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David's Diary

David Cummins (40-50G) recalls the daily routine of life at WBS in the 1940's..

22 Jan 2019
Archive
It may be of interest to alumni of more recent years to hear about the daily routine of life at W.B. in the 1940's.  Bear in mind that, although this routine seems somewhat strict and had to be followed, it was normal in those days for all boarding and public schools similar to     W.B.S.
 
The day started at 7.00 a.m. when we were wakened by a Mr. Price who rang a hand bell around all the dormitories.  Another bell rang at 7.40 and a final bell at 7.55 when you had to be in the quad, washed, dressed and ready to parade by houses and seniority, to file into breakfast at 8 a.m. in an orderly fashion without talking.  We would sit in houses (3 tables to each house).  No self service in those days!  The procedure for all meals was the same except for lunch when teachers sat at the head of each table.
 
After breakfast bed making took place - prefects had to make sure, in all dormitories, that beds were made properly with no creases and that sheets were turned over in line right along the dormitory
 
The following time table operated on all weekdays except for Wednesday and Saturday afternoons when there no lessons but sport and matches took place.  Rugby and cross country running in the Autumn and Spring terms and cricket and tennis in the summer.
 
9.00 a.m        Assembly
9.10 - 10.40   Lessons (teachers went from classroom to classroom, unlike today).
10.40 - 11.00  Break, when the tuck shop was open.
11.00 - 12.30  Lessons
1.00 p.m         Lunch
2.00 - 3.30     Lessons
3.30                A cup of tea
4.00 - 5.30     Games
6.00               High tea
7.00 - 8.00    1st Prep.
8.00 - 8.30    Cocoa
8.30 - 9.30    2nd Prep (Senior School)
10.30            Bed
 
The routine on Sundays was not quite as formal.
9.00 a.m.       Breakfast
10.00 -10.30  Church
1.00 p.m         Lunch - or, by request, sandwiches to take out on an expedition.

Then we were free to follow other activities, such as expeditions on Exmoor.
We were allowed to walk into the countryside, but Barnstaple and South Molton were out of bounds.  We were not allowed bicycles.
 6.00 p.m.     High Tea
 7.00 - 7.30     Compulsory letter writing
This was to ensure that you wrote to your parents at least once a week.

The above time table was strictly adhered to and I cannot remember it ever being changed throughout all the ten years I was at West Buckland

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