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Proof schooldays are some of best !
A BOOKLET charting the history of one of Swindon’s largest schools sold out just a few weeks after it was published, to the delight and surprise of the people behind the project.
Now a second edition of the 60-page publication ‘The Kingsdown School Story….So Far’ has been printed to cope with an ongoing demand.
Retired Kingsdown School science teacher Bob Pixton, 65, who researched and wrote the book, said: “I am overwhelmed at the interest and very pleased that the school has decided to reprint it.
“I was delighted that all the copies went so quickly. It shows what an enormous interest there is in the school.
“Many people, when they leave school, are only too glad to be away and never want to have any dealings with it again.
“However, I’ve found that a lot of ex-Kingsdown pupils – some of whose children also became Kingsdown pupils – have an enduring interest in the school and what’s going on there.
“Having looked at other books to celebrate the anniversaries of schools, it must be said that Kingsdown’s surpasses them all in terms of layout, range of pictures, colour and length.”
Bob, who taught at Kingsdown for 36 years, added: “Even now, people are sending me old pictures of the school and all sorts of information about its life and times.”
Former Swindon borough councillor Bob said the original idea was to produce a 16-page pamphlet marking the school’s 75th anniversary last year.’ but it ended up being 60 pages.
Its initial run of 100 copies sold out last month. The book follows the school’s progress from the day it opened, with a hearty rendition of God Save the King, on Wednesday, January 27, 1937.
Until then local children in what was a predominantly rural area were taught from a collection of sites including a former church hall and a British Legion hall.
Originally known as Upper Stratton Senior School it was built on a plot of land acquired from Arkells Brewery and has grown over the years from an initial five classrooms to more than 60 today – reflecting Swindon’s massive growth. The book charts a variety of activities from sports days and drama productions to school trips.
However, there is one glaring omission – no one was able find a photograph of one of Kingsdown’s former head teachers, Iain Millar, who was at the helm from 1968 to 1974.
Exhaustive searches for an image of Mr Millar, who is understood to have died aged 71 in Weymouth in 1986, have sadly drawn a blank.
- ‘The Kingsdown School Story… So Far’ is priced £8.52 and is available from the school office on 01793 837152.
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