Remembering Larkman larks

Were you at Larkman Lane school in Norwich of 60 years ago? If so, this picture could bring back from marvellous memories.

This school photograph is pinned to a wall above a computer on a wall in Oxford and the owner often wonders what ever happened to these little people.

It was taken in Norwich more than 60 years ago so the boys and girls, with their lives stretching out ahead of them, would now be 68/9 years old.

They were members of Mrs Walker's class in 1950/1 at Larkman Lane School – pupils who would see some amazing changes take place in the decades that lay ahead.

These children wouldn't have had a television in the house, let alone a mobile phone in their pocket, and we still had a king.


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'I often study the faces and wonder where they all went and what happened to them over the years,' says Jan Chalmers, then Skitmore, who is in the centre on the back row.

The Larkman Lane School in the 1950s was an infant and junior school.

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'I used to get to it by walking from Friends Road, West Earlham Estate, up Cadge Road and just before Clarkson Road there was a loke on the left that took you to the school grounds,' recalled Jan.

'Just after the photo was taken the new primary school, Norwich Earlham Junior opened and I along with many others in the picture were transferred.

'I remember being very happy at Larkman with only one awful thing and that was dry minced mutton with boiled potatoes for lunch.

'I hated that so much and remember scraping it into my handkerchief and when I got the chance shaking it into the garden of one of the houses which backed onto the school fields,' she said.

'If kids were unable to eat everything at lunch they sat with it in front of them for a long time and that was the worst thing ever.'

In general Jan remembers it as a good school with a swimming pool and the opportunity for dance lessons.

'I wonder if others have some rose spectacled memories. I just wondered what happened to everyone?' she asked.

Jan went on to have a career in nursing and after completing her training at the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital in the 1960s moved away. She now lives at Oxford.

If you are in the picture and have memories of Larkman Lane email me at derek.james@archant.co.uk or drop me a line at Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich, NR1 1RE.

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