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THE

AYMESTREY

MAGAZINE

AUTUMN 1977
MINUTES OF THE ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
OF THE OLD AYMESTREY ASSOCIATION

HELD AT AYMESTREY SCHOOL ON SATURDAY, 18th JUNE, 1977

Present : The President. John Hughes; The Chairman, John Phipps; and 30 members.
1 . Apologies : were received from Messrs. Alan Aitken, David Banks, Nigel Blair-Oliphant, Nicholas
Bomford, Richard and Bill Collins, Edward Carpenter, Robert Gerard, Geoffrey Howell,
Richard Hughes, J. F. D. MacClaren. Alan Masters, Brian Massey, Ian Routh, Christopher
Samwells, Eric Serjeantson, John Shew, A. G. M. Slatter, Dr. Robert Scholefield, D. R. Thomas,
Richard Tildesley and Lieutenant Colonel Tony Claydon.

2. The Minutes of the A.G.M. held on the 12th June 1976, having been circulated in the School
Magazine, were taken as read, were approved with the addition of a reference to the approval of
the 1976 accounts and were signed by the Chairman.

3. The Accounts for the year ended 31st March 1977, were received and adopted.

4. The following Officers were elected for the ensuing year:--


CHAIRMAN : John Coley.
VICE-CHAIRMAN : Nigel Blair-Oliphant.
HONORARY SECRETARY/TREASURER : Bill Stallard.
SCHOOL CORRESPONDENT : Dan Asterley.
COMMITTEE : Andrew Duncan and Edward Carpenter, to serve with Messrs. John Coley,
Francis Tuthill, Richard Tildesley and Edward Weaving.

5. The Asterley Appeal. The Secretary submitted a Report upon the deliberations of the Appeal
Sub-Committee and the President presented to the meeting a draft of the proposed letter
launching the Appeal. This was approved and it was resolved to launch the Appeal forthwith.

6. Any Other Business. The Secretary circulated a list of members for whom the Association has no
address. It was suggested by Charles Massey that such a list be inserted in the next school magazine.
The meeting noted with regret the death of Con Waddington.

7. THE CHAIRMAN, John Phipps, proposed a vote of thanks to Hugh and Gill Griffith and their
staff for the kind hospitality extended to Members and this was heartily endorsed by the Meeting.
The Association's Annual Dinner was again held at the Union and County Club in Worcester and
the Committee was particularly pleased by the excellent support, which added considerably
to the enjoyment of the evening.
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O L D AY M E S T R E Y A S S O C I AT I O N
Income and Expenditure Account for the Year ended 31st March, 1977
INCOME EXPENDITURE
f p f p
Membership Subscriptions ... ... ... 4 6 - 2 0 Geoffrey Hopcraft — photographs and frame 15-30
Magazine Appeal Subscription ... ...... 6-05 Lloyds Bank Limited — Bank charges ... -62
Interest on Lloyds Bank Ltd. deposit account 8 - 54 Inland Revenue — Corporation Tax ... 5-49
Interest on Abbey National Building Society Wreaths ... ... 7 - 95
deposit account ... ... ... 21 - 35 Balance in hand being excess of income over
expenditure ... ... ... ... 52-78

82-14 82-14
Balance Sheet for the Year

ended 31st March, 1977


p p
Balance brought forward from 31st March, Balances at Lloyds Bank Limited :-
1976 ... ... ... ... ... ... 437 - 0 2 Current account ... ... ... ... 24-81
Excess of income over expenditure for the year 52 -78 Deposit account ... ... ... ... 104-54
Balance on Abbey National Building Society
deposit account ... ... ... ... 360-45
489- 80 489-80

3
T H E O L D A Y M E S T R E Y A S S O C I A T I O N

" Ly n c ro f t , "
80, Greenhill,
Evesham,
Worcestershire.

