Ickenham High School

Ickenham High School | Eleanor Grove Ickenham (in effect)

(Which stood until being knocked down in the early 1960's on what is now Eleanor Grove and environs)

Ickenham High School for Girls

Ickenham High School/-

Intro from Anna Wynne (Nee Anne Davies)My sister Janet Davies and I went to Ickenham High School for girls. Ickenham High School for girls was a private school for girls from 5 or 6 to at least 11.  My sister left there at 11 but I'm not sure if she was in the top class.  I'm afraid I don't know how many pupils there were.  The building is sadly now demolished, and houses built on the land.
I used to go to school by the 223 bus by myself.  The fare was a halfpenny, for which I was given a tan-coloured paper ticket.  The 1d ticket, on the other hand, was white and one day I bought one of those on my journey home.  When I got off the bus outside the Orchard Hotel, the bus conductor spoke to me severely for wasting my parents' money...This must have been in around 1951 or so.
Although we lived in Ruislip, my mother was, frankly, a snob and wanted us to go to private school, which Ickenham High School was.  The headmistress was Miss Howard; the first class teacher was Mrs Tucker, the second class Mrs Webster.  I learnt to read in Mrs Tucker's class.  She was rather short and I remember her stretching on tiptoes to light the gas mantle.  There was a sweeping staircase up to our classroom, and all pupils had to stand still to one side of the stairs if a member of staff was walking up.  In retrospect, this must have been very daunting with all those eyes following.
We were also taught to sew - hemming a piece of yellow cloth in dark green, the clearer to see the size of ones stitches.  As far as learning to be ladylike was concerned, we had to pick all the dandelions on the front lawn, collecting them in our skirts.  We also had to pick up the straws dropped in the playground from our daily milk bottles.  Neither the arts of ladies!  The milk was delivered in a cart pulled by a shire horse.  There was a sports day, as I remember vividly, coming last in the sack-race because I was too law abiding to copy the girls who put their toes in the corners. 
The uniform was navy with a lilac blouse and summer cotton dress. 
I left when I was eight to go to Bishop Winnington but my sister stayed on until she was eleven. I don't think we were the only girls from Ruislip who went there, but details have failed me now.

Ickenham High School/-

I attended Ickenham High School from January 1939 until Spring of 1944. They took pupils from aged 4 through Matriculation or School Certificate. I lived in Ruislip and used to cycle to the school. Many pupil lived in Ruislip. If it was very bad weather then I would take the 223 bus from Ruislip outside the Rivoli cinema. There was a shortage of teachers during the war but I do remember Mrs. Tucker, Miss Dean, Mrs. Rutherford (very strict) and Miss Howard the principal taught math. I hated that.


My Mother Avis Allinson was there until Christmas 1951, she remembers Jackie Mawson who lived nearby in Eastcote. Other friends were Annette L'Mon, Stella Bugler also from Eastcote.

Then moved to Ruislip.

 I went to Ickenham High  in September 1939 and left in summer 1943, when I was 16.   It was not a primary school at that time.
The main school was in the fine old Georgian house, there was also a pavilion where we had morning assembly and which accommodated some of the junior classes, as I recall.
The driveway had beautiful old chestnut trees. There was a large playing field and tennis courts;  a donkey lived in a corner of the field. We played hockey, cricket, tennis and netball, and the younger girls played rounders.

There were four 'houses' - Nelson, Drake, Raleigh and, I think, Shackleton.    

We had no sewing class  but learned Latin.  

Mrs Rutherford was my favourite teacher, she was strict but had a good sense of humour and would sometimes bring us coconut ice.   She also took us for hockey and I can remember her running up and down the field in her Wellington Boots, exhorting us to 'stay on the ball'.    Some years after I left I heard that she was ill, I believe she may have had a stroke.   When I went to England on a visit from Canada in 1967 with my children, I happened to meet her with her husband at some forgotten event. She was in a wheel chair and didn't remember me at all. When I heard that she had died I wrote to her husband, who told me that the school had been demolished, the trees cut down and a housing development built on the playing field. 
June (Seal) Paterson

 It was my mother's express wish I went to Ickenham High School in 1957, which provided Private Education for girls, that she wanted me to have, after failing the eleven plus twice, and not getting to Grammar School. The Principal was Miss Howard, remembered for her upright manner, and beautiful snowy-white hair. A figure of authority, obeyed at all times, but extremely pleasant to me whilst in her school.

My favourite teacher was Mrs Rutherford, strict, but always kind and fair, as well as multi-talented. She was disabled when walking (I never knew why) but accepted 'as she was'. She taught English Language and Literature, Geography (which was only UK and North America) and Maths (i.e. Arithmetic Algebra, Geometry Trigonometry...and Logarithms...who can survive without those?

School houses were Raleigh, Nelson and Drake - green red and yellow - and coloured bands were worn on Sports Days to show allegiance. I was in Raleigh, and loved beanbag team games, as well as hockey, cricket and rounders. I didn't like tennis or running, although we had ample private grounds and courts available for use. The quirky things done on Sports Days included the slow-bicycle race (...last one over the line won!..) and throwing the cricket ball, both my favourites!

The awful-tasting/smelly dinners were eaten off equally smelly oilcloth table coverings, spread over desks in classrooms. Every Friday afternoon we had to pick up litter in the grounds (which I hated) and since then litter-louts have always been my pet hate!
We had smelly gas lamps throughout the school, and only three horrible, cold and awful outside toilets to serve everyone, but we managed. I remember Mrs Webster, who was tough, and Mrs Fennimore who 'played' the piano for assembly, and we all had to 'march' into a large outdoor wooden building for that every day! Miss Howard (otherwise Mrs. Rose) had a daughter, Mrs. Keys who taught Art in my time!

