IMMORTAL HOWDEN ENDER

Inverness Royal Academy of Olde

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Close by many years ago

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The first word of the caption isn't legible, but I would imagine that it should read "High School, Inverness" because that it what the Crown School used to be - I think right up until the "Tecky" opened around 1936.

Whilst still using the Crown site, the HS used to use some classrooms at the nearby Academy and there used to be chaos with different groups moving around on different timetables. It is also said that until relatively recently, the Royal Academy timetable used to be complied in a certain way, originally for it to articulate as far as possible with the HS one but the practice continued for years after.

Edited by Charles Bannerman

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Now I do believe that is the Royal Academy cricket team from IHE's year - possibly the 1st year one of 1968-69?

Correct me if I am wrong, but I think I can identify some of them. Back row - left - Neil Spence (later father of former World Modern Pentathlon champion Mhairi), 3rd left Andy Smith (brother of author Ali Smith), 4th Billy Urquhart, 7th Fraser Kennedy.

Front row - left Robert Milne (?) (councillor Alastair Milne's son) 2nd left Davie Milroy, 4th Willie Graham, centre (captain) Hamish MacIntyre (the Dalneigh minister's son who died at an early age in a mountaineering accident), 2 along from Hamish - Jeff MacDonald (Kevin's "big" brother).

I have this ominous feeling that IHE is in there somewhere but can't spot the face. that's because when we pulled him into the prefects' room for "discipline", it was usually one of his far more commendable features that was in evidence as we set about it with a training shoe.

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Now I do believe that is the Royal Academy cricket team from IHE's year - possibly the 1st year one of 1968-69?

Correct me if I am wrong, but I think I can identify some of them. Back row - left - Neil Spence (later father of former World Modern Pentathlon champion Mhairi), 3rd left Andy Smith (brother of author Ali Smith), 4th Billy Urquhart, 7th Fraser Kennedy.

Front row - left Robert Milne (?) (councillor Alastair Milne's son) 2nd left Davie Milroy, 4th Willie Graham, centre (captain) Hamish MacIntyre (the Dalneigh minister's son who died at an early age in a mountaineering accident), 2 along from Hamish - Jeff MacDonald (Kevin's "big" brother).

I have this ominous feeling that IHE is in there somewhere but can't spot the face. that's because when we pulled him into the prefects' room for "discipline", it was usually one of his far more commendable features that was in evidence as we set about it with a training shoe.

Back row - second left, Neil Buchan (died some years ago), 7th possibly David Scrimgeour (who was a great mate of Fraser Kennedy), far right looks like Jimmy Chisholm.

Front - first left, I think that could be Bryan MacGregor (later head boy and football captain), between Hamish and Jeff is Michael ("Suds") Sutherland, on Jeff's left I think that's Laurie Chancellor, far right Gavin Meldrum.

Gavin's father was something like County Architect for Inverness-shire. Telephone callers to the Meldrum residence were sometimes bemused by Gavin answering the phone with the announcement "Ballachulish Dog Mortuary", or with the question "Do you want to buy some dirty postcards?".

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Now I do believe that is the Royal Academy cricket team from IHE's year - possibly the 1st year one of 1968-69?

Correct me if I am wrong, but I think I can identify some of them. Back row - left - Neil Spence (later father of former World Modern Pentathlon champion Mhairi), 3rd left Andy Smith (brother of author Ali Smith), 4th Billy Urquhart, 7th Fraser Kennedy.

Front row - left Robert Milne (?) (councillor Alastair Milne's son) 2nd left Davie Milroy, 4th Willie Graham, centre (captain) Hamish MacIntyre (the Dalneigh minister's son who died at an early age in a mountaineering accident), 2 along from Hamish - Jeff MacDonald (Kevin's "big" brother).

I have this ominous feeling that IHE is in there somewhere but can't spot the face. that's because when we pulled him into the prefects' room for "discipline", it was usually one of his far more commendable features that was in evidence as we set about it with a training shoe.

