In J.T.C. this morning we had rifle drill and then L.M.G. instruction.

   This afternoon Donald [Tipper] & I played for the House 2nd XI v Porter’s. Porter’s batting first scored 82. Donald only bowled three balls and got a wicket for no runs. We scored 52, Donald got 3 and I got 5 before I was caught. Had we had a full team (only 9 turned up) we might easily have won. The same thing happened last week v Leeds’ when we lost by 10 runs.

   England beat The Rest by an innings & 89 runs.

Great is our LORD, and of great power: His understanding is infinite. Psalm 147:5


   In Scripture [first period, with Mr. Kay] we have finished St. Mark Chapter 14. In Strife [second period, English, with Mr. Vaughan] I am reading the part of Henry Thomas.

   At dinner time I played cricket. We have a wide wicket & only a thin stick as bat & have to bat left-handed as well, so generally a side of 4 doesn’t hit more than about 12. We enjoy it all the more though, especially as we can have five “Test Matches”. Today I got 0, 4, 1, 2, 5. Hat tricks are not at all uncommon.

   Nothing else happened all day.

   Tonight I spent over two hours doing prep, including a 2–page essay for French: “Le Camping”.

I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you. John 14:18


   At school in Physics we are doing experiments in light. I worked with Renton today.

   I came home through town.

   Dad today bought me a cycle frame. We already had a couple of wheels so we went down to Halfords [Warwick Road] & Dad got a couple of tyres & inner-tubes. Later we cycled [I on Bob’s bike] to a shop in Sparkhill & got some handlebars — white-covered plastic, and a chain wheel. [I am a bit disappointed because I really want dropped handlebars like all the other boys have on their Raleigh bicycles, but these are straight. Dad seems to think they are “safer”, and the man in the shop agrees, but I just know the boys at school are going to laugh.] Now I need a saddle, chain, and white metal mudguards.

   We spent all this evening putting the parts together.

And the LORD said ... I have prayed for thee that thy faith fail not. Luke 22:31–32


   I spent most of this morning and afternoon doing homework and revision for the exams which begin on June 23rd, a fortnight on Friday.

   This afternoon I also cleaned the “new bike” and after tea I played out and watered the garden.

   It has again been very warm — the warmest day for nine months in London. Figures for Birmingham from last Sunday:—

Sunday 27544449.00.80.5
Monday 28614854.510.0Nil 
Tuesday 29655057.58.3Nil 
Wednesday 30695059.5 9.3Nil 
Thursday 31725161.513.8Nil 
Friday June 1725161.513.1Nil 
Saturday 2675762.0  0.7Nil 
Glory and honour are in His presence; strength and gladness are in His place. 1 Chronicles 16:27


   French today [first period] was in Room 59. Apart from Choir practice there is nothing to record. I came home on the S.B. as usual.

   It has been unbearable hot again. I had a headache tonight so I went to bed early having done my prep.

For Thou hast delivered my soul from death: wilt Thou not deliver my feet from falling, that I might walk before God in the light of the living? Psalm 56:13


   Nothing happened at school as usual. I went in shorts for the first time since last October [and the boys laughed]. It was very hot again. I was home for just after 1.30pm.

   Apart from going down to the Library I spent all the afternoon doing six or seven preps.

   Tonight I went to Cubs as usual. We had a short game of cricket then issued out Gala tickets.

   This evening Lee Savold won the World Heavyweight Championship by causing Bruce Woodcock to retire with a very badly cut eye after four rounds.

   [We love to hear a boxing match on the wireless: “My Lords, Ladies and Gentlemen, this is a fifteen round contest, three minutes each round, for the Heavyweight Championship of Great Britain between, in the red corner, the contender Freddie Mills and, in the blue corner, the holder Bruce Woodcock”. There is tumultuous applause. We hang on every word of the commentary given by Stewart Macpherson, with inter-round commentary by W. Barrington Dalby].

I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify Me. Psalm 50:15


   I went in shorts again today. In Physics we are studying convex and concave mirrors. [I remember the difference because a concave mirror is “caved in”.]

   I played cricket at dinner time as usual.

   Several records were broken today. Hutchings got 34 (highest individual score) out of our side’s 70 (highest score). We won by 50 runs: biggest victory. The best bowling record is held by Mercer — 4 wickets in 4 balls for no runs.

   After school I went to under XV [sic] nets.

   Tonight I have spent doing homework.

