Are you looking to catch up with a former classmate or someone you played cricket or rugby with years ago? Although the old school rolls are generally not available (many are believed to be lost), the Old Elysian’s Club has access to a number of records relating to former pupils of the school. Whilst our records are far from comprehensive we may well be able to trace information relating to a particular former students which we would be able to share. We do our best to keep our own information as accurate as possible.
Even if you don't wish to join the Old Elysians’ Club we would very much like to keep in touch with you and also put old friends in contact with you if they ask us and you give your consent.
Member or not you can provide or update your contact details (especially phone number and email address) by using the Contact Us section of the website. Alternatively you can email the Old Elysians’ Club with any queries or comments at firstname.lastname@example.org: we'd love to hear from you.
In particular, if you have any photos from your time at the school we'd love to see them. You can either scan them and send them as an email attachment or you can contact us by email with your contact details if you would like assistance with scanning: we can then return the picture to you.
If you wish to be put in touch with anyone who appears here we will happily send your email address to them if you wish.
This is also where we will put any comments from the 'Contact Us' section.
Jim Corbett (65-72)
Another Reminiscence from Don Ford 15/02/22
I do not look back at my eight years at WES in a ‘roseate glow’. Like everybody else, I had good days, bad days and ‘orrible days.
There were bullies and others who seemed to have a bent for making life miserable for their fellows. Just ‘school life’.
Members of the Teaching Staff who I would quite happily have seen disappear in a puff of smoke. I am sure that we had the odd ‘punishment fetishist’.
However, I survived to benefit from the experience as a whole.
My examination results right through to A Levels, I am sure, did not enhance the School’s reputation as a ‘pillar of academe’. I suppose, if I had spent more time in the classroom and less time at Camrose Avenue, I might have benefitted more.
Some years after I had left WES I was on leave from the MN (my National Service) and playing cricket at a rather prestigious club in south London. During a discussion, which happened to revert to schooldays, the resident Club Manager happened to say to me, ‘and where did you go to school, my boy?’
‘William Ellis’ I said. I must admit that I added the word Grammar.
All he was “F-ck, me’. You were lucky!
PS You can understand my ‘affection’ for the School.
Messages from/to Brian Pocknee (66-73) (living in Spain 15/02/22
I trust you are all keeping well, and thanks for the quick response. You
have a very good memory about my career - although the email address may
have jogged your memory! I´ve had it since my kids were small, so about
25/30 years and have never changed it.
I´m semi-retired, living in north west Spain since March 2019, but continue
to organise a dairy cow conference and some expert witness work in the UK.
Not sure if OEs know but Nick Read (66-73) died about 20 months ago. He
was an illustrious professor at Edinburgh University - mycology. (I remember Nick Read well from the CCF. Ed
I´ll scan some photos and send through.
Keep safe and well. And thanks for OE work.
Long time no see. Are you still involved in agriculture? Stephen Chadwick sent us a cricket picture I haven’t put up yet which you are in. I am happy to take any pix from any era. The tuck shop picture sounds interesting! We’re trying to bring our membership up to date a bit more but it’s not easy.
Thanks for updating your details I’ll make sure the right people get told and for their benefit I’ll say the original emsil is from Brian’s Pocknee as it might not be clear from your address!!!
Jim, thanks for last week´s email.
Not sure if interested, but may already be available, but I have a few
rugby team photos and one of the tuck shop staff from 1973!
A Letter From Don Ford February 2022
I have written this before albeit as a sort of ‘private memo’.
I believe that our present situation re membership goes back as far as 1975. Francis Lockwood certainly promoted the value of the Old Elysians and, I believe, Sydney Baxter carried on the tradition until his retirement in 1975.
During the ‘Lockwood era’ of course, there were members of staff who had been pupils at the school and the OEs had their own Notice Board outside the old Gymnasium.
1975 to 1990 was the ‘fallow period’ which led to today’s dearth of OE membership (under two particular Heads) and, only the arrival of Michael Wheale in 1988 caused this decline to be slowed down. However, the situation had become difficult to turn round and, today, we are still suffering from this historical antipathy and dramatic decline in membership.
