Barwick House School - a Memory of Barwick.

Barwick House as shown in the photographs on this site is sadly no more although the building is still standing and is now being used as luxury apartments, this is as a result of the school (which previously occupied it) going bankrupt in 1987, the school was run by a Major Gray and his wife. I was a pupil there from September 9th 1977 to May 25th 1979 and I was glad to learn of its closure as a school although it wasn't until April 2010 that I actually learned of this development. I say that I was glad because my memories of my stay at the school are not happy ones, my memories of my time at Barwick House are of abuse and suffering and I am delighted that the school is no more and that the abusing monster who ran it is almost certainly now dead.
I am updating this entry to inform you all that Major Gray IS dead and may he rot in whatever form of hell he ended up in.
Additionally, I learned from Avon and Somerset Police that one of the teachers (I don't remember which one) is now serving life in Broadmoor for murder, he has no chance of ever being released.

A memory shared by Graeme Claridge on May 5th, 2010.
Send Graeme Claridge a message.

 Comments & Feedback

Sun Dec 30th 2018, at 5:39 am
annhinchliffe commented:
We live a mile from Barwick House. Awful reading what happened there. Don't know what to say but well done for having the courage to speak out. Good luck with police investigation.
Wed Dec 5th 2018, at 12:52 pm
Peter Sayers commented:
sorry its took so long to reply mate but omly just spotted the msg. I was there 78/81
Fri Aug 24th 2018, at 5:34 pm
Ian Gayle, I have to agree with you wholeheartedly about Peter Waddy, he was the best teacher that I ever had, science or otherwise, he was a real friend to every child whom he taught and he had our backs in times of stress.
Travis was a cunt, pure and simple but then so was Manc, even more of a cunt in my opinion, he actually encouraged that shit Hussein Kamal to attack me but hey, I got my own back the day before I left that school for good, he got what was coming to him in the form of a piece of 4x2 from the boat shed, right across his shoulders, it broke his scapula but hey, enough of that as I am not a violent man, I only acted out of revenge.
I have put my email address out there for anyone who feels the need to unload their troubles as resulting from their time at that school, one of you has taken me up on that offer, all are welcome so use it and gain comfort in the knowledge that a fellow pupil of that hell hole has your back.
Fri Aug 24th 2018, at 2:59 pm
Ian Gayle commented:
Hi Guys Ian Gayle here just got an alert so followed it up and I have to say seems a lot of old boys may not have had the same experience I had ... yes on reflection Travis was a bit on the sadistic side and maybe we should not have been undressing as much as we did in front of staff but I don't get the complaints on the "Cooler" or cells as we called it... We built it and new just how easy it was to be in there ... rules are rules... but yes I know for some it would have been hell... I read through the story of Hussien (excellent footballer and as i remember "shagger" of the pottery teacher) stabbing another boy I remember that day clearly like it was yesterday...

Whatever the school was like and some of the staff I will never forget the friends I made there nor the crazy shit we use to get up to and I have a confession to make to you all and especially Major Gray's Daughter I can on make in person... :) .. and whats with slagging off Mr Waddy... the greatest scientist of all time (except for the professor in Back to the Future)... he is solely responsible for my life long interest in photography something my son inherited as he is now doing what I really wanted to do professionally.... Graeme Claridge I remember you well ... I think we spent a lot of time climbing those fuck-off trees we had around .... and I'm sure you were in the same dorm as me....

