School characters (1)
supports the Earl Haig Poppy Fund each year, and also
the Malta Polio
Fund. A collection of £14 15s. Od. was made for the former
Autumn Term, and for the latter in the Summer Term. A number
of 6th Form girls helped with the selling of flags for this fund.
At Christmas £11
was sent to B.F.B.S. for the "Wireless For the Blind
Fund", in return for air-time. Chris. Lawton did a Tal
The school also
sent £10, at Easter, to "The Talking Book for the
Blind Fund." This Fund provides recorded books, and tape recorders on
The Royal Malta Library in Valletta.
One of the
highlights of the year was the "Miles For Development
Walk" organised by the Social Action Movement. This took place on
November 15th and
the entrants walked for twenty miles across Malta.
Thirty two Tal Handaq pupils joined the walk, and we were the only
school from which
all those taking part covered the whole distance.
The amount collected from sponsors was £153. 5s. 10d.
We would like to
thank those who have given either their time or
money during the
dance, which was held on the 17th. December and had The
Boys' in attendance, turned out to be a great success. But
needless to say, it took an enormous amount of organisation
from all departments
of the school,
which Debby Bradley and myself talked into helping. I would
mention many for their help and hard work — Mr. Ward for
printing the tickets, the Domestic Science teachers for the use of their rooms
advice about the quantity of food needed, Mr. Singleton for
magnificently painted wood scenery for a background for the
and for the use of numerous materials for decorating the
hall, Mr. Plant
supply of minerals, Mr. Wright and Lieutenant Commander
advice in the organisation. There are so many pupils who
so I hope they forgive me for not mentioning them all by
name. I would also like to thank Debby for her help in
everything, Elaine, Cherry, Bev
and Sarah who
buttered countless slices of bread and stuck endless
cheese and pineapple on sticks; Adrian and his helpers who
set up a lovely lighting arrangement with spotlights and numerous tinted
those who sold seemingly endless raffle tickets, enabling us
to charge a minimum entrance fee and those who decorated the
hall and made table decorations. After all this hard work
put in by so many, it led
to a successful and very enjoyable evening for everyone.
School Characters (2)
11th NOVEMBER 1970
If being first
in the field is worthy of commendation then the
annual prizegiving on Wednesday, 11th November, was a noteworthy
His Excellency Sir Duncan Watson, it was the first
prizegiving at which he had officiated; it was also the first
report given by
Instructor Commander Law since taking up his appointment at Tal
Handaq; and it was the first senior prize-day attended by
Captain H. Brierley in his capacity as Officer-in-Charge of
After the Flag
Officer Malta, Rear Admiral D.G. Kent had welcomed
the guests, the Senior Choir gave a rendering of "Linden Lea". This was
followed by the Headmaster's report.
Headmaster's Report —
Mr. Chairman, Your Excellency, Ladies and Gentlemen,
May I begin by
echoing Admiral Kent's words of welcome and adding
the school's own very warm welcome to Sir Duncan and Lady Watson
on this their
first visit to Tal Handaq. We are also glad to welcome the
Heads of Services: Admiral Kent himself, known rather
quaintly as the
Authority, and Mrs. Kent, and Brigadier Ward. We are
very sorry that
Air Commodore Winn is prevented from being here by
operational commitments but we are delighted that Mrs. Winn has been
come. The Heads of Services are not only responsible for producing the parents who produce the majority of our children but they and
Services give us tremendous support and assistance for which we
are extremely grateful. I should also like to welcome Captain and
Mrs. Brierley on
the occasion of Captain Brierley's first Prize Day as
Officer in Charge Schools although they, like my wife and
me, are no
strangers to Tal Handaq Prize Days. And finally may I just as
welcome all our other guests, whether you are here by virtue of
your office or your parenthood. We are delighted to see you all.
It's a bit
difficult for a new Headmaster to report on a year for which he
wasn't mainly responsible, when any good things that happened
were in spite of him not because of him, but the occasion does allow me to say
things which, for one reason or another I shan't be able to say
Handaq is a very good school with a very high reputation. I
can support the first of these statements from the report of Her Majesty's
who visited the school last Autumn and who said "Some teaching
of distinction was observed" and "a significant number of the
assistant staff are teachers of more than ordinary competence".
that Tal Handaq is "a happy community in which good relationships
flourish. The devotion of the Headmaster and staff to the
and educational needs of the pupils who pass through it is
I can vouch for
its reputation from the comments of parents, both
those arriving who all seem to have had glowing reports of us, and those
many of whom are kind enough to make a particular point of
thanking us for helping their children to make so much more
than in any other school.
These are, of
course, tributes to a number of people, not least to my
predecessor, Captain Malkin, whose dedication to and knowledge of the
in the school was tremendous in spite of the extra burden of his
duties as Officer in Charge of all Service schools in Malta, Naples and
Tripoli. I should like to couple a tribute to him with one to
which he handed over to me and I should like to take
this opportunity of publicly thanking them for the support and encouragement
they have given me in my early months.
I am sure they
will all understand if on this occasion I single out one
name for special mention, that of Miss Yule. She has been teaching here
years and has been senior mistress for 14 of them, and there can
be no doubt that one of the main events of the school year
was the recognition
of her service by the award of an M.B.E. in the Birthday Honours
are tremendously proud of her and I for one cannot envisage how
I am going to get on without her when she leaves at the end of the year,
as it now
seems she really will do, after our two reprieves. She is the
one bit of continuity we have in an all-too-rapidly
And lastly, of
course, this reputation is a tribute to the children. You
can't have a good school without good pupils and don't let anyone tell
is anything wrong with Service children. The best are as good
as you will find anywhere: the worst are ghastly, but I
have to admit that
have more to put up with.
But I must tell
you something about the past year, beginning with what for us is
the vital topic of numbers. Last year's numbers, surprisingly
enough, were consistently higher than those of the year before,
starting at 785 and remaining above 750 for most of the year.
we began with 740 but since the departure of the 3rd Battalion
the Parachute Regiment we are already down to 700. By all the rules, it looks
by early 1972 we shall be down to about 630, at which level
we hope we
may stabilize again. Seven years ago we were over 1,000.
(Now you begin to see why we are down to a Commander on this job
instead of a
Captain!) But seriously, I must warn you that smaller numbers
mean fewer staff and a possible consequent restriction on
options that we
can offer, although we are doing all we can to keep any
to a minimum. So far there have been no changes in curriculum or in the general planning of the school, which remain as
described last year.
numbers we need to look at examination results because,
perhaps unfortunately, these tend to be what the academic standards
of a school are judged by.
Last summer we
had 50 'A' level subject passes (from 30 candidates)
in an academic sixth form with about 22 pupils in each of the two years.
about the same number of passes as last year but from 12 fewer
candidates. The quality of passes was not quite so good, as
we had only
two Grade A's and
five B's. As far as we know four of those who left
went on to
Universities and four to Training Colleges.
At 'O' level we
must think in terms of a total fifth form strength of
about 80, covering the whole ability range, equivalent to a grammar
fifth form of about 27, although we widen our 'O' level entry
We had 263
subject passes in June (24 more than last year, but the
number of candidates was higher too) and 53 in the preceding November.
As you can
see from your programmes 26 candidates achieved five or
more subject passes in the year. We haven't listed their total scores.
have passed more subjects in the preceding year.
In the C.S.E.
examinations 88 candidates took 205 papers, only 11
papers being ungraded. Last year 43 out of 277 were ungraded so the
rate has improved, but we only achieved 16 Grade 1
passes (equivalent to 'O' level) compared with 25 last year.
therefore, our exam results were up to standard in
slightly down in quality, and I hope there are about 170 of
front of me who are going to make quite sure that I don't say
that again next year. Your aim must be to make your year the
No mention of
examinations would be complete without a word of
thanks to the
Director of Education for Malta, Miss Mortimer, for the help
her department in organising our GCE examinations. At the last
minute Miss Mortimer was unfortunately prevented from coming
we are very glad to see Mr. Mangion, one of her Assistant Directors.
There is a
tremendous liaison between the Deputy Headmaster and the
Registrar of Examinations, Mr. Attard (also here today), and we really are
for the load that is taken off our shoulders.
academic side I now turn to other activities, and I remind
you that these are all admirably reported in the school Magazine where
read about them in more detail. Copies are still available at
the bargain price of 2s. 6d. each.
Smaller numbers, particularly in the upper part of the
school, make it more difficult to maintain our
traditionally high standards
but we haven't done too badly. We have fielded school sides in most
sports and they
have done remarkably well in the face of what is often the
formidably heavyweight opposition provided by the adult Service
leagues in which we are forced to play. Rugby is a case in point and our
year's team was a strong one. Perhaps their best reward was the
success of the A team in winning the Plate Competition in the Malta
are times when fitness tells.
Other sports in
which we entered the inter-Service Leagues were
Basketball, Cricket and Ladies' Tennis. In Hockey the main event
6-a-side competition in which we entered no fewer than 6 girls'
and two boys' teams. I can safely say it wouldn't have been the
same without us.
In Athletics and
Cross Country the competition is almost entirely
Maltese, and of a very high standard. Gone are the days when we could
before us in these events, but perhaps this is just as well.
Nevertheless our teams acquitted themselves well and the main successes
the Under 15 team in winning their section of the Alpine Sports
Club Cross Country League and the Senior side in winning the Malta
National Under 19
In a small island,
where opposition is hard to find, our own inter-house competitions assume greater significance and these were keenly
in as many as 17 sports, a record number for us. The great
majority of these games, at least in the major sports, are played on
Saturday mornings and I am sure I am speaking for the boys and
their parents, as well as for myself when I say a big "thank
you" to those dedicated members of staff who turn out on
Saturday mornings to
run these games.
activity is not confined to the games field and our Duke of
Edinburgh work has also continued. A party went to Sicily in the Easter
and completed the necessary expedition work for 1 Gold and
3 Bronze awards. Sailing has also continued regularly and now that the
dinghies, so kindly lent by the Garrison Sailing Club, have
finally got too long in the tooth, we are fortunate in haying been able
use of Naval Bosun dinghies. We are grateful indeed to H.M.S.
ST. ANGELO and to the Garrison and Naval Sailing
Clubs for the help
they give us with
this activity and without which we could not carry it
Other and less
physically strenuous extra-mural activities have included those of the Literary and Debating Society, the very successful
operatic productions of Menotti's "Amahl and the Night Visitors" and Gilbert and Sullivan's "Trial By Jury" and an
Show. Those of you who attended the Summer Open Day will have seen,
besides examples of activities already mentioned samples of the
very-high-standard work done by our Art, Craft, Domestic
Woodwork departments and you will not have been surprised
to see on display the shield we won for being the school with
performance at the 1969 National Exhibition of Children's Art in
On the material
side the main improvements during the past twelve
months are the new car park, which many of you have used today, the
audio-visual room or cinema, which at long last, after some
tribulations, is just about ready for use, and the extension to the Chemistry
was begun during the recent summer holidays and is now almost
complete. But besides these more obvious projects the processes
of modernisation, improvement and general maintenance go on
time and in this respect I really can't speak too highly of the
M.P.B.W. and particularly of the always helpful, sympathetic and
cooperative attitude of their staff under the leadership of the Depot Superintendent,
Mr. Shepherd, whom we are particularly glad to see here to day.
difficulties there are, are certainly not of his making.
I must also
mention Mr. Depasquale, our Site Foreman, who gets asked to do
just about everything under the sun, but never complains.
Credit for the
present generally excellent appearance of the school must
be shared between
them and the school's own industrial staff who, under
the guidance of Mr. Hayman, the school Warden, maintain the gardens,
and buildings in an astonishingly high state of tidiness and
cleanliness, sometimes I'm afraid, working against
I hope a new
Headmaster can be excused for being more interested
in looking forward
than back and I should therefore like to finish by saying
a little about my hopes for and thoughts on the school.
