Archive for ‘School & College Stories’

May 27th, 2015

The Witness

Tara is asked to help Matron resolve a delicate situation.

By Tara Patterson

It was nearly the end of the 2015 exam season. Six weeks of Sixth form and GCSE Examinations had been intense and stressful not only for the pupils of Queen Anne’s Boarding School,  Ambleside, but for all the staff too, especially 35 year old Tara Patterson who had been the main Examination Invigilator.

Tara awoke late on this June Tuesday morning. There were no time-tabled exams today and only two more to oversee before she must leave Queen Anne’s again and return to her normal life on the family farm in Lincolnshire. Tara had decided to make the most of this extra midweek day off and do some walking. Although she had been a pupil at the School for five years she had seen little of the tourist side of the Lake District. Trips outside the gates for pupils were strictly controlled.

May 24th, 2015


A new headmistress needs to find out more about her new school. She does it in a curious way. By a new writer to us.

By Imreadonly

Jack Masters walked into his new office, opened the Headmaster’s cupboard, and took off his coat. It was spring on the calendar, but still chilly enough to require a jacket.

He had just hung his coat on the hook when he heard a knock on the door.  “Yes, come in,” he said.

A student entered, first peeking her head through the door, then coming in all the way. She was wearing the school’s traditional uniform; a crisp white shirt, white knee socks, black loafers with a Velcro strap, a blue blazer with the school crest, blue skirt, and blue and red rep tie. But most unusually for a student entering the Headmaster’s inner sanctum, the young woman was wearing an enormous grin.

May 22nd, 2015

The Hangover

An evening in the local pub leads to a break of Matron’s rules and a painful visit to the Headmaster

By Tara Patterson

“Come on Tara another drink won’t hurt,” said Tara’s Roommate, Clare Nicolson.

The two junior members of the school staff of Queen Anne’s Boarding School, Ambleside were enjoying a night out in a local pub to mark the end of their first month’s work at the school. They had hardly noticed the time had passed 9.00pm, the official curfew time of the dormitory floor they had lived on since joining the school staff and agreeing to abide by the ‘house’ rules.

“It’s gone curfew already,” warned Tara. “If we leave now then we might make it back before lights out. It’s a pity, this Windermere Pale is a very drinkable pint. You know my Young Farmer friends used to call me the beer monster.”

May 19th, 2015


An incident from years ago sparks memories.

By Jane Fairweather

It was one of those Christmases. It was the mid 1950s and a dark post-war greyness lay across the land. The two sisters had come to their parents’ large house in the Welsh hills and everyone was shrieking at everyone else. Maria, the youngest granddaughter, had flown in a rage at her elder sister Helen and been sent to her room. Their Mother and Aunt had escaped from the atmosphere of the house to go for a walk. Jane was more or less happily married to a man she had met while serving as a Wren in the War and had three children. Her sister, Susan, was still ambiguously single, though she was almost sure she was about to enter into a relationship with a younger woman, Helena Attwood, whose gentle humour always soothed her, and had the prettiest backside she had ever seen. But they had not known one another that long.

May 6th, 2015

Room 234

Twenty years on a schoolgirl returns to her old school as a member of staff but has anything changed? By a new writer to us.

By Tara Patterson

Finally Lake Windermere came into view and, as the road twisted around the hills, Tara gazed upon a sight she hadn’t seen for nearly twenty years. It was only Tony Blackburn’s voice on the car radio that reminded her it was 2015 and that she was listening to the chart of 1995 when ‘Take That’ were number one in the charts with ‘Back for Good’.

Tara was 35, 5’4” tall with brunette hair and a shapely size 12 figure. After a couple of failed relationships she had become bored with life on the family farm in the Lincolnshire Fens. Browsing the usual old friend’s reunited sites on the net she had come across an advertisement for her old school; Queen Anne’s Boarding school, Ambleside, who were looking for a temporary Examination Invigilator. Fancying a change, Tara had applied on a whim and been accepted without interview. Her credentials as an ‘old Sphinx’ seemed to have opened doors and what’s more the pay seemed ok with accommodation provided in a beautiful part of the country. What would be a better way to spend a few months?

