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Bitter Sweet Memories Of St Cathrines Boarding School

A Memory of Almondsbury

I arrived in 1955, I was there for three years. I was not happy there, it was like a jail to me. I do recall the names of Clive Wood and Peter Adams - I do not recall any of the others. There was a girl with a birthmark on her face, her first name was Rita, I think. Do you remember a girl called Diana? she had Tourette's Syndrome.
Remember the cellar? We would all congregate there sometimes. What was that matrons name that used to watch us boys in the bathtub? I used to think she was a voyeur.
When I was there, the big thing to do was raid the pantry at midnight. Someone used to have the key. We used to take the cans of Nutmeat. It was 'ghastly' I can't remember how we ever got those cans open - we didn't have a can opener.
Does anyone remember a boy named Bill Shea ? I remember Mr Thunder, I think he was a music teacher, not sure.
I loved reading the Memories of Almondsbury on this website. What a surprise it was, when I came across the site with all the information on the school and local area. I remember cocoa nights! It was so sweet and hot and you could always go for seconds while it lasted, and television in the school office on Friday and I think Saturday nights. We used go in our pyjamas to watch TV. Very restricted programing.
Do you remember the old caretaker that used to have ulcerated legs? I think his name was Joe, he used to have a favorite boy who used to put fresh bandages around the ulcers on his legs. It was disgusting. He must have been a Diabetic I think.
The school was vegetarian if I remember correctly, and I am a vegetarian to this day due to those influences. I remember the swing on the tree, in the woods. I remember the woods, the quarry, the view of the River Seven and the Welsh hills. The train track that would go in the direction of the river and the fantasies I had of running away by getting on that train from the tracks. Do you remember the Patchway Boys? They would hide in the woods looking for trouble of any kind, fighting the boys and trying to get the girls at the school.
I remember when kids were put in the sick bay. The school policy was if a child got sick, especially with a cold they would put you on a fruit diet, an apple and orange three times a day, breakfast, lunch and dinner until you got well and you would come out of that sick room looking like you had just come out of Belson concentration camp.
Another thing I remember, was hearing about the cat walk. The adjoining passage way between the girls part of the school and the boys part of the school. Some of the kids would meet in the cat walk.
I hated the place, but have bitter sweet memories of St Cathrine's.
John Simmons.
Little Richard lover, remember? He was my favorite singer at the time - 1956

A memory shared by John Simmons , on Mar 26th, 2012.

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