School uniform in our day was a matter of pride. I don't know about anybody
else but being a part of St Georges and wearing the uniform was the thing I was
looking forward to when I was a pupil in Birket.
My brother had already been
there two years when I arrived, complete with cap and gabardine raincoat ( a
what I here you say). All first years were given a cap, it was part of the
uniform and you had to wear it and you had to wear short grey trousers.
arriving home after school how many of us were greeted by our mothers, saying
"take that uniform off and fold it neatly for tomorrow". In those austere days
especially with the large families of the time the expenditure on school clothes
was enormous, so you had to look after them. I always wore grey shirts my mother
used to take all the stitching out of the worn out collars and turn them the
other way to make them look new. Don't get me wrong I never did look like a
scruff but it was the fifties after all.
I have never felt comfortable wearing
headgear of any description and I knew for a fact that I looked a twonk in a hat
,I still do. As all you ex pupils knew we had prefects on the gate they were
there to check on your tardiness and make a report also to check on your
uniform, which brings me to the nub of my story.
My brother Dennis as I have
said was two years ahead of me in school, bearing in mind this was the age of
the TED, I mean the TEDDY BOY, my brother during his last weeks tenure at St
Georges, purchased some very colourful and trendy clothes.
This ensemble it must
be said was for out of school wear only. During his very last week of education,
before saying goodbye to arguably the best years of his life. he decided to wear
this out fit to school. My mother was horrified, "don't do it " she bleated, to
no avail, this dedicated follower of fashion strode to school, to the
astonishment of his peers ,dressed in Leather bikers jacket,grey striped
drainpipe trousers. red shirt, white tie and the largest pair of crepe soled
brothel creepers you have ever seen in you life, complete with silver buckles.
He arrived at the school gate , and by the way the hair was done , with
Brylcreem into a DA (ducks arse) at the back and a kiss curl quiff at the front,
what a sight.
The Prefects agreed and told him they did not care one jot that it
was his last week in school. He had to go home and come back looking like a St
Georges pupil, these standards made St Georges into a great school led by a
great Headmaster Leslie Bradshaw.
May his name live on with the creation of the
St Georges Website. He made this school his own and we are all better people for
being educated there.
Derek Hardy - June 2005