January 1963

The photo shows a Staff vs. Pupils hockey match.  It was the coldest winter for 223 years; a record broken in 1982 when the pond was once again a venue for skating.

(photo copied from the 1963 College Magazine)

"The pic of the frozen pond was taken in January '63.  I know I was there when the picture was taken and may be the left-hand one of the three spectators in the foreground.  I remember that we were offered the chance to make ice skates in metalwork lessons if we wanted.  Surprisingly, only about half a dozen of us did, and we duly sawed, drilled and brazed these skates, which fitted on the bottom of our rugby boots after the nailed cork studs were pulled out.  We started to learn to skate on the pond by pushing a dining chair round in front of us.  However, the real result came when we were told we could skate in games lessons, while everyone else was having to go on x-country runs or suffer the gym because the Park was too frozen for rugby etc."

"I think it was Mr Davitte and Mr Brand who purloined the minibus on Sunday afternoons and took us to Diss Mere on a couple of occasions. It was big enough to have a 440 yard (400 metres, young 'uns) track marked out on it for speed skating. It beat going on a Sunday walk, anyway!  Strangely enough, I still go skating when Welney Wash freezes in the winter - there are several miles of ice to go at there (as you can probably guess, I don't bother with ice rinks ...). However, the state of my knee and ankle joints these days precludes any fancy stuff."

Alan Dean

Another shot of Staff vs. Pupils match.  Mr Keith Davitte is in the centre of the photo, with perhaps Roger Goodwin at left?

(photo from Keith Davitte)

Jim Douglas on what looks like a pair of professional skates.

(photo from Chris Smith)

Dave Goman is definitely using a home-made pair.  He's being egged on by Arthur Palmer of Gloucester.

(photo from Chris Smith)

And away he goes!

(photo from Chris Smith)

Contents The Gallery Ice Skating   January 1963