Back row - second left, Neil Buchan (died some years ago), 7th possibly David Scrimgeour (who was a great mate of Fraser Kennedy), far right looks like Jimmy Chisholm.

Front - first left, I think that could be Bryan MacGregor (later head boy and football captain), between Hamish and Jeff is Michael ("Suds") Sutherland, on Jeff's left I think that's Laurie Chancellor, far right Gavin Meldrum.

Gavin's father was something like County Architect for Inverness-shire. Telephone callers to the Meldrum residence were sometimes bemused by Gavin answering the phone with the announcement "Ballachulish Dog Mortuary", or with the question "Do you want to buy some dirty postcards?".

Yes, you are absolutely right. That is Bryan "Corky" MacGregor and not Robert Milne front left and I do believe that is indeed Jimmy Chisholm back right.

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I am at silly mid off - back row behind capita no with the bat - and here are some of the bullies that you mentioned.

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These are my contemporaries. Back - Malcolm Clark, Richard Hiller (Muirfield Mills), Dave Barnett, Paul MacInnes (Muirfield Mills), Ronald Stewart, Brian MacIlwraith, ???

Front - Ewan "Wee Tosh" MacKintosh, John ??? (he was quite new and I think had a nickname), David Fasken (aka Foreskin), Pete Grant, Richard Smith, Allan "Stan" MacLeod, Dave Spence, Brian Pryde.

This predominantly Fifth Year group from 1969-70 would appear to be the 2nd XV.

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IHE -why are these ladies' legs so slim.?  Was it  from running away from you or chasing you me old fella? Or  were supplies hard to find after the 2nd WW?

OOOOOOH!  I think you were a bit of a lad..:smile:

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Ian MacLean taught Physics in Room 20. His nickname was Fred since he was said to look like Fred Flintstone. He came from somewhere around Kiltarlity and was a great car enthusiast. For lunch he would often boil meat and tatties on a Bunsen burner whilst marking homework and glowering at his classes doing exercises.

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12 hours ago, Charles Bannerman said:

Ian MacLean taught Physics in Room 20. His nickname was Fred since he was said to look like Fred Flintstone. He came from somewhere around Kiltarlity and was a great car enthusiast. For lunch he would often boil meat and tatties on a Bunsen burner whilst marking homework and glowering at his classes doing exercises.

Thanks, yes it's the same one, was he always eccentric?

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4 hours ago, dougiedanger said:

Thanks, yes it's the same one, was he always eccentric?

Yes. Totally. If you happen to have been at Charleston, to where he moved possibly around 1980, this is something with which you may be familiar. I seem to recollect that he moved because he didn't want to teach in the "new" Culduthel building but in any case, Charleston was a fair bit closer to where he lived.

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3 hours ago, IMMORTAL HOWDEN ENDER said:

Note that nobody is close to Torquil ?!

:lol: None of the men anyway although I do see Chunky Hamilton immediately behind him!!! Torquil, who was the school's first ever guidance teacher :crazy:, set what I believe was a record in getting early retirement at the age of 48. I certainly remember him coming into my classroom on guidance business stinking so badly of drink of all vintages that I had to take several steps back.

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2 minutes ago, Charles Bannerman said:

Yes. Totally. If you happen to have been at Charleston, to where he moved possibly around 1980, this is something with which you may be familiar. I seem to recollect that he moved because he didn't want to teach in the "new" Culduthel building but in any case, Charleston was a fair bit closer to where he lived.

I am familiar with his work. :smile:

Similar eccentricities, including lining up outside the room for the whole class, being belted for chewing pencils, swinging on chair and other heinous crimes. This only after you had made a "deal" with him to outline the future punishment should you. Would belt you then seem remorseful.

His lunchtime routine was much as you describe. Actually had a cohort of favourite pupils, older ones, who would hang out with him.

Actually felt sorry for him, and think he is still on the go.

