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"The Barbican"

No. 12 - October 1938

Loaned by Joe Warr - Edited by Maurice Hobden

The Original Barbican cover THIS issue of the Barbican appeared only five months after the previous number and it is heavily weighted with literary items from the boys, both prose and verse, to fill the space. Most of that has been omitted from this account.

The amount of news about the school or the real world of pre-war Europe and Great Britain is very little apart from "To Ruthenia" by an old-boy who was at Cambridge at the time and who died later in the war.

The school was developing but to those who knew it in its prime, in the late forties and fifties, the level of scholastic achievement seems decidedly modest. One is also struck by the apparent low expectations of most of the pupils. Dull clerical jobs in local government were seen as the opening into a safe if uninspiring career. Was this the fault of the School or symptomatic of the expectations of parents who had recently lived through the Depression ?

Extracts from the Barbican



The Magazine Of
The Lewes County School
For Boys

October 1938


This term the response to the appeal for contributions has been very satisfactory. Not only has there been quantity, but also quality which has made selection for the prizes offered by the Headmaster extremely difficult. We congratulate Jarrett, Holmes, F. Holton and B. Thomas on their success in this competition. If the response were always as good, the editorial brow would long remain free from the furrows of care and anxiety (Yes, Anstruthers, you heard !).

As usual, we have the pleasant task of commenting on the success of the School fete, all the more notable this year in view of the malicious activities of Jupiter Pluvius.

The Cricket XI met with moderate success, considering the lack of old talent. Inconsistency marred a record which, at one time, promised to be exceptionally good.

We are sorry to have to say good-bye to Mr. Locke who left at the end of the Summer Term to take up a post as VIth Form Modern Language Master at Swansea Grammar School. We wish him the very best of luck in his new position.

Finally, to bring this babbling to an end, we extend hearty congratulations to Ketchell on his well-deserved success in the Executive Examination last April.


School Captain : B. J. Ketchell.

School Prefects :
Lewes : B. J. Ketchell (capt.), A. Evans, J. Cull.
Martlets : D. Thomas (capt.).
Seahaven : Hart (capt.), Schmid.
Uckfield : J. Holton (capt.), J. Henderson, S. Henderson.

Cricket Captain : S. G. Henderson
Vice-Captain : A. G. Evans.
Secretary : B. J. Ketchell.
Treasurer : D. Thomas.
Prefect Librarian : J. Henderson.

Magazine Committee :
B. Ketchell, R. Cooper, P. Ridley, D. Thomas, Jarrett, Blythe, Moss.

Editor : A. G. Evans.


House Masters : Messrs. Hoggins and Smith.
House Captain : B. J. Ketchell.
House Prefects : A. G. Evans and J. Cull.

The good performance of Lewes House during the Rugger season seems to have been a mere flash in the pan. In the Cross-Country Race the entry was very poor, and we finished last, largely because boys were too lazy to train or to enter for the race. The House 1st XI did well to win all its matches, but the 2nd and 3rd XI's between them were unable to win a single point. In the competition for the Work Shield our average mark was 6.823 out of a possible 18 ; once again our quota of boys obtaining a minus quantity of marks every fortnight prevented us from improving our standard. A few individuals put up a very good show in the Athletic Sports, but the average standard throughout the whole House was not as high as it ought to be, taking into consideration the fact that Lewes boys have the best opportunity for training. The one thing on which we can really congratulate ourselves is our retention of the Swimming Cup in spite of the fact that we have lost several of our best swimmers. Even so, it is ominous that we have only three juniors able to swim one length of the School swimming bath. In fact, the general low standard of our juniors in almost every sphere of activities, does not augur well for the future.
B. J. K.

House Masters : Messrs. Auld, O'Brien, and Tayler
House Captain : D. J. Thomas.

Despite our loss, during the Christmas and Easter terms, of such stalwarts as Knight, Batten, and Roberts, we have nevertheless managed to maintain our sporting tradition by coming a close second to Seahaven in the Games Shield and an equally close second to Uckfield in the Athletic Cup Competition. In the latter, we have to blame our lack of beefy seniors in the throwing events for our failure in securing first place ; in the running events we had things practically all our own way, D. Thomas, Hancock, Braidwood, and B. Thomas being outstanding. V. Hall also deserves special commendation for a very gallant effort in the Mile, and in the Colts and Juniors Rich, Miller, Jerrard and Hoad showed considerable promise. As we shall all be here next year our outlook is definitely cheerful.

