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3 June 2018
DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME

On the subject of VWs  -  about 25 years ago my crazy other half was speeding on a country road and drove a new (couple of weeks old) VW Polo through a barrier on a bridge - it landed up-side-down in a river where it stayed overnight.  The AA said it was not their job to retrieve it but they would out of curiosity.  VW were claiming that the underside was completely water tight and they were right.  The wee car started first time.  It was still a wreck and had to be replaced.

The lad escaped with a couple of small scratches.

 
 IzzzzI Forbes (E72-75)
5 June 2018
I was the drummer and singer in Jack's union.Jeff Andrews on bass who sadly died two years ago.John Pirrie on guitar.still in touch.he lives near rochdale.Steve Gibbons on guitar.anybody know where he is?.great days great memories
Keith Bonthrone (S66-70)

6 June 2018

Thanks Keith for jogging my old memory. A short time ago I tried to remember John Pirrie's name. Odd because it's usually the name I remember but not the face but in John's case it was the opposite. Please remember me to him. If he wants to remember me of course. Jack's Union was a real trendsetter and made school dances events to attend. As you say great memories of you all. Jeff Andrews - swimmer and at an Altenilpe D of E camp convulsed with laughter over a Thommo comment about a 'transporter-sized' mosquito.
Sebrof - hope VW management see your comment. Great advert for their quality or are you on their advertising staff already in addition to all the other things that you do?
Slow start to posting this month - must be the heat.

Geoff Hern (M60-80)

6 June 2018

Hi Ffoeg, That wasn't an ad for VW but it is a true story.
Thd eejit that was driving the VW also drove a car into a poor wifies house, another through a wall into a farmers field and yes another into a different bridge wall......
He had so many accidents insurance companies were refusing to give him cover at any cost.   I was ill with worry every time he left the house.

He regularly bought 2 kebabs - he ate the bread and veg while the dog got all the meat?!?!?

He moved to Manchester - ended up bariatric and passed away at 50.
My now better half is built like a whippet and is a 'Sunday afternoon' driver - night and day.

IzzzzI Forbes (E72-75)

 

  

7 June 2018


I'm reminded of a sunny day in Germany fifty two years ago. Why do I remember? Well it's because on that day I was walking with a couple of pals from my dorm and we thought that it was going to be a day to remember all our lives, 6/6/66. The fact that 7/7/77, 8/8/88/, 9/9/99 and so on have all gone by since holds no relevance. It was that brilliant sunny day in Hamm as an innocent 13 year old that comes back to mind every year since. How I sometimes long for those innocent days to come and enfold me. Just the nonsensical ramblings of a pensioner!
Oh and hi Keith, glad that you are ok, a rumour was going 'round at one time that you had passed on!

Patrick Docherty (S66-70)

  

7 June 2018

Bl88dy VWs - can't get away from them! No1 son has just bought a Brazilian VW Kombi bus which is a good runner but needs a bit of TLC. Guess where it's parked? The look / sound of it takes me back to the early '60s and travelling around in a Volksbus in Hamm and Dortmund. I suggested that it should be repainted olive drab but got short shrift for tha idea!

Malcolm Graham (E60-65)

   

7 June 2018

I'm very sad to have to let you know that my twin sister, Christine Willmott (Law), passed away on Saturday 2 June.  Those of you who knew Christine and me at school will know that she was very happy there and that she cherished the friendships she made with staff and fellow pupils.  I hope that you can take a private moment to remember Christine from those happy times with fondness and respect at this very deeply upsetting time.  I would be very grateful if you could please refrain from posting anything concerning Christine's passing on this forum and instead remember her as you knew her at school.  Thank you for your consideration.

Patricia Law (M77-80)

    

9 June 2018

How nice to see Keith Bonthrone posting on this site!  I remember you well - I used to do the lighting and was in charge of the WGS amplifier, which Jacks Union occasionally "borrowed" when you came to play for dances.  In particular, I used to love "To Love Somebody", "Waterloo Sunset" and "Nights in White Satin".  Many decades later I went to see the Moody Blues live in York, and heard the original version of that last song.  Doing the lights and building sets for shows at WGS led me to doing similar when I went to university, so I finally ended up going to RADA and training as a stage manager.  

iZZZZi - more fires up here this last week, but I was away in the Southern Uplands, panning for gold and getting bitten by midges.  We don't get a lot of midges at the coast, perhaps I shouldn't go inland!  As to VWs - my first vehicle was a VW camper, two months after I passed my test I drove to southern Italy in it with three children.  It was brilliant, but sadly I had to get rid of it as there was no way I could get it through another MOT - too much rust.  It was about twenty years old, and probably only held together with weld.  Accelerating to 70 mph, the whole thing shook and shuddered, the kids cheering me on - give it some welly, Mum!

