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George Dixons Grammar School

DavidGrain

master brummie
Following Peter Davies's post of the photo of the school orchestra, the boys will not mean anything to me as I left in 1960. I immediately looked to the piano for Geoff Sandercock (Sandy) as he was third choice pianist in school assembly after Geoff Fletcher and Cecil Fisher and always played piano in the orchestra. The leader of the orchestra (a Mr Williams?) was listed on the staff but was not a regular teacher as he came in after school to teach the violin.

I always thought that Mr L W T Sharp's first name was Leslie so was interested to see it as Lisle.

Wally Walker, the Second Master, was always regarded with terror by us boys, yet when you got to know him and were not in trouble he was a very nice person to talk to. Although he never taught me I was once in detention and watched him giving extra tuition to some 6th formers and realised that he was a very good teacher.
 

DPD

Brummie babby
Following Peter Davies's post of the photo of the school orchestra, the boys will not mean anything to me as I left in 1960. I immediately looked to the piano for Geoff Sandercock (Sandy) as he was third choice pianist in school assembly after Geoff Fletcher and Cecil Fisher and always played piano in the orchestra. The leader of the orchestra (a Mr Williams?) was listed on the staff but was not a regular teacher as he came in after school to teach the violin.

I always thought that Mr L W T Sharp's first name was Leslie so was interested to see it as Lisle.

Wally Walker, the Second Master, was always regarded with terror by us boys, yet when you got to know him and were not in trouble he was a very nice person to talk to. Although he never taught me I was once in detention and watched him giving extra tuition to some 6th formers and realised that he was a very good teacher.
Yes, the Leader of the school orchestra was Mr Williams. He was a peripatetic violin teacher and an OD. I remember getting the No. 11 outside school and Mr Walker was sitting opposite on the bench seat near the exit. I remembered my manners, 'Good afternoon, Sir,' raised my cap and sat down for which I received a gentle nod of acknowledgement.
 

DPD

Brummie babby
I must add Mark Williams whom I got to know quite well. He was very popular and used to Play leading roles in the Gilbert & Sullivan operettas we used to stage annually. I recall Peter Gregory and Robert Bissell both of whom lived across the road from the City Road School and were very friendly with each other. Graham Howe I also recall, being quite rotund and I think playing the horn in the orchestra. I also remember Clive Fraser who was larger than life and went on to become a University Professor surprisingly! There was also Peter Muller, of German descent who was very cerebral and already acted like a Professor don't know what happened to him.

Another memory is of the crates of 1/3 pint glass milk bottles in crates outside the main school entrance. A prefect used to supervise their distribution.

I remember too the morning gathering of pupils of other religions in a classroom especially the Jewish boys when Alan Zeffertt was the senior Jewish boy and Steven Linden was present too. I was also there and not in the church next door to the school. I will write more if other memories come to mind.
GD had a strong reputation in the B'ham Jewish community. I understand that it was the favoured school for boys who did not gain entry to KES. I think this was because there would be absolutely no toleration of anti-semitism.
 

David Hart

proper brummie kid
GD had a strong reputation in the B'ham Jewish community. I understand that it was the favoured school for boys who did not gain entry to KES. I think this was because there would be absolutely no toleration of anti-semitism.
The Jewish boys always met together in a classroom while the morning assembly was going on in the church next door. I was with the other Jewish boys being Jewish myself. I remember Alan Zeffertt and Steven Linden who were in the year above me and often we had our own service.
It was slightly awkward for me in my final year 1970/71 as I was School Captain and did not take the assembly in the church. I was the first Jewish boy to be appointed Head Boy since the school was founded in 1884.
 

DPD

Brummie babby
The Jewish boys always met together in a classroom while the morning assembly was going on in the church next door. I was with the other Jewish boys being Jewish myself. I remember Alan Zeffertt and Steven Linden who were in the year above me and often we had our own service.
It was slightly awkward for me in my final year 1970/71 as I was School Captain and did not take the assembly in the church. I was the first Jewish boy to be appointed Head Boy since the school was founded in 1884.
Thank you, David, for telling your account, and well done for being Head Boy--I must have been doing 'O' Levels when you started at GD. From my year Trev Duschenes would have attended your Service.
 

