Readers' letters - August 2: Nostalgia

Thanks Frank, for all the memories

Friday, 3rd August 2018, 5:24 pm
Updated Friday, 3rd August 2018, 6:28 pm
Photo shows the mother of Eric Whiteside, a master at Hutton Grammar School, with Mrs Schofield, outside the butchers' at Wellington Road, Ashton, in the 1940s. Courtesy of Frank Schofield

I was interested to read Frank Schofield’s letter (Wellington Road Memories, LP Letters, July 31) concerning Wellington Road, Preston, and the photo which showed the mother of Eric Whiteside, a master at Hutton Grammar School (pictured with Mr Schofield’s mother).

Eric was affectionately given, along with his colleague Mr Whitworth, the sobriquet ‘Daddy’ by pupils.

During my time there, it was Harry Dodd who was head of music. Daddy Whiteside taught me English, if I recall.

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He was also a good magician belonging, I believe, to the Preston Magic Circle. A favourite, er, trick, from his pupils was to get him to do one of his tricks during a lesson. He usually fell for it, but he did get our attention for the rest of the lesson.

He was very good at tickling the ivories, both on the piano and Assembly Hall organ. Indeed, during assemblies, he was not averse to deliberately hitting the wrong note, a feature of the late, great Les Dawson’s pianoforte repertoire, but much to the annoyance of the headmaster (actually two during my time at HGS) who would glare at him with a “Oh no, not again!” look. While Harry Dodd conducted the Christmas concerts, there was Eric playing a lead role on the piano.

There were quite a few characters who taught at HGS, ranging from the inspirational masters to the quite frankly nasty and loathsome. In a rather strange way, the latter proved inspirational to me when I entered the teaching profession, for I vowed never to be like him.

Talking of nasty, one (to me) rather cruel incident involved some prefects (who should have known better) manhandling Daddy Whiteside’s Bubble Car to jam it between two trees on the lawn between the caretaker’s cottage and the Art Block.

Quite what Eric made of such a sight was never revealed. Oh, and one such prefect was my brother.

He also became a teacher.

Hmm, wonder why he never had a Bubble Car?

As you will gather, Daddy Whiteside was one of those masters who I well remember with fondness. So thanks, Frank, for letting me relive some of my memories again.

An Old Huttonian

foreign aid

Keep aid for emergencies

Regrettably, there have been many disasters recently and I wonder if a change in thinking may be appropriate.

As I understand it, our foreign aid policy hinges on a percentage of GDP.

If we got an annual breakdown of where the money goes – to despotic leaders, corrupt political personnel et al – I’m sure many a decent British citizen would shed a tear in anger.

Surely if a figure similar to the total current payouts were held in ‘a pot’, then rapid payouts could be made to assist the likes of financing help to:

n For experienced divers to go to Thailand in the rescue of the football team trapped in a cave.

n Villagers left homeless in South Eastern Laos when the hydroelectric dam collapsed.

n Assist in combating the devastating forest fires that raged through seaside resorts near the Greek capital of Athens.

Surely help like this is more important than a stop smoking programme in some far-flung country?

It wouldn’t matter if the pot wasn’t totally used up, it is the availability that matters most.

David H Rhodes

Address supplied

BREXIT

Cause for optimism

Re: Geoff Hewitt’s letter (LP Letters, July 30). I would like to thank Mr Hewitt for pointing out to me and my fellow correspondents that the British fishing industry has indeed suffered curtailments after Britain joined the EU.

I followed this up by asking a question on the internet: What damage has the EU done to the British Fishing Industry?

The i News has produced a comprehensive report, ‘warts and all’, which does give rise to optimism that this issue can be resolved fairly since the glaring shortcoming, for example, throwing tons and tons of dead fish back into the water because they don’t conform to the regulations, are being dealt with.

It also stated that UK fish product exports to the EU are on the up and there are profits.

Difficult as it may have been for the British fishing industry, is it worth ditching all the other benefits of belonging to the European Union for one branch of industry that is going through a difficult patch, but is resilient enough to survive?

JOH Voges

via email

city centre

Were all these drivers asked?

You report that a UCLan spokesman said their approach had been to consult with all interested parties about making Adelphi Square a shared space, pictured (LP July 26).

Adelphi Square is used by a lot of traffic.

It is on the signposted route from Garstang Road (A6) to Liverpool Road (A59).

I wonder how many of those drivers they consulted, and how many thought it was a good idea?

Stephen Palmer

Penwortham

politics

Labour MPs as split as Tories

Does anyone know what Labour’s Brexit policy is?

I’m none the wiser.

All I do know is that there are MPs rebelling against Jeremy Corbyn and they appear just as split as the Tories.

Andrew Mercer

Address supplied