When the Hamleteers proved all conquering

They were the gold medal winners of their day - The Crome boys of Norwich in the 1940s and 50s.

Arms folded, heads held high, these boys were the champions – and as proud as punch.

More than 60 years after they won the cup allow me to introduce you to the Hamleteers – the boys from the old Crome School.

And it wasn't just football the Crome lads were good at – the other picture, thought to be taken in 1953, is the winning team at the Norwich Schools Athletics Championships.

They were the gold-medal winners of their day.

The pictures come from Maurice Kerry, who left school at the age of 15 and spent the next 50 years working for the bus company in Norwich.

Yes, that's half a century with one company – an achievement unlikely to be repeated in this day and age.

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'It was private, public and then private again and I worked in various offices around the city over the years,' he said.

Maurice still lives in Thorpe Hamlet and that's him, in the 1949 Crome cup-winning football team, on the left in the front row.

'I was only given this picture a few years ago and I can't remember what the cup was. Perhaps some of your readers can,' he said.

But he can remember most of the other lads in the picture who were part of that winning side.

He thinks they were: Roger Bullock, Brian Miller, Colin Seeley, John Philpot, Joe Eagle, David Stone, Geoffrey Goreham Hudson, Chapham and Hall.

'It was a sporty school as you can see from the photographs. We had four houses, Oak, Ash, Elm and Yew,' said Maurice, now retired at the age of 73 and married to Wendy with children James and Laura.

The Crome School for Boys and the Stuart School for Girls were on Telegraph Lane.

They later merged to form a mixed secondary modern school, and one which had many forward-thinking ideas before closing in 1970.

Watch this space for more pictures of the Crome – this time of the teachers showing just how tough they were!

If these photographs bring back any memories, or if you have others from the Crome or Stuart to share, drop me a line at Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich, NR1 1RE, or email me at derek.james@archant.co.uk