Do you remember having to take your own plate for Christmas parties and the left over
'goodies' being given out at morning play next day? My children absolutely adored mince pies and were very disappointed that no one took them for the Christmas parties so each
year I had to bake and send a dozen mince pies.
When Michelle was a baby I took her to the baby clinic. It was a real afternoon out - all the
mums got dressed up and the babies were in their best. After we had finished at the clinic you went with your 'special friends' for a pram push around the village. If my memory is
correct by the time Matt was born I had to go to Winterton to have him weighed and checked over.
Elaine Harrison (Ogg)
My greatest memories of the canteen at Winteringham are of the blackout curtains at the
windows. I presume they were a relic of wartime as it wasn’t long after the war that I started school. Someone had embroidered the black material with coloured threads to make them
look a little prettier.
I also remember the long tables and benches on either side. If a teacher wasn’t sat on one end a “Dinner Monitor” served the rest of the table.
I loved my school dinners which when I started school cost 9d a day rising to 1 shilling before I left the school.
We ate “proper meals” – meal and two veg. For puddings typical examples were sponge & custard or milk pudding and prunes. We always lined the prune stones up on the side of the
plate counting “Tinker, tailor, soldier, sailor, rich man, poor man, beggar man, thief” In summer we would go bramble picking on the old railway lines and could sell them to school
for 3d a pound. After this we might have bramble and apple pies with custard.
I especially remember the Christmas Dinner as we had real Christmas Puddings with, I think,
a three penny bit inside. Certainly it was always exciting to see who would get the coin. I don’t remember anyone ever swallowing one.
Being probably the only child who NEVER stayed to a dinner throughout my entire primary school life, means I cannot comment on the school dinners themselves, but by reputation,
and my sister’s say so, they were extremely good. But I remember other times in the canteen - when Miss Brown or Miss Malone took advantage of the blackout blinds to show us a black
and white filmstrip, almost always on a nature topic if I remember right. I think that once a year, a travelling film projectionist brought some films for our amusement. Again nature
wasn’t far off the agenda with some Walt Disney nature specials, but I think that there were also children’s comedy films, again in black and white.
For the Christmas parties we took our own plates, with our names on as mentioned above.
Before the big day, Miss Brown would have organised us all to bring in various ingredients for the meal, and there always seemed plenty, and to spare. Various mum’s would ‘wait’ on
we children. I adored then, and still do, those meat paste sandwiches!
There were eight tables, with a form or bench each side, and I am told that the teachers
would sit at the ends on a chair on a rotating basis so that they ate with every child every couple of days or so.
There were regular mother and baby clinics, when we could divert our gaze from our work
and idly watch the mums with their high-wheeled prams to-ing and fro-ing to the canteen. When they came out, they always seemed to be clutching at least one tin of National Dried
Milk. The tins themselves were an institution - not so much for their original purpose of holding the milk, but they were so large and well made that the school used many for the
storage of pencils, crayons, rulers and almost anything else that could be kept in them. They were white with all the text in dark blue.
A less happy memory of the canteen was of a game of football during a playtime one
summer. Being in goal - between the regulation jackets eight strides apart, it fell to me to save a rifled shot from Tony Button. I couldn’t get near it as it flew into the non-existent net,
and the next thing we all heard was the tinkling glass as the ball smashed one of the windows. Before the dreaded owning up to Miss Brown, came the compulsory apportionment of
blame. Was it Tony for the shot, or me for failing to stop it? I think the jury is still out!