Gifford High School Bulawayo 50th Anniversary Jubilee Magazine Page 25
THE EVENING DEPARTMENT
From the beginning it was the intention to establish an evening department for the postschool instruction of apprentices and others in subjects likely to be of value to them. Within a week of the establishment of the Day School, the Evening School was duly launched, and the Headmaster and Staff were called upon to devote a proportion of their time and energy to this work, which had not previously been given any systematic planning anywhere in Rhodesia, and which called for the development of new techniques in administration and in teaching.
Bulawayo was the centre of such industrial development as the country had achieved by 1927 and the workshops of the Rhodesia Railways were the industrial heart of Bulawayo, a town, be it remembered, of fewer than 8 000 white people. Other firms were coming into existence to undertake the manufacture of mining and agricultural machinery and its maintenance. Growth was in the air and it was evident that technical skills were going to be in demand. Into these firms, as to the Railways, there was a small but steady flow of apprentices and the post school education of these young men in technical matters began to loom as a paramount necessity.
In the beginning the notion of part-time release from work to attend classes was in its infancy except with very large industrial and Government organisations in Britain. Attendance at classes was made compulsory for the early years of apprenticeship by the Rhodesia Railways and other local employers, but such attendance was to be in each student’s own time. This was accepted by many apprentices ungrudgingly, but there was a touch of resentment by some at being required to give up six hours of their own time each week. In time, however, the willing element came to predominate. Above all Evening School enrolment began to include in ever-increasing numbers boys who had gained a good grounding in mathematics and technical-drawing at the Day School.
The physical circumstances of evening classes in the early days left a lot to be desired. Compared with present-day conditions at the Technical College, they were bad indeed. The classrooms were badly lit and in winter were cold and inhospitable. The teaching hours were 7.30-9.30 p.m. without a break. Some attempt was made to start and maintain classes in commerce subjects, with success.
It was twenty-six years before the Evening Department evolved into its true form and home with the establishment of the Technical College in 1953. By that time, by dint of hard work and dogged persistence, large numbers of apprentices in engineering and the building trades had equipped themselves with a background of theoretical knowledge which made them eligible for careers well above workshop level. By that time, too, the notion of day-release had gained ground. The Rhodesia Railways made generous concessions which the industrial councils were quick to follow. The way ahead was open.
One looks back on the development of evening education with some satisfaction despite the inconvenience and strain it imposed on staff and students alike. Not only was the Evening Department the seed-bed from which sprang the College, it was also the cradle of the Old Technicians’ Association. Above all it gave many a young man and young woman a channel and an incentive towards a career of higher status and greater usefulness in their developing land.
H. J. SUTHERBY
FIFTY YEARS ON, A LOOK BACK
It was no easy task to bring a new type of school into existence in 1927. The white population of Bulawayo was about 7 000, and of the whole country was some 38000, men, women and children. The number of boys in the 13-15 range of years was therefore small and all of them were catered for by existing schools.
In getting together his band of pioneer scholars,
Mr. Gifford had to turn mainly to the parents of junior school leavers and persuade them to send their sons to his new school. He did manage to bring with him from the Boys’ High in Salisbury a handful of boys of known scholastic ability, who were to be the backbone of the first year. In the end by providing convincing justification in speeches to local organisations, in press interviews and by advertising he gathered together sufficient to start a school.
Recruitment difficulties dogged us for the first year or two, but in time publicity was found to be self-generating. The building of a temporary engineering workshop on the Main Street premises and the installation of its machine tools in January 1928, the Department of Education’s faith - to the extent of building the new premises in Rhodes Street - and above all the production of successful examination results - made the School known, and provided it with public confidence and esteem.
The first day
It was Thursday, 27 January 1927. The full complement of boys had not arrived, but the bell was rung. The boys were ushered into line. Mr P. H. Gifford descended from his quarters, the four members of the staff ranged themselves behind him - Mr W. E. Farrell, Mr A. C. Vaughan, Mr. Arderne and Mr. H. J. Sutherby. (Mr. T. M. Shand joined the staff in July on Mr. Arderne’s resignation).
The Headmaster said a Collect; we all recited the Lord’s Prayer. A roll was called. The boys were divided into two groups which, after some sorting out, became forms A and B. They were led to two classrooms and we were all set for a test of scholastic ability when it was found that there was no chalk. A box was soon forthcoming from the headmistress of Eveline High School on a hurriedly telephoned request.
Questions were written on blackboards and the tests began. Soon it was time for the "break", after which the first-day formalities started. Slightly more orthodox registers were prepared. Stationery and text-books were issued. The outline of a lesson was given to each class and instructions were given as to the morrow. I think "prep" was set on the Headmaster’s orders. A bell was rung and the school dismissed.
At that moment we had no colours, no motto, no crest; the engineering workshop was not built. We had no sports equipment and no prepared playing fields. But, we were alive and kicking. We were one day old. We were a School.
The Standards Achieved
The standard of education required on admission was a nominal standard VI, which in those days was part of the junior school curriculum. The first-year course was therefore standard VI, and it was directed towards the National Technical Standard VII Certificate of the Union of South Africa, later known as the Preliminary Technical Certificate (P.T.C.).
The subjects were English, civics, physical science, workshop, arithmetic, technical-drawing and geography. Afrikaans was introduced later. This course served us well for twenty years or more. It was revised and brought up to date from time to time. The pass mark was 40% in every subject; a distinction was 70%. To achieve the honour of "Top place in South Africa and Rhodesia" with many hundreds, sometimes thousands, of candidates involved, usually demanded 90 to 100% and was obtained by the B.T.S. boys, some scores of times over the years.
We worked a four-term year in those days. Fees were charged for both evening and day tuition, but these were dropped after a few years. The lowest rung of the salary scale in 1927 was £330 per annum for non-graduates and £420 per annum for graduates, with an additional (non-pensionable) marriage allowance of £50 per year.
A matron’s salary was £8/10/0 per month with board, lodging and laundry during school terms. Resident masters paid £24 per annum for board and lodging.
THE HUNGRY GENERATIONS
(A survey of the Boarding establishment)
In any school which has boarders, they are recognised to be a unique breed. It is fitting therefore, that our Hostels should have a separate record in Hinc Orior 1977.
Our first boarders were accommodated when the School opened in 1927. They stayed originally in the old St. George’s complex and constituted a significant slice of Bulawayo’s then total white population of 7 000. Mr. P. H. Gifford was superintendent, and stayed in a small suite adjacent to the pupils’ quarters, while Mr H.J. Sutherby and 'Daddy' Vaughan (as he was
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affectionately known), were the resident masters who lived in a bungalow in the grounds. In August 1930 the School occupied its first purpose-built hostel, called Main House, in 12th Avenue; Mr. Gifford was the superintendent.
In 1936 Heyman House, in Clark Road, was leased as a hostel for the mining students. This had been the residence of Sir Melville Heyman. Forty boys moved in, under Mr. A. E. ("Tinky") Farrell, the first Housemaster. In the following year Heyman House was enlarged to take 100 boarders; Mr. Sutherby became Superintendent and Mr. Farrell became Superintendent of Main Hostel, where he remained until the hostel was handed over to Coghlan School in 1943. Heyman House was a stately but somewhat decrepit building which the Government had rented originally for one year, though the lease was thereafter extended several times. It was renamed St. Patrick’s House by Coghlan School.
The rapid expansion of the School made it necessary in 1939 to take over Russell House. This hostel was built in 1928 as a hostel for the Bulawayo Public School (later the Bulawayo Primary school, later renamed Coghlan School). Russell House was named after the Chief Justice of Rhodesia from 1931-1942, Sir Fraser Russell. Sir Fraser acted as Governor of Southern Rhodesia on four occasions, and had the other distinction of winning a guinea prize for naming the suburb of Kumalo! He received his knighthood in 1933.
