it terribly sad that the building has been demolished - managed to take a few snaps of the site  in May but by then it was merely a pile of rubble.

I currently live in Prestwich but rarely bump into old classmates, apart from Ian Harrop who shares my "love" of Bury FC (well someone has to!!).  It would be great if anyone from my era could get in touch.

Interesting that many contributors recalled stories of Benjy Britton (I felt the full force of his board ruler on many occasions) - if only we could have read the signals at the time.  Which prison did he go to?  Inevitably Hargreaves' "Percy" was fondly remembered but I think Killer's rap on the hands with a block of wood was even more brutal (again personal experience comes into play).  The teachers of today can’t say boo to pupils without being prosecuted - no wonder discipline is non-existent.  Rant over!! I read Trevor Stevens' article on simulated masturbation in the classroom with interest.  I witnessed the actual act by a class mate in a Geography lesson -either glaciers turned him on so much or he was bored out of his skull!!  (I will not reveal his identity to save him from embarrassment).

Teachers that spring to mind - Chippy Wood, Ivor Jones, Smelly, Rev Roberts, Boulanger (great story on the open windows), Barrett the English teacher who gave out the same extract to write as a punishment for misbehaviour  and never collected it from the errant pupils.  The paper just got passed round the class from kid to kid for submission.  He also used to play classical records in music class but would clean the record with pieces of paper torn from exercise books and would then wonder why the needle on the record player jumped so much.  What a star!

Just seen the date for the reunion dinner but unfortunately can’t make it but my cheque for membership of the Association is in the post.  I hope to attend future events.

My email address is

Keep up the good work

Alan Breckin

Just trawling the net and,to my delight,came across the old school website.Very sad to read of the school's demolition though.

My wife and I are both Old Standians - 50's vintage. She was Valerie Steele at that time and I was still Charles Calderbank.

We have lived in the U.S.A. for over twenty years now and are happily retired in South Carolina.

Two names jumped off the screen from this first encounter.Alan Proctor - with whom Val and I have maintained contact over the years and Harry Wilkinson with whom I have had no contact since leaving Stand.I am sure that other old friends and associates will emerge.

We are about to go out for the evening but felt compelled to send at least a short note right away.  More anon.

Best wishes,

Charles Calderbank

Dear Martyn,

Thank you for adding our names to the list and you're right,the No.6 bus does not stop in Camden. We are sometimes in Lancashire in November however and it would be great to attend one of the reunion dinners. We will keep it in mind.

You asked for tales.  Perhaps my most vivid recollection, from many, of school life at Stand is of a mock election back in the fifties when Bancroft, the erstwhile communist candidate, became over-enthusiastic with one of his election stunts and walked along the rail of the balcony which surrounded the central hall. He was, predictably, expelled.

If memory serves (which it increasingly doesn't) this took place around the same time that the school play was "Lady Precious Stream"; the school film was "A Matter of Life and Death" and the staff slate included  Messrs. Medlar, Cottrell, Hanson, Ashurst, Bissell, Ogden, Crossfield et al.

Perhaps you have already heard from some of my contemporaries about this period but, if not, I for one would love to exchange a few reminiscences with them.


Charles Calderbank

Dear Martyn,

Have just come across the site by accident.  What memories and laughs reading through the e-mails.

I attended from 1965 - 1970, my brother Peter was four years before me and my sister Janet was a year behind at the girls school.  My biggest claim to fame at SGS certainly wasn't academic!!  I was in the choir and perfomed solo with the Halle Choir after winning a competition to find the best "school boy singer in Lancashire".

I too was on the school skiing trip to Selva in 1970.  When we got back, Pedley, can't remember his first name, got a cup for being the best skier. Photo attached is the Stand Under 13 Cross Country Team 1966/7 season. I am third from left on the back row.  The only other names I can remember are Dave Kirk 2nd left front row and Gary Butterworth middle front row.

The only remembered Teachers sayings:

Jack Longstaff - You blithering idiot.
Headmaster Mr Barnes - Hold your hand out while I hit you with this cane. (I heard that too many times!!)
I also remember killer Crouchley hitting us across the knuckles with pieces of timber for leaning on his bench while he was demonstrating various woodworking techniques

I joined the RAF in 1970 and served 23 years.  I am now settled in rural Norfolk, running my own business.

I'll revisit the site to see if any familiar names pop up.  The only one that I recognise from my year so far is John Hall. I hope that the photos bring back some memories.

Nigel Booth

Clive Feingold. Went to Stand I think in 1948 to the Vic univ Manchester. Dentist, now retired due to ill health, dec 1999.

I would like to add my e mail address to your links. I was in SGS between 1975 and 1980 and found this site
through someone who I had found through another internet site. Was very upset and moved when I saw the pics of
the rubble. Now living in USA.

Dave Rose

Hi Martyn,

Great Website!

Came across it through a chance conversation with work colleague Bob Holt (an old Standonian). Spent the next 4 hours reading the letters and looking for clues relating to Class 1C 1966. Then I spotted the boys Hewitt and Christmas. In all my life I never have come across another Christmas - yes Dave I was that Parsons you refer to in your letter. I also remember the Bob Leigh incident.

I was at Stand (Clive House) from 1966 to Spring term 1969 - my father changing jobs once again and dragging the family to yet another location, this time across the border to Bingley Grammar in Yorkshire!  Oddly this school was recommended to my father by Dr Barnes; the headmasters name was Cotterell - spooky or what? My elder brother, Mike Parsons, also attended the school for approx one year in 1966, prior to being granted a place at Bath University reading Chemical Engineering. I believe that he was a star pupil of Mr Crossfield.

I can state with all conviction that during my educational years, when I attended 13 different schools, none left me with such a profound sense of under achievement than Stand. However, in saying that the lessons learned (not in a literal sense!) were more pertinent and the memories more vivid than of any other educational establishment I attended - you can't say fairer than that.

I would liken the school to an independent boarding school of Dickensian times with the principles (or principal) of Stalag 13. The teaching methods were aligned to the philosophy of 'carrot and stick' but with no carrot. However the staff were always fully committed or should have been!  Anyway less of the praise or I may start feeling nostalgic.

