The Logbook of Lyndhurst School North End, Portsmouth 1920-1955

By Tim Lambert

12/1/1920 Lyndhurst Girls School was opened this morning with an attendance of 236 girls drawn from Drayton Rd, Copnor, St Albans, and George St Schools

4/2/1920 Have tried to organise staff for the better teaching of singing and dancing

13/2/1920 Stormy weather prevails and much rain has caused many colds and 20 girls are sick

21/5/1920 Empire Celebrations

16/9/1920 A terrible morning 20 girls absent owing to the weather

12/11/1920 Prize giving by Mr J S Chivers. 166 prizes were awarded.

6/7/1921 School closed for Temperance Demonstration

4/11/1921 A notice has been received from the Office stating that Mr. A Jolliffe will visit the school at 11 am on 9 November for the purpose of giving a lecture to scholars in standards 5, 6 and 7 on the physiological effects of alcohol

11/11/1921 Armistice Day celebrated. Sale of poppies for Lord Douglas Haighs appeal for ex servicemen raised 4 pounds

22/12/1921 Deviations from timetable to allow of some natural enjoyment on Xmas closing day

7/4/1922 Class 5 is a great mixture of old and rather backward children, some are backward through ill health, some are mentally backward, some have attended poor public schools

12/6/1922 Distributed certificates earned by girls who wrote the essay on alcohol

20/6/1922 Leave has been granted to hold sports on North End Recreation Ground using the games period from 3-4 pm

1/6/1923 Empire Day kept in School Assembly and short service in hall

6/6/1923 The school dentist examined 261 children

14/6/1923 Notice received to send a class to Cookery Centre Drayton Rd School on 5 July

4/7/1923 All schools closed – Annual Temperance demonstration

1/2/1924 Formal opening of school library

4/7/1924On 2 July 54 girls and staff spent a very happy and profitable day at Wembley, Canada, Australia, India, Hong Kong, West Africa, HM Govt buildings, the Palace of Industry, and the Dollhouse were all visited

17/10/1924 The Naval War Memorial (On Southsea Common) was unveiled on Wednesday by HRH the Duke of York. This caused a drop in attendance all day.

17/3/1925 HM Inspector of Physical Exercises visited and saw drill in the playground. She expressed satisfaction at the result obtained.

18/5/1925 New piano placed in school

19/5/1925 20 senior girls with Miss Brady visited the Mothercraft Exhibition at the Royal Naval Welfare Centre Flathouse Road from 11 to 12 am

24/3/1927 Cleanliness inspections

13/6/1927 1 case of scarlet fever and 2 of diphtheria involving the absence of 6 children

In the days before the NHS and antibiotics, disease was common in Portsmouth schools. Lyndhurst school was no exception

13/7/1927 New cookery class started in the afternoon

13/11/1928 Demonstration to standards 5 to 7 of the uses of the extra accessories of the sewing machine by an assistant belonging to Singers company during the needlework session

15/4/1929 Miss Webber away with German measles

11/11/1929 Remembrance Day two minutes silence observed and short address given by the head teacher

21/1/1930 Standards 7 to 8 gathered in the hall to listen to the broadcasting from the Naval Conference

20/5/1930 5 girls taken to the Zoo + Lyons factory by the Lord Mayors Joy Day Fund. Counted as an educational visit.

23/6/1930 48 girls went to Southampton to see over the Homeric, being a treat given by the Lord Mayor out of the Joy Day Fund

24/6/1930 87 girls visited Portchester Castle in the afternoon as an educational visit (history + architecture)

27/6/1930 10 girls visited Hendon to see the RAF display

27/7/1930 Standards 7 + 6 left at 11.30 am in order to attend the Naval Tattoo at Whale Island

21/8/1930 Party of 13 girls visited Frys factory in Bristol with Miss Stroud

17/9/1931 15 girls took part in a joy day organised by the Lord Mayor and visited Frys Chocolate Factory Bristol

9/10/1931 A nurse attended from the clinic for cleanliness inspection

24/5/1931 Empire Day – Short talks given to the scholars. Appropriate songs + hymns sung and the prayer for Empire Day taken at Assembly.

20/10/1932 43 girls attended the performance of The Tempest at South Parade Pier

16/11/1932 8 girls attended a lecture on astronomy at the Municipal College

25/1/1933 8 girls left school at 2.55 pm in order to attend a lecture given at the Municipal College. The subject of the lecture being ‘Camouflage in Nature’.

28/2/1933 8 girls left school at 2.50 pm to attend a lecture on wireless at the Municipal College

29/8/1933 School reopened as a Junior Girls School girls being transferred from Drayton Rd, Copnor Rd and St Albans schools

4/7/1934 School was closed on account of the Annual Temperance Demonstration

6/5/1935 School closed – Silver Jubilee of his Majesty King George V

16/7/1935 School closed for the day – Naval Review

20/9/1935 Dr Smith examined 50 girls today (nutrition survey)

28/1/1936 School closed Day of National Mourning for his majesty King George V

22/4/1936 School closed at 4 pm permission being granted by Education Committee on account of schools football match

13/7/1936 School closed. Temperance demonstration.

