Friday 7 September 2007


Officially, the boys were divided into four "houses" (yes, like at Hogwarts). However, the physical characteristics of the school made it infeasible to assign boys to dormitories on this basis, so in practice the "houses" didn't correspond to anything in reality. It seemed a meaningless concept and I took little notice of it.

I think the houses were all named after creatures of some sort. One of them was probably the kingfisher, which was a symbol associated with the school for some reason. I think another one was the otter. Perhaps I was one of the Otters; I don't remember now.


Julian Williams said...

Kingfisher - Blue
Otters - Green
Panthers - Red
Wasps - Yellow

We were allocated our house on arrival and kept it for our full career at the school. There were painted pictures of the animals on the wall in the hall outside the refectory. We were also all given a number, maybe mine was 91, and had a clothes peg in a small annex opposite the changing room

We were divided into houseteams for sportsday and swimming competitons all and all wore very pretty ribbons safty pinned on to our sports shirts.

In the summer we had a cricket tournament between the four houses, Teh Wasps secret weapon was Needham, the best batsman in the school, but the rest of us all so bloody useless were still not good enough to win the cricket tournament. (He used to hit 6s)

Midway through my time at Stouts Hill they invented a black mark scheme whereby if you were naughty you would recieve a black mark which was put against the house. On the first day this was announced they also announced that Williams (thats me) had been naughty and I got the first black mark for Wasps. For the rest of the day the other boys were commenting to me how I had let the the House down.

Jonathan said...

Thanks, Julian. I think my school number was 113; it was marked on my wellingtons.

Anonymous said...

My house was Panthers as I recall and there was a Credits and Debits system linked to them. On the wall next to the tuck shop hung four sheets of paper with the names of the boys in each house under the repective picture.
For good deeds/ work you might receive one or two credits or for poor work/ misbehaviour some debits. Each Wednesday after lunch there was 'Credits and Debits' in the library where those with the most impressive collection of credits from each house had their names read out by Mr Cromie. Those boys who had too many debits also had their names read out to shame them.
At the end of each term (or possibly year) the winning house had a prize. This could be a 'Feast' ie: Chef laying on an impressive spread in 'Tavern' which all house members could feed themselves on. In the summer there was the option of a barbecue instead. There were other prizes that I cannot recall, but I do remember when Panthers won in 1978, we persuaded Mr Cromie to let us go to the cinema in Cheltenham to see 'Grease'
Alan Davis

Jonathan said...

Thanks, Alan. I think the credits and debits, and the house prize, must have been innovations after I left in 1967. Unless I was so oblivious that I didn't notice them.

Anonymous said...

I've added a comment about credits and debits to in the thread about punishments
I was an Otter. I even ended up as the head, though a head had no function what ever.
I was number 81. The numbers system was designed to make it easy to label boots etc by hammering nails into them, but of course it meant that new boys had to be given the numbers vacated by leavers and the system was abandoned not long after Crinks took over.
There also had to be a constantly revised and updated master list somewhere to refer to. If all one found was a boot with 44 on it it wasn't much use without a list. I think the bootroom in the tower had numbered pigeonholes, but the bootroom was also abandoned when the numbering stopped.