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Manor House Convent School

A Memory of Brigg

The photograph of Bigby Street in the Collection prompted these memories as the building on the near left is the front of the School.
As a boarder at the Manor House Convent School there are many memories.  
The pleasure of listening to the bell ringing practice from the church opposite my dormatory window and wondering if any of the bells were founded at Taylor's in my home town of Loughborough.  
The Saturday or Sunday afternoon walks along the bank of the River Ancholme and the sweet smell of the Spring's Jam Factory as we passed.  
The games of hockey and tennis in the grounds behind the school.  At this time of the year the beds of snowdrops alongside the path to the hockey field.  
The production of Midsummer Night's Dream in the grounds of the School.
The building itself and its history, especially the front staircase that we were forbidden to use.  Our classroom when we were in the Sixth Form was at the front of the building and I had the privelege of sleeping alone then in the Sixth Form Common Room next to the Staff Room. My bed was a fold up bed that became a cupboard during the day.  
The films that we had on Friday evening. one of the teachers in charge. An educational film and a feature film. One particular memory of Pride And Prejudice with Greer Garson as Elizabeth Bennet.   
We went to church next to the convent, a small building, accessed from a drive way from Bigby Street.  
We didn't have much opportunity to explore the town.  I remember the traffic rumbling passt the school and heavy lorries blacking out the windows briefly as they passed.  The Angel Hotel 'Angel' always held a fascination for me.  Inn signs have always been an interesting form of art.
Once a year there was a Speaking Festival at the Town Hall and we always took part in the Choral Speaking Competitions, always with some success!  Once we went to see the Mikado that the local Operatic Society were performing. Our P E Teacher was Katisha and our English teacher was one of the Three Little Maids.
During the Summer, just occasionally, we went by bus to Elsham Hall.  The house and grounds were in a sad state of neglect but we had the freedom to roam for a few hours and there was always the adventure of looking through the windows that we could reach to look inside, everywhere was a sad reflection of its former glory. There was a huge grove of Bamboo great for making paths through.  Because the bamboo was much taller than us it was like a maze of our own making.  There was the opportunity too to watch wild life frogs and tadpoles in the lake and birds of many kinds.  I happened across a wrens nest on one occasion and spent most of the afternoon watching the parents come and go feeding their brood, hoping that no one else would find my hide away.  I was very reluctant to leave.
School uniform was very strictly adhered to.  Even on Sundays!  We did have a relaxation of the dress code on Saturday but dress was all approved by the Nuns.  It did make life easy, there was no wondering what to wear!  
Our hockey teams played some matches against local ladies teams, as well as other schools.  We were excused the Saturday walk if we had a match!
School work does figure quite highly in my memories.  Classes were quite small and discipline was strict and the cane was not unheard of!  O'Levels and A'Levels for all who were capable of achieving pass marks.  Some pupils did Secretarial Exams, typing, shorthand and bookkeeping.  Was this unusual for the time?  I don't know.
At the end of the School Year came the day for packing up all our possessions.  The cases were laid out in a line along the top corridor and one by one they were all packed ready for parents to collect or to be transported to the Railway Station.  I nearly always travelled by train.  It seemed quite a long walk to the Station and bleak waiting for the train.

A memory shared by E R Morris , on Feb 24th, 2007.

Comments & feedback

Fri Nov 7th 2014, at 12:35 pm

monica.cooper commented:

What a lovely memory of your time at the Manor House Convent. It does so much remind me of my days as a weekly boarder at the Convent School in 1952 and 1953. At the little church we attended Benediction, Mass and Stations of the Cross at Easter although I am not a Catholic. We took walks around the paths in the garden and played tennis the in the summer. We entered Scunthorpe Musical Festival for two part song. Sister Mary Ethelburger the headmistress gave us a pep talk and told to win it and bring the shield back - and we did ! Fond memories !

Fri Jun 10th 2016, at 7:17 am

melvinkent commented:

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