What's new?


1940-41 Audrey Linklater, (Lithgow) Died 9/5/2012
Ex-staff Winifred Hodson, (Booth) Died 23/10/2012
1934-40 Kenneth Radcliffe
1935-39 R Eric Rodham,
1933-38 Geoffrey H. Ellis Died December 2012
1942-47 Peter Gilmore Died 3/2/2013
1940-42 Joan Thomas (Leach)
1959-64 David Readman
             Graham Smith Died 12/10/2012

Nostalgia; photos from early sixties and seventies.

Nostalgia has another new collection of photos from the 60s and 70s

Request for cine film or video

If anyone is aware of cine film or video footage that we don't yet have posted please contact webmaster.aytonoldscholars@gmail.com and we'll makre arrangements to have it digitised. As well as returning the original copy we'll send you a DVD of the footage.

So far we have Ayton School - Magna est Veritas and, thanks to David Pritchard, Ayton School by T-K Video.

1935-36      Hanno Reed (formerly Reichenbach) – died 16 January 2012

Hanno Reed (formerly Reichenbach) arrived at Great Ayton in 1935 as a refugee from Nazi Germany via a Friends’ school in Switzerland. Although he only stayed at the school for one year, he continued to talk of his time there with gratitude and affection right up until his recent death at the age of 92. He was pleased to receive additional help from Mr Dennis, the headmaster, and a number of other staff, without which he acknowledged he would not have passed his “Matric”. Hanno involved himself fully in the life of the school, as Vice Captain of Pendle House and by playing football and tennis.
Hanno was fortunate to gain a place at the London School of Economics, graduating with a BSc (Econ) in 1940, just before being interned on the Isle of Man. He left there to join the Army, firstly as a member of the Pioneer Corps, then RASC, and subsequently attached to the Political Intelligence Department of the Foreign Office, concerned with the re-education of German POWs, in preparation for their re-employment in post-war Germany.
From 1946 – 1972 Hanno carved a successful career in the world of business, which included a 5-year spell in Singapore, which culminated in his appointment as General Manager of all overseas activities for a British Tyre Company. Throughout his retirement he continued to pursue his business interests, read widely, travel extensively and enjoy his delightful garden.
Since his return from Singapore in 1958 right up until his death in January 2012 Hanno lived in the same house in Gerrards Cross, where he nursed his beloved wife, Peggy, through a long illness before her death in 2009. Hanno is survived by a son and daughter, and by four grandchildren.

Golden Wedding April 2012

On 22nd April 2012 I travelled from Wirral via Liverpool to Stafford for the Golden Wedding Celebrations of Tony Browne (1947-53) and his wife Beryl.  The venue was the magnificent new Tearoom at the farm day centre for young people with learning difficulties, not far from their home, which Tony helped to establish.

 Beryl was born and raised in Jamaica.   She and Tony met while they were both working in the Bahamas, where they married and where their son David was born. The  guests were all friends and colleagues representing various phases of Tony and Beryl’s life together. They came from Ayton via the Bahamas to those involved through work with the canals with which Tony had been associated for many years, as well as their numerous connections from and around the Stafford area.

John (1947-53) and Margaret Fothergill also attended; John like me was a part of Tony’s time at Ayton.  Closely associated with Ayton and specifically the Society of Friends  - were Jean (Macauley) and Bob Bates, former wardens of Quaker Meeting Houses at Leeds and Scarborough, whom Tony met at Holiday Schools in his  post Ayton days.  Perhaps scholars from our generation may remember these delightful summer events which were organised mainly through the various Yorkshire Friends’ Schools, by Mike Sweet’s (1946-52) parents in the 1950s?

It was a really enjoyable day in a delightful setting.