Mr. Sutherby became the first superintendent Russell House after the School took it over and remained there until 1948, when Mr. A.J.Anderson became superintendent. Russell House, of course, included the dining-hall complex, which is separate from the main building. Mr. S. Higham succeeded Mr. Sutherby as superintendent of Heyman House.
In 1943, having handed over Main Hostel to Coghlan School, the School occupied another hostel, Johnson House, in Park Road. This hostel, for senior boys, was named after the much-loved chairman of the Schools’ Advisory Council, Sir George Johnson, who had done a great deal for the School over a long period. Mr. A. E. Farrell became its first superintendent, to be succeeded by Mr. A. Hart in 1946 (Mr. Hart had been superintendent of Heyman House for one year.)
Our hostel accommodation was thus scattered very effectively and boarders did a good deal of commuting to school in Rhodes Street.
Russell House was extended in 1948, and in 1950 the dining-haIl/kitchen complex was altered by closing the 'assembly verandah' to enlarge the kitchen.
In that same year we moved out of Heyman House, whose superintendent at that time was Mr. E. J. C. Bacon (he had succeeded Mr. G. L. Anderson, who had been superintendent of Heyman for a year in 1946.)
In 1946 an unofficial hostel called 'Grundy House' was established at 46 Park Road, Suburbs (it had been in existence before that in a lesserknown existence closer to the school). It catered largely for boys from Northern Rhodesia and Nyasaland (as they then were) and derived its name from its owner, Mrs. Grundy, whose discipline remains a legend.
After the surrender of Heyman House, its inmates were supposed to have moved into a new hostel (referred to as an 'austerity type' hostel) which was in the process of being built near Russell House. Unfortunately, though not unprecedentedly, it was not yet complete, so for six months the tenants of Heyman House lived in the 'South Gym' (currently the only gymnasium) with their young resident master, Mr. Ian Grant (now the Secretary for Education).
Two years previously another young man on the Staff, Mr. J. A. C. Houlton, had acted as superintendent of Johnson House. He became Mr. Grant’s predecessor as Secretary for Education truly, - the School has been a seed-bed for distinction in many fields.
On 2 July, 1951, we finally moved into the newly-completed hostel, which was named after a well-known citizen of Bulawayo and friend of
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the School, Colonel (also Alderman) C. M. Newman, a former Mayor of Bulawayo and Chairman then of the School Advisory Council.
The first housemaster of Newman House (one of our only two surviving hostels) was Mr. E. J. C. Bacon, previously superintendent of Heyman House. He was succeeded in 1954 by Mr. C. D. Cowan, whose name lives on in the School in the Cowan Field and the Charles Cowan Memorial Gates which were built after his tragic death in a climbing accident in the Matopos, very shortly after his retirement.
Meanwhile, Mr. W. A. Owen had been appointed superintendent of Johnson House in 1952 and was succeeded there by Mr. Cowan, in 1956. Mr. Cowan was to be the last superintendent of Johnson House, which was in 1960 surrendered to the new Bulawayo Technical College.
In 1962 Mr. Cowan took over as superintendent of Russell House where extensive alterations had been done the year before: the quadrangle had been enclosed by building a single-storey unit across it; today this area constitutes prefects’ and monitors’ rooms. Mr. Cowan took over from Mr. G. Lambert who, at the time of writing, is Headmaster of Mount Pleasant School, Salisbury; he was then Deputy Headmaster of Gifford. Mr. Lambert had been appointed superintendent in 1961, taking over from Mr. C. E. de Wet who had been superintendent since 1957.
When Mr. Cowan moved to Johnson House from Newman House in 1956, Mr. S. H. (Stan) McLoughlin took over as housemaster; Mr. McLaughlin was another Deputy Headmaster of the School. He is remembered for his fine garden, among other things.
1968 saw two further changes in hostel administration: Mr. I. J. Mclachlan, the Headmaster, became superintendent and moved into Newman House, and Mr. J. Herbst (another Deputy Headmaster) became housemaster of Russell House.
In the interim, pressure on boarding places had made it necessary for a number of Gifford boys to be accommodated in the Hillside Junior School Hostel, from 1963 to 1965. In 1963 and 1964 Mr. B. P. Webb who is still on the Staff, looked after them there, and in 1965 this fell to Mr. N. Clark, who is now Headmaster of Tennyson Junior School.
In 1968 Mr. Herbst left Russell House and was succeeded by Mr. D. K. Broster, who is at present Deputy Headmaster of Umtali Boys’ High School. He was succeeded in 1971 by Mr. W. McQuade, now senior Master at Falcon College, who was in turn succeeded in 1972 by Mr. A. Menne, who still reigns over Russell House.
Mr. McLachlan left Newman in 1973 to move to his own home, so Mr. R. T. McGeoch became housemaster. Mr. McLachlan remained as nonresident superintendent, a post which the new Headmaster, Mr. H. Fincham, also non-resident, took over in 1974, but relinquished to Mr. Menné in 1976.
Mr. D. J. Gray took over as Housemaster of Newman House in September, 1975, and still occupies this post.
In 1975 further alterations were done in the dining-hall/kitchen complex. These alterations were to the matrons’ quarters. In that same year a new floor was put into the dining-hall.
So much for the buildings and the Staff. What about the boys — the “hungry generations”? They will recall the buildings and the staff and a thousand other details. Their own story is recorded in the society of Southern Africa, where a great many of them occupy leading positions. We like to think that the boarding situation at the School helped to shape their futures. May they be the “satisfied generations”.
TWENTY-ONE YEARS AT THE “TECH”
by A. Hart, Esq., Headmaster 1953 to 1961
Twenty-one years at the Bulawayo Technical School is a long time and I cannot do more than jot down a few random recollections of events and personalities during that period.
Arriving in January 1941 and reporting to Mr. P. H. Gifford at Rhodes Street, I found a school different from anything I had known before. Before long I was committed to doing visiting duty at Heyman House (one week-end in three) and part-time military training (one week-end in two) for the Second World War was still in its early stages. Thus, in a term of twelve weeks, I had only two week-ends at home! Nevertheless, with Mr. H. J. Friggens, I founded the School Debating Society which got off to an excellent start thanks to the enthusiasm of some brilliant boys in the Mining School, such as A. Banks, M. Piers and W. Andley. Mrs. Hart kindly took on the job of producing a one-act play for speech Night, choosing Augustus In Search of a Father with David Candler as a night watchman.
In the classroom I remember being harangued by an inebriated gentleman passing by in 11th Avenue — “What are you doing? Teaching, eh ?“ — and I can still see a well-meaning, if misguided,
inspector of schools demonstrating the latest teaching technique by trying to slide over the knotted floor-boards of classroom A to illustrate Mr. Pickwick’s venture on the ice. In the Rhodes Street staffroom I was impressed by the practical knowledge shown by so many of the staff in ordinary conversation and the rapid sketches made by such talented men as Mr. Pingstone and Mr. Shand.
Mr. Gifford was a man of considerable presence, besides being kindly and always ready to inspire individual members of staff with confidence when he deemed it advisable. At Assembly he would say: “Now I want you to listen carefully to what I have to say.. . Tell that boy over there to stop fidgeting I” And what he had to say was good common-sense and well-heeded by most of his audience, the gist of his tale being that the School was, and must continue to be, second to none. An example of his sense of humour was the way he brought to an end a lengthy discussion at a staff-meeting about a proposed School dance with the remark: “We can’t spend the term on the dance floor!”