Dear Members,
The Asterley Appeal
The Appeal Committee wishes to place on record its deep appreciation of the generous response to
this Appeal.
You must forgive us for not acknowledging individually each donation and the many interesting
and encouraging letters sent to me, in the interests of keeping overheads to a minimum, but all were
gratefully received.
You will find in this issue of the Magazine a list of those members with whom the Secretary has lost
contact. We would ask you to write to W. B. Stallard at 3, Pierpoint Street, Worcester, if you can
help in bringing his address book up to date, for no doubt many on this list would wish to
contribute to the Appeal.
The School is holding a Fete on July 2nd and the proceeds will go towards this Appeal. All
members of the Association and their families, past and present parents and friends are cordially
invited. Any offers of prizes and/or produce will be especially welcome.
The Appeal Fund now stands at £3,250. I renew my thanks to all those who have contributed so
generously and would remind those from whom we have yet to bear that the Appeal remains open.

Yours sincerely,
JOHN B. HUGHES,
Chairman, Asterley Appeal Fund.

OLD AYMESTREY ASSOCIATION


MEMBERS WHOSE ADDRESSES ARE MISSING
C. Billingham. Dr. P. H. Birks
L. H. Biggs S. M. Andrews
D B. M. Board N. Butters
D.J. Barnard J. H. Blundell
D. E. Clarke J. M. A. Newcombe
Dr. P. R. M. Connor G. F. D. Ellerton
E.D. S. Ellis A. J. French
D. J. French D. Shelton
P. Goodwin D. G. Powell
Capt. F. L. Hall R. J. S. Powell
N. J. Hall M. G. Pullen
M.F. Heath C. G. Rogers
L. G. Hearson R. H. G. Seaman
Major R. G. R. Hill Dr. P. K. Sylvester
E. J. Lower R. I. C. Turner
P. Longley E. J. Underwood
W. V. Machin P. Veriere
G. W. Marriott J. M. Webb
R. P. Mitchell R. N. Williams
T. B. and R. S. Miles R. C. H. Wells
N. A. Livingstone-Bussell

L E AV E R S A N D N E W B O Y S

LEAVERS
December
C G. A. Thomas (Christ College, Brecon) — Came April 1971. Prefect; Rugger XV; Pentathlon
White Badge; Choir.
R. J. Redmayne (Dandle) — Came September 1976. Rugger XV.
July
R. D. Brandram-Jones (Malvern) — Came September 1972. Choir.
R. J. Edmonds (King's, Worcester) — Came May 1974. Rugger XV; Cricket XI; Soccer XI; Patrol
Leader.
S. R. Green-Price (Gordonstoun) — Came September 1972. Prefect; Captain
Soccer XI and Cricket XI; Rugger XV; Colours for Soccer, Cricket; Gym;
Shooting; Athletics. Shooting Cup; All-Rounder Shield. Patrol Leader;
Choir.
R. M. Jefferson-Brown (Malvern) — Came January 1975. Prefect; Rugger XV; Soccer XI.
A. MacLaren, Music Scholarship (King's, Worcester) — Came September 1972. Rugger XV; Choir.
R. M. Manning (Wycliffe) — Came September 1972. Prefect; Rugger XV; Patrol Leader.
A. P. Moore (Gordon's Boys' School) — Came April 1972. Cricket XI and Colours; Choir.
M. C Packman (Tettenhall College) — Came January 1972. Choir.
A. B. Simpson (Belmont Abbey) — Came September 1974. Rugger XV; Athletics Colours; Choir.
R. I. G. Tyler (Bishop Perowne) — Came January 1972. Rugger XV; Cricket XI; Soccer XI; Pentathlon
White Badge; Patrol Leader.
G. E. J. S. Wallace (Malvern) — Came January 1972. Rugger XV; Cricket XI and Colours; Soccer XI;
Colours for Gym and Athletics.

NEW BOYS

September — R. J. Evans, D. I. K. Blair-Oliphant, R. E. Edmonds, D. S. Jones,


S. Palmer, N. J. Pulfer, C. M. C. Rawlings, R. J. Redmayne, S. J. Schilizzi.
January — D. Searle.
April — R. W. Carpenter, M. J. Fox, W. J. Lane, J. Long, R. Turner.