Gill Jackson (Hinds 1950-55)


1941-45       Mavis Knowlton (Griffiths), died March 2012                      
1945-52       Lady Richard Cooper (Angela Wilson) died 18th July 2004
1947-52       Clive Olbery, died, 21st April, 2012

Linda Knott and David French made a joint unveiling of the commemorative plaque at 3.30.p.m, on Saturday 23rd June
Chairman's Statement This is the full statement which was
published in abridged form in this year's magazine.
New Ayton School Video - mp4 format
Family tragedy for Matthew Badger who was at Ayton in the late 70s.
An online book of condolences is available.
Louise Sensical has had her baby, a little girl to be called Charlotte Claire, weighing in at 8lb 9oz.
The 2011 Magazine has been published.
Minutes of the 123rd Annual General Meeting have been published.
External website found: Peter Rushforth - a Yorkshire novelist and teacher
I regret to inform you that Bill Kearsley (early 1950s) passed away last week (posted 7th July 11).
I regret to inform you that Tim Straw died 30th May. His funeral was at St Bedes chapel at Middlesbrough Crematorium on June 6th and a gathering was held at the Ayton Meeting House.

Douglas Horne Tribute to Douglas Horne (1917 - 2011) by his daughter Sue

New page on drama and music. Wherever possible programmes from past performances are included. Many stars were born!

New images from 1938 - 1940 from Peter Cooper can be found in the form photo archive, school photo archive and staff archive page (new better quality image).

Forum, guestbook and mailing list have all been fixed (they were broken when the site was moved to the new address).

New (old) photo of the First XI Cricket team from 1970

The Ayton School - Magna est Veritas video is now available online.

Report on the 2010 Reunion Walk.

Reg Clayton - who taught metal and woodwork from 1921-53 now has a page in the Staff Archives.

Ruth HarwoodOld Scholars and ex-Staff will be very sad to learn that Ruth Harwood has died. She passed away on Friday 4th January 2008 at Hartrigg Oaks, New Earswick, York, where she lived in recent years.

There was a Memorial Service at Great Ayton Meeting House, High Green, Great Ayton, at 2.00 pm, Monday 14th January.

There is now an online Tribute and Appreciation of Ruth Harwood

Joyce SpinksThere is sad news to pass on to OS; Joyce Spinks (Dobbing) 1932-42, died early in the week commencing 10th December following a fall at her home.

Joyce, daughter of Herbert Dobbing who taught at Ayton from 1921-45, was a past AOSA President 1971-72 and was always to be seen at Reunion time, greeting and catching up on news with her very many friends. Joyce will be much missed by many generations of Old Scholars.

There is now an online Tribute and Appreciation to Joyce Spinks

Martyn GaudieIt is with great sadness we advise Old Scholars and Friends that Martyn Gaudie (1935-38) - AOSA immediate Past President, died on Tuesday 4th September.

The funeral was at Great Ayton burial ground and Meeting House at 3-pm on Monday Sept 10th., and there will also be a Memorial Meeting at Bootham School, York in November, a place where he spent many happy years, even after he left at old scholars cricket matches.

A Tribute and Appreciation of Martyn's life can be found on a separate page.

New photos are being added all the time - now there are three snow 2006 photos taken by William PIne; the problem was knowing where they are. Now there is a New Photographs page with thumbnails which are links to the actual location. If you want to know a bit about the photo rest the mouse pointer aver the thumbnail and wait for the "Alt Text" - then click on the thumbnail. 

To get back to the New Photographs page click on the "back key" top of your browser or the backspace key on the keyboard.

There's a new Jigsaw available for you. A peaceful view of the beck - more to follow.

Did you enjoy the first of our jigsaw puzzles? Well, there is another now - a very well known view and a beautiful photo. Click here to see for yourself. If you have a few minutes you'll enjoy this this one as well.

Our first online Jigsaw Puzzle is still available. And if you like it e-mail and I'll add more.

Much was written about John Reader. You can find it all here.

You can now join AOSA online, or by snail-mail if you prefer. If you are a member and pay your subscription annually, you can now do this online

There is a new section in "History" - a complete website version of the 1941Centenary History by G. Alston Watson. There are links to each of thirteen chapters and one Appendix. A very interesting read.

You can now send Ayton postcards to friends and acquaintances. There are thirty six scenes - twelve each of: School & Grounds; Village and Countryside; and Archive photos. Just click on the thumbnail photo to bring up the page for you to complete and e-mail.

If you visit the Prospectus pages in Archives the missing pages have turned up - so now you can see how much it cost to send children to Ayton in 1927 - ia addition to all the other information in this amazing Ayton School marketing document (including the clothing lists as well).

