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Briggensians Calendar for 1997

Chairman's Report of Annual Dinner 1996

Headmaster's Report for Academic Year 1995-1996

Brigg Sixth Form - Report, Results and Students' Destinations

News of Old Briggensians Near and Far


Sports Reports

Stop Press!

Committee Members 1996-1997

The Annual Dinner 1997

Dates for 1997


Committee Meeting 1 Friday 24 January 7.45

Briggensians' Association 20th Annual Dinner - Saturday 15 March 1997
12.00 Elsham Golf Club 12.00
7.30 pm for 8.00 pm
Guest Speaker: George M Gunson - see the end of this Newsletter.

Committee Meeting 2 Friday 6 June 7.45

Summer Sports and Tea Party - Father's Day - Sunday, 15 June 1997
School Field at 2.00 p.m.
Cricket - Youth and Experience XI's, Tennis, Rounders

Winter Sports School Field at 6.00 pm - Friday 12 September 1997
Football, Male and Female Hockey, Netball

Committee Meeting 3 Friday 3 October 7.30 followed by the AGM:
AGM Friday 3 October 1997, Upper School Library 7.30 p.m.

Briggensians' Open Golf Championships
Individual Stapleford Rules
Spring meeting at Forest Pines Golf Club (Briggate Lodge)
Tuesday 27 May 1997 - 1st Tee off 3.30 p.m.
Autumn Meeting at Elsham Golf Club - Sunday, 26 October 1997
1st Tee off 12.30 p.m

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Chairman's Report of the Annual Dinner 1996

The 19th Annual Dinner was held at Elsham Golf Club on Saturday, 16 March, 1996. The waitress service and slight decline in numbers (41) ensured that everything went smoothly and that all were quickly served with an excellent meal. Mr. Vernon Atkin again ably performed the task of Toastmaster. Heather Monteith, a 6th Former at the Sir John Nelthorpe School, presented a most instructive and at times amusing report on her educational expedition to Iceland. The whole experience she found most rewarding and her delivery, charm, knowledge and confidence did great credit to her school, her parents and herself.

The Headteacher, Mr. David Brittain, gave his usual interesting report on the many activities and successes which the Sir John Nelthorpe School achieved during the previous year.

Mr. Peter Gregory replied on behalf of the Briggensians' Association congratulating the speakers, thanking all who helped to make the evening a success, and urging those present to persuade others, particularly younger ones, to join the Association.

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Head's Notes

1996 was, on balance, a splendid year for the school. The achievements towered over the disappointments and made the stress of Ofsted all worthwhile.

We began 1996 with the shadows of Inspection lengthening as we approached the appointed week in February. In the event, we avoided any hysterics or panic attacks; just did a professional job. The preparation proved to be worse than the inspection.

The report was splendid, full of praise for pupils, parents, governors and teaching and support staff. Throughout the report students are praised for their attitude, which is described as exemplary, for taking pride in their work, being friendly, helpful, and enthusiastic about all aspects of school life.

Teaching received excellent grades, as did the management and so we were regarded as giving value for money. The exam. results were well above national averages and put the school in the top 25%. Altogether a particularly satisfying report with most criticism reserved for the LEA because we lacked adequate buildings for indoor PE, an Upper School Canteen and space for collective worship. The report concludes that the school can be justifiably proud of its reputation and the achievements of its pupils.

Just as we were celebrating the Ofsted report, the news broke of financial panic over the April budget. The change to North Lincolnshire was indeed going to be the financial disaster we had predicted. Massive cuts in services, the highest increase in Community Charge in the country and class sizes about as high as you could go. There were protest marches by pupils, parents, teachers and governors. Everyone was targeted from MP's to local politicians. At the eleventh hour reserves were found to shore up the system by spending 15% more on education than the Government's recommendations. Panic almost over!

Disappointment came as we passed the point when a start could be made on the Astroturf pitch if we were to have it ready for 1996/7. As we took our summer break the LEA were just beginning to do soil and drainage tests.

These looked good, but current legal differences with the LEA still prevent us going ahead, even if the money is granted by the Lottery. We had such optimism as we started 1996; let us hope 1997 is the year when real progress is made.

The summer GCSE exam results were again above national averages and highly commendable, given the ability profile of the year group. Out of 130 students:-

25 achieved 9 or more higher grades A* to C
43 achieved 7 or more higher grades A* to C
61 achieved 5 or more higher grades A* to C

At 'A' level results were again very sound with five subjects recording 100% pass rates and three others in the 90's. Two students gained places at Cambridge, Katie Smith to study Sciences at Girton and John Heath, Modern Languages at Pembroke.

Staff news picks out three long-serving teachers who have taken premature retirement.

Mrs. Pam Braithwaite who was in charge of Technology (Food and Fabrics) and GNVQ Co-ordinator left us after a considerable period of illness. She is well on the way to recovery now that she is free from the stress and strain of school.

Mr. Keith Walker (and his wife Wendy) took their leave in the summer and have moved to France. Keith taught French and Business Studies and was a Head of Year.

Mr. Charles Mailing, after 34 years' service, left us at Christmas '96 and will be remembered in his Grammar School days as Head of Music, but at Sir John Nelthorpe for teaching German, being Head of Year and latterly External Examinations Officer.

All three staff were closely involved with foreign exchange visits and their contributions beyond the classroom will be greatly missed.

I am pleased to say that Art, Music, Drama and Sport all continue to flourish. This year the Art Department held an exhibition and opened a shop in Brigg for a week; a most successful venture. Music concerts were again splendid and ended the year with a packed St. John's Church for the Christmas Concert. The Drama production this year was Nicolai Gogol's "The Government Inspector" and offered a splendid variation from the musicals of the recent past.