Great is Thy faithfulness. Lamentations 3:23


   Today was definitely cooler.

   In Maths we are doing Trigonometry again. In J.T.C. we did loading from low cover and rifle drill.

   This afternoon I played for the House v Williams’ 2nd XI. Williams’ scored 137 for 5 dec. (Harris 41), then we were all out for 9 runs, Harris taking 7 [wickets] for 8 runs including 3 wickets in our 3 balls. I was given out off a “bump ball” without scoring, even though I had survived nearly four overs, not that I was likely to score a century!

   I got home for 6.15 and did well over three hours prep.

Say ye to the righteous, that it shall be well with them: for they shall eat the fruit of their doings. Isaiah 3:10


   We finished Strife in English today. In Geog. Mr. Whalley showed us a film strip on Transportation and Deposition.

   At dinner time I played cricket and scored 0, 11, 23, 0.

I broke my record score twice.

   In Chemistry we had a short test. I did not come home on the Special Bus.

   Tonight I did homework and looked through my Remove C and U.M.D. note-books. Our exams start on June 23rd. I do so hope that I shall do better than previous years, especially as the exams are on a School Certificate standard.

And David behaved himself in all his ways: and the LORD was with him. 1 Samuel 18:14


   I have been looking forward to today for ages now. My second broadcast! From 1.30 to about 4.30 4.30 we did rehearsals, signed autographs & had tea.

   [I used my new Autograph Book and it has been signed by David Scott-Daniell (editor), Peggy Bacon (producer), Michael Grayson (announcer), Patrick Wells, Brenda Radbourne, David R. Brown (visitor), Roger Smallwood, Alan Read (visitor), Peter Shaw, Jean Robertson, Dexter J.E. Ladbrooke, Gillian Evans, Keith Aldritt, G.R. Seaman (visitor), Maureen Hartnell, Lorna E. Bradshaw, Patricia Calder, John R.C. Young (visitor), Wendy M. Smith, Mavis J. Hotter, Rosalie Grayson, Jean M. Lester, H.M. Oakley (visitor) and Philip Dudley, The only person who didn’t sign my autograph book was Lorna Martin. I met John Young, David Brown, Jean Lester and Brenda Radbourne on “Midland Magazine” No. 24 in November.]

   The broadcast was from Studio 2. I was fourth on the programme, reading “The Cat and the Mouse”, a short story by a John Draper. It lasted about one minute or just over. I didn’t make any mistakes fortunately.

   Michael Grayson [who is in V.B. at school] introduced the programme. As in my previous broadcast, we each got up from our seats just before the person in front of us finished. Really, broadcasting is great fun. Nick Capaldi, playing his Accordion, finished the programme [and wrote his autograph on a separate page. Before leaving the studio] I received a cheque for 10/6d.

Fear not, I will help thee. Isaiah 41:13


   After breakfast this morning Bob and I cycled along the Stratford Road towards Henley-in-Arden as far as Liveridge Hill.

   During the afternoon I did quite a lot of prep.

   This evening I cut part of the lawn and watered the garden. With the hot weather continuing, all the plants are growing rapidly and several are now in flower. We could do with some rain however.

Being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus. Romans 3:24


   In Physics today we had a test. I had Choir practice as usual at 12.30pm.

   In Chemistry I worked with Hopkins. Nothing else happened.

   This evening I did homework until 8.0pm then played out for an hour.

   The heat wave is still continuing. So far it has been the hottest June since 1940.

For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s. 1 Corinthians 6:20


   As usual, nothing much happened at school today and I came straight home. [After dinner I went to the Midland Bank to pay in my cheque from the B.B.C. and an extra £1.] Apart from going down the village, and reading a comic, I spent all the afternoon doing prep.

   It rained at about 3.30 & altogether it looks as though the heat-wave has come to an end.

   This evening I went to Cubs as usual then when I got back, listened to Episode 2 of H.G. Wells’ The War of the Worlds.

I will heal their backsliding, I will love them freely: for mine anger is turned away from him. Hosea 14:4


   It has rained quite heavily at intervals today, though it stayed off for the dinner hour and enabled us to play cricket.

   Today Elson [who is in the Lower Modern Languages Division] took five wickets in five balls & a couple more hat-tricks besides. Haworth equalled the record score of 34 until I bowled him.

   In English today we did some revision of grammar & likewise in French. I came home on the S.B.