Some of my personal memories:

I had better stop, I am starting to feel sentimental and experiencing that warm glow when nostalgia creeps up on you. Do you know it may not have been that bad after all? Nurse, bring me the jacket with the arms that buttons round the back! I am sure there was a nut house somewhere near the school on the cross country run; perhaps I'm in it?

Please post my e-mail address on the site. I could do with the other inmates keeping in touch.

Regards to all ... Derek (Parsnips) Parsons.

Hi Martyn,

Thanks for a brilliant website. I have to admit that once I saw the Stand badge on the home page all the terrible memories came flooding back and I almost quit the site. Thankfully I carried on and enjoyed it immensely, especially reading what the former pupils had to say. I was reminded that there we did have some good times at Stand despite the efforts of the teachers.

I was at Stand from 69-75 and have often wondered what happened to other classmates especially Gary Marsh, and Craig Peck. Craig was a really funny guy and rewrote the lyrics of Gaudeamus Igitur, which became Guard Your Arses While You’re Here, and did a version of Forty Years On (when we farted like thunder).

After leaving school I joined the Air Force and during basic training I met up with another Stand old boy, Lance Spruce (Spoofer), who had been in the same form as me at Stand. I don't know what happened to Lance after basic training other than he went off to train as an Air Traffic Controller!

Thanks to Colin Green for reminding me that I was carried home drunk in Germany, though this wasn't the last time as I went to live there for 3 years in the late 70s. I seem to remember that the day after Colin was carried home drunk in Yugoslavia we went on a coach trip with many of us suffering from the night before. I can't remember who was given the task of emptying the waste bin which, as the journey progressed, became full of sick, but it might well have been Colin. Am I right in thinking that on one school trip abroad some pupils went on the rampage and ended up getting arrested? What happened to Mark Wilson, did he have a spell in HMP?

I went to primary with Mark and knew him quite well so I would be interested in the story.

Kind regards,

Dave Lewis

Hello there,

Lovely to have news about Stand Grammar School - devastated to hear that it's been demolished - is this true ?

I  was a student at Stand Grammar School for girls until 1976 ( I'm now 45 and have been living in France for the past 22 years). I would love to have news about anyone from the boys or girls school wo were around at that time.

I remember in particular the carol services we had with the boys school and the Whitefield Tennis (cricket?) club where we used to have parties !

Thank you for any info you may have.


Ex pupil at Stand Grammar School  for Girls
Susan Carter (now Susan Gronier)

Hi Martyn

The following reminiscences are sent "Without Prejudice" ?

Shortly after the inception of 'Radio Caroline', does anyone remember 'Radio Stand' broadcasting rock music via 6B's form room window (wild-life safari) at break and lunchtime. The powerful? system was also used in the Standian version of the hustings at the mock 'General Election 1966' – the year James Jackson beat all-comers representing the Communist Party! That result made the local papers!

Then there was the militarily-planned and superbly executed capture and transmission by car (unheard of in those days) to the Girls Grammar School of the Deputy Head Boy (one S P Jennings) following his 'taking' of Assembly one morning. J H Jackson - getaway driver extraordinaire (again) if I remember correctly! The crowning glory / ignominy was the ceremonial de-bagging within the Girls' quadrangle of the said hostage; before we, sorry, I mean they legged it and returned to school somewhat euphoric that the scheme had materialised at all, let alone run so smoothly.

I wasn't surprised at the enforced downfall of the School Folk Club the year after my own departure. It was held conjointly with the Girls School (and ever fully subscribed) in Whitefield Tennis Club's pavilion. Out of hours, out of uniform, out of bounds and pretty much out of our minds (via C2H5OH) by the later hours. Pretty tame by today's standards but how did we manage to get away with it for so long before anyone in authority latched on and enquired as to the detail of the venue?

Maybe ...  this closure foretold the demise of the school itself? Maybe ...  the sadistic and lunatic elements of the school (and here I do mean Staff) had gone unrecognised over the years by 'the Authorities'? Certainly there was a common theme running through the various measures adopted by the differing staff members to attain/retain attention and/or discipline - VIOLENCE AGAINST THE PERSON !  Such measures would today be subject to instant curtailment via several articles of the Human Rights Act. If only such an act had been available in those days ... ...  But then this web page would be utterly bland or probably non-existent. So we are left with the adage "All good things must come to an end" - as must my reminiscences for this session ... ...  BUT THERE MAY BE MORE TO COME ... ... ?

Whatever happened to Peter McIlraith, Roger Bryan, Steve Bentley, Len Loman, Phil Greene &so many others, especially the backwards: nitraM yeliaB?

Geoff Ingham

Martyn,                                                                                 29th October 2001

It is a real pleasure to find your site.  I thank all of you for your services to the Association.  I understand the feelings of many Old Standians about recent events, but must confess have never myself attended one of your meetings.  I feel the demolition as keenly as many others, though.  For better or worse, we are all tied by memory to Stand Grammar School, and so I hope that the Association does continue.  To address the Honourable Secretary's query in Notes and News (September 2001), I also hope that the association will welcome those Old Standians associated with the Sixth Form College

I was at Stand in the final traditional phase, from 1974 to 1981, as it became a Sixth Form College.  My memories of that time, I'm afraid, are of the election of Mrs. Thatcher in 1979 and all that brought our region.  She epitomized the grammar school child made good.  The English woman -- as I once heard an Irish priest define it -- who worshipped her own maker.  Latterly, I led a group of American students to Grantham, her birthplace, and their fresh perspectives gave me a more positive view of the English class system.

Stand was a true bastion of middle class values and I both celebrate them and feel for those who never accommodated themselves to the grammar school ethos.  Later in life I recognized how strangely out of place such values seemed in 1970s Bury, Manchester and Lancashire (being so 'Independent School' and 'Home Counties' based).  Probably this is just a generational thing.

During a brief foray into the teaching profession, though, I concluded you were better off in the middle ranks of a comprehensive school than the bottom, neglected levels of a traditional grammar school (I recall one Maths teacher telling me 'even the monkey gets more on the multiple choice than you, Leaver!').   Significantly, I started out in a Secondary Modern School (Heys Road, now Prestwich High),so Stand was a real step up in 1974 (or seemed so then)!  Gotta love the 11 plus (ok, so I'm an American now!).