In sport the girls have been particularly successful at Hockey with the U13, U15 and U16's all winning their tournaments and our pupils dominating the county side. They also did very well at Tennis with the U15 reaching the finals of the district Midland Bank championships.

The boys had excellent seasons at Soccer, Hockey and Cricket. The U14 Soccer team were Scunthorpe and District champions; the Junior Hockey team became County champions and the U15 Cricket team reached the last 16 of the Lords Taverners Trophy - Duncan Heath played for England U15's and Richard Antcliffe for the Lincolnshire U16 side.

Altogether a satisfying year - certainly one to remember.

Finally for the IT buffs we have now expanded our facilities so that you can read our 'home page' on the Internet address:-

and send us your Briggensian News by E-Mail at [updated]
If you want to get into the picture then we have a video link via our ISDN line and we can chat face-to-face on 01652 659581.

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Brigg Sixth Form

Once more Brigg students have excelled in A-level examinations. The forty-six A-level candidates each gained an average 2.4 A-level passes. Five subjects had 100% pass rates - German, Music, Further Mathematics, Physics and English. Mathematics also had an outstanding 90.9% pass rate. Almost half of the students gained the top three grades, which means that the placement rate in higher education will be at least as successful as usual, despite the tough competition for places.

Students who did particularly well include Katie Smith, who gained A grades in Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics and General Studies. She will be taking up a place at Girton College, Cambridge, to read Natural Sciences. Michael Bessell gained A grades in Biology, General Studies and Mathematics and B grades in Chemistry and Further Mathematics. He also passed the Special Papers in both Biology and Mathematics. Mike is still pondering his options. John Heath gained an outstanding A in German and A in English Literature, besides a B in History and the Special Paper in German. Heather Monteith gained A grades in both Geography and General Studies, and the Special Paper in Geography. Heather also gained B grades in Mathematics and Chemistry, and is to read Geography at Leeds University. David Green gained A in each of Mathematics, Further Mathematics, and Physics, and Special Paper in Mathematics. He also gained Grade C in German. David is to read Computing at Imperial College, London.

It is also a pleasure to congratulate our adult students. Margaret Taylor has been successful in her German A-level, and Sandra Robinson in her English Literature. Sandra will now read Combined Studies at Humberside University.

Many congratulations to all our students who have done so well, and all the staff wish them every success in the future.

A-Level Results 1996

Claire Bailey A&D, EL, GS, G
Kelly Belche r GSA, M
Michael Bessell B*, C., FM, GS, M*
Rebecca Booth EL
Rachel Branton EL, GS, MU, THS
Carl Britcliffe B, GS, P
Emma Cooper EL, GS, THS
Victoria Cozens A&D, EL
Katie Dent A&D
Sally Dring B, EL, GS
Paul Farman EL
Rachael Freeman B, G
David Green FM, GE, M*, P
Peterjon Hastings GS
Nicola Hazeldine EL
John Heath EL, GE*, H
Victoria Johnson EL
Jonathan Joinson M, P
Helen Joseph B, C, GS, G
Debra Kelly A&D, EL, F, GS
Paul Lambert M, P
Heather Monteith C, GS, G*, M
Christopher Moore GS, G, P
Gavin O'Sullivan FM, M, P
Kevin Percival B, G
Matthew Pett EL
Nathan Porter B
Ross Richards GS, GE, M
Joanne Richardson EL, GS
Sandra Robinson EL
Joanne Sharp A&D
John Sisman B, EL, GS, G
Katie Smith B, C, GS, M, FM (AS)
Laura Smith EL, GS, G, THS
Margaret Taylor GE
Joanna Thomson B, EL, GS
Jonathan Turnbull EL, MU
Lisa Turner EL, F, GE
Sarah Vardy GS, M
Kate Vincent B, GS, P
Abigail Wallis A&D, EL, GS, F (AS)
Lee Warner A&D
Sarah White A&D, B, H
Sarah Yearnshire B, GS

Key to Exam Codes

A&D Art & Design

F French

GE German

P Physics

B Biology

FM Further Maths

H History

THS Theatre Studies

C Chemistry

GS General Studies

M Mathematics

* Special Paper

EL English Literature

G Geography

MU Music

GNVQ Certificates

Neil Cooper
Sara Driffill
Sharon Eardley
Graham Fowler
Linda Holdstock
Carla Hunsley
Claire Jickells
Sara Johnson
Lisa King

Destinations - 1996 Leavers

Claire Bailey Sheffield University, Journalism
Kelly Belcher John Moore's University,
Liverpool, BioMedSci
Rebecca Booth JLC, A Levels
Rachel Branton Year Out
Carl Britcliffe Derby University, Biology
Emma Cooper Bishop Grosseteste, BEd English Studies
Neil Cooper Seeking employment
Victoria Cozens Seeking employment
Sally Dring Lincs & Humb.University, Equine Studies
Sharon Eardley Part-time employment
Paul Farman JLC, A Levels
Rachael Freeman Sheffield Hallam Univ. BioMedSci
David Green Imperial College, London, Computing (Software Eng)
Peterjon Hastings British Steel, Apprenticeship
Nicola Hazeldine Seeking employment
John Heath Pembroke College, Cambridge, Modern Lang.
Sara Johnson Nanny in USA
Victoria Johnson Part-time employment - Leisure centre
Jonathan Joinson Leeds University, Fire Engineering
Helen Joseph Sheffield University, Biological Sciences
Debra Kelly Part-time employment
Paul Lambert Bradford University, Software Eng.
Rachel Lancaster Family business
Richard Maple Seeking employment
Heather Monteith Leeds University,Geog.
Christopher Moore Bradford University, Technol. & Management
Gavin O'Sullivan Sheffield University, Physics
Kevin Percival Wolverhampton University Env. Sci.
Matthew Pett NLC, Art Foundation
Nathan Porter Manchester Met Univ. Env. Health
Ross Richards Derby University, Environ. Monitoring
Joanne Richardson Lincs & Humb. University, Internat. Studies
Joanne Sharp Lincs & Humb. University, Hotel Catering & Inst. Man.
John Sisman Hull University, Geography
Katie Smith Girton College,Cambridge, Nat.Sci.
Laura Smith BHS, Management Trainee
Philippa Spilman Boots
Joanne Thomson Wolverhampton University English
Jonathan Turnbull Goldsmith's College, London, Music
Lisa Turner York University, English/Linguistics
Sarah Vardy Sheffield Hallam Univ. Primary Ed.
Kate Vincent De Montfort University, App.Biol.
Abigail Wallis Bishop Burton Coll. Floristry
Lee Warner NLC, Art Foundation
Sarah White Leeds University, Zoology
Sarah Yearnshire Lincs & Humb. University Food Science