Pamela Ross (StJ63-68)

 

9 June 2018

VWs? Who wants to get away from them Malcolm? It was like returning home to go into the garage and buy the Up! - why do they put the exclamation mark there? Notice a comment Sebrof which could get me your job with their advertising department. I'm sure you'll have great fun with the bus Malcolm and it was probably your idea to park it where it is anyway so get the olive-drab paint out one dark night.

Geoff Hern (M60-80)

 

   

10 June 2018

To be honest Geoff my sons Volksbus, although a bit tatty is like a breath of fresh air. Absolute simplicity in design, construction and maintenence - and it's left hand drive. So far the gear linkage has had to be sorted out as finding a gear was like trying to find a Grand National winner. Brake master cylinder, single line, should be a doddle to fit and bleed. No complex electronic management systems. Instrumentation? Just a speedo and a fuel gauge! Wiper switch, light switch, heater, manual windscreen washer, a choke, indicators and the normal three pedals and a steering wheel. Who could ask for more, eh?

Malcolm Graham (E60-65)

    

11 June 2018

Malcolm Don't want to keep banging-on about it but one of the great things to me about the VW Bus was the upright position of the steering wheel. Don't know why. It just was. What year is your son's?

Geoff Hern (M60-80)

 

  

11 June 2018

I used to play in a band that had an old split screen VW Camper for a gig wagon. It was a brilliant motor if a bit slow. On our way to the Kudos factory in Bristol to pick up some speakers the big ends went on the M32. Luckily the singer (who owned the bus) was also a car mechanic so repair was cheap.

Bill Craswell (C62-65)  

  

  

12 June 2018

Geoff, made in Brazil in 1973 and is identical to the Hanover produced Kombi built between between 1956 and 1967. Vertical steering column and split windscreen included! 

Malcolm Graham (E60-65)

   

14 June 2018

Well, another milestone reached. Left employed work on the 1st June, with no job plans for the future. not sure if Im retired or not...lets call it a wee rest for a while.

Tony Reilly (M73-76)

   

14 June 2018

What and a vertical steering column Malcolm? Careful I could start on a Python  'We used to dream of a vertical steering column .......' routine. I seem to remember that the beetle too was made in Brazil long after production ceased in Germany? Another non-fussy job. My first one had no fuel gauge with just a kick-over switch to access the 5 litre reserve tank. Those were the days far removed from today's products and yet again nostalgia rears it's head.

Geoff Hern (M60-80)

   

   

14 June 2018

I saw what I think was my first UP! yesterday, cruised around it in the Bentley to view the driver, but it was most unlikely to be GH unless he'd aged well and had long blonde hair and lipstick. Not a sight to envision one suspects!

My story of steering wheels on VW campers relates to the 'lucky' escape my daughter had as a result of a vertical steering column, when 'experimenting with drugs' as she later put it, she crashed ours by ignoring a roundabout and going straight over it, finishing up with three steel pins in her foot. Luckily, for her, she got to hospital before the police. Mother, 28 years later, is just about speaking to her.

John Eustace (M59-62)

    

   

15 June 2018

Here somewhere is a piece written by Tim Woods taken from the Spring Edition 1960 Concordia (The first ever, in fact)Some 68 years later maybe not a lot has changed! Although to the best of my knowledge he or his parents did not own a VW, so this piece might not to print as it would appear irrelevant or redundant to the greater glory of a somewhat chastened VW!

John Eustace (M59-62)

   

       

15 June 2018

Not sure if these were shared previously on the Windsor Society site, but attached are pictures of the commemorative plaque placed on the wall outside the Boys School.

Bobby Hoffman (E69-75)

     

   

16 June 2018

Hi Geoff, Malcolm and all fans of the VW,
Did these old marvels require double declutching?  When did the need for this cease?

LOL

IzzzzI Forbes (E72-75)

    

    

17 June 2018

Double de-clutching? Now you've really opened the nostalgia floodgates Sebrof. After passing my test in 1954 my first car was a 1928 Austin Seven Tourer Soft Top bought for £25 - probably now worth a small fortune. Complete with starter-handle, gravity feed petrol and other such refinements. With an aluminium body - so light that when it wouldn't start one night two of us pushed it home as if it were a pram. 'Tell that to the young people of today Malcolm and they'd never believe you'.

Geoff Hern (M60-80)

    

     

18 June 2018

Geoff, my first car in 1971 was a 1955 Standard 10. Body from one car and engine, gearbox and back axle from another car plus new tyres. Put it together over one weekend. 3 forward gears and one reverse, double declutching mandatory. Travelled all over the UK for two years with that one. Full OTR price including tax and MOT of £35! Second car was a 1964 Mini Cooper - this one I could bump start, on the flat, in reverse, all on my own when necessary! Try that with a modern car!! And the vagaries of our driving license system in those days? I had only a provisional road license yet I held a full RAC international kart racing license which allowed me to race anywhere, anytime!  