We did not do so well at Cricket, the ban on School players handicapping us more than usual. Nevertheless, the Junior elevens should develop well.

As usual, we could not gain a good position in the Swimming competition, though the brothers Palethorpe merit special praise for their exceptional performances.

By far the most notable feature of our sporting activities this term has been the infectious spirit of keenness displayed by the House. This is most encouraging and we now have boys who, far from endeavouring to avoid playing in House teams, come and ask if they might play. This is more like it ! Let us show the other Houses the way in this respect.

House Masters : Messrs. Euston, Pett, and Gosling.
House Prefect : A. T. J. Schmid.

This season the Seahaven 1st XI cricket team showed a deplorable lack of initiative. The first match, against Lewes, saw Seahaven in very bad form indeed, and it ended in a complete victory for Lewes. The match against Uckfield had the same result, and it was only against Martlets that we had a win. The 2nds and 3rds, however, made up for the poor displays of the Senior House team by winning all their matches.

On Friday, 22nd July, the Swimming Sports took place and Seahaven's prestige was nobly upheld, and the House finished second. The junior members of the House were mainly responsible for this position, the majority of the entrants being from the lower forms. A special word of praise is due to Upton, IIa, who scored 18 out of a possible 20 points for events in which he entered.

The following Monday, 25th July, the annual Athletic Sports occupied our attention, and due mostly to the lack of entrants for the open events and insuffient training beforehand, the hope of Seahaven attaining any position in the events was not very strong. Congratulations to Howard who won the Javelin by really marvellous throwing.

A successful Rugger and Junior Soccer season amply made up for a not-so-successful summer term, however, with the result that the Games Shield goes to Seahaven.

Finally to end on a really cheerful note, let me congratulate the whole of Seahaven for the great rally as regards work. This term has been the best ever for us in that direction and as a result we can claim the Work Shield for the first time.

Taken as a whole this term has proved very successful for the House, but this is no excuse for a general slow-up either in games or work. Keep up the pace, Seahaven !
A. T. J. Schmid.

House Masters : Messrs. Jarvis and Bowman.
House Captain : J. A. Holton.
House Prefects : J. Henderson and S. G. Henderson.

Uckfield may look back on a fairly successful year although there were several ups and downs. As usual we won the Cross-Country by a comfortable margin. Our cricket was not as good as it might have been, but nevertheless we managed to get eight points.

We were also successful in the Athletics, beating Martlets by 52 points after a very close contest. Our swimming has improved for though we still came bottom we were not hopelessly outclassed.

Unfortunately we have at last lost the Work Shield which we have held ever since it was first competed for in 1933. Let us hope that in the coming year we can regain the Work Shield and also retain the trophies which we already hold.
S. C. H.


Only three of last year's colours were available for the team. When this is considered the record may be regarded as a fair one. From the outset it was thought that the batting would be weak but it was hoped that the bowling would be stronger than usual.

Both our fears and expectations were fully realised in the opening matches. With the exception of one unexpected success at Bexhill with a score of 117 for 1 wicket, the batting seldom gave the bowlers a chance. The departure of Hart towards the end of the term seriously weakened the bowling, and the last two matches were lost to make a total of nine played, four won, and five lost. The batting honours were very definitely gained by Blythe with useful scores on occasion by Henderson, Holton, and Evans. Henderson, Blythe, and Hart shared most of the bowling success with some valuable assistance from Thomas. Strachan kept wicket in very efficient fashion and the fielding generally was well above the average.


We have just completed our most successful Scouting year; two camps have been held and a great deal of work done towards badges and tests. At present there are 12 Second Class Scouts and altogether about 50 proficiency badges have been won by the members of the Troop. We hope to have at least one First Class Scout and King's Scout among our number soon.

In the Ambulance Competition held in May the two School teams took first and second places, and since then we have entered for the Camping, Cooking, and Swimming Competitions, but the results of these will not be known until after the end of September.

