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Mar 23 2011

Welldon Park School 1910-1985 Celebration (Part XIII)

Part thirteen in our ongoing series on Welldon Park School…

RETIREMENTS

In March of 1955 Mr Goodhead retired. He was presented with a set of door chimes bearing a plaque duly inscribed to mark his 24 years service. For many years he had been Deputy Head, at first for Miss Davy and later for Mrs Cooper. Two years later in July 1957, Miss Stracher left, after 25 years service, to get married. Mr Goodhead was replaced as Deputy by Mr Locke who had already been on the staff for a number of years. Mr Locke is remembered by many people for his outstanding practical ability. As woodwork master he was of great service to both Infant and Junior departments making much of apparatus. He made Visual Aid apparatus not only for the School but also for the District. Sixty teachers, including both present and former colleagues, attended his retirement party in July 1967. He had served the School for 11 years.

Mrs Cooper was next to retire in July 1968 after 27 years at the School. Many former pupils, staff and members of the Education Department attended her retirement celebrations including Mr Peter Walker, then Tory shadow Transport Minister. She knew she would miss Welldon Park very much so she decided t: travel. During her first year of retirement she went to Hong Kong, Australia, New Zealand and Honolulu staying often with friends and at times with former pupils.

A month before her retirement Mrs Cooper received news from the Department Education and Science that the School was to be rebuilt. The Harrow Observer reported that a grant of £51000 had been allocated for the purpose.

A HEADMASTER

Mr Dean took over the Headship in September 1968. He is described by those who know him as a tall, gentle man. He was immediately involved in discussions about the re-building. Architects were consulted, plans drawn up and the builders began their work. It must have been a trying time for the caretaker and cleaners as there was mud everywhere. On 22 July 1969 the Harrow Observer carried the following report:

The first phase of the Welldon Park rebuilding its expected to be completed by November 30. It will consist of a classroom block and an assembly hall. The two storey block can be converted from four to two classrooms by taking out removable walls.”

Fortunately, the second stage of the project was abandoned, the old School was not demolished and we are left with our delightful old buildings which are not only full of character but also very pleasant buildings in which to educate children.

On 11 December the new buildings were inspected by Mr John Runney (Education Office) and Mr Poole (Architect). It was decided they could be put into use.

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