Fond memories of school in war years

Anderson's Bay School class of 1942 (from left) Beverley Muirhead (81), Jenny Alloo (80), Ann Forss (81), Walter Connor (83), John Sinclair (80), Jim Martin (81), Murray Elston (81) and Graeme Watt (80) catch up and reminisce at the school yesterday. Photo by Peter McIntosh. Things may have changed, but the memories came flooding back as Anderson's Bay School's class of 1942 visited the school yesterday.

It was 10 years since the class had last gathered together, but it was ''as if we have never been apart'', former pupil Murray Elston said.

The school and the schooling methods were ''unrecognisable'' compared with when the class was there in ''the darkest days of the war years''.

''I remember the scarcity of everything,'' Mr Elston said.

''I remember having to hide in the bush which was adjacent to the school in air raid practice.''

The group were standard 3 pupils (year 5) at the time and former pupil Jim Martin could vividly recall being something of a troublemaker.

''I used to get in a spot of bother,'' he said with a laugh.

''Things were different then. We made our own fun outside, like getting into somebody's strawberry patch across the road during lunchtime.''

Despite seeing quite a lot of the principal, he enjoyed his school days and was the class dux in 1945.

''We used to get a gold medal in those days,'' he said.

It was a memento he still had.

Mr Elston said the opportunity to see his old classmates again was special.

''There's a bond amongst us really because of the war years,'' he said.

''There was nothing on the shelves [because of rationing], but as kids it didn't really mean much to us.''

But, after 72 years, seeing familiar faces meant a lot.

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