April 21st, 2015

Caught Spying

A girl finds herself in the wrong part of the school, and faces the consequences.

By Ben Barr

Author’s note:

I was fortunate to have seen a school punishment book dating from the 1980s which belonged to a certain school in New South Wales, Australia. I found one entry on the final page to be of particular interest. The details given in the punishment record are as follows: – 

Year – 1984

Girl aged 16

Offence – Spying on boys changing

Punished by – Deputy Head (Female)

No. of cane strokes – six

Position – Bending over a chair

Clothing – administered over panties

We will never know the exact details of the offence committed or of the punishment administered but I was motivated to write this fictional account.

April 19th, 2015

A Small Matter of Uniform

Uniform rules are strict, even for sixth form girls.

By Jane Fairweather

“Come on Lemon, we’d better get a move on or we’ll be late for Carstairs’ history!” Josephine Renniston, generally known as Jo because her rumbustiousness had reminded her mother of the heroine of Little Women, called out to her best friend, Jane Smith, alias Lemon for reasons that had long been forgotten.

“No, not just yet. We’ve got two minutes. Besides, don’t you want to see the gorgeous things Daddy sent for my birthday?!”

“I’ve seen them more than once! And it’s a week since your birthday.” Said Jo dryly.

Her friend’s obsession with pretty feminine underwear was something that Jo would never quite understand; her own idea of quiet rebellion was to put on tights and thin nylon briefs instead of the absurd combination of very full and inelegant school knickers and nylon stockings with suspender belt that the school rules decreed for Sixth Formers, though in fact hardly anyone obeyed those rules, even if Miss Dodd, the deputy head, had been making rumblings about it in recent days.

March 30th, 2015

The Last School Caning?

This factual account first appeared on our sister website for such reminiscences (otd-memories) and has been added to this site by popular request.

My dubious claim to fame is that I might well be the last school girl in England to be legally caned.

I was born into a strictly Catholic family in Nottingham in March 1981. My family has Spanish blood in its ancestry, as evidenced by my maiden name which was Martinez. I was christened Lucy and inherited black hair with dark colouring, presumably from my father’s side of the family. I have two older brothers who also have olive skin colour and we were all regarded as tall, strong children whilst we were growing up. I have always loved sports and have always kept myself in good shape. It’s not for me to say but I think I was generally thought of as a pretty and attractive girl during my early years with no shortage of male attention!

March 24th, 2015

A Very Short Sharp Shock

A girl’s parents and school collude to issue a firm warning

By Pat Greenham

The Headmaster of Brathenhall College had three sick notes in front of him and one request for absence to attend a family funeral. They were all for Sarah Langton, an eighteen year old in the upper sixth who had been at the College for six years. Sarah was well liked but the Headmaster was aware that recently she had shown some rebellious behaviour. The problem he faced this morning was that the handwriting on the three sick notes was different from the letter requesting absence for the family funeral, despite all supposing to have come from Penny Langton, Sarah’s mother.

March 18th, 2015

The Only Remedy

A sixth form girl discovers she’s not exempt from punishment.

By David

There was an unsettled atmosphere in the Upper Sixth English class. Mrs Maltby had taken the girls through the finer points of Shakespeare’s ‘Macbeth’ in previous lessons and had now instructed them to write an essay on the bard’s  understanding of Scottish history, but there was constant fidgeting and murmuring going on. It was so frustrating for her. This was a class of near-adults behaving like unruly children, yet she had no way of disciplining them. Detentions and impositions were unheard of for sixth formers. Eventually her patience gave way.

“I have had enough of all your disturbances,” she suddenly announced. “The next girl acting out of order will be sent to the Headmistress.”