OLD BOY NEWS


Wing Cdr. P. D. Stokes is commanding the R.A.F.'s engineering wing at Brize Norton. He still
plays squash for the R.A.F. and we understand that he has made more international appearances than
any other British player.
His brother, Fl. Lieut. M. J. Stokes, is flying instructor with Belfast University Air Squadron.
Lieut. Col. A. V. Claydon, R.A., has been working at Lancaster University with a Defence
Fellowship which he was awarded two years ago.
C. N. Todd has a daughter, born last October.
P. M. A. Ashwell also has a daughter, born at almost the same time.
G. and H. Tuthill both have sons, born within a few days of each other in July.
M. P. Aldersey was married in June to Miss Jane Anstey.
M. J. Hughes took a 2nd Class (1) in gaining his B.Sc. in Agriculture at London University.
W. J. Lead got his Rugger Colours last season at Allhallows.
P. M. Martineau is a College Prefect at Cheltenham. He has four A levels, two A's, a B and a C.
Played rugger for the XV, indulges in every conceivable form of musical activity, and is learning
Spanish. He has won an Organ Scholarship to Lincoln College, Oxford.
5

J. C. Davies is in the Lower Sixth at Merchant Taylors' after getting eight O levels. He
was in the Colts XI for hockey.
A. J. Powell is in charge of the Battlefield of Bosworth Project set up by the
Leicestershire County Council, which is a scheme to make this historic site more interesting
and available to the public.
N. W. Blake is Head Chef of the Grill Restaurant at the Grand Hotel in Jersey, after
passing various exams and working at the Dorchester and in Switzerland. He is married and
has a daughter, and is still keen on fishing.
S. C. M. Blake is working with the family building firm, and is a retained fireman.
D. Knox is at the Hatfield Polytechnic, working for a degree in Humanities.
J. J. A. Hughes was in the under 14 and under 15 XVs at Lucton.
A. Masters has left Rendcomb with 6 'O' levels and is doing 3 'A' levels at Hereford Vlth
Form College. He plays Fly-half for the College and Full back for Hereford.
M. C. L. Harris is now a senior member of the National Youth Orchestra and was on view
on TV playing at the Albert Hall as well as performing at the Three Choirs and the
Edinburgh Festival. He is in his final year at Cambridge.
N. R. P. Harris has left Shrewsbury with 3 'A' levels at A grade and two special papers in
both of which he scored I's. He is going to St. John's College, Oxford.
M. Rosoman is still at University and his brother Richard has left Wrekin to take up catering.

MRS. J. E. ST. JOHN MILDMAY


Those connected with the School in the years just before and during the Second World
War will have heard with great sadness of the death of Joan Mildmay last December.
Michael and she came to Aymestrey in September 1933 shortly after their wedding, and
the death of M.N.A. in 1935 brought them early into the position of Senior Partners. No one
could have filled the role of Headmaster's wife with a finer blend of grace and charm,
dignity and humour; and the constant enquiries from old boys and their parents ever
since bear witness to the loss which the School suffered when ill health led to her retirement
in 1948. Those years had been a great period in Aymestrey's history, and much of that
greatness was owed to her.

GIFTS
We are very grateful to the following for their presents to the School :-
Wing Commander and Mrs. Packman -- Subscription for The National Geographical
Magazine.
Mr. and Mrs. Green-Price,
Mr. and Mrs. Jefferson-Brown,
Mr. and Mrs. Simpson, and
Mr. and Mrs. Manning - for generous cheques. Details of how these are spent will appear
in the next magazine.
Mr. and Mrs. Tyler — Music Stands and much help with the Assault Course.
Mr. and Mrs. Edmonds — Hop Poles for the Assault Course.
Mr. and Mrs. Hamer — A Telegraph Pole for the Assault Course.
Mr. and Mrs. Trow — Large Drain Pipes for the Assault Course.
Mr. and Mrs. Moore — for a Cricket Shield.
Mr. and Mrs. Tainton — A cheque for Sports Equipment.
Mr. and Mrs. Redmayne — a pair of Binoculars.
Mr. and Mrs. Thomas — a Wheelbarrow.
Mr. and Mrs. Fox — a Trailer for the Wood Patrol.
Mr. and Mrs. Godsall for Potatoes for November 5th.
Many parents and friends for fruit and vegetables.
Mr. and Mrs. Brandram-Jones for the most generous offer to finance a printing press.
Mrs. Evans — A building game for the junior play-room.
6

MUSIC
Congratulations to Maclaren A. on his Music Exhibition to King's, Worcester. During the year the
following Associated Board grades were passed :-
Tyler, R. — V Trumpet
Maclaren, A. — V Trombone Coley — IV Trumpet
Kimpton — IV Trumpet
Edwards — III Trumpet (Merit)
Blair-Oliphant, R. — III Trumpet
Ratcliffe — III Flute
Partridge — I Piano
The Brinton Prize for 1977 was not awarded.
The Kingston Prize was shared between S. D. G. Partridge and C. J. Ratcliffe for improvement in
Music.