A pleasant interlude came in September 1942 when I had the privilege of taking over Russell House for a term during Mr. Sutherby’s absence on leave. This was brought to a happy conclusion by Christmas festivities which included an excellent thriller produced by Mrs. Hart. Alan Carew’s captaincy of the School’s cricket team came about this time, and I remember particularly his century against Milton and the XI’s second victory over Plumtree.
Appointment as Heyman House Superintendent in 1945 did not turn out happily as I had to leave it suddenly for hospital. But, a year later when Mr. Farrell went to Chaplin School as Head, I was fit enough to accept the Johnson House post. At least I attended to the housemaster’s duties while my wife supervised domestic matters — unofficially of course. She also ran the tuckshop with great success. There were worries in this job, but in some ways it was the most enjoyable period I spent at the School. One bright sunny early morning, when the cadets among our boarders were to leave for camp, we were woken by the most perfect bugle call of reveille I have ever heard. There was something quite romantic about it and I wish I could remember the name of the bugler. I wonder how many of those concerned would remember when I found it necessary to gate the head boy of the house, Christopher Dams, and all Dorm 1 ? The offence must have been fairly innocuous, but everyone took the affair in good part. And who was the boy who rang my front door bell early one morning with a straight face and the story of some disaster requiring immediate attention — on 1 April?
1947 became known as the year of the three headmasters. Mr. Sutherby had left to take charge of the Salisbury Polytechnic and Mr. Gifford had gone on leave, so Mr. G. J. Anderson acted as Head for the first term. The second term saw Mr. Gifford back to complete one more term before joining the inspectorate, while in the third term Mr. Sutherby’s period of headship began. All who were at the School during that time will remember Mr. Sutherby’s Friday morning assemblies. The most impressive Assembly of all was that which he organised so well for the unveiling of the School’s War Memorial plaque by Field Marshall Earl Wavell in 1948 which was one of the School’s greatest occasions.
Back at Johnson House we played our part during the two-day general strike. I can still see in the mind’s eye some of our brawny seniors just returned, hot and grimy, from their unwonted toil as shovellers of coal at the power station. Others performed varied tasks of a less strenuous nature and seemed to enjoy the change from normal school routine.
In August 1951 my wife and I left Johnson House and moved into our own home. Later, Mr. Sutherby being away, I had to interview candidates for the post of Bursar, among whom was Mr. P. T. H. Crandon. I duly reported to the Headmaster that I thought Mr. P. T. H. Crandon “too good for the job”. He was, of course, appointed and proved to be worth his weight in gold. (See page 49). I must not forget to mention Mr. G. J. Anderson’s sotto voce remark remark to me one day after the morning Assembly had been dismissed with the not uncommon command Right and left turn: “He wants to make us into contortionists,” he said.
In 1953 Mr. H. J. Sutherby became Principal of the newly formed Technical College and I was appointed Headmaster of the School. I received my instructions from Mr. L. R. Morgan, Secretary for Education, with whom I paced the platform of Bulawayo station as he was changing trains on the way to Pretoria. As Headmaster I missed my regular teaching, but found plenty to do in the office and much interest in attending School matches and other functions. Once I was asked to inspect the Cadet Corps and address “the troops”: I accepted with some trepidation, but found the experience (complete with tea taken with Officers and N.C.O’s afterwards) quite a pleasure. The cadets were ably commanded and
instructed in my time and one always felt proud of them at the Queen’s Birthday parade.
Two other things came to mind: that tremendous boxing match between John Banks and Michael Smart; and the picture (and voice) of Mr. M. W. Tregidgo starting the races at athletic sports with such efficiency.
In 1961 at my last Speech Night, with Mr. W. A. Mollatt (Chief Inspector of Schools) a very welcome guest-speaker, we also had the ceremony of re-naming the School after the first Headmaster. It was a great pleasure to have him on the stage to receive an illuminated address and to speak to us all. (See photo page 22) Mrs. Gifford, too, was there to play her part by unveiling the plaque inscribed with the new name.
Then, early in 1962, after a round of farewells came the day of departure for England. A goodly number of Staff and senior boys came to the station to see us off, a gesture that was greatly appreciated.
DECORATIONS FOR GALLANTRY
F/O. B.T.F. Coventry
F/Lt. M. J. Goodwin, D.F.M.
F/O. E. G. Hadingham
P/O. R. K. Hart
F/Lt. J. D. Haworth
P/O. L. W. Hayler
P/O. D. G. Fitt
F/Lt. N. J. Lucas
P/O. D. Palmer
Sergt. H. J. Goodwin
Sergt. F. E. Peters
C.G.M.: Sergt. A. H. Cowham
M.M.: Sergt. P. Vorster
M.C.: Lieut. G. Miller
B.E.M. (Military Division): L/Cpl. C. P. Pavlich
American Bronze Star: Tpr. D. Eltze
M.B.E. Capt. W. H. Harnden
MENTIONED IN DESPATCHES (1939-1945)
Cpl. A. Armstrong
W/O. II. A. W. Barbour
F/O. J. A. Konschel
A/C. S. A. McMaster
F/O. P. M. C. Theodosiou
Rfn. A. Thomas
Sergt. J. T. Tsirindanis
1974— Air Sub.Lieut. C. P. Dickinson, O.L.M. (The Order of the Legion of Merit)
1975 — G. Devine was awarded the B.S.A.P. Commissioners’ Commendation for Bravery.
William van Niekerk
A. G. Crane|
D. D. Rosedale
|E. C. Clarke|
THEIR NAME LIVETH FOR EVERMORE
A War Memorial plaque in honour of fifty-four old bays who gave their lives during the Second World War was unveiled at a Dedication Service in the Beit Hall, Rhodes Street, on 2 March 1948.
It was in March 1947 that Messrs. Thomas Henshaw and Sons of Edinburgh were engaged to supply a bronze memorial. At the top the letters B.T.S. appear, together with the School’s crest and motto; below the dates 1939-1945 is an inscription: To the Glorious Memory of Old Boys of this School who fell in the Cause of Freedom. Their Name Liveth for Evermore. Notable is the fact that no rank or decoration is mentioned: none was needed. This noble memorial is cased in a fine wooden mounting, and it is now in the foyer of the new School Hall, but the solemnity of its original dedication in the Beit Hall remains with it.
One of the great soldiers of the Second World War, Field Marshall Earl Wavell, P.C., G.C.B., G.C.S.I., C.M.G., M.C., unveiled the memorial in the presence of the whole school, including the Headmaster, Mr. H. J. Sutherby, and the Head Boy, W. A. Donkin, as well as the Founder Headmaster, Mr. P. H. Gifford. Present were many relatives and friends, representatives of the Old Technicians’ Association and of the School’s Advisory Committee, and from various schools, churches, and civic bodies.
Mr. Gifford delivered the moving dedicatory address — particularly moving since both he and Mr. Sutherby, the Headmaster, remembered each of these men personally. In a recent letter to the present Headmaster, Mr. Sutherby commented on the fact that he remembered very vividly still all those men and the ceremony at which their sacrifice was honoured.
Field-Marshall Wavell’s short speech (recorded in the 1948 Magazine) ended with the wholly appropriate epitaph pronounced on Allan Wilson and the Shangani patrol by a Matabele chieftain after the battle in which they had been annihilated:
Let them lie in peace. They were men who fought like men, died like men, whose fathers were men.
THE PINGSTONE GATES
These beautiful wrought-iron gates were made in the School’s workshops in 1930 by Mr. H. A. Pingstone, who joined the staff in that year. There is no welding on the gates; all the wrought iron work is bolted together. They were erected on the Rhodes Street frontage of the School (which was then, of course, at the old site — not where it is now, off Matopos Road). Unfortunately a lorry struck one of the supporting pillars on which the gates were hung and the gates were taken down and put into storage.
