Date Posted... Oct 10th 2021


School Archive

Octobers Past

During this month…

130 years ago in October 1891

‘It was noticed, early in the term, that the door of a certain room in the building was fiercely besieged by a clamorous crowd at certain periods of the day, which seemed to recur with peculiar regularity. It was subsequently discovered that there was established within, what is known in technical language as a ‘Tuck Shop’. There is talk already of vast sums of money which will accrue to the Games Fund in consequence of the foundation of this desirable institution. There is no doubt at any rate that it will satisfy a deep craving of the youthful heart.’

Truro College Magazine, December 1891

120 years ago in October 1901

‘The opening of this important addition to the School premises took place on Friday, October 18th. J.C. Williams, Esq., of Caerhays Castle, was asked, and readily consented, to perform that function, and Miss Williams, who accompanied him, opened the Bazaar that followed.

A gymnastic display was first given in the Gymnasium, the all proceeded to the Laboratory, which Mr Williams formally declared open. After the visitors had inspected the building, all adjourned to the Schoolroom where the Head Master presided over a large gathering.

Mr Vinter stated that when he came to the school about eighteen years ago, the chemical apparatus was put into a small cupboard. There was one boy who was fond of a few corked bottles, and he had in the school the nick-name of doctor. They had made some progress since that time. Twelve years ago a small chemical laboratory was built, and he was glad to see present one who as a boy in that old laboratory received his first instruction, and was now doing good work in connection with the Central Technical Schools. He referred to Mr Graham Martyn (applause). As time went on they found that the laboratory was altogether insufficient, and that day they had made a distinct advance. The new chemical laboratory would accommodate 24 boys, and at the present time they had 80 boys learning theoretical Chemistry. It was useless to teach theoretical Science without the practical, and those boys would now have the opportunity of studying practical Chemistry. It was not their intention to upset the ordinary curriculum of the school. They believed in giving boys up to a certain age a good general education; that was all they aimed at in the school, but side by side they thought a boy should have some scientific education for his future work.’

110 years ago in October 1911

The Debating Society’s programme

100 years ago in October 1921

‘On October 9th the sad news reached us that Sir George Smith, the Chairman of the Governors, had passed away. During a long period he was in close touch with the School and was deeply interested in every department of our school life. Besides the business meetings Sir George attended regularly all the school functions, and on one occasion he travelled from Liverpool by night in order to be present at the Speech Day. Many difficult problems had to be faced during his chairmanship, but these were successfully solved by his great ability and tact. Each year he gave a valuable scholarship to the School, and he followed with eagerness the lad’s subsequent career. On more than one occasion he was delighted to know that the winner had passed from and Elementary School through Truro College to some University. During the war no Old Boy, whose case was thought-worthy, appealed to him in vain for a recommendation for a commission. He was a keen advocate of school games, and was pleased to become Hon. Colonel of the Cadet Corps…The Magazine contains many memorable speeches delivered by Sir George on various occasions. The flag staff with its inscribed plate erected in honour of his knighthood will remind us in years to come of the great work he did for Truro College. We have indeed lost a friend and a wise administrator.’


Truro College Magazine, December 1921

90 years ago in October 1931

Biological News

A select coterie of the Truro School Biological Society were called upon to investigate the presence of a spiculigenous quadruped, in the School field, on the fourteenth day, of the month of October, A.D. 1931.

It was found in the crepuscular gloom of its domicilium with its proboscis buried in the lithosphere, and its external appendage directed towards the stratosphere. The animal possessed a pronounced strabismus in the ‘oculis dexter.’

The conclusion was that it had made a nocturnal peregrination from a neighbouring field, and in that procedure had circumgyrated the field twice. This constitutes a record for such an animal, and in consequence the members retired in solemn conclave to deliberate as to the cause of this phenomenon.

The Truronian, December 1931

80 years ago in October 1941

Air Training Corps

‘…We have been twice [to the Naval Air Station], once for a whole day at Half Term, and all Cadets who have received permission from their parents have had at least one flight. They have also had instruction on the link trainer, in firing machine guns on the range, and in the folding and use of parachutes. The C.O. of the Naval Station offered two prizes of cross-country flights for the best essays by Cadets on the subject of their first flight. These prizes have been won by W.R. Nicholson and E.W. Pritchard-Davies. Officers of the Station have lectured to us at School each Thursday on various aspects of their work.’

