Reduced staff

Wartime (and post-war) staff shortages meant a reduced curriculum for some children.

10th May 1919

When, as here, owing to a reduced staff, only the middle group subjects are very wisely attempted by the upper part of the school.

Ashampstead C of E School log book (D/EX1493/1, p. 246)

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Released from military duties

Another teacher was back.

10th February 1919.

The head master, having been released from military duties, resumed charge of school today.

Aldermaston School log book (88/SCH/3/3, p. 101)

Due to the general prevalence of illness throughout the county, people in many districts have been averse to congregating together

Applications for roadside war memorials were starting to come before Berkshire County Council.

Report of the Highways and Bridges Committee, 11 January 1919

WAR MEMORIALS

An application has been received from the Bath Road Club for sanction to erect a war memorial, in the form of a signpost, near Aldermaston lane on the Bath road.

The Committee do not recommend that consent be given.

A similar application from Cookham for permission to erect a memorial in the form of an Iona Cross is under consideration.


Report of Agricultural Instruction Committee to Education Committee, 11 January 1919

…The Committee present the following report of the Agricultural Organiser, received from the Principal and Acting Dean of University College, Reading, viz…

It should be pointed out that [during the quarter ending 31 December 1918] the work has been disorganized by the general prevalence of illness throughout the county. People in many districts have been averse to congregating together, with the result that in some places it was impossible to get audiences, whilst in others it was found necessary to postpone, or cancel, lectures which had been arranged. Moreover most, if not all members engaged on county work, have suffered illness during the quarter.

G S Bedford
Agricultural Organiser…

TRAINING OF DISCHARGED OFFICERS

The Committee have been asked to carry out a scheme for the training in agriculture of discharged officers; and a special Sub-committee has been appointed, consisting of representatives of this Committee, the Agricultural Executive Committee and the War Pensions Committee (in consultation with the Local Director of the Ministry of Labour). Under the scheme selected officers will receive an allowance of £125 per annum for 2 years, and additional allowances will be made to married officers, with children, up to £90. The administration of the scheme, and the amount of award, have been entrusted to this committee….

TRAINING OF MILKERS

Out of 29 applications, fifteen certificates have been awarded to women who (without State assistance) had been milking since the commencement of the war, and previous to 1918. Letters of appreciation have been sent to the applicants whose work was satisfactory, but whose length of service did not entitle them to certificates….

BCC minutes (C/CL/C1/1/22)

Baskets of blackberries

After a delay, the Aldermaston children’s collections were sent off.

Aldermaston
3rd October 1918.

Baskets arrived this morning. 38lbs of blackberries sent away.

Great Coxwell
3rd October 1918

Children went out black-berrying

Hampstead Norreys
3rd Oct.

We closed on Tuesday & Wed. afternoons and this (Thurs) morning for blackberrying. 216 lbs have been weighed & sent off this week totalling 1756 lbs altogether.

Little Coxwell
Oct: 3rd

The older children are going out to pick blackberries, so registers will not be marked.

Log book of Aldermaston School (88/SCH/3/3); Great Coxwell CE School (C/EL81/2); Hampstead Norreys CE School (C/EL40/2); Little Coxwell CE School (C/EL80)

Taking charge for the duration of the war

Berkshire children continued to gather fruit for jam, while some teachers were still being redeployed to cover shortages.

Hurst
1st October 1918

The head master was asked by the Education Secretary to the visit the council school at Three Mile Cross near Reading and interview the Head Teacher of that school preparatory to taking charge for the duration of the war.

East Ilsley
1st October 1918

Elder children & those whose parents wished allowed the afternoon to get another day picking black-berries. Probably the last.

Little Coxwell
Oct: 1st

Registers will not be marked in the afternoon as the older children are going blackberrying.

Aldermaston
1st October 1918.

Half day for blackberrying, no baskets arrived and berries not sent off.

Datchet
1 October 1918

Blackberrying this afternoon.

Sparsholt
Oct 1st

The children had half holiday for blackberry picking.


Log books: Datchet School (SCH30/8/3); East Ilsley CE School log book (C/EL39/1, p. 487); Hurst School (D/P73/28/23); Little Coxwell CE School (C/EL80); Aldermaston School (88/SCH/3/3); Sparsholt CE School D/P115/28/47)

Jam for the soldiers

The children were paid for their berrying activities.

Boyne Hill
Sept: 26th

Owing to the necessity of economy in the consumption of fuel and lighting it has been decided to open all schools at 1.30 pm instead of 2 pm from Oct: 1st.

Great Coxwell
26th September 1918

Instead of nature study walk, children went black-berrying this afternoon. The berries (13lbs) to be made into jam for the soldiers.

Aldermaston
26th September 1918.

Half day for blackberrying, 58lbs.

Lower Sandhurst
September 26th 1918

I paid the sum of £30 – 8s – 5d to the children for blackberry picking.


Log books: Boyne Hill Girls’ CE School (C/EL121/3); Great Coxwell CE School (C/EL81/2, p. 81); Lower Sandhurst School (C/EL/66/1, p. 449); and Aldermaston School (88/SCH/3/3, p. 94)

Fruit and nuts for gas masks

Wallingford boys were collecting various kinds of fruit.

Wallingford
1918, 18 September

Visited (pm) by Mr J Brown in connection with arrangements for collection of blackberries. We are already collecting nut-shells and plum-stones, for carbon used in gasmasks.

Hurst
18th September 1918

School closed the whole day owing to the Hurst fete at Staines Hill for the providing of funds for the Hurst prisoners of war.

Aldermaston
18th September 1918

Half holiday, 68lbs of blackberries.