Third Year Sixth

Michael Bessell BSF, A Levels
Katie Dent BSF, GNVQ
Sara Driffill BSF, GNVQ
Graham Fowler BSF, GNVQ
Alison Hilton BSF, GNVQ
Andrew Hodsdon BSF, A Levels
Craig Holmes BSF, A Levels
Simon Wadsley BSF, GNVQ

One-Year Leavers

Claire Jickells Grimsby College, GNVQ Advanced
Helen Radford NLC, NEB Nursing
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Many thanks for all the news sent to me by so many of you, with so many memories you have recalled.

News of Old Briggensians


In the 1996 Newsletter the death of Dr Henthorn was recorded and may I say that many former pupils wrote in to recall many memories and express their sorrow at his passing away. Many of the letters referred to Dr Henthorn as a member of staff they adored. He was in many eyes a great man, an inspiring man, a lovable man, and although a great loss, will have left his mark with many a Briggensian.

I am going to start this year's news by going up to Scotland where a letter came from Charles Eccles, Forfar, Angus,. Charles was in School House from 1941-46 and, like so many former scholars, refers to these days as the happiest days of his life, even though he was caned by 'Duffy' Daughton and 'Stan' Matthews. In his first year Charles made a life-long friendship with J C White, OBE MA (Ancholme) whilst brass rubbing at Bigby and Broughton. After School Cert. he studied Medicine at Sheffield University, having to do National Service during which he was commissioned in the Royal Artillery. He qualified MRCSLRCP in 1955. In 1953 he married, and now has 5 children and 9 grandchildren. Charles spent 4 years in hospital doing surgery then teaching Human Anatomy in Sheffield, 6 years in Tanganyika and 12 years in Dundee. While at school Charles used to play golf at Elsham with Raif Markarian who later became a Headmaster at a school in England. When Charles visited the present school it was strange to see the new buildings but seemed a big improvement on the old wooden huts where the junior school was taught. He remembers the wooden building used for storing School House bicycles next to the swimming pool. Charles saw the new and old School Houses and he remembers that the four dormitories were called New and Old, Top and Lower. These have been successfully altered into very pleasant classrooms with a wonderful view across the school field. Occasionally Charles used to cut the grass and mark the lines on the tennis courts.

Charles ends by saying that he is pleased that the school is co-educational as it seems very unnatural to him for boys and girls to be separated, and he says at one time he used to be very shy of girls. He likes the name of the school and wishes it continued success. Many thanks Charles for your letter and all your memories.

Somebody else who has a memory or two is Harry BOTTON spelt in capital letters so nobody will spell it wrongly! Harry was asked by his grandchildren what he had done as a boy and so in 1993 he started to write a few paragraphs, which expanded into 300 A4 sheets of paper. When he got to the year 1930 he thought it was too brief just to tell them he was at Brigg Grammar School for 6 years and so began a brief history of the founding of the School. At this point close contact was made with Dr Henthorn and help and advice given to Harry in the development of the notes. At one point Harry visited Dr Henthorn and, over a glass of sherry with school photographs spread about, many memories were re-lived of the 1930's. Harry reminded Dr H of the activities on the football field in 1936 when, in the company of 'Chips' Morris and Messrs Dodd and Pimlott, joined members of the School 1st and 2nd XIs during the Thursday evening practice matches. Harry was the 2nd XI goalkeeper (35/36 year) and he remembers well what an awesone experience it was to see them thundering down the slope towards the School House goal, scattering defenders in all directions. There was no 'by your leave' or 'after you, sir' it was a case of 'sauve-qui-peut'. Apparently before coming to Brigg, Toddy and Chips had both been rugby players, but they certainly made up in endeavour and enthusiasm what they lacked in skill.

Harry had read about P D J Campbell, who he remembers as an excellent medium fast bowler. He had good reason to remember him, for it was he who, with his first ball to him in the School versus Old Boys in 1936, found a gap in 'the gate' and removed him from the crease. There were happier cricket memories with Alan Thompson - his post-war solicitor.

He and Harry played in the same Platoon and Company teams when they were in the Scunthorpe Territorial Army Company - the 384th Searchlight Company RETA - matches being played pre-war during Annual Camp in 1939 and later in Leadgate, County Durham and South Shields. Harry was sorry to read of the death of Clem Dawson.

Although he was 5 years his junior he remembers his efforts on the sports field for Sheffield House, with his contemporaries Tommy Brown and Walter Jackson.

Finally, another request which we have had in the past - if anyone has a spare copy of volume 2 of Dr Henthorn's School History please get in touch with Harry.