ASSAULT COURSE
When the gales of January 1976 blew down a large tree across the smallest lake the idea of using it
as an obstacle in an Assault Course was born. Sergeant Major Matterface, who is in charge of the
Army Youth Team at Malvern, was consulted and he came over and gave us much valuable advice
and practical help. Thanks to him, and a gift of heavy rope we now have a Burma Bridge, two
rope climbs and a Postman's Walk. He built us a wall out of Railway sleepers that we had been
carefully hoarding for some years. The boys dug a tunnel lined with Mr. Trow's large drain pipes
and several other obstacles are planned.

RUGGER
The XV was better than we expected. and at their best they played beautifully, but they had one bad
patch, and the season ended unsatisfactorily, illness and frost depriving us of the last four matches.
The most exciting match was against Winterfold at home. They had two backs stones heavier
than any of ours, and our task was to stop or spoil their possession; and this our pack did, drive
and skill overcoming weight. Our backs could not break through, but Green-Price kicked shrewdly
to cash in on forward superiority. Ten-man rugby, but skillfully done, and there was plenty of
scoring. After the sides had been level at 4-4, 8-8, 12-12, each in turn taking the lead, Winterfold
went ahead 12-18 with four minutes left. But we got another try, declined the kick to save time,
and finally made it 20-18 in the last seconds. Green-Price fittingly got the winning try, the others
going to the back row and scrum half.
The St. Richard's ground, being narrow, called for similar tactics. In a good though unspectacular
game we were 0-16 down at half-time, but scored four tries to one afterwards, only losing
through goal-kicking, which was our weakest point throughout. Edmonds' plunge for the line
after a ruck was a highlight.
The threequarters had their best day against Moor Park 2nd, their running and passing having
real slickness and drive, which brought five tries shared between Simpson, Jefferson-Brown, and
Green-Price. It was nice to win on the Elms ground, where we have done badly of late, the most
memorable thing in a 26-0 victory being a run by Tudge, S., probably the youngest man on the
field, who caught direct from a kick-off and went clean through to the posts.
7

The other games were one bad defeat, in which for once we failed to stand up to weight; another
defeat 12-20, where we began and ended well with a slack patch in the middle; and a 32-12 win in
which skill and speed overcame size. This game was memorable for five tries by Simpson. The
pack got him the ball, and the breaks and handling of Phelps and Redmayne especially gave him the
openings that wings dream of; but when all due credit is given to others, his speed and well-judged
swerve, now in, now out, were something to remember.
Many of our opponents rely heavily on one or two men for their points, and it was one of our
XV's best features that 12 men shared in the scoring. As for several years past, we had a pack of
no great weight but hard and technically skillful. Manning and Bearcroft were strong and
combative props, Kimpton a clever hooker, Thomas hard-working and intelligent, Edmonds
knowledgeable and full of drive. and Tyler the best all-round forward of all; while the Rankers,
Wallace and Tudge, were dashing attackers in spite of lack of size. Behind them Coley, the third
scrum half in the family, was full of promise, and the harder the match the better he played; and
outside him Phelps, who scored no tries, was the best handler and most elusive runner of all the
backs, and the best tackler.
The Henry Oldnall Sevens were marred by wet conditions. Each of our sides won one game out of
three, the B team drawing one also; they played better than our A side, and MacLaren scored a
specially good try.
There were fewer promising non-team players than usual, the best being Wallace, P., who played
as substitute in a match or two, Stallard, Jones, and Pulfer, J.
Two rounds of Colour Matches were played, Greens and Greys tying for first place; and the
Kicking Cup was won by Blues.
Tyler, Manning, and Bearcroft played in a Combined Counties Prep. Schools XV in an excellent
match against Kidderminster Schools, which resulted in an exciting draw at 20-20.