Frankly, I felt a whole lot better, at the time and still do, about the Sixth Form College, and remember teachers there (Shuttleworth, Cain and Hunter) as fondly as many I had in the lower school.  Although, I look at that list now, and recognize them all as good teachers from the grammar school. Cain excepted?  I cherish memories of teachers in grammar or college who went the extra  mile to help us along, both when we were struggling and when we excelled (such teachers exist in all good institutions).

As to incidents, I recall some tongue in cheek Head boy orations delivered at Speech Day by Chris Chambers, smoking in 'the dip' with 'I've got a bit of a headache (on Fridays) Jack Russell (French)' and, of course, Ben Hodson.  I'm thankful to David Hudson for telling mum that it was a tribute to her that I wanted to go away to University; but even there found no use at all for Latin (except some preparation for continued arm twisting into the study of the Venomous Bede)!

I hope school traditions will be maintained, the Association survives and that the differing perspectives of all those who attended the school from its 1913 Church Lane inception (none now alive?) to its July 2000 closing (was 'school' really founded in 1688?) will unite to preserve memories of an institution that served such a vital part in all our many and differing lives.

Dr. John David Leaver, Cincinnati, Ohio, U.S.A. or

University of Cincinnati, Raymond Walters College

Can you please add me to your e.mail page?

I was at the school from 1954 to 1959

Ray Sims           e.mail is

Regards. I think the site is great!

Hi Martyn

Just this minute found THE site. Brilliant!  So many memories bursting to come to full recollection.

Can't say we've met as I left in '66 (after serving the full sentence - no remission) but the messages are wonderful.

I'll dig out my memorabilia and be in touch further.

Membership form printed and ready to post.

Fame: - Clive of India OK,  Lol McGinty, OK, but what about Lol Creme (10cc!?! & Godley & Creme)

Speak soon, Cheers

Geoff Ingham

I've just spent the most entertaining few hours reading through your Stand Grammar website - absolutely brilliant! The letters and reminisces from our ex-colleagues are hilarious, so good that I've been spurred on to add my own recollections.

My name is Colin Green and I started in 1C in September 1969. For some godforsaken reason I was known as "Taffy" - well actually I do know the reason, on my first day this kid called Alan Breckin said, "oh you look like a Taffy"- and it stuck! Having come to Stand from Crumpsall the only other kid I knew was Duncan Maffia (who now appears to be in Canada - Dunc it wasn't that bad was it?) oh and also my cousin started the same time, Mark Wilson!

Memories of school - school trips to Germany in 1971 (Dave Lewis getting carried home drunk), Yugoslavia 1973 (me being carried home drunk!). I remember the incident described previously on the site where a group of lads went on strike but there was also another occasion where a revolt took place in round about 1973. I think it followed a prefect having ago at a younger lad anyway the outcome was that about 12 lads were called to the headmasters office the next day to receive the cane (I was one of them but for the life of me can't remember what exactly it was for!). The graffiti affair – for about a week we hurried to school to find out what had been written on the walls!

Teachers - all the usual suspects, Haggis, Smelly, Benji (I remember seeing the newspaper article in the Salford Advertiser saying he had been pulled in for importuning!), Hairy Hynes, Iggy Jones (obviously an influence on the glam rock scene of the early 70s!) and Killer Crouchley. I’m surprised I've not seen a reference to Benji's temporary replacement - was he called Barratt? Looked like a monk, mad as a hatter! There was also a French teacher who used to (literally) drum in to your head the correct spellings by banging your head with a textbook!

Famous ex - pupils - we've already heard about the god-like Mark E Smith but has nobody else twigged that Toby Lyons (he of the infamous poster) also had his fifteen minutes of stardom in the 80s band The Colour Field (three top twenty hits in 1984). I've also a faint recollection that two guys out of 10cc were at Stand (Lol Crème and Kevin Godley - can anyone confirm?). For definite the Lancashire County Cricket wicket keeper Warren Hegg is an old boy and somebody once told me ex- World Champion snooker champ also graced our hallowed building.

Since leaving Stand I have come across the following, Terry Bickerdike (worked with him at Norweb, said he attended Stand in the early 60's), Paul Sofield and Ian Shinwell (worked with them at Norweb for many years). Terry Lomax and Pete Molyneux (fellow members of J Stands barmy army – Pete Molyneux gained infamy for his Fergie Out banner in 1989 and is also well known by Reds all over the land for his insistence on wearing shorts in all weathers!).  Gaz Walker who sits two rows behind us in J Stand, Steve Lewis who lives somewhere near me in the Sedgley Park area. Also Dougie Bryson who now lives next door to ex Salford Jets lead singer Mike Sweeney! I bumped into Neil Holt at a wedding reception a few years ago - he told me about some drawings he had produced of the current United team. They were subsequently offered for sale in the United Review - top quality! A couple of times I've come across a cycling Mike Carty who works for the Social Services in Wythenshawe. I also travelled to Sheffield in 1980 to watch the band Split Enz at the Top Rank there - whilst having a drink at the bar I was approached by the manager, a bow-tie-wearing Warren (Wazzer) Kay! I've also bumped into my cousin Mark Wilson both before and after his stay at HMP - he's doing ok (I loved the "just logging in to see if anyone would like a fight" message!

Anybody know the whereabouts of my classmates Steve Lane, John Ratcliffe and Cyril Jones? I also remember Howard Holt (known as HD to avoid confusion with the same years Neil - Howard have you still got your New Seekers records?) other lads I remember, Ged Byrom, John Barnes, Andy Map, and Alan Edwards.

If I remember any more Ill be in touch - would appreciate hearing from any of my old classmates.


Col Green


I was browsing the web and came across your Stand Web Site. Amazing!!! After all these years that I can still recognize "Haggis" and Brien Crossfield. I attended 1963-1967 left and spent 2 years at Marine College, spent 4 years drifting the world as a Radio Officer in the Merchant Navy, 14 years with ICL as a  Computer Mainframe engineer. Now 14 years with a US company (Computer/Integration work) drifting the world - Japan, Middle East, States etc (Hostaged in Iraq/Kuwait 5 months). And STILL I remember the words to the Old Founders Day songs!!!