Chin up Guy's ... shit happens!
Sun Aug 12th 2018, at 9:15 am
Allan jesson were you at midelney place. I was there 82/83. In the big dorm top floor.
Sun Aug 12th 2018, at 12:41 am
Hi my name is Lee Scutt were you at middleney or barwick cos I remember a guy at barwick similar name to you boxer if I remember it was around 82/83
Sun Aug 12th 2018, at 12:32 am
Sorry it's my mrs emails name is Lee scutt
Sun Aug 12th 2018, at 12:28 am
Hi my name is Lee Scutt I remember gary stretch from middleney I also met him again in send 1984. A funny guy joker always made me laugh send him my best wishes please.
Sun Aug 12th 2018, at 12:18 am
I was at middleney place I remember a Gavin blunden from aldershot he came from barwick to middleney he was from aldershot bullied me loads staff did fuck all let it go on for months.met up with him in 08. Long story short had my revenge on him. Kevin sinclaire met a few times during times to barwick black guy.
Sun Aug 12th 2018, at 12:09 am
I was at middleney place 82/83 and to this day at age 48 I'm still affected by my time there the bullying I was only 12 and was bullied the staff even encouraging it. So called house fathers mr sheeran a former pupil at barwick bullied me. Mrs morphee head teacher who wrote all my school reports even though she never took me for a single lesson. As for major gray the evil liar telling my mum he wasn't letting me home for summer holidays as id been naughty stripping tiles off a roof or something. Slagging my mum off in school assembly after she visited. I hope you major gray and every single member of your staff rot in hell for ever. You had a duty of care to us all but failed us. I could say so much more about the depraved regime at middleney place but I'd need a book of 500 pages.
Thu May 10th 2018, at 6:51 pm
robertellis62 commented:
Hello former pupils at Barwick House, my name is Robert Ellis and i was at the place from 75/76.
i was the first person to be locked in the cell he had built in the washroom/cloakroom. During my time there i ran away three times because of the regime. it was after being brought back after the 2nd time i was placed in the cell which the major said he had built just for me at the time. I was in it for over a week. I wasn't there long enough to recall many names, Noel Tinsley. David Fearon, Brandy are the only names that sping to mind. I remember Noel as he was the first person i saw on my arrival to the place. He was digging a hole to put up a flag pole. The major encouraged bullying and gave out ciggies for the winner of any fights.The only bright moments was canoeing and rowing. I hear the major is dead and so to his wife, but what about his daughter? She worked in the stables if i remember rightly. The punishments was cruel especially for those most vunerable. I was at one time then i learnt to fight back. Sadly i took the wrong route in life.
I still remember the major coming to the cell at nights to taunt me saying "Ellis your going to borstal" I ended in borstal a year later. He was entrusted by social services who in turn was entrusted by our parents to guide and nurture us.
God Bless you guys who've added your comments.
Tue Mar 27th 2018, at 8:56 pm
Mr. Terry was a scrawny little cunt and his wife was a vicious slapper, twice the size of her husband, she used to take pleasure in chucking stuff at the kids, she once chucked an iron at me.
Tue Mar 27th 2018, at 8:50 pm
spandoodle commented:
Hi Alan it's Kirby I was there with you I left in 1982 Mr Terry took me to Yeovil train station how's life treating you
Sun Feb 18th 2018, at 10:17 am
jandsbutten commented:
While Garry was here last week, he remembered a bunch of people.
I know most of you commenting here went to Barwick but maybe these names will mean something.

Tom - worked in the stables (his wife did the tack room
Toni? Housewife, lived in Blackwater
Major Gray (nothing more to say)
Maggie - worked in kitchens?
Craig, split left eye pupil, 'dripping eye' (lived with Tom from the stables)
Mr Johnson - housemaster
Gerry Batten
John Travis (Embassy Number 6) - works department
Mrs Marsh - Art
Mrs Foster - English
Mrs Forster - Pottery
Mrs Light - Head of education
Mrs Grundy - Geography
Mr Bruce Bond - Maths or Art, not sure.

Other 'inmates'
Darren Tristan
Mark Burrows
Neil ? - tall guy, big ears
Ian Samuelson
Charlie Reese
Big Ben

Mon Feb 12th 2018, at 10:33 pm
jandsbutten commented:
Hi guys, I live in Somerton, a few miles up the road from Midelney.
Does anyone remember Garry Stretch? Garry was there 1979 - 1984.
Garry still lives on the Isle of Wight, but right now he's staying with us. He is going through therapy and is in our area to maybe visit Midelney as part of his therapy.
My wife stumbled upon this site whilst researching for Garry.
I am writing on his behalf because reading all your posts has sent shivers through him.
He remembers many of you and would like to reach out for friendship, support or just a chat.
We would also be grateful for any further details about the Avon and Somerset enquiry and the ITV deal.
Please write to Garry via

I am sure he will respond once he knows someone wants to touch base. But in the meantime, I will forward any and all emails to him.
Garry is here in Somerton until Friday 16th February so a phone call could be arranged while he is with us, so he has good support.