Having been here
before, I was able to give some thought to this
job before I
arrived, but even I was astonished when I realised certain
the end of last term I discovered that over half the pupils in
the school were about to leave at the end of term, to be
largely replaced by
new ones this
term. I checked again yesterday and I find we are already
in the situation
when 292 of our 700 pupils have arrived in the school since the
beginning of September. About 3 in every 7. What can you do
in such a
situation? One thing you can't do is to launch forth into a lot
and advanced educational schemes, because you will never be
able to carry them through for any individual child. But there is a lot
that we can
Our aim is to
prepare every pupil for the day he or she leaves us,
whether to go to a job, a college or another school, and time is all top
we mustn't waste it. We must first, therefore, help the new
pupil to settle down quickly and in this we all play our
part, pupils and staff
children are no objects of curiosity here but they are quickly
One thing we take a pride in doing is adapting to the needs of
the child who has been to innumerable schools — we had one in this term
think, her eighteenth.
We must then get
to know the children and their problems, remembering
that with Service children some schools may not have had the
time or the
patience to do this before. We need to notice quickly if a
child is in the wrong stream or following an unsuitable course. We need
to be in
good communication with parents, particularly the parents of
those who don't seem inclined to work, because education is as
their job as ours and we need to do it together. To this end we
open days this year, so that we don't have to discuss the
on one afternoon.
We need to
provide even better and more continuous careers advice
persuade children and parents of its importance. We have an
invaluable annual visit from
two U.K. Careers Advisory Officers, but parents
seem curiously reluctant to
meet them. We have an expanding school
careers department but I am
not convinced that it is used to the maximum.
It is possible that parents and children don't like the advice
they are given, namely that it is by no means to all young men
and women over 16 that
school still has something to offer. It is unfortunate that in
Malta itself there is
no alternative to school and we need to be at pains
to explain this to parents
before they come out here. Having nothing better
to do is no good reason for staying at school, and those who do
are probably missing
irredeemable opportunities of joining industrial and
other practical and
vocational training schemes at home. Those who do
stay here must be prepared to
work; education is not something that they
can soak up merely by being
here and in Britain they will get no credit for
an extra year at school
unless they have something to show for it in the way of
examination results at the end.
our student leaves to join another school he is sped on his way
by a system which we have improved. It provides advice to the
parents on effecting entry to
a new school with a minimum of delay and a
carefully written transfer
report to enable the pupil to embark at once on
the right curriculum.
And what are
our hopes for him when he leaves? We hope that he
is a good
ambassador for Tal Handaq, that he has developed some pride
school. We hope that other schools will begin to notice the
of Tal Handaq in those better manners, that pride in appearance,
enthusiasm which infects everything he does and that indefinable
spirit with which he faces all difficulties. If these are the
marks of Tal Handaq
will grow even further, and good though it is in Service
is no doubt that at present insufficient is known about us, and
indeed about all Service schools, outside these circles. You,
pupils and the parents, are the ones who can put this right. Our
is in your
Headmaster's report the Junior Choir sang two songs. The
then presented by His Excellency Sir Duncan Watson the
In his address
Sir Duncan claimed that this was the first time he
called upon to speak at a school prize day, and in vain he had
recall his own schooldays for some pertinent remarks. He referred
to the way in which young people today were interested in
the world, but
he felt that it was wrong for them to strive to achieve a
perfection which could not change
everything was perfect,
there could be
nothing new each day.
He referred to
the vast changes taking place in education, with its
that could be puzzling to the layman. The discovery that
taught in streams evoked in his mind a picture of his former
master sitting on a rock in mid-stream, with himself in bathing
concluded his address with the announcement of a future
holiday which was well received by those present.
After a song, "Lift up Your Hearts", by the school, the ceremony
was concluded, and tea was served for guests and parents.
PRIZE LIST 1970
1A1 Jeremy Brine
1A2 Margaret Driscoll
1B Sharon Archer Jane Ratcliffe
1C1 Rikky Milnes
1C2 Linda Eldridge
1C3 Anthony Linford
2A1 Simon Cronin
2B Denise Johnson Ian Springhall
3S Elizabeth Revell
Barraclough Robert Broadway
Harvey Graham Longmire
FIFTH YEAR —
Judith Fletcher Elaine Hoctor
David Metcalfe Hazel Smith
HELP TO SCHOOL
GCE Results Summer 1970
History, British Constitution.
Mathematics, Engineering Drawing, Art.
Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry.
Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry.
English Literature General, History British,
and Foreign, Biology, Human Biology,
English Language, French, Music, Art.
English Language, English Literature General.
English Language, Cookery.
English Literature General, Music.
English Language, Human Biology.
English Language, French.
Literature General, French, Biology,Cookery,
English Language, French.
English Language, French.
English Language, English Literature
Biology, Human Biology,
Language, English Literature
English Literature General, Human Biology.
Literature General, French, History —
and Foreign, Art.
General, Latin, French,
British and Foreign, Chemistry,
English Literature General, History — British
Foreign, Geography, Human Biology,Cookery.
Language, English Literature,Biology,
Literature General, French, History,AdditionalMathematics,Biology,Needlework.
Religious Knowledge, Cookery.
Literature, French, Art.
Biology, Human Biology.
Language, English Literature, HumanBiology.
Literature, French, History, Additional Mathematics,
Language, Geography, Cookery.
Literature, History, Pottery.
Language, English Literature.
Literature General, History — British
Literature General, History — British
Foreign, Commerce, Art.
English Literature Selected, Geology.
English Language, Pottery.
Selected, History — British and Foreign,
Geography, Mathematics, Physics.
English Language, Mathematics,
Physics, Woodwork, Metalwork, Engineering Drawing.
English Literature Selected, History — British
Selected, Additional Mathematics,
English Language, Geography,
English Literature General, French, History-British and Foreign, Geography, Physics, Art.
History — British and Foreign, Art.
English Literature Selected, Geography.
British and Foreign, Commerce.
English Literature Selected, History — British
and Foreign, Mathematics, Commerce.
British and Foreign,
English Literature Selected, History — British
and Foreign, Geography.
German, Engineering Drawing.
Selected, American History,
English Literature General,
American History, Mathematics, Physics, Art.
English Language, History -
Geography, Chemistry, Art.
English Language, Physics.
Selected, History — British and Foreign,
- - British and Foreign.
C.S.E. SUMMER 1970
Mathematics, French, Biology.
Biology, Human Biology.
Mathematics, Human Biology.
Technical Drawing, Physics.
History, Mathematics, Technical
English, Mathematics, Technical
Woodwork, Mathematics, Technical
English, Mathematics, Physics.
Mathematics, Technical Drawing.
English, Physics, Chemistry.
Woodwork, Technical Drawing, Metalwork.
Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry.
Woodwork, Mathematics, Technical Drawing.
Woodwork, Mathematics, Technical Drawing, Metalwork.
Mathematics, Technical Drawing, Metalwork.
Mathematics English, Woodwork, Physics,
Mathematics, English, Physics.
GCE NOVEMBER 1970 ORDINARY LEVEL
Biology, Human Biology.
English Literature, Human Biology.
English Language, Cookery.
English Literature, Geography.
The following passed at the elementary level
STEWART PAULINE SUFFIELD
PITMANS SHORTHAND EXAMINATION
The following passed at the first speed
CERTIFICATE OF PROFICIENCY IN THE USE OF ENGLISH
NORRIS EVAN POTTS
STEPHENSON SUSAN PEYTON
Poems and Essays
THE UNDER SEA
It was like a
black blanket spread over the sea,
And the murky
grey water captured me.
different on the ocean floor
So gentle and
calm and peaceful once more.
storm had gone and all was quiet,
No more noise
and no more riot.
walked the ocean bed
different fish swam over head.
galloped the blue sea waves,
While the crabs
crawled back to their desolate caves.
flowers slept on the rocks.
lettuce shook as if combing its locks.
Then out from
a dark and distant rock
Came a large
octopus with a greedy look.
A crowd of
fish hurry on and pass by more
Why don't they
stop? I wonder why.
was kind to give us the sea.
She gave it a
lot of colour, don't you agree?
Just then my
body reached the Earth's shore,
But I'll go
down to the sea once more.
On a placid day
in the far off north, :
The sea is
edged with a lacy froth. The lace was hard
The lace was
The lace was white
The lace was
It's so far
It's under the
under the sea.
twinkling and shining
sequins and gleaming
diamond, the saphire,
Like string on
The eyes are
the window to the soul,
They are glazed
and beautiful like glass,
They are like
The eyelids are
Pray do not
lose your eyes.
bully that is the age-gap
stunning blows again and again.
Then she backed
to the end of the rope,
strangling herself in an effort to get away from us.
She reared and
screeched in dismay.
She smelled of
the dry bushland.
A true member
of the outback.
Your eyelash like a winking feather,
Your eyelash like a sprig of heather,
Some blonde, some black, some brown, some fair
To match the colour of your hair.
To match your eyes,
To match your size
Your eyelash goes on up and down,
There are two around your crown.
A long green stick
Suddenly springs to life.
With a slither it is off
After its prey,
Weaving in and out
Through the rocks.
Then it stops:
It has spotted its prey.
With a quick dart
It engulfs its prey in its coils.
With one gulp
Its prey is gone.
The snake slithers off.
outline of ships moved
It was a
comfort to know that we were not alone.
was over everything, except the steady hum of the engine.
of being the only one in the world,
'officer of the watch' fidget,
But soon light
came and with it
The throb of a
ship at work.
A PORTRAIT OF AN EYELASH
It is long and thin,
And the colour is black,
It gets in your eye and hurts.
Long or short,
And fat or thin,
The size of it,
Makes no matter,
It's only there,
Fear of darkness, fear of heights,
Fear of strange places or alone at night.
Fear of insects, fear of snakes
Fear of deep water in a shimmering lake.
Fear of thunder, fear of storms,
Fear of strange noises in the early dawn.
A fear of crowds in a busy street
A fear of shadows that we often meet
A fear of fire and losing one's hair,
A fear of doctors and of the dentist's chair.
A fear of some kind is common to all.
Fear concerns all species whether large or small.
Jacqueline Calvert 1AJ
A snake is a colourful band of skin,
It slithers everywhere,
It presents danger to human beings,
So the people had best beware.
For one bite of its fangs is fatal,
Its attack is very fast.
You'd better stay clear of a snake or else,
Its bite could be your last.
MY MORNING RIDE
Groomed, saddled, and mounted we walk down the road.
As we rock from side to side,
His hooves clop along the road as I kick him: now and then
The sun shines through the top of the trees,
But the frost is crisp on the ground.
My breath is like a cloud of mist,
But inside I'm very warm !
But all of a sudden I hear voices in the distance,
They come closer all the time.
But then I see the answer, two girls riding at the gallop,
Their ponies' hooves make a hollow sound on the grass,
Something like thunder.
They shout and scream to each other,
And slowly their voices fade away,
I then come to a ford and trot all the way through it.
It splashes his hooves and all my boots,
But who's to worry?
I'm enjoying myself.
Kerry Bowles 1AJ
The Kingfisher sits on a long thin twig,
Waiting for his dinner to come,
He's in the water.
Here he comes with fish in beak,
Now disappears in the darkness of a hole.
I turn away,
As quick as a flash,
He passes me again,
And sits on the same thin twig,
The lush green grass swaying in the wind,
The young frisky lambs playing,
The mother sheep munching the grass,
And the tiny birds singing.
The trees with their fruitful buds,
Gracefully were bending,
Their arms stretching out afar,
Waving and swaying.
While nearby the cows are nibbling
At the luscious grass.
The blue sky with white patches is
Looking down below
At the birds, the cows, the sheep and lambs,
And to the singing birds
ignited the paper. At first, the flickering flame seemed to
away, then it flared up. The burnt paper shrivelled and dropped,
and blistered, into the waste-bin.
flame writhed and twirled merrily. It danced across the
devouring it greedily. Then came the colours, glowing prettily,
crimson, violet, blue and orange.
flames began to crackle loudly, and they glowed even
before. Then gradually they subsided into a blackened heap
remains, leaving only a spiral of smoke wavering in the air.
called, the master roared,
We'll have no
slackening on board. So pull on hard, you so-called men,
Or you'll be
in the lions den.
