John (Jake) Ashurst at 98 years - Head Master 1964 to 1971
Photo posted 16 July 2021

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Teachers 1944 to 1950

A compilation, by Doug Clews, of photos supplied by others, of Teachers from this era.

Dr. P.T. Freeman - Headmaster (Photo 1946)

Mr. C.J. Cozens - 2nd. Master

Mr. Hawkins

Mr. Tanner

Mr. Cass

Mr. Renton

Mr. Sykes

Mr. Gladwell

Mr. Ferguson

Mr. Priestland

Mr. Phillimore

Mr. Simpson

Mr. Yates

Mr. Hammond

Mr. Jones

Mr. Pierce

Mr. Cooksey

Mr. Laing

Mr. Northeast

Mr. St.John

Mr. Watts

Mr. Woodhouse

Mr. Smith

Mr. Cox

There are several Masters and Mistresses missing from the available photos of this era. I list them below, as I remember, and apologise for any errors or omissions. Corrections or additions are welcome, and can be added by way of the 'Comments' facility.

Mr. Lowman - Mr. Laverty - Mr. Fogwell - Mr. Woodley - Mr. Barwell
Miss. Guy - Miss. Kay - Miss. Bright - Miss. Wright - Miss. Pugh

Doug Clews - 18th. December 2012


Masters 1954
kindly supplied by John Piper

Dr. P.T. (Percy Tom) (Doc) Freeman - Headmaster

Mr. (Harry) Hawkins
Mr. C. J. (Christopher John) (Cozy) Cozens - 2nd. Master
Mr. L.W.R. (Ray) (Pongo) Cox

Mr. E. (Eric) (Major) (Hettie) Hammond
Mr. F.E. (Ernie) Gladwell
Mr. J.L. (Jack) Northeast
Mr. Perkins

Mr. L. (Larry) (Pa) (Pappa) Watts
Mr. (Sam) (Stinker) Simpson
Mr. J.L. (Sandy) S.John

Mr. (Bill) (Umph) Sykes
Mr. I.G. (Boggers) (Bogbrush) Smith
Mr. A. (Alan) (Randy) Barron-Renton
Mr. (Purdie) Cooksey
Mr. R. (Ron) (Biffer) Smith
Mr. G.G. (George) (Tom) Pierce
Mr. (Oink) Griffin
Mr. C.A.N. (Cany) (Sniffer) Yates

Mr. P. (Paul) (Why-not) Woodhouse
Mr. S. (Steve) (Chalky) White

Mr. E.O. (EO) Jones
Mr. (Phil) Phillimore

Mr. (Tweedy) Harris
Mr. (Larry) Ward

Mr. J.K. (Joe) (Klanger) Laing
Mr. (Ted) Tavener

Mr. (Oofy) Priestland


scotty1500 wrote on Mar 15, '09
A picture is worth a 1000 words, and here we have also a 1000 individual memories. Thank you dear colleagues

jameswishart wrote on Mar 15, '09
terrific post Doug, thanks

deeceeau wrote on Mar 15, '09
Hi Scotty ... How are things in Brissie ?
Reading some past comments, it is interesting to note that some of the memories of each master appear to be common to all students, but many students obseved or felt things that others perhaps didn't ... I suppose it depended on whether you sat at the font or the back of the class maybe !!!
Doug from WOZ

lisettecjoy wrote on Mar 15, '09
My Grandad before his hair went white! What a nice surprise to get in an email!

peteline wrote on Mar 16, '09
What a great photo journey down memory lane. It is a testament to their longevity and commitment that even though these are 1954 dated photos, when I attended Peter Symonds 1967 – 1972, 15/28 of this group were still teaching. These included the following masters who I had classes with:-

“Pa” Watts (History) – “on the bloomin’ fiddle again”, a real down to earth man.

“Pongo” Cox (Biology) – “for you laddie” – could have an occasional mean streak in him (forcing buys to sit on the leg of an upturned lab stool or making them eat chalk), always got on well with him and used to buy rare stamps at his house.

