Leslie was a founding and fundamental member of the staff that launched and developed WHS during its first decade. I knew him from 58 to 60, and so cannot speak from personal experience of his earlier years . My belief, however, is that he was a huge pillar of support for John Smitherman as they embarked on their ambitious experiment. Leslie radiated gravitas and was hugely talented in a variety of fields, not least in drama, where he was the guiding light and hand behind many productions. AND of course he was one of the founding Housemasters.

He left WHS in 1963 not long after John Smitherman to take up the Headship of Cheadle Hume School, where he had an equally successful career.

Smitherman, Johnston, Bell, Cobb, Corner, Evans, Halls, Mudd, Warren, Woolford and a year or so later Channon, Goetzee, Hassell-Smith, Josselyn, Palmer, Poole, Richardson, Rowland and Shakeshaft: what luck WHS had to have such a team in its formative years, and Leslie was at the heart of it for a decade.


LESLIE JOHNSTON  - Roger Friend in the November, 1997 WHOBA Newsletter

Leslie Johnston, Housemaster, History Teacher, Deputy Head and Acting Head during his time at Woolverstone from 1951 to 1959, passed away peacefully, aged 82, on Friday 10 October. His younger daughter Meroe Wilson wrote that he had been resident in a nursing home for a year. She said that it was tough on Leslie because he wasn't able to be in his own home with his wife Valerie. However, those that looked after him were extremely compassionate and caring in their work and they did a marvellous job. His older daughter Erica had arrived from California, where she now lives, and with Meroe saw him in the morning. The family are members of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) and they held a small gathering at home on Sunday 19 October when they had a quiet celebration of Leslie's life. Some of you may have seen the notice in the Times.

The house he founded carried his name until the closure of the school. All OWs, colleagues on the teaching staff, support staff and pupils, that knew him will have their own memories, particularly those old Johnstonians who were there during his stewardship. Please send your memories for publication in the next edition of "Janus".