SOCCER
This was by no means a bad team despite poor figures and the fact that we did not win a match.
In the past we have had better results with less good sides. Part of the trouble was tactical. The
captain, Green-Price, began the season at centre-half but he was always more at home in the
forward line and finished up at inside-left where he played well. Tyler came in at centre-half and
though lacking basic football skills he was strong enough and positioned himself well enough to
hold the side together, particularly in times of crisis. Of the other forwards the Wallace brothers
made a good right wing as both are fast and kick well. Tudge had plenty of dash in the centre and
Coley, on the left, was the most consistent and reliable of all. The biggest weakness was in finishing
power but they played attractive football and swung the ball about from wing to wing. The wing
halves helped in this but somehow they never really settled down and Phelps, Kimpton and
Jones shared the positions. Jefferson-Brown and Stallard co-operated well with each other in
defence but too often they were called upon to make up deficiencies in mid-field. Edmonds kept goal
with courage and coolness and also improved his punting considerably.
The scores give a good indication of how close we came to winning several matches. We lost by
the odd goal in seven to both Abberley and Moor Park 2nds, and by the odd goal in five to Winterfold
at home; this last was our best performance as they had already overwhelmed us on their ground. We
drew 1-1 with the 'Ferrets' from Malvern College.
Seven of the side will be here next year so prospects are reasonably good.
In the colour matches Greys beat Blues and then Greens beat both Greys and Blues.
8

CRICKET
Played 8: Won 5, Lost 3
For some time now each year has been better than the previous one and 1977 was no
exception. The three main factors in the success of the team were : Moore's excellent bowling;
he took 35 wickets for an average of less than 5 runs each; the captaincy of Green-Price,
particularly his bowling changes; the high standard of the fielding.
In support there was Jones who bowls his slow left arm orthodox with good sense; he clean bowled
four of the Fathers by beating them in the air and only just failed to get the hat-trick taking 3
wickets in 4 balls. Green-Price and Coley batted well together making one splendid stand of 63
and Green-Price made 50 against the O.A.A. Moore developed into a watchful opener and
Wallace, P., at No. 3, was technically the most correct batsman though he had little luck. Wallace, G.
improved all the time and scored a valuable 33 against Moffats.
The running between the wickets, with one marked exception, was lively and intelligent and many
runs, not to mention overthrows, were gathered by good judgement of short singles.
Tudge, S. kept wicket with skill and he had the courage to stand up to Moore which makes so
much difference to the bowler. He had four stumpings in the Fathers' match. Colyer had little
chance to bowl but when he did was usually accurate and he has the useful knack of taking the
vital wicket at the right moment.
Most pleasing of all was the fielding. Everyone could catch : the ground fielding was mostly
slick and the throwing flat and accurate. One remembers especially Jones throwing the wicket
down twice from third man to dismiss St. Richard's last two batsmen.
Manning, Kimpton and Packman each played in one or more matches. Greens won the colour matches
with Blues second.

WINTER ACTIVITIES

The standard in Gym was good at the top, but otherwise there was not enough progress and
little sign of new talent coming on. Kimpton was the best, followed by Phelps, Wallace, G., and
Tudge, S., and these four and Bearcroft and Green-Price won their Colours. It is some time since
we had so many at such a high level.
In Shooting, Green-Price won the Cup, and Colours were awarded to him and Bearcroft and
Kimpton; but after that the standard fell right away and nobody else could be said to be able to shoot
at all.
At Cross-Country there were some close team-races and in the end only two points separated the
three colours, Greys beating Greens by one point, with Blues one point behind Greens. Wallace, G.
was best, followed by Green-Price and Bearcroft; and Wallace, P., Tudge, S., and. Stallard did well
among the juniors.

PENTATHLON
White Badges were won during the year by Tyler, R., Bearcroft, and Tudge, S., which was a larger
number than last year. Among the others Stallard did best, but once again there was not a great
deal of progress apart from the few at the top,
9
SWIMMING
The season was short because of cold weather, which hampered progress. Bearcroft, Tyler, R.,
and Tudge, S. were the best performers but did not get far enough in tests to qualify for Colours.
Nelson passed the largest number of tests; Coley, Tyler, J., Wallace, P., and Tainton did well;
and Fox and Edmonds, E. showed promise among the new boys. In the Swimming Sports Tudge,
S. and Bearcroft did best in the seniors, and Stallard, Packman, J., and Edmonds, E. in the juniors.
Greens won the cup by a wide margin.

