Monday, 6 September 2010

Britain is a country where old men remember their school days with a distinct absence of affection

I spent 2 unhappy years in a classroom like this with 42 other boys between when I was 9 and 11. I was picked on so much by 'Mr O'Brian', that I didn't want to go to school and when my mother went to see the Headmaster about this, the kind man moved me from top class A to bottom class C. In that class the boys really looked after me, but managed to get me the cane twice. There was something obscene about a grown man whacking a little boy 3 times on the palm of his hand to hurt him and make him cry.

When I watched 'Grumpy Old Schooldays' on T.V. last night, some of it made me laugh out loud at those parts which made me recall my own school days in those London state schools in Deptford, Charlton and Eltham between 1952 and 1965. Some of it made me remember those unhappy days.

Having said that, I particularly liked the old film footage. So much of it coincided with and confirmed my own memories of those days of 50 years ago.

And 2 wonderful scenes from the film 'Kes' :

Mr Gryce gives the cane :

and 'The football match' :

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