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General Photos.....

Richmal Crompton Day – 15th November, 1990

Born, 15th November, 1890, Richmal Crompton is most famous for her 'Just William' stories. However, she was also a Pupil from 1902 - 1909, a Pupil Teacher from 1909-11 and a Teacher of Classics 1914-17 - all at St Elphin's School! On 15th November, 1990 St Elphin's School celebrated the Centenary of Richmal's birth, which was reported in all the daily newspapers from The Times to The Sun, and even on national television, ITV and BBC!

The Richmal Crompton Day was the brainchild of Ann Hodgson and was organised with the help of a committee. Ann says that "Many members of Richmal Crompton’s family attended the event, along with two of Richmal’s biographers, representatives from MacMillan Publishers and ‘The William Society’. Everyone wore Edwardian dress, even the visiting postman and guests and form presidents arrived in style, in carriages provided by The Red House Carriage Museum, run by a former pupil, and were greeted by the Headmaster, Peter Pollard, staff, cooks, maids, gardeners and pupils at the front door of the school. Richmal Ashbee, her niece, planted a maple tree and a celebration service was held with her favourite hymns.

Many pupils entered a William/Violet look-alike and William story competitions. Ann Hodgson had persuaded the Bethnal Green Museum of Childhood to donate a life-size statue of William to the school and an exhibition, which filled Long Corridor.

We had a wonderful lunch based on school menus from early years. A Latin lesson, gym display and William plays followed, then a ‘William tea’, with all his favourite foods, after which each member of the school was also given a ‘gobstopper ‘ and a lovely pot of ‘William’s Delight’, boiled sweets provided by Thornton’s.

It was certainly an occasion to be remembered.

The following photographs, taken by Miss H J Cawood, are published by kind permission of The photos were purchased with the library contents after the school closure and were donated to the library.

Below: Front Stairs

Below: Front Stairs (Note: Portrait of 'Maud' - Miss Robinson, Head Mistress 1958 - 1975 - on the left-hand wall)

Below: LtoR: Miss Pamela Simpson (Biology), Miss Helen Caywood (Art), Mr David Farrer (Physics), ? Mrs Taylor, Mrs Gill Leech (English and Art)

Below: Miss Helen Cawood (Art Teacher)

Below: Front Drive - outside the main entrance

Below: LtoR: Colonel Hobbs, Keith (Workman), Real Postman!, Margaret Walker (School Secretary), ? , Nicky Heathcote

Below: Miss Carmichael (P. E. Teacher) dressed as Just William!

Below: LtoR: ? , Mrs Patricia Hooton (PE)

Below: LtoR: Mrs Wass (Maths), Mrs Johnson (Music), Mrs Ainscough (Maths & IT and Kennedy House Mistress), Mrs Taylor (Geography)

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