The swell was
high, the sea was rough,
And all the
slaves, they'd had enough.
The master was
pushed o'er the side, To die beneath the foaming tide.
HOW TO LOOK AFTER A BUDGIE
budgie is really a miniature parrot and very amusing, especially
when he talks. Most budgies get to love
their owners and enjoy having a
fly around the house about four times a week.
If you own a budgie you must know when and what to feed it on,
how to clean its cage, and many other things.
The first thing is to buy a
You can get budgies in many different colours including blue and
white, pure white, yellow, and other
varieties. I find blue and white the
best. The male birds have a purple or dark blue
strip of skin above their
beak. The females have the colour of their feathers, a
budgie will have a strip of yellow skin above her beak. Never get two
budgies, because if you want your budgie to talk and you have
birds, they will talk to each other in
their own language and will not learn
Always keep your bird's cage clean and healthy, and use
in the bottom of the cage to help to sharpen and trim their
put a bell and a mirror, and maybe a toybird in the cage to keep
company and a ladder for him to climb up and down on. A swing in
cage helps, for at night the bird likes
to perch up high on something.
Feed your bird on the seed that suits him best. To feed your
fill up his dish in the morning, and at night
blow away the empty husks,
and fill up again. Water should be changed twice a day.
Lisa Barlow 1AJ
THROUGH THE EYES OF A MIDGET
It appeared to be a huge opening, and the lower third of the
opening was barricaded by a sort of oblong
box attached to the sides. In
the middle of the box was a space with what seemed to be a
the top of it. The tray formed a bridge across the space in the box. The
whole thing was of a colossal size to me. Drawn by the sound of
glass and voices, I ventured through the space in the box, which
to be a counter. I gasped at what I saw. Two people were opening
and sorting them out. But they were not ordinary people, for to
the peaks of their heads it would have
taken about twenty-two of my
doubles standing on each other's head. At the back of the
was a room, were wooden shelves attached to the wall. On these were
giant glass jars, which held colourful boulders wrapped in what
I thought was transparent paper. One of the giants reached
across, and taking one
of the boulders, unwrapped it and ate
it. Then she drank some liquid out
of a bottle.
Suddenly a bell sounded shrilly.
In terror, I rushed out and took
refuge behind a flower. I was to be
glad I had fled, for more and more of
those giants queued up in front of the opening.
What was it ? The question echoed in my mind.
(A description of Tal Handaq Tuck Shop)
I am awake,
The floor is creaking,
Then suddenly I see a dark shadow,
Lingering near the window.
The night is still and the moon is a soft shining sphere.
I can see it gleaming through the curtains.
The room is desolate except for me and the unknown person.
door swings open on its hinges but there is nobody there.
A ghost, a spook, or Mr. Nobody, but no-one
The wind gives a howl as if it knows how frightened I am.
I hide under the pillow as if terror-stricken.
I dare not move a muscle for fear it might come nearer.
My conscience tells me to ask who is there, but my throat is
Dry and my lips are numb.
Susan Day 1AJ
The princely splendour of one towering in the air,
The mighty pounding of water upon age-old rock,
Shine, slithering slowly through cool sharp turmoil,
Infinite nothing reaching out to fathomless depths,
Nature's own creation,
The piece of paper was ignited. The flames rose up, blue at
heart going yellow at the tips, devouring paper the longer they
grew, twisting and turning upwards towards the sky. The
forbidding flames wriggled
through the air like snakes. Suddenly the flames subsided,
into red hot ashes.
The waste of the devouring dangerous flames floated
gracefully through the air,
descending gracefully to the ground, turning into black
It was becoming increasingly
Difficult to think.
Through a thick haze, I could see
A noise penetrated through my head.
I realised it was the pounding of my heart.
The walls of the room seemed to
Close around me,
Confined, stifling, an eternal hell.
Sweat rolled from my hands
And dropped in little beads
Onto my paper, mingling with the ink.
The haze became clearer
The walls began to expand.
I was writing in a spacious room.
Suddenly, I knew the answer.
Before I could write it down,
A voice cut through the silence,
"Pass your exam papers to the front!"
FRIENDS AND ME
When I look back,
At the friends I used to have,
I realise that
They don't mean a thing to me
As what they did when we were old friends.
I said I'd write,
They did too,
But you forgot them,
They forgot you.
As soon as you were out of sight
You went blank in their minds.
If you happen to meet them again
You find yourselves great friends.
This is how it ends,
But manages to repeat itself over and over again.
THE WEIRD WORLD
The weird wonderful wandering mist
caught the wind and blew an
inn sign swinging, swaying, in the wind.
The small, silent, still city
was engulfed in mist.
Weird and uncouth shapes rose and fell,
The world was silent,
Not a soul Was
P. Tumey 2C1
SHADOWS OF THE PAST
Six centuries of
age burdened the tree,
And now in death it buckled to the knee.
The wind made mournful noises as it went:
heard this tale as if heaven-sent.
The tree saw the
Blackfeet fight on the land
Bravely with the northerners hand to hand.
they lost and saw their beloved ones killed
And the crops
destroyed on the land they tilled.
And similar to a
dream the voice did pause,
As if bringing from unfathomable stores
More news of the
tree — and the wait was long.
then again continued in the song -
And the tree saw the Indians slaughter
The buffalo as
they came to water,
In huge herds
down from the hills to the plains -
Going on for ever
like giant chains.
But the tree could
not see past the mountains
From whence the
white-maned clouds leapt like fountains,
The voice trailed away, permeated
By the shifting
of the log-side embers.
A kite flies like a bird in the sky
And it soars through the air like a bird
And it goes from side to side like grasses blown by the wind.
One minute I hear children cry,
Then a dog barks and a cat purrs; The church
bells mingle in my ears,
With the sound of angry voices.
Suddenly a car screeches, a dog yelps;
That's what you'll always hear.
His tail wags feebly,
As a person passes by,
And the glassy eyes look upwards to plead.
They plead for a pat,
They plead for a friend,
They plead for a home to have,
But mostly they plead for life.
drag in the dust,
As they feel they
From following a
person they turn and wish.
They wish for a
They wish for a
They wish for a
home to have,
But mostly want a
for skin and bones,
They die a slow
They die without a pitying pat,
They die without a
They die without a
They die without a
JOURNEY INTO SPRING
Clouds roll away into the distance.
The sun begins to pour warmth
Once again onto the earth. Life crawls
back into being.
Birds, all kinds of birds,
Feed their new-born young.
Coot, moorhen and dabchick —
On water they live,
While sand martins seek protection
In their sculptured homes.
Crows, blown across the sky
Like burnt and blackened paper,
Seek for something to satisfy
Lives filled with agony and pain,
As flesh and body are eaten away.
lice it feeds and starts to drain
All life away to utter decay.
As lice if taken off the scalp
Hit again, and again, and again
So mashes life to a bloody pulp.
Oh disease! We beg you to refrain.
It bites and sucks at tender organs
Even cries of anguish fill the air,
The heart and brain become tender, raw ones,
And through all disease never leaves its lair
Even though pain runs through every breath
Disease only lets go for death.
down a lane,
It looks as if
it's going to rain.
Then the rain
begins to fall,
So hard that it
will soak us all.
Come on Nell,
Got to get past
Dead Man's Bell.
Galloping down the little lane
Getting wet from
all the rain.
Overtaking little streams
than in my dreams.
At last we're home
and in the yard.
Steaming and wet —
for the rain fell hard.
We're home and in
the dry at last,
But it was fun
while going fast!!
THE BLACK CAT
In the dark night it creeps,
Its green glaring eyes
if it had no body.
In the light
He's black as night
For he is hungry.
During the day
He loves to play,
But sometimes he's a pest.
There are lots of animals
But I like my Black Cat
E. Armstrong 3G
The farmhouse was a victorian-style manor,
The windows seemed like glassy eyes
Staring out into the evening dusk.
There was a certain beauty about the place,
Which was made even more apparent by the stately surroundings.
The fields around were now more still and silent,
Than they were at any other part of the day.
The tall ash trees to the left of the
Rippling brook were swaying silently to and fro in the breeze,
Whilst the clouds overhead performed their own special magic,
Their shapes changing all the time and then moving swiftly by,
As though moving to some unknown destination.
To the right, the beauty was blocked out
By a small cottage,
An old reminder to many, of the olden days,
When the house had once been full
Of laughing voices and other happy sounds.
And there it stands still,
In all its great and splendid grounds.
Looking more gaunt and frightening now,
Than it ever did before,
With just the rustling of the swaying branches,
the rippling of the ardent brook,
To remind it of the past.
1. Guns blaze, men fall. No
none at all.
2. Some dead,
'till another dies.
3. Men rise,
for them all.
4. Will war last? will peace come?
PRISONER OF WAR
352 Squadron, Scramble !!
I ran with my friends to the planes.
We took off, to search and destroy the enemy.
There I see them on the left
Twenty planes in all.
We change direction,
Get them in our sights,
Fire! That's one.
I'll go after that one over there.
"Nick! Behind!" My pal calls over the radio,
But too late, my plane's on fire.
Must bale out, fast.
Loosen the hatch, press the ejector.
Hurry! Hurry! At last, I'm away
Out of the fight.
There goes another one, and another. Good old 352!!
Oof! I hit the ground with a bump.
Suddenly I'm surrounded by them
Oh God! Now what?
They want me to get up.
Wonder where they're leading me.
I look up, we won! The boys are going home.
Looks as if I'm going to that truck, Yes, I'm right.
"Hi," Someone says, "Fancy meeting you here!"
It was another of my Squadron.
"Looks like we're together."
The truck starts up.
Why couldn't I still be fighting?
I'd rather be dead than be a P.O.W.
How many years will I be held captive?
How long until I'm set free to go home?
Or maybe I won't, maybe I'll be shot
Then I'll never see England again.
Walking my Aunt's one-eyed corgi,
Usually through the stream in the village;
Losing the dogs in the park,
And running breathlessly to catch them;
Spending sixpence in the village shop,
Or posting a letter barely able to reach the posting slot;
All this and much more reminds me of my home.
LIFE AND DEATH
(I think perhaps the main thing I would try to do in a nuclear war,
in fact any war, would be to keep alive. 'Life and death'
me, can be summed up in this short verse). Life is like a
candle, A candle burning bright,
But like a normal clock
The life of man goes on, tic toe, tic toe
Nothing can be changed, except from
Day to night,
The candle flickers out.
And man is no more. The clock stops, No more tics and no more
The life of man is destroyed And perhaps the end of evolution.
His hands were old and wrinkled, they hung
motionless by his side.
His fingers were thin and brittle and it seemed as though
his every movement was like an eternity of pain. He hardly moved them now because
they were weak and useless. His knuckles were large and smooth.
The skin ebbed over them like a rough sea and his nails were
white with age. Suddenly his
hand stretched out and closed again as if he had
clasped a handful of
emptiness. His hands went limp, his mind went limp
and then he was no more.
LOOK EVERYTHING IS WAKING
Look everything is waking
the traffic begins to roar. Lights flash on and off, babies cry
and dogs howl. Smoke curls out of the chimneys
like old men from their beds. Women in curlers run around the
looking for the late milkman.
Doors slam and men go to work. Some drive noisy cars, other walk
through the busy street. Machines dang and
bang as they begin to wake
from a cold night.
Up the shafts they climb,
Suddenly they appear,
With faces covered in grime,
Their bodies look worn,
Hands covered in blisters and cuts.
Greeted warmly, they limp
To collect their wages.
With twinkling, yet sorrowful eyes
They take them.
Down the cobbled and dirty street, Over
the hills, and into the valleys,
All the time they dream,
Of home, and bed. Sleep.
At last they reach home,
Greeted affectionately, by their wives.