A camp at Nutley during the Whitsun week-end was a great success ; the site was excellent, the weather very kind indeed and, with an excellent spirit prevailing, the 20 Scouts who went had a thoroughly enjoyable time. Later in the Summer term a week-end camp was held at Southease by the kind permission of Mr. Wilson, father of one of the Scouts. The Camping Examiner called and expressed approval of several features of the camp, especially the flagstaff made from staves. We were very much indebted to Mr. Page and Mr. Locke who camped with us so that we should be well cared for in the absence of the S.M. who had to return to Lewes each night.

We played a repetition of last year's cricket match against the 2nd Lewes though losing by rather less this time.

Since our last report four recruits have joined and our numbers have remained at about 30, as some of our Fifth Form members found their time too fully occupied by their work.

We understand that our new master, Mr. Thompson, may be lending us a hand, and we should like to assure him of a real welcome and, we think, a good deal of fun, if he decides to do so.



A party of 35 from Lewes County School for Boys have just returned from a fortnight's enjoyable camping expedition in Normandy. The spot chosen this year was Thury-Harcourt, a little town on the River Orne, at the northern boundary of the beautiful district known as "La Suisse Normande."

Just north of Thury-Harcourt the Orne makes an almost complete circle in a sort of basin in the hills. This is known as "La Boucle de l'Orne," and it was on the outer edge of this "Buckle," in a sheltered meadow looking across the river to a lovely prospect of wooded hills, that we had our camp site.

It was a perfect spot for a camp, and the bathing was the best we have had. To our surprise we had some difficulty in hiring boats, but eventually we managed to raisc two (of the safe, barge-like variety), and with these and our daily bathes we got a tremendous amount of fun out of the river.

Another great boon was the little stream which ran beside our field into the river. This gave us safe and easy washing, and -- in a small tunnel under the lane that skirted the camp -- a natural refrigerator where milk would keep in perfect condition for 24 hours in the hottest weather.

As always in our camps abroad, we were blessed with perfect weather, the first week being almost too hot and producing the usual crop of sunburnt backs and arms.

We made several interesting expeditions, spending days at Bayeux, Clecy, Caen, and another exploring the country round Thury-Harcourt, while on our journey home we managed to fit in four hours at Rouen.

At Bayeux we saw the famous tapestry and had a brief glimpse of the Cathedral, but the main memory of this day (for all except the most historically-minded) was the excellent and lengthy meal served to us at the Hotel de Luxembourg. French meals are always rather exciting, especially to the uninitiated, and the delightful uncertainty as to what amazing dish was coming next held a thrill all its own.

An enjoyable day was spent at Caen, where we visited some of the famous churches, looked at the docks, and got rid of a good deal of our spare cash. Here again the " dejeuner " was a great feature of the day.

We had a glorious open-air day at Clecy, which lies at the centre of the loveliest part of " La Suisse Normande." In the morning we explored the heights above the river Le Pain de Sucre, Les Rochers des Parcs, etc., then had a short bathe before our picnic lunch. We managed to get six large boats for the afternoon, and the whole party enjoyed themselves on the river until it was time to return to the Hotellerie du Moulin, where we found a very good tea awaiting us. In the evening we strolled about the pretty village until our train home to a late supper and welcome bed.

As usual, we made many friends in the town, and the evening round of the shops was a regular feature of the day. This year's " Guardian Angel " was Monsieur Couillard, the acting Mayor of Thury-Harcourt ; he was kindness itself and did everything possible both before and during our stay to make the camp a success.

We broke our homeward journey for some hours at Rouen; where we visited the Cathedral and other places of interest, and also had a final French meal before leaving to catch the midnight boat at Dieppe. We had a perfect crossing, and arrived at Lewes at 7 a.m., tired by triumphant, and well content with our visit to our very good neighbours across the water.
H. F. T.


Our Annual Fete was held this year on 28th May. We awoke to the patter of rain and so it continued, with very brief intervals, all day. Telephone enquiries came through asking whether the function was postponed. Our hearts sank and we prepared ourselves for our first " flop."

Two o'clock, and at the top of the lane leading to the School a figure appeared. Yes ! He was really coming to the fete. His courage made our hearts glow. Here was our audience. Should we conduct him, sole competitor, round all the side-shows, give him all the prizes, and send him home laden with trophies ranging from a safety-razor to a live pig ?