When the School began concentrating on the Russell House site, they were erected on pillars at the entrance to what is now the Cowan Field, virtually where the Cowan Field name pillar now is. When the field was re-levelled and extended, they were once again taken down and remained unhung until 1977, when they were re-erected in 16th Avenue, near the Pate Pavilion.
It is fitting that they should hang near the Technical Drawing Centre and the Workshops — a continuing testimony to the fine craftmanship on which the technical teachers of this school have always prided themselves.
1. The Cowan Gates at the main entrance to the School.
2. Russell House, formerly the Primary Hostel of the Public School, which, together with Milton Junior School, were the first two primary schools in Bulawayo. It was built by McDonald and McFarlane and completed in July 1926 It was taken over by the School in 1939 as a junior hostel to replace Heyman House.
3. Dining Hall, built at the same time as Russell House.
4. Newman House was occupied on 2 July 1951. Previously 26 new boys, 2 prefects and the resident master, Mr. l. G. Grant, had had temporary accommodation in the converted south gymnasium.
5. Geography Department and Economics. It was built in 1939 by Public Works and was originally a pattern-making shop for the Technical School.
6. The School Hall built by A. Chiaklidas (Pvt.) Ltd. and opened on Friday, 18 July 1969 by Mr. A. P. Smith. Minister of Education.
7. The Administration Block, built by Nellen Construction. Work began on 5 October 1962 and was completed in the vacation between the first and second terms of 1963. In the interim, office staff and Headmaster were squeezed into two tiny rooms in the Famona Kindergarten School (14).
8. Quadrangle consisting of two senior laboratories two classrooms, and an art room (now the biology laboratory) was built by D. J. Burger in 1966.
9. The Library Block now housing part of the Mathematics and Science Departments, the library and prefects' common-room was built in three sections by W. S. Walenn. The first section which is furthest away from the Cowan Field, was occupied in January 1957, the second stage (which includes the old staff-room) in 1959, and the third section in 1960.
10. The Afrikaans Dapartment, an extension of the Library Block, was built by Burger and McBean (Pvt.) Ltd. and occupied in 1976.
11. The Pool Block houses the English, French and History Departments, and was occupied in the third term of 1975. Built by Burger and McBean (Pvt.) Ltd.
12. The Gym Block was built in 1942 by Jimmy Cowden and contained two gymnasia and two squash courts. This building was presented to the Southern Rhodesia Government in April 1945. The one gymnasium no longer exists, being turned first into workshops, then into four classrooms (1969), and then into an art-and-craft centre (1975) plus two rooms devoted to audio-visual equipment.
13. Metalwork Shop, built by J. Cowden and occupied early in 1961.
14. Workshop, built by W. S. Walenn & Son (Pvt.) Ltd. in 1961 and occupied in 1962.
15. Famona Block, originally the Famona Kindergarten School, was built by the National Housing Board, a Government organisation set up after the war to catch up on housing shortage. It was taken over in January 1962 thereby making it possible for all the School to come together at the South Branch with the exception of the one laboratory at the Rhodes Street school for junior science classes. It was converted to a technical -drawing centre in 1969.
16. The Pate Pavilion on which work started on 12 February 1964. There will be a separate artcle on this elsewhere in these web pages.
17. The new position of the Pingstone Gates.
18. The former Scout Hut which was built in 1960 with funds collected by Mrs. Hart and her committee. Mr. Ross Kerswell, Johnnie Nollenze (an old boy), and Mr. R. W. Pate were responsible for its construction.
19. Two prefabricated buildings, the one nearer the Famona Block (14) is the music room.
20. The African compound, which was built in 1946.
A. The Cowan Field, formerly the Russell House field or ''The Oval", is the main cricket field for the first-team matches in rugby and hockey. The field was levelled and resurfaced in 1957.
B. The Sutherby Field, formerly the South Field and venue for first XV matches. It was used for the first time in 1952, and was reconstructed in 1961.
C. The Andrew Hart Field, formerly the Middle or 1965 Field which is when it was planted with grass by Gifford pupils.
D. The Farrell Field, formerly the North Feild, was first used in 1957. The athletics track was still under construction when this photograph was taken (November 1976). The centre of the athletics oval will be a cricket field and hockey pitch.
E. The Sandham Field for junior hockey. Construction began in 1963 though the fieid was commissioned only in 1975.
F. The Stan McLoughlin Field, for rugby. Construction was also began in 1968 and the field was commissioned in 1975.
G. Fallow area which has been levelled as a playing field for future development.
H. Newman House Tennis court built in 1961 mostly by the boarders. Lt. Col. J. R. Webb (the father of our Mr. B. P. Webb) provided the posts and netting at a "very modest figure''.
J. The existing block of four courts commissioned in 1974. They were built on the site of two former courts at what was then known as the Russell House Site in 1954 and 1956.
K. Levelled area for the preparation in 1977 of three further courts.
L. The McLachlan Pool, on which work was begun on 15 March 1973, was officially opened on 28 September 1974. The P.T.A. project, namely the change-rooms, can be clearly seen.
M. The main basketball courts which were laid in 1970.
N. The Anderson Pool was built in 1944. The terracing clearly visible in the photograph was undertaken in 1960; the change-rooms built by the School in 1963 can be seen to the immediate right of the pool. Many Old Boys will remember this as the position of the old tuck shop. The tuck shop now operates in the foyer of the Hall.
O. The old basketball courts, used now mainly by junior teams, were laid down in 1963.
P. The cricket nets nearest the Cowan Gates were built in 1959 after it was found that the nets built in the south-east corner of the Field in 1957 were insufficient. There used to be further nets more or less where the McLachlan Pool is now.
Early in 1963, the Headmaster, Mr. D. White, approached me with a
suggestion that consideration might be given regarding the construction
of a cricket score-board to be carried out as a 5B project. Not only did
the School need a score-board, but a pavilion with changing facilities
was high on the list of priorities.
Several professional cricketers were consulted regarding the basic requirements for such a project, one being Mr. Wigginton, our caretaker and groundsman at that time, who had played for the Leicester County Cricket Club. Sketch plans were drawn for the Headmaster's approval. Although showing enthusiasm, he considered the proposed pavilion incorporating a score-board rather ambitious, as work of that nature had never been attempted at the School previously. In the end Mr. D. White agreed to find the money while I guaranteed that the building would be completed. A set of plans was soon on its way to Head Office in Salisbury showing the proposed site of our new pavilion, and work started on the foundations on 12 February 1964.
When I reflect on those early days, lads wielding picks and shovels, a great feeling of pride goes out to them, for not only were they learning about the building trade, they were being of service to their School. A large mound of sand, stones and cement arrived on site, and with the aid of a very large concrete mixer which was loaned to the School, 35 cubic yards of concrete were poured into the foundations and slab.
Next came the bricklaying, which is not one of the easier trades to learn, as many of the lads discovered, experiencing many sore thumbs and also a few heartaches. Some of the walls were built and rebuilt five times over. Soon, however, our pavilion started to take shape.
Local building merchants began to show interest, giving us all a wealth of encouragement in our endeavours. Window and door frames started to arrive on site, together with a 7-ton truck loaded with tubular scaffolding, kindly loaned to the School by Luveve Teachers' Training College. Erecting scaffolding was the next step. The lads did an excellent job learning that safety is of paramount importance, and also gaining confidence in their own ability. Shuttering for circular columns and beam boxes were all con. constructed in the workshop.
