Some memories of 3S (1963)

Peter Verity sent us these memories

Stream of consciousness by Peter Verity  

 Mr Chater: I'm sure I remember him drinking sulphuric acid in class, and advising us not to follow his example. "Poor old Joe is Joe no more, for what he thought was H2O was H2SO4"  

Mr (Crutch) Chater was our form teacher in 3S, in the General Science Lab. The lab benches had wooden covers over the sinks, and on the underside of one of these covers we found scrawled words to the effect of "F**k Off Chater". Our excitement drew the good man's attention, and he came to investigate, to the embarrassment of all.  

 Quartermaster's stores: on the coach back from a trip to Stratford - "There was Howard, Howard, being overpowered in the stores". He was not amused, as he explained to us the next day in his office.  

 The lift (for use by teachers only): finding the inner of a roll of Sellotape, I wondered what would happen if something that size got caught in the runner of the lift door. Trained to put everything to scientific test, I discovered that it put the lift out of action for a couple of hours, forcing all the teachers to use the stairs at period end. Gunner was furious, but coward that I am, I never admitted it, and I think it resulted in a class detention (sorry chaps).   

The stairs (for use by pupils): getting from top to bottom of the tower in as few steps as possible. I think it was 16 (2 per flight, 4 per floor).

 Pirates of Penzance (1966?): during the interval, the cast of policemen went out to direct the traffic in Trinity Road. After the show, some of the cast took random bikes from the racks to go to the off-licence. Someone had taken mine, so I did likewise and picked a bike at random; unfortunately, it belonged to a teacher (Nobby Clarke I think). Why was it always me that got caught out?  

 Bikes: the usual mode of transport for pupils (and some teachers). Periodically, the whole form trooped out to the bike sheds for bike inspection, and woe betide if your brakes were dodgy or you had loose spokes. Once you reached the 6th form, you could bring scooters or mopeds - that is unless you were banned, in which case you still brought them but parked in Balmoral Rd. The most common reason for being banned was failure to wear a crash helmet (not a legal requirement at the time).   

John Bertalot: taught music, and left in 1962 (end of my 1st year).  He first lit the spark in me of a love of music, which I still have. Since leaving Trinity, he went to America and inspired a generation of young church musicians, and has written several books on the subject. He is now retired and back in the UK, and I bumped into him recently. He has a website  

 David (Dohey) Baker: taught music from 1962. Dohey was just out of college, and close enough in age to be almost "one of us" - even to the extent of getting the bumps on his birthday. Thanks to Dohey, and all the other teachers who got me through my A-levels, and launched me into the brave (unsuspecting) world.  

 Finally, "DD": short for "Double Decomposition" (aka Dirty Dick), which I never understood, or "Double Detention" which I understood well.

Antics in the Library

Photo sent in by Peter Verity
The acrobat is Brian Richardson, and looking on are Mike Edmunds and Rick Campbell
The Tower Revisited  - The website for former Pupils of the Technical High School, Trinity High School & Trinity Grammar School, Northampton