Comments

Posted on behalf of Mr Frank Randall, published in the Nottingham Post 2010.

I have been connected with the Porchester area for more than 40 years and my wife and I have lived here for over 30.

We met while teaching at the Porchester Junior School and recently celebrated our 42nd wedding anniversary.

I taught at Porchester for over 20 years, retiring in 1995. I still live nearby and I still meet students who I taught; some of them now in their fifties.

With a history of 104 years, there is a lot that can be written about the Porchester Junior School.

But of all the people connected with the school in that time, I am sure that the most outstanding was Miss Milner.

Wyn Milner, as she was known to the staff, must have been born in Burton Joyce, just before the Great War.

She trained as a teacher in Lincoln and some time round about 1933 came to Carlton and taught for a year at the newly opened Parkdale school. She then moved to Porchester school and there she remained for the next 40 or so years.

Wyn was a spinster. In the 1930s, every female teacher was a spinster. If they married, they got the sack. Only with the coming of the Second World War were married women allowed to teach.

The parents were all very much in favour of Miss Milner and her stern demeanour. Their kids behaved when they were in her class. She did not cane them. She did not shout at them. But when she raised one eye-brow, they listened and learned.

As a result, in due time, Wyn became the deputy head and was put in charge of class 4A.

In those days, there was "The Scholarship", or 11-plus to use a later term. The children were divided into A and B streams. The A stream was for those who were regarded as more intelligent.


Those in the A stream were drilled in grammar, spelling, writing proper sentences, learning their tables and doing hard sums, particularly long division.

Those successful, passed on to a Grammar School. Wyn acquired the reputation of getting kids through these exams, even the border-line cases.

In retrospect, it seems an unfair system. But that was the system there and any teacher can only try to work with the system as it is. It did give Porchester the reputation of a good school and that good reputation remained long after Wyn Milner had retired and the 11-plus had vanished into the dustbin of history.

In the staff room, Wyn was a character. She suffered some unspecified heart complaint and felt the cold. So with all the privileges of seniority, she claimed the space by the gas fire. There she drank weak tea and methodically completed the Daily Telegraph crossword.

I remember many teachers at Porchester and the help and support that I received. But Wyn was an especially kind and considerate colleague.

With her dislike of the cold, she always said she hoped to be cremated and would have been delighted when this did eventually take place: the date was November 5. How surprised her former pupils would have been to learn that she had such an lively sense of humour.

FRANK RANDALL

June 26, 2010

i attended the School in the mid - late fifties. Teachers - Miss Wyld, Mr Harrison [ BRILLIANT sports teacher ], Mrs Godfrey who was quite strict but only prepared you for, - Miss Milner who was the strictest teacher EVER. Mind you she had to be, - there were 40 + kids in the class. Never once, was there dis-order or any mis-behavior. i remember learning times-tables parrot fashion, repeating them time and time and time and time again. i remember learning that chocolate came from Africa [ what a strange thing to remember ]. i remember the outside toilets on a literally freezing January day. Lots of other vivid memories too. 'am still in touch with Robert McGann, known as 'Ganny' at P.J.S. Also remember quite a few names as we were all together for about 6 years. Pam Lee, Pam Buxton, Angela Ward, Angela Wade, Irene Handley, Diane Bailey,Anne Whitehead, Christine Spurr, Rosemary Brown, Susan Butler, Christine Woods, Dorothy Oxenford, Sandra Harrison, John Hurd, David Philbin, Andrew Davis, David Best, Jim Tubb, Geoff Cooper, Trevor Jones, Anthony ?, John Ludlow, Chris Marwood, Roy Allen, Darren James.
Blimey !! i can't even remember what day it is now, so where did all those names come from ? Oh just remembered Mr Wright the chain smoking Headmaster.
Remember playing football on 'Bachus' with Richard and Roger Poole, Keith Green etc. YES, very happy days, - where have all the years gone.

I attended PJS from 1955-59 Loved it there.Teachers remembered Miss Milner, Mrs Godfrey, Mr Harrison, Miss Wild... Miss Milner on her high desk rolling chalk thro her hands;old school desks with ink wells plus pens with nibs.Penmanship lessons from blackboard.Reading Black Beauty.Reciting poetry by heart -Pied Piper of Hamlyn. Times tables. My elder brother and sister, father,aunts and uncles also attended.
Fellow friends - Sue Butler, John & Betty Earl,April Middleton, John Ludlow, Jims Tubbs,Trevor Penson,Sandra Harrison,and many more if I really start to think. Congratulations on your 100 years and I would love to come to your reunion.

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