The Truronian, December 1941

70 years ago in October 1951

On 20 October Toad of Toad Hall was performed by the Junior Dramatic Society.

‘The boastful, expansive, exhibitionist, effusive vainglorious tenant of Toad Hall did not always remember who he was, although we should not forget the length of his part, the insufficient allocation of rehearsal time which, naturally, increased his difficulties and those of the triumvirate appointed to watch over his destiny. Any unity the play has depends upon Toad – however good the other animals may be and were – without the egregious Mr Toad their excellence would have been nullified. It is not easy to be consistently inflated – even a blunt pin will prick a balloon. No doubt with more time for digestion Mr Toad would have succeeded in never being genuinely deflated. Yet let us congratulate him on his impersonation and look forward to even greater versatility and more self-forgetfulness next time…

After a somewhat inaudible start the Mole gave us an extremely pleasing performance, while the Water-Rat obviously felt at home – had at his command a most expressive pair of paws which he usually employed to the best advantage…It is only fitting that both Mole and Water-Rat should be recognised as two of the outstanding performances of the play.

Mr Badger was gravely hampered by having his head and snout encased so that his sepulchral voice spread even more gloom and despondency whenever his ancestral fit was on him…Alfred was a delight fore and aft…

The cup presented by the Headmaster at the end of the performance to Stage-Assistant Number One should have reminded the entire audience of those who are not seen on the stage and whose destiny it is to lie forgotten on some ancient programme…their lot is to work unseen and, we hope, unheard – it is decreed that they shall be neglected, abandoned, forgotten, but without them there would be no Toad.


The Truronian, December 1951



60 years ago in October 1961

From an early 1960s prospectus

50 years ago in October 1971


‘We have been able to increase our collection of Armour throughout the year and the arrival of ‘Fred’ – a complete set of armour created much interest last term.’

Terraces, 1972

40 years ago in October 1981

The magazine Aeroplane Monthly featured an article about the school plane, The Spirit of Truro.

30 years ago in October 1991


‘…our Vice Chairman proposed the toast for Truro School past and present, and remarked on the enormous changes since he left in 1979. The school has expanded from 600 boys to 1100 boys and girls aged 3-18.

Our President and Headmaster, Barry Hobbs responded and spoke of the successes academically and on the sports field. He commented on the continued  expansion of the school with the proposal of the Performing Arts centre and opening of the Gymnasium and Pre-Prep at Treliske. The Chemistry Labs are being completely refurbished and the main school boarding houses renovated.

Derek Norris our Chairman, welcomed the guests, among them several members from Kent College Canterbury who were evacuated to Truro School from 1939-45. Mr Norris the introduced the principal guest Elizabeth Ann Malden, who gave us a delightful account of childhood memories, growing up with the boys of Truro School. We all respected Bert Willday for the positive influence he had on our lives. He inspired all those around him, including his son John and Elizabeth Ann, who like him took up teaching.’

Truro School Old Boys Association News Letter February 1992

20 years ago in October 2001

The school held a competition to celebrate National Poetry Day. The theme was ‘journeys’. This was one of the entrants:

A Lifetime at School

In Physics I have travelled the

Length, height and breadth.

In Art I have travelled through the

Portrait, collage and sketch.

In Geography I have travelled through

Valleys, mountains and countries.

In English I have travelled through

Sentences, phrases and stories.

In Maths I have travelled through

Shapes, addition and subtraction.

In Languages I have travelled through

French, English and German.

In PE I have travelled through

Pain on track and in gymnasium.

In Biology I have travelled through

Cells, tissues and organisms.

In Chemistry I have travelled through

Liquids, solids and gases.

In RE I have followed the

Footsteps of our Lord.

And in this poem I have journeyed through

A school lifetime in just 23 lines.

R.L. 1L

10 years ago in October 2011

From the Winter 2011/12 School Newsletter