I will fill out an application form for Old Standians membership and get it to you.

Keep up the good work. I'd really like to get in contact with old boys.

Your photos show room 29 (Wimpy's (Music Teacher) old room!!! what a tyrant!) my old form room class 2c in 1964.


Derek Hill (Nickname at school - Yugs)


Just found your excellent web site. Sad to see pictures of the demolition, but it brought back memories. I never re-visited the school, and only saw it
again from the road, once or twice.

Joined in '68 and left in '75. From Haggis, to Jock Weir, to Killer Crouchly. Known as "Man Mountain" and "Tank" for a while, but what stuck was just my initials ... DC. Dunno how this started, but it meant that a lot of people had heard of me before I'd even met them, but the downside was that the name carried on outside of school, and I got sick of it in the end. Now I'm just plain, old David ... phew! I moved south in '83 and have been here ever since, but still visit north Manchester to see family and friends.

I'll try and look up some of my old school reports for crazy comments. I also have the shool magazines from the years I was there, and the school photo (took me years to get it framed), which would've been taken in 74 or 75.

3rd year I was in a class with Mark Smith - Mark E. Smith of The Fall. Interesting fact - his father (Fred, I think) was our family plumber for
years, but he sadly passed on a few years back.

Just writing this email has the memories flooding back. Could you add me to the email list - thanks (

David Cohen

Hi Martyn!

I have enjoyed reading your S.G.S. web site, and was interested to read that you remembered the trip to Selva in 1970.   I have often thought of going back there, but have recently restricted myself to resorts in Austria and France.

I was pleased to see all those names from the past, some of whom I see regularly at the annual dinner of the association , and others I do keep in touch with. Will you be at the dinner in November? You'll remember John Hunter and Derek Broadbent, we write to each other once a year and swap info about past times.

At present I am on my son's computer but have an email address on it which i can be contacted through. It was funny to see my picture on the site, was that taken at the last dinner?

All the best, see you in November I hope!

    Best wishes
       Brien Crossfield

Wonderful to discover your website! Congratulations. It's literally 'Forty Years On' for me, but your contributors have certainly brought back many memories.  Are the teachers of today such characters as 'Spike' Cotterell, Deputy Head to Austin Fred Williamson in my day, or Arthur 'Clipper' Morris, Fat Fred Hill, Jo Bog, 'Whimpy, and all the rest? I think not!  I also remember with affection Mrs Ludlum, the school cook, and her excellent
school meals, which we little appreciated in those days.     I am still good friends and in touch with one or two from that era:-  Dave and Jud Spears,
Rick Robinson.  Others I haven't heard of since I left:- Chris Mortimer, Colin Anderson, Ian Johnston, and many more.

Semper Sint in Flore!
Steve Bonnet ( 1B  2L  3E  4L  5E  6B 7B).


I found your Stand Grammar School website via the network.  You've certainly brought back a lot of memories.  Some of the names were of people I had forgotten existed.  I found it amusing to see the names of the "older boys" who were prefects a few years before me.  I remember how at that time, I wanted to be their age.  Now, they want to be my age!  I don't want to mention their names in case some of them still think they can put me in detention, but it's odd that they seem to be mostly dentists now!!  The sadistical streak was inbuilt.

Anyway, on to more serious matters, I was at Stand until 1977.  Came through 1S - 5S, and then 6M-7M.  I have had no contact with anyone from my class for 20+ years, and I'd be delighted to hear what has become of people.

I'd also like to hear any news about my 6th form teachers: Mr Broadbent, Mr (Baz) Brooks and Mr Revie.

On the personal side, having lived in the London area from 1980-1997, I moved to Israel just over 4 years ago.  Believe me, Israel is a lot more fun that you might have concluded from CNN!!  Whilst it's raining and cold in England, we're on the beach, in a swimming pool, or driving off road over  mountains or through the desert!!  I've been married to Dorit for 9 years, and we have 2 kids .. Lee (7) and Sophie (4.5).

I run an investment and outsourced sales company, which I founded 3 years ago.  See

I'd be delighted to hear from any of the old crowd!!


Stuart Ballan

Dear Martyn,

A brilliant web site. The repetitive Gaudeamus tune an excellent touch. I was at Stand from 1960 to 64, arrived in the 4th year from Cheshire. Left with 5 "O" levels, and grade E in physics at "A" level, friends for life, a deep sense of "academia" and memories which have entertained me ever since.

I became a physics teacher, spending a year or so at Abden Street School, Radcliffe, my first appointment. That too gave me entertaining memories for life. Subsequently spent over half my working life at an Outdoor Education Centre in the Lake District. Currently cruising into retirement as head of an outdoor learning centre in Yorkshire. Collected higher degrees, research papers in experience and personality/behaviour change which received good reviews.

My close friends are Steve Bonnet, same year, who lived on Radcliffe New Road. His Mum was head of a Radcliffe primary school. Steve has been a G. P. near Southport since graduating. Dave Spears, same year, now living and working near Stevenage, owned Science Pictures, an expert in micro biological and natural filming - has shot parts of 'Dinosaurs', made 'Nature in Focus' and specialist parts of  many of the Brit natural history films.

Memories of  teachers - Brian Crossfield (Scoutmaster) I was in the school hall waiting for the scout meeting to start one Friday evening when he arrived to tell us Pres. Kennedy had been shot. He let me arrange a mock accident one dark Friday night in Church Lane outside school for the younger scouts to come across and sort out. It caused quiet chaos until the Police arrived.

Friday afternoon, Chemistry practical, subversively making nitrogen tri-iodide, I think, which was put under mats and on the floor to dry out by Monday morning when it would explode on touching.

Norman Dobbin - Scoutmaster trusted us to paddle across Red Wharf Bay, Anglesey in canoes we had made ourselves. Ready to smash up a gang of local youth jeering at us and throw them over the cliff, talk about CONFRONTATION.

Ernie Hanson - maths incredibly accurate with a board rubber, even at long range. "Gradients are horse sense, the milkman’s horse knows to go up Stand Lane by zig zagging".

