Durban Schools : Matriculation Classes

Taking a cue from the Glenwood Matric Class photo posted a while back, I thought of the idea of posting Durban School Matric classes over the years. I’ve cleared it with Allan Jackson and he liked the idea. It would also create a home for the photos as stuff tends to get hidden in various posts and many drift away from the original subject. Unfortunately to post a picture you will have to send it to Allan who will add it to the site. You can contact him via Contact Us. Please restrict the class photos to Durban Schools and Matrics only . Give the date and names if possible which will make it more interesting. No doubt the photos can and probably will, attract comment and it will be interesting to see what gets posted.

The first one I am posting is the Matric Class of 1954. That is the year I arrived back in Durban to live here until leaving in 2000. I can remember the late Eddie Barth was the Head Prefect. Being a junior then, one held these seniors in awe. I will add comment on some I knew and in later years as an Old Boy and Secretary of the Marist Old Boys Association met many of them in person.

Marist Brothers’ College St Henry’s Durban : Matriculation Class 1954.

Click on picture to enlarge.

Back Row: Picture Left to Right :
? , R Atkinson, H Schuurmans, Leo Gibson, R. de Billot, P Savage, C Kerdachi.

Front Row: R Nell, Jock O’Connor*, C. Paul, Edward Barth*, Rev. Brother Eugene*, J. Rock-Perring, Ed Petterson,
Roger Seymour, P du Toit.

* Deceased.

Names have been taken from a Marist Archive and what is posted may be incorrect. Please correct errors noted.

Brief notes: Jock O’Connor served as a lawyer virtually his whole working life with the firm, Browne Brodie. He managed the Pinetown branch for many years. Edward Barth took over the firm Medwoods from his father Alfred Barth. Edward built the firm up substantially. One remembers the Medwood’s vans being an olive/khaki colour green with the slogan “Around the Corner, Around the World”. Later Medwoods had the contract to move racehorses between Summerveld and the race courses in Durban and Pietermaritzburg.

Another interesting fact is that Edward’s mother, Maisie Barth negotiated the sale of David Don’s property in South Ridge Road called The Maze to the Marist Brothers when it came onto the market in the mid 1920s. David Don was member of the Natal Legislative Council, co director of Natal Estates and a noted bibliophile. His collection of Africana books and pamphlets were donated to the Durban Town Council in 1915 following his death. St Henry’s opened its doors in 1929 with the first classes being held in the house, the school buildings only being completed 1931/1932.

Continuing with this series here is the 1955 Matriculation Class. Click on photo to enlarge

What is interesting in this photo is that all the matriculants wearing the school blazer have a flash stitched to the top blazer pocket. This became a tradition in that all matric classes thereafter sewed a yellow flash to the top pocket. This must have been the first year of this trend which was not introduced “officially” as far as I know.

Of the class if I remember correctly Mike Parsons played Natal Cricket later. The late Julian Williamson studied for the priesthood.

I do not have the 1956 Matriculation Class photo but here is the next one, 1957. Click on photo to enlarge.

BACK ROW -Pat Trimborn, Gerald Byrne (D), Andre Smit (D), Henry Galea, Patrick Leeman (D) Kenneth Etheridge (D), Conell Starke (D)

THIRD ROW -Terence Riley (D), Siegfried Berger, Robert White, Peter Rhodes, Neil Groome (D), Thys de Waardt (D), John Starke, Edmund Browne,
Jack de Billot (D)

Second Row – Mike Pithouse (D), Neville Savage, George Evans (D) David Klein, Pierre Lavoipierre, Bruce McKune (D), John Butt (D), Walter Davey, George Reilly

Front Row – Stan Pretorius, Tony Formo (D), Percy Vorster, Brian Parsons (D), Tony Seneque, Raymond Jerome (D)

D Deceased

Pierre Lavoipierre entered the priesthood and served the Durban diocese. He officiated at my wedding in 1970! Pat Trimborn son of Max trimborn (of Comrades fame) played cricket for SA, Stan Pretorius was only 15 in his Matric year!!!

Matric Class 1958

Back : Mick Parker* Clive Phipson Brian Shipton

Mid : Colin Andrew Mike Welman Peter Erlich Roger Falconer Denis Hersey A Smith Dave Nozaic

Front: Eddie McPetrie* Edward Barbieri Joseph Pieri Roger Markham M de Broglio Edward Hughes* A Dabrowski Daniel Kline Willi Scherzer

*Deceased to my knowledge.