No ! Not yet ! News, breathless news ! Other people were reported to be coming in our direction. Twos, threes, tens, fifties, hundreds, the School was packed. As it was too wet to go outside, they had to remain indoors. They could not escape importunate money extractors -- of course they did not wish to -- and coin in our coffers began to clink merrily. Coconut Shies, Guinea-pig Derby, Spinning Jenny, all the old amusements, not forgetting the live pig, received their accustomed patronage.

In an interval of less wet weather, the Lewes and Seaford Rugby Football Clubs gallantly disported themselves at that leisurely game of Daily Mail Push Ball. A " monstrous army of women " (we should call them ministering angels) made tea, cut sandwiches, smiled at everyone, and sent them away replete. Vocal exercises drew crowds to the gymnasium. The pace increased as evening drew on. The hall was packed with dancers. In the serener air of the biology lab. was whispered the word whist ! And at midnight, as exhausted merry-makers and workers crept away into the dark unknown (still raining) the pale figure of the business manager, seated on the hall floor, was reported to be pouring bags of coppers through his hair and fingers.
S. H. M.

[Note: The Daily Mail Push Ball was a stunt dreamt up by the Daily Mail newspaper which was very active in the pre-war "newspaper circulation wars" which reached their peak in the holiday season especially at the seaside (most people took holidays on English beaches in those far-off days). The Push Ball, usually with the word "Daily Mail" plastered over it, was really a large but heavy inflatable balloon about twelve feet in diameter which took a flattened shape about nine feet high. The two teams formed a scrum on opposite sides and attempted to push it over their opponents base line. Mostly it was played on the seaside beaches with prizes handed out by representatives of the newspaper -- always providing that each of the team could produce their copy of the "Daily Mail"! The balls could be bought for a modest sum at sports and toy shops -- complete with the name of the newspaper, of course -- and games were played at functions such as village fetes and the like. The great attraction was the absurd spectacle that the game presented with this floppy ball veering this way and that and occasionally being lift up over the teams heads with a consequent confusion that had spectators in fits of laughter.]


We are very indebted to the following for subscriptions to this fund since our last issue : R. K. Berry, A. Rogers (5th donation), Meux, and Calwell, all present pupils ; G. Taylor, B. Chanman, J. Chaplin, and K. Lawrence, for leaving gifts ; B. O. B. Turner, who celebrated his success in a Bank Examination by sending a donation ; two boys in the Glyndebourne Opera, who gave a third of their first salary payment to the fund ; IIb, who raffled an unclaimed School tie and hand~d over the proceeds, 9d. ; and to Oliver Frank, Esq:, who marked his appreciation of the services of boys he has engaged from the School by sending a donation. The proceeds of our last fete, £80, have also been added.

Floreat Lewesia


My first introduction to Czechoslovakia was the frontier town of Badenbach in the magnificent Elbe valley. It was evening and the sun had turned the whole landscape a warm mellow gold. After the usual customs formalities my friend and I cycled away up the valley. The road, though not too good, faded into insignificance beside the grandeur of the scenery, rivalling that in the Rhine Gorge.

We went on, past Aussig, had our supper by the roadside, and slept out under the moon in a valley-side field. We were tired, having travelled for two days, first across the North Sea from Hull to Hamburg, and thence to the Czech frontier by rail. But at 2 o'clock next morning it began, to rain. We got up about an hour later and cycled on, taking our food in snatches during dry periods. By midday we were in Prague, where it started to rain heavily.

From the Czech capital we went, via Clmutz, to the Carpathian foothills and Valley of the Vah. Here in Slovakia and up the beautiful Vah valley we met with the most wonderful hospitality. Cycling over the most atrocious roads, which turned to heavy mud when it rained, we reached the High Tatra, the only " Alpine " type of mountains between the Alps and Caucasus. Our route now followed the lower ground to the east through German Levoca to Presov, where we saw a military parade and the local pork butcher put us up in his loft for the night.

Next day, being Sunday all, the people blossomed forth in their beautiful and intricate " national " costumes. That night we ran up into the heart of the Carpathians again and slept high up on a pass in the moonlight.