They climb up staircases, and hop into the
Their eyes close.
Suddenly, they are awakened,
It is morning. Back to the pits. Tony Hicks 4K
THE ENGLISH GAME OF CRICKET
In cricket you have two sides, one side in, the other side out.
Each player from the side that's in goes out in turn until he is
out then he comes
in and the next player in goes out.
Then when the side that were in are
all out the side that were out go in leaving
the other side out. This goes on until the side in is out and
the game ends. However there are such
things as not outs,
but these just complicate matters. The final scores are
totalled and the winning team
is the side which scored the most runs while in before it was
out. That describes the basic rules of the Simple English
Game of Cricket.
T, Robins 4L
The beauty that surrounded me,
As I gazed upon the meadows,
None could compare with other sights,
And say that it was not better.
This is the place where I was born,
A quiet country dwelling
With flowers strewn 'mongst every hedge
And birds forever singing.
On Sunday morns church bells did ring,
I remember that distinctly,
And saw the young and old alike,
Slip reverently into their pews.
And in the evening all was still,
Only the wind, in the trees blew.
The spooky ancient graveyard stood,
And held its peace forever.
The quiet, peaceful church,
The village pubs ready to burst on a hot summers evening,
Vast green fields and the little bridge over the river,
Stepping carefully across canal locks,
Picking almonds from trees which grow along the embankment,
Swans, ducks, cows, horses, dogs and cats,
In village and field and on water.
Conkers and scrumping,
Finding potatoes left from the harvest,
Riding bicycles down the Pikel,
Watching donkeys or rushing for a bus or train,
Hiding from the Station Master who looked like Humpty Dumpty,
Deliberately forgetting to buy a train ticket,
The busy main road which now passes by.
Our house was one of many others,
The name of the road was "Kings Street",
A long dreary place to live with not much
Out of the ordinary to see,
Just the same things every day.
To pass the day with something new would be
A conquest for one of us.
Then one day a new family came
To live with us in our homely way.
We thought we'd share with them our
Friendly thoughts and games.
But we were to see before long,
Our efforts were to be wasted in miserable
Their ways were not like ours at all,
The father was a cop.
None of us liked the cops, because
They got a lad from Kings Street once
For beating up a V.I.P.
And he hadn't really done any harm,
Because the bloke was bigger'n 'im.
The family didn't think much of us either.
But with a name like Rigley-Smyth
Can't say I blame them I s'pose.
Ours were just ordinary ones like
Smith or Jones or even the occasional
Different one like Brown or Phillips.
Still, the Rigley-Smyths didn't last long,
'Cause we soon saw to that.
They took the hint and moved away to London.
And we just went back to our old homely ways
As if nothing had happened.
We were content again — and that was all
The liquid of fire, portrays
A poetry of great joy.
The joy of smelling, hearing, touching and see.
See the turbulent sea of delight,
On which our knowledge merely laps.
Laps like an ever rising tide.
But so slowly.
Ever so slowly.
For ever and ever; slow-men.
A. Worley U6
An empty church awaits,
Warmed only by an organic melody,
To pay her last respects to old Alt.
One woman was an
I wonder when she
last visited Alf?
Or perhaps she
wanted to listen
To a grandson's
sad lament on the organ.
The rack waits
rigidly for its dead-weight.
happier tune begins.
Perhaps art has
And I think of
the last service I attended for the dead.
Another woman has
just come in.
Annoyed at old Alf, because she wanted
To do the flowers
now, not wait.
Three quarters of
an hour is just enough she said and rushed.
"We thank thee
all our God"
With hearts and
hands and coffins.
The wrong tune
surely, but no one else is here yet,
Not even Alf.
Remembering the story of the son who attended
funeral in brown boots,
I look down. He
said he didn't mind.
He also said he
had lived too long, Alf.
The son had given
his black boots to the poor.
But no one asked
where they were,
Just sneered and
scoffed and said,
"Not a proper
Christian, he ain't."
A. Worley U6
Folkestone, the place in Kent;
We lived there for three years.
I used to like going to the beach,
Even if it was pebbles, and just to paddle my feet.
Every Saturday we would walk down the High Street,
And stand outside gazing into the rock shop;
Just one man rolling a giant stick of rock,
With such skill.
Further down the road were stalls of every kind.
The school I went to was very pleasant,
Everyone made you welcome; even the boys.
I used to walk a mile to school and back,
It did me good though, as I lost a bit of fat.
Our house was new, with central heating,
We even had a garden, back and front.
The daily routine was school.
Except, of course, Saturday and Sunday.
On the weekend we would always enjoy ourselves.
I wish we had never left Folkestone,
To come to Malta.
We'd go on the 'bus to Bracknell,
Get off at the roundabout
And walk down the pebbly lane to the waiting room.
It was full of old and worn, but comfortable arm-chairs
The large oak table was full of magazines.
The paraffin stove gave out an odd smell —
Always connected with dentists.
The quietness of the people furiously reading,
Fighting down the fear of what was about to happen.
The white-coated nurse, calling the people in, one by oni
Then, the dreaded moment comes,
When my name is called.
I walk unwillingly into the room,
Full of frightening instruments of torture.
The black padded chair, always too large.
The white face of the dentist looms over me
As he pokes around in my mouth
With his evil-tasting instruments.
At last I hear the longed for voice
"That's all right, come again in six months."
I dance out of the room, the opposite of how I entered.
The people waiting look up in wonder,
As I come out of there smiling.
Maybe it wasn't so bad after all.
Sheringham, a fishing village,
On the English coast,
Was a fascinating place for me at 10.
I can recall walking for hours and hours,
Along the rocky shore,
Uncovering adventures by the score,
And enjoying every crashing, roaring wave,
That broke about the shore.
At night the fishing boats set sail
Casting strange shadows on the swirling sea,
These heavy clumsy fishing boats,
Seemed to me to be giant galleons,
That sailed the seven seas.
In this small fishing port,
I found a heaven,
In my younger days.
all cloud has cleared. Setting off alone in search
of paths and peace, a tall wooden gate ahead obstructs the way and a
fat female farmer offers a pod of broad beans in answer to an
exaggerated face of lostness. The gate opens onto soft green seas of
grass, framed in low, friendly stone walls. But behind them,
crouched men spring up on yet another netted, wretched sparrow. Moving
on, then sitting in the midst of the tall grass to soothe your
angry feelings the quiet bliss of a pale blue sky and the distant silhouette of
but this:— the tall grass and sky. But look again -Martians of television aerials crash down destroying the moment. Springing
up irritably you walk on again and slowly calm returns, but soon
the careless path betrays you onto the hard, black, noisy main road. A bus
more scream by, kids and horn and flags harshly blaring "Vote
Labour". And more men glare and stare from behind their
noxious parting gestures drown and suffocate all scent
Ellie Hoctor LVI
Them Them Them Them Them Them Them Them Them Them Them Them
Them Them Them Them Them Them Them Them Them Them Them Them Them
Them Them Them Them Them Them Them Them Them Them Them
Them Them Them Them Them Them Them Them Me.
Lawton L6 Arts
Shudder! It's cold, too cold.
The damp freezing fog
Deposits crystals of misery
On his tattered mane.
The cold clammy clog Seeps into his coat and
Clings to his oily skin
Like a warted frog.
"My God!" he breaths in A cloud of vapour, as the Icy blanket bites his
A car slushes past in
The dark cruel night.
Lamplight and neon-glare
Shine off the bold tarmac
And slushy pavements.
The whole grimy grim street
The old man lives to die.
Brutal man see not your brethren, lying yonder in
Feed him the food of life,
light his heart with joy,
so that you too may rejoice in his change of humour.
Love rewards you not only with love,
but with eternal life;
Love, that you may be loved
Aqua Vitae in a state of shock
Damages the liver.
Stones in the kidney.
Potatoes, nicotene and coffee
Give you cancer.
Breathing makes you die.
Eat, drink and be merry for tomorrow
A. Worley U6
THE LAST OF THE BOURGEOIS
Lying face down between the high steel walls
of the railway track,
The grass came up easily, now, between the ribs,of the skeletons.
It was all but an age ago when he came.
With powerful strides up the
"Just for an hour" he said, "or two".
But the cheap wine was rough.
Too rough for a man of his calibre.
And a little bread from his battered bag made
His last meal.
The judgement day had come, and gone.
Leaving him behind.
The bourgeois working hard, at the office,
failed to notice.
All the world was his now.
Successful beyond his wildest dreams,
THE VERGES OF SLEEP
Restless, nervous, and uneasy,
I lay awake.
Dreaming up fantasies of the morrow.
Surely things will change?
Just one look, one smile.
Like the turning of the tide,
she must come back.
Unspontaneous chain-reaction of thoughts
flash through my mind,
as quickly as the lights of a passing express,
only to pass back to the persistent darkness of sorrow,
That constant nagging of my mind.
The distractions of the day are replaced by the quietness of dark,
And so I sleep; awaiting the morrow,
which never comes.
School Characters (3)
END OF SCHOOL
And so I'm turned
out, the final product,
To be consumed
within the world.
For now I must
leave, my place to be taken up by another
To leave my farm
where I have grown,
Within whose walls
I have learnt my mind.
From whose facts,
knowledge, and wisdom,
were once pumped
into my subjective mind.
I look back on
what I've been taught;
I realise now that
only now can I begin to learn,
for now my
foundation has been laid.
memoirs come alive.
So much has passed
since I first walked in
a naive and
So many things
have changed since that day.
me, some five faces alone,
Remain from that
far off day.
It is with mixed
feelings I watch these last days pass;
As the curtain
falls about me,
I wonder what lies
And, with the
feeling one gets on that last performance
of a dramatic
I look around and
say farewell to all I've got to know.
Flashing lights of red, white, yellow and green.
Meaningless reflections of joy.
Laughter, smiles, and happiness.
Greetings thrown like confetti to be hurled back in
A Christmas Catherine-wheel of happenings spin around
my little world
'When will this superficial age end such plastic
The wind picks up; so, up collar, and tramp across the
Alone; I watch the couples hustling by, huddled
from the cold and cruel.
Standing at the corner of a bustling street, I feel caught in a
node of wellbeing.
With one last lashing of the wind on my hardened face,
I slip into the pub.
Roars of warm laughter greet my ears.
A blanket of blue smoke envelopes my body.
Red noses and empty glasses.
! stumble up to the hurried bar-tender,
fingering for my last couple of pence.
Heaving my exhausted mind up to the counter,
my lips shroud the thin rim of glass.
As the warm liqueur seeps down my cracked gullet,
I stare into the heavy mirror, covered with uneven french chalk.
Peering back at me is a barely recognisable figure,
An unshaved reject of life.
What has happened to me?
those cracked lips and sunken cheeks.
Searching my pockets, I long to drown my mind;
To seek salvation in damnation.
Nothing left but despair.
"Get a move along there; Out; I'm sure your wives are
where you are. I'll get hell if you're not all out in a minute."
Out, out; where must I go?
Where can I go.
In a deep daze I walk out with those transparent people.
Into the rain, I loiter down the now dead street.
Beyond all care, my worn-out coat becomes drenched in
The puddles flow into the thin soles of my shoes.
Looking across the road, a dim light reveals a
I must go and sleep; those precious moments of slumber in which
she comes back to me.
Then, by some supernatural force, I'm halted in the
Looking around I become transfixed by the glare of my
coming through the rain --to save me.
Closer, closer, brighter and brighter.
An almighty exhilarating screech, an ecstasy of pain.
"Quick, get him up, ... top late ..."
"Damned fool, fancy walking across the road like that.
God help his
family, poor things, being Christmas an' all' ".
"Can we have your name please?"
'WHERE THERE'S MUCK, THERE'S BRASS'
I became a dustman for a very simple reason: I was broke. My
'demob' pay had gone, and there were four
months to go before the
University term — and my grant — was to start. So I found
myself reporting for work one morning at half past seven to the local Council yard,
little thinking then that I was destined to do this every summer
sometimes Easter -- for the next four years!