   This evening I have done English and some Geography, taken down weather readings and sorted out the waste paper.

Happy art thou, O Israel: who is like unto thee, O people saved by the LORD, the shield of thy help. Deuteronomy 33:29


   At school nothing happened today.

   This afternoon I played for the House 2nd XI v Biggs’ 2nd XI. We put Biggs’ in to bat & they scored 90. I took one catch. We put up a good first wicket stand but there was a collapse. I went in No. 9 and still 40 runs were needed. I suddenly decided that the bowling was not all it should have been & hit 24 (17 in one over). This included five fours. [Graham] Tayar, after a good innings, was eventually out at the other end, but Hughes came in and made the winning hit & we had won by 2 wickets! My (very lucky) 24 not out was the highest score in the match.

   The 1st team won by six wickets. My scores this season are now 4 n.o., 0, 5, 0, 24 n.o.

I have trusted ... in the LORD. Psalm 26:1


   Nothing at all happened today at school [except that the cricketing feat of yesterday is being talked about. It will become something of a legend, and when a West Indian lady named Mrs. Lara becomes pregnant, and envisages for her son a great career in cricket, she knows exactly what to call him].

   This evening after I had done my homework I read part of Oliver Philpot’s Stolen Journey [which I asked Acocks Green Public Library to get for me]. Oliver Philpot was the third man in the “Wooden Horse” escape.

Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace: and the God of love and peace shall be with you. 2 Corinthians 13:11


   We had a French test this morning but nothing much else happened at school. I came home through town.

   After dinner I spent the afternoon selling a book of Gala tickets in the village. The Annual Gala is at Handsworth Park on Saturday July 1st.

   This evening I listened to a special programme called “The Sounds of Time, 1934–59”.

And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth. Matthew 28:18


   All this morning I spent in the garden cutting the lawn, then this afternoon it rained so I wrote up four or five pages of Chemistry notes.

   This evening I took Ginger for a walk and then pressed a wild flower for my collection.

And for their sakes I sanctify Myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth. John 17:19


   This morning the S.B., after taking us up to the Girls’ School entrance, turned round and [then] took us to the University.

   With the exception of French, all today’s periods have been devoted to “swotting”. Last year the exams were just a “faint speck on the horizon” — now they loom ahead like a great big mountain, black & ugly. What fatuous verbosity! Perhaps it’s the heat. It has been hot again today, so this evening I skipped prep. and Dad and I finished cutting the left side of the lawn. It looks lovely now: how different from the mud of a few months back!

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear. Psalm 46:1–2


   We revised again all day at school. I came home through town and I spent half an hour on the roof at Lewis’s, from where one can see all over Birmingham, as far as the Lickey Hills and the Clent Hills. It really is a magnificent view. It would have been better at the time but for the continual drift of smoke over the city. The University Tower stands out prominently of course & through a telescope I could just about distinguish the time by it.

   This afternoon I did some prep, then went down the village with Mam. Tonight I went to Cubs as usual.

Let them also that love Thy name be joyful in Thee. Psalm 5:11


   Nothing much happened today. The whole form had to stay in at 3.45 for Mr. Gosling [whom we had offended in French] and I did not get home until 5.30pm. It was raining heavily.

   Tonight I spent at least three hours doing homework, mainly doing History. I wrote three pages of notes.

Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. Proverbs 3:5


   This morning Trevor Hopkins & I got an impot. from Mr. Whalley for having no Atlas. Trevor finished his 20 lines & I had done 7 but we must have looked guilty & he asked to see the lines. When we showed a blank sheet, he failed to be taken in & asked for the other sheet of paper. And that was how we had to start all over again.

   In J.T.C. I drilled a squad & then for the second half we had L.M.G., holding and aiming.

   Against Nicholson’s 2nd XI this afternoon we scored 135 (Tayer 40, me? 0, bowled Power) and they were all out for 73 so we won by 62 runs. The 1st XI won by 2 wickets.

His understanding is infinite. Psalm 147:5


   Today the exams started with English Literature and Appreciation in Big School from 9.30 to 12.0am [sic]. I think I did a little better than I expected, but in the Geography this afternoon I did not quite finish a question on the Weald.

The LORD recompense thy work, and a full reward be given thee of the LORD God of Israel, under whose wings thou art come to trust. Ruth 2:12


   No exams today and only two periods of work.