Buscot
Sept. 18th

Older children gathered 88 ½ lbs blackberries – sent to Faringdon.

Log books: Wallingford Boys Council School (SCH22/8/3); Aldermaston School (88/SCH/3/3, p. 94); Hurst C of E Boys School (D/P73/28/23, p. 37)Buscot CE School (C/EL73/2);

Blackberrying

More blackberrying by Berkshire children.

Aldermaston
17th September 1918

Half holiday to pick blackberries, 89lbs picked and sent off by evening train.

Lower Sandhurst
September 17th 1918

Half holiday this afternoon for blackberrying.

Datchet
17 September 1918

Blackberrying this afternoon.

Buscot
Sept 17th

Older children with 2 teachers went blackberrying; 93 ¼ lbs gathered, weighed and sent to Central Agent.

Log books: Lower Sandhurst School (C/EL/66/1, p. 447); Datchet National Mixed School (SCH30/8/3, p. 406); and Aldermaston School (88/SCH/3/3, pp. 93-94); Buscot CE School (C/EL73/2)

Our hearty good-will and our deep sense of all that France has and is suffering for the cause of freedom and the Allies

Bastille Day, the French national day, is actually on 14 July, commemorating the fall of the Bastille and start of the French Revolution. Berkshire schools clearly had a rather vague grasp of French history, but cannot be faulted for their admiration for our ally.

Aldworth
July 12th 1918

On Friday afternoon, being France’s National Day, the children were addressed by the Vicar, the French Flag saluted and the Marseillaise sung – the following letter was also sent to the President of the French Republic:

Aldworth Vicarage
Reading
England

July 12th 1918

Dear Mr President,

The inhabitants of Aldworth wish to take the opportunity, which France’s National Day affords, to express to you our hearty good-will and our deep sense of all that France has and is suffering for the cause of freedom and the Allies.

We also take this opportunity to assure you that we are determined that the war shall at length, at whatever cost, be waged to a victorious issue.

Believe us to be, dear Mr President, your most devoted Allies.

(signed) A. L Watson, Vicar of Aldworth, Chairman of the Parish Council

Coleshill
12th July 1918

At noon to-day the children first saluted ‘The French Flag’ and then our ‘Union Jack’ in the playground. After this they sang ‘the Marseillaise’ and our own National Anthem, this being ‘France’s Day’.

Aldermaston
12th July 1918.

Pamphlets have been sent by the local War Aims committee to be given to the children today to commemorate France’s Day July 14th. The Head Teacher will give a short explanation of the subject to the school.

Hinton Waldrist
July 12th 1918

France’s Day. Children assembled in playground at 1.30. An address given by Capt: J. Loder Symonds. The French Flag and Union Jack saluted. The Marseillaise and God Save the King sung.


Log books: Aldworth School (C/EL54/3); Coleshill CE School (D/P40/28/5); Aldermaston School (88/SCH/3/3); Hinton Waldrist C of E Schoolk (C/EL84/2)

Notice to join the Army

Another headmaster was forced to join the army.

7th June 1918.
Alfred Randall 05/1842, who has been in charge of this school since November 29th 1910, ceases to be head teacher after today, he having received notice to join the Army on June 12th.

Aldermaston School log book (88/SCH/3/3, p. 89)

Orders to attend a medical inspection

More school teachers might be called up if physically up to standard.

Aldermaston
14th May 1918.

The head teacher is absent today having received orders from the Military Authorities to attend a medical Inspection at Reading.

Windsor
May 14th 1918

Mr Wheatley had to appear before the Army Medical Board on Tuesday and hence the wood work course was closed for the day.

Log books of Aldermaston School (88/SCH/3/3, p. 88); St Stephen’s Boys’ School, Windsor (88/SCH/23/7, p. 163)

Awaiting orders for France

Another teacher’s brother was about to head to the Front.

29th April 1918.
Miss Aclee was absent all day, having received permission from the managers to pay a visit to her brother who is awaiting orders for France.

Aldermaston School log book (88/SCH/3/3, p. 87)

Mr Snow’s steam-trolley

The railways might not be co-operating, but they had an ingenious solution in Wallingford.

Wallingford
1918, 5 March

Mr Snow’s steam-trolley took away 24 sacks of Horse-Chestnuts.

Aldermaston
5th March 1918

A war savings association was started this morning. 11 children became members.

Wallingford Boys Council School log book (SCH22/8/3); Aldermaston School log book (88/SCH/3/3, p. 83)

Appeal to the children to do their duty in helping to end the War

The National War Aims Committee, and its local affiliates, were a new venture in 1917 to bolster patriotic fervour and commitment to the war effort.

30th January 1918
Messers Forster and Wright, joint secretaries of the South Berks War Aims Committee called this morning, and distributed a number of leaflets bearing on their work and appealed to the children to do their duty in helping to end the War.

Aldermaston School log book (88/SCH/3/3, p. 81)

A commercial kitchen for school children

School dinners, promised a week or two earlier, were instituted in Aldermaston, while an old boy came to visit his old teacher in Sandhurst.

Aldermaston School
15th January 1918

A commercial kitchen was started in the village hall today, for the benefit of the school children, 57 children availed themselves of the opportunity, and were made up as follows- 23 over 10 years of ages, 20 under 10 years and over 7, 14 under 7 years.

Lower Sandhurst School
January 15th 1918

William Worrall, an old boy of the school, now a midshipman in the Royal Navy, came to see me to-day.

Aldermaston School log book (88/SCH/3/3, p. 80); Lower Sandhurst School log book (C/EL66/1, p. 421)