Prize Day at the Grammar School December 1911

A report in the Parish Magazine January 1912

transcribed by Mary Fielding

“On Monday, Dec. 18th, the annual districtuion of prizes was held in the Town Hall.  The proceedings this year were of unusual interest as the Rev. Canon Corfe, formerly an assistant master at the Grammar School, and the donor of a valuable annual prize, was able for the first time to be personally present.

The chairman (Dr. Dewhurst) in a few introductory remarks congratulated both the staff and the pupils of the schools on the excellent progress made during the past year, and the successes at various public examinations.  Many Grammar Schools throughout the country had in recent times been obliged to close their doors owing to the ever increasing requirements of the Education Authorities.  He was glad to say however that Campden was one of the few still able to hold its own.  Neverthless he must remind his hearers, and especially those who had children at the Grammar School, that it was absolutely essential that a higher percentage of scholars should complete their full course of tuition at the school.  The practice of sending a child for a year or so was worse than useless as far as the child was concerned, and if persisted in would eventually lose the School its grant from the Board of Education.

The Headmaster (Mr. F. B. Osborne) then introduced Canon Corfe who had kindly come down in order to distribute the prizes.  The Canon was an old friend of his, although the present occasion was the first time he had ever seen him in the flesh.  They had however corresponded for so many years that he had always accounted their friendship as one of long standing.

Canon Corfe in giving away the prizes expressed his great pleasure in renewing his acquaintance with Campden.  It was now thirty years since he had lived there, but during that time the old Town had been seldom out of his thoughts.  Often in his quiet moments during these long years, he could see the ancient stone houses with all their old world associations.  Campden was endeared to him by many old and sacred ties; it was indeed a pleasure to revisit the old scenes and renew the friendship of past years.  Mr. H. Wixey proposed a hearty vote of thanks to Canon Corfe, for coming so long a distance to give away the prizes, and he made the pleasing announcement that he intended to offer a prize for annual competition, the subject to be decided on later.  Mr. A. B. Williams briefly seconded the proposition, which was carried with acclamation.

After the prizes had been given, of which we append below a detailed list, an excellent entertainment was given by the scholars, consisting of selections from “Midsummer Nights Dream.”  Both the acting and the stage arrangements refected the greatest credit on those responsible for them.  Although all acted their parts unusually well, we were particularly charmed with Miss Irene Roberts’ rendering of the part of “Oberon”, which showed histrionic ability of no mean order, while A. B. Williams as “Quince” delighted everyone with his fluent and ready speeches and thorough grasp and knowledge of his part.  The humorous role of “Bottom” was admirably acted by A. W. Osborne, who kept his audience in a continuous uproar of merriment, and Miss Nora Vinn as the “Fairy Queen” showed her ability in other spheres besides the passing of Examinations.

The following is a list of Prize-winners: – The Payne-Smith Prize, Divinity, IV. year, A. W. Osborne; the Payne-Smith Prize, Mathematics, A. N. Vinn, the Rev. F. S. Foster’s Prize, Latin, IV. year, A. W. Osborne; the Rev. Canon Corfe’s Prize, English, IV. year, N. Vinn; Form Prize III. year, 1st, Edgar Keen; Form Prize, III. year, 1st, A. B. Williams; Form Prize, II. year, 2nd, Nelly Jones; Form Prize, I. year, N. Warmington; Mathematics, B. F. O. Bates; Mathematics, C., John Jones; Mathematics D, H. Wheatcroft; Art Prize, Edgar Keen.

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