Clipper Morris - Latin standing in a row "to be clipped for not doing homework, boy".

Smiler Williamson - the Head, was it a nervous affliction or was he on our side?

Mike Esplin - economics, who never taught me but was a scoutmaster.

I,  having a driving license, sat in the front seat on long journeys while he learnt to drive. He only had one eye - exciting! Climbed with his brother, a refuse collector at the time, and still a close friend.

Would be interested to hear from Stu Pickup with whom I did some scout badge expeditions  through blizzards in the Peak District, climbs in the Alps (when I returned to school with a beard and had to wear a cap) and the 4 Inns Walk.

Pity the hall was filled up, walked round the balcony rail one afternoon. Who was the younger pupil who was walking up Higher Lane from the direction of the girls school at lunch time when a lorry ran over a tin of white paint left in the road next to him? His silhouette could be seen outlined on the wall by the paint for months after.

The entertainment provided by the staff at Stand Grammar is now unbelievable and is a memory I will take to my nursing home and beyond.

Richard Robinson (lived in Ashbourne Grove, younger sister Gillian at the girls school)


Whilst clearing out my loft, I came across a box of stuff from my school years (sad, innit) and I have a copy of the Daily Mirror withe the Dave Crook story in it.  I will scan it and send it onto you when I get the chance. I remember about 5 of us sneaking down to the shop by the railway station at break time to buy a copy whilst going for a smoke and avoiding the guards on the gate (Hairy Hynes, Al Smith and Baz Brookes). It was 1977, the incident, as it was when i was in the 5th year.

The year previous I remember as it was the only time I received the cane from Tab Hunter.  He used a piece of gardening cane about 10" long after giving me a lecture about forests fires for 10 minutes. The prefect that caught us was Phil Service and the other bad lads were Steve Lomax and Dave Partington.

Regards, Nigel Warburton 1972 - 79

Martyn, I was put onto your site by Gary Leversedge, who i think was a year or two above me but who I see infrequently through work.  I , like several others who have contributed don`t remember you (sorry!) but then I'll bet not many old boys will remember me either, except those who played soccer for the Old Standians between `78 and 85 when I did.

My name is Gary Walker and I was at Stand from 1970 -1976, and my time there was pretty unremarkable, but I have to say that I was surprised at the buzz I got from reading the  contributions sent in by other old boys.

Memories, good and bad, came rushing back and it was quite disconcerting to realise I actually remember a great deal more of my time at Stand than I thought I did.

A lot of the names mentioned of both masters and pupils are instantly recognisable even now, and I'm sure with a bit of thought I could remember  the names of the majority of the lads in my year.

I did keep in touch with some of the old boys through the football club but sadly it has been a while, although I did bump into Harry Wilkinson a few weeks ago, and I still see Steve Curle and Steve Angold  at Man United away fixtures.

I hope the site has spurred me to renew a few of those contacts but for now , does anyone remember the `marathon hikes` that Haggis used to organise? Did any one reading this go to Konigsee, Bavaria, in 1972?  I still have the photo taken in the salt mines in Salzburg where we all had to dress in black coveralls and wear Tommy Cooper hats, riding on a mini railway!

Has anyone got `Nightingales Boys ` on video?  I bet that makes interesting viewing now.

Does anyone remember `Windy` Miller (history), Keith Bradshaw (history) or `Chippy` Wood (geog) ?

Miss Boulanger married a neighbour of mine and now has a brood of kids!

`Jasper` Swift is now head of maths at Tottington high School and teaches my son, and his favourite word is still `LAMENTABLE`!!

With regard to the photo of the U14 X1, Andy Taplin etc, it's Barry Hanson, not Russ (sorry if you already knew that!).

I could go on for ages but I will definitely revisit `cos there is nothing like a trip down memory lane. Thanks a lot.

Gary Walker (1c,2c,3g,4l,5g)
Ex Prestwich, via Tottington, now in Oswaldtwistle.

I was just whiling away a few idle hours on my computer and decided to re-visit the Stand web site. It's amazing just how many more contributors it has picked up in the last few months from pupils covering quite a significant time span as far as attendance at Stand was concerned. In truth, it's all down to you for your efforts in not only establishing the site but actually maintaining it as time passes.

What I find amazing is that, for most of us it would seem that once we left Stand we might perhaps keep in touch with close friends we made there but, apart from that, lose contact with most others. Not only that but those years spent at school seem to merge into perhaps a single composite memory which is then filed away in some ever more distant filing cabinet together with "Flared Trousers I Once Wore", "Testicular Vocal Assistance From Benjy Britten", "Bollocks Haggis Blasted With A Cold Hose Pipe Whilst we Walked Backwards Through The Shower" and so on. It took years of counselling to get over that last one.

Then along comes the internet and so forth and now we have people accessing the site from all over the show.: - a knock on effect of a technological revolution most of us could never have imagined  when we were pupils. In fact, apart from trying to get into the knickers of any girl from the girls school and wondering what the hell Towey was on about when he spoke of "Calculating Engines" as he whipped me about the head with a board duster (I had counselling for that, too!), I can't think of anything else I thought about.

Anyway, enough of that. I read Kevin McGowans contribution and viewed the prefects photograph. I am listed as being on the photograph together with my brother Dean. Not true! Dean is certainly on it with his distinctive white forelock (now long since gone as the ravages of time take its toll on his hairline) but not me. I'm the handsome one out of the two of us (counselling again) and I don't see any other lookers on that photograph (sorry lads)! I noticed Mick Waring on the photograph, buggering about as he always did. I wonder where he is now?

Somebody asked who the other classical studies teacher was. It was  Costello-Jones and he, as I recall, organised some school plays including "Murder in the Red Barn". Bloody good bloke to boot. I think he was friendly with that mad chemistry teacher, Jimmy Pearce. Jimmy Pearce was a dyed in the wool red (as in politics, not Man U) and always appeared to wear a red shirt to work  Come to think of it, the dirty bugger probably wore the same red shirt to work every day, but there you are.

