Random Memories and Events
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1965 - The Chocolate Box
1966 - The Singer Roadster
1964 - The Tiger Hunts
1964 - Jilted
1966 - Le Grand Prix de Swainby
1964 - The Umbrella at Brotherswater
1959 - Prize Day
2019 - In a Chepstow Kitchen
1950/60s - School Rules
1962/3 - The Langdale Expeditions
1963 - Alfred "Bloody" Wainwright
1960s - Boys in Newcastle (& Elsewhere!)
1960s - FVP (Frequently Visited Pubs)
18-11-2020 Peter Sharp
11-12-2020 Peter Sharp Funeral Memories
1960s - Grangefield Thespians & Musicians
Here we have a memory from Brian covering the early days of his illustrious musical career and those of others at Grangefield. In addition we have gathered together some programmes from events at both the Boys and Girls schools from around this time.
YEOMEN OF THE GUARD - 1964 - by Brian Humpherson
Fellow Grangefield alumni might be interested to see these old programmes of GGS concerts and productions in the 60s. I’m sure you will recognise and identify with many of the names listed, especially those who have attended our reunions in recent years.
I’ll never forget the occasion when I was asked to stay behind at the end of the school day, and found myself in a classroom with Mr. Tiesing (Trog) and the music teacher Mr. Shute. I was asked to stand in the back corner of the room and sing something unaccompanied. I assumed they wanted to check my vocal range and see whether I could sing in tune. I haven’t a clue what I sang but it certainly wasn’t in our Cyclones repertoire! However, they seemed to be quite pleased with my performance, informing me that my ‘audition’ had landed me the part of Leonard Meryll in the upcoming school G & S production of ‘Yeomen of the Guard’!
My reaction was rather mixed - pleased to have been offered the part, but at the same time feeling a sense of dread at having to perform on stage, probably dressed in some ridiculous costume. A bit of a contrast from fronting the Cyclones at an Eaglecliffe Village Hall dance! Fortunately it was only a small part, so my stage debut was fairly brief, even with a short re-appearance in Act 2. I was more concerned that the opening night would be on my birthday! A member of the orchestra, viola player Austin Melia, said how pleased he was to see someone from one of these new Rhythm Groups taking part in a Gilbert & Sullivan production. His friendly words gave me some encouragement and boosted my confidence.
At college my stage career went from strength to strength. I played the part of half a fairy, when I was cast as Strephon in ‘Iolanthe’. I’m not quite sure what I must have done in the audition to secure the part, but luckily I was only a fairy down to the waist. Unfortunately that would only allow me to squeeze halfway through a keyhole! On another occasion I played the part of Aeneas, in a production of Purcell’s opera ‘Dido and Aeneas’. The libretto included some memorable lyrics and I remember having to sing the line ‘Behold upon my bended spear, a monster’s head lies bleeding’. Rather a contrast to my singing ‘Wop Bop A Loo Bop A Lop Bam Boo’ with the college rock group ‘Sigmund and the Pedagogues’.
Little did I anticipate how much my career would involve me in the production of operas and musicals, working as MD for operatic societies, music theatre groups, as well as youth and school groups. I’ve lost count of the hours spent as a rehearsal pianist before joining other musicians in the orchestra pit for the performances. If ‘Leonard’ was to make another entrance, I doubt he would believe it!
The other programmes relate to events after my own time at GGS, and will no doubt spark memories for members of our group. My sister Kathryn and Nicole both featured in a performance of Haydn’s ‘Creation’ at the Girls’ school, but I’m not sure of the year. In 1965 I attended this concert at the Boys’ school and was taken aback to see such a transformation in the amount of musical activity taking place, following the arrival of a new music teacher. Not a ‘Rhythm Group’ in sight!