Harry Flashman

proper brummie kid
The Jewish boys always met together in a classroom while the morning assembly was going on in the church next door. I was with the other Jewish boys being Jewish myself. I remember Alan Zeffertt and Steven Linden who were in the year above me and often we had our own service.
It was slightly awkward for me in my final year 1970/71 as I was School Captain and did not take the assembly in the church. I was the first Jewish boy to be appointed Head Boy since the school was founded in 1884.

David, do you remember Eli and Michael Pedazur? How about Mark Gold. Eli and I were great rivals on sports day as we competed in the shot put and javelin. Mark and I remained friends for many years after GD. He was a very active member in PETA and is the author of several books.
 

David Hart

proper brummie kid
Yes, the Leader of the school orchestra was Mr Williams. He was a peripatetic violin teacher and an OD. I remember getting the No. 11 outside school and Mr Walker was sitting opposite on the bench seat near the exit. I remembered my manners, 'Good afternoon, Sir,' raised my cap and sat down for which I received a gentle nod of acknowledgement.
I used to play in the second violins for most of my years at GD. In the photo I recognise the maths teacher Mr Olver and Mr Harrison in the first violins and of course Mr Sandercock playing the piano. Terry Giblin is playing double bass as usual and Mr Sharp is in the second violins. Mr Fisher is conducting as usual. I especially loved it when we played at the annual Gilbert & Sullivan operettas.
 

David Hart

proper brummie kid
Thank you, David, for telling your account, and well done for being Head Boy--I must have been doing 'O' Levels when you started at GD. From my year Trev Duschenes would have attended your Service.
I remember Trev Duschenes. He was with us Jewish boys in the mornings and was a member with his family of the Birmingham Hebrew Congregation at Singer’s Hill Synagogue of which I and my family were also members. I always remember Trev as being rather overweight.
 

David Hart

proper brummie kid
David, do you remember Eli and Michael Pedazur? How about Mark Gold. Eli and I were great rivals on sports day as we competed in the shot put and javelin. Mark and I remained friends for many years after GD. He was a very active member in PETA and is the author of several books.
Of course I remember the two Pedazurs. Eli went on to become a doctor and was a GP somewhere in the Midlands but retired a few years ago and is no longer registered with the GMC. Michael I didn’t know so well but I remember they both looked very different and lived in Barnsley Road which Leads to City Road so not far from the school. They were Jewish too and I remember their father too and met them socially as well.
I don’t remember Mark Gold at all. Have you any news of them all now?
 

David Hart

proper brummie kid
I remember Eli and Michael from junior school, there was a Mark Goldberg?
rosie.
Never knew a Mark Goldberg. I remember Michael was always into music whereas Eli was athletic and better looking. I lost contact with both. I have a feeling Eli was a GP in Leamington.
 

Harry Flashman

proper brummie kid
Of course I remember the two Pedazurs. Eli went on to become a doctor and was a GP somewhere in the Midlands but retired a few years ago and is no longer registered with the GMC. Michael I didn’t know so well but I remember they both looked very different and lived in Barnsley Road which Leads to City Road so not far from the school. They were Jewish too and I remember their father too and met them socially as well.
I don’t remember Mark Gold at all. Have you any news of them all now?

No David. I lost touch with the Pedazur's after GD. Mark Goldberg and I saw each other socially for ten years or so, after GD. Sadly, I lost touch with Mark when I moved to the United States in 1986.
 

David Hart

proper brummie kid
No David. I lost touch with the Pedazur's after GD. Mark Goldberg and I saw each other socially for ten years or so, after GD. Sadly, I lost touch with Mark when I moved to the United States in 1986.
The Pedazurs changed their surname to Leyton for some reason but I have no contact with either of them. They must both be around 66 or 67 years old now.
 

DavidGrain

master brummie
Yes GD was very popular in the Jewish community. I remember three Jewish boys in my year and there were also two boys with Germanic names whose ancestry I suspect was Jewish. I am not Jewish but some people over the years have thought I might be. I have had people say Mazel Tov to me.

I used to have the job of making the tea three times a day for the teaching staff and when I left I passed that role on to two Jewish boys in the year below me.