11/5/1937 Councillor Fookes visited us this morning in order to present the souvenir beakers and sixpences given by the Lord Mayor to Commemorate the Coronation

7/2/1938 3 cases of scarlet fever have occurred in one class since 2 Feb. Have notified the clinic and asked for a medical inspection

8/2/1938 Another case of ‘scarlet’ was notified this morning. Dr. McLachlan on the Infectious Diseases Hospital visited the school and examined the girls in the infected class. 3 girls were selected to have throat swabs taken. They were sent home with instructions to parents.

18/2/1938 Dr. McLachlan visited the school again this morning and examined the throats of girls in form 3a as 4 more cases of scarlet fever had been notified this week

31/3/1938 Dr Mounsey examined 34 girls this morning to form a swimming class. 33 were fit.

6/4/1938 A swimming class began instruction at 3.15 at St Marys Road baths

18/5/1938 Forms 4a and 3a attended the musical festival at the Guildhall

23/6/1938 Mrs. Lake a representative of the Dental Board gave a lecture on ‘teeth to the 3 upper forms

30/9/1938 Air raid practice took place this morning. The girls were assembled in their outdoor clothes and dismissed to their homes. The school was cleared in just over 3 minutes including time for dressing and assembly. The longest time taken to reach home was 10 minutes.

29/3/1939 Dr Woodrow inoculated the girls due for a second injection against diphtheria

26/7/1939 The timetable was suspended from 11.12 am and an Empire Pageant was presented in the hall

26/8/1939 School was closed for instructional purposes today. The headteachers and members of the staff employed on evacuation work.

27/8/1939 Staff on duty today (Sunday) to deal with preparations for evacuation. Parents and children came to school for advice.

28/8/1939 Children wishing to be evacuated attended school this morning fully equipped with clothing, food, and a gas mask. A rehearsal of evacuation arrangements took place in school and in the playground.

31/8/1939 Evacuation has been ordered for tomorrow 1 Sept. Buses are timed to leave the school at 3pm. Scholars have been told to arrive punctually by 2pm

Portsmouth was bombed in 1940-41. Lyndhurst School escaped serious damage but some people living nearby were less lucky. On 11 July 1940, a bomb hit 12 Lyndhurst Road

21/10/1940 The girls dept of Lyndhurst Road Council School was reopened this morning

28/10/1940 Numbers increase as the reopening becomes known. Morning 38 afternoon 37.

22/11/1940 Children went to shelter at 11 and remained till 11.25 also from 3.40-55

4/12/1940 Children have today been in the shelter from 2.15 to 3.40 with a few minutes ‘break’. Gunfire made it necessary to return to cover.

5/12/1940 Children have spent 10 minutes in the shelter today

10/12/1940 Application has been made for furniture for children’s use in the shelter

11 December 1940 a bomb fell on 31 Locarno Road

24/1/1941 A meeting was called for all heads of schools at the Northern Secondary to discuss the possibilities of the fire watching duty to be shared by the staffs of all schools

28/1/1941 Children were immunised against diphtheria

11/2/1941 Inspection of gas masks was made throughout this school

11/3/1941 Owing to a very bad raid during the night the attendance was very low this morning

21/3/1941 Members of the staff have been released from their classes as often as possible in order to canvass the school district for billets for homeless in an emergency

9/4/1941 Attendance low on account of a very bad air raid in the district (8 April 1941 81 Kirby Road, 94-98 Mayfield Road and 109 Ophir Road were all hit by bombs)

25/4/1941 During the week – 19 new entries, 22 left district – 1 girl killed by enemy action

On 27 April 1941 78 Laburnum Grove was hit

28/4/1941 Very bad air raid last night. School district very much affected. Attendance low. During the day a number of unexploded bombs were found in the district. The inhabitants of many roads had to evacuate their homes for safety. Many children were taken to the country or to friends in other parts of the city.

11 May 1941 a bomb fell on 61 Locarno Road

9/6/1941 Permission given to hold ‘open’ periods during this week to interest parents and children in giving and saving for Special War Weapons from June 29

10/6/1941 Parents visited school from 2-3 pm. Posters and slogans done by upper girls in art lessons were exhibited and dramatic performances were given by upper girls and singing games by infants.

21/7/1941 Air raid warden attended school to check gas masks

20/11/1941 Girls weighed and heights taken to ascertain who qualify for extra clothing coupons.

4/12/1941 Queen Elizabeth inspected the Lyndhurst Road first aid post at 3 pm. At 2.50 the children were lined up on the pavement in Crofton Rd to see her arrive and depart.

8/12/1941 Miss Carnell reported for duty in this dept. Special consideration was given to her as she has been absent from school for 17 months having suffered severe injuries during the bombing of a first-aid post in July 1941

28/11/1941 Lord Mayor + Lady Mayoress visited the school. Presentation of 3 pounds 5 shillings to Mayoress for the tank fund.