The Yeomen of The Guard - March 1964
The Creation - July 1968
Easter Concert - April 1965
The Mutiny at Strangefield - December 1962
The Cyclones Set List
and the first review
(taken from Grangefield School 1963/4 Year Book)
The Production Running Order
Iolanthe - March 1963
The Evening Gazette is impressed with the ‘boys’ chorus’ which sings with GUSTO! This was entirely due to the tireless efforts of ‘Neville’ Shute – music master and director and sometime Latin teacher. Amo, amas, amat ….
Writes Archie Foulds on 14 February 2021!
The cast list below speaks volumes and we charged 3d for the programme! Still fondly remember the G&S of my youth.
1966 - Railway Trespassers
Archie Foulds "comes clean" over his past misdemeanours and resulting summons to the magistrates court
1962 and on - A Brief History of a Band
Pete Mackie records for posterity the trials of being a rock star!
1961 - The Day We Went to Osmotherley
An old photo from Brian Humpherson and Eileen Maughan (Ross)
1960 - The Stocktonian
An old GGS (Boys) publication from 1960 has emerged from Brian Humpherson's "archive". The Stocktonian is clearly a pupil written and produced sheet with what can only be described as weird content.
This is not to be confused with the official Stocktonian Year Book - all editions of which can be found at https://heritage.stockton.gov.uk/resources/the-stocktonian/
1965 - Allen Ginsberg in the Village Hall
In replying to the invitation to our 2022 Reunion and the suggestion of a “Beatnik Ball”, Carolyn said …
“It's in the diary and you can add me to the list but I think I'm a little too young to remember what a 'Beatnik' was/is!!”
To which Peter Cowperthwaite replied …
I think we might all be a bit young to remember the Beat Generation of Kerouac and Ginsberg etc. The nearest I got to it was late night browsing of City Lights Bookstore in San Francisco and drinking in the pub next door allegedly sitting in the seats where the main movers had sat. By the time we were in our teens, I remember being called a Beatnik for walking along Whitby sea front in bare feet. Which rather missed the point. So unsure about how to participate as a Beatnik unless it means hitch hiking to Chepstow, wearing scruffy clothes now regarded as ‘casual’ and sitting round reading Ginsberg s poetry while the Cyclones jam some jazz. Maybe we were the Beatles generation, on the whole safer!?
Must watch the Prime video on the Beat Generation. “
To which Ned replied …
“Hi Peter et al,
I think it was the summer of 1965 after A-levels. There were 4 or 5 of us in Brian's mother's yellow mini, Brian, Pete Sharp, Paul, myself and possibly Chris Copeland (Chris can you recall if you were there?) We were, on a sunny day, on a drive out in North Yorkshire. We chanced upon the village of Hawnby, I should point out that this is not the village of Hornby, which I could have misspelt and about which, more later.
Memory fades after all these years and I am uncertain whether it was lunchtime or early evening but we found our way into the village pub. There was a poster for a poetry reading in the village hall which, as it happened, was starting almost immediately. The poet was Allen Ginsberg. We discussed at length whether we should attend this strangely incongruous cultural experience in a small village hall in North Yorkshire. Finally Brian decided he would go and the rest of us, not having to drive stayed put, to enjoy the fare of the pub.
I regret that decision to this day and, as the reading was quite long and we had time to consume a number of pints I'm not certain I was awake for the entirety of Brian's critical assessment of the artistic merit of the event he gave us on the drive home.”
To which Fiona added ...
In the early 70’s, as a fledgling television reporter, I had the surreal experience of interviewing Allen Ginsberg for BBC Look North. Unlike Brian I was not already familiar with Ginsberg’s work but in preparation I quickly read up on him. I found out he was currently setting William Blake’s Songs of Innocence and Experience to music. I turned up at the Newcastle flat that was hosting Ginsberg and spotted he had an antique portable organ keyboard with him. Whilst the cameraman was setting up I suggested Ginsberg keep the instrument in shot - thinking I might ‘cleverly’ refer to it at some point. However as soon as we turned over and I asked Ginsberg what brought him to Newcastle, he began to sing every response to me - starting with “I came to Newcastle to look into Fiona Johnston’s eyes, to be on television and to sing anything I could devise...” The hilarious thing was that I was so taken aback that I never made any comment on his singing and just ploughed on with one absurd question after another - to which he sang every answer. Back in the studio they all howled with laughter. Surreal. Afterwards I probably downed the odd gin and tonic in the BBC Club.