I think its time to join the Old Standians now my Forty Years are up and see what's going on. I've already had e-mail's from Neil Thompson and Doug Flynn and it would be nice to see some of the lads again. Probably be interesting to meet some of the teachers too, provided their respective nursing homes allow them a pass out!

By the way, Helen Ortons car was a magnificent racing green MG BGT, limited edition Jubilee model and the registration was UNE 6S as in "a success" as some other contributor rightly recalled. Bloody top drawer teacher too, as was Greg Mountain who taught me economics.

See you soon

Wayne Jackson 


Good to see the old school, albeit only in virtual form now, on the internet.

Whilst I have no more good stories to add (they all seem to have been told), I would like to know how many ex-number 6 bus route travellers there are out there from Rainsough and beyond.

Also, as we used to share that journey with Stand Girls, do they have a similar web site to this anywhere?

All the best

Duncan Beech  1966-1973

PS I have been trying to find Howard Coomber late of St Margarets. Anyone have an email address for him?

Hello Martyn,

I recently received the usual entertaining letter from Harry Wilkinson covering the O.S. Football Club, in which he mentioned a web site without giving the domain.  Thanks to Google I traced you.

As an old, old boy I was sentenced to 5 years at S.G.S (Clive House) from 1956 to 1961 when, thanks to the courtesy of the A. F. Williamson I was encouraged to leave.  Bear in mind this was just about the only encouragement I ever received whilst there.

Strange isn't it, it's only when you look back that you realise what a great time it was and a good place to be.  I am still loosely connected to the O.S.F.A and am kept in touch by newsletter and by my brother-in-law, John Earl.  There my secret is out, I've now admitted not only knowing, but also being related to him.

Reviewing the web site brings back many fond memories, most of which revolve around football and mathematics.

To help with the 1958/59 prefects photo - middle row, 2nd from left is Dave Brooks who went on to captain the first XI until he broke his leg.

Master memories:
Fred Hill - Fat Fred - constantly twiddling with his ear lobe.
Whitworth - Joe Whit - walking backwards and tapping the sole of his shoe on the wall.
? Knott - Boris - entering the classroom with his cloak over his head, a la Mr Karloff.
J Frith - Johnny - making you clear your desk of all books if entering one of his classes after forgetting a text book.
? Hunter - Goofy - came to school with his hand in some sort of clear plastic bag after an injury.
? Ogdon - Joe Bog - the first shaven-headed master.
? Crouchley - Killer - dynamite from 10 feet with a board duster.
? Cockerell - Spike - how the hell did he expect a Radcliffe boy to pronounce French words?

That's enough for one day, the emotions are now running.

Les Yates

Dear Martyn

Please find attached a jpeg file of the Stand Boxing Club circa 1955.

Left to right...

Back row: Teachers are Mr Whitworth (Joe Whit) and Mr McDonald. Unknown. Fogg. Nelson. Jeff Galley. Jeffrey Heilpern.

Front row: Butterworth. Ian Walker. Brian Walker. Mike Passant. Stanley Black. Horner.

This message comes to you from Mike Passant and Gabriel Jacobs, who yesterday saw each other for the first time, *literally* 40 years on (since leaving Stand). An amazing experience. We have other photos.


Professor Gabriel Jacobs
Dean of the Faculty of Business, Economics and Law
European Business Management School
University of Wales Swansea

I manage to keep a regular watch on the site, last mail I sent however must be nearly a year ago.  It was tough to see the monument to education being destroyed, and seemingly with it, over a century of history and memories. This scene prompted me to dig out some old photos, to help keep alive the spirit of SGS.

The all time classic memory does have to be the Dave Crook affair, complete with flat cap, braces and a black pudding.  Just one piece of additional information, the article and I think the photo appeared in the Daily Mirror (I think) one or two days after the event.  Ian Macauley gave the story to his father, who was a journalist for one of the daily rags. If you did a search you may come up with the article (don't quote me but I'm sure it was in 1976).

Other classic memories do of course involve Haggis. One time I was playing for the U12's with father watching, as the speedy winger began to race past me to the by-line my father shouted out " CROP HIM DOUG." Whilst the ball was still in play Haggis blew the whistle,  stopped the game, approached Dad and told him "We don't play like that at this School."

I also recollect a time when one of the larger boys in the class (Les Hardman) was ceremoniously laid on the cricket pitch and Hargreaves had 4 boys roll him down the 22 yards to the other end and said it was better than using the pitch roller. I'm sure he could have managed a professional consultancy business in Humiliation Skills.  Perhaps he gave private lessons to  Anne Robinson: “You are the weakest link-- Goodbye!!”

Anyway, enjoy the photos, hope you can use them. (Photos to follow when I carve out some room! - Martyn)

Doug Flynn
(still living in Dubai)

Hi Martyn

Found your web site only recently, it certainly brought back one or two memories. I was at Stand from 1973-1978 in the Phillips House. Bit of a shock to see the old school has been demolished, although I must admit I fall into the category of hating the place during my time there. Don't know whether it's my memory playing tricks but I'm sure most of the teachers were psychopaths, (Haggis, Towey, Hairy Hynes etc.). One exception to this was Jasper, who was an excellent teacher, wouldn't have passed my Maths O Level without him I'm sure. Seem to remember he had an almighty swing with the gym shoe though (like most teachers at that time), always took a couple of steps back then whack you one after a run up.

One or two teachers that spring to mind:

Physics teacher can't remember his name (Ken Ben Len)- flicking ink soaked blotting paper onto his back whilst he was writing on the board. What a complete twat he was. Think he was the one who used to say "Listen lads, I'm a very fair man" which sounded like "Listen lads, I'm a Bury Fair man". Childish, but very funny at the time!

Metal work teacher, again can't remember his name - used to always say "The trouble with the younger generation of today is they just can't be bothered!"  I'd spend some time remembering his name if I could, but I can't be arsed. (Maybe he was right after all).

RE teacher again no name,(think there's a pattern emerging here)- He suffered all kinds of abuse and had no control over classes whatsoever. He didn't last too long, I think the final straw came when he said during class "The trouble with this school is, it's just too working class". Snobby twat came up with a sure fire way to win us over there didn't he! I remember Paddy McCafferty coming in from the class next door to keep us under control with the threat of violence. Always seemed to work from him for some reason!

