Here’s why this class of ‘86 were in print

Can you spot yourself in this line-up of prizewinning students at Houghton School in 1986.
Can you spot yourself in this line-up of prizewinning students at Houghton School in 1986.

There were dozens of people in this photograph showing the good old days at Houghton School.

And there was one common denominator in your replies when we asked for memories of it.

Another Houghton photo for you to peruse, this time from 1980.

Another Houghton photo for you to peruse, this time from 1980.

Most of you were struggling to remember why the class of 1986 at Houghton School had lined up for the shot in the first place.

Well, we are happy to put you out of your misery.

This talented lot were all winners in the annual prizegiving ceremony and posed for the camera on the day they received their honours.

And when we posted the picture on social media, it reached more than 27,000 of you who were interested in finding out more.

I think I have the same newspaper clipping somewhere. So so long ago now! The time when basin cuts were in

David Lawson

Perhaps the reason some of you were struggling with the recollections was because the photograph in 1986 was portrait shaped.

So, for the first time in 31 years, we can show you the wide angled version of the shot in print - complete with extra pupils.

Those who took an interest in the social media post included David Lawson who said: “I think I have the same newspaper clipping somewhere. So so long ago now! The time when basin cuts were in.” Then he asked: “Actually can anyone remember why this picture was taken. There’s no teachers in or around it?”

Richard Armstrong said: “Think the ones we do recognise Susan Sewell Cloughton Amanda Barron Amanda Jane Smith are from band 1.”

The Class of 86 - some of the pupils who received prizes at their annual prize giving.

The Class of 86 - some of the pupils who received prizes at their annual prize giving.

Paul Stafford named some of the people in the picture and said “Mark Ramsay, David Crozer, Paul Simpson (Gower), Adam Wheatley. So many faces I can not name any more. But where am I!!!”

June Boath commented: “Saw our Paul Simpson straight away xxxxxxx” and Michael Hall said: “Some canny mops of hair haha.”

The hairstyles of the era certainly attracted plenty of comments, including from Avril Malcolm who said: “The hair styles are great. X”

Lynn Hayes reminisced: “Can see Sarra Clift, Paul Davis, Tracey Cox is right next to me, Brent McIver, Suzanne Belshaw.”

Paul Davis chipped in and said: “I think if I remember right there’s Michael Bates, Kevin Grant, Gillian Edwards, Karen Cheeseman, Angela Mason, RichardHunter.”

But Kathryn Jones added: “Oh good grief! I have absolutely no memory of even having that photo taken x.” Well Kathryn, here’s a few more details to get the memory jogging.

The headmaster was James Shurben and he gave a report to the prizegiving ceremony. He said Houghton School was facing the changes and problems of the future with every confidence.

He referred to the new and upcoming GCSE exams and said the school’s state of readiness for them was “as well as can be expected.”

Mr Shurben praised students for another successful year with traditions, good reputation and good practice in the school being maintained.

And he talked of examination results at all levels being good yet again, with a conscientous approach by staff in preparing the students so meticulously for the tests.

The photograph prompted a huge online response and the comments just kept on coming on social media.

Marie Rodgers said: “Blimey I recognise a few on the picture. Seems like yesterday.”

Plenty of you liked the post as well, including Helen Scaum, Ray Briggs, Lynne Smart, Julie Garland, Yvonne Pownall, Suzanne Moir, Cameron Cuthbertson, Julie Mustard and Claire-louise Parry.

So did Ian Belgian, Emma Louise Patterson, David Belshaw, Richard Armstrong, Kathryn Jones, Leon White and Val Raine.

Thanks to everyone who got involved and here’s a little more of a reminder of that prizegiving ceremony which triggered it all.

The Rector of Houghton at the time was Reverend Peter Fisher who presented the prizes.

He said: “Our community respects and honours this school not only for what it has done in the past but for what it will seek to do in the future and for the standards it maintains.”

And just to tempt you a little further, here is another Houghton School-linked photograph with faces for you to identify.

It shows students during a rehearsal for South Pacific in July 1980. Is there anyone you recognise?

Get in touch and let us know by emailing chris.cordner@jpress.co.uk.