Back to School

 Bourne Abbey C of E Primary Academy in Bourne, recently welcomed 87 year old, former pupil, Robin Garfoot when he came back to visit his former school.  Mr Garfoot was one of our earliest pupils at Bourne Council School, as it was known then, on 29th August 1933 when he started at the age of 4 and a half.

Our 139 year old school was founded in 1874 by a board of five members who had been created in Bourne and their first task was to begin the construction of the elementary premises in Star Lane which is now Abbey Road.  The Star Lane Board School, as it was then known, cost £3,727 to build and was opened in July 1877 when it became the main centre for elementary education in the town, superseding the old National School built in 1829 on North Street whose 140 pupils joined our school in 1903.

Mr Garfoot, who was joined by his son and daughter-in-law, shared lots of interesting tales about his life at the school during 1933 to 1940 when he joined Bourne Senior School on the same site.  Reminiscing how childhood was an adventure, he specifically remembered evacuee children coming to the school from Hull, seeing the old Bourne railway line from his classroom window, a nature walk on Manning Road and being chased, whilst on his bike, down the road by a ‘doodlebug’, which actually landed on the Grimsthorpe Estate.

During the visit two pupils from year 6 and the ICT Manager, Mrs Christine Rice, who has been collating and digitizing the school’s archive material, was able to show Mr Garfoot his entry in the Admissions Register.   We were able to share other records from that era including an entry in the Headmaster’s Log for September 7th 1939 which detailed the action to be taken in the event of an air raid – local children were to run home, while children who lived further away would go into the field opposite the school with the teaching staff until the all clear was sounded.

Mr Garfoot later joined the Royal Air Force where he had the chance to visit many exciting places and continue his adventurous life.

Mrs Rice said “We loved having the opportunity to show Mr Garfoot around his old school and would like to thank him for taking the time to come and visit.  Current pupils are also able to benefit from our archive records – particularly Year 5 when they learn about the Victorians and Year 6 during their World War 2 and evacuees’ project.

If anyone would like to learn more about the history of the school we have some resources on this website use the links About Us > History.  We would also be very pleased to receive contributions of school photographs and documents for our collection from past pupils which, with permission, can be used on our school website for the school and the wider community to see.