Next we turn a bit closer to home to thank Frank Holmes for his memories. Frank was born in 1909 and lived at Keadby Bridge. In 1920 he won a scholarship to enter Brigg Grammar School as a boarder but reverted to a day boy after his first year. As a boarder he was friendly with a pupil called Clark from Winterton. His dormitory held about 20 beds with the one at the end being occupied by Naylor (who had an elder brother in the school) and was so thin that it was difficult to tell if he was in bed or not! The Housemaster was Mr. Shute whose wife was Matron. Mr. Shute became Headmaster of Carr's Grammar School, Sleaford and was still there when Frank's own son, Peter, was a pupil there. The food in the boarding house was good (jam and eggs had to be provided from home) and each boy had a tuck box which was opened only at morning break. Another day boy friend was Urry and also 'Blackie' (Bradshaw?) who cycled in daily from Saxby all Saints. Frank left BGS in April 1926 to join the Midland Bank where he stayed until his retirement in December 1969 working mainly in South Lincolnshire and Norfolk. Frank married in 1936 and had two children and four grandchildren.

During the 1939-45 war he spent 5 years in the Royal Artillery. Frank visited the school last June and was shown round by our Headteacher, Mr E D Brittain. The day was a delightful occasion as the memories came back to him. Frank lives in Nottingham, and also sends his best wishes to all concerned with SJN School. Many thanks Frank.

Staying in the Nottingham area we hear from a regular interested reader P D J Campbell, Newark, Notts. PDJC as I have said earlier, was one of many people to be saddened by the death of Dr Henthorn for whom he had a great regard and from whom he had received a letter two years earlier. Reading through the news, he had been interested to see that David Sumpter had met Dr Eric Kemp, Bishop of Chichester, who was an exact contemporary of his, reminding us all of the 'pin in the sausage' and who had sung the first two verses of the School Song by H E Bryant. The refrain was 'Fortitudine' and I can say that the same refrain will be sung again at this year's Annual Dinner. PDJC was amazed to read in Gwen Jarvis's account of North Thailand that Chiengmai was having an international airport and of the vast highway development. He had spent several months based in Chiengmai in 1963 where he had stayed with his wife in a small hut which was part of the Railway Hotel, which was the only western type hotel there. Chiengmai was then a pleasant quiet provincial capital with no tourists or tourist attractions. PDJC had been doing a survey for the Thai government, under the Colombo Plan, and had to study the possibility of the Hill Tribes growing tea as an alternative to growing opium in the Golden Triangle. He travelled to the remote villages in the mountains, sometimes spending nights there in the village's bamboo and thatch houses. There were no helicopters or good roads then. Travel on nearly impossible tracks was in a Land Rover and great distances had to be walked. At the end of his stay PDJC produced his report for the Thai Government. Now, instead of growing tea, the easier course is adopted of giving the Hill Tribes the alternative of being tourist attractions, growing flowers, etc. This of course works only on the near fringe of a vast area of mountains where the various Hill Tribes are widely and thinly scattered. Having seen the area as it was in its age old state PDJC has no wish to return now.

Peter Wade wrote to say how much he had enjoyed the 1996 Annual Dinner last March and while talking to Derek Sumpter they had agreed that it would be very nice to attract more of their contemporaries to make up a table of those who were there during the 40's and 50's.

They believe that John Morton may still be at the Grimsby Evening Telegraph and attended the Annual Dinner a few years ago. Also in Grimsby Frank Flear may be pleased to attend and meet some familiar old faces. Apparently Frank is one of the 'Captains of Industry' in Grimsby.

Thank you Peter for all the information and we have noted your good ideas.

Having already mentioned Gwen Jarvis (wife of the late ex-deputy Head) it seems the right time to mention her whereabouts and Peter Jarvis has kindly forwarded the information from Shrewsbury. Gwen is now living in Shrewsbury or at least has a base from which to travel with her brother. Since last year's trip she has been to the Canadian Rockies, Atlanta Georgia, Germany and at the time of writing to us she was in Brunei, Perth, Nullarbar Express, Melbourne, Brisbane, Dubai and then home for a few weeks. Peter keeps in touch with John Furniss, who lives next door, as well as seeing Mike Spencer and another teacher, Keith Woolley who plays the violin in the orchestra.

Brian T Thornalley wrote to us from Willoughby on the Wolds, Loughborough. He stated that the list of teachers remembered by John Gray from the 1929-39 era remained much the same in 1945 when he first attended BGS. Mr Cabourne was then 3B Form Master. In our account last year we had printed 'Woodwork' after Mr Thumbwood's name and as far as Brian remembers 'Thummy' taught Physics to them, including a lesson where the whole class held hands in a line around the lab. to receive the 'electric shock treatment'! By this time, 'Timber' Watts was well established in the woodwork post. Brian has already booked his ticket for the 1997 Annual Dinner and will be accompanied by his School 'hero', none other than Ron W Waller (1942-49) after renewing contact with him two or three years ago.

My next piece of information comes from a visitor who came all the way from New Zealand and was pleased to drop in and visit his old school on 12 September 1996. His name is B M (Bret) Butler who attended BGS from September 1951 to December 1958. He was Head of School, Deputy Head Boy and Captain of Cricket in 1958. Bret went up to Pembroke College, Cambridge and graduated with a BA in 1963 and an MA in 1965. He went to New Zealand in 1965 and was appointed Headmaster of Huntley School in Marton in 1970 and then went on to King's School, Auckland in 1988. Bret was married to a young lady from Auckland in 1968 and they have three sons, Michael, Nicholas and David. Bret was pleased to see Gerry Longden in New Zealand when he and Ann did their 'World Tour' a year or so ago. While looking at the school photographs Bret had clear memories of Roger Dobson, Alan Franks, David Oakes, Peter Roberts, Phil Walling, Rick Carter and many others, including Bas Burton, Bill Towns and Roger Holmes. Memories of staff are just as familiar, to which Bret is very grateful, and begins his list with Bumper Knight, Toddy Henthorn, Chips Morris, Jarvis, Atkins, Bell, Doggy Barker, Richards and Pimlott. Bret was pleased to see the School in good shape, albeit with a different name, no boarders, but nowadays having the presence of girls.

