James Kedian Remembers

A few personal remarks from James provide some interesting thoughts:

Curtis. Another “head case, taught you nothing but loved to give you a serious punch if you were not in a perfect line outside class.   

Geography teacher: No name. Set you a lesson and then disappeared to the Clarence pub.   

History teacher: No name.

Another rubbish teacher, all dates. I love history  but nothing to do with Xavs. One of these spent all of the time playing “pocket billiards”.   

The school uniform had to be bought at a firm in St Anns Square.The uniform was rubbish and wore out before the first year. Brown envelopes I am sure were involved. Xaverian insisted that uniform had to be bought from firm but after a while most people bought a blue blazer and fitted a Xaverian badge. (Henry Barry St Ann’s Square – ed)   I remember the Tuck shop and when I had money I enjoyed the food.   

Pop Eaton was on my”case” all through school but I found out later that he came from the same town in Ireland as my father maybe he was trying to help me.    I was a bit of a rebel at school nothing I am proud of but it was as it was.I was a thorn in Brother David ‘s side. A little christian Napoleon.I used to watch when he gave me the cane, he used to be like a force of nature as due to his small size he used to spin around in the room to get momentum before he hit you with the cane.

We fell out with each other when I was approx 15 when Pop Eaton decided he had sent me for the cane when he had not. It ended in a standoff with Brother David and Pop Eaton when I said he had made a mistake and I was not having the cane.They stood there for some minutes thinking about it and then backed off.Afterwards they told they would not enter me for my GSEs and I would have to pay for them out of own pocket. Nice people!!!  I would love to say that it ended in a a fairy tale and I collected numerous GSEs but I only collected a Maths GSE which surprised me as it was never my favorite subject so Pop Eaton may have helped. Anyway I am now 74 and I think I had a slightly better education than staying at my previous school.

James Kedian memories

I remember the tuck shop being in the main playground. That is as you came in from Thurloe St it was on the left ,next to the bicycle shed. I remember the bicycle shed, as I got a bit older I got handy at combination locks which were very popular then. I used to go in the bicycle shed and swop around  all the locks on the bikes.

 I remember the sweet shop on Wilbraham Rd I used to buy cigs  there one at a time. It got me into smoking ” grown up” I got the result a few years ago. I do not blame the shop ,times were hard in the fifties, make your living as you can. I remember going to Eire in 1956 and going into a tiny greengrocers and there was a mini bar in the shop with three pumps. I was gobsmacked!!

I spent my time at Xavs in the “threes”. I do not remember knowing the name of the prep school. I do remember altering the shower controls for the showers at the prep school. Whoever designed the school never allowed for school boys. They put the shower controls OUTSIDE the showers. People passing by turned the hot to max and listened to the screams.

Somebody in their wisdom thought It would be a good idea to concrete the playing area for the cricket. This area had fallen in to disrepair and they still used a corky ball. They also only had two pads, so you had to choose which leg to cover. I choose the wrong one and was off school for a week. Corky ball hit me in the knee. I had to make my own way home. It took me hours.

We knew which of the kids in our class came from the prep school. They were not the sharpest ones in the class. One I remember called Fay. His family had quite a few greengrocers/general stores around Manchester before the supermarkets took over (possibly the Hugh Fay Shops – ed).  I went out with my father in summer holidays, he was working at the Fay house and I was in the back garden when I saw him in the rear room. He saw me through the window but did not come out. This guy was not the sharpest  knife in the box but I am sure he would have got to the top.

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