A similar vehicles as described by Ned, and the man himself - Allen Ginsberg.
1964 - Rolling With The Stones?
1963 - The Evening of 22nd November 1963
On the Evening of 22nd November 1963 The Beatles played the Globe Theatre, Stockton-on-Tees, the USA President, John F Kennedy, was assassinated in Dallas, Texas and Stockton's teenagers would remember the day.
On 6th September 2021 the Globe Theatre, Stockton re-opened following a £26M refurbishment.
Some of those memories ...
Annie Magee wrote:
For those who were there (Nov. 1963) at that moment of incredible coincidence in history, The Globe reopens tonight (with McFly) after a long closure, and a £26m refurb. On 17th, the Bootleg Beatles will play-a pity it's so soon, as this could have been an opportunity for a mini-reunion to relive old times-but I'm sure they'll be back.
For those who weren't lucky enough to have tickets nearly 60 years ago, you didn't miss hearing The Beatles, just seeing them, because this was the live music equivalent of a silent movie-you couldn't actually hear them play because of all the screaming! (not guilty!). Then spilling out onto the street, and as we were milling around outside the front of the Globe, the atmosphere changed completely with those historic words from someone in the crowd "President Kennedy's been shot", and shock and disbelief combined with the euphoria of seeing the Fab Four. It must have happened around the time we were going in. I'm sure this should be etched in history somewhere, but I don't think this 60s teen experience was captured by the newsreels then.
Still on the Beatles theme, does anyone remember a party at Susan Fleming's-1967 I think? The house was on the market recently, and I took a look at the online pics.-it's changed completely, of course, & been "improved", but in my mind's eye, I could see it just as it was, all to the backdrop of the fantastic Beatles soundtrack that was playing at the time.
Cliff Thornton replied:
Thanks for the memory Annie.
Meanwhile at the other end of the High Street, some of us were in the Odeon watching the latest James Bond film, “From Russia With Love”.
At one stage the film stopped and the manager came onto the stage in his best bib and tucker.
The audience thought he had come to apologise for some technical hitch with the film.
But instead, he announced that President Kennedy had been shot, before exiting stage left.
We sat in amazement wondering if that was the end of the evening’s entertainment, and we were all supposed to head home.
But the lights went down and the film restarted and went on without any further interruption.
As you say, a memorable evening.
I was at the Globe the night JFK was shot. I think the Beatles played there in Nov 63 and I saw them again at the Globe the following year. Great to know that the theatre is being restored to its former glory.
Cheers, John E
I was at the Odeon that night. I remember the manager Bernard Goldstein coming on stage to make the announcement. I was with Brian Calender who immediately said "its the commies what done it".
Incidentally Bernard Goldstein lived close to Rupert Bradshaw.
A very sad night.
Fiona Asián Del Barco:
His daughter Heather Goldstein was a pupil at Grangefield Girls
Fiona Asián Del Barco
What was missed if you weren’t at the Globe on 22/11/63 was , the all night street party as we queued several weeks earlier all round the Globe for tickets on sale the next morning . It was till then the most exiting night of my life . Come to think of it —— . But memories deceive me . I was convinced we were dancing to Martha and the Vandellas but Wikipedia tells me Dancing in the Street wasn’t recorded till 1964 . Ah yes — .
Love to all .
It was November 22nd 1963, the evening before my 16th birthday and I was in Yarm on an errand for some reason, when I heard of the assassination of JFK. I just remember being very upset as I thought he was such a marvellous young enthusiastic President and he was a breath of fresh air amongst the usual fuddy duddies!