Next we come all the way back to London to Ellis Levinson living in London. I am afraid that we are going to knock you off your perch, as being 86 is certainly not old enough to be the oldest Briggensian because one I know (only a few yards from school) played in the Briggensians Open Golf Tournament this year at the ripe age of 89, as the result sheet shows. Ellis cannot remember hitting W C Cook but the incident reminded him of the days when he travelled by bus to school when he was about 13 or 14. He was foolish enough to knock the conductor's hat off his head in a fit of bravado and was duly reported. Headmaster Bryant had him in his study and gave him six of the best on his rump. It certainly taught him a lesson and, like Cook, he did not offend again. God willing, he hoped to meet Lewis Brown last Summer and was pleased to say that the two of them are in constant communication. Another Old Briggensian who mentioned his age was R J Baxter who said he was 75 years old remaining fit and well and hopes to remain so, as this year he celebrates the 60th anniversary of leaving school! RJ still lives at 61 Oak Avenue, Morecambe, Lancs. LA4 6HY. A bit further north John Rowley (School House '50-'58) wrote in from Prestbury to say 'thank you' for the Newsletter and that he hopes to play in one of the Golf Days.

It is always a pleasure to hear from Donald Sykes and although he sends snippets of information for non-publication, they are always of interest to all, so I keep adding them. Donald reminds us that when Dr Henthorn arrived at Brigg, Peers Ploughman was put into cold storage and he believes, not brought out again until he left. However, being very friendly with Mr Wass (Headmaster of Brigg County) and living in Scawby when Jeremy Wass started and Ploughman was brought out again, Jeremy was handed a copy and whose name should be in it but that of Donald Sykes. Donald sends his 'best wishes' to everyone and is pleased to report that he is still kept active and enjoying life to the full.

Before we hear from people after the 1960's we have a final note for the earlier section from one of our good friends in Canada, Gwen Owen. We have a large number of Briggensians in Canada but nobody is as good at sending back a few lines of news as Gwen. Gwen did in fact visit England to see her Uncle Stan Ford who at the time was in hospital. Her daughter Carol and her youngest son John both work in Ottawa. John works as a computer programmer for Bell Northern Telecom. Her eldest son David and his wife Val and grand-daughter Kimberly (2 years old), still live in Calgary, Alberta.

They have had an extremely cold Christmas this year with great quantities of snow in BC. The heavy snow falls have caused road and airport closures and later flooding in Victoria and Vancouver when the snow melted. At the time of writing travel was still restricted on many of the mountain highways to Vancouver through the Rockies at Alberta and other passes. Two small villages, Coalmont and Tulameenon, much higher ground than Princeton, in the Cascade Mountains, have been cut off from them. Gwen sends her New Year's tidings to all our readers.

More news from Canada comes from Susie Wong (nee Bowler) (1967-69). Ging, her husband, works as an economist with the Federal Government with much of his work focusing on unemployment issues travelling into N. America with occasional trips to Europe. Susie works part time at the Career Clinics which fits in well with a busy family life. Her family includes Emma, who is very keen on diving, Becky (13) who has just returned to gymnastics, Tammy (9) who is very artistic, and Jamie (5) who hopes to become a soccer player. Susie lives in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

Our next piece of news brings us back into the Brigg area from Martin Lawley, Redbourne. Martin was a pupil at BGS from 1969-72 and graduated from University College, Stockton, which is part of the University of Durham, last June gaining a BA (Hons) in Human Sciences. Whilst there Martin developed an interest in Demography (History of Populations) and produced a dissertation on Lincolnshire Farming Marriage Patterns in the 19th Century.

Martin was hoping to go to Hull University last October to expand this research in the form of a MPhil/PhD. Martin hopes to lecture in Demography and Anthropology with specific reference to kinship patterns in rural communities and the social structures thereof. He has been offered co-operation for a second supervisor (in his research) from a member of the Cambridge group for the History of Population and Social Structures. Being a mature student is an experience in itself, being an opportunity to mix with the younger generation and at Stockton 50% of the student body is mature, both generations have to mix as there is a lot of group work. During Martin's time he founded the Cynics Club and the Tennis Club, was treasurer of the Union in 1994 for the duration, secretary of the Culture Recreation and Artistic Appreciation Society (CRAAS) and was able to let the student body understand and appreciate the finer points of the West Coast Underground movement in the late 60's, of the Baader-Meinhof gang, and of North Lincolnshire wit! Martin would like to thank Mr Brittain and Mr Jefferson for letting him do the General Studies A Level paper in 1992 (twenty years after leaving BGS) and also to Mr Lyons for a small piece of advice on his dissertation. The chances were fairly good that Martin would have been seen on a hockey field last November but the location was being a well kept secret.

William Davey who was a member of the boarding house between 1969-74 returned his confirmation slip to let contemporaries know that he is now farming at Searby (5 miles from Brigg) and is married with two teenage sons.

A regular visitor to our school is Nurse Dowie and she left us a few details about her daughters. Elspeth married Eric Day on 15 September 1996 and they are both immigration officers at Heathrow Airport. Helen, who married Shaun Beel, have a second child, Joshua, born on 12.4.95. and a brother for Lucy born 28.3.93.

Having one parent bring us news only leads on to another parent giving us information about his two daughters, and that parent is Mr Lever. Fiona who left school in 1984 had just completed the New York Marathon (November) when the news arrived.

Earlier last Autumn, Fiona had also gained a certificate recording her run up and down Ben Nevis. Apart from these wonderful feats Fiona is a sales and marketing manager for Hi-Tech UK which is an engineering firm exporting its products to twenty six different countries. Moyra, who left school in 1988, is now a Doctor and is a Research Fellow in the University of Aberdeen engaged in medical research. Her laboratory is in the Medical School at Aberdeen Royal Infirmary. She had been the sole UK delegate at an international conference in Washington state. Both daughters are married .