 

 

 

 

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On 03/11/2015 at 8:31 PM, Charles Bannerman said:

These are my contemporaries. Back - Malcolm Clark, Richard Hiller (Muirfield Mills), Dave Barnett, Paul MacInnes (Muirfield Mills), Ronald Stewart, Brian MacIlwraith, ???

Front - Ewan "Wee Tosh" MacKintosh, John ??? (he was quite new and I think had a nickname), David Fasken (aka Foreskin), Pete Grant, Richard Smith, Allan "Stan" MacLeod, Dave Spence, Brian Pryde.

This predominantly Fifth Year group from 1969-70 would appear to be the 2nd XV.

Back ??? is Jan Milne, lived in Dalneigh

Front ??? Rogerson, I think

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11 hours ago, jaggybonnet said:

Back ??? is Jan Milne, lived in Dalneigh

Front ??? Rogerson, I think

I think you may well be right JB. I now remember Jan Milne and I also think there was a boy Rogerson whom I don't remember that well, but I think he had a sister called Bronwen who was a right cracker!

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On 29/04/2015 at 11:20 AM, Charles Bannerman said:

I think what CB is trying to say is Academy = a reasonably accurate selection of the highest achievers at age 11 in addition to a few complete duffers who should never have been there. High School = middle order achievers at 11 and some genuine higher fliers who were there by choice or error, plus lower achievers from West Inverness. Millburn = lower achievers from the East side.

 

The last intakes of this nature were in 1970 and by 1980 Inverness had become fully comprehensive with Culloden and Charleston Academies added to the three older schools.

Brief observation of standards at Millburn in this broadcast:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b06j0wf3

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2 hours ago, jaggybonnet said:

Brief observation of standards at Millburn in this broadcast:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b06j0wf3

"A zoo"... interesting. At the time Sue was there - for two years before moving on to the still semi-selective Royal Academy - Millburn was in a process of transition from a Junior Secondary (with entry as described above) to a comprehensive. In fact it went through, I think, three different names - Millburn Junior Secondary, Millburn Secondary, Millburn Academy. I think they went into a bit of denial about the first two once they acquired the third, but in the early days of comprehensive education, I could imagine it being a bit of a "zoo" which it still partly was when I taught there in 1976-77.

Sue goes on to suggest that Millburn is now a good school but the reality is that however good it is, it has been over rated. Ironically, Millburn underwent a transition from Junior Secondary to a comprehensive serving by far the most affluent catchment area in Inverness, with all the advantages that brings. Other schools have the Ferry, Hilton, Smithton etc in their areas. The "worst" Millburn has had is Raigmore and a few Army kids. (Hope these socioeconomic realities of Inverness don't offend.)  Inevitably if you get clever, motivated kids through your door your exam results will be good and if these are good you will get the reputation of being a "good" school. The next stage after that is for aspirational parents to send their kids there by choice - but without realising  that the superior results they seek for them are more a feature of the catchment area, of which they are not part, than the quality of education. It's the "silk purse out of a sow's ear" delusion, further fuelled by the snobbery of people wanting their kids to be educated alongside "a better class of child".

The reality at Millburn for quite some time was that there were quite a few pretty weak departments, especially in the Sciences which were notorious. However if you get through your door kids of above average ability whose parents paper over the cracks in the teaching by employing tutors, then you will still get the kind of good results which make you a "magnet school" irrespective of the quality of education offered. With much of Millburn's catchment area lying in the highly affluent "G and T belt" (and within spitting distance of the Kingsmills and the Heathmount!!), the extent to which Millburn parents employ tutors to achieve results is a longstanding Inverness educational institution.

So in summary, the best way to be regarded as a "good" school is to be in a catchment area where you get the clever progeny of rich parents through your door.

Edited by Charles Bannerman

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Perhaps I should add that, by the same token, the High School gets a LESS good press than it deserves since its results tend to be evaluated without regard for its "difficult" catchment area and the fact that many of the aspirational middle classes of west Inverness, subscribing to that "silk purses out of sows' ears" delusion, send their kids across the river.

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