ATHLETICS
The number of standards passed was good in the top two divisions, but poor in the
others.Those who passed all were Wallace, G., Green-Price, Bearcroft, Simpson, Wallace, P.,
Tudge, S., and Stallard. On Sports Day itself Division I did well, though there were no
outstanding performances, Wallace, G. scoring most points; and Wallace, P. followed his lead by
doing best in Division II. Stallard, Turner, and Blair-Oliphant, R. were the pick of Division III,
and Palmer of Division IV. The finals were won by Greys, but Greens' lead in standards was
enough to win them the Cup by a single point. Colours were awarded to Wallace, G., Bearcroft, Green-
Price, and Simpson.

CAMP
The writer of this account is sometimes told that his trouble is that he's a perfectionist (Boys
don't know that word; they just say 'always moaning about something'). O.K. Would you like some of
this sumptuous pudding, swimming in cream and full of luscious strawberries? It's only here and
there that it contains lumps of soap, so that you have to run to the sink to spit; mostly it's very
nice. But might it not have been a good thing if the cook had been a perfectionist?
This year's main moan is about the same old thing — leadership; and the weakness in both
leaders and led was inability to think for themselves. Look over there. Six boys are cutting big
logs, working like beavers, using their tools with skill. Admirable in every way; except that it is
quite useless. We already have more big logs than we need, but no smaller wood whatever; you
can't light a five-inch log with a match. That is a very simple example, and it actually happened.
The youngest boy ought to be able to think better than that. Next year he should be capable of
stringing together several such thoughts into a plan. Finally he will be looking ahead to tomorrow
morning, deciding what to do if so-and-so happens. The fact that he knows what is needed gives him
confidence, and younger boys know he knows and look to him. He realises this and is
determined not to let them down; he becomes proud of what he and they can do together, so he
teaches them and takes an interest in how they get on. He is becoming a leader; not because he
has suddenly been told to be one, but because of something that has been going on for years,
starting with learning to think.
There was nothing wrong with our leaders' effort and example: they worked like anything. But it is
a temptation to soothe your conscience with energy when the hard thing is to stand back and plan.
It is as though the Postmaster General were to be seen pedalling furiously round Britain on a
bicycle with the letters (Perhaps we might get them quicker, at that).
Difficult to think of a lot of things at once? Well, in a few years you'll have to deal with clutch,
gear-lever, brake, accelerator, and indicator, look in the mirror and watch traffic lights, other
cars, and a wobbling bicycle, all in a couple of seconds; and if amid all that excitement you forget about
the
10

