OldCiren - Cirencester, Gloucestershire, UK
Judging by the number of posts on Social Media, as well as “Selfies” and dogs doing tricks, pictures of babies appear to be a firm favourite. I’ve noticed what doesn’t get posted, are the semi-formal School photos that were once very popular; at least they were popular when I was a boy at School at Lewis Lane in the 1960’s. Photos at Lewis Lane and at Powells School, were taken at least once a year at a time when it was warm and bright enough to do so. Sometimes the pictures were taken in the classroom and at Lewis Lane, I remember, individual pictures were taken outside in the playground with the child sitting or kneeling on a rush mat. Group photos such as 5 a side Football teams or the Sewing Competition that was held one year, were also taken on the same rush mats; larger groups were posed standing with a Teacher.
Important events such as speech days or visits to places such as the Circus, were also recorded by School photographers and were usually published by the Standard. I’ve mentioned visits to the Circus before on this page, but there were also visits to the Regal Cinema; directly opposite the School and some readers may remember the School Christmas party was held at the Regal each year with fish paste sandwiches and red jelly.
Schools continue to this day to facilitate photographs of children; but usually only on the first day of School for 4 or 5 years olds. These are published in newspapers and are displayed in frames by proud parents, until the time perhaps when the pupil grows up to become too embarrassed by the picture, and pressurises Mum and Dad to take it down.