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Roy O'Neill

Dave Brittain writes:

Dear Briggensians,

It is with the deepest regret and sadness that I have to tell you your President, Roy O'Neill, passed away in the early hours of this morning, 18th November 2011.

His wife, Margaret, and sons Julian and Nicholas were with him.

This is the end of a very special relationship Roy had with Brigg Grammar School and Sir John Nelthorpe School of loyalty, service and dedication the like of which may never be repeated.

I did pass on the good wishes of Briggensians after my first notice and now I am certain we all join together in passing on our condolences to Margaret and the family.

Further information is now available:

The funeral was a private family funeral on Monday 28th November 2011.

There will be a Thanksgiving Service for those wishing to pay their respect, held in St. John's Church, Brigg at 2.00 PM on Friday, 9th December 2011.

Any donations left at the church will be divided between Cancer Research and the British Heart Foundation. Those wishing to donate specifically to the British Heart Foundation in memory of Roy can do so through

Brian Taylor

19 Barley Close


Brigg DN20 9RU

Or on the web site at

Those wishing to donate specifically to Cancer Research UK in memory of Roy can do so at

or telephone: 0300 123 1864

If you have a Brigg schools connection but aren't a member, why not join the Briggensians?arrow

Best Wishes to Barbara Kernon!

Tennis Court

Dave Brittain writes:

Fellow Briggensians, I thought you might like to know that our Briggensians' Secretary, Barbara Kernon, has suffered a heart attack and is awaiting a triple bypass.

If all goes according to plan then she should be in for surgery on 11th October and I am sure you would wish to join with me in wishing her a speedy recovery from the operation and a return to better health.

Barbara has reluctantly decided that she should step down from her Briggensian duties and concentrate on getting better.

Helen Cresswell will take over the general secretarial duties and Donna Fryer will become the Dinner Secretary.

Barbara Kernon writes:

I've really enjoyed my years with the Briggensians and intend to remain on the committee. Dave sent out an email and I have received get well messages from all over the world but it is perhaps time I handed over to the younger ones.

Update: We understand Barbara is making an excellent recovery!

If you have a Brigg schools connection but aren't a member, why not join the Briggensians?arrow

Support Adam Linsley Running London Marathon for Macmillan

Adam Linsley Page

Adam Linsley, the trumpet player who was at SJN in the '80s, is running the London Marathon 2012 to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support. If you would like to sponsor him to raise money for this very worthy cause, go to

Adam writes that he would be very grateful for any donation whatever the amount. Good luck, Adam!

If you have a Brigg schools connection but aren't a member, why not join the Briggensians?arrow

Briggensians Meet in Edinburgh... and Sydney

Peter Wade

Peter Wade (1945-53) writes:

In January this year, my wife, Eileen, and I made one of our frequent visits to Edinburgh. Fortunately the weather at the time was kind to us. Whilst there we met up with Charlie and Marion Windass and John and Marguerite Sellars. We had a very pleasant lunch and spent the afternoon together. Most readers will know of Charlie Windass (1946-54) who was in School House with me. John Sellars (1945-53) was in Nelthorpe House and we both went up to Manchester University together. His wife Marguerite was at the High School at Brigg. I have been trying to persuade John to attend the Annual Dinner but with no success so far!

Andrew Brown writes:

A very unofficial but special Briggensians reunion. A few conditions – you had to have left at the end of year 5 in 1975, you had to have emigrated from the UK, and you had to be in Sydney, Australia on October 14th. As a consequence, only two could make it but they had a fantastic lunch at the famous Woolloomooloo Wharf. I've lived here for 24 years and Oliver Hughes was on his way back from a visit to the Rugby World Cup in NZ – "Hug" now lives in Dublin and has interests in a number of hostelries. Here's the evidence (or at least a small portion of it...!)

Sydney 2011

left: Andrew Brown, right: Oliver Hughes

To send us your news or details of reunions, use the e-mail address below.arrow

News from Briggensians - Geoff Fulger (1954-1959) writes:

Surviving the Boarding House in the 50s
... and Air Crashes, Bombs and Pirates: Half a Century at Sea!

Having recently stumbled across the "Briggensians" site what a flood of memories they revived.

As a boarder the "punishments" remain vivid such as the shoe cleaning details in the wee room attached to the boarding house, (memory prevents me from recalling the crimes that I committed!)

Tea in the boarding house at 1545 also stand out stuffing bread and dripping down our gullets at an alarming rate.

We had a four miles "out of bounds " rule which enforced an iron curtain around Brigg, a limit which we were not to exceed, but I recall many a time cycling to my aunts nursing home in Nettleton on a Wednesday or Saturday afternoons (twagging the compulsory attendance at the current football or cricket match!) just to have an afternoon of gluttony and music! Fellow boarders Martin B. Thomas and Thomas Frank accompanied me if I recall and on a few occasions we made it back just in time for "prep!"

If my memory serves me correctly our Masters were N.C Mathews (Slugg-headmaster); Bumper Knight; Doggy Barker; Viv Atkins: Jock McKendrick; Paddy Paisley: Jezza Bell; Tigga Richards: Digger Payne: Rufus Pratt; Gregory Peck: Gordon Hogg; Archie Moore; Jock Longden; Tinker Thumwood; Mr. Chips; Jonesey; Harry Pimlott; Jimmy Jarvis; Mr. Stinson; Pawn Butterworth; Woody and I am sure I have missed a couple!

We used to have a "general book" which was really a rough book which had to be signed when full, but underwent intense scrutiny to see in there was any usable space left in it before being issued with a new one.

Cross country runs used to consist of the "Brickyard Lane" run which was about 3 1/2 miles and the "Kettlewell" run which must have been close to 6 miles. Times taken varied upon a combination of how many illegal cigarettes one had smoked and athleticism. The "breaking the ice" swim on Sunday mornings in the old water boatman infested swimming pool used to be a daunting experience, but on the plus side the extra lie in (fifteen minutes) seemed like heaven in a warm bed, despite the dormitories being unheated.

All too quickly five years evaporated and I went to work as a Research Chemist Assistant in a local chemical research labs then in 1960 I signed indentures for a shipping company and to this day I am still a Master in the Merchant Navy!

My 51 years at sea have seen me weather a few storms but also see and partake in some incredible events.The Iran/Iraq war provided enough anecdotes to fill a book; my two airplane crashes on the same evening in Frankfurt while proceeding on leave should have put me off flying, but they were followed by two ditched helicopter landings in the paddy fields of Indonesia! Bomb attacks by both Iraqi and Iranian bombers on Christmas and Boxing Day should have have warned me not to sail in war zones, but I was in short supply of stories to tell my grandchildren!

Peacetime in Brasil was no better as local pirates drugged and robbed me of several thousand dollars while at anchor off Salvador, but I was informed of my good luck as the Norwegian Captain of the ship a few cables away had had his throat cut as well as being robbed!

The more fondly remembered times bring visions of Pacific sunsets, Dolphin families swimming alongside in tropical waters, Albatross following the ship for endless days around Cape Horn never once flapping their wings