Michael Cosser wrote to us asking to join the Briggensians from Coventry. He left BGS and went to Salford University gaining an honours degree in 1971. Michael spent time in the building industry before embarking on a career in social work where he became Senior Social Worker. However, in 1991 he left to become a Probation Officer and has been with the West Midlands Probation Service. In 1977 Michael married Jenny (a Bristolian) whom he had met while studying for his social work qualification at Bristol Poly (1975-77). They have two children, Emily (now 16) and Alex (now 14). Both attend Bluecoat School in Coventry. Both children keep themselves busy with a variety of activities from swimming to kick boxing. Michael has himself been running for the last 25 years and for the last 14 competitively. Although Michael admits to being unathletic, it's all about enthusiasm, of which Michael has plenty. Michael runs for Coventry Godiva Harriers and edits their Newsletter, which is fun and a chance to meet lots of nice folk. Michael attends his local Baptist Church at Quinton Park (an area of Cheylesmore). Jenny is a Deacon and Michael helps out in the Sunday School. Michael sends his regards to all who remember him especially Mr Jack Moore, Mr Gerry Longden and our esteemed Headteacher, Mr Dave Brittain who Michael refers to as 'a mighty trio indeed'.

Next, our Chairman of the School Governors sends news of Julian and Nicholas O'Neill. Nicholas (1979-83) is currently employed as Legal Counsel to the European Monetary Institute (EMI). The EMI, based in Frankfurt, is the forerunner to the European Central Bank and as such, is charged both with making many of the technical preparations for the start of the European Monetary Union (particularly the launch of the European Community's planned single currency), and also the assessment of which countries meet the economic criteria that have been set to determine eligibility for participation in the single currency. Nicholas has now been working at the EMI on legal issues relating to the introduction of a single European currency for around two years, having previously been employed as a solicitor with a large firm of lawyers based in the City of London - Clifford Chance. Nicholas has produced an article describing a few of the basics concerning European Monetary Union which will have fundamental effects on the whole of Europe.

Should anyone wish to see a copy please send a stamp addressed envelope to school and we will send you a copy of the five page article.

Julian is still very busy in the banking business and based at Nottingham where he is a Nat. West Bank Manager. He and Jacky are now the proud parents of a daughter Laura Jayne who was born on 16 September 1996, being a sister for Lewis. Laura was christened by The Very Rev. David Leaning (1947-55), the Provost of Southwell Minster, in the Minster on Sunday 19 January 1997. One of the Godparents was David Tear who is a committee member of the Association.

Professor Peter Welton (Spittlehouse) 1944-49, who was guest speaker at the Briggensians' Dinner in 1995, is a successful and increasingly popular watercolour artist living at his home and studio in Arnsby, Leicester.

Briggensians, particularly tennis fans, should look with keen interest at this year's Wimbledon posters because Peter was commissioned to create a painting which incorporated the new No. 1 stand and court. The painting will be used to advertise the Wimbledon Championships in June 1997. This is yet another feather in Peter's cap, and the painting joins many other pictures in private and public collections, including that of Her Majesty The Queen.

Jonathan Cresswell ('85-'92) now at RMA Sandhurst after completing his BA Honours degree in French with a 2(i) from Exeter University. He gained his Sandhurst colours for hockey and has been selected to go to America at Easter in the West Point v Sandhurst Challenge (Assault Course/Cross Country exercise). He is tutored by John Pimlot (Brigg Grammar School).

Finally, to end this section, I was very pleased to meet one of my former friends while attending the Elsham Golf Club Presentation Evening. I had noticed the name plaque next to mine but did not say anything until Michael Sparling had stood up on a number of occasions to receive his prizes and that familiar walk gave the game away. It was the first time we had met since leaving school. A short time later on Captain's Drive-in day another familiar face was seen, but I could not place it, but they knew me.
This school mate was Brian Wesley. The three of us decided to fix a date to have a round of golf and before Christmas we met, and with a photograph of us all in Paris, we had a good chat. This sporting venture was in fact the first time that we had done anything together for 31 years. I hasten to add we have already met on a number of occasions since and are slowly catching up on all the news. There is a chance that a bigger re-union may take place in the year 2000 when the 1961-65 and 1961-67 pupils will be celebrating their 50th birthdays. See STOP PRESS later on in this Newsletter.

As usual all the Briggensians who receive a copy of the Newsletter do write back and ask me to convey their thanks to the people who help to produce the finished article. So many Briggensians look forward to the Spring because they know they will be receiving their copy with all the latest news. The number of people helping seems to get bigger each year and with the use of modern technology it is not surprising. Our thanks go to:


Mr D Brittain (Headteacher)
Mrs S Kerridge
Mrs S Barber
Mrs D Clatworthy
Mrs J Revill
Mrs J Musgrave
Mrs C Hodge
Mrs W Wallace

The above people are responsible for the finished article, but I must not forget the people who have contributed with many sporting notes:

Mr A Gibbons (Briggensians Basketball and Football)
Mrs H Cresswell (Briggensians Netball)
Mr D Stones (Briggensians Golf)
Mr E Dodd (various articles)
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Howard Wheeler

Former Briggensian Howard Wheeler, whose news-writing skills did so much to set broadcasting standards in postwar years, has died at the age of 86.

His 30 years in the BBC were mainly at Broadcasting House as chief sub-editor, duty editor and then assistant editor in Radio News.

He was born in Pennsylvania and spent a few childhood years in Canada before his family returned to Lincolnshire, where his father, Denis Wheeler, was appointed chief brewer at Sutton Bean's, Britannia Brewery, Brigg.

