On 8th September 1965 Great Baddow High School – or Baddow Comprehensive as it was known back then - opened its doors for the first time, with 16 staff and 227 children joining ‘the First Year.’
Today students and staff at the 1400-strong school celebrated with birthday cake and cookies, launching what will be a year of activities and events commemorating this important date in the school’s history.
Headteacher, Carrie Lynch, said
‘We want our celebrations to last throughout the academic year and have several different types of activity in our calendar all year. There will be a 1965 non-uniform day, raising money for the charities chosen by School Council. Teachers will also be delivering lessons in the style of the time and will be exploring aspects of life in 1965 in different subject lessons.
The Diner will be serving 1960s school dinners which may include spam fritters! I am particularly excited about an original drama, music and media performance based on the past Headteachers’ accounts of the history of Great Baddow High School and the reminiscences of student and teachers over the last 50 years, which will take place in the summer.
We would be delighted to hear from past students and staff who would like to contribute memories, photos and artefacts which can be incorporated into the performance piece or accompanying exhibition.’
Catering manager, Wendy Perry and her team made over 1000 cookies which were given to students at break time in The Diner decorated with black and gold balloons and banners.
Amongst the staff helping serve the ‘birthday’ cookies and cakes was Pearl Bonner, Office Manager and longest-serving member of the school staff. Mrs Bonner joined the school during the school’s 25th anniversary in 1990. Whilst seeing many changes – particularly in the number of support staff now involved in secondary schools – she has been very happy that the general ethos and atmosphere in the school has been sustained, with her own grandchild now attending GBHS.