“Tom” Pierce (English) – great storyteller, emotional man at times.

“Oink” Griffin (French) – “come along now, we have a lot of work to do today” – quite a high strung man.

“Chalky” White (Math) – great math teacher for me, with those dexterous fingers.

“Tweedy” Harris (6th form – Pure Math) – monotone voice, took a lot of stick from his students.

Ted “Crow” Taverner (Geography) – “told you before” – very good teacher, inspired my interest in Geography, that I probably should have taken at “A” level, along with History and Economics (Peter May – always had most interesting discussions with him). Instead after “O” levels, I yielded to peer pressure and took Chemistry, Biology, and Pure Math with Statistics at “A” level, none of which proved to be my true calling, or really held my academic interest.

Also there during my time, Mr. Cooksey, the deputy head with the slicked back hair, who never taught me, but was always lurking outside class windows to drag out and reprimand boys with what he considered to be long hair violations.

kernow001 wrote on Mar 16, '09
Great Memories. Good exercise for the brain is to try to think who is not in the gallery. I was at the school in 1957 so Doc Freeman had already been followed by Jock Shields but other names come to mind:
Fergie Ferguson (Chemistry), Cosher Bray (maths and PE), Ollie (I dont think it was Ossie!) Osbourne (carpentry). I still have a five inch long tapered piece of wood which was supposed to be a spade scraper. I told my children it started out as a dining room table but every time I made a mistake I had to plane out the error and so it ended up being just five inches long.

Spider Webb (Latin) joined early in my time and taught me how to win at Trivial Pursuits as his end of term quiz games were great fun.

deeceeau wrote on Mar 16, '09
Hi Peter 'P' ...
Well, 'Fergie' was indeed at the School in my era ('44 - '50) and, in those days, taught only General Science as far as I can remember ... he was an excellent, well liked and well respected Master, remembered by quite a few !!! ... there are several Masters from my era missing from the Gallery, but, alas, I fear there is little chance of tracking down any photos of them, mainly because so few people had cameras in those days and even if you did, film was virtually un-obtainable and Panoramic School Photos had not been heard of ... such a shame !!!

dedennis wrote on Oct 27, '09
Further to Peteline's comments :- .... not forgetting Mr. I.G. Smith French teacher and renowned chess and bridge player. If only I had attended his bridge lessons (sigh)

scotty1500 wrote on Aug 27, '11, edited on Aug 27, '11
After leaving School in 1954 I found my way to New Scotland Yard on the Embankment in London and as a lunchtime diversion would stroll towards Charing Cross before returning to work, except for the day I stopped in at the park where artists were displaying their work and you can imagine my surprise at seeing a collection of work signed JLN, naturally I stopped and admired what was on show when a voice rang out 'What are you doing here young Scott'' Startled I managed to have a conversation and later sitting in my office could not wonder what I had done to be remembered as my Artwork left a lot to be desired. After National Service I returned briefly to the Yard but never saw him displaying again. Remembered with affection! John Scott 1948-53.

scotty1500 wrote on Aug 27, '11
He taught me German but far more than that he developed in me a desire to travel and is undoubtedly the reason I finished up in Australia. Thank you Ernie for trips to The Rhineland, Lake Lucerne and Italy. John Scott 1948-53.

deeceeau wrote on Aug 27, '11
That would have been a surprise indeed, John, but what a lovely one ... my thanks will forever go to JLN for teaching me how to draw and my memories are of a great and patient teacher, as well as being a very nice man !

scotty1500 wrote on Aug 29, '11, edited on Aug 29, '11
Tom Pierce renowned in my world for a visit one weekend (rode my bike from Eastleigh) to St Cross sports field to watch him play but most of all our weekly gardening foray to the 'plots' just past the Fives courts, and I wonder if that is what has speared my interest in growing for food


Some Masters 1957
Unknown contributor

Mr. (Cyril) Stapleton
No. 1
Mr. (Fergie) Ferguson
No. 4


Teachers '58
Kindly supplied by John Piper

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