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Mr H. Hoggins

Senior Physics Master (1930 - 1969) and Deputy Head

A Cutting from a Local Newspaper (c.1970) --- Courtesy of Michael Short

Distinguished Lewes schoolmaster dies

A DISTINGUISHED teaching career over 40 years in one school ended with the sudden death, on Tuesday, of Horace Hoggins, former deputy head-master of Lewes County Grammar School for Boys, now incorporated in the Priory Comprehensive School.

Mr Hoggins 1948 Mr Hoggins 1966 Mr Hoggins, who was 66, had recently been working as a part-time teacher, and had carried out his duties normally last week. He played golf over the weekend and was taken ill on Monday morning in his home, 26 Gundreda Road. He was moved to the Lewes Victoria Hospital where he died early the following day. A schoolmaster of the finest type, he was held in affectionate esteem by his pupils, past and present, and by his professional colleagues. Thousands of Grammar School old boys, who have benefited by his help and guidance will mourn his passing.

A man of many parts, he entered fully into the life of the school. Apart from teaching physics, he coached the boys in cricket and rugger, acted in school plays, played the violin in the school orchestra, appeared at school concerts and attended camps at home and abroad.

Married in 1941, he leaves a widow and two sons. The elder, Christopher, an old Lewes Grammar School boy, and an engineering graduate of Nottingham University, is working in Rhodesia; the younger, Geoffrey, is in the sixth form at Lewes Priory School.

Mr Hoggins, 1932 Mr Hoggins was educated at Rivington and Blackrod Grammar School, Horwich, Lancashire, and at Manchester University. After teaching at Hammond Grammar School, Swaffham, for three years, he came to Lewes in 1930 on the opening of the new Lewes County School for boys (subsequently the Grammar School) as senior science master. Later he became Deputy Headmaster.

During a serious illness of the Headmaster, Mr N. R. J. Bradshaw, Mr Hoggins took over his duties, and in 1967-68 he was appointed Acting Headmaster during a temporary vacancy.

He retired in 1969, but very soon returned to do part-time teaching in the same school, which had meanwhile become part of the Priory Comprehensive School. He was one of the few remaining teachers who had served the school from its inception in 1930. [ Note: In fact he was the only member of staff to have served on the LCGS staff from 1930 to 1969.]

The dedicated service which he gave left him with little time for recreational interests outside the school. A keen cricketer, he played in the Lancashire League in his youth -- he became a valued member of the Lewes Priory Cricket Club and of the Southdown Lawn Tennis Club. He was also for many years a regular playing member of Lewes Golf Club.

A special funeral service was conducted at the School Chapel yesterday (Thursday) by the Rev. M. Loughton (Rector of St. John's Church), followed by cremation at the Downs Crematorium, Brighton.


A tribute to the memory of Mr Hoggins was made by Mr W. M. Gourlay, head of the Upper School, Lewes Priory School, who said:

"Mr Hoggins had a unique record. He was among that small band of pioneers who assembled on the school site on a day in September, 1930 -- a group which consisted of five teachers, one headmaster and 120 boys, who were founder-members of the old County Grammar School for Boys."

"Mr Hoggins was the only member of the party who served the school from its first day until it ceased to exist as a separate body in July 1969, when it became part of the Priory School. In those 39 years as senior physics master, deputy head and twice acting-head, he helped the school to grow from a small county grammar school to a school that has made a famous name in British education."

"Every old boy of the school knew Mr Hoggins and a great number have reason to be grateful to him for his advice and his wise counsel as well as for his knowledge of physics. He knew every man who had served on the staff of the County Grammar School."

"Mr Hoggins had all the qualities of a great schoolmaster -- a firm but kindly discipline, a wealth of scholarship, a shrewdness of judgement and a wisdom in decisions."

A Cutting from a Local Newspaper (c.1970) --- Courtesy of Michael Short

Last Tributes to Lewes schoolmaster

A CROWDED congregation assembled on Thursday last week in the unique School Chapel which stands beside the building which formerly housed Lewes County Grammar School for Boys, to pay last tributes to a master who had taught at the school for nearly 40 years. Mr Horace Hoggins, of 26 Gundreda Road Lewes, formerly Deputy Headmaster of the school died suddenly last week, at the age of 66.

Pupils, old boys, headmasters and teachers with many others attended the funeral service conducted by the Rev. Michael Loughton (Rector af St. Johns Church). The school choir occupied the gallery and led by Mr Brian Richards (organist and choirmaster) sang appropriate hymns. Mr D. W. Usherwood, headmaster of Priory School, Lewes -- in which the Grammar School is now incorporated -- read the lesson. An appreciation, by Mr W. M. Gourlay, head of the Upper School, followed.

After expressing his personal sorrow at the loss of a friend, Mr Gourlay said,

"It is just over a year ago on the occasion of his retirement from full-time service that I passed on to Mr Hoggins our good wishes and thanks for all that he had done for us and for the school. It came as a great surprise to him then to realise the esteem that the old boys had for him, for he received numerous letters, some from the four corners of the earth "

After recounting the details of his long and distinguished career at the school, and paying tribute to his qualities as a schootmaster, Mr Gourlay added,

"He had, too, all the qualities of a man, and many of us have lost a dear personal friend. We mourn his passing. He will not be forgotten"


Thse family mourners were Mrs Dorothy Hoggins (widow), Mr and Mrs Christopher Hoggins (son and daughter-in-law), and Mr Geoffrey Hoggins (son). The elder son, Mr Christopher Hoggins, and his wife had flown from their Rhodesian home to attend the service less than three days after hearing the sad news.

Among the mourners was Mr N. R. J. Bradshaw, the first headmaster of the Grammar School who raised the fund to build the School Chapel, the first and only one of its kind in the country. He looked back over 30 years association with his former Deputy.

Also there was Mr E. C. C. Wynter, headmaster of Haywards Heath County Grammar Schooi who joined Lewes County Grammar School in 1930, when it was known as the County School. He was one of the earliest pupils to win a scholarship which took him to Oxford University, where he became a Rugby Blue. He captained the Sussex and Blackheath fifteens and played for the Barbarians.

Among present Upper School teachers of the Priory School were several senior staff members of the old County Grammar School for Girls. Former Grammar School for Boys masters among the mourners, most of them now retired, included Mr W. Euston, Mr Hugh Tayler, Mr P. Barton, Mr D. J. Jarvis and Mr P. Toy. Other mourners included Mr Rendell Jones (Chief Education Officer) accompanied by his wife, Lionel Green (Deputy Education Officer) and several school governers.

Old Grammar School boys included Mr J. F. Cull (chairman, Old Lewesians Association), Mr. K. W. F. Geering (secretary), Mr I. C. A. Wycherley, Mr G. L. Baird, Mr P. Noel, Messrs R. and D. Brickell, Mr R. Fuller, Mr R. Rees and Mr F. Peters. About 30 Priory Upper School pupils also attended the service.

A party of 16 close friends attended the committal service at the Downs Crematorium, Brighton.