Monday, 19 January 2015

The history of Eton Wick School: 1939 - 1945

Eton Wick School 1939 - 1945

Initially the Eton Wick School and the evacuated London County Council (L.C.C.) children shared Eton Wick’s School premises, which resulted in overcrowding of available classrooms. A trial of sharing the day with Eton Wick children attending morning class and the L.C.C. attending afternoon class was put in place as a short term measure. This curtailment of education was found unsatisfactory and use of the Village Hall by the L.C.C. was the solution for return to all-day schooling. The Village Hall ceased to be used for schooling in July 1943.

April 14th 1941
Fortunately the local schools were on holiday as bombs and incendiaries fell in the district. Two incendiary bombs fell on Eton Wick school, one falling on the roof whilst the other fell through into the infants room where a cupboard was set on fire, doing slight damage.

“A number of incendiaries had dropped across the allotments below the school in Sheepcote Road. Searchlights were sweeping the sky in search of the enemy planes whose dull drone seemed to be continual. I rushed about the allotments piling soil on the burning bombs. Within minutes the flames would burn through the soil and the operation was repeated.

"It was on this night my father became Eton Wick's only air raid casualty. The school like most public buildings had a wall of sand bags about six feet high along the old buildings main wall. My father, an Air Raid Warden, was on duty near the school and could see the incendiaries burning inside the building. Realising that the blaze had to be tackled immediately he climbed onto the protective wall of sandbags and using one of the bags broke the window to gain entry. He then climbed through to extinguish the fires. On getting through the broken glass he cut his hand.

"After the fire was extinguished it was pointed out to him that all his effort to effect the entry was really unnecessary as the school door was always left unlocked for just such an emergency." (Frank Bond’s memories)

May 8/9th 1945 - Victory in Europe. The School closed for the two day National Holiday.

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