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Speech Days.....

An Annual Speech Day was held at the end of June/early July each year. This was the day when parents were proud (or not!) of their daughter(s) achievements, whereas the pupils were excited at the summer holidays which were imminent! Speech Days were also preceeded by a Commemoration Service in Bakewell Parish Church.

1935 circa – Orations
The image to the left is a list of those delivering speeches at Prizegiving in the Whitworth Institute (supplied by Stella Allen and Mary Goodman). Stella thinks this was in 1935. As can be seen Stella herself did the French one and says that Mary should have done it but she refused, and so, Stella was chosen as second best!

It is also interesting to note that Penelope Fletcher did the English oration. Penelope married and became Penelope Mortimer, an author. Her book, About Time 1818 – 1939, includes a chapter on her time at St Elphin's which did not look favourably upon the school or the staff! However, we hope to include the chapter on the website in due course.

Please click on the left image to see a larger version.

1953-1959 Speech Day
Right: The Duchess of Devonshire presenting a cup to Sallie Hitchen-Gedye who was at St Elphin's from 1947 to 1954 in Powys House. Photo: H. Gill – supplied by Judy Hick-Thompson. Please click on photo for larger version.







1960-1964 Speech Day
The photo (above left), supplied by Christine Tew, was taken sometime between 1960 and 1964 on Speech Day where a marquee was erected at the end of the athletics pitch. Please click on image for larger version

1967 & 1976 Prizegiving
Some of the prize-winners were also presented with a book of their choice. The following books were presented to Gillian Prescott-Haywood and Jo Salsbury-Halliday in their respective years at St Elphin's. The book shown to the right of each certificate was the one chosen by the recipient.

To date, I have managed to track down the following Speech Day and Commemoration Service programmes and am sure you will enjoy perusing through them to see if your name is mentioned anywhere, as well as jogging your memory on long-lost friends. If you have a St Elphin’s Speech Day Programme which is not listed below and would be willing for me to scan it in for this website, please do not hesitate to contact Liz Donlan.

1985 Speech Day
In addition to the 1985 Annual Speech Day programme there was also a list of the girls from Upper VI 1984-1985 who went on to University or to other courses and professional training.

Thanks to Imogen Turner-Hairsine, 1983-1988, for sending in this list for scanning. Please click on the image for a larger version.


Speech Day Programmes:
Please click on the images below to view the whole programme.

1924 1945 1949 1952 1954 1955
1956 1957 1958 1959 1960 1961
St Elphin's School 1968 Speech Day St Elphin's School 1969 Speech Day St Elphin's School Speech Day 1971 St Elphin's School 1972 Speech Day St Elphin's School 1974 Speech Day St Elphin's School 1975 Speech Day


1969 1971 1972 1974 1975
link to 1976 speech day programme St Elphin's School 1985 Speech Day
1976 1985 1992 1995 1996

Thanks go to the following for providing Speech Day Programmes for scanning purposes:
Audley Retirement Village – 1985
Larkins, Elisabeth (nee Ward) – 1954, 1955, 1956, 1957, 1958, 1959, 1960, 1961
Lewis, Catherine (nee Sutton) – 1968, 1969, 1972, 1974, 1975
Miller, Helen (nee Simpson) – 1976
Tew, Christine – 1952, 1992, 1995, 1996
Wallhead, Ruth (nee Parsons) – 1949
Wareham, Caroline – 1945
Winkless, Jennifer (nee Gray) – 1971

Commemoration Service Programmes:

St Elphin's School 1968 Commemoration Service link to Commemoration Service programme 1969 St Elphin's School 1974 Commemoration Service
1968 1969 1974 1977 1995

Thanks go to the following for providing Commemoration Service Programmes for scanning purposes:
Grierson, Beverley – 1969
Lewis, Catherine (nee Sutton) – 1968, 1974
Miller, Helen (nee Simpson) – 1977
Tew, Christine – 1995, 1996

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