Olympian spirits at Haslingfield School

I’m sure most of our Olympic stars first developed their talents at school, so a look at what Haslingfield children in the past were doing may be of current interest.

I’ll bet few of them had their activities curtailed in the way pupils in January 1944 experienced. Eric Cole discovered sheep grazing on the Recreation Ground, so somewhat nervously opted for mixed country dancing instead. Much to his surprise, it was “Unexpectedly successful”, with the boys appearing to enjoy it. After the war, normal service was resumed. The boys continued with their football, including a home and away tie with Littleton House, Girton, which produced a 2-2 draw and a 5-2 defeat. After the visit of a netball advisor in March 1949, the school went in for the sport in a big way, and successfully. According to the log book, in the next calendar year Haslingfield girls beat Harston twice, Foxton twice and Steeple Morden, losing only to Comberton and Bassingbourn. The girls also appeared to excel at Scandinavian dancing, giving a number of demonstrations. Mr. Cole also organised Sports Days, and took Haslingfield pupils to the town sports in Cambridge. Hopefully sheep no longer grazed!


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Comments (1)



    Thank you for this piece. It was very much part of my father’s credo that schooling should develop physical and athletic accomplishments alongside those of the
    classroom. Given the 5 years of unremitting warfare, limited rations, a school run
    on minimal staff and resources, plus being Commanding Officer of the village Home Guard, father’s time was very well occupied. He reminisced on how much pleasure
    was shared by the pupils, making the most of what little they had. Competing and
    enjoying so. The Olympic flame at its brightest.
    In memory of my father, and his 36 years of service as headmaster, I would welcome the opportunity to present a memorial to the school. I’m sure you
    can reroute this to the apprppriate authorities?
    Neville James Cole


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