Oakwood School history

The birth of Oakwood Primary School reaches back to the mid-1930s when land was being acquired by Hertfordshire County Council for future schools. From 1938 its site was being used by the girls of Beaumont School.

The publication of the 1944 Education Act included a requirement to raise the school leaving age from 14 to 15. In preparation for this thousands of concrete HORSA classroom huts (Hutting Operation for Raising School Age) were constructed, and Beaumont received three of these, one on the girls' field.

Meanwhile, at Fleetville School, which had its own temporary huts, as well as classes in the nursery building (now the Community Centre) several classes rose to 50 or more children. Parents complained vociferously and the authority launched its Fleetville Extension School: children living east of Beechwood Avenue attended the spare HORSA hut for the first time in 1957.

The new buildings for the permanent school were taken on in two phases from 1958, and at that point the new name, Oakwood, was announced.


All HORSA huts were basically the same, and although this one is not any of the Beaumont ones, you may be able to spot the Fleetville Extension School one in the background of a photo on this page.


Photo courtesy Herts Advertiser.

Summer 1966 Mrs Ransom
Oakwood summer 1966 Mrs Ransom

Photo courtesy Heather Macleod

Peter Jenkyns and Mrs Ransom
BACK ROW L-R: Sally Mobey, Stephen Kelly, Linda Blight, Sharon Street, Geoffrey Percy, Alan Ord, ? , Judy Storer, Helen Burnett, Philip Reid, Wendy Brett
THIRD ROW L-R: Michael Myers, Steven Good, Pauline Shepherd, Anna Pletersky, David …. , Robin Moulster, Sally Colins, Russell Perry, Peter Denholm
SECOND ROW L-R: Ann Attwood, Stella ….. , David Wiggs, David Cuthbert, Kevin Bishop, Nigel Pointer, Andrew Eames, Debbie Ryder? , Claire Bridger
FRONT ROW L-R: Gideon Saph, Gillian ….. , Heather Bruce, Angela Gunton

Photo added July 2020.

Summer 1969 Mrs Hall
Oakwood summer 1969 Mrs Hall

Photo courtesy Heather Macleod

Mrs Hall
BACK ROW L-R: Jacqueline ….. , Sharon Street, Peter Denholm, Jacqueline Cox, Larry Hillyard, Lisa ….. ? , ? , Jane Theobald, Louise Hastings, Sally Colins, Pauline Shepherd
SECOND ROW L-R: Wendy Brett, Roger Scott, Judy Storer, David ….. , Michael Myers, Susan Dalby, Pauline Smith, Julie Corbett, Russell Perry, ? , Berry Stannistreet, Linda Blight
FRONT ROW L-R: Gideon Saph, Angela Gunton, Kim Taylor, Ann Attwood, Robin Moulster, Heather Bruce, Cristine Sykes, Elizabeth Wilkins, Jeremy Brooks, Philip Abel, Raymond Curran, Sally Mobey

Photo added July 2020.

Summer 1970 Mrs Griffiths
Oakwood summer 1970 Mrs Griffiths

Photo courtesy Heather Macleod

Mrs Griffiths
BACK ROW L-R: Sally Collins, Jacqueline Cox, Lisa ….. , Sally Mobey, Judy Storer, Russell Perry, Steven Good, Michael Myers, Linda Blight, Susan Dalby
THIRD ROW L-R: Larry Hillyard, Steven Kelly, Philip Reid, Robin Moulster, Heather Bruce, Claire Bridger, Angela Gunton, Sharon Street, Wendy Brett, Dawn Harman
SECOND ROW L-R: Caroline ….. , Lindsay ….. , Andrew Eames, Nigel Pointer, Gideon Saph, Jeremy Brooks, Ann Attwood, Anna Pletersky, Gillian …..
FRONT ROW L-R: Peter Denholm, Kevin Bishop, Alun Ord, Gillian ….. , Pauline Shepherd

Photo added July 2020.

Summer 1967 Miss Wiseman
Oakwood summer 1967 Miss Wiseman

Photo courtesy Heather Macleod

Miss Wiseman
BACK ROW L-R: Linda Blight, Alun Ord, Geoffrey Percy, ? , Anna Pletersky
FOURTH ROW L-R: Stephen Kelly, Heather Bruce, Ann Attwood, Stephen ….. , Robin Moulster, Kevin Bishop, Sharon Street, Gillian ….. , Nigel Pointer
THIRD ROW L-R: Steven Good, Pauline Shepherd, Wendy Brett, David ….. , Russell Perry, Larry Hillyard, Judy Storer, Sally Collins, Peter Denholm
SECOND ROW L-R: Philip Reid, Raymond Curran, Angela Gunton, Michael Myers, Debbie ….. , Colin Sharp, Gillian Sinnott, ? , Stella ….. , Andrew Eames, Jeremy Brooks
FIRST ROW L-R: Claire Bridge, Helen Burnett, Gideon Saph, Claire Lucas, David Cuthbert, Sally Mobey, Julie Blenkinsopp

Photo added July 2020.

Summer 1965 Mrs Brown
Oakwood summer 1965 Mrs Brown

Head Peter Jenkins.

