High Brooms Boys School – 1958 – 1965

There has recently been quite a few memories posted on the High Brooms Society facebook page looking back at a childhood spent in the High Brooms area and the school gets a regular mention, alarmingly most of these memories seem to involve harsh punishment of one sort or another, as many of us remember schools were far stricter environments back in those days than they are today!

Coincidentally I have also been sent a photo from the school to share by Gary Mewis – this picture is of class 1 back in 1965 with the the redoubtable Miss Stonestreet in charge!

High Brooms School - 1965

High Brooms School – 1965 (photo copyright – Gary Mewis)

Following my original posting about the school Tad Stone has also been in contact to supply me with some further photos of his time at the High Brooms School, as shared below, Tad has also shared a list of the names that he can remember displayed below each photo:

1958/9 with Mrs Mutton and Mr King (Copyright Tad Stone)

1958/9 with Mrs Mutton and Mr King (Copyright – Tad Stone)

From Back row (L- R)
Bob Taylor, Andrew Smart, Stuart McEwan, ?, Earnest Tompkinson, Roger Relf, Leonard Aldridge
Ronald Latter, Terry Coles, Brian Paine, John Whiterod, Bob Jeffrey, Trevor —-, Mike Stone, Mervyn Fermer
Roy Hibbert, Michael Killick, ?, Peter Sandles, David Cushman, Richard Chalklin, Charlie Lindfield, Dudley Hutson, Donald Punyer
Richard Meakin, Raymond Parker, Graham Wickham, ?, Alan Stoner, Vincent Jones, ?, Roy Cheeseman

Teachers  Mrs Mutton and Mr King (Headmaster)

School Choir with Mr Shorter - probably 1960/1 (Copyright Tad Stone)

School Choir with Mr Shorter – probably 1960/1 (Copyright – Tad Stone)

From Back row (L- R)
Mr Shorter, Brian Paine, ?, Peter Sandles, Roger Clarke, ?, ?, ?
?, ?, Andrew Trott, John Whiterod, Like Stone, Andrew Smart, Terry Coles, Bob Taylor
Vincent Jones, Bob Tickner (I think), Bob Jeffrey, Mervyn Fermer, Roger Relf, Bob Everest, Alan Stoner, Raymond Parker, Richard Meakin

He remembers competing in singing competitions against secondary schools

Last year with Mr King - 1962 (Copyright Tad Stone)

Last year with Mr King – 1962 (Copyright – Tad Stone)

From Back row (L- R)
Roy Lockey, Peter Sandles, John Whiterod, Alan Stoner, Michael Killick
Raymond Parker, Richard Meakin, Vincent Jones, Terry Coles, Mike Stone, Ian Brown, Michael —-
Trevor —–, Earnest Tomplinson, Roger Relf, Andrew Smart, Mr King, Mervyn Fermer, Charlie Lindfield, Bob Everest, Richard Chalkin

Are any of you in any of the photos, or do you recognise anyone who is or perhaps you are still in contact or living in the area? Did you attend this school and have memories to share – we would love to know!

A quick scan on Google images also bought up this fantastic photo of the school from the Friends Reunited website taken in 1958.

High Brooms Boys School - 1958 (Friends Reunited)

High Brooms Boys School – 1958 (Friends Reunited)

If you have something to contribute to this blog, or just want to let me know you are enjoying it feel free to comment below, email me at HighbroomsSociety@gmail.com or send me a message on twitter to: @HighbroomsSoc

Copyright for all images belongs to Daniel Marsh @danieljmarsh unless otherwise stated – please do not replicate or use in any form without prior permission being granted.


12 thoughts on “High Brooms Boys School – 1958 – 1965

  1. Graham Camfield

    Great photos with lots of faces I remember. I must have been in Miss Mutton’s class 1959/60.

  2. Tad (Mike) Stone

    Hi Graham

    I remember your name but not your face. Are you on any of the photos and where?