I didn't go to either of these schools but I do have similar demons.
Be strong, be true, be just.
Johnny Butten
On behalf of Garry Stretch
Sat Feb 10th 2018, at 6:22 am
I think that a lot of us resorted to drugs, I smoked a lot of hash, often a quarter ounce a day, I did a lot of speed and a lot of acid as well, I even experimented with coke for a while but I preferred speed because the effect was longer lasting and it was a whole lot cheaper.
I don't do any drugs now, I haven't done so for more than 30 years but I know that some of the kids did die as a result of drugs after leaving that school, I won't name the two that I know of out of respect for them and their families but it happened, the school has a nasty legacy.
Sat Feb 10th 2018, at 6:18 am
It's strange how reading the posts here can bring back memories, albeit nasty memories but memories nonetheless.
I was just reading through some of the posts when I suddenly remembered a giant of a kid although I don't remember his name but everyone called him Sasquatch, a name which he didn't seem to mind and whilst I have been writing this post I have also remembered another kid, well two actually, Graham Martindale, he was a tiny kid and was often bullied, I liked him, he was a kind of kindred spirit and then there was another boy whose name I can't remember but everyone called him "Dripping Eye" because of a defect in one of his pupils, a cruel name which he hated but then hey, we were kids and it shames me to think that I also called him that.
Does anyone remember that really tall woman who ran the laundry? Her husband was a short arsed arsewipe, they looked ridiculous together.
Look, we are all survivors of this fucking hell hole and we have a bond of sorts as a result. If any of you want to contact me then write to me at
Sat Feb 10th 2018, at 2:35 am
pjburton1 commented:
Hi Bill yes i remember you and visiting you at your home in Tottenham with Phil.
That place definitely left some bad memories for me. Hopefully it hasn't affected you to badly.
Tue Feb 6th 2018, at 10:23 pm
blacey121 commented:
Hi Peter I remember you and Philip Atkins. Dont know if you remember me. You came to my house in tottenham
Wed Jan 3rd 2018, at 6:40 pm
pjburton1 commented:
I was at Barwick house 1974 to 1976 my name is Peter Burton.
I will always remember on one occasion when one of the kids there if i can remember right his name was Desmond Charrington was caught stealing he went into the Majors side of the house and got caught. I have never known any one take such a beaten as that kid. his arms were put on the wooden arms of a chair and beaten until his whole arms were black. I think he also had some broken ribs.A black and swollen face he was then padlocked in one of the rooms on the top floor where he stayed for weeks.
Tue Dec 26th 2017, at 7:33 pm
It would be difficult to imagine a place like that ever existing for school children.
My torment came in the form of Mr. Travers and Manc, they were total cunts and that is being insulting to cunts because they were worse than cunts. I endured being beaten several times a week, being stripped naked and left in the basement cells for days at a time and even being stabbed in the arm, I wish that I had told my father, I think that he would have killed them but alas, I didn't and he is now dead, 37 years tomorrow in fact.
Billy, it is great that we can communicate, please feel free any time. Graeme.
Tue Dec 26th 2017, at 5:47 pm
blacey121 commented:
Thank you for your support and understanding I have found life hard most of the time from being in that hell hole at such a young age (12) and living in north London (tottenham) which has always been a rough area i feel life has dealt a bad hand you would think at 59 I should be over it but like you unless you were there you wouldn't / couldn't understand I'm just pleased now I know I wasn't imagining it all . billy
Mon Dec 25th 2017, at 9:43 pm
I know exactly what you are going through. I actually sought help and found it in the form of Dr. Jaab Hamelijnck, a Dutch psychiatrist and he helped me immensely, not only with the trauma of having gone to that hell hole of a "School" but also in a diagnosis of A.D.H.D and later on, Clinical Depression with Moderate to Severe Suicidal Tendencies, all associated with my experience of that school, well all but the A.D.H.D, that's genetic.
Anyway, suffice to say that now, at 54 years of age, I have had a hard life although my wife of 20 years has been there for me during the horrors of the flashbacks and the night frights and panic attacks but I am still here, surviving when other kids that I was at that school with are now no longer with us due to suicide.
Keep strong, keep going, survive because if you do, that cunt Grey and his psychotic wife will not have broken you.
Mon Dec 25th 2017, at 9:20 pm
blacey121 commented:
Psychiatric support was never offered to me even though I needed it and to be honest still do. I'm 59 now so bit old for that sort of help damage done!! Major grey was a complete **** I remember so many things and although some sound stupid when I say things now at the time going through different ordeals they were just the tip of the ice berg!! I.e.putting trainers on instead of wellies so got beaten then made to strip to underpants and put in cooler for 3 days without food remember like it was yesterday thank you for reading this
Wed Dec 6th 2017, at 8:57 pm
blacey121; We were never there at the same time but I can relate to what you mean when you say that other people just don't understand.
I suffered a great deal at that hell hole, so much so that I needed a psychiatrist later in life to help me cope with the fallout of being there, the nightmares, the flashbacks, I still have them and at 54 years of age, I still have psychiatric care, that plus a loving wife who does understand, she must do because we have been together for 20 years and she still loves me.
If ever you feel the need to get it off of your chest then just message me and I will be happy to help if I can.
Wed Dec 6th 2017, at 8:50 pm
I don't remember your name but I would probably remember your face. I was there from Sept 77 to May 79.
Wed Dec 6th 2017, at 8:48 pm
When were you there Pete? I was there from September 77 to May 79.
Wed Dec 6th 2017, at 8:46 pm
I remember you Mark, weren't you friends with Sean Toogood?
I don't recall which dormitory you were in, I was in the one above Gray's office along with John Fox, Joe DiMouchio and Steven Friend.
Wed Dec 6th 2017, at 7:47 pm
blacey121 commented:
Hi few names from the past!! My name us billy lacey i was at Barwick house between 1970 '- 1975 what a nasty place with evil people running it! I remember getting hit many times with the snooker cue. Was nice to read comments on how bad it really was as others just don't understand how this could of happened
Sat Apr 29th 2017, at 10:07 am
Mr Waddy was a nice guy, he actually cared about the kids in that school, he helped me come to terms with problems involving Manc, Manc stood by and watched as I was given a kicking for being white, the guy was a cunt, Mr Waddy was extremely understanding and offered very good advice which resulted in me kicking the shit out of Hussein Kamal the day before I left that school.
The art teacher? When I was there she was a horny brunette with a white Toyota Celica GT or it could have been a white MGB GT, I honestly can't remember.
Thu Apr 27th 2017, at 8:50 pm
garygrant227 commented:
The only nice one was the art teacher help me so much to get out of there
Thu Apr 27th 2017, at 8:50 pm
garygrant227 commented:
The only nice one was the art teacher help me so much to get out of there
Thu Apr 27th 2017, at 8:50 pm
garygrant227 commented:
The only nice one was the art teacher help me so much to get out of there
Thu Apr 27th 2017, at 8:50 pm
garygrant227 commented:
The only nice one was the art teacher help me so much to get out of there
Thu Apr 27th 2017, at 8:50 pm
garygrant227 commented:
The only nice one was the art teacher help me so much to get out of there
Thu Apr 27th 2017, at 8:50 pm
garygrant227 commented:
The only nice one was the art teacher help me so much to get out of there
Thu Apr 27th 2017, at 8:50 pm
garygrant227 commented:
The only nice one was the art teacher help me so much to get out of there
Thu Apr 27th 2017, at 8:43 pm
garygrant227 commented:
I am looking for Gary bray I know that he was from Aldershot we went through shit in the hands of Kevin sinclare . I have reported to police but not heard anything . When I complained at the shcool about abuse they locked me up and made me fight him in that yard
Fri Oct 28th 2016, at 9:48 pm
hhove commented:
F-ing place.i was put in them cells in the basement many times in the Pitch black,hands tied with cable ties.nose broken my so called house father.hope they rot in hell .

