Author Topic: "West Ham Open Air School"  (Read 27362 times)

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Offline Hansen

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"West Ham Open Air School"
« on: 04 April, 2011, 05:33:18 PM »
Hi,
Did anyone go to West Ham Open Air School (Fyfield Boarding School) between 1948 and 1952. Be pleased to hear from anyone who went there between 48 and 52. Or has any information at all. (I'm doing this for my Dad). It was opened in 1884 by West Ham Education Authority, apparently. Thanks.

Offline nellanhoj

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Re: "West Ham Open Air School"
« Reply #1 on: 04 April, 2011, 09:25:29 PM »
Hansen, try this link!

http://newhamstory.com/forums/index.php?action=printpage;topic=114.0 (http://newhamstory.com/forums/index.php?action=printpage;topic=114.0)

Offline harry

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Re: "West Ham Open Air School"
« Reply #2 on: 04 April, 2011, 11:08:03 PM »
My sister my brother and I were all sent to fyfield open air school,at different times,my sister and I in1943,and my brother around 1950.
The school is now a small housing estate,the front part of the school the main building has been let off into luxery flats, one being sold in the last couple of months for £320,000 pounds,I bet Mr Smith the old head master would be rather shocked at that amount.
Regards Harry.

Offline poppy show

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Re: "West Ham Open Air School"
« Reply #3 on: 05 April, 2011, 12:05:27 AM »
All i know about fyfield open air school is that my older brother went there sometime in the 1940s .every time we drove past there , he used go on about how cold he was in there. and how he was trying to warm his hands up on the big old radiators with chilblains on his hands.
I myself was put in a home some where in the country side in about 1954 i have not got a clue where it was ,i  would like to find out where it was and why i was in there ? but not sure how to go about it           Regards Barry
« Last Edit: 05 April, 2011, 12:33:04 AM by poppy show »

Offline Hansen

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Re: "West Ham Open Air School"
« Reply #4 on: 05 April, 2011, 07:49:47 AM »
Thank you all for getting back to me.  I have been in touch with Essex Records Office. Really helpful.  Dad found out the dates with help from his medical records, held by his present GP, thats a starting point Barry.  My Dad has only bad memories of the school, unfortunately. Be great to hear from anyone with memories of the school.

Thanks again, Jackie ;)

Offline ALANF

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Re: "West Ham Open Air School"
« Reply #5 on: 05 April, 2011, 09:46:39 AM »
My Father and his younger Sister were sent there at the turn of the century. He would have been 7 or 8 and she would have been 3 or 4. Their parents had split up and their older siblings were sent to live with a Grandmother. They do not appear anywhere on the 1901 census, was this usual for this home? They appear again in the 1911 census, Dad had joined the Army as a boy soldier, and the girl was back with her Mother. I have made enquiries as to any records of names that may be available, but was told that there are no records before 1917. Does anyone know different?
Alan

Offline Hansen

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Re: "West Ham Open Air School"
« Reply #6 on: 05 April, 2011, 01:03:14 PM »
Hi AlanF

I have been in touch with the Essex Records Office, I have asked them for a search of admissions to Fyfield Boarding School between 1948-1952. I rung them and they were really helpful, so I am hopeful that they will email with some info.
Hope thats of help to you. There seems to be a lot of people looking for answers as to why they were sent there, my dad included.

Offline GeoffM

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Re: "West Ham Open Air School"
« Reply #7 on: 05 April, 2011, 04:29:00 PM »
I was down there about 1954 the headmaster there then was Mr J J P Underwood also remember a Mr & Mrs Grover 2 of the teachers and have quite a few memories from there one is of a plane from North Weald crashing in the fields at the back of the school we got bits off of it but the RAF police came to the school and we had to give them all back. Used to have dance lessons The Waltz & one was called The Gay Gordons! also we had to lay down on camp beds in the afternoon for a rest. Lots of other memories as well most were good.
The photo attached is from a postcard I sent to my mother at the time the low building directly on the left was the Games Room and in the corner was the entrance to the Headmasters accomadation most of the windows in centre were the dormitories.