Clive Phipson became a world ice skating champion. Joe Pieri was “knighted” by the Italian Government some years ago for his work with the Italian community in KwaZulu Natal. For many years he was very involved with the Juventus Soccer Team associated with the Italian Club in KZN.

Matric Class 1959

Back – Eric Dokoupil, Robin Pascal, Edward King, Camillo Fiore, Kenneth McLennan, Michael Lawson, A Doncy,
Middle – Derek Jones, Neville Kerdachi, David Gibson, Lawrence Gibson, Terence Fripp, Patrick Guilfoyle, Robert Archibald, Colin Andrews, R Beattie
Front– Ronald Fowler, Alan Miller, J Pedersen, Clive Pitt, Roderick O’Connor, David Hayden, Michael Rhodes, Owen Hughes, Lawrence Farr.

I am including a photo of the the 1959 1st Cricket XI. This team had the honour of beating Durban High School at cricket the year the star studded DHS side included players like Barry Richards and Lee Irvine. I think it was the first time St. Henry’s had beaten DHS and recall that on that Monday assembly, the team received a special accolade from the boys on their achievement. Lawrence Gibson was captain.

St Henry’s First Cricket XI 1959

Back Row: Gordon McLoughlin*, Brian Privett*, Alan Miller*, Patrick Guilfoyle, Barry Pedersen* John Kennedy (Scorer)

Seated : Jack Waldman, Tom Davis Lawrence Gibson, Rev Brother Marcellin (Coach), Anthony Hortop, Clive Pitt, Creigh Kenton.

* Deceased

Matriculation Class 1960

This my “first” Matric Class and was my “ Annus Horribilis”. To explain. Came the year end results and I was notified that I had not passed. I recall being away on holiday and my late sister telegrammed me with the bad news. The holiday was cut short and I returned to Durban. I remember immediately on getting back I had to decide what I was going to do so my mother and I made an appointment with the Principal, Brother Ephrem. We sat with him in his office and he laid down the choices available. Ask for a remark but if the result remained the same, I would not be accepted to repeat the year. Rewrite the examination in April and again if I did not pass I would not be able to come back to St. Henry’s. The last option was repeat the full year in 1961. Two in the class opted to repeat the year, Richard Perry and myself. In later years I was told that only five in the class had passed. I have never been able to confirm this and sadly this class had a reunion in 1961 and never again. I repeated Matric in 1961 and passed with a University Pass. I often wonder if I should not have gone for a remark but that is water under the bridge now.

Back Row: Fred Brown, Richard Perry, Denis Brown, Derek Jones , Peter Warby, Michael Sommer,
Chris Proctor , Ronald Rosseau*

Mid Row: Lester Coelen, Denis Phipson, Barry Pedersen*, Simon Noome, Paul Holden,
John Hughes*, Patrick Homan, John Summerton, Raymond Ambrosini

Front Row: Camillo Fiore, Peter Gibb*, Colin Hebrard, Rev. Brother Ephrem *(Principal),
John Vos (Head Boy) , Rev. Brother Marcellin (Class Teacher) , Chris Garvin, Arnold van Hest*,
Derek Wilkes

Ground : Emmanuel de Passos, Michael Byrne, Creigh Kenton, Gerald Buttigieg, Clive Hook*
* Deceased
As I said this class dispersed and we never got together again. Emmanuel de Passos was ordained a priest and is now in semi retirement at his old Chatsworth parish. Lester was Penny Coelen’s brother.

Matriculation Class 1961.

My “second” Matric was hard graft when I think back. In the languages all the set work books were different. Matric for the JMB exam was in a sense a two year course, Standard 9 and Standard 10. Set work books covered in Std 9 were carried over to Std 10 with additional ones added. This was for all languages. The other subjects had the same content. So I had to pick up on all the setwork books that the Std 9 had had.

Back Row: Warren Myers, Mike Hennessy, John McKinnon, Paul Smits, John O’Connor*, Ian Brennan*

2nd Row: Bryan Summers*, Laurence Olivier, Dave Haskins, John Lander*, Peter Smorenburg*, Peter Olivier*, John Shelton, Ray Martin*

3rd Row: Dennis Larriviere, Michael Haynes, Robin Soanes, John Kennedy, Rev Brother Marcellin (Class Teacher), Chris Wilkinson, Ian Halliday, Richard Perry, Erwin Rohrs

Ground: Gerald Buttigieg, Norman Taylor*, Anthony Hortop, Jack Waldman, Dunstan Browne.
* Deceased
Click on photos to enlarge.