I remember the late Tom Bryant, as a School Governor during that specific period stating that one particular Head described the OE’s as ‘elitist’. He believed it to be ‘a political statement’.
I praise wholeheartedly the Committee, and others ,in efforts to claw back into today’s society the former value. of the OEs.
I know that I am prejudiced because of my good fortune to be a beneficiary of the 1944 Butler Education Act but WES gave me ‘a damned good education’. Therefore, I am all in favour of any form of promotion for the School and former pupils.
PS You may regard this letter as an ‘open letter’.
CONTACT WITH DAVID SAWYER (46-53)
Following a request from Don Ford we have located David Howarth in Scotland. If anyone wishes to be put in touch with him please email us.
FROM Peter Robinson 58-65
I was at William Ellis from 1958 to 1965, and have very happy memories of my time there.
I still see Ian Shaw regularly, and am in touch with Max Adams; and Andy Heron and Adrian Scheps via our common Alma Mater Merton College Oxford.
If any one wants to contact me for a catch-up, I would be delighted to correspond.
FROM: Averill Wootton (STAFF- Biology)
I was a biology mistress at WES, from Sept 1967 to Dec 1970 along, with Douglas Pond and Peter Durrant, .
The School Song? `Firm as the Oak...' was what we sang then.
FROM: David Martin RE: Sterling Dlamini 72-77
I am trying to find out about a former pupil called Sterling Dlamini who I was at University with. He would have been at William Ellis I think 1972-1977? thanks
FROM: David Sawyer
I read, some years ago that the musician, writer and broadcaster Benny Green was a pupil at the 'Emergency School' at the time it had that name. also, was Agatha Clough (Biology teacher in 1950's related to Prinella Clough the artist?
If anyone has any comment to add please let us know.Ed
FROM: David Sawyer 1945-53
As a pupil between 1945-1953 I wonder if there are any connections still around that I would find of interest. The headmaster was F.W. Lockwood and the only boy of note that I remember was Freddie Titmus.
FROM: Raymond Glanville RE: His father Raymond Glanville.
He and his brothers William & Earnest attended William Ellis Endowed School
in the 1920's. I am the only son of the deceased RFG: now I am 90yrs old and trying to reconstruct my origins.
What can you tell me?
FROM: David Djanogoly 1948-54
I remember, one of the most rewarding lessons were Latin with Mr. Lockwood,
Maths Mr. Armit.
Ida Teather. The Annual School Play
Always a great pleasure !
FROM: Paul Dion
Does the Old Elysians Club still exist in any shape or form? There seems to be nothing on the website later than 2013.
Also sent to email@example.com
Well at least we've put that right! Ed.
FROM: Matthew Silver 1961-68
Looking to confirm my class from 1961, for some reason I remember many of the names from the register. My form master was Mr Lean, any help will be apreciated
FROM: John Rush
Rugby First XV 1963
How many of us are surviving?
FROM: Paul Ernest.
Dear Elysians Club
I'm an old Elysian from 1956-63
I attended the 1963 class 40th reunion at William Ellis in 2003
I've been assembling a webpage about the Witches Cauldron coffee bar in Belsize village, 1960s, where many William Ellis boys went
There is quite a bit about the school, Sidney Baxter, and Old Elysians
If you want to see what is written about William Ellis look at List of People, John Rush, Other places, Hampstead politics, William Ellis and secret service for the relevant bits
Some of it you will doubtless find scurrilous - but it reflects the view of a significant minority of students
And is undoubtedly a part of WE history
Emeritus Professor Paul Ernest BSc MSc PhD FIMA FRSA CMath ILTM
Note: I have looked at the material Paul has on his website and it presents a very different view of the school to that most of us may recall.It is of course a series of personal recollections. Those of us who remember the 'Warwick University' scandal of 1969 (I think) and various rumours about MI5 links etc will have some idea of the content. Nonetheless it is an interesting and at times amusing read. If you want to read it for yourself and perhaps engage with Paul you can find his content by following the link below. You might note that in the section on William Ellis and MI5 some of the content of the Benemy Dining Club website has been 'lifted' to provide some sort of balance. The views on Paul's website do not accord with my own but so what. Speech is free...and he has agreed willingly to engage with other Old Elysians who have different or similar views.Ed.