Over the years my opinion changed, of course, when became known about his involvement with Marilyn Monroe, drugs and even more womanising!
And the Bay of Pigs .
Nicole and I were at the Globe that evening too. I did not grasp the significance of the assassination until the following morning, a Saturday, on the top deck of the bus back from clarinet practice in Billingham. Looking over the shoulder of a man reading the front page of the Telegraph, I realised it was the first time I had ever seen a single headline across the entire page of the Telegraph - in caps.
as I recall Beatles came to Teeside three times on 25th of June 1963 I took my then "girlfriend" (not a long-lived or particularly successful relationship) Margaret Hill, photo attached probably the best thing that came out of our short lived adolescent communion. We went to the Astoria ballroom in Middlesbrough where the Beatles were playing at a dance!, In theory at least, in fact the entire audience was crowded on, and around the stage and in common with most other Beatles performances at the time very little could be heard of their music.
I remember being on the stage part of a cordon of people trying to protect the band from the ongoing crush of screaming fans to enable them to keep playing. Anyway I was very close to them, the evening was less successful at the end as I somehow managed to spend all my money and had to leave my new watch as a deposit with the stationmaster for him to lend us the money to enable us to get the train back to Stockton!
Whilst looking for the photo of Margaret I chanced upon the contact strip, taken in 1965/66 of the Singer roadster in its usual position with the bonnet open, and us peering inside wondering what we need to do to make it go again!
The second time the Beatles appeared at the Globe in Stockton was on 15 October 1964, a momentous night as it was the night of the general election when Bill Rogers (later of the gang of four) was elected as the MP for Stockton-on-Tees. And the Labour government with a majority of four was elected. I was at the announcement of the count at the Town Hall in the High Street and during the proceedings a Rolls-Royce containing the Fab Four sped down the High Street with four mounted policeman galloping alongside. That seemed to me at the time to be proof that the Beatles had become almost royalty.
Hope to see you next year in June
I'm impressed with the detail in the memories. Is it with reference to kept diaries? However, I do have very vivid memories of walking along Stockton high street after that Beatle concert and hearing about Kennedy being shot. A marker. Loss of innocence. And I have good memories of Margaret Hunt, Ned,who moved to Hull. She was not afraid to be different.
Best wishes to all, Jill
Well that started quite a flurry of e-mails Annie!
The Globe looks wonderful on their website, certainly worth a visit. And yes, I was also their on the night – the day after my 17th birthday. Can’t remember if I was inside or outside since I suspect I couldn’t afford a ticket. Sounds like we were all having a mini reunion without realising it. I do remember walking home that evening to find my parents in a state of shock at the news. At the time we once or twice parked the band’s van (KNL 544), almost identical to this one …
around the back of Robinson’s all night and took turns in the queue for tickets to the Globe for certain shows, so maybe that was one such night. Here’s the playbill for that night and, in the light of Charlie Watts recent death, another for a Rolling Stones concert from Brian H.
The explanation for The Cyclones appearance can be found in the Memories section of The Cyclones website here https://www.the-cyclones.com/pas-a-pas/memories (last item on the page).
Wonderful to see the old shots of the magnificent Singer, Ned. Here’s another from the same day in Piccadilly Circus, stalled and cranking, and another demonstrating the various “modifications” made to the car’s bodywork.
While we’re here, many thanks to everyone who has so far responded to the Chepstow ’22 event. For those who haven’t yet replied, it’d be good to hear from anyone who may have an interest in perhaps attending so we can complete the final mailing list for future updates.
All the best,
This is from my memoirs/memory ...