The foreman who had interviewed me a few days before had
explained that his regular men were due to take their annual
during the summer months — and I was to be
their temporary replacement. This meant that I might be involved in any of the
jobs in his department from 'Collection' to 'Disposal'.
began by working on the 'tip' under the kindly surveillance of
an old coal-miner whose health had been impaired by long hours
underground in conditions to which he was
obviously not suited. Our
job was to sort out the refuse after each lorry had
deposited its load. We
would wait for the dust to settle, and then like Hillary and Tensing we
would climb from the bottom, collecting metal, bones, jam jars,
rags or anything else that could be salvaged. All these articles
were then to be
stacked separately — later to be sold
by the Council, who shared the
profits with us in the form of a monthly 'Salvage
think it was in these first few weeks that I began to realise
had not merely taken on a job, but was being educated in a way
amount of study could ever provide.
In this world of ours there are countless benefits which we take
granted. We never appreciate
electricity until there is a power cut, or the
internal combustion engine until our
cars break down.
We regard our dust bins in much the same way. Putting something
into a dust bin is a final, irrevocable
act — the end of the line. The
result of this thinking is that things are put
into dustbins with a gay abandon which is almost frightening,
Students of Sociology ought, I am convinced, to do two months compulsory work on a refuse tip as
their degree course. They would learn much about the people of the
One of the drivers used to keep a tin of 'Brasso' in his cab,
a very good line of trade with the local pawnshop, selling the
which we had found, and he had cleaned. Another driver mended
clocks. It was amazing to see how many
articles were salvaged which people had obviously thrown out as
At least there is nothing immoral in throwing out junk. But
in tying a piece of cord round the neck of a ten day old baby
that in the dustbin. We made this awful discovery one wet and
windy afternoon. The coroner's
verdict was 'Murder by person or persons unknown'. So you
see what I mean about people regarding the act of putting
something in a dust
bin as 'irrevocable'.
In between the arrival of the lorries, old Bill and I would have
minute! Seated on a couple of upturned dustbins, our empire of
all around us, we would light our 'Woodbines' and wash the dust
our throats with long draughts of cold tea — made without milk
Bill would then, between bouts of coughing, entertain me with
about life down the mine, and I would sit at the feet of
Gamaliel, listening to his common-sense philosophy of life.
completing my apprenticeship on the tip, I was transferred to
the work of emptying the bins. I did a
week with the 'light' gang, learning the 'Knack' of carrying the dustbins on a
leather shoulder pad, and
was then moved to the 'heavy' gang. The difference between
gangs was this.
The light gang emptied the dustbins of all private houses and
'better' residential areas in
the district. One man went on ahead of the lorry with a special
trolley on which he wheeled the dustbins on to the pavement.
They could then be
emptied by two men together.
The 'heavy' gangs theatres of operations were the three estates
colliery houses. A coal-miner, even in
summer, never uses a shovel to
'mend' his fire. He puts his coal on by the bucketful.
Bigger fires more
ash. He also sorts out his coal when it is delivered, and any lumps of bad
coal — known locally as 'bats' - - he puts in the dust bin —
This of course meant that the bins were heavier, and often
under a mound of ash. Each of these bins
had to be carried by one man,
as the trolley could not be used — but as we
got a penny an hour more,
we did not mind. We were the elite of the dustbin world --
and I particularly remember feeling flattered when on my return from the University
the following summer the foreman sent me straight out with the
think I realised then that I had arrived!
My particular 'mate' on the heavy gang was an ex-Guardsman who
had lost a lung in the Normandy campaign. For
the first week he 'nursed'
me, taking any bin that seemed by its weight to be glued to
After that we took them as they came, and I soon learned how to duck
under archways and open gates whilst carrying a bin and how to
trapping my fingers between the bin's handle and the steel side
lorry when actually 'emptying'.
My 'mate' was splendid company. He was very intelligent, and an
excellent conversationalist and raconteur. Politics, literature,
music — there
was no limit to the subjects we discussed as we did our rounds —
and the hours flew by in consequence. I'm happy to say that he
on to better things since.
Rain, dogs and insects were our enemies. A dustbin left with its
off in the rain for an hour becomes
twice as heavy, and on being hoisted
to the shoulder of the unfortunate dustman
invariably treats him to a cold
shower of a mixture of water, ash and tea
As a red rag is to a bull, so is a dustman to a dog. They came
shapes and sizes — from Alsatians that
looked like Timber-wolves to yapping Pekinese — and they all seemed to have
one common aim — the annihilation
of the enemy — us. The 'gang' were experts at dealing with this
menace. They knew every dog in
the district, and could tell you each
one's peculiarities and
I remember going to collect a bin one day from a house with a
'Beware of the Dog' sign on the gate. I
was told by the gang that the dog
was a Bull Terrier, but that as long as I
advanced on him he would retreat.
Under their critical eyes I walked down the
path to be met by the dog.
He retreated, certainly -- until I tried to pick up the
bin. Then he advanced, with the hair sticking up at the back of his neck, and a sort of rumbling
growl of patently enjoyable anticipation in his throat. He just
with his head about a foot away from my hand — which had frozen
bin handle — and waited for my next
move. We remained like this for
some time, whilst I made overtures such as
'Nice dog' - which he rejected with growls that obviously indicated that he was a
'Nasty dog', and
took my words as adding insult to injury.
I was saved by the timely arrival of the dog's coal-miner
master, who heaved him bodily
into a large Kennel-cum-cage in the yard, and consoled
me with the words 'By gum, lad, it's a good job
tha didn't move. 'E'd 'ave
'ad thy 'and off. 'E's a real lad, is yon'. I duly emptied
the bin and returned to the gang, who had been watching the performance with
I only learned then that that was one bin that you never emptied alone.
But most of the dogs were friendly enough. One old veteran, a
battle scarred mongrel who
looked rather like a Labrador chopped off at the knees,
used to meet me every week as we came into 'his' street. He
would take my hand in his mouth and trot along as I went down the garden
paths to collect. Woe
betide any other dog who barked at me then. One
day I saw him lay a young puppy flat on its back and apparently worry it
before it knew what
had happened. The puppy had foolishly yapped at
us as we came up the path. Now
it was lying with blood all over its
throat, and I thought the old
mongrel had killed it. However, on closer
inspection I found that he
had just nipped the pup's ears, and they, as
they flapped, had left what
looked like a gory, fatal wound across its
neck. It didn't yap the
Insects I have mentioned as our enemies. But on reflection I
we developed a kind of resistance to them, and were hardly aware
their presence. Wasps were there in
abundance, but no-one was ever
stung. Earwigs — known locally as 'Battlewigs' — seemed to
have a particular liking to living inside the rims on the under-side of the bins —
the results that if a man was wearing an open-necked shirt one
or two were
bound to find their way inside it as he carried the bin on his
shoulder. Every afternoon on
my return home I had to go through a ritual 'de-lousing'
ceremony. Without fail I would
find a large number of earwigs — squashed
or otherwise - - inside my shirt. Needless to say the ceremony
took place in the
garden — or in the toolshed if it rained.
Of the many funny incidents which happened, one in particular
always remained clear in my mind. In
one of the colliery villages the back
gardens of the houses were very poorly
cultivated, and there were no
dividing hedges. The bins were always overflowing, and we
had to take a shovel with us to clear up the mess, refill the bin, and
empty it for a second time. To make our task easier, after
empty bin we would take a short cut across the back garden to
did this one morning in company with the foreman and my 'mate'.
I was walking about a couple of yards ahead of
them, and was just passing the back door of the house, when I
was struck at the back of
the neck by something hot and wet, which slid in sinister fashion down
my neck. This sensation was followed by my being aware of the
had followed me hooting with laughter, and the wife of the house
on her back doorstep, cackling with glee. I had received at the
of my neck a bowlful of potato peelings which had been destined
for the bin. As the bin was overflowing, the housewife had
decided to save time
by hurling them in its general direction, and I had intercepted
orbit. 'I'm ever so sorry, duck (A local term of affection),'
she said, between
delighted chuckles; 'but then' - - trying to justify her actions
ought to have used the front path you know'.
The other occasion I remember that amused the gang was when the
lorry ran over my foot. I was chatting to the
driver, leaning on the door
of his cab, when someone shouted 'Right' — which was the
signal for him
to move on to the next gate. Without thinking he let out the clutch, and
the front wheel of the lorry rolled gently but firmly over my
foot. I hopped
_around in agony for a few minutes while the gang crowded round
offering advice and trying to hide the
laughter in their eyes by pretending to
be concerned. Luckily I wasn't hurt seriously,
and we pressed on, highly
After a time, as I have said, I became
accepted by the gang as 'one of
them'. Indeed there were people in the
district who thought I was regular.
But of course as Autumn came round I would
return to the University for
another year. I used to see the gang at Christmas and
Easter, and they
would ask me how the studying was going, and when the exams were
due, and what they would do to me if I failed.
When I got my degree, I turned up for work as usual at the
of the summer vacation. The gang were
waiting for me with a special
badge — they had found it in one of the bins — which they
me as a fully qualified dustman, and welcoming me to my year of postgraduate
research into refuse collection. I think this was just to
me that my new status pleased them, but hadn't altered their
me one iota.
Soon after this the system was changed, and I was
transferred to the
'Road gang'. I dug trenches, repaired roads,
used the Pneumatic drill (a
penny an hour extra), and, on one great day, drove the road
roller. I say
'one day' purposely, because I broke all the kerbstones at the corner of
one street, and the foreman would not accept my plea that
neater that way'. Then the summer after I broke away from my
and yet somehow none of these jobs had the same appeal as
working with the dustbin
In the September of that year it all came to an end. I
started teaching — and my earnings dropped by three pounds a
week. But that's another
(Former Head of Classics, Tal-Handaq).
SCHOOL SPORTS REPORTS
With only three players from last years team Mr. Jackson built
reasonably competent side. Unfortunately the points wouldn't
due to a great weight handicap in the scrum which resulted in a
possession. We were also very unlucky to lose our captain Dave
Morris at the beginning of the season, when he damaged the
cartilage in his
knee. The end of the season came with
the seven-a-sides. We got to the
quarter finals of the plate competition losing to
H.M.S. LONDON 6-0 in a close and enjoyable game. Needless to
all came away feeling very fed up that the season had ended.
Played 10. Won 2. Drawn 0. Lost 8. Points for 46. Points against
J. Vincenti, Woodcock, Metcalfe, J. Lavin,
McCole, Sarginson, Fraser, Linehan, Tillson, Burns,Peters, Vincenti P.,
J., Lavin, Bradberry,
SCHOOL 1st XI REPORT (SOCCER)
1970-71 was a season which began disastrously but finished
of the school's most successful ever. Before the Christmas
had won only two and drawn one game (all friendlies), losing
times by high margins. However, our
revival began with a 9-0 trouncing of
the exiles, continued with a hard fought
3-3 draw with the R.M.P., and then
with the team playing very good
football we went on to register some
excellent results. In particular those
worth mentioning are a 5-1 win over
R.N.W.T., and our last game of the season in which we
defeated 'B' Company Devon and Dorset Regiment 7-0.
In the Inter-Services six-a-side tournament, our 'A' team
well to reach the semi-finals and it was only their own
temperament which prevented them from progressing further.
Nevertheless a tremendous performance.
Congratulations to the staff in demonstrating their superior
in the match against the school!
Finally, on behalf of the team, I would
like to thank Mr. J. Wright for
his help and encouragement throughout
W 4 D 2 L 8 F 30 A 51 Pts
10. Peter Ward
BACK ROW. L to
R: Keith Mariner, Bill Davis, Bruce Woodcock, Spence
Peter Walker, Bob Gamble, Peter Toghill.
L to R: Preston Peters, Howard Linehan, John Lavin, John
Les Law, Nigel Vickery, George Molden.