The Witches Cauldron...
FROM: Lawrence Wolfe
Shown in a rather abbreviated fashion is a sketch of what has happened to me since 1948 when my family and I emigrated to Texas to join family who had arrived there decades earlier. I attended William Ellis from 1947 to 1948!
After a few months in Waco we moved to Dallas where I attended High School and from which I graduated in 1948. I entered Columbia University that year and received my BA degree in 1952. Upon my graduation from Columbia I entered Yale University from which I received my Master of Fine Arts degree in 1958.
The major part of my professional career was spent in the world of magazine publishing as an art director for such publications as Fortune, Discover (Time Inc's science magazine) and Time magazine.
Following my career at Time I formed a corporate Communications company, creating annual reports and other corporate materials for such companies as Time Inc, The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, General Electric, Perrier, Associated Press to name just a few.
In retirement I authored a book, Easy Economics, that was published by Wiley and Sons and has appeared in English, two separate Chinese language editions, and one by a Thailand publisher
I married Ruth Haslam in 1959 and have two sons, Daniel George, and Kevin Winston and eight grandchildren.
When I was a student at William Ellis I lived in Edgware, where we had our playing fields, and where I attended Camrose Primary School with John Vile a fellow classmate at William Ellis.
We would often commute together taking the underground from Edgware to Camden Town, transferring to Kentish Town, then taking a bus to school. Quite a lengthy and time consuming trip each day.
I often wondered what ever happened to John and some of my other classmates, so would appreciate hearing about them if any information is available.
I shall send in a separate email a photo of the Camrose Cricket team for which John and I played and one of me as the opening batsman for Yale played against Harvard in the Spring of 1958.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Paul's photos of himself as opening bat for Yale appears in the sports section and another of him in a small section of a whole school photo from 1948 is in the general section.Ed.
FROM: Mario Anastasiadis
I attended William Ellis Grammar School from 1973 until 1980 when I then went to the University of East Anglia to study Law.
I have fond memories of my time there.
I used to play a lot of rugby at the time for the school 1st 15.
I wonder if you have any old records of the rugby we played
I look forward to hearing from you.
FROM: Paul Ernest 1956-63
(Paul Ernest) attended WE from 1956-1963 and was present at the 40 year reunion of our year in 2003 held on the WE premises
I am still very much in touch with classmates and colleagues from WE including Tony Barnett, Peter Sayers, Alan Green, Steve Moss, Philip Howe - and was in touch with others who have since died including Tony Jackson, Dave Stephens, Alan Shoobridge
As you see the friends I made lasted me a lifetime!
We are now scattered around the globe at a distance of 0 to 12000 miles from WES - are distances are 0 (TB), 60 (AG), 100 (PS), 170 (PE), 3000 (SM), 12000 (PH)
I am quite happy for Old Elysisans and friends to contact me - especially now that the Friends Reunited site no longer provides any links
Here are pictures of some of us at the time!
Oh I should have said after leaving WE I became a dustman (1963=64), security guard (1965)' computer programmer (!970-71), University Professor (Exeter Uni) 1984 to present (now emeritus)
I graduated from Sussex BSc (1973), London MSc 1974, PhD, 1985. I live in Exeter and London.
At the 40 year reunion of our year in 2003 held on the WE premises I was one of 3/4 who gave a speech about memories of WE.
Paul's pictures appear in the General Gallery. Ed.
From Arthur A Marmorstein
I attended William Ellis starting in September 1963, I was one of a few Jewish students at the time but we were certainly made to feel comfortable. We had our own services during the main school assembly prayers, and so did the catholics. The school really believed in diversity even then and my class also included at least one Moslem and one Hindu. I, and several of the other boys were children of Jewish refugees and William Ellis helped us learn more about English culture and norms.
Reading about your outstanding programme to comemmorate the holocaust, in which several aunts and uncles and great-aunts and great-uncles and their families perished made me proud to remember that I can claim an Elysian connection.
With best wishes,
Arthur A. Marmorstein
New York City
I believe Arthur had a brother who also attended WES, entering in the "M" form in 1965 along with yours truly. I think the family decamped to America in 1966. Ed.