Both Mr. E. Lafrentz and the late Mr. J. Hotz willingly co-operated when the building required steel reinforcing for the beams, mats, etc.; also Mr. Lafrentz was primarily responsible for the fabrication of the score-board. The roof trustees were assembled in the workshop before being erected on site. Next came the plumbing and electrical work which was installed by the boys. The locker fittings, prefabricated in the workshop,, were finally fixed into the two changing-rooms, so forming seats and storage for cricket and hockey kit.
The cricket pavilion was officially opened on 6 November 1968 by His Worship the Mayor, Councillor J. Goldwasser, who unveiled a plaque naming the building the RON PATE PAVILION, a very great honour indeed; however, but for the wonderful effort and achievement of the lads of 5B, this project would not have come to fruition.
R. W. PATE.
Mr. H. FINCHAM, B.A.(Rand), T.T.D Headmaster Mr. R. A. FURBER, B.A., U.E.D.(Rhodes) Deputy Headmaster TEACHERS IN CHARGE Mr. E. M. CAREW, B.Sc.(London), P.C.E.(Exeter) Science Mr. D. M. DAVIS, B.A., U.E.D.(Rhodes) Geography Mrs. L. DU PREEZ, T.E.D.(Potchefstroom) Africaans Mr. R. T. McGEOCH, M.A., U.E.D.(Rhodes) English Mr. A. MENNE, B.A.(Rhodes), P.C.E.(London) Chief Assistant Mr. W. J. SANDHAM Technical Subjects Mr. D. G. TOWNSHEND B.Sc.(London) Mathematics Mr. A. L. VAN HEERDEN, B.A.(Rhodes) History; Additional Post SUBJECT TEACHERS Mr. J. BOYCE, Teacher’s Certificate (Bulawayo) Science Mr.T.M.BRINE Metalwork Mr. M. P. C. CLARANCE, B.A.(Rhodes), Cert. Ed.(London) English, Science Mrs. E. S. P. CLELLAND, M.A.(Glasgow), Scottish Ed. Dip.(Jordanhill) Mathematics Mr. A. DALY, B.A.(Manchester), Mm. of Ed. Cert.(London) Economics, Geography Mr. D. J. GRAY, B.Sc.(U.C.T.), P.G.C.E.(U.C.R.), Ac. Dip.(London) Chemistry Mrs. D. HAR DIE, Teacher’s Diploma (Bulawayo) Art Mr. M. F. HARLEN, B.Sc.(Hons.) (Natal), G.C.E.(U.R.) Science Miss N. K. HUGHES, L.R.A.M Music Mr. D. A. JACK, B.A., P.C.E.(London English Mrs. S. JORDAAN, B.A.(Natal) English Mr. E. R. LAFRENTZ Engineering Mrs. M. I. LEWIS, Cert. Ed.(Bulawayo), Dip.Agric.(Cedara) Mathematics Mrs. C. M. MOSS, B.Sc., U.E.D.(Reading), Mm. of Ed. Cert.(London) Science Mr. R. W. PATE Woodwork Mrs. M. P. PHILLIPS, Teacher’s Diploma (Bulawayo) Afrikaans Mrs. F. ROBSON, Teachers’ Certificate (Bulawayo) Mathematics Mr. I. G. SHAW, B.Ed.(Hons.) (Sussex), T.Cert.(Eastbourne) History Mrs. D. TOD, Teacher’s Diploma (Derby), Diploma(Sorbonne) French, English Mr. C. M. VILJOEN, Teacher’s Diploma (Goudstad) Afrikaans Mr. D. W. R. WAKEFIELD, Teacher’s Diploma (Bulawayo) Mathematics Mr. B. P. WEBB, B.A., U.E.D.(Rhodes) English Mr. F. WILSON, Teacher’s Diploma (Bulawayo) Physical Education Mrs. J. B. W. WOOLLACOTT Afrikaans OFFICE STAFF Mrs. M. C. KALLIE Bursar Mrs. C. RAFTOPOULOUS Secretary Mrs. S. M. THOMSON Part-time Assistant Mrs. A. L. L. FURBER Librarian HOSTEL STAFF Newman House Russel House Dining Hall Mrs. S. L. CUNNINGHAM Mrs. K. C. F. DEVENISH Mrs. S. N. CLOETE Mrs. A. C. SOFTLEY Mrs. B. M. GARDNER Mrs. M. P. E. LAWSON Mr. S. R. STRICKLAND Caretaker Mr. H. W. JEPTHA Groundsman *on leave
GIFFORD’S DEPUTY HEADS
Alfred Edmond “Tinky” FARRELL Page 41 Page 42 Page 43 Page 44 Page 45 Page 47 Page 49
First deputy head of the School, and a founder member of staff with Mr. Gifford, Mr. Farrell was number two in seniority until the post of deputy headmaster was made official, in which capacity he served until 1946. “Tinky” Farrell was born in 1892 at Kirriemuir, Scotland, and he obtained his M.A. and B.Sc. degrees at Edinburgh University. He served in the Royal Field Artillery and the Cavalry, in which he was commissioned, during the First World War, and after the war he taught in England and Scotland until he emigrated to Rhodesia in 1924. He joined the original Technical School Staff in 1927 after 3 years’ service at Umtali High School. Mr. Farrell taught science and mathematics, and was head of both departments; he was a hostel housemaster for many years, of Main Hostel 1937-42, and of Johnson House from 1943 till he left on promotion in 1946 when he was appointed Headmaster of Chaplin School, Gwelo. Mr. Farrell acted as headmaster on three occasions whilst at the Technical School. He is perhaps best remembered for his inspiring leadership of the Cadet detachment, which he started at the School in 1927 and of which he was in charge until he left. Mr. Farrell retired in 1952 and enjoyed a long and fruitful retirement until his death in February, 1976.
Served as deputy headmaster from January, 1948 to December, 1952, when he was appointed headmaster (see biographical notes on the headmasters of Gifford.)
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Graham John ANDERSON
Succeeded Mr. Hart, after the latter had been appointed Headmaster of the School, in January, 1953, and retired in this post in April, 1959. Mr. Anderson was born in Stirlingshire, Scotland and attended Rivington Grammar School, where he became School Captain (Head Boy). He went straight from school to the army, joining the famous Argyll and Sutherland Highland Regiment in 1915. He transferred, while in France, to the Royal Engineers, and was gassed near Calais in 1916. The effects of the gassing he felt for the rest of his life. He graduated after the Great War with a B.Sc. degree at London University and obtained his Teacher’s Certificate. He taught for some years at Heversham Grammar School, before emigrating to Rhodesia in 1929. Mr. Anderson taught at Umtali, Prince Edward and Chaplin Schools before joining the Bulawayo Technical School Staff in 1945, where he remained for 14 years. He was housemaster of Russell House for several years, was in charge of the Rhodes Street Branch in 1958/59, and acted as headmaster on five occasions. Mr. Anderson was an effective teacher of science, and was involved in many school activities, including dramatics and swimming. He was responsible for the renovation and maintenance of the ex-R.A.F. swimming pool which now bears his name. Mr. Anderson lived in Bulawayo during his retirement and died in 1975.
Became the School’s fourth deputy headmaster having been on the staffs of Northlea School and the old Heany Teachers’ Training College. Mr. Lambert was born in Durban in 1915 and attended Durban High School at which he became a prefect in 1931. He gained a B.Sc. in mathematics which became his main teaching subject, and chemistry, at Natal University, and obtained his Higher Education Diploma in 1935. He taught at Maritzburg College until his attestation into the South African Army Special Signals Services (Radar) in 1940. Mr. Lambert served in North Africa and Italy, attaining the rank of Captain. After the war, he taught at Estcourt High School and emigrated to Rhodesia in 1956. Mr. Lambert was housemaster of Russell House whilst at Gifford, and his tenure of office was characterized by considerable drive and energy. He left the School in April, 1962, to become headmaster of Thornhill High School, Gwelo. Mr. Lambert is at present headmaster of Mount Pleasant High School, Salisbury.