COLTS U16 SOCCER TEAM
Maltese Schools League
Lost 6 -1
De La Salle
Lost 5 - 0
Won 2 - 0
The Colts team was entered in the Maltese Schools League for the
first time, and found themselves playing in a very high standard
Although they could often match the opposition with individual
skills, the opposition were frequently much bigger than the
Colts, and as
a result, every match was a real struggle. Also, as the age
cut across two year groups at school, the Colts took a long time
to get used to playing together as a team, and several changes,
both in the
players and their positions were necessary before a settled team
KEYSLEY, the appointed captain, gave them an early lead in the
first game, but unfortunately neither he nor the rest of the
to score again until the last game, when a season's hard work
was rewarded with a well-deserved 2 - 0 win over Naxxar.
Throughout the season, although the results were a little
many individuals emerged with a great deal of credit. MARINER
a particularly fine season at centre-half, where his strength
had much to do with keeping five scores just within the bounds
of respectability. He was ably supported in his defensive role by LINEHAM, BIRD,
MOYLE and ARMSTRONG.
ROBINS in goal showed great courage against
some strong opposition, until
a dislocated thumb temporarily interrupted his career.
WILKINSON deputised for the next few games and although
somewhat unorthodox in his approach, still managed to stop considerably
more than he let in.
STANYARD in midfield emerged as the team's most consistent
player, and played well in
every game, the forwards were given very little room
to move, and although the
attack, spearheded by KELSLEY, BOWER and
BONAS tried hard, they rarely
managed to penetrate the opposition's
However, although the results were not as good as expected, the
Colts gained invaluable experience both in their training, and
games. It is hoped that this should lead to a much more
SCHOOL CROSS-COUNTRY REPORT
On the whole, not our best season, although our Under 15's
credit for some very mature
performances against stiff opposition.
The winter programme opened as usual with the Alpine League
Races, in which our Under 17's,
due more to failure to field a full team
than anything else, finished well down.
The under 15 team compensated
by winning their section after an exciting tussle with
In the M.A.A.A.'s Shuttle Road Relay race, both teams ran very
with the seniors finshing fifth, and the Juniors one place
higher, in their
Our under 15's took the honours again in winning the
in particular to
place) and Smith (5th
place). The seniors team finished
fourth, a good
effort in a highly
In the M.A.A.A. National Championships, our Under 17 team came
fifth, while the Juniors were just
beaten for the first place.
In the Annual School Inter-House Cross-Country Championships,
Noonan won the Junior race in record
time, Keysley the Colts, and Ward
the senior race, Drake won the overall championships,
thus ending the
St. Vincent monopoly of the event.
Lastly, I would like to thank Mr. Ricketts for his support and
throughout the season.
SCHOOL ATHLETICS REPORT
On the whole, not a very successful athletics season, with the
standard of programme generally lower
than last year.
The first event of the year was the Malta Schools Championship,
which we had won last year and hoped to
retain. This was not to be,
however, and with the Senior team finishing third and
the Juniors fourth,
we could manage only fourth place in the overall aggregate.
Our results were rather more encouraging in the Malta Youths'
held at the Marsa Stadium. We fielded only a small team, but
everyone did well, in particular Gamble, Rogers and Downton, who
between them collected three first places and two seconds. Our
set up a new national record of 51.1
seconds in winning the 4 x 100m.
Finahy, I would like to extend thanks to Mr. Ricketts for his
and encouragement throughout the season.
L to R: K. Wortley, I. D'lvry,
Smith, D. Metcalfe.
ROW: L to R: M. Smith, D.Noonan,
B. Keyslay, I.
Metcalfe, M. Robins, M. Moyle.
NETBALL- SEASON 1970-71
Unfortunately, keeness amongst the girls far outweighed the
opportunity for match play during the netball season. This is a great pity as
there are some potentially very good players in the school
benefit by the chance to play netball teams from outside the
We did however
manage one or two matches, chiefly for the Senior
Girls, one against the Malta Y.S.O. team and two against the local Qormi
Secondary School. The First Years also had a few matches
Service Junior Schools but obviously these matches were
size and confidence in our favour. However they were enjoyed
much by the players concerned. The Middle School managed
just one fixture against the Floriana Playing Fields Team.
The best competition was in the house matches which were
during the Autumn Term. They were run in three age sections
(1st & 2nd
Years) — Intermediates (3rd & 4th Years) and Seniors (5th
& 6th Years). The teams were selected and coached chiefly
by the Games
each house with help from the House Mistresses. The
are to be congratulated in the coaching of their Junior
The matches were held on Wednesday evenings and were played
great keeness and competitive spirit. The results were as
1st — ST. VINCENT
2nd — NELSON
3rd — DRAKE
• - HAWKINS
2nd — DRAKE
3rd — ST. VINCENT
— ST. VINCENT
2nd — NELSON 3rd _ HAWKINS
— ST. VINCENT
2nd — NELSON
3rd — DRAKE 4th — HAWKINS
outside matches were difficult to find, even more so than
netball, as the Malta Schools do not seem to play at all.
We did manage
fixtures against the Wrens which were very good competition.
lost to them twice and managed to hold them to a draw the
We also had one fixture early in the year against a team from a visiting
Dartmouth Training Squadron.
best and keenest competition was in the School House
in the Spring Term at Corradino, when a lot of startling new
was suddenly discovered !
This competition was held in two age groups — Seniors (4th,
6th Years) and Juniors (1st, 2nd & 3rd Years). The results
Caroline Gary, Sally Arbuthnot, Theresa Smith,
Ann Bacchus, Carol Turley,
2nd — NELSON
3rd _ ST. VINCENT
2nd — HAWKINS
3rd — DRAKE
4th — ST.
1st — NELSON
2nd — DRAKE
3rd — HAWKINS
4th — ST. VINCENT
At the end of the Easter Term we again entered for the
Inter-Service 6-a-side Hockey Tournament.
We entered four girls teams, two boys' teams, a Ladies' Staff
a Men's Staff Team. All the teams played
extremely well, sometimes
against some quite tough opposition. Tal Handaq Girls II
of Ann Bacchus, Caroline Carey, Debbie Wright, Theresa Smith, Carol
Turley, Sally Arbuthnot and Janet Griffiths, won their section
to go through
to the final which turned out to be against the Ladies' Staff
experience on the side of the staff but maybe (dare I say it)
them, the final turned out to be a close thing, resulting in a
win for the
staff by 2 goals to 1. Both the winners and Runners-up receiving
cups at the presentation.
A small group of enthusiasts this year decided they wanted to
a Girls' Basketball Team. The enthusiasm was definitely there
but to begin
with, the basketball skill was a little dubious !! However the
hard at this and, chiefly by their own efforts, managed to
if not all of the necessary skills and techniques. The only
were able to find were the girls from the Polytechnic and this
played five or six times. Although we were never able to beat
them, towards the end of the season, we were definitely
improving to the extent
that we were rapidly closing the gap in the scores. Next year
may see the
break-through; the enthusiasts came from the following:—
Ann Bacchus, Debbie Bradman, Maddy McKenzie, Sarah Braithwaite,
Judy Fletcher, Rita Auger, Carol Turley,
Jo Robinson, Chris. Henderson.
CLUB IN ACTION
School sailing this year has differed from previous years,
the merger of the Malta Army and Naval Sailing Clubs. Training
carried out in 'Bosun' class dighies at Hay-Wharf. Several new
have been introduced to the Sport and should soon be qualified
The actual instruction is carried out by people who are already
under the watchful eye of Mr. Roberts and Mr. Tatton. Teaching
people how to Sail is not easy and many helmsmen have learned
self control. This year, school helmsmen
have made up more than half the
Malta Army dinghy team. Tal Handaq helmsmen
have also taken most of the top places in Regattas. The school
now has over twenty helmsmen,
which makes it possible to hold an Inter-house sailing competition for
the first time.
This year we say goodbye and thank you to Mr. Tatton
Roberts who have devoted much of their
time and skill to school sailing.
The team entered in the Naval League last season, was only a
moderate team. The bowlers and first five
batsmen were of a competitive standard, but they were let down by indifferent fielding. This year's
showed that the school will have a good eleven man team,
combined from the
two six-a-side teams entered in the tournament.
Full colours were awarded to John Molden, Terry McCole and
colours to Les Law, Spencer Berry and
TAL HANDAQ SENIOR
Tremendous progress has been made in the club, especially in
contests, which resulted in many upgradings. In the
judo contest, competition should be fierce, as well as exhausting
Although winners may only gain points for their house by a
strangle hold, arm
lock or throw, every one will gain valuable experience.
The judo club now
has KARATE sessions where the breaking of tiles,
wood and the disarming of
a foe are commonplace.
On behalf of the club I should like to extend our thanks to
D. Davies, Terry McCole, Steve Cotton, Larry Mogridge,
Nick Roberts,Cameron Frazer, T. Ricketts.
BASKETBALL REPORT 1971
This year in Basketball, the school played well considering
opponents were more experienced and we did quite well in
of our matches. All the players played
quite well and have enjoyed the
games very much.
We would like to thank Mr. Ricketts for all the help he has
us. We managed to join a league and have played friendly
games one of
which we won against Polytechnic.
The main team consisted of Preston Peters, Scott Tillson,
Sean Hutchinson, Jeffrey Cornish, Ergu Biigin, Clay Owens
and Peter Walker.
Although we lost most matches, I think
everyone played very well
and hope that we will have some future successes.
L. Bridwell (Capt).
L) 20 -- 59 De La Salle
(L) 36 -- 68
(L) 22 — 31
Technical Institute (L) 28 - - 18
Stella Maris (L) 31 — 32
(L) 28 - 45 (b)
46 -- 56
Polytechnic (L) 46 - 56 (d)
Exiles (L) 32 -58 (W) 37
Polytechnic (L) 32 - 44
Hawkins P3 L2 W11 Pts 2
Nelson P3 L0 W3 Pts 6
St Vincent P3 L2 W1 Pts 2
Drake P3 L2 W1 Pts 2
This year's inter-house competition over a reasonably
of about 10
miles was essentially a test of route selection and map
between fixed control points. The differing abilities of
coping with the demands of the exercise are reflected in
the time recorded
for the first man home, 1 hour 40 minutes and that of the
home, 3 hours
2 minutes. Good support running by Dick Mason (1st)
100 pts. and Peter Walker (2nd) 104 pts. ensured overall victory in the
competition for Nelson. They were followed in closely by
M. Donnelly and T. Agius-Ferrante, all 3rd with 123pts.
2nd St. Vincent and Drake 426
Services Saddle Club is situated next to the Malta
Stables, Racecourse Street, Marsa. Flight Lieutenant
Bowen is the
Stable Manager, and the Chief Pony Club Instructress is Mrs.
Sheldon, who normally takes out the rides.
The Saddle Club
caters for Tal Handaq riders on Thursday and Friday
afternoons. The Fourth year ride on a Thursday afternoon and the Fifth
years on a Friday afternoon. In all there are eighteen riders in
the School, which is quite a good number considering that riding was
started as a School sport only last September. It costs 107- to
actually join the club, and £2 per month to ride once a week.
There are twenty-two
riding horses in the Stables, of which approximately eighteen
are also used for Polo.
We arrive at the
Stables in time to help with the 'tacking-up'. This
term means to put the saddles and bridles on the horses. The ride itself
consists of walking and trotting around the race-track followed
by about twenty minutes of basic schooling in the paddock.
This helps us
to maintain our
balance and control the horse properly. The ride ends
with a canter
down the straight. Shortly we will be getting some jumping
instruction. The height of the jumps has to be restricted
because of the
hardness of the
When we return to
the Stables after the ride we are asked to 'untack'
our horses, water them and put them into their respective boxes.
If it is raining, or the ground is too wet for us to ride, Mrs.
gives us lectures on Stable Management, this includes such
mucking out the stable, cleaning tack, grooming, and learning
different points (parts of the anatomy) of a horse. We are also
to recognise common illnesses, for example Colic, and how to
until a Vet arrives, if necessary.