Photo added July 2020.

1979 Mrs Griffiths
Oakwood 1979 Mrs Griffiths

This photo has been in the collection for sometime but for some reason never made it to the website. The names attached to it are as follows:
Mrs Oliver (left)
Mrs Griffiths (right)
BACK ROW L-R: Jenny Wood, Martin Branch, Richard Tollyer, Gavin Lane, Alan Sockett, Peter McCathy, Robert Pletersky, Marino Pannasiddi, Maria Ponte
MIDDLE ROW L-R: Anthony Brand, Dudley Todd, Cheryl Williams, Nicola Holloway, Fiona Lund, Andrea Garmen, Siobhan Malik, Denise Hooper, Peter Tuck, Steven Ison
FRONT ROW L-R: Christine Thorpe, Caroline Fieds, Catherine McGowan, Karen Webber, Rachel Sanders, Jennifer Tomlinson, Nicola Forest, Joanna Scott, Yvette Beal

Photo added July 2020.

28 children enjoy a photo with Miss Wiseman in 1964 or 1965
Oakwood class with Mrs Wiseman

Photo courtesy Stephen Millar

A young class with Miss Wiseman. Do you recognise any of your friends, or yourself?

BACK ROW L-R: Nancy Dorman ; Christopher Rolfe ; ? ; ? ; Brenda Reid; Karen Bishop; Shena Way; ? ; Anne Staines
MIDDLE ROW L-R: Peter Jefferies; Mary Skilman; Janet Willoughby; ? ; Mark Small ; ? ; Christine Cheffers; Catherine Daniels; Paul Holmes; Miss Wiseman
FRONT ROW L-R: Gillian Holmes (Paul's sister); Christine Vaughan ; Simon Trott ; Stephen Millar ; Nick Hornby ; Roger Able; ? ; Chris Law ; Peter Spary ; ?

Photo added Jun 2020; details updated March 2021; details updated April 2021.

A Year 5 or 6 class in 1966

Photo courtesy Stephen Millar

Oakwood 1965

Head Peter Jenkyns (left); teacher David Sidnell (right).

BACK ROW L-R: Gail Newell, Nick Bull, Susan Marsom, Berwick Aspinall, David Jenkins
THIRD ROW L-R: Ann Sykes, Hazel Oliver, Susan Smith, Simon Morgan, Anthony Carter, David Hammond, Elaine Whitby, Colin Wilson, Heather Botterill, Lyn Boyland, Caroline Quirk, Susan Pymont
SECOND ROW L-R: Debra ….. , Carmelita Twigg, Sally Massey, Derek Pickles, Rod Potts, Christine Woods, David Everett, Nick Argent, Jenny Wheatley, Christine Vaughan, Sharon Carbonero
FIRST ROW L-R: Susan Galvin, Denise Blickett, Steve Millar, Pauline Naunton, Nick May, Andy Haycock, Terry Parsons, Nancy Dorman, Tony Meyrick, Anne Crawley, Margaret Wilkins
FRONT ROW (seated on floor) L-R: Barry Reed, Jane Hall, Chris Law

Photo added June 2020; details updated June 2020.

Oakwood fete in 1969
Fleetville 4A 1959 girls

Photo courtesy Chris Neighbour.

Oakwood was one of the new schools whose parents' association raised money to build a swimming school. No doubt the proceeds from this fete contributed to its construction, improvements or maintenance. The girl in this photo, wearing the spotted dress, is Sally Collins.

Oakwood fete in 1969: competing with passion!
Oakwood fete 1969

Photo courtesy Chris Neighbour.

School fetes were not only enjoyable, but gave focus to the fundraising campaigns. This event is from 1969.

L - R: ? ; Colin Blunden; Martin Gear; Terry Parsons.

Details updated April 2021.

An infants class in c1966
Oakwood infants 1966

Photo courtesy Mike Neighbour.

This photo was probably taken in 1966 or 1967, according to Anthony Meyrick who had, by then, left the school. He identifies Nigel Morgan, brother of Simon Morgan in his own class. The Infant Welfare Helper, back row left, is Mrs Winifred Neighbour.
Mrs Ransom
BACK ROW L-R: Winifred Neighbour, ? , Lisa Denholm, ? , ? , ? , ? , ? , ? ,
THIRD ROW L-R: ? , Tessa Sharp, ? , ? , ? , ? , ? , ? , ? , ?
FRONT ROW L-R: ? , ? , ? , ? , Nigel Morgan or Martine Frost, Gail Blenkinsopp , Caroline Gardner, ?

An infants class in c1968
Oakwood infants 1968

Photo courtesy Mike Neighbour.

Mrs Neighbour appears in this photo too, on the left of Mrs Dalby and Mrs Hobbs. Of the children, Janet Thrussell is back row extreme right. Helen Osei-Mensah is in the third row, second from left. Valerie Miller is on the far right of the same row.

An infants class in 1969/1970
Oakwood infants unknown

Photo courtesy Mike Neighbour.