For inhabitants of Leven Hall in the 1980s and 11 and 12 year olds in 1945 and 46, there are new  group photos on line. Go to the New Photographs page for links to individual pages. 

Tim Green (1989-92) has emailed to say he has a few Reunion photos on a website of his own. Click on the line below to go their direct:


Were you at School in 1979? If you were you could be interested to see an extract from the Autumn Beckside - together with photos (loaned by Emma Killick 1978 - 1981) - covering the super production of Tom Sawyer

There are now two whole School Photographs - the first from1973 has been supplied by Lindsey Devons (Harrison 1969-73) and the second from 1980 by Lucy Ryan (Burnard 1976-83).

Both are very large images (in five seamless pieces) and - if you have a slow modem - be prepared for a bit of a wait while they load.

New photographs in the Archives Staff section are added as they surface so it's worth checking now and again. However, there are now quite a few text articles about staff from the earliest days to the 90s which are linked from the caption details under the photos. Click here for Archives, Staff - Contents

Mel Stewart (1951-57) has e-mailed and attached a scanned press cutting photo of the "Sports Day that never was" in 1957. Have a look - perhaps you can identify the missing names.

There are now two Team photo from 1948 - the first is First XI Football and the second First XI Cricket - both featuring characters from the era it would be good to locate. 

Do you know who the very first Ayton School scholar was? There is a page telling you all about him

There  are two new Form photos online - Sixth Form (I think - but could be Prefects group) from 1990 and 1991. There are no names - other than Chris Scaife which means your help is needed - Click on 1990 or 1991 to see the photos.

Lucy Ryan (Burnard 1976-83) sent a photo from Emma Killick's (1978 - 1981) album of a large Leven Hall residents group May 1981. There are loads of faces here but no names. if you know who is who please e-mail and the names will be added.

When Ayton School closed the children were involved in sponsoring a child – Tamilarasan - through “Plan International India.” As this was a long-term project the School Committee decided in 1997 that some Parent Association funds should be used to continue to sponsor Tamilarasan’s education. Each year Robert Campbell receives an update of his progress – reproduced here together with two photographs. Follow this link

Lucy Ryan (Burnard 1976-83) has sent in a photo of VI Form in 1982 and of the Girls Hockey Team in the same year. There are a few names missing - can you help?

Sidcot School were one the beneficiaries of £10,000 from distribution of remaining School funds. Alice Meager officially opened the Ayton Room - a striking common room and Ayton legacy. Follow this link for a page recording the opening ceremony.

Mike Adam (1945-54) has e-mailed a 1948 Form photo file - a lot of faces connected with the other photos on this page

There is another page of photos covering the rebuilding process - this time it is the top apartment of Headmaster's House. Go and have a look - very nice it is!

The Village section now has another page with a number of photos of All Saints Norman Church off Low Green where Captain Cook worshipped and his mother is buried.

If you have been back to Ayton since the redevelopment you will see the Boys' Bridge is no longer there. Well, it's now in a new location - see page one of Nostalgia - School Grounds.

Mike Adam (1945-54) has sent a photo taken in about 1946 or 47 of himself, Dick Dennis, and John Findlay - included here in memory of John Findlay who died 16th August 2001.

There is a new page four in the Grounds section of the Archives. Tony Tulip (1937-43) e-mailed some remarkable photos of snow and subsequent floods in the winter of 1941.

For those who remember the rowing boat on the lake in the early 1950s there are two photos supplied by Tony Browne (1947-53.)

Keith Sullivan (1960-63) has sent in a photo of the Cricket 1st XI for 1963 with plenty of interesting information about the Team and its achievements - see Page 3-1

Archives - In the Buildings section there are new Leven Hall photos. Sam Milbank (Ward) supplied a super shot of of Leven Hall in the snow and there is now a page entitled "Life at Leven Hall" further photo contributions are always welcome.

There  are new Form photos - Sonia Wade (Dunn) - President 2001-02 - brought these along to the Reunion; they are now scanned and on page three of Archives - Form Photos

Archives now has a new section - Reminiscences. There are two articles there at the moment; the first a comprehensive history of the San - an article from the Autumn '77 Beckside extracted by James Slater, and the second a highly individual account of aspects of School Life: "AYTON “HI-JINX” - by Harry Snalam 1946-52.