I'm almost sure the Granada production filmed at Stand during the Seventies was called "Nightingales Boys", although somebody may know otherwise.

I'll try and rack my brain for one or two other memories if I can (although it could take a while).

Could you add my name to the e-mail list, it would be good to hear from anybody I knew from my school days.


Mark Barlow

Hello Martyn,

Well another term begins and they start laying sewers in the new housing development- poetic one  way or another, suppose?  Remarkable site, not least because so many of us have taken the time and trouble to find it and contribute.  I've just read Tush's bit and I have to contradict him a little. Helene Orton's M.G. was registered UNE 6 S (A SUCCESS, apparently!?).  Perhaps he got confused with the Mythical PEN 1 S, which was reputed to drive around Whitefield! (Actually, unsurprisingly, this registration was never issued - I checked with DVLA).  I see HRO is on Friends Reunited. "Perhaps if you put a little piece on this site, Miss, we could all get in touch more easily?"

More news is that Chippy Wood is very alive and well and playing the organ in my Church. A hidden talent there, he's actually very good at it! I have to admit to "obtaining" 2 bricks from the building, as did a lot of people I have spoken to! One is suitably engraved (by a friend, Phil Worthington) and rests in my kitchen.

Oh well, gotta go and listen to The Stranglers and drink another beer!


Phil Dean


What depressing pictures of the demolition.  My name is Kevin McGowan, I was at Stand from 1971 – 1978, as far as I can remember.  Other things in the dim and distant, 1p, 2p, 3g, 4a, 5 something, 6lb maybe, 7la perhaps, Digger, Hairy, Windy, Rab Russell, who left me to the crap teaching of Mr Sawkins (sorry but it’s true) to drive a Landrover over the Sahara, always was a mad greazy (sic) Millwall fan.  Mr Towey (eccentric) taught me BASIC (a computer programming course with no computer, still it was the seventies there weren’t many about, but the ability to teach me Pure Maths and Statistics was beyond even him. Haggis, what else did he teach other than gym? (whatever it was I was outside because my hair was too long), Benjy Britten, after all that, do you mean, 'I'm not a really good singer' or 'I’m not really a good singer',  'I'm really not a good singer', am I? Bastard!), Tabs, Mr Harris, Jenny Saunders, Mr Schlesinger (told us in the first year the next five years will fly by – how about the next 30 – oh no! soon it will be forty years on – oh shit!!!.)  I will always remember a black pudding, Chippy, Mr Eustace etc.  There must be loads more but I’m now feeling weird and the fog of nostalgia is making it all look so rosy.  Was it Ms Bunting who, describing chewing and the production of chemicals to aid digestion, uttered masturbation instead of mastication, particularly funny to a class of 15 year olds.  Oh no I must stop.  Enjoyed the site loads, anybody who remembers me, hope you’re well. Attached is a photo of prefects (click here to download!) taken on Wednesday 17th May 1978, line up as follows:-

P Sandiford -J Hadfield -A Henshaw –Walmesley- P Barlow -N Waring -A Cuckhill- C Rothwell

J Tasker -Norris -C Pollock -G Bailey -D Ellison -J Libbert -W Jackson -I Cheeseman  -M Greene

Me  -D Brabner- M Brown -R McCowan -G Clarke -M Waring -G Stanley -L Thomas -C Chambers

P Stoll -N Moglia- S Wood- I Thompson- DB Hudson- D Jackson- A Coward-P Hopwood -S Ward

All the Best

Kevin McGowan

Regarding the debate about the TV series, it was NIGHTINGALES'S BOYS, a reunion of the schoolmaster's most promising class, starring Derek Farr, Pauline Yates and John Carson.

Granada Television
Producer: Brian Armstrong

It was filmed in the school hall during a full assembly. Granada has no plans to release it but they do have the STAND episode. The problem was they wanted £260 plus VAT for a copy! (commercial rates I think) – suppose it could be worth it for the next dinner.  It shows a full assembly. I think it was filmed in 1974.


Tom Sweetman

Hi Martyn

Picking up on the comments of Carl Taylor and Ian Levine, the Granada production was definitely a two word title and I think Carl is right in saying the second word was "Angels". First word was a teachers' name but I'm blowed if I can recall it.

Enough of electronic charades ...

Ian mentions Slack as a CS teacher. He is fond in my memory for one reason only, viz. I'm pretty sure he was the principal organiser of those Grand Days Out on the annual marathon hikes around Edale. I can't imagine the education authorities/safety people etc being too pleased if such events happened today with the same staff/pupil ratio!

My CS was drummed into me by BJCJ, who accused me of cheating in the end of year exams when I scored 90%+. It was his own fault for being (I think) the first to introduce multiple choice questions - I was a good guesser but he gave me his standard "500 lines" as a punishment for not taking the exam seriously! He then doubled the punishment each day for 4 or 5 days when I failed to produce them, meaning that I would have ended up with 4000 or 8000 lines to do, of which I'd done precisely 1. At that point, and unknown to me at the time, my parents stepped in and DBH gave BJCJ a rollicking.

How many people recall the RE/RI master we "broke"? Somebody Daniels (not Paul, although he was equally nauseating to look at). He ended up transferring to the Girls' School, where he fairly soon suffered a further nervous breakdown.

Daniels rode a scooter for a while, whilst Shuttleworth had a Honda C70 or C90 and someone else had a more hip Dream (might have been Greg Mountain but he taught Geog and I rather think the owner was a science guy?)

Shuttleworth was back at Cambridge (Corpus) when I was studying (Peterhouse) - he had a years' sabbatical to write a book of some sort. I think that was about the time his marriage went off the rails and, to be sure, he seemed a pretty damn lonely bloke there.

I remember Jenny Saunders well and, yes, she had a great pair of legs. Some used to fancy Helen Orton with her UNE1S-registered MG and seriously Dynasty-flash fashion sense.

Re: the Dave Crook thing: I tried to get help from the Daily Mirror with no success, so next stop will probably be a trawl of a copyright library or something. Came as a surprise to hear that the Mirror apparently does not archies back that far ... but then it is the Mirror!

