SHEPHALBURY MANSION Stevenage.

 

One of the most interesting schools run by the Committee was a boarding school for Polish orphans  between the ages of five and eleven. The school also looked after, on a temporary bases, young children whose parents, through illness could not look after them. These children were returned to parental care once the parent had recovered.

 

Photo of Shephalbury school sent in by Krzysztof  Piwek

Photo of Shephalbury school sent in by Krzysztof  Piwek

 

An excerpt from a report by an Inspector who visited Shephalbury school in 1953 may give some idea of the Committee's aims, standards and achievement.

 

Maryla came to the UK with her mother Eugenia Gosiewska on the SS Oxfordshire from Lebanon to Hull in 1950 and lived in Northwick Park Camp

Maryla Gosiewska in her school uniform ready to go back to Shephalbury  school.

It would be difficult to imagine a more delightful background for the education of these 52 girls and 53 boys. Shephalbury Mansion is a well built, spacious Victorian house, set in beautiful grounds where two formal rose-gardens are conspicuous amenities. There is ample playing space and the standards of immaculate cleanliness and order, maintained both within and without the house, reflect great credit upon the Head Master Mr. Jaworski and his very limited domestic staff. The house, with its lofty, sunny rooms, makes a gracious setting for the family life that the Head Master and his four devoted colleagues have had the imagination and the sympathy to foster. Four class-rooms, admirably adapted to their purpose, two recreation rooms – one of which is “silent”, excellent washing arrangements, more then adequate sanitation provide real first class accommodation. The same high quality is noted in the dormitories, of which there are 10 with beds numbering from 18 to 8.  The girls and 7 tiny boys sleeping on the first floor, the other boys on the floor above. Separate sick-bays and dispensaries, each with three beds, exist for boys and girls. These sleeping quarters are light and airy and most beautifully kept. External iron fire escapes have been installed and the local fire brigade has been consulted in all matters affecting the children’s safety. The three foster mothers who are responsible for the care of these dormitories can be proud of their handiwork. The Head Master, a man of vision and wide social sympathies, was formerly an inspector of schools in his native Poland. Not only a Brilliant teacher, he is also an able administrator and shows in his dual function that he can direct a first  class school and run, with most careful budgeting, a country estate as well.

The teaching standards are very high in every subject, the school grounds supply an admirable laboratory for nature study and a special word should be said for the Art which by the free, colourful, imaginative treatment it receives, inspires these young people to embark upon such compositions as "All Soul's Day" and "Polish Camps in England". Of the Children's life at Shephalbury, as distinct from their schooling, we can write in almost idyllic terms. The Christian education they receive, the medical attention, the meals, the school uniform are all in line with the best traditions of the English preparatory boarding school. It is Pleasing to report in very high terms upon the quality of the teaching given and of the pupils' response to it."

 

Mr. Jaworski  the Headmaster (sadly now dead) at the rear. Maryla is at the front on the left, dressed in blue as a “Forget me not”.

Maryla  on the left with friends in the school grounds winter 1953

 

List of children who were at the school in 1957 and the camps from which they came.

E.  Wózek Boy Northwick Park   R. Pieckielon Boy Kelvedon   M. Katkiewicz Girl Springhill Lodges
W. Wózek

''

Northwick Park K. Bajdak Girl Kelvedon H. Cudny Boy Doddington
M. Wózek

''

Northwick Park J.  Greinert '' Kelvedon W. Miedowicz '' Doddington
B. Wawrzeńczyk Girl Northwick Park E. Greinert '' Kelvedon A. Maćkowiak '' Doddington
J. Wawrzeńczyk Boy Northwick Park E.  Rochel '' Marsworth D. Gerlowska Girl Doddington
Z. Kaszubowski

''

Northwick Park W. Rochel Boy Marsworth I. Schwetz '' Fairford
S. Siekacz

''

Northwick Park C. Junak '' Marsworth L. Schwetz. '' Fairford
M. Łasinska Girl Northwick Park C. Wożniak Girl Marsworth B. Buczynska '' Fairford
I. Kazik '' Stover Park K. Piwek Boy Melton Mowbery J. Buczyński Boy Fairford
R. Kazik '' Stover Park J. Danowski '' Melton Mowbery R. Kwaskiewicz '' Mepal
H. Dąbrowski Boy Hiltingbury J. Jendrek '' East Moor      
 

If you attended Shephalbury school and would like to share your memories and photos please contact me.

 

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