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Stanley Haig McLOUGHLIN
Served as deputy head from May, 1962 to April, 1968. “Uncle Mac”, as he was affectionately known, was born in Uniondale, Cape Province, and attended Uniondale High School at which he matriculated. He attended Rhodes University where he obtained a B.Sc., majoring in botany and zoology, and a U.E.D. Mr. McLoughlin developed such a love of mathematics, however, that he spent his career teaching the subject which had been his favourite at school. He taught at Selborne College, East London, from 1942 to 1944, and emigrated to Rhodesia later that year when he was appointed to the staff of Umtali High School. He moved to the Technical School in 1948, and remained on the staff for 20 years. Mr. McLoughlin’s great interest outside the classroom was rugby, and he coached many highly successful first XV teams. He is specially proud of the first ever tour by a Gifford side to South Africa; the team beat all their opponents in Johannesburg. “Uncle Mac” was superintendent of Johnson House and later, a much-loved housemaster of Newman House. He now lives in East London, Cape Province.
Johan Franzoa HERBST
“Frank” Herbst was appointed to Gifford as deputy headmaster in September, 1968, and left the school in December, 1969 to become a lecturer in Afrikaans at the Bulawayo Teachers’ College, at which institution he has remained. Born and educated at primary school level in Fort Victoria, Mr. Herbst completed his secondary school education at Boshof High School, Orange Free State in 1946. At high school he was an outstanding rugby player — he captained the first XV — and was also a fine athlete. He graduated from Stellenbosch University with a B.A. degree and Secondary Teachers’ Diploma, his major subjects being Afrikaans, Netherlands and history. His service prior to his arrival at Gifford was at MiIton~ Umtali and Northlea High Schools. Whilst at Gifford, Mr. Herbst was fully occupied as deputy headmaster and housemaster of Russell House, but retained his interest in rugby, cricket and athletics, all of which he enthusiastically coached in all the schools at which he taught. He finds his present work challenging, but misses the closer contact with young people that school life provides.
Reginald Alan FURBER
Appointed as Gifford’s seventh deputy head in May, 1970, he is now the second longest serving member in this post. Born in Bulawayo in 1936, he went to Milton Junior and Milton High Schools, and at the latter he was Head Boy in 1954. In the same year, he was awarded the coveted Sword of Honour as the best cadet officer in the Federation. He attended Rhodes University and obtained his B.A. and U.E.D. at that institution. After teaching history at Hillfield College, Canada for two years, he returned to Rhodesia, and has taught at Que Que and Cranborne High Schools, at which he held various posts, including O.C. Cadets, master-in-charge of geography, acting deputy headmaster, etc. Since his arrival at Gifford, Mr. Furber has acted as headmaster on three occasions, directed several major school theatrical productions, including the winning play, The Trial of Mary Dugan, in the 1976 A.R.T.S. Schools’ Drama Festival, and involved himself in the majority of the School’s activities and functions. He is currently Editor of The Bee Hive, and has a special interest in sixth form activities and the cultural side of the extramural programme.
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THEY SERVED WELL
After conducting an exercise of research into past magazines and other reference material, it was revealed that more than 220 teachers served the School from 1927. This number does not include the 33 members-of-staff who are currently with us. Stalwarts who have served for ten years or longer are remembered below.
Mr. A. C. Vaughan, 1927-1951
“Daddy” Vaughan joined the staff when the School opened, and except for six months at Milton, spent the whole of his teaching career of twenty-four years at the School teaching English, geography and civics. From 1929 until 1950, he edited the school magazine; for many years he was also housemaster of Whitworth House, and had charge of the School’s funds account. He ran the debating society and library, took an interest in dramatics, and was treasurer of the War Memorial Fund for four years. Thus he was largely responsible for the construction of the War Memorial which was unveiled as part of the School’s twenty-first anniversary celebrations in 1948. For his efforts in this connection, Mr. Vaughan was made an honorary life vice-president of the Old Technicians’ Association. He retired to Durban where in 1953 he died.
Mr. T. M. Shand, 1927-1953
Tim Shand joined the staff six months after the School had opened; after having served the School for over thirty-five years, he was transferred to the Bulawayo Technical College in January 1953. He taught woodwork, and had an interest in dramatics. Ultimately he became deputy principal of the Evening Department. Mr. Shand took a keen interest in the Old Technicians’ Association of which he was vice-president from 1948 until he retired.
Mr. H. A. Pingstone, 1930-1962
Harry Pingstone joined the staff as an engineering Instructor and soon proved himself to be a highly competent and meticulous craftsman. In 1930 to adorn the grounds at the Rhodes Street School, he designed and constructed a pair of wrought-iron gates and a sundial. Later, assisted by Mr. Clubb, Mr. Pingstone made a fine bell for Russell House, and both he and Mr. Ness made the indicator board for the annual inter-house competition, a board which is now mounted in the entrance foyer of the Hall. According to Mr.H. J. Sutherby, “He was utterly single-minded. Practical engineering was his hobby as teaching it was his profession. He set a very high standard to which not every boy could attain, but few who came under his instruction left without having been touched by his genius.” Mr. Pingstone was Housemaster of Whitworth House for some years, and the starter of the athletics sports in the late forties. After thirty-two years’ service, he retired in December 1962.
Capt. F. A. Bailey, 1933-1954
Capt. Bailey joined the staff in 1933 as P.T. instructor and had an immediate impact on the sporting activities of the School. He had an energising effect on the first cricket team for the first few years, and in addition coached athletics, gymnastics and rugby. He took a keen interest in the cadet unit which he joined in 1937, and of which he was the commanding officer from 1946 till he retired. In June 1954, Capt. Bailey was awarded the Efficiency Decoration for his many years of service with the School’s cadet unit.
Mr. E. J. C. Bacon, 1934-1954
Mr. Bacon taught engineering in the mining department until he was transferred to the Technical College in July 1954. He always took a keen interest in the welfare of the boarders, and became superintendent of Heyman House in 1947, then of Russell House in 1950, and was the first housemaster of Newman House after that hostel was opened in July 1 951. In addition, he acted as deputy headmaster in 1952, was chairman of the School’s Engineering Society for a time, was the School’s squash representative on the Old Technicians’ Committee, and was housemaster of Dalton House in 1951 when the Gifford Trophy was won for the first time. Mr. Bacon was in charge of rugby and cricket for some years, and it was while he coached the first rugby team that the School won the Honey Cup for two successive years, namely 1940 and 1941, and that rugby colours were introduced in 1936.
Mr. W. S. Penfold, 1935-1945
Mr. Penfold joined the staff as a science teacher. He was a resident master in Heyman House after that hostel had opened at the beginning of 1936. During his ten years at the School, he was of great assistance in promoting school games, particularly soccer and tennis, until he was transferred to Chaplin High School at the end of the second term in 1945.
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Mr. S. Higham, 1935-1964
Mr. “Sid” Higham joined the staff in 1935 as the principal of the mining department which was started that year, and he was closely associated with all its activities until the department was closed at the end of 1 961. It was largely owing to his enthusiasm and skill that the department made such a notable contribution to the country’s development. It was he who, with Mr. Beak, surveyed the South Field, now known as the Sutherby Field. Mr. Higham was acting housemaster of Main Hostel in 1938 while Mr. Farrell was on leave, and later he became superintendent of Heyman House until 1945. An August 1961 Mr. Higham, officially retired after twenty-five years’ service, although he stayed on at School for a further two years.