   After break we took chairs down to Eastern Road for the Old Eds. match. This afternoon I took Clarice and Julia to the match. School batting first were all out for 139. The Old Edwardians then made 21 without loss. The rain poured heavily then & stopped play.

   Everyone had tea free in the big marquee. This included egg sandwiches, three cakes, strawberries and cream & lemonade or tea.

For the LORD is a God of knowledge, and by Him actions are weighed. 1 Samuel 2:3


   We took Ginger for a run in the park before breakfast this morning. Later, I read the papers, went down the village on the bike, and cut part of the lawn.

   This afternoon we went to the Mission. Mr. Ron Tillesley was the speaker. [I like him best of all the speakers we have. He speaks very powerfully without notes; he moves about as he talks and his face shines].

   Tonight I washed up & took down the latest weather figures [from the Birmingham Mail] amongst other things.

   My new bike is at last taking shape. It now has a saddle, chain and brakes, all the necessary requirements in fact.

For Thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world. John 17:24


   This morning we had Geometry in Big School from 9.30 to 12.0. I don’t think I did too badly. I should get 50% anyway.

   At 12.25pm there was a School Choir practice as usual.

   This afternoon we had [the] English exam from 1.45 to 4.15. I came home on the 1A bus with John.

   This evening after reading a book & doing some Algebra revision, Dad & I fixed the front brake on my bike and then I launched it by cycling up the road once.

The LORD God is my strength, and He will make my feet like hinds’ feet, and He will make me to walk upon mine high places. Habakkuk 3:19


   We had our Algebra examination this morning from 9.30 to 11.30. I did rather disappointingly though. We had normal lessons [Chemistry and Maths] for the last two periods.

   This afternoon I did some revision and took Ginger for a walk down the village.

   Tonight there was the Musical Society Concert [given by choir, orchestra and soloists] in Big School at 7.30pm. The Choir sang three items, The Seekers (Geo. Dyson) & Consecration (Leonard Blake) & Rule Britannia (Arne, Arr. Humphrey Searle).

   Other items included [to begin with, the orchestra playing] Mozart’s Magic Flute Overture & [later, the Rondo from his Piano] Concerto in E flat [K.271, played by T.F.H. Oxley]; Bach’s Trio-Sonata No. 3 in C [played by D.A. Wright on the organ]; & Inventions Nos. 6 & 14 [for piano, played by I.D. Thompson.

   Also on the piano A.D. Kirkby played The Golliwog’s Cake-Walk by Debussy, and there was a trumpet duet by Purcell played by A.J. Homer and D. Yetman. The concert ended with Rule Britannia. It was all a great success!]

The LORD God is my strength. Habakkuk 3:19


   Prayers are of course being held in the Quadrangle while the examinations are in progress in Big School.

   This morning we had our French exam which everyone agreed was very stiff. This afternoon we had Arithmetic which was not so bad. I may just about get 50% in the Maths.

   This evening I spent doing revision and I also blancoed my gaiters & belt and pressed my uniform. Tomorrow in J.T.C. we shall have an inspection.

Into Thine hand I commit my spirit: Thou hast redeemed me, O LORD God of truth. Psalm 31:5


   There was no exam today fortunately but worse still I heard I had got only 30% in the Geography exam. I am bottom of the block as well.

   In English the School Captain [G.F.B. Laughland] talked to us about the Korean situation. On Sunday Communist troops from N. Korea advanced into territory of the Korean Republic. The Security Council called for immediate cessation of hostilities. On Monday the S. Korea Govt. was reported to have left Seoul, then on Tuesday, President Truman ordered U.S.A. air & sea forces to support the Korean Republic Govt. troops & to protect Formosa.

   I spent all afternoon and evening doing revision.

God comforted us. 2 Corinthians 7:6


   This morning we had a 2½ hour History exam & I doubt whether I shall get 20%.

   At dinner time Donald & I went hunting for wild flowers for my collection & we got quite a few. [I am pressing them in the book I have made for them].

   We had normal lessons as usual this afternoon. I came home on the Special Bus.

   Tonight I have done more revision & pressed my wild flowers. It has been a lovely day & in the garden there are lots of flowers including roses, poppies, cornflowers, stocks, feather-few [sic, feverfew], geraniums [i.e. pelargoniums] and others.

   My letter was published in this week’s The Scout under “Pack News”.

I will yet praise Thee more and more. Psalm 7:14

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webwork by Jim Nagel at Abbey Press, Glastonbury — this edition published 2007-06-30