In 2013 the school celebrated its 75th anniversary. We held a special event where we dug up the time capsule and displayed its contents together with photos and memorabilia from years gone by.
The time capsule has now been buried again, with extra items chosen by the School Council.
You may also be interested in this account by Alan Arthur Rudd, a former student at the school during WWII.
Potted history of Old Buckenham High School – researched and collated by Hazel Patrickson
Many children biked to school originally. Children from Bunwell, Banham, New Buckenham and Carleton Rode were provided with school bikes if they didn’t have their own. They were also provided with bright yellow capes, leggings and caps and Mr Thrower would repair the bikes if they got damaged.
The first school bus brought children from Shropham but most children are now bused in from a wide area.
The first Headmaster was Mr Twiddy who also taught music. At the time there were only nine teachers altogether in charge of; Maths, English, science and woodwork, domestic science and handicrafts, geography, history, religious instruction, music, physical training and swimming.
School uniform was introduced in 1952 and was maroon. It became black when the school became a secondary school as opposed to an area school in 1962. At that time the uniform was:
Girls had two uniforms; The winter uniform was – white blouse, grey skirt, royal blue cardigan, white socks, black or brown shoes and either a blue, yellow, red or green tie. The summer uniform was – a striped blue and white dress and royal blue cardigan, or you could wear a skirt and blouse all year.
Boys had to wear grey or black trousers, white shirts, black or brown shoes and coloured ties as above. The also wore a black blazer with the school badge on and an optional pullover.
Townshend (Green) was named after a Norfolk farmer who was nick-named ‘Turnip Townshend’.
Coke (Yellow) was named after ‘Coke of Holkham’, another farmer.
Crome (Red) was named after the landscape artist John Crome and founder of the Norwich School of Painters.
Borrow (Blue) was named after George Henry Borrow who was a travel writer and linguist of no less than twelve different languages.
Fry (Purple) was named after Elizabeth Fry and was only created as a House in 2006.
The original school badge was designed by Mr Goody and was adapted from the coat of arms of the first owners of the Buckenham Castles, the D’Allini Family. The badge depicted a lion with three roses running across the shield. This was later changed to a buck deer and a lion next to a tree. In the last 3 years it has been redesigned by student Jake Harper and is now a shield with a laptop, sportsman, tree and the two masks depicted one in each quarter.
Here are a few past school rules:
• Nobody under any circumstances should bring matches or cigarettes to school, or to smoke at school. These greaten the risk of fire.
• Penknives and screwdrivers are not allowed at school.
• People should not run along verandahs.
• Everybody should wear school uniform. If you don’t boys should report to the Deputy Head and girls to the Senior Mistress and explain why you are not in full school uniform.
• No radios are allowed.
• If you keep coming to school without the full school uniform you are not allowed to go on school trips or to represent the school in any sports or activities or teams.
• You will be punished if you talk in assembly, you will have to sit in the front row with the first years for a week.
• Boys will salute and girls will nod when the Headmaster drives into school.
Hot school dinners have always been available. Early on the cost of a meal was 3d or 1/3d a week. In 1973 a meal cost 2 shillings and nowadays it costs £1.60. Meals in 1938 were served in the present day gym and the kitchen was in what is now the staff workroom next to the library.
School hours used to be from 9am to 12noon, then 1.30pm to 3.45pm. There were seven lessons a day and practical lessons were ‘half-day periods’.
These began in 1953 with a two day visit to Derbyshire. They then became annual visits when the whole school would go off for a week with a few teachers to places such as Somerset, Swanage, Scarborough, North Wales, Scotland and Holland.