Sunday, June 6th, the Malta Horse Show will be held at the Marsa
Although it is during the exams, it is hoped that some of us will be
able to participate.
Drake House Report
Mr. M. Roberts
This year has been
one of enjoyment rather than fulfillment for Drake
We have entered enthusiastic teams for all sporting events and in some
cases this enthusiasm has met with success.
achievement was the resounding success we had in
winning the interhouse cross-country championship. The senior team in
gave a fine example of team running when our six runners returned amongst the first 14 home. The juniors and Colts had previously run
well and laid the foundation for our success.
The senior Rugby
and Soccer sides were occasionally weakened at
the beginning of
the year due to lack of support. Those who did play,
however, were all
keen and gave a good account of themselves under the
fine captaining of Les Law. It is good to see this Senior Soccer team
quiet confidence without shouting and abusing each other.
The Colts Rugby
and Soccer teams led by Boaz Keyslay have acquitted
themselves excellently taking second place in their section of
the leagues. In the six-a-side competition the Colts won their
section and helped the house to second overall position.
The junior Soccer
side, which has a large number of 1st year boys
in it, played some excellent football and shows great promise. In Rugby
have shown a lot of skill and although they lost two of their
games it was by a very small margin in both games.
In the minor
Soccer league Drake finished above the other house
teams entered but were pipped for 1st place by a very good St. Andrews
Drake House Report
Drake has by no means been outstanding in any particular
year. The School
year invariably starts off with a burst of enthusiasm from
and this year was no exception. We arranged Netball
most weeks and we played the matches towards the end of the
The results showed
how worthwhile the practices were, regarding
the juniors, as
they came second but the seniors were not so' successful
and overall Drake
House came third. I think the goal shooters deserve
a special mention because of their outstanding performance
being Colleen Rea and Judith Housby and the
Arbuthnot and Sue
The Hockey matches also, provided a good Saturday
morning's entertainment end, despite the
inevitable moan about having to get up on
a Saturday morning, the House put up a splendid
show. The juniors fought
exceptionally hard and were placed first in
their section. The seniors, however, were not so fortunate and only won one
match. The final result was
a draw between Nelson and Drake, but on goal average,
Drake lost by a
mere decimal of a goal. Our final position was second.
We are still in the midst of the badminton matches and so far
has not been very successful. However, we
hope to be more fortunate in
the coming athletic and swimming sports.
In general Drake girls have proved to be a very good house this
and there has been no lack of enthusiasm and support. I should
like to thank all those who did turn up to cheer the House
during the various
matches and also those who helped with
the refreshments. These were
financed from the Drake House Fund to which all (I trust!)
The juniors were especially conscientious about this, and
it was they who
during the Christmas term made up from scraps of wool a blanket for
the orphans. House literary competitions seem to be lacking this
although it it hoped that they will be resumed during the next.
In particular I should like to thank Miss Turner and also Miss
Gallacher whose support, enthusiasm and
encouragement have been unfailing. A special mention must also go to Caroline Fox,
our Games Captain, end much of Drake's success can be attributed to her.
Finally Caroline and I should like to say goodbye and wish the
every success in the future.
Caroline Gary (House Captain)
Caroline Fox (Games Captain)
Hawkins House Report
I would like to begin by thanking Tim Patterson, my Games
for undimmed enthusiasm throughout the year. Also my thanks go
Frost, C. Donnelly, Scott Tilson and Bob Gamble for arranging
for inter-house games.
Unfortunately, due to lack of response from the other houses,
have been no activities other than the
standard games to report on.
Hawkins had another successful season on the Rugby field. We
represented by six school players evenjy
distributed between the forwards
and backs. Davis was the "Shining Light" in
the forwards and fully deserved his school colours at the end of season.
Burns and Vincenti, our
other school forwards, played with enthusiasm
and consistency. Gamble,
Woodcock, and Lavin made our back division the best in the
school, and with strong, straight running posed many problems
for the opposition.
Callaghan also deserves mention for a fine season at scrum-half. In the
seven-a-side, Hawkins distinguished themselves. Thanks to two
Lavin we moved into the final where
Gamble, switched to scrum-half in
the absence of Callaghan, scored three tries.
Woodcock was undoubtedly
our "player of the year" for his good work in defence and
attack, and also his goal-kicking.
This year's Colts
rugby team had a fair year but we could have done
better. Everyone put a big effort into each game, but a few unlucky
breaks doomed us.
The game against
St. Vincent, which was due to start at 10.15, started
at 9.00, so we ended up playing three men short for the first part of the
There was some
excellent playing from Chris Donnelly and Carl Bacchus, third years who should prove a great asset to the Colts next year.
Clay Owens, and Scott Tilson, Americans unfamiliar
with the game, found it very exciting.
In all, it was a
team effort and everyone did his part.
Rugby team had a very successful season without
defeat. The first match was against St. Vincent whom we
beat 9-0. The
second match, against Nelson was won 22-3. Our final match
decided the competition. After a good match against our
Drake, we emerged
the winners by 15-5. We also won our section in the
tournament, again beating Drake in the final. The attendance
was good and I would like to thank, on behalf of the housemaster, all the
boys that participated.
played with inconsistency. With a fair amount of talent
in the side we were still unable to make an impression. With three school
Gamble, Lavin and Woodcock, we should have done much
better. Stanyard showed himself to be a skillful and
and if the rest
of the side had shown such attributes we would undoubtedly
have done better. Congratulations to Burns for his brave efforts
The team this
year was full of enthusiasm but, alas, did not have
sufficient skill to make an impression. The team was unlucky in only obtaining
one point for all its efforts. Two players who stood out in the
matches were Tony Bobbins (goalkeeper) and David Theobald, the latter
top goal scorer. Hoping for better things in the six-a-side, the
team played with great vigour only to be narrowly beaten in
games by one corner point.
Junior football team, this season was not one of the
gaining only four points out of a possible twelve. This was due
to the fact that the opposition was very strong. The four points
came with two wins over Drake.
the inter-house cross-country we came
fourth with 321 points. C. Donnelly, for the Colts, won a very
hard fought second place in a
time of 15 min. 15 sees.
the basket-ball championship, Hawkins won a well deserved second
Hawkins' overall position in the orienteering was a
fourth with 480 points. A special mention must go to Martin
came third equal with 123 points. All but one completed the
Adrian C. Worley
Hawkins House Report
At the beginning of the year, we welcomed Miss Wood as House
Mistress. Since then she has helped the Hockey and Netball teams
alike, encouraging players in senior and junior events. We were all very sad to
say good-bye to Debby
Bradley, formerly Games Captain. At the moment
she is building up a
basket-ball team in a school in the Canary Isles, whilst back at
Tal Handaq Jo Robinson has taken over her job. I'd like
to thank both Jo and Miss
Wood for all their help, and the house for all
their support throughout the
The results of the inter-house team events were not as promising
the previous year; Hockey, after much hard work, brought us
third in all,
whereas we were first last year. In netball we came last - -
year), but although the Badminton tournament was not completed
early exams., we were holding the highest score.
Finally I'd like to thank all Hawkins house for their constant
and enthusiasm all through the year.
Nelson House Report
This year Nelson Juniors enjoyed a moderate degree of success,
coming second in all three of the main events. In football the
won three, drew one, and lost two. The outstanding players being
Boyd, S. Ginn, C. Riggs and B. Jones. In the cross-country,
came first and second, with D. Noonan establishing a new record
time of 15.32 minutes, closely followed by M. Robbins.
The Rugby team won one, drew one and lost to the strong Hawkins
team. In this, the best players were K. Jones and B. Kerry.
though small in stature, and small in numbers showed that skill
is paramount when it comes to winning games! The only section
lost was the Soccer six-a-side.
The Rugby team
played intelligently, keeping the game open and
feeding their three-quarters. Credit must go to the new boys
Anderson and Geoff Hart who played extremely well, and to Pete
Southwick who was without a doubt Nelson's best player. We also won
with all members playing with spirit and determination.
The Colts won the
Soccer league in great style, dropping onlv one
point in six games. Nelson played with an excellent team spirit, with
Chandler and Billy Griffiths playing well in every game and
league's top scorer.
the Colts in the six-a-side competition. Starting as firm
favourites we soon lost our hold and finished a sorry
was snother triumph for the Nelson Colts. Credit
for this must go to Mike Smith and Mike Rowlings who ran particularly
A very good year
for Nelson Colts mainly due to an excellent team
spirit and a willingness to participate and enjoy their games.
football team had a moderately successful season taking
second place on goal average. The house was served well by P. Walker,
H. Lineham and J. Molden (Captain). It was in the six-a-side
competition where the seniors excelled themselves, disposing of the
all-round Drake team in the final. T. McCole proved himself to
be a capable goalkeeper
The Rugby team
played well winning two games and drawing the
conceding a point. Nelson had to be content with third place
seven-a-side competition after a tough battle with Hawkins in
Nelson kept up its
good record in Orienteering by winning this event
for the third time. Most of the credit for this goes to Dick Mason whose
map reading and determined running earned his first place.
second over-all in the Cross-Country mainly due to the
efforts of the Juniors and Colts.
cup was retained by an exceptionally strong
Nelson team, who
only lost one game out of twenty-seven.
cup was won by a Nelson team who were strong in
defence and quick
in attack, and proved to be far superior to the opposition.
effort by all members of the house has resulted in our
winning half the cups so far presented and being firm favourites to win
the Inter-House Competition Cup. In conclusion I wish to express
to all who have worked so hard to bring about such a successful
year for Nelson. In particular my thanks to John Molden our games Captain;
his skill at various sports and his organisation of our Senior
games has in no small way contributed to our leading position. To
my thanks for their help and encouragement throughout the
Pete Walker (House Captain)
Nelson House Report
This year has
been a highly successful one for Nelson girls. I would
like to thank all those who have participated in house matches, support
activities has been more than satisfactory. In particular I
would like to thank Rita Auger our Games Captain. She has worked efficiently and
her persistent efforts to rally support have not gone
Tournament, the Nelson team, won all their matches, with the
exception of that against St. Vincent and their overall
position was second.
results were even more satisfactory. The Seniors won
two of their matches and drew the third, whilst the Juniors won two and
lost the third. The results were extremely close but Nelson
hold first position on goal average. The Athletics and Swimming
to come. Support could be better for the Athletics and I
hope this point
is heeded by all
Nelson girls, particularly the Fourth years. House activities
this year have been centred around Sport. It is pleasing to note
the contributions made from Nelson girls in school teams in
Special notice should be given to those girls, particularly
years. House activities this year have been centred around
Sport. It is pleasing to note the contribution made by Nelson girls, in
teams in Netball, Hockey and Basketball. Special notice should
be given to those girls, particularly from the younger
section of the House,
participating in outside activities such as the guides, have
hard in collecting for charities.
appreciation this year seems to have suffered but perhaps,
nearer the end of term, some efforts will be made to rectify the
I would like to
conclude by thanking Mrs. Harland, our housemistress, who
has displayed keen
interest and has given great encouragement in all
House affairs throughout the year. As this is probably my last year at
I will take the opportunity to express my hopes that Nelson will
continue to do well in the future and wish good luck
to all its members.
St. Vincent House Report
This has not
been one of St. Vincent's better years, although I hasten
to add that this has been due to no lack of effort or team
competition proved to be our only major success of
the year, and we won the overall championship, dropping only nine points
thirty six. Our seniors in particular deserve credit for
in their six games. Barry, Molden, Vickery, Morgan and
Ward all played for the school. We finished third in the
of the programme of nine games, St. Vincent were
firmly established at the foot of the table. Any hopes of the Seniors
in a high position, were ruined by injuries to Bradberry and
while our Colts and Juniors suffered from lack of experience.
Morris and Vincenti played for the First XV. We improved
our position by
one place in
A string of
successive wins came to an abrupt halt this year, when
St. Vincent gained only third place in the annual cross-country championships.
This was despite taking the first three individual places in the
Senior race, and courageous runs by Colts and Juniors.
