Jim Campbell
Primary: 1941-48
Secondary: 1948-54
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My father had been at the Morgan. I think there was some connection with the orphan bit as his father had died while the family (3 brothers and a sister) were still very young. So that's where I and my younger sister, Sheila, and much later a young brother, Colin, went. I think I started in 1941. The regime at that time in the tin annexe consisted of the misses McDougall and Miss Dye, who coincidentally was at school with my dad. Was there a Miss Smith too? (Does anyone recall paying the invoices for the fees at the office?)

There was a war on and gas masks had to be worn and air-raid drills carried out. We had slates to write on and slate pencils to write with. Later we had inkwells and pens with "nibs" and were supposed to become adept with 'joined writing' using a sloping hand. I remember getting a fountain pen for passing my 'quallies" and how it leaked all over my shirt. (There was such a fuss when the "Biro" became available - "it would ruin handwriting" and its use was banned for a while!)

My handwriting was never very good anyway as my brain worked faster than I could write. I remember getting the belt from Charlie Shiach for trying a new way of writing "of". He was one of the postwar influx of newly-trained teachers who I really believe had been 'brutalised' by their experiences and the discipline imposed upon them? Another in the same mould was Baldie Baxter although I probably more deserved the belting that he dished out! Mr Montgomery was much more humane in his approach, and could be easily made to digress with his war stories and on the subject of Scottish Nationalism.

I never really did much good at the Morgan. I got a highers in English and Art. I can remember being pretty good at Art and taking to walking about with paint brushes in my shirt pocket where others carried pens. (In her autobiography, Christine Fitzwalter mentioned a picture still in her possession with "ink pot, quill etc" - perhaps she will recognise some of these still life props.)

I was in the Air Training Corps as I had ambitions to fly Spitfires and really thought it would happen ... Anyway, I went off happily to aircrew selection and was quite thrown to be told I was medically unfit! Of course I had to do the National Service thing - as a teleprinter operator. At least I got keyboard skills that solved the problem of brain- and handwriting-speed!

In the course of doing the national service thing I met a young woman and we got married. We had quite a struggle earning a living after the RAF. I convinced us it would be better if we got back to Scotland from the Midlands of England where we were then living. We were able to make a living, bought a house in Cupar but then things went a bit 'pear-shaped' and we made the decision to migrate to Western Australia, with our 6 children. At the time there was another recession in the UK, incorporating the inevitable credit squeeze and much talk about the need for negative growth.(!!!)

I think that we can all say that we really started living from that day in August 1972 when we landed at Perth Airport. I got a very-well paid job within 3 days and we were able to eventually send all the children to university or equivalent - our eldest started at WA Uni in January 1973 at age 16. My wife Jean also went to uni., qualified as a teacher and went on to get her M.Ed.

We have never been back to the UK. Over the years our children moved to different parts of Australia, grandchildren came along and we had no reason to return, and every reason to see more of Australia.

At the tender age of 60, I finally was able to undertake flying training and to qualify as a pilot with the local Royal Aero Club. We also later bought an aeroplane, which we fly very regularly and have explored most of the State of WA in it.

Mount Nasura, Western Australia, May, 2011