Simon Tushingham - the website for Sedgley Park Rugby Union F.C, Manchester, UK

Hello Martyn

I've just discovered the site - courtesy of Pete Wilson, who was with me at Stand from 66 - 73. I want to add some of my memories to the letters page, which was very entertaining, I thought. Please also put my email address  on the relevant page: it would be nice to hear from some fellow old boys.

I'm afraid I'm one of those whom Trevor Phillips regards as liking the place. I mostly had a good time there, perhaps because I was sporty. I do remember Haggis, though, and it's good to see he's still going. The big issue during my time there was hair and its length. There were two seminal moments to do with hair that I remember. One was speech night at the Free Trade Hall. We were all told that if we didn't get our hair 'regulation' (not touching collar/not on ears) that we would not be allowed to go up for our O' level certificates. There was going to be a mass protest, but in the end only Dave Whittle and I toughed it out and didn't go up. I've been getting myself into trouble ever since. The other concerns Haggis. When we were in the VII form he said he wouldn't have anything to do with the 1st XI if we didn't get our "'air cut, you 'orrible lot."

He didn't have anything to do with us, until we started winning all our games, that is. Well nearly all: we got a pasting from Xaverian, but then they were all 6ft. 6ins. Tall and looked about 30. Maybe it was his plan to bind together one of the most dismal soccer teams in the history of Manchester schoolboy football. Well, it worked. I only ever put one more foot wrong, though. In my 3rd year I absent-mindedly (honest mi lud) wrote MAN UTD on hairy Heinz's bag while he was doing a latent heat experiment. But he was very good about it. Maybe he was a supporter.

Johnny Hewitt

Dear Martyn

I think we were in the same year at Stand were we not? I saw the website today & think it is fantastic. Thank you to Rob Shimmin for remembering my flatulence habit, it was a pity there were no GCE awards for farting, I would have gone far!!  Gaz Fielding is still a mate (although he is much much wealthier than I), as is Rob Casement & Martin (Titch) Howarth. I was part of the Ragdale set up & only came to Stand in the second year & part of the Parris, Adler, Manville, Joseph etc. class.

It would be good to hear from anyone who remembers those days.

Keep up the good work.

Best regards
Steve Ashworth

Hi Martyn

Please could you add me to your contact  list? I attended SGS from 1976-1981, and have thoroughly enjoyed reviving all my old memories of Haggis and all his contemporaries, even though I hated the school at the time! Didn't do me any harm in the long run, though, and I remember it was great fun when the girls arrived in 1979 (?).

I vaguely remember a geology teacher called Miss McLellan, who always wore a blouse that gaped open at the front to reveal a lacy bra! Never was there so much of a scramble to sit in the front row!

Andy Robinson
Senior Manager, Sales
Eagle Star International Life, Hong Kong

Well, well, well, here's an interesting can of worms. I thought the internet was the future, now I see it's the past.

The contributions I've read appear to fall into two categories: the "It didn't do me any harm" brigade and the ones for whom the school was a Dickensian creation that somehow never made it past proof stage. I'm afraid to say I align myself firmly with the latter. Nevertheless it's a shock and rather saddening to see the demolition photos, especially as I used to live round the corner from the school in Grosvenor Avenue and had no idea the place was due for destruction.

The website certainly stirred a few memories and brought back names I thought and wished I'd forgotten. I was at Stand from 1969 to 1976 in the House that Clive built. God, I can only remember one of my form teachers, the notorious "Benjy" Britten. How naive I must have been not to fully
understand the motives behind his frequent "punishments", the 6-foot-long board ruler administered to the behinds of rows of boys, the hand inserted chillingly but warmly between the buttons of your shirt as he leered bog-eyed at you and chastised you gently for ... well, for anything really. Where was Esther Rantzen when we needed her! Only in retrospect do I understand why he was unconcerned by Mark Wilson's outrageous simulations of masturbation from the front row.

Great pianist, though.

Your website clearly demonstrates the powerful influence a school and teachers can have. Who was Haggis? A PE teacher, that's all, yet "boys" from all over the country can't seem to forget him. He never did me any harm, but then again I was pretty good at sport and my mum did the teas for the footy and cricket teams on a Saturday morning, so he couldn't afford to alienate my parents. He even gave me a school cricket bat, along with the soubriquet "cabbage". No, my retrospective loathing is reserved for a pathetic creep of an art teacher called Baxendale, closely followed by Doc Barnes. The man with the PhD whose path of learning led him to the conclusion that the best form of education involved emotional bullying and physical beatings.

However, not even Stand Grammar could employ a complete staffroom full of twats. I remember some staff with affection:

*       "Chippy" Wood, without whose excellent trips abroad I possibly would never have left these shores.
*       "Ray" Russell, for his A-Level German lessons and treating us like the adults we weren't.
*       John Coghill, who managed to teach me O-Level French in the half a lesson left after he stopped talking about planes.
*       Alan Smith, a most decent bloke, who managed to field Robin Wernick's impertinent questions about his sex life with humour and good grace, and teach us History as well.

I have a fund of half-remembered stories about football matches (losing 15-0 to a load of blokes masquerading as schoolboys from Manchester Grammar; feigning injury during an Under-11's match so that I could sit on the pipes in the dressing room with the other three who'd had the same idea; being stripped of the Under-15's captaincy and made to run round the pitch after another abject defeat, against Bede's probably), lessons (watching Paul Hart release a bucketful of maggots in another immaculately-planned "Toady" Toseland English lesson; giving our names as the entire Man Utd football team to the stand-in RE teacher Whewell) and trips abroad (failing miserably to leave the hotel to go to a strip club in some European country or other; watching in awe as Ged Byrom and others went on the rampage in Holland and ended up in gaol for the night).

Or have I made all of those up? Probably. Probably need a few beers with half-remembered classmates to embellish them even more.

Trevor Stevens

Hello, Martyn.

Thank you for putting this site together.  My name is Darrell Horn and I was a pupil at Stand in Phillips house from around 1973 to 78.  I can send you a jpeg of the school photo from 1975.  It was good to hear the other pupils accounts of  school life and I'll be contributing soon


Darrell Horn

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Author: Martyn Arnold

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