Howard went to Brigg Grammar School in 1921 and was there for three years, the Wheelers moving to Grantham when the brewery closed in 1924. He continued his education at King's, after which he went straight into newspapers as a reporter on the Nottingham Guardian. He served on Kent's two leading weeklies and the Cumberland Evening News before joining the Ministry of Information and then the Press Association.

He entered broadcasting in 1942 as an overseas sub-editor and six years later switched to the home bulletin at Broadcasting House, being appointed a duty editor in 1950.

One of his colleagues, Edwin Harrison, wrote: "Howard cared a great deal about the effective use of language and under his direction the headlines and bulletins became crisper and livelier. His aim was always to tell what had happened in simple, direct language and to get rid of officialese and empty, pompous phrases. Thirty years on, the pace of technology plays a great part in news but the word standards set by him remain. In retirement Howard ran several annual courses at Broadcasting House for overseas journalists and helped with recruitment tests for new trainees."

After London, Howard and his wife Cynthia lived in Hove for 20 years before moving to Wokingham to be near their son, Simon. Cynthia, whom he met while working as a young reporter in Carlisle, died in June 1995.

Canon Ben Whitfield
A Brigg Grammar School old boy, who turned down a Canadian bishopric to become a parish priest in North Lincolnshire died at Scunthorpe Hospital on 18 March 1996 at the age of 78.

Canon Ben Whitfield was vicar of Old Clee from 1962-70 and of Gainsborough for the next 10 yrs.
He began working life as a railway clerk at Scunthorpe and trained for the ministry in Canada at Saskatoon University on a scholarship awarded to promising candidates who could otherwise not afford to take holy orders. Such ordinees repaid by serving several years in remote prairie parishes and he would travel more than 100 miles in rough country to take services at three churches on a Sunday. He was in Canada for more than 20 yrs, latterly as Dean of Brandon Cathedral in Manitoba. While in this post he was lined up to succeed the retiring Bishop of the Northern Provinces, but the pull of grass-roots pastoral ministry and the homeland proved stronger. He returned to England with his wife and two daughters in 1960, first becoming vicar of Willoughton. His stay at Old Clee was marked by his campaign to prevent development near the ancient church by persuading parishioners to buy a threatened plot. This led to the formation of the still-active Old Clee Preservation Society.

After Gainsborough, where he reorganised a troubled parish, Canon Whitfield served until his retirement as vicar of Wrawby, where his parishioners included Mrs. Sue Day, daughter of Enoch Powell, she had her children christened at the village church not at Westminster Abbey as they might have been, their grandfather being a Privy Councillor. The vicar and the politician, both Greek scholars and theologians became close friends. Canon Whitfield was on the former Lindsey Education Committee and at Brigg he was a member of the Rotary and Probus Clubs. He retained strong links with Canada, preaching the Centenary sermon at Brandon Cathedral a few years ago, as part of a month's visit arranged for him by Canadian friends.

He is survived by his daughters, Mrs. Judith Clark of Rugby, former head girl of Wintringham School and Mrs. Elizabeth Mather of Lincoln. His wife, Freda, a leader of women's work in the Diocese, died in 1987.

Jack Cressey White

We regret to report that Jack Cressey White (1941-48) died in Madrid on 16 January 1997 after a short illness. Roy O'Neill (1936-45) had weekly telephone conversations with Jack during his terminal illness. The last occasion Jack visited the School was on Sports Day 1994 when he presented the prizes, one of which was the Victor Ludorum his father, Allan White, had won in 1912.

After National Service in the Army, Jack obtained an MA Degree from Oxford University and spent his working life in Madrid as a lecturer in the University and was also attached to the British Council. In recognition of his services to the British Council he was awarded the OBE in 1994. A memorial service was held in Madrid on 8 February 1997.

H E D O'Neill

We regret to report the death after a long illness of HED (Ted) O'Neill (1930-40). After leaving school Ted joined the Fleet Air Arm and did his flying training in Canada where he acquired a love of the country. On his return to civilian life he trained as a teacher at the Wyndham Teachers Training College in Norfolk and spent the whole of his working life in teaching, some of which was in Canada.

Ted will be remembered by his contemporaries as a good all-round athlete holding a number of School records for many years. He continued his interest in athletics later in life as a hobby and compiled an impressive amount of statistics and wrote a number of magazine articles on the subject.

Attending the funeral were two other Old Briggensians, namely John Allen (Lincoln) and Peter Gregory (Brigg).

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Sports Reports

Briggensians' Summer Sports

On a very hot Sunday afternoon only and ladies and girls turned out to play rounders with the Briggensians coming out on top. The cricket players were busy doing all sorts of activities and with many of the school players being unavailable, it was decided to postpone the game and play it one evening. However, the game was not played and so we hope to keep the fixture this year on Sunday 15 June (Father's Day), but we shall only have one game rather than the two we have had in the past.

Winter Sports

By 6 p.m. most of the players for the various teams had arrived and with umpires and referees ready, play began. The male hockey was cancelled due to lack of support. We have had a low turnout in recent years and the games played have not always been School v Briggensians but hopefully we shall be able to play the fixture again this year.

Good turn out for netball and hockey. With netball and hockey both played in Leagues in this area, the Briggensians were winners in both games but the matches were enjoyable to both sides. We look forward to the rounders fixture in the summer.


Football Briggensians 5 School 1
Female Hockey Briggensians 3 School 10
Netball Briggensians 14 School 11

Briggensians' Football

The first eleven - I suppose that should be fourteen now! - are having a marvellous season. They are currently top of the league, in their divisional semi-final next week, and are already in the Nursing Cup Final. Jonti and Jamie Allcock continue to score vital goals, as does Mark Cawkwell from his midfield role. Keith Barnes ('70-'76) has bolstered the defence, as well as parents Gary Yule and Baz Shrimpton.

The Reserves are having a mixed season. Last year we won the double - the league and league cup. This year our form seems to have deserted us. We are out of all the cups and languish below half way in the division.

