Early on in the 1900s, children didn’t have many outings, but tended to go to local places that were easily accessed. The Library School children went to Grazeley in 1906 as the school treat. The Band of Hope had an outing in 1903 to Oxford when the whole school closed.
According to Rita Goodall who was a teacher from 1985 to 2000 and wrote a piece in our Lambs Lane History, one summer’s day, in 1978, the juniors were invited as part of ‘rent-a-crowd’ to welcome Prince Charles to Wellington Country Park. He visited to open the Dairy Museum. After lining the route, the children were free to wander the Park. One group were speechless when Prince Charles came over to speak to them when he saw them in the woods. Between 1920 and 1939, there were many school outings and the children once went to Bognor, in 1930, by motors which were probably charabancs. In the 1950s, coaches belonging to Smith’s took the children to places like Hayling Island, Southsea, or Brighton and sometimes to London. In 1958, one class went to Portsmouth Dockyard to look over The Victory. Some lucky children were taken to the Palace Theatre in Oxford to watch a ballet.
Ryeish Green School also had outings to London and they were taken to and from Reading Station by wagons and carts where there were two compartments reserved for them by the Great Western Railway. Their exhausting trip took in Charing Cross, Trafalgar Square, Whitehall, Houses of Parliament, Westminster Abbey, Hall and Bridge, Science Museum, Embankment, Colonial Institute, Albert Museum and back to Paddington.
In Our Village of Spencers Wood, Elaine Stobo recalls a Sunday School outing to Frensham Ponds in around 1952, for a picnic. Rev Lewarne was the vicar who accompanied them. There was panic on congregating to return home the only person missing was Rev Lewarne. Nobody knew where he was and one coach load of children returned alone with the younger children on board. Mr Lewarne eventually turned up an hour late. Marion Pyke said that the water was orange, probably from some iron content and that the children’s legs were stained with it. Marion suspects that the public is not allowed into the water these days. Notice from the photo that the girls tucked their dresses into their knickers as they were apt to do in those days!
Margaret Bampton. The above was taken from our history books.