Dunstan Browne was the leader of the 60’s band Dunny and the Showmen. Anthony “Toppy” Hortop became a teacher and taught at Glenwood for many years.
This year ended my schooling with St Henry’s which covered the period 1954 to 1961. Unfortunately I did not get class photos of my early years there but some of the boys in this class were with me since 1954.

Durban Girls’ High School Matriculation Class 1966

DGHS Matric 1966

Back Row: Janet ?, Michelle Hart, Beaulah Haddow, Lynette ?, Dawn ?
Mid: Sandra Band, Sandra Sharkey, Marianne Willemse, Cynthia ?, Anida Clarke, ?? , Pam Lusted, Val Downard.
Seated: Diana Christie, Phillipa Hirsh, Lindsay ?, Dacia Ellery, Mrs Little, Susan ?, Wendy ?, Esther ?, Louise Weerheim.

I have no names for this DGHS Class of 1962.

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17 Responses

  1. Mark Campbell
    | Reply

    Hi Gerald.
    Many thanks for the St Henry’s Matric Class photos. As an old boy of the school, albeit of a later vintage (1976), they certainly struck a chord. But what was most interesting was seeing my late Uncle Leo Gibson in the Class of 1954. You may well remember his brother Lawrence who matriculated in 1959.

  2. Gerald Buttigieg
    | Reply

    Hi Mark
    I’ll take a guess and say you must be related to Brian Campbell, my senior by some years. I remember the Gibsons well. Leo as a junior but Lawrence (Snowy) was a year or two older than me. In my time 1954 to 1961, the Gibsons were very involved with the school. Mr Gibson (senior) was always present at the school sports which was a well run event. I recall it was always on the first Saturday in September. The Gibson lived in Waynes Avenue off Botanic Gardens Road. Mrs Gibson used to teach Accounting if I recall. Boys who dropped Latin in Matric, had to take another subject and those that took accounting had to attend lessons privately.
    I will add more Matric photos up to 1961, the year I left.

  3. Mark Campbell
    | Reply

    Hi Gerald.
    You are most well-informed about the family. I am Brian Campbell’s son and my Mom was Wendy, the eldest of Arthur and Angela Gibson. Mom passed away in 1995 but Dad is still going strong (83). You will be interested that my gran, Angela the Accounting teacher, was the first woman to graduate with a B. Comm from the University of Natal.
    Take care.

  4. Gerald Buttigieg
    | Reply

    Hi Mark
    I did not know that fact about Angela Gibson. First names were hardly used in my time as seniors were always Mr or Mrs So and so. Arthur Gibson I think was Durban’s Mayoral Secretary but not sure of that.

  5. Mark Campbell
    | Reply

    Good day Gerald.
    Again, many thanks for the photos that you have posted. John Lander was a cousin of my Mom. I really enjoyed the tales of your Matric years. It would be interesting to know if only 5 of the Class of 1960 passed. Regardless, it certainly seems as though passing was a lot more difficult then it is now, or even in my time.

  6. Gerald Buttigieg
    | Reply

    Hi Mark
    John, he passed away some years ago, and I were in the same class in 1954 if I remember. So were a couple of others in my second Matric. It was not unusual to repeat classes in those days. From what I understand, the JMB Matric was a cut above the Senior Certificate. What astounds me these days is the number of A’s learners (pupils in my day) achieve. To get 5,6, 7 A’s in Matric was unheard of or very very rare. Results were not published in the newspapers so the 1960 Matric remains a mystery.

  7. Gerald
    | Reply

    Hi There
    I received this photo of the Grosvenor Matric Class 1962 from Rodney Tilley now resident in Australia. I am posting it for interest so the Grosvenor guys will have to fill in the names. I only recognise two in the picture. One is the Head Boy Errol Jones sitting between the Heads and I think the late Martin East, second row second in from the right. Rodney Tilley is back row extreme left. Over to others in the class.

  8. Frank Beeton
    | Reply

    FLTR Back to Front: Rodney Tilley, R. Gibb, Herman van de Meer, Arie Dorland, Graham. Madden, Eric Bloem, Gerald Tait, Stan Gibbs, Alan Whittaker, John Thompson, B. Greig, James Donaldson, Martin East, Pat Heslop, Peter Dicks, Wolfgang Martinick, Eric Hansen, Mr. D. J. Scholtz, Errol Jones, Mr. C.F.S. van Reenen, Peter Godsell, Mr. Danny Verster, Ronald Norris, Sidney Dullisear, Donald Sloley, Robert “Flea” Henderson, Clive Hunter, Keith Titmuss, Theo Kenton, J. Etsebeth, Noel Frederic. Hope I’ve got most of the first names right ( I was in the 1963 Matric class), if Keith Titmuss sees this he can give chapter and verse as he was in this class!

