Chris Wills writes:

I was never on the receiving end of the Luigi plank, so colourfully recalled by JAK.….but I do recall a Latin teacher Mr Pierce (nickname Daddio) (ex WWII pilot as recalled by someone in a previous email) who we had for Latin in 2nd & 3rd year in one of the Eastern Quad demountables. He had a short fuse and was quick on the trigger and used a piece of cane he affectionately called his “Waddy.” However he never came to class armed – so to speak. When he desired to administer some justice he would head off to his office and return across the Eastern Quad with the Waddy stuffed down the inside of his trouser leg. You could always tell because the length of the Waddy was such that it caused him to walk with a profound limp. The other problem he had was that he was quite cross eyed – which seemed at the time to explain why he hit you neatly across the fingers on one hand – and halfway up the wrist on the other! It lead to one trying some interesting anticipatory jerks of the hand to try and correct for his aim. On one occasion the Waddy went missing and I recall Daddio substituting the leg of a broken chair – fortunately delivered to the backside rather than the hand.

I think this is an accurate recollection – if anyone else can confirm this I will feel relieved!!

Roger Cook writes:

I've followed the email exchanges with great interest. Some have described episodes that I experienced . I certainly remember "Guts" Garnsey insisting that only Colin Saltmarch could leave the Intermediate Certificate exam room to seek the clarification he needed about a question, despite Yanson Yee volunteering to go instead (as Colin suggested, Hansen had probably long finished the paper while Colin was still battling the paper and the clock). Robin Winkler spoke for all of us when he bravely protested that this was "not fair". My memories of classroom and other activities during my 5 years at NSBHS are quite vague, except for 1st Year (I turned 12 that February). I can still picture where most of us sat in Class 1B in the downstairs classroom off the corridor between the main and southern quads.

Gordon "George" Cumming used to button his double breaster and stand with his short length of timber (I always thought it too wide as a pointer) cradled and pointed like a rifle. He was a gentle man and a great teacher, measured, precise and good humoured. I remember him responding to a smart-arse question (from Goodsir?) about what was the point of learning all this algebra, by smiling and patiently telling us that it would all be revealed in due course if we would just stick with it for now. I also remember his son Ray Cumming who was then in 3rd year befriending and joking with a group of us newly-arrived 1st Year students and making us feel welcome at this big school. For French, which I enjoyed, I had Eric Gluyas in 1st Year and Nancy Deans thereafter. In her farewell lesson to us in 5th Year she told us that she had had us during the years when even our mothers didn't love us. In a moment of great frustration, she called Michael Vowels a "bludger", and told him to go and look up the meaning so he would appreciate just how much of an insult that was. I'm sure Nancy will be pleased to know how well Michael turned out

I used to enjoy the freedom of trekking down to Tunks Park under the Northbridge suspension bridge, where those of us that were too small, slow or unskilled to play grade Rugby, still had a chance to play house football. For some of us late developers, the Patsy Aspinal dance class after school on Friday afternoon in the School of Arts building in Falcon Street near Crows Nest was a rite of passage in 4th or 5th Year. There we met and danced with some of the impressive girls direct that day from NSGHS and CremorneGHS, as well as receiving tuition in dance and dance etiquette from the lovely but firm Patsy. After their ritual freshen up in the back room, the girls lined up on the opposite side of the room to the boys, who were then required to make the first move...