When ‘The Beatles’ play the local Globe on 22 Nov 1963 there is a frenzy of fans there. I am not there. Bob Dylan and the rawer ‘Rolling Stones/Come On' have already caught my attention and I am out somewhere now lost in time, but not at the Globe. I come home to Bishopton Avenue elevenish. The news on TV and radio is devastating: ‘Shortly after noon on November 22, 1963, President John F. Kennedy was assassinated as he rode in a motorcade through Dealey Plaza in downtown Dallas…’. I remember the shock and the disbelief of my parents and my own incredulity. But the satire on BBC TV - ‘That Was The Week That Was’ (TW3) has already become compulsory viewing on a Saturday night. The edition on Saturday, 23 November 1963 is one of the most moving pieces of TV I have ever seen as Millicent Martin sings "In the Summer of His Years" as a tribute to the assassinated President, who seemed to hold a torch for change in the USA.
Does anyone else remember watching this performance? Where were we? I recall it was often a communal/party experience ….
Here’s a link to the Millicent Martin song on YouTube ..
Archie poses the question, where were we? I cannot remember definitely but have a vague feeling we were in Eaglescliffe somewhere closer to Stockton but on the same side of the road as Fiona's house could it have been Nigel Smiles?
Could have been David Gray’s house? Large house midway between Eaglescliffe village hall and the turn into Eaglescliffe station.
David Gray – ex Tremors along with Tap-Tap Thomson!!!
.... and now here's my contribution. Yes I was there at the Globe screaming away with Lesley, Jill and Vanda and ??? I had not been allowed to stay out all night in the queue to get the tickets but Vanda was!! So we did part of the day shifts and supplied food for the campers. And yes we heard the news about Kennedy as we came out into the foyer after the show ( I also thought John Lennon announced it on stage but I may have made that up!) We had seats pretty near the front and it was an amazing experience. We went again in 1964 but ended up with seats upstairs if I remember rightly. As for the Odeon - Susan Douglas's mum was the assistant manager and she got us (Lesley?Jill? Susan and maybe Libby) front row seats to see The Rolling Stones at the Odeon, possibly 1963 or maybe 64. I remember we felt a bit intimidated and a little uncomfortable being so near them as I certainly wasn't as much in love with them as Paul, George, John and Ringo!
When I met my Paul he had a guitar that once belonged to Paul McCartney. They used to live near each other in Speke and played footy together. But that's another story for another time! They also both went to the Liverpool Institute though Paul Mc was a few years ahead. Mike McCartney lives in Heswall here on the Wirral and I have seen him in Tesco a couple of times!
Hope everyone is OK. I'm now back on 'after school duty' for grandchildren- they are on their phones as soon as they come in so thought I'd join them. They are both now at High School - Georgina has just started at Wirral Grammar School for Girls. It is attached to the Boys' School and the set up is pretty similar to Grangefield even though it's 60+ years on!!
Bye for now - Carolyn xx
I believe that The Beatles performance was on the 22 Nov 1963 and the pre-concert venue was Archie’s parents’ house where we heard the sad news about Kennedy on the radio (wireless)?
Or am I conflating a number of disconnected occasions? i.e., Chuck Berry May 13 1964.
Rgds, Phil Knowles
Methinks the Beatles pre-concert gathering at Bishopton Ave didn't happen as I never went to the Globe that night (as far as I remember!). My diary of 1963 frustratingly, mysteriously, has no entries for the latter part of the year. I think I missed that gig. But the 1965 diary records I went to 23 Jan 1965 Chuck Berry gig at the Odeon, also with the Graham Bond Organisation (drummer Ginger Baker), the Moody Blues and Long John Baldry and the Hoochy Coochy Men - though I only remember Chuck and the GBO as his backing band. Maybe that was the day of a pre-concert assembly? The Millicent Martin TW3 viewing loc remains a mystery unless Ned is right.... although I have no recollection of Nigel Smiles!! Not unusual for some of the party hosts in those days ....
The Globe - Stockton-on-Tees
22nd November 1963
The Singer Roadster in London
The Cyclones Van
The Beatles Playbill for the night of 22-11-1963 at the Globe
"The Cyclones" on the Rolling Stones Playbill of
The Singer Roadster in Piccadilly Circus, London
The Beatles Playbill for the night of 22-11-1963 at the Globe