Memories

Random Memories and Events

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1965 - The Chocolate Box

Story 1.pdf


1966 - The Singer Roadster

Singer Roadster.pdf


1964 - The Tiger Hunts

Tiger.pdf


1964 - Jilted

Jilted.pdf


1966 - Le Grand Prix de Swainby

Swainby.pdf


1964 - The Umbrella at Brotherswater

Brotherswater.pdf


1959 - Prize Day

Prize Day.pdf


2019 - In a Chepstow Kitchen

Chepstow Kitchen.pdf


1950/60s - School Rules

School Rules.pdf


1962/3 - The Langdale Expeditions

Langdale.pdf


1963 - Alfred "Bloody" Wainwright

Wainwright.pdf


1960s - Boys in Newcastle (& Elsewhere!)

Cliff Photos.pdf


1960s - FVP (Frequently Visited Pubs)

FVP.pdf


18-11-2020 Peter Sharp

Pete Sharp Nov 2020 v3.pdf


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

Railway trespassers 1966.pdf


1962 and on - A Brief History of a Band

Pete Mackie records for posterity the trials of being a rock star!

Cyclones History 8.pdf


1961 - The Day We Went to Osmotherley

An old photo from Brian Humpherson and Eileen Maughan (Ross)

FOY Outing 2.pdf