Mr. W. H. Beak, 1937-1961
Mr. Beak was an instructor in the mining department; he was a member of the School’s grounds committee for many years and as such he assisted Mr. Higham in surveying the South Field, now the Sutherby Field.
Mr. R. W. Haigh, 1937-1953
Mr. Haigh served the School for sixteen years before being transferred to the Bulawayo Technical College in January 1 953. At various times he was in charge of swimming, water-polo, and soccer. He is probably best remembered for his great interest in colour photography, which he developed to a fine art. On several occasions he entertained the boarders of Heyman and Johnson Houses with coloured films on a variety of subjects, particularly African life and Rhodesian scenery. At the annual School concert and prizegiving in 1943 and again at the prize-giving in 1944, Mr. Haigh showed films portraying the general activities of the School.
Mr. J. A. C. Houlton, 1938-1950
Mr. Houlton left the school in 1950 to become a housemaster at Prince Edward High School. During his eleven years here, he showed his versatility both in the classroom, where he taught English, French and Mathematics, and out of school, where he took an active part in the cadet unit and the dramatic society, besides being the business manager of the school’s magazine. Early in his career at Gifford, he was in charge of cricket and he coached soccer. He was superintendent of bth Johnson and Heyman Houses. After becoming the Regional Director of Education, Mr. Houlton was the guest speaker at Speech Night in June 1960.
Mr. D. M. Clubb, 1940-1951
Mr. Clubb was a woodwork teacher at the School till 1951 when he left for Milton High School. He was a resident master in Russell House during his first year at the School, and it is recorded in the magazine of that year that “His Saturday evening sing-songs, with guitar accompaniment added greatly to the gaiety of the House”. He took a keen interest in boxing, and for a time was in charge of the sport.
Mr. J. M. Buchanan, 1945-1959
“Bucky” as he came to be known universally, was the senior woodwork master who very soon became the mainstay of cricket and rugby at the School, and was in charge of both the major sports for many years. Not only did he have great gifts as a coach, but he was no mean performer himself as he played both cricket and rugby for Rhodesia and the Old Technicians’ Association after having had a distinguished sporting career in Port Elizabeth. In addition to all this, Mr. Buchanan gave many years of valuable service to the School’s finance and grounds committees, and took a very keen interest in all the activities of the School.
Mr. C. E. de Wet, 1946-1959
Chris de Wet was the senior Afrikaans master at the School for a number of years. He spent nearly all of his career at the School in the hostel: he was a resident master in Johnson House for ten years, and later housemaster of Russell House for two years. Mr. de Wet coached cricket and rugby, including the first XV and was for two seasons in charge of rugby.
Mr. C. D. Cowan, 1938-1968
It would be correct to say that Mr. Charles Cowan was one of the great schoolmasters and housemasters of Gifford. He came to the School at the beginning of the third term in 1938, and for some time taught in both the Day and Evening Departments. He taught building construction, carpentry and joinery, metalwork, mechanics and technical-drawing. He was a resident master in Main Hostel until 1941, after which he acted as superintendent of Johnson House for two terms in 1948; he was housemaster of Newman House from July 1954 to December 1955; he was superintendent of Johnson House from January 1956, until the end of 1960 when the hostel was transferred to the Bulawayo Technical College; finally, he was housemaster of Russell House from September 1962 until September 1968. Mr. Cowan was acting deputyheadmaster for six months in 1953, and master-
in-charge of the Russell House Branch, or South Branch, from January 1958. Mr. Cowan coached cricket, rugby, athletics, and tennis at various times. He was housemaster of Dalton House from 1954 until 1956, when he became housemaster of Faraday House until he retired at the end of 1968 after twenty-one years at the School. He was due to rejoin the staff the following year as a temporary teacher, but died tragically after a climbing accident in the Matopos in December 1968. Mr. Cowan is above all else, remembered for his gentleness, modesty, efficiency and integrity.
Mr. D. B. Dyssell, 1947-1960
“Des” Dysell left the staff after thirteen years’ service to become deputy-headmaster of Lord Malvern High School. He is remembered chiefly for his efforts in school boxing which he took over after his arrival. During the long period that he was in charge of boxing, the standard of boxing in the School was very high, and “Tech” boxers established a reputation for being clean, sporting winners and game losers. He was also associated with the cadet corps as a lieutenant.
Mr. W. M. Ness, 1948-1967
“Jock” Ness joined the staff in March 1948 as a woodwork teacher and left for Northlea High School, where he is still teaching, at the end of the first term in 1967. Mr. Ness assisted with boxing for a short period, but his main sporting interest was soccer, a sport he actively coached. During his eighteen years at the School, Mr. Ness also spent countless hours on constructing sets for dramatic productions, often almost singlehanded. He was also the stage manager on several occasions, notably for Ivanhoe in 1962, H.M.S. Pinafore in 1963 and The Naked Island in 1965. He also made the prefects’ lectern which is used at assemblies.
Mr. W. J. Sandham, 1948-
“Captain Jack” Sandham joined the staff in March 1948. He retired in 1968, but returned, and happily is still teaching here after twenty eight years. Mr. Sandham came to the School to teach engineering. Since 1959 he has been in charge of the technical department, while in 1966 he acted as deputy headmaster for a term. He joined the School’s cadet corps in 1954, and became the officer commanding on the resignation of Capt. Carlaw, a position he retained until the cadet movement was disbanded in 1968. In June 1966, Capt. Sandham was awarded the Rhodesian Cadet Corps Medal for his long service. It was his position in the cadets that earned Mr. Sandham the soubriquet “Captain Jack”. Mr. Sandham has always taken a keen interest in school sport: he used to coach soccer and at one time was a Rhodesian selector; for many years he was in charge of swimming and water-polo and was on the Matabeleland Swimming Board. He has been the starter of nearly every sports meeting and swimming-gala for the last twenty years or so. He still actively coaches hockey, and was the housemaster of Davy House from 1948 to 1972.
Mr. C. A. Carlaw, 1951-1962
During the eleven years that Mr. Charles Carlaw was at the School, he taught English and later became senior English master. Before he left in August 1962 to become deputy-headmaster of Founders High School, he was the librarian, chairman of the sixth form club for a period, and in charge of the dramatic society. He also took an active interest in the activities of the photographic society. Mr. Carlaw produced and stage managed several dramatic productions over the years, notably Ivanhoe in 1962, which was the first full-length play produced at the School for many years, and his greatest success H.M.S. Pinafore in 1963, which was the first musical production in the School’s history. His other activities included cadets: he was appointed lieutenant in 1952, and in 1955, following the retirement of Capt. Bailey, became officer commanding with the rank of captain. In addition, he was a member of the Rhodesian Schools’ Exploration Society, and took part in two expeditions, one to the lull District and the other to the Limpopo River.
Mr. K. Parry-Hughes, 1952- 1966
Mr. Ken Parry-Hughes was the senior mathematics master at the School and when he left in 1966 it was to take a post at the now defunct Sixth Form College. He took over tennis soon after his arrival; he assisted with swimming, and he also coached soccer.
Mr. W. A. Anderson, 1953-1971
Mr. “Shorty” Anderson after eighteen years, left on transfer to Milton High School in May, 1971. He taught geography and science. Besides coaching various cricket, rugby and hockey groups, Mr. Anderson was a valuable member of the cadet corps which he joined as a lieutenant soon after his arrival. He took a great interest in the activities of the School’s Christian Union, and for many years its members gained much from his spiritual guidance. Mr. Anderson will long be remembered for his robust support at First XV rugby matches which he rarely missed.
