Choirboys on way to crown Rose Queen of Purbrook

Some of the children from the 4th year class at the old Wicor Junior School, Portchester, in 1952
Some of the children from the 4th year class at the old Wicor Junior School, Portchester, in 1952
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THIS WEEK IN 1975: Props consortium could save groups

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Two pictures today from Derek Petrie, of Malvern Avenue, Fareham, which should bring back many memories for those concerned.

On the right we have the 4th year junior class at the old Wicor Junior School, Portchester, in 1952.

While on the facing page is a guides’ company from Paulsgrove, Portsmouth, taken about 1955 which Derek believes was either the 4th Paulsgrove or 4th Portsmouth group.

If you feature in either do get in touch.

Meanwhile, at the bottom of the page, and also from about 1955, we see the boys from the choir at St John’s Church, Purbrook, on their way to the crowning of the village Rose Queen at the home of a Mr Gauntlet.

Peter Parker sent me the picture and, apart from him, other names he can recall are David Riggs, Alan Bailey and Roger Rideout.

Earlier this year Peter organised a successful reunion of Purbrook’s children of the 1950s and now he’s putting together another.

He says: ‘Since our last get together back in June the word has spread and more people who lived or went to school in Purbrook back in the 1950s have been in touch.

‘Our meeting in June attracted 30-35 people so there was lots of hilarious banter, but, of course, there was also the sad side, memories of lots of friends no longer with us.’

The next reunion is scheduled for 1.30pm on Sunday, October 20 at The Woodman pub, Purbrook.

And Clare Ash’s picture of St Jude’s School, Marmion Road, Southsea, which she took in 1970 (below, left), has sparked lots of memories from you.

The latest come from Christopher Wilshere, who lives in London but has followed the stories on

He went to St Jude’s from 1950 to 1953 when he joined the Prep Department at St John’s College.

He says: ‘I was in the classroom with the skylights. My three teachers were Miss Drake, Mrs Parrish and Mrs Lucas.

‘I had two good friends, Kenneth Bailey from Broad Street, Old Portsmouth, and Derek Cannon from Elphinstone Road (where are they now?).

‘One clear memory is of February 6, 1952, when it was announced the King had died and we were all sent home. That would be unlikely now.

Christopher adds: ‘In Marmion Road there was a bakers, Smith and Vospers which sold iced buns for a 1/2d; Brewers the coffee merchants which also doubled as a Post Office, which was odd; and Pinks the grocers.

‘In my time it was very much an 11-plus exam factory, hoping to get as many as possible into the grammar school or Portsmouth High, and was very successful.’