FROM: Rob McCulloch
I sent you an e-mail about these photos but found there was no way of attaching photos so here they are
These pictures from the 1951-2 season are now living in the sports element in the galleries section of this site.Ed
FROM: Adrian Cook 65-72
We had two quadrangles in those days: Junior and Senior and during the morning break (interval on the continent) someone used to throw a carton of milk which we all used to receive for the break over the wall of the senior quad over and into the junior quad. There went on for quite some time and got all the staff and prefects into the spy, watch, wait and catch mode, spoiling their cigarette breaks for a few weeks actually.
Saul Adrian Cook
FROM: Richard Flashman
Dear Elysians’ club
Warmest Greetings from Adelaide, South Australia.
I was a student from 1952 to 1957 although I must admit I did not excel. I still have my school cap and can recall most of the school song.
Mr Baxter was the Head at the time of my leaving and I see he is featured in a you-tube clip..
I also recall swimming at the Finchley Road baths as well as sports at the school grounds at Colindale.
In addition I enjoyed the CCF, going to Norfolk and Scotland on army and RAF bases. The school had its own glider, kept at the sports field.
I was in Allcroft House but I see the house names have since changed.
I lived on Queen’s Crescent and would frequently pass the old school building on Allcroft Road.
I have enjoyed a wonderful career in the Automotive industry, in the UK, USA and in Australia and I was awarded the Order of Australia in 2000 for my service to the industry, especially for my involvement in the area of training.
I retired in 1998 and continue to have a strong involvement with the industry, both as a hobby and at the Association level.
I was delighted to find the school’s website and enjoyed reading the newsletter but was unable to access the “Recent letters” section.
Richard Flashman A.M.:FIMI, MIRTE, MIAME (Aust).
FROM: Len Street
Harold Street - dob 3 June 1884
One of my ancestors won a scholarship to the William Ellis School in 1897 and attended the school from 1897-1900. At the time the family was living in Walthamstow. I have in my possession a book prize awarded to him at Christmas 1899 which is inscribed ‘Awarded to Harold Street as a mark of honour’ and signed by the Head Master, Edward B Cumberland.
As this is an uncommon citation (unlike ‘Poetry Prize’ or ‘Mathematics Prize’) I am wondering whether it is possible to find out from the school archives why he was singled out for such a special mention. I believe he was good at sports and I would be grateful for any information you can give me about his time at the William Ellis School.
If it would be helpful for your records of the school’s alumni, I can send you a short paragraph about Harold’s subsequent career as a Manager for the London and South America Bank in Chile and in Argentina.
I look forward to hearing from you in due course
Len Street OBE
We attempted to locate more info on Harold Street but we were unsuccessful. Unless our members know better!
FROM: Trevor Freeborn
I write to inform you that Edward (Ted) Brown, 1960 - 67, died recently. He was fit and had no sign of illness. Having just completed a circular walk of Anglesey he sat down and died.
His funereal took place in York on 18th July, attended by three Old Boys.
Edward leaves a widow, Angela and two sons Stephen and Martin.
FROM: Anthony Baker
I would very much like to make contact with chaps I was at school with.
I now live in Folkestone Kent. I play golf, retired, ex Round Table and
Rotarian and served as councillor on Shepway District Council for 12 years.
I’m Anthony Baker, (contact details available to member by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Ed.)
Hoping to hear from someone,
FROM: Maureen Laycock
Sorry to have to inform you, that my partner Alan Mason, passed away on the 26th April. He was playing bowls on opening day at Blandford and had a Cardiac Arrest on the green.
Despite every effort to revive him, he passed away a few days later at Dorchester Hospital.
From Jim Parris
Hi, As an Old Elysian I was sad to hear the news about Tom Bryant today. Being at the school 1951/58 I knew Tom quite well as a senior pupil of the same house. What a great representative of a great school. He will be sorely missed by us all.
I was present at the Centenary Servuce in 1963. Can you confirm where this was held my old brain suggest St Pauls. Am I correct?
Yes and no Paul. The Centenary service was in 1962 but you are right about the location - St Pauls Cathedral