5/1/1942 New air raid shelter finished in the girl’s playground and all air raid accommodation increased 10% – thus making 2220 in the girl’s playground and 165 in the boys. Miss Gelding from the first aid post is beginning a series of practical first aid lessons with the senior girls.

13/1/1942 Domestic subjects training began today for 20 girls who will be 14 by end of the summer term. The girls attend all day Tuesday at Drayton Road

20/1/1942 School opened at 9.30 am. This time to continue during January as school is not blacked out and fires cannot be lit until after 8.30 am. A party was given for children who had lost near relatives or homes by enemy action. 12 girls from this dept went. Nurse continued medical inspection. 3 girls were excluded (suspected of having scabies).

26/1/1942 All but one of the scabies suspects were certified as clear and allowed to return to school

13/3/1942 2 pounds 2 shillings sent to red cross fund. Voluntary contributions since Xmas from the children.

24/4/1942 Air raid warning with gunfire on Tues

5/5/1942 2 air raid alerts during night with heavy gunfire

15/5/1942 Approval given for strengthening northern cloakroom on ground for extra air raid accommodation

19/6/1942 Heavy gunfire was heard before a warning was sounded. The lower school assembled in the corridor and sat by the walls. The upper school after sheltering under desks took up positions on the stairs. When the gunfire ceased for a time the children were hurried into playground shelters.

1/7/1942 Measles and chickenpox still prevalent amongst young children

26/11/1942 American Thanksgiving Day. Senior and upper juniors assembled in the Hall to hear the broadcast at 2.40 and to sing American National Anthem.

23/12/1942 A supply of chocolate for each child to have one bar was received from the Optimist International Club, Toronto Canada

11/1/1943 New air raid shelter for 100 was completed making accommodation for 450 between boys, girls and infants depts

12/2/1943 Sweets received from America were distributed to the girls this afternoon

On 18 June 1943 90 Randolph Road was hit

28/5/1943 Whole school, boys, girls, and infants assembled in the Hall and sang national songs preliminary to wings for victory week

4/6/1943 Result of wings for victory – whole school raised 95 pounds 11 shillings and 2 pence

11/6/1943 Staff began supervision duty at Drayton Road dinner centre

3/9/1943 National Day or Prayer observed

10/9/1943 School closed this afternoon in celebration of good news concerning Italy (Italy surrendered to the allies on 8 September 1943)

23/4/1945 St Georges Day Girls and Boys depts joined for singing in the playground

8/8/1945 VE declared by 9 o’clock news on Monday 7th May. Holiday from school.

9/5/1945 VE + 1 holiday

10/5/1945 Boys + girls depts assembled for thanksgiving service from 9 – 9.40 am. Boys and girls assembled for singing national songs 3.15 – 4 pm.

After the Second World War life slowly returned to normal in Portsmouth and Lyndhurst School although rationing continued for a long time.

1/6/1946 Victory festivities held at Drayton Rd School

17/6/1946 School became Junior Mixed and Infants

29/1/1947 Lavatories + water pipes frozen – school continued till 11.15 then dismissed

30/1/1947 Heavy falls of snow. 36 children came at 9 am dismissed at 11 am after each child had 2 bottles of milk. Dinners served at 12 o’clock.

3/2/1947 Thaw during the weekend. Northern end of the building flooded – impossible to use it. Children given milk and sent home for rest of the day. (Children were given free milk to drink at school) Meals served at 12 o’clock.

20/11/1947 School closed today for wedding of Princess Elizabeth (The present Queen Elizabeth)

21/4/1948 Collection in school today for Save the Children fund sent 8 pounds 5 shillings to bank

1/2/1949 Form 4 took part in Physical Training Display at Drayton Rd School

19/1/1951 Attendance very low owing to influenza

1/2/1952 Attendance very low owing to the young children suffering from severe colds. 10 children sent home by the Dr as unfit to attend school.

24/6/1952 A party of 20 4A boys visited British Railway works at Eastleigh

15/12/1952 Infants dept entertainment in the morning conjuror + Punch + Judy show

16/12/1952 Entertainment repeated for Junior Dept

6/5/1953 Form 4A attended Royal Naval barracks for audition in folk dancing

5/6/1953 Coronation Souvenirs presented to children of Junior Mixed Dept by Councillor Clarke and to the Infants by Miss E Haskell. 30 children attended a thanksgiving at St Mary’s Church.

11/6/1953 120 children left the school at 1.30 by bus for the Hard. Boarded a launch in order to view the ships assembled at Spithead for the naval review.

17/7/1953 Attendance very low in infants dept owing to chickenpox and scarlet fever

22/10/1953 Station officer Brunner visited the school and carried out fire drill

28/1/1954 Owing to severe weather no toilets able to be used – school closed

9/11/1954 Organiser for physical education visited the infant’s dept and saw the work of the 4 classes

13/1/1955 School meals organiser called to inspect the new kitchen fitted up in hut no. 1

By kind permission of Portsmouth Museums & Records Service, Portsmouth City Council

The reference number for this logbook is DS/25/2/A/1