GeoffM

Offline harry

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Re: "West Ham Open Air School"
« Reply #8 on: 05 April, 2011, 08:25:22 PM »
Mr Underwood took over as head master from Mr Smith,who had a false leg, which made him walk with a distinct gate,squeak clonk,squeak clonk squeak clonk!!.
When I was there the American air field at Willingale had just been built and from the playground at the front of the school we would watch the planes taking off for their daylight bombing raids on Europe,the planes  were Marauders.
Being there during the war,there were times when there would be air raid warnings and we would have to take cover in the cellar beneath the front part of the school.
Mr Grover I too remember as punishment he used to pull you across his knee pull up your trouser leg and slap you across the back of leg,quite painfull!
In the summer evenings Mr Smith used to arrange competitions for the boy,s,one of which I remember was to bowl a tennis ball at a set spring return cricket stumps,the top of which he would place pennies[old pennies],we took it in turns bowling and the pennies that you knocked off you kept.
The other I quite enjoyed was to make paper aeroplanes using that nice slippery toilet paper made I believe by san izal.the object of the game was to see who could fly his plane for the longest time,and I found that if you got quite near to the building there was a nice updraft that would keep your plane flying for quite a time.
The only dance I remember was Rufty Tufty a country dance.
I also liked the country walks we took with some of the teachers,being wartime we could not go out of bounds unsupervised .
Regards Harry

Offline GeoffM

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Re: "West Ham Open Air School"
« Reply #9 on: 05 April, 2011, 09:08:11 PM »
Harry.

I remember being told that at the side of the school there was a rubbish tip or compost heap & that one of Mr Smiths wooden legs was on top of or in it waiting to be burnt.

Also the Airfield at Willingale could that be the same one that we used to go over to that was deserted and all the hangers had holes in which we took to be bullet holes..We used to be allowed out on our own I think at weekends and used to walk to North Weald airfield and also go to the abandoned one but I don't think we were meant to go there.

GeoffM

Offline rosieandrews

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Re: "West Ham Open Air School"
« Reply #10 on: 06 April, 2011, 09:02:25 PM »
 :)Hi

My sister and I went to Fyfields, we were told it was a convalesance home as we were under nourished.  I cannot remember anything about it -I cannot remember any dates - how old do you think we would have been - I was thinking we may have been 6 or 7 years of age which which would make the year  about 1949/1950.  Does anyone have any photos at that time.

Would like to hear from anyone who maybe able to help.

Thank you

Rosie Andrews born and bred in Silvertown :)




Offline GeoffM

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Re: "West Ham Open Air School"
« Reply #11 on: 06 April, 2011, 10:02:04 PM »
Hi Rosie.

I was also told it was for convalescence and I think I spent something like 8 months there altogether when I was about 11yrs old as I think I did an exam there which was probably the 11 plus. I don't remember seeing anyone as young as 6 or 7. I do remember arriving on the coach with a load of other girls and boys and one of them run away as soon as we got there I think the police brought him back.
I recently got in touch with someone from there through Friends Reunited as I had kept a list of names & addresses and although most of the pupils were from West Ham area there were some from Clacton, Plymouth, Buckinghamshire & Derby.

These pictures have been posted before but thought would post again They show the Dining Room, which I remember well, also the playground one laying on the Camp Beds which I also remember.

GeoffM

Offline Hansen

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Re: "West Ham Open Air School"
« Reply #12 on: 08 April, 2011, 07:45:52 AM »
Rosie, you would have been at the school the same year as my Dad. We have been in touch with Newham Archives, they will be able to tell you the date you were admitted and the date you were discharged. Email archiveslocalstudies@newham.gov.uk. They need your full name, D.O.B and your address at the time. Good luck.
My Dad has registered on here by they say its being dealt with it by their "admin", don't know who to contact, can anybody help please?
Once he can access this Im sure he would like to share his experiences. Thank you.

Offline rosieandrews

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Re: "West Ham Open Air School"
« Reply #13 on: 08 April, 2011, 08:49:21 PM »
Hi Jackie

Thanks for the email address, I will go onto to it straight away.  By the way what area did you dad come from?  Has your dad have any luck in joining, as when I joined it was straight away if I can remember.

If you have any more news of Fyfields let me know.

Look forward to hearing frm you.

Rosie Andrews
Born and bred in Silvertown  :)

Offline harry

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re trip to switzerland via swiss red cross
« Reply #14 on: 09 April, 2011, 09:42:17 PM »
In 1947 I with rather a large group of School children from West Ham went on a three month holiday staying with Swiss families through I believe the Swiss Red Cross ,does anyone know of anybody who went on this trip?.
Regards Harry.