    Tad Stone

    1. Graham Camfield

      Hi Tad
      Not in any photos as yet, maybe some more will surface. I remember you also, you must have been in the year above me.

  3. Tad (Mike) Stone

    Hi Graham

    Yes, if you joined in 1959. I’ve got great memories of the school. In my second year Miss Stonestreet didn’t teach me and my form master was Mr Bennett who I think was training. Reg King was a great headmaster and someone I regard, even today, as one of the most important influences in my life.

    Do you have a picture of yourself at the school to jog my memory?


  4. Tad (Mike) Stone

    Thanks Graham

    I googled the school and found it was in “Special Measures.” Reg King, and messrs Mutton, Stonestreet, Shorter and Evans will be turning in their graves.

    High Brooms Boys was a special school where the teachers knew us and our parents and taught us accordingly. I know in my time quite a few of us went to Skinners and the Tech (me included). Quite a few went on to university and two of my era went to Oxford and Cambridge.

    I would be interested to know of other successes since 1962 when I left.

  5. Paul King

    I used to live in Nursery Road and attended in about 65, Mrs Stonestreet was my first Teacher, then Mr Shorter, Mr Gann and Mr Evans. I shared the same surname as the Mr King and the small cricket bat and I became well acquainted. When I was 35 and Mr Gann Then a retiring headteacher and Mr King even longer retired were there when needed.

    An incident had happened at the school mid 60’s which if they could remember it would result in a prosecution for a very serious matter.

    These fine gentlemen attended Maindstone Crown court without knowing the questions they would be asked and not having been in touch for many years. Their recollections were picture perfect, with the missing parts of a jigsaw in place a custodial sentence was well deserved and rightly awarded.

    The school and these teachers gave of their best and set solid foundations with good examples, many years later they were able to demonstrate such integrity that I will forever thank them. Children were safe in the care of these mentors.

    1. danieljmarsh Post author

      Hi Paul, thanks for the honesty of your post here. I would love to know the ins and outs of it but I am sure some of the other people here will know exactly what you are remembering.

      1. Paul King

        Nothing happened at the school.

        Would be interested to know what happened to some friends Nicholas Rumsey, Dean Battle, Kirk Bland, Nigel Baldock and to see some pictures from the time

  6. Gary Mewis

    Paul, interesting to read your reply. I have no idea what the serious event was, although my memories are all pretty wonderful of my time there. The boys you mention are in the photograph I shared from 1965. That was my year and they were all my classmates.
    I agree with you about all of the teachers. Mr King was a wonderful teacher and was also an inspiration to me. For a teacher there can surely be no higher reward than that.

  7. Colin England

    Hi. I attended the schools in Powder Mill Lane from age 5 (1942) to age 16 (1953). The mention of the Court case is the first I heard of this matter and I would like to know more, please add what you know. Dates would be helpful and the news paper reports can then be looked up.

    I lived in High Brooms Road and then in Salisbury Road until I moved away. I still have family in the area.

    I feel now that my time at the High Brooms Schools was wasted. I was taught nothing about the fine details of the English language or history or maths and did not know until I was grown up that Powder Mill Lane had a French Wars gun powder mill near the viaduct. Or that Powder Mill Lane had been a Neolithic Road between the forts at Ightham and Frant. I have very little memory of the junior school — except the times spent in the air-raid shelter. In the senior school the head was first Mr Bryson and then ?? who came from a school in Erith. Also Mr Jackson and Mr Snell. Some one should draw up a full list of the teachers and the church ministers etc. The Weare family also would be an interesting study. I knew Colonel Weare a bit.

    Thank to all for the memories!!

  8. Paul King

    Hello Colin,
    It is unfortunate your school recollections were not happy.
    The Court case was about child Abuse at home. Nothing to sleight the school. Have you returned to the area recently? All of the corner shops are gone, playing fields smaller or gone, the woods smaller and the dump is now a housing estate in part.


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