|"WHS is a borstal" ..... - Chris Snuggs
The above is quoted as having been said by a local farmer - possibly when one of his haystacks was accidentally sent on fire by a clandestine WHS smoker! This may be apocryphal*, or something said in jest, but even so the record needs to be put straight!
- WHS was obviously NOT a borstal, but initially a grammar school. Many of the boys who went there were or became academic, sporting or artistic stars - and some were all three while still at school!
- WHS therefore added a touch of class to the village of Woolverstone - or rather hamlet - as it has been described.
- We also provided a magnificent venue for the Woolverstone Park Cricket CLub
- "Boys will be boys" - and the boys enjoyed a fair amount of freedom one way or the other, particularly in roaming outside the official confines of the school. No doubt there was a fair amount of larking about one way or another, BUT ....
- To my knowledge, incidents of vandalism, bothering farmers' animals, loud and loutish behaviour and so on which might have upset the locals were in my experience non-existent. I did hear of some scrumping once, but well below a level which would have really upset anyone.
And the thing one might overlook is that WHS brought a fair number of jobs to the local community in the way of cleaners, cooks, gardeners and so on. I do not have any official statistics about this, but my assumption is that the number of local employees was significant.
Which brings us to the question: "What DID the locals think about the school?" I wonder if older locals missed the ancien regime of the Berners? I confess to being unable to quote anyone on this and fear to make assumptions.
Perhaps others are able to do so?
* According to Marcus Redburn, it WAS said by a farmer when one of his haystacks was acidentally set on fire by a clandestine WHS smoker!