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Newton Church Room Renovation Project


Memories of my School Days by Joyce Powell and John Powell

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When did you go to Newton school?
Joyce went to Newton from 1946-7 to 1951.
John went to Newton from 1950 to 1956

Where did you live and whom did you live with?
We lived with our parents and brother at Upper Newton.

Who was your teacher?
Mrs. Price Nee Smith, Head teacher was Mr. Bosley later Mrs. Van Caille
Joyce is still in touch with Mr.& Mrs. Bosley & family.

How did you go to school?
We always walked to school, the only car we ever saw was Eddie Smith that passed us.

What did you do through your school day?
If it was raining we took our socks off and dried them a round the fire. Joyce enjoyed school and remembers chanting the times table and spellings, sewing a sample of stitches. Also drawing and painting flowers which I took from the garden at home. We had the dentist in a big van come every 12months and the library van with loads of books. As a child Joyce was a avid reader. Joyce and John used to like Rupert Bear. Both were punished with a rap over the knuckles or a bean bag thrown at them. At play time we use to play in the field, football for the boys and skipping, ball games, making tracks out of grass and moss. The windows were too high so we could not see what went on out side. The attendance officer was Mr. Norton. The nit nurse use to come every few months. At Christmas we had a big tree in the main room with real candles on, with our presents underneath. At play time if it was wet we were not allowed on the muddy patch in the yard. We had great slides in the winter. Joyce remembers walking on top of the hedges in 1947 with Jeff going to school. We dawdled home and Joyce was reported for pushing a girl in the brambles, but she was picking on her little brother.

What did you have for lunch?
We had school dinners which were thick stews, sausage and bacon and vegetables, for puddings apple dumplings and tapioca (frog spawn) We had free milk and water from the pump. They don't remember being taught any food hygiene. If the dinner van did not come we had the iron rations which was ryvita and corn beef.

What did you wear to school?
No uniform, a pinafore dress and jumper with navy blue knickers with a pocket in for your handkerchief also thick stockings and heavy shoes. The boys wore short trousers and a jacket with knee length socks and a cap.

Did you have any jobs before or after school?
Joyce doesn't remember doing any jobs but John thought he use to hoe mangles before and after school.

Can you remember any local event or any thing else about your school days?
For the Coronation celebrations they had a big bonfire in Mr. Jim Prices field with fireworks, before he could light the fire he had to put the ferrets in to clear it of rabbits. There was a annual Eisteddfod which we both recited in and Joyce use to play the piano. John got told off for taking herb beer to school the teacher thought it was really beer and one of the teachers came to see mother about it. We had a German prisoner of war staying at Newton called big John he use to send parcels home to his family, also two land girls. Joyce's mother transferred Joyce to St Michaels in Hereford when she was 10 years, she went on to Grammar school and took her A levels. John went to Fairfield but due to accident he left school at fourteen and went home to work for his Father.

Newton Eisteddfod 1950 – The Choir

Back row: Marjorie Reynolds (twin), Masie Wall, Kathleen Pritchard, Percy Price,
Bernard Jones, Marion Lewis, Pamala Lewis, Rosmary Reynolds (twin)
Front row: May Powell, Joan Williams, Dapne Lewis. Jean Francis,
Dorothy Powell (with Trophy), Bessie Hankins, Fay Shaw, Sylvia Jenkins



This contribution from Joyce Powell; maiden name Powell, and John Powell, interviewed by Joan Davies and Mary Powell, January 2003

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Ref: gc_nwt_2022