Gosport school reaches its half-century with visit from old pupils  

Former Peel Common School pupils at the 50th anniversary get-together
Former Peel Common School pupils at the 50th anniversary get-together
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SMILES and laughter filled their air at a nursery and infant school yesterday and pupils, parents and teachers gathered to celebrate the school’s 50th anniversary.  

Peel Common Nursery and Infant School in The Drive, Gosport, is now 50 years old - and to celebrate the school threw a party with party games, a barbecue, cake sale and more.

Former pupils and staff join current headteacher Lesley Spicer, centre left, for Peel Common Nursery and Infant School's 50th anniversary. Picture: David George

Former pupils and staff join current headteacher Lesley Spicer, centre left, for Peel Common Nursery and Infant School's 50th anniversary. Picture: David George

As part of the celebrations, former students were invited back to the school for the day.

One of those was 54-year-old Mike Blake, from Stubbington, who joined the infant school in 1969. He said: ‘It was an incredibly happy time and I only have good memories of laughter and happiness. My teacher was a lady called Miss Davies; she was very young and I remember enjoying her lessons.

‘It is good to see that the community spirit is still here today - everyone was friendly with one another back then and that is still the case today.

‘A couple of things have changed; we didn’t have as much security then, there was no gate or anything. But none of us ever ran away from school - we were having too much fun inside.’

Pupils of today, some of whom are heading up to the junior school in September, have their own fond memories. Michael Hopgood, Year R, said: ‘Playtime is the best thing in the day. We’ve been watching lots of videos today and building bridges - we do lots of fun things.’

April Stockdale, Year 2, said: ‘Maths has been my favourite subject because I like learning new things.

‘Today’s party has been good fun – the ice cream van is my favourite thing here. ‘I’m going to the junior school next year and I’m excited to go there with all my friends.’

Headteacher Lesley Spicer said: ‘It has been lovely to look into the school’s past.

‘The Year 2s have been helping us out by looking at what the school did and looked like in the past - they’ve really enjoyed that.

‘One of the main changes is that there is now a nursery here, and the junior school is separate to the infant school.

‘That decision was made early into the school’s life because there were just too many students in one place.

‘But one thing that hasn’t changed is the focus on all having fun together and the family feel of the school.

‘There are many parents who used to come to school here and it has been lovely to see everyone here again.’