Malcolm Graham (E60-65)

     

    

21 June 2018

Hi I was a pupil at Windsor Boys from 1968 until 1972 and am now an Accountant living in Kent. Brian Birkby was my housemaster at the time and was a great influence on my life a great bloke. I think Dai Newman was head boy and Mike Tompkins his deputy. Brian made me deputy head the year I finished. I remember Vince Fletcher Trevor Cardy and have fond mememories of Diane Bullock from the girls school.
Would be nice to catch up with anyone who remembers me.
All the best to everyone from my era,

Gerald Keast (C68-72)

     

    

23 June 2918

Hi - I have spoken with Brian Birkby this afternoon. He remembers you
with affection. Am also in touch with Dai Newman - retired CDT teacher. Keep posting!!

 Mike Capey (C63-70)

     

  

24 June 2018

Hi it was so nice to hear that Brian Birkby is still with us I would really like to catch up with him even if its just through text or email. Although he never taught me personally as a life mentor he had no peers I could go to him with any issues and take full advantage of his wisdom. I also remember with affection the music society he set up in Caernarvon House and this nurtured my love of music to this day. So Dai Newman went into teaching, where did he teach? I understand he taught CDT. As mentioned I went into accountancy in 1976 after studying at leiceter University, almost got into Durham. Good to hear from you Mr Capey I shall as you mentioned keep posting.
All the best to anyone who remembers me.

Gerald Keast (C68-72)

    

     

24 June 2018

By the way just to add to my previous post Paddy Hawkins and geezer Butler are both teaching and living in kent should anyone want to get in touch. Vince Fletcher joined the police force but has probably retired by now. All Caernarvon House boys. I was wondering what happened to Toni Leath as she was back in the day I think she was in St. James house at the girls school. Look forward to future posts and catch ups. 

Gerald Keast (C68-72)  

      

     

24 June 2018

Very sorry to have to report the death on Friday 22 June, very peacefully at his nursing home in Newcastle, of Padre Stuart Brindley, WBS 1969-76. He loved Hamm and spoke about it just about every day until very recently. He was 87. Survived by Elsie and by Jane, Simon and Martin and by his grandchildren Catharine and Mike. Much loved. RIP.

Simon Brindley (E69-75)

      

   

25 June 2018

Sad to hear about the passing of Padre Brindley who was my Padre during my time at Windsor Boys. I recently looked back and noticed that Keith Bonthrone the drummer with jacks Union. I have very memorable dance while they were playing at house parties especially the smooches to their version of nights in white satin. An opportunity to get into clinches with the Windsor Girls. Does the society still have reunions or have they ceased now?

Gerald Keast (C68-72)  

    

      

26 June 2018

So sorry to read of Stuart Brindley's passing.BFG could be a bewildering place for a newly arrived teacher and Stuart was both welcoming and very helpful.A gentle man in the true sense.My condolences to Elsie and the family.

Alan Hughes (E72-82)

      

     

26 June 2018

Simon So sorry to hear of Stuart's death. Our sincere condolences to all the family. I well remember his arrival - along with the rest of the family of course - and, as you write, he must have had fond memories of the time in Hamm. Not least in seeing how you, Martin and Jane really gave so much to the schools during your time there and got something in return because of it of course. Great times.

Geoff Hern (M60-80)

     

     

26 June 2018

In memory of Padre Stuart Brindley, here is a photo of Stuart (fifth from left), and Elsie (seventh from left) and the US American clan in Hamm circa 1974.

Bobby Hoffman (E69-75)

     

       

28 June 2018

Hi Gerald Keast, you asked about Toni Leath , I was in touch with Toni who had settled with her family in France. Sadly she passed away earlier this year, she had struggled a bit with her health in the last few years nevertheless it was so sad to hear of her passing. We started at Windsor on the same day and remained friends through school and when we met up again in our thirties.

Suzanne Thomas( nee Holt) (StJ70-73)

     

     

29 June 2018

Carol Whitehorn nee Harrison E72-75 I have only just seen your message from 2011. Yes I do have a brother called Richard and I did live in Berlin. My parents are fine they live in Tamworth, they have lived there for the last 26 years.

Deb Rose nee Puckey (M77-79)

     

      

30 June 2018

Hi Suzanne thanks for your message I was saddened to hear about Toni's passing earlier this year. I have some very happy memories of our time together at Windsor school especially at the school house parties. What part of France did she settle in with her family? I suppose we were about 16 when we met young love who knew. Once again thank you for getting in touch albeit with some sad news.  All the best.

Gerald Keast (C68-72)  

     

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