We soon entered Ruthenia with its Ukrainian peasants and Jewish traders. The country was more difficult, more wooded and less cultivated. Determined to reach the very east of Czechoslovakia, we half pushed and carried our bikes over two passes, using the local footpaths and spending a freezing night in a forest reserve in order to arrive there.

Turning west along the Tisa valley because we found a Rumanian visa too expensive, we only entered Hungary at a second attempt. The dry plain was now upon us ; mile upon mile of dusty roads lined with bright green, acacias. Debrecen to Budapest was spent in a night train -- a ghastly ride. Budapest was dull at 5 a.m., but the night view we had later on was enchanting.

Back we went along the Budapest-Vienna road, past the Danube -- a wonderful sight in the sun -- to Gyor and Bratislava, the latter city once more in Czechoslovakia. On our way to Badenbach we saw signs of military watchfulness and Sudeten enthusiasm. The countryside was extremely lovely and the roads improved considerably ; moreover we now slept in comfort in Czech or Sudeten Youth Hostels.

On our return journey to Hamburg, we stopped over a day in Berlin, but spent a lot of time finding sleeping accommodation.

The whole journey from the port of embarkation -- Hull, to Grimsby on our return was remarkably cheap, totalling in all about £10. Without a doubt this was because of our low food and sleeping costs, made possible in a large manner by the open-handed hospitality we received.
R. W. Barnes (O.L.)


The thud of a ball, the fall of a man,
The cry of " on, on, on ! "
The flash of a red-coloured jersey,
And the game is won.

The crash of a stone on a window,
The fall of splintering glass
The look on the caretaker's visage :
A detention class.

The voice of the Latin master
" Amo, amas, amat,"
The sound of a bell, a sigh of relief,
And, " thank the Lord for that."

The feel of a hand on your shoulder,
The sound of a voice, " Well done !
" A handshake from the master,
And school life's done.

G. H. Ford


Since the last issue of the BARBICAN we have received letters from several Old Boys.

N. HANCOCK has been appointed to the War Office at a small branch in Dartmouth Street near St. James's Park. He has also commenced a course for the Customs and Excise Examination.

R. MANTLE is now on a light cruiser in the Home Fleet, the Dunedin, which goes out into the Channel for manoeuvres nearly every day. He has been very successful in his final examination at St. Vincent, coming out top with 87.4 per cent.

Hearty congratulations to the following :
D. POLLARD on completing his long course and gaining a First Class in the passing out examination for Artificer Apprentices, R.N.

W. S. EADE on gaining the Cambridge Diploma in Education.

G. C. HUTTON who has passed London Inter B.Sc.

L. CLEMENTS on his success in the Graduateship Examination of the Institution of Structural Engineers.

R. W. BARNES, our first Old Boy at Cambridge, who has gained a "First" in the Geography Tripos Part I, and has been awarded the College Geography Prize and the "Mr. Lyttleton" Scholarship in Geography.

J. E. RUTHERFORD who has gained a good "Second" in his Mathematical Degree at Oxford and has been accepted for a year's course at the Carnegie Physical Training College, Leeds.

E. C. WYNTER who has been successful in Pass Moderations at Oxford, preparatory to reading for the Honour School of History and has been elected StEWARD of the J.C.R.

D. MARANDE who got a "Distinction" recently in an Engineering Exam., thereby securing a free course at University College, Southampton.

B. O. B. TURNER on successfully negotiating his Bank Exam.

K. MULLINS, our first Old Boy jockey, who in his first year as an apprentice has won several races, and whose riding has been described by The Times as full of promise.

T. WICKENS on passing the first part of his final B.Sc. Engineering.

We had, recently, very welcome visits to the School from BATTEN, now in the Civil Service in London, EADE, POLLARD, BEVAN, BARNETT, RUTHERFORD, C. HILLS, who has left the Mercantile Marine for the Air Force, F. J. BARTLETT, R. BURGESS, also at Whitehall, F. W. COSSTICK, ORCHARD, and WICKENS.

It was pleasant to run into SHOEBRIDGE, who is now Fourth Engineering Officer on the Worthing, when the School camping party crossed to France.

Finally, our sincere sympathies with GIBBONS who, after a most successful twelve months on the games field, and when about to leave his job at Littlehampton to proceed to Cambridge University has been compelled to give up his project through ill-health.

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