I am sorry to say
that we were unable to field our best side in any of the games,
and as a result finished only third in the competition. In
we took the field with only three men; a record speaking for
enthusiasm was shown for this relatively new event, and
we gained second place, equal with Drake.
As can be seen
from the above results, St. Vincent have not been as
successful as in previous years. However, with the Cricket, Athletics and
sports still to come, there is plenty of time to make amends,
and I am sure that we will.
Finally, I would
like to extend grateful thanks to Messrs Jackson, Davies, Smith,
Kitson, and Bonner, for their untiring support throughout
Pete Ward (House Captain)
St. Vincent House Report
this year have been concerned mainly with sport.
The teams were enthusiastic and they enjoyed participating in the various
proved to be very successful in certain cases, especially the
and I hope this will continue in the future. This was not only
due to the players themselves, but to the keen supporters who
so special thanks to all concerned.
I would like to
thank Carol Turley, our Games Captain, who with constant enthusiasm organised the teams and helped them to success, and
to Ann Broadway deputy Games Captain, and Julie Soar
deputy House Captain for their help.
Finally on behalf
of St. Vincent, I would like to thank Mrs. McClure
for her constant assistance and encouragement, which has helped the
throughout the year.
Sue Gray (House Captain)
Owing to much
enthusiasm and hard practising by all our Netball
teams we were able to reach first place overall, with first in the Juniors
school and a third in the Seniors, after many close and exciting
games. So congratulations to all teams. Alas, our Hockey was not
quite so successful, coming third after many hard fought games.
doubles are not yet finished but we seem to stand a
good chance of
being well placed.
In the future we
are looking forward to and training for Sports Day
and the Athletics. We also hope to have inter-house tennis matches in the
future. Lastly I would like to thank all St. Vincent girls for
their constant enthusiasm, Sue Gray our House Captain for
her continuous help during practices and also Mrs McClure for
her encouragement and
organising the games.
Carol Turley (Games Captain)
(1st Luqa (Home) Malta G.C.)
There are many scout groups in Malta, but the 1st Luqa Home
is the only Air-Scout troop on the
Our Headquarters is stationed at R.A.F. Safi. We have been given
some large huts for our scouting uses.
We are supervised by four scout leaders, although we are going
over to a new system of the Four Patrol
Leaders running the troop. The four patrols are Nimrods,
Jaguars and Phantoms, all of which are recognised aircraft. The meeting
roughly 6.00 p.m. and finishes at 8.00 p.m. on a Friday night.
From the new system of the
Patrol Leaders running the troop we are trying to
extend the meeting a little
longer so we can do more scoutings.
We of course have our own special uniform. It is not a strict
uniform, only a pair of school trousers, a blue shirt with long
sleeves, a green and
gold neckerchief which can be obtained from the Scout Shop at
and the Scout Headquarters at Safi. An
R.A.F. blue beret is included or,
if that is not possible, a navy blue beret from
the Scout Shop (Floriana). Badges are provided when the person
joins the scouting group. Black or
brown shoes can be worn. The normal subscription asked for
is 1/- a
week, which is used for equipment, scouting aids, badges from
the U.K. and camping equipment etc. There is also a tuck shop
where soft drinks
The Patrol Leaders arrange many exciting camps, hikes and
exhibitions etc. We have just finished a very exciting Easter
Camp which Lightning won on points and were rewarded with a
shield which records the
annual Easter Camp winners. Our G.S.L. (Group Scout
Leader) is trying to arrange a summer camp for us in Cyprus
(1971). If we do not go to
Cyprus we will definitely go to R.A.F. II Qortin on Gozo. We are
that before this camp there will be many camps layed on for us.
a number of tents and good camping ground. The troop welcomes
any newcomers who wish to become a part of the world-wide
This year saw
the revival of the Society which has been lying dormant
for some months. It is now under the supervision of Mr. Getter.
Membership is open to all
years of the school and the members now range
from the first
to the fifth forms.
but fascinating processes of developing and printing are
taught to all members and they are encouraged to undertake
themselves. The school's darkroom is not enormous but it is adequate
and all of the equipment needed is provided.
The society has
not yet re-established itself completely but we are
looking forward to next year when it should be thriving.
BRIDGE CLUB REPORT
A small but
enthusiastic group of 5th and 6th Form pupils have recently
been introduced to the intricasies of Rubber Bridge by Messrs.
Butler. Tuition and practice is given on Thursdays in the
quiet of the
Prefects Room after school and it is hoped that more pupils
will accept the challenge of this great game when the club re-starts in
term. The only requirement is a knowledge of the mechanics
of simple Whist, an enjoyment of card play, and a certain amount of low
THE ART CLUB
The Art Club is
usually held every Thursday after school in Room
27Q and is organised by Mr. Singleton.
All sorts of
materials are available and we can do any work we like.
Sometimes we have
models for life drawing but this is mainly for the 'O' and 'A'
level candidates. Anyone may go along but they must remember
to put their names down for the late bus.
A school Paperback
Club has recently been established with the
introducing pupils to a wide variety of cheap, yet good quality
books, many of which are difficult to obtain.
Animal Stories, Hobbies, Classics, Poetry, Humour,
Quizzes, Sport, References, and Handbooks are among the various selections
Prices range from
3/- to 6/- and pupils may pay outright or by instalments if they wish; some prices are cheaper than ordinary retail
receives a news sheet each month, giving details of
available, and various competitions which are held; in addition,
five books purchased pupils receive one free book.
Books may also be
purchased for parents, brothers and sisters if
Any pupil is free
to take part in the scheme, and there is no obligation to buy any book at all if you do not wish to do so.
All pupils who are
interested in this club are asked to consult Mr.
A. Strong or any other member of the English Department, who will give
During the year the various musical activities have continued
around the school. A recorder group was formed after Christmas, and
now appears regularly at
school Assembly. The senior and junior choirs appeared with
some success at prize-day and have continued to meet during the term,
although members of
both seem to become rather absent-minded about regular
attendance, especially when the weather is good. There is a
small instrumental group
which will have made its debut by the time this article
One of the most welcome innovations in school music has been the
formation of a folk-club,
under the general supervision of Mr. Bonner.
Some very pleasing music has
been forthcoming, including original songs
by members. Several sixth
formers led the singing of three songs by
Sydney Carter at assembly
just before Easter, and it was felt that this sort
of thing could well be done
more often, given suitable material.
DUKE OF EDINBURGH
During the course of the Autumn term seventeen young people expressed an interest in becoming candidates for
the award scheme. Of
these ten were girls and all in the fourth forms. With one
candidates are entering the scheme at Bronze level. There has been
some difficulty in making arrangements for suitable courses to
for candidates but most are now occupied in following activities
in one or two sections of the scheme.
It is planned to carry out the expedition training and the
itself during the course of the current term. It should be
success in the scheme depends very largely on the initiative,
and interest of the candidates themselves. Several members of
fully prepared to give help and advice where required but the
must come from you — you who have entered the scheme.
The folk club started at the beginning of the Spring Term, and
an unsteady start began to get regular
support mainly from the junior
forms in the school. It was helped during the first few
weeks by some stirring performances from Dominic Wujastyk, Mark Bradberry and Janet
Harvey, whose efforts prompted other members of the club to come
forward and do what proved to be some
excellent performances. Particular
mention should be made of two separate
groups of second form girls. The first group performed two of
their own compositions, which were
really of a very high standard and the second group
produced some excellent arrangements of popular folk-songs.
We would welcome any new members next session, particularly
those who are willing to add their vocal or
instrumental talents to those
already in the school.
there are many former pupils who leave Tal Handaq
and are never heard of again. This however is counteracted by the fact
who have left a considerable time ago continue to give us news
of themselves. Martin Fuller who gained a "First" at Exeter last year has
accepted by the Administrative Branch of the Civil Service.
With the increase
of University places during the last decade there
are quite a few former pupils reading for degrees at various Universities
Colleges of Education. Manchester appears to be a popular
Christopher Stevens and Peter Ross are in their final year
Radford in his second year - - his wife (Josephine Mogridge) is at a
College of Education - - Evan Potts is in his first year,
reading Business Studies.
At Leeds, Linda
Wigglesworth, after gaining three Grade A's at A level
is reading Modern Languages -- also there, is Martin Powell who is
following a Business Course.
Wendy Coupe is in
her third year at Homerton College of Education
and has been accepted by Newnham College to take a degree in Chemistry
and Education - - Her sister Christine is working for A levels
at Sut-ton High School.
Cameron Beason is
in his first year at Southampton, while Linda
Oiver has started
At Colleges of
Education are Rosemary Arden, in her first year at
Roehampton, Janet Baker in her last year at St. Osyth's College of Education,
Clacton, Lynn Edmonds has finished her course at Bretton Hall
and now married (Mrs. Stuart Reeves) and is teaching.
Bill Duncan who
qualified at the same college is in his second year at
an all boys school in Bermuda which he enjoys very much. He had
previously taught at Wakefield Grammar for a couple of years.
his teaching job
with that of organist at the parish church. Pamela Gard,
whose mother was for some time the school secretary, has been teaching
Maths in a
boys' school but is now on supply in the Bristol area as she
intended to get married this spring.
Ewart Shaw is in
Australia, he hopes to enter a University there.
Felicity Burge and Christopher McReady were married in
- they first met in the VI form. Felicity works with the B.B.C.
on the Open
and Christopher is an account executive with Bruning's
(Gallop) has moved to Northamptonshire, she now
has two small
One of her
contemporaries, Pamela Hinton has a six months' old little
girl and Paula Goodale (Gilbert) has just had a son.
is working in an hotel in St. Albans and is really
enjoying her job, she tried several careers before finding the right one.
She is near
Rosemary Dearden who is teaching Geography in the Grammar School at Tring so they meet frequently and I am sure
Handaq days are often discussed.
Linda Perry, after
a year in a bank, has changed her job to the Southern Gas Board
where she is working with their conversion to Natural Gas.
news of Heather Coggeshall who is now working as a Shorthand-Typist
for an Electrical firm in Fareham.
Susan Dodson is a
management-trainee with Marks and Spencer.
is studying surveying and his brother Roy is doing
a three year course at Southampton Technical College in Boat
Some of our
American pupils have sent us news — Debby Bradley
is at the
American school at Las Palmas and returns to Texas in the Summer
to start a University course in September. Patricia Goodwin is
nursing course at the University of New Mexico. Richard Ball is
the United States Navy.
has joined the Police Force and Jane Savage is a
with the Cardiff Force — she thoroughly enjoyed the
Patricia Longland and Rosemary Fisher are all doing
Secretarial work in London.
Helen Springhall called at Tal Handaq recently — she is working
with I.C.I, near Reading.
has been working with her step-father's firm in Holland
but hopes to
return to Malta if she can find a suitable post.
and Nicola Barraclough have settled happily into their
new schools at
Farnham and Christine Wilkinson is at Guthlaxton Upper
Leicester where, in spite of there being only 4th, 5th and 6th
there are forty prefects.
This is only a
cross-section of the many activities and courses
ex-pupils are doing but there is, in all their letters, a real
and feeling of nostalgia for their days at Tal Handaq which is
that The Services Secondary School is not such a bad place after
FROM THE EDITORS
Committee would like to thank all those who have
often at short notice, with the production of this magazine,
particular to Miss MacKay, Mrs. Ellul and Theresa Smith who
the copy. Our gratitude is also due to our advertisers without whose
financial aid there would be no magazine -- please support
the advertisers and mention the Magazine if you can.
photograph is by courtesy of Photographic section H.M.S.
ARK ROYAL, those of Hansel and Gretel by courtesy of the Admiralty
Photographic Section and those of the Cross Country races
by courtesy of Father Hessery.
Finally may we add that if any members of the school find
the magazine —
and we are sure there are many faults to be found -then
the solution lies in their hands; contribute to the next
and make it a better one.
School Characters (4)
Sarginson Chris. Lawton
Adrian Worley Robert Etwell
Lawrence Valerie Rees
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