We all look forward to better times ahead, once the injuries all heal. Duncan Heath has done well in goal - with Ashley Norris and parent Colin Mumby also playing well.

Old Boys' Christmas Football

As ever, the day after Boxing Day produced a very even game. Despite 4 inches of snow, no lines, no ref. and a white ball, we had an excellent game.

The football started off about 11 o'clock with David Allcock bringing off a series of brilliant saves. Martin Shrosbree was majestic and 'Wilf' Willerton a tower of strength as the older Old Boys beat the younger Old Boys by 5 goals to 3. There was a good turn out in the Queens afterwards, with continued games of pool, dominoes, 5's and 3's. darts, a boat race (drinking competition) and finally a quiz. I think the outcome was a draw, but the younger Old Boys claimed a victory by 4 games to 3. So this year, pencil in December 27 - 10.30 a.m. at school, pub lunch, a few beers and a good old chat with some of your old school chums. It's good fun!

Briggensians' Basketball

With a much slimmed down league, the fixtures are almost done. Played 5, won none, drawn 0 and lost 5 at first appears - let's face it - rubbish. But we are a young team (apart from me - the only one old enough to drive) in a men's league. We always aim to score half the opposition's total - and have done so in each game, so that's 5 moral victories. The kids continue to be keen, and appear to enjoy each game, that's what it's all about!

Briggensians' Golf Competition 1995

Venue:- Elsham Golf Club on Sunday 27 October. Twenty six members played in the above event, of which 17 were members of the Elsham Golf Club. The weather was described as good if somewhat breezy or very windy! In the conditions there were some excellent scores returned. At the AGM it was agreed to award the extra Briggensians blazer to the Captain and as tradition in recent years, the winner to be awarded the other.

The winner of the Autumn meeting was Richard Dodd 37 points, as well as being presented with the blazer was presented with the OBA Trophy and Silver Cufflinks by the retiring Captain John Greenbeck. In second place was Andrew Longden 36 points, third Martin Shrosbree also 36 points (back nine).

Other Scores:

John Taylor 34

Val Jeffrey 26

Nick Good 33

Bob Nicholson 24

Derek Stones 23

Vaughan Lindley 31

Charles Mailing 22

Jamie Marshall 33

Gerry Longden 30

Ted Cox 22

Peter Witherden 29

Nick Golland 22

Adrian Gibbons 29

John Monteith 19

John Greenbeck 28

Ted Dodd 19(Captain)

Richard Rivron 17

Dominic Jeffrey 28

Peter Sheedy 14

Peterjon Dodd 27

John Reed 13

Allan Ladlow 27

Simon Herring 6

For the 1996/7 season Ted Dodd was re-elected as President, Ted Cox was elected as Captain and Derek Stones was asked to continue his sterling work as Secretary and Treasurer.

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Malcolm Barnard is now the proud father of Adam - born 19 February.

Samantha Deakin ('79-'84) lives in High Wycombe and is a purser with British Airways.

Sue Broome (nee Lidgett) works in Nottingham hospital as staff sister.

Jane Everitt ('79-'82) works for Gulf Air in Bahrain as cabin crew.

A reunion in the July/August of 2000 has been suggested - any views contact John Hastings or Adrian Gibbons at school

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The Briggensians' Association Committee Members 1996-1997

President Col R Nelthorpe
Chairman Mr J Edlington
Vice Chairman Mr D Tear
Hon.Secretary Mrs B Kernon
Hon.Treasurer Mr J Gregory
Mr D Brittain (School: 656551)
Mr K Cawkwell
Mr J R Gregory
Mr P Gregory
Mr J Hastings (School: 656551)
Mr J O'Neill
Mr R O'Neill
Mr B Taylor
Mrs P Weightman
Head Boy Mr L Fielden
Head Girl Miss K Briggs

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Briggensians Annual Dinner 1997

Guest Speaker: George M Gunson

George was born and brought up in Kirton Lindsey, and attended the Grammar School from 1944 to 1952, then went up to Leicester University College to take an Honours Degree of London University in History. In 1955 he was called up into the Royal Artillery for National Service for two years, and during the final months he was accepted as a trainee for the overseas service of the Bank of London and South America, so that in January 1958 he found himself on his way to Bogota, Colombia, South America. He stayed with this Bank for 18 years, in various executive positions, in Colombia, Guatemala, Venezuela, Spain, and the United States. In 1974, having left the bank at the invitation of Banco de Santander of Spain - he was head hunted - he returned to the United Kingdom to set up their London operation, and ran it for 4 years. Then in 1978 he was head hunted again and became Managing Director of the Euro Latinamerican Bank in London, at the invitation of Barclays Bank and its associate European and Latinamerican shareholders, a post he held for 12 years until it closed down as a consequence of the financial problems affecting the region during the lost decade of the eighties. From 1990 to 1994 he was the General Manager of a Mexican Bank, Banca Serfin, in the City of London, until his retirement.

He has had total involvement with Latin America and things Spanish all his professional life, and still maintains his interest and involvement through a variety of organisations, and travel to the various countries. He speaks Spanish fluently, his wife is from Colombia, and he has five children.

If you wish to come along to the 1997 Annual Dinner please get in touch with the Upper or Lower School Office or any members of the Association Committee. Tickets are 12.00 with a 7.30 p.m. arrival for an 8.00 p.m. start.

Dinner Menu

Carrot & coriander soup
Fruit juice
Liver paté & melba toast
Roast Lincolnshire Turkey and trimmings
roast potatoes
new potatoes
baton carrots
broccoli spears
Sticky toffee pudding and cream
Fresh fruit salad
Banoffee pie & cream
Cheese & biscuits
Coffee & mints

Tickets available from Upper and Lower School - Jackets please

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