steering wheel, the result will be unsatisfactory. Like the time you burnt the breakfast.
Now that we have given a good airing to criticism we can turn with a clear conscience to praise.
For there was much that was good, some of it so automatic that it was easy to forget all about
it. First and most important was the feeling that every single boy really wanted to do well, and as
regards loyalty and goodwill the spirit could hardly have been better. Next, we have had a
succession of hard-working camps recently, but if anything this was the best in that line; pretty well
perfect in fact, except for that chap in a dark blue anorak who tended to think that the cooks
needed help when his patrol was doing something dull. You simply never saw anyone doing
nothing, and it was significant that first thing in the morning the tents were empty and everyone out
at work much quicker than last year. Tent discipline and tidiness were good too (Cuckoos the best
organised) so the leaders were good there.
Cuckoos were the most sensible over wood too, though Peckers did specially well towards the end.
Did you notice how, in spite of the fact that we had used up a lot, wood was somehow easier to
find as time went on? That showed you were learning. The wood-yard got tidier too. Digging was
first-rate; Eagles set a high standard the first day and the rest kept it up. Refuse-pits and latrines
were almost perfect, both in action and when finished off. And there were the things that didn't
happen : no tools lost or broken, for instance. No boys either.
Health excellent; one brief upset tum and two very minor indispositions. No foolish injuries;;
small cuts and blisters well dealt with by the boys on their own; and the first-aid box has rarely been
so tidily kept, except when B------- oh, never mind. Litter? So-so; boys picked up 5 sweet-papers a
day and the S.M. 50; but there wouldn't be any if you didn't put them in your pocket so that they
flew out whenever you used your handkerchief. Anyway the kitchen area was tidier than usual.
Bathing was sensible and joyful in spite of the cold, with diving a special feature. A few years
ago only one or two boys dived from the high place, but this time everyone used it, except the one
who wasn't allowed to, and all preferred to dive rather than jump.
Visitors' Day was our only thoroughly wet one, and we dared not risk going to church and sitting
for an hour with wet feet while unknown disasters might be developing back in camp. There was the
mental discomfort of looking after dripping parents, half of them inadequately clad; and it is a pity
that so many just talk to their sons without taking any interest in the camp. But some did look into
things and ask quesions, and they seemed to like what they saw.
Other days were mostly cold, though two were lovely, and there was not much rain. The gallant old
tents stood what there was without a single leak, largely because a great deal of care was taken
over pitching them right. One or two nights were very cold, but it was a good point that all doors
were kept open; a tentful of boys with doors shut smells like a drain, and probably contains as many
germs.
The camp had lots of little special things to remember it by, which for some reason is usually a
good sign. After years of finding sheep good neighbours, we had this time one ewe and lamb with a
passion for bread and jam, and we suffered losses till we learnt to put things out of reach and
fortify the food-tent. And there were the birds : a family of five kingfishers, redstarts everywhere, pied
flycatchers, a barn owl floating ghostily over the rushes one evening, a jay making use of the refuse
pit, wheatears on the mountains, and a charming family of chaffinches hopping about kitchen and
dining table within a few feet of us. Then you think of Green-Price's hoarse cries of "Pud thad
bacod id the oved", and other orders idcobrehedsible through hay-fever; and of Manning, rocking
from one foot to the other while he ponderously thought something out, looking like a
Hereford cow doing mental arithmetic. You remember the huge pair of boots marching along with
toes turned out and a tiny bit of grinning Phelps sticking out at the top; and the other permanent grin
belonging to Tyler, J., always mysteriously wearing two hats. Packman luckily still wore his glasses
11

on the end of his nose and had one side of his shirt hanging out; otherwise he would have been
unrecognizable, since he hadn't hands in pockets and was always busy. Other unrecognizables were B-
J, with ten times as much action as talk instead of the other way round; and Colyer, who at school
looks as if he was playing poker but who was now all smiles and chat and worked like a hero.
Transport was easier than for a long time, thanks to Mrs. Manning with Range-Rover and trailer,
and to Edward Weaving's mini-bus. The bus simplified the hikes too. Minor snags prevented the
complete army going on either, but nearly everybody managed at least one; the first to the top of
Radnor Forest, the second to Drygarn Fawn above Abergwesyn, where we helped European
solidarity by guiding to safety a German professor who was completely lost on this very wild stretch
of mountain. Edward was a worthy successor to Hugo Tuthill; and I wonder how many of you will
be willing, when the time comes, to devote to Camp your first holiday for two years.
As usual the Collards were marvellously kind and generous; not many camps have as good a site,
let alone having it free, with storage at the farm and transport by tractor thrown in. As usual,
too, Mrs. Griffith's arrangements ensured that supplies were all there and easy to manage. And as
all too usual, some boys never thanked at all, some managed it with prompting, and only one
thanked well on his own.
It is hard to know how this camp stood in comparison with others, because conditions were
mostly easy. The worst crashes came when everything was straightforward, and on the most
difficult day everyone did well; so it is at least possible that hardships would have pulled the best
out of us rather than the worst. At any rate the S.M. found himself more confident and at ease
towards the end than earlier on.
Perhaps the last morning was typical of the whole. There was rain, and having got up an hour
early we were a bit slow at first; but once breakfast was inside us things went with a bang, thanks
largely to splendid packing of food and gear by Tyler, R. Tents were struck very fast, all was
finished twenty minutes before the tractor came, and soon we were all up at the farm, lo ad ed and
re ady . . . . and f ound we ha d left the milk crate in th e river. Oh well, you can't have everything.
Or can you? I don't see why not.

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