Infant Welfare Helper Mrs Winifred Neighbour is with Mrs Dalby.
BACK ROW L-R: Second from right, Martine Frost.
MIDDLE ROW L-R: sixth from left Martin Groth; seventh from left Tracy Harms.
FRONT ROW L-R: second from left Fiona W……

Details updated April 2021.

An infants class in 1970 or 1971
Oakwood infants 1970 or 71

Photo courtesy Mike Neighbour.

This is the top infants class of Mrs Scott (right), and Mrs Winifred Neighbour as the Infants Welfare Helper. Just look at the highly polished floor!
BACK ROW L-R: Timothy Fraser, Arpita Bhose, ? , Sharon Barton, Richard Collins, Karen Gillan, Simon Drew, Richard Chandler, Gary Blight, John Allen, Simon [or Stephen] Baker or Andrew Pinnock ** , Christopher Page
THIRD ROW L-R: ? , Kevin Smith, ? , Ian Drake, Janette Dollamore, Olivia Argent, Janet Thrussell, Helen Osei-mensah, Alison Mills, Paul Winch, Timothy Bowen
SECOND ROW L-R: Susan Ferguson, Jennifer Johnson, Sarah Street, Andrew Denholm, Simon Pointer, Valerie Miller, Sally Humphreys, Caroline Wood, Jacqueline Harris, ? , Amanda Miles
FRONT ROW L-R: David Curran, Stephen Harman, Roy McGowan [or McGoohan], Gary Anscombe

** please confirm
It is also thought that Peter Hughes is in the line-up.

Y6 class in October 1961
Oakwood Y6 Oct 1961

Photo courtesy Janet Lang.

A full set of names was written on the back; hooray!
BACK ROW L-R: Terry Hill, Andrew Richardson, Stewart Andrews, John Kane, John Way, Trevor Eastwood, Peter Garvin, Stephen Oliver [but one name missing in this row]
THIRD ROW L-R: Ian Noble, Valerie Parsons, Janet Thorpe, Diana Marsh, Sally Carter, Sally Towler, Linda Crotty, Ann Newton, Mr David Sidnell
SECOND ROW L-R: Rosemary Smith, Toni Marie, Susan Final, Marilyn Twigg, Susan Green, Marion Peck, Elizabeth Byers, Angela Argent, Lona Faces
FRONT ROW L-R: David Williams, Mervyn Farmer, Robin Brown, John Davies, Nicholas Storer

Year 4 or 5 between 1965 and 1967
Oakwood Y4 or 5 1965 1967

Courtesy Tim Dain

BACK ROW L-R: Stephen Clark, ? , Timothy Smith, ?
THIRD ROW L-R: Peter Jenkyns [head teacher], ? , ? , Gary Booker, ? , ? , ? , ….. Potts, Andrew Curran, ? , Mrs Wiseman
SECOND ROW L-R: ? , Gillian Faces, ? , Janet Crawley, ? , ? , ? , Tina Sharp, ?
FRONT ROW L-R: Michael Gunton, possibly Hugh Hornby, ? , ? , ? , ? , ? , ? , ?
GROUND SEATED FRONT ROW L-R: ….. Gills, John Scales

Tim Dain writes "It would be wonderful if the unknowns could be identified, and to perhaps to hear from anyone who remembers me as Timothy Smith."

Updated December 2018; updated May 2021.

Year 6 class 1965
Oakwood 1965

Photo Stephen Spary

BACK ROW L-R: Martin Williams, Jimmy Dorman, Andrew Busby, Steven Henry, David Molster, Peter Bone, Peter King, Judith Burville-Holmes, Caroline Fuller, Keith Able, Alan Bruce, Penelope ?, Lesley Burville-Holmes, David Sidnell (teacher).
MIDDLE ROW L-R: Peter Bradbury, Peter Scales, Simon Blackwell, Pamela Fryatt, Hilary Wilding, Stephanie Crawshaw, Stephen Spary, Pete Wroe, Valerie Wykes, Michael Willoughby, Susan O'Dell, Barbara Gayle, Marcus Coyle.
FRONT ROW L-R: Nigel Wilkins, Stephen Cooper, Judith Percy, Jane Buck, Andrew Pearce, Patrick May, Anne Wheatley, Valerie Ayris, Mark Beadon, Rodney or Roderick ?, Jane Berry, Susan Baldwin, Anne Gear, Carol Mirams.
SEATED ON GRASS L-R: Jimmy Atter, Peter Fry.

Infants swimming group 1969
Oakwood inf swim group 1969

Photo courtesy Chris Neighbour

I guess this picture was taken before the lesson; afterwards hair can be all over the place, and the odd sock or shoe might have gone astray.

A further infants swimming group 1969
Oakwood further inf swim group 1969

Photo courtesy Chris Neighbour

Oh, and the children are looking excited; after the lesson they should be at least a little exhausted!

Swimming team 1969
Oakwood swim team 1969

Photo courtesy Chris Neighbour.

BACK ROW: ? , Veronica Cornish, Michael Myers, ? , Ian Gaylor
SECOND ROW: Carolin Gardner, ? ,Alison Bull, Christopher Peck, ? , Timothy Jeffreys, ? .
FIRST ROW L-R: ? , ? .

Details updated July 2020; updated August 2020.