  9. Gerald Buttigieg
    | Reply

    Thanks Frank I knew you would chime in. I will tell Rodney as his memory was not as good as yours. I thought that was Theo Kenton as I am a long time friend of his cousin, Creigh and I have met him somewhere along the line. Well done on memorising all of them.

  10. Frank Beeton
    | Reply

    Thanks Gerald but I can’t take all the credit! I have a copy of the 1962 GBHS school mag which contains the same photo with surnames and initials provided, so that part was easy. Then I called my classmate Tiny Fourie and we put our heads together on the first names, but some still eluded us. However, I am sure that Rodney or Keith can fill in the blanks and correct any that we didn’t get right. Please say Hi to Rodney for us.

  11. Gerald Buttigieg
    | Reply

    Hi Frank
    My wife is Barrie Black who lived in Nicoll Road and next door to Rodney in Nirvana Road. She knew Tiny.

  12. Keith Titmuss
    | Reply

    Hello Frank, I’m so pleased you posted the class photo. Go to the top of the class! Every name correct. They were all a good bunch of guys. I have a copy in one of my albums. I remember Rodney Tilley very well. Gerald Tait was a life long friend. I met him in Std. one at Fynnland School….sadly he passed away several years ago. Jan Etsebeth was also a good friend of mine. It’s a strange thing that besides Gerald Tait and Jan Etsebeth, I never met any of the other chaps after leaving school.
    Thanks again…..Keith Titmuss

  13. Gerald Buttigieg
    | Reply

    Frank Beeton has sent me the picture of the 1963 Grosvenor Boys’ High 10A Matric Class. Apparently there was also a Matric 10B Class but he does not have that one. If anybody has it and would like to add it, mention you have it in a “Reply ” and I will contact you. Here is Frank’s submission and with all names as well. Thanks Franks.

    David “Mouse” Johnstone, Brian Widdowson, Mickey Clark, Gerben “Benny” Eikenaar*, Frank Beeton, Michael Growdon*, Donald Allan*, John Williams, John Lance Smith, Barry Wheller, Kjell Wilhelm Olsen, Nolan Goldstone, Colin Craig*, Maric Glaser, Evered Metzler, Mr. Wesley Bastiaans, James Auld (Head Boy), Colin Barnett*, Chris Beekman, David Canning.

    *= Known deceased.

    If I recall correctly David Canning became the Editor of The Mercury.

  14. Gerald Buttigieg
    | Reply

    The 1963 Grosvenor Boys’ High Matriculation Class 10B photo at Grosvenor Boys’ High has been submitted. Some of the names are missing so if you recognise them please add in a reply. Thanks to Eric Brink who had the photo.

    Names (FLTR Back to Front):

    Eric Oxford, Roy Topham, Garth Wight, Rob Small, Eric Bloem, Derek du Plooy, Errol Nicholls, Eric Brink, Graham van Heerden, Eddie de Beer, Gerald Reed, Mr. Danny Verster, Perro James, Dickie von Brandis, Graham Pierce, Rob Morley.

    Note from Frank Beeton ” Unfortunately, we have not been able to identify A.N. Other third from left in the front row.
    Just to close the loop, there were some members of our 1963 cohort who were absent when the photos. They were Tiny Fourie, Les Hollington, Anton Nielsen, and Henry Roberts. None of these names ties in with A.N. Other mentioned above.”

    From Gerald: I recognise Eric Oxford who had a younger brother Rodney. Both played Hockey for the Gongs Hockey Club and I was a member as well. This was the late 60s and year 70s.

    A.N Other has been rectified as Eddie de Beer.

  15. Frank Beeton
    | Reply

    Tiny Fourie has identified “A.N. Other” as Eddie de Beer. Unfortunately that name did not appear in the list of “1963 Matrics” contained in the Order of Ceremony for Founder’s Day held on 29 July 1988 to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of our Matric Class. If anyone can shed some light on this “mystery” it would be greatly appreciated. BTW, Gerald, Tiny does remember Barrie Black, and David Canning was editor of the Mercury.

    • Graham Horn

      If it’s the Eddie de Beer I knew, then he matriculated in 1964. He and I were in the same class from Std 9 onwards if I recall correctly. We were both in 9B but went to 10A in 1964 along with a third guy (… Webster?)

  16. Jeannette Bisschoff
    | Reply

    Good day, I am looking for end of year photo for DGHS, 1979
    And Matric end of year photo DGHS 1980
    Thank you
    Jeannette Bisschoff nee van Heerden

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