Fr George Robson (Shrigley 1948-51)

G Robson SDB MBE

I am afraid the picture of Prince Charles giving me the MBE is copyright. Here is a personal picture of me outside the Palace with my brother John and sisters Anne and Nicola. I hope to show the MBE picture in presentation but it can’t go on the web.

My 65 Years as a Salesian

I am proposing to start with my entering Thornleigh in September 1945, aged 11 and show a series of pictures through the different stages of my life.

G Robson SDB

Bro. George, Form Master of Upper Elements 1954-55
His pupils included Damien Cocksey, Peter Roebuck, Michael Dewane, Peter Stubbs, Robert Caulfield and Mike Kilduff.

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Tony Calway (Shrigley 1949-54)
Toney Calway
'My Life After Shrigley'

. I will talk about how I came to Shrigley, some memories of time there.
After shrigley, some time bank employee, some time soldier, sometime Petro Chemical Contractor employee,
father, husband, grand father, Catenian, Probus member, U3A member.

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John Burke (Shrigley 1948-55)
John Burke
John Burke and Joe Blenkinsopp at 1998 Reunion

“And May Thy Sons Hereafter Bring Honour To Thy Name……”

John Burke
John Burke, Captain of Fisher

I have been re-reading the accounts of last year’s talks by Bob Hilton and the others who recounted their lives after Shrigley. I propose to deliver a light-hearted account of my Salesian experience from 1948 to the present day beginning with the mysterious circumstances of my becoming a Shrigley boy. I had gone with my Mum and Dad for an interview at Thornleigh and to be measured for the prestigious brown blazer and school cap. There was to be a change of plans; I joined my brother at Shrigley and stayed for seven, happy, formative years followed by Novitiate and two years of what should have been three years of study at Beckford, curtailed by a free transfer to the teaching staff at Thornleigh, one of the happiest years of my life so far.

That marked the end of my years with SDB after my name but those formative years were to mark me and sometimes in remarkable ways.

This‘salesian’ part of my make-up is reflected in the creative writing I have produced, particularly that which I have submitted while on the 3 year full time Honours Degree Course at Bolton University in modules in writing for radio, the screen, the stage and in fiction writing. I intend to give examples of this in extracts from the above mentioned genres.

1959-61: Teacher Training College (the last of the 2 year trained.)
1961-72: St. George’s Secondary Modern School. Little Hulton. (Salford Overspill )
1973-92: Went to St. John Fisher High School in Wigan as Head of English. Later I became Head of Lower School making way for a bright member of my department (incidentally he was a Thornleigh Old Boy!)
After retirement I did much supply work mainly at St. Mary’s High School Leigh which my four grandchildren were to attend.

The title of my talk will be familiar to you. I used the school song at the close of a radio play which I wrote about ambition and rivalry between Staff in the context of a High School. I have it on tape and also the recording of the Evening Service from Shrigley as well as ‘Finlandia’ and Fingles Cave’ which Eddie Fox explained to us in Music Club.

I welcome this opportunity to pay tribute to Shrigley and to the Old Boys Association

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