Tho' Health and Safety didn't exist then, and facilities were Spartan, we survived, none the worse. It's a shame, though, the beautiful Georgian house no longer exists. It was fun reading your site.

Susan Blocksidge

Ickenham High School/-

 I was interested to read in Susan Blocksigde's memories of Ickenham High, that Miss Howard's daughter, Mrs Keys, taught art at the school when she was there. Anne Rose, as she was then, was a pupil at the school when I was there and is in the front of the small photo at the top of the page.
I remember she was very good at art. She left Ickenham while I was still there and was sent to another school, St. Paul's I believe.
June Paterson

 Judith Taws and Barbara Taws were both at Ickenham High School.

I am Barbara, I had friends, Hillary Shears and Paula James, in 1962
Mrs Rutherford was my class teacher. Mrs Fennimore did maths and music.
Miss Rose was the Head Mistress.
Mr Galan? was the cook, gardener and always had a runny nose.
We played hockey, tennis and rounder's.
We read Lady Chatterley's Lover in the bike shed.
The playing field had horses grazing on it, Miss Rose got paid for that.

I would love to hear from Hillary, she lived in Ruislip.

Barbara Taws

 I was at the school between 1946 and 1951 approx.  I can remember all the teachers who are mentioned especially Mrs Rutherford and how disabled she was but very kind.  Does anyone remember Miss Wheatly (not sure of spelling) the Latin teacher.  We were all so unkind to her and really messed around in her class.  She always wore black with her hair tied back.  I can remember being in trouble and having to stand outside Miss Rose door and how scared I was.  My best friends were Maureen Marchant and Maureen Brown- where are you now?  I also remember Jennifer Mason, Brenda Walker and Sally Barton and many others by their first names.  They were happy days, not sure if I learnt a lot.  At 16 I was taken away and sent to a commercial college to learn shorthand and typing.  What date did the school close?
Julia Slade (nee Fisher)

I attended this school from around 1943 to 1946, it was a fantastic school and I enjoyed every day. The house and grounds were lovely so much space for sports...hockey, netball -a lovely hall full of gymnastic equipment. The long drive full of rhododendrons was memorable. My favourite teacher was my form teacher Mrs Muncaster who taught history and literature. The sight of a young male window cleaner was often a cause for excitement among the girls.

I loved the navy and lilac uniform but often my tie was round the side of my neck having caught the trolley bus from Hillingdon to Uxbridge and then the underground to Ickenham (three stops) and running the last leg ...a good distance for a youngster. I remember if the train was fairly empty we used to see how far we could swing from handle to handle down the carriage without touching the ground.

There was a little wooded copse near the school...often a number of us would venture there at lunch time as there was a little stream where we used to recite and perform the Lady of Shallot the emphasis of drama in the school helped avoid the detention for being late after lunch...but not always.

Val Cunning (nee Bungey)

Really interested to read about pupils of Ickenham High School. My name was Angela Southgate and both myself and my sister Gloria were there from about 1955 to 1959. I remember Miss Howard very well. We lived on Ruislip and my father used to take us every day. I remember the drive up to the beautiful house. Such a shame it has been pulled down. Does anybody remember the dark changing rooms round at the back of the house? Also there was a Mrs Fennimore whose daughter Lynne was in my class.
I was very young but remember quite a bit.

Angela Martin. b 1947 now living in Cornwall.

I know that the school headmistress miss Howard/rose is my great grandma because of the stories my grandma has told me. My last name is rose and miss Howard is on my fathers side of the family. My Grandma remembers that miss Howard had a son (who my grandma later married) called Fredrick who when his mother was on holiday accidentally burnt down a lovely tall bush with mauve flowers that was in front of the school. Miss Keyes (Anne Rose) is my fathers aunt and she married a Alexander Cavanacore Keyes and had a son called Shaun who was my fathers cousin. Apparently the school was knocked down and 101 houses were built on the land.

Maddy Rose

I have very clear memories of Ickenham High School. And have one really good photo of sports day 1948 or 1949. However I was a boy in the most Junior section until I contracted Polio from Gerards Cross swimming baths.

I assume we were a mixed "Pre-Prep" type of class, and I'm guessing that boys would have had to leave at age seven. Our family lived in Swakelys road, and we kept the local chimney sweep's horse in our field. I remember the BEA Viking crash. My two elder brothers got to the scene early on. My eldest brother made us gloves out of the Kapok insulation, and kept one of the 'Landing Plates' ( small charts ) from the cockpit.

Also in about 1948 we got reported by a neighbour for keeping chickens without a licence. Mrs Tucker was our teacher. When not learning to read and write we did 'Unravelling'. Each pupil was given a square of material, and we then would unravel until it was merely a pile of cotton threads. I really enjoyed that. My most enduring memory is of being rather spoilt by the much older girls at playtime. Must have been their inbuilt and nurturing female instincts I suppose. I never had sisters, so it was a happy compensation, and I was sad once recovered from Polio sufficiently, to continue at an all boys school…..

Richard Fisher

My maiden name was Pat Woldnik. I attended from 1954 to 1957. I had my first year with various teachers in a classroom at the top floor of the main building. My next two years were in the portable building. My best friend was Anne Partington, not sure if that is the correct spelling I remember she had a brother called Peter. Another girl was called Hazel. I have an old class picture of 1957. I had put all the first names on the back. Would like to know if anyone remembers me as of course I was the odd one from Canada. Many fond memories of my time there.

Pat Woldnik
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