Some years ago I was on a computer programming course where our tutor was Jewish and one of my fellow students was Jewish. The Jewish student told me that he went to St Philips, and I asked him why he had not gone to GD and he said that his father had been at GD and for some reason he did not want to be in his father's shadow.
 

David Hart

proper brummie kid
Yes GD was very popular in the Jewish community. I remember three Jewish boys in my year and there were also two boys with Germanic names whose ancestry I suspect was Jewish. I am not Jewish but some people over the years have thought I might be. I have had people say Mazel Tov to me.

I used to have the job of making the tea three times a day for the teaching staff and when I left I passed that role on to two Jewish boys in the year below me.

Some years ago I was on a computer programming course where our tutor was Jewish and one of my fellow students was Jewish. The Jewish student told me that he went to St Philips, and I asked him why he had not gone to GD and he said that his father had been at GD and for some reason he did not want to be in his father's shadow.
This is all very interesting. Also I didn’t know a boy had been specifically tasked with making tea for teaching staff three times a day. Wouldn’t happen nowadays.
In my day there were quite a few Jewish boys in the school.
 

DavidGrain

master brummie
This is all very interesting. Also I didn’t know a boy had been specifically tasked with making tea for teaching staff three times a day. Wouldn’t happen nowadays.
In my day there were quite a few Jewish boys in the school.
There were three of us sharing the role. We worked a rota two at a time. We were all volunteers. On parents days at Five Ways two of us used to go to Five Ways to spend the afternoon there making tea for the parents but that was not so much fun as the caretaker and his wife used to do the staff teas there and they thought they knew how to do it better than we did. On parents day at City Road, I was able to ask my mother if she would like a cup of tea while she was talking to my form master. That same year I also sorted out the filing system in the school secretary's office filing about two years copies of the school reports in the individual boy's files. Oh and I also did my O levels as a side line.
If we had had Work Experience in those days I think I could have said I did my work experience in the school office.
 

David Hart

proper brummie kid
There were three of us sharing the role. We worked a rota two at a time. We were all volunteers. On parents days at Five Ways two of us used to go to Five Ways to spend the afternoon there making tea for the parents but that was not so much fun as the caretaker and his wife used to do the staff teas there and they thought they knew how to do it better than we did. On parents day at City Road, I was able to ask my mother if she would like a cup of tea while she was talking to my form master. That same year I also sorted out the filing system in the school secretary's office filing about two years copies of the school reports in the individual boy's files. Oh and I also did my O levels as a side line.
If we had had Work Experience in those days I think I could have said I did my work experience in the school office.
A very interesting account, thanks for sharing it. You must be the king of tea making! My whole time at GD was spent in City Road, Five Ways had closed by then.
 

DavidGrain

master brummie
A very interesting account, thanks for sharing it. You must be the king of tea making! My whole time at GD was spent in City Road, Five Ways had closed by then.
I hate tea and never drink it. The same applied to all three of us, yet the one perk we were allowed was a free cup of tea for doing the work!
 

David Hart

proper brummie kid
I hate tea and never drink it. The same applied to all three of us, yet the one perk we were allowed was a free cup of tea for doing the work!
How very interesting! I remember the 1/3 pint glass milk bottles in crates. They were distributed each morning to classrooms and used initially to be outside the school main entrance. There was a prefect in charge of the distribution and I remember Steven Linden fulfilling this role in my later years at the school.
one of my greatest memories is of Les Summerton the Head of Physics. He used to each morning stand on the stage and always said boys requiring dinner tickets should see him in the ante-hall after the assembly. He was a large tall man who always wore braces with his trousers mostly up to chest level!
i have fond memories too of David Proctor the Latin teacher who always smelled of nicotine and whose fingers were yellow from his chain smoking.
Cecil Fisher I came to know well as we usually got off the number 9 bus at the King’s Head and then walked from there to the school on the mornings he worked, he was then part-time.
 

DavidGrain

master brummie
Going back to the school orchestra. L.E.Olver 'Leo' was my form master in Form 3B. Our form room was then in room 15 which was a pre-fab in the Back Quad. I remember that once a week Leo would collect all the school registers and go through them. I think he did the stats for absences from school which probably had to be reported to Margaret Street as the City Education Dept was always called.

As for David Proctor, Latin master, we gave him the nickname Nicotinus Rex because of his yellow fingers.
 
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