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Mr. E. R. Lafrentz, 1953-
“Laffy” or “Mac” Lafrentz joined the staff in January, 1953 to teach engineering-workshop practice, and from 1962 to 1970 was in charge of workshops. In 1956 he put his scouting experience to good stead when he revived the School scout troop; four years later he saw the completion of the Scout Den on the south side of the gymnasium block, and this was in active use until the troop was disbanded in 1963. He was also at one stage the careers master. “Mac” used to coach the second Xl and later assisted with junior groups. He was a housemaster of Dalton House from 1962 to 1972. Over the years, Mr. Lafrentz has constructed many items of equipment for the School: the following are just a few examples which serve to show how varied his contributions have been — fittings for the Ron Pate Pavilion, basketball posts, and racks for stage-lighting.
Mr. J. Hotz, 1955-1967
Mr. John Hotz, who taught mathematics and mechanics, joined the staff in April, 1955 and left on transfer to Hamilton at the end of the first term in 1967. He was respected for his organising ability: he ran numerous school dances, raffles and fund-raising activities for projects such as the building of the Anderson Pool changerooms; he started a private bursary fund, and raised the funds which enabled the first XV to tour East London and Border in April, 1964. Another of his projects was raising funds for the Ron Pate Cricket Pavilion.
Mr. J. P. French, 1955-1973
Mr. Jack French joined the staff in April, 1955, and after eighteen years, he left the School on medical grounds in August, 1973. He taught metalwork until 1969, after which he was moved to technical-drawing. He coached a variety of cricket and rugby teams, and was the business manager of the School’s magazine for many years, He served with the cadet corps first as a lieutenant and after 1965 as a captain.
Mr. B. P. Webb, 1956-
Although he now only teaches English, Mr. Webb in the course of his nineteen years at this School has taught geography and history as well. His service was broken when he spent a year, starting in April, 1970, doing child-care and welfare work at a boys’ home in Johannesburg. Before this, “Tammy” Webb was a resident master for ten years, serving in Newman, Johnson and Russell Houses. In 1963 he was in charge of a dormitory of form one Gifford boys at Hillside Boys’ Hostel, and later acted as housemaster of this hostel for two terms. At one time Mr. Webb was in charge of chess, junior debating, the film club and judo. He has coached a variety of cricket and rugby teams, particularly among the under 13 groups. At present he is in charge of cricket. In 1969, Mr. Webb was appointed master-in-charge of form one pupils, a post he held until the administrative posts at the school were reorganised by the Ministry in 1973.
Mr. D. K. Broster, 1957-1970
Initially Mr. Ken Broster was the School’s physical education instructor, but later he taught geography and became master-in-charge of this department. He was a most versatile sports-coach and had great organising ability: he was in charge of athletics for six years and coached the second Xl cricket team. Mr. Broster was also master-incharge of basketball for twelve years, and in 1959 the School played its first season of competitive basketball. He was, in addition, master-in-charge of hockey for seven years. Further, Mr. Broster soon after his arrival, joined the cadet unit as a lieutenant, and was promoted to the rank of captain in 1965. For the years 1969, 1970 Mr. Broster was one of the two staff representatives on the P.T.A. In 1969 he became Housemaster of Russell House, and also in 1969 was appointed to be in charge of the upper echelons of the school, a post he held until he left in 1970 to go to Umtali Boys’ High School. He was acting deputy headmaster on three occasions in 1968, 1969 and 1970.
Mr. R. W. Pate, 1960-
During the past sixteen years, Mr. Ron Pate has proved to be a great asset to the School, and has become respected for his excellent skills in building, cabinet-making and craftmanship. He has, for example, made several stringed instruments which are equal to the best available, and is a member of the Bulawayo Philharmonic Orchestra, and has been involved in pratically every construction project at the School since his arrival; for example, he assisted with the construction of the Scout Den in 1960, made the headmaster’s lectern, the honours boards in the hall, and recently a fine pedestal for Mr. Gifford’s bust. Mr. Pate’s crowning achievement was the cricket pavilion which was aptly named after him. This
project was started in 1964, and with the assistance of Mr. E. R. Lafrentz, Mr. J. Hotz and the boys of 58, the pavilion was completed in 1968. In addition he has constructed the properties and sets for every school production since 1962, and the tableaux for the annual carol concerts.
Mrs. L. du Preez, 1962-
Mrs. Lourine du Preez joined the staff in September, 1962, when she was the only lady on the teaching staff. She has taught Afrikaans for the fourteen years she has been at Gifford, and from 1966 she has been in charge of the department. Soon after her arrival, Mrs. du Preez took over the chess club which has developed into one of the most successful cultural activities at the School. To her also goes the credit for the several attractive aloe gardens in the School grounds.
Mrs. E. S. P. Clelland, 1963-
Initially Mrs. Clelland joined the staff in August, 1963 to teach mathematics for one term: that was thirteen years agog She has taken remedial classes in the afternoons and has done much to assist pupils experiencing difficulties with mathematics. She has assisted with the library and has taken tennis. She acted as teacher-in-charge of the mathematics department for two terms prior to April, 1972.
Mr. R. T. McGeoch 1967-
Since being posted to Gifford in 1967, Mr. McGeoch has been in charge of English. In that time he has coached most sports, the exceptions being swimming and water polo; at present he is in charge of hockey. He feels, though, his greatest contribution has been in the non-sporting sphere: at one stage he had the title of master-incharge of cultural activities, in which capacity he reorganised and refurbished the library and recatalogued the books according to the Dewey system. He initiated the revival of dramatics at the School on the construction of the hall, and produced the first major play in it, namely Arms and the Man. In the following year, he produced Both Ends Meet (1972). He founded the Sixth Form Forum in 1969 and sponsored the renewed interest in debating among the juniors. At one stage he was editor of The Bee Hive and was the first Drone; he has edited all the School’s magazines since 1967, and is currently editor of The Honeycomb. Since the inception of the Merit and Honours awards in 1967, he has been closely associated with these awards. He has been housemaster of Whitworth (1971-1972) and Faraday (1973) games houses, and of Newman Hostel (1973-1975). He also served as one of the staff representatives on the P.T.A. from 1968 to 1970.
Mr. and Mrs. S. H. Wiggington, 1953-1969
“Wiggie” became the caretaker of the Rhodes Street School in 1953, and two years later of the Russell House Branch, at which time Mrs. Wiggington became the cook-matron. Mr. Wiggington used to play professional cricket for Leicestershire so his arrival here was a great asset: he assisted with coaching, and within a season or two provided excellent wickets. Mr. Wiggington’s main achievement was the levelling and extension of the Cowan Field, a task which kept him busy for nearly two years.
Mrs. Wiggington was a good confectioner, whose cricket teas in particular were always appreciated.
Mr. P. T. H. Crandon, 1952-1962
Mr. “Tommy” Crandon was the bursar at the School and became widely respected for his competency in managing the School’s accounts, while his affable, pleasant personality gained him many friends.
Miss H. Jayes, 1948-1968
Miss Jayes was the Russell House sick-bay matron till 1954, when she transferred to Newman House where she remained until she retired at the end of 1968 after twenty years of conscientious service.
Mrs. K. A. A. Chapman, 1954-1967
Mrs. Chapman succeeded Miss Jayes as sickbay matron of Russell House from where she retired at the end of 1967 after thirteen years of loyal service.
Mrs. R. McNamara, 1950-1960
Mrs. McNamara became the cook-matron in Johnson House in 1950, and after the hostel was transferred to the Bulawayo Technical College at the end of 1960, she remained there for several years.
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