Sat Aug 6th 2016, at 12:37 pm
Major Gray is DEAD, so is his obnoxious wife and most of the vicious bastards who worked there. One of the staff, I don't recall his name but I was told by a WPC at Avon and Somerset Police who was investigating the school, she told me that one of the staff is serving life without parole for multiple murder, he is in Broadmoor.
I am in touch with a TV reporter from ITV who is doing an investigative piece about the school, his name is Ken Goodwin and his email address is
Fri Jul 29th 2016, at 4:01 pm
peterh996 commented:
Well...there are some names from the past. For those of you who were there we helped build the the washroom next to the boot racks as I remember. Standing outside in the freezing cold waiting for the evening hot drink before being locked up for the night. 2 on each hand and two on the arse...I'm going to give you the stick!! and I can see the old man to this day!! If there is ever justice I hope he gets his in this life or the next
Wed Feb 17th 2016, at 8:03 pm
steven.bilsby commented:
Hi mate. I was there. It was hard going I hope all that dumb-ass wrong all dead and buried. I am a hard man now.f.t.w.
Sat Oct 10th 2015, at 3:39 pm
For the benefit of anyone who cares I would like to say that I have been in contact with Avon and Somerset Police with regard to their investigation into the happenings at Barwick House and although it is early days and things are moving along very slowly, things ARE moving along and I am confident that if anyone who is guilty of partaking in the abuse that was metered out at Barwick House is still alive then they will be tracked down and brought to justice.
Please don't give up in the search for justice if you suffered as I did along with many others, Justice will be served.
Thu May 28th 2015, at 10:21 pm
a.jessen commented:
Hi all that went to barwick ,I was there from 1978 to 1983, my name is Allan Jesson some might remember me others wont, would like any one who was there in them years to get back to me ,, many thanks , al
Sat Mar 21st 2015, at 12:15 am
steven.bilsby commented:
Hi Peter I remember we sleep in the same room for a while. Time were hard .But we big and better men now. F.t.w.

Fri Mar 20th 2015, at 11:38 pm
steven.bilsby commented:
Hi Steve bilsby times were funcking hard but I hope you are well now and things are going good for you now. maybe We could go for a couple of beers and piss on major grey grave.and have a laugh. Because we are better man now. F.t.w.

Mon Mar 16th 2015, at 7:09 pm
Peter Sayers commented:
I remember the school with as much regret as everyone else who had to endure their childhood at this so called school. if its of any interest to anyone the Avon and Somerset police are now starting a criminal enquiry to how we were treated as children whist in the care of this so called school. I also remember the CELLS and was subjected to them on 2 occasions one of which was for an entire weekend. where afterwards I was returned to Midney Place the sister school to Barwick house. I hope that the more people that come forward the more likely is that something will good may come out of this. this SCHOOL almost certainly changed the courses of all our lives. I to have rebelled against authority and have never been able to hold a job down for any length of time resulting in me turning to drugs to cope with life. Peter Sayers
Wed Jan 28th 2015, at 4:47 pm
kwakakai commented:
i remember you dennis and grahame and steve russel all i can remember is the torrent of abuse giving by the tyrants that ran the place not to mention the so called house masters .looking back have to say it prob made me rebel against authority even more !! you might remeber me may name was mark hughes me and steve russel both came from the isle of wight
Tue Dec 9th 2014, at 11:21 am
steven.bilsby commented:
Hi Dennis I remember all the sh.. hard times we got into I hope you are doing well now and you are better for it .all the best steven .Ftw. .
Tue Dec 9th 2014, at 11:15 am
steven.bilsby commented:
Sun Oct 5th 2014, at 9:37 pm
steven.bilsby commented:
Hi my name is Steven b.I went to the school in 1970 1979 it was funcking hard but I am a butter man now and I now hard it was for all off us . Ftw
Tue Sep 9th 2014, at 7:42 pm
dennisdungey commented:
I remember you Graham you where you were there with me robin gillibrand Steve Russell .I did not get bullied there I know you went through a hard time.I got the cane of major grey and got sent to the cells a few times and put in tethe frezzer cell .iI got fostered by Peggy and left when I was 16 and a half
Tue Sep 9th 2014, at 7:38 pm
dennisdungey commented:
Tue Sep 9th 2014, at 7:37 pm
dennisdungey commented:

Add your comment

You must be signed-in to your Frith account to post a comment.

or Register to post a Comment.

Sparked a Memory for you?

If this has sparked a memory, why not share it here?

Tips & Ideas

Not sure what to write? It's easy - just think of an important place in your life and ask yourself:

  • How does it feature in your personal history?
  • What are your best memories of this place?
  • How has it changed over the years?
  • How does it feel, seeing these places again?
  • Do you remember stories about the community, its history and people?

This week's Places

Here are some of the places people are talking about in our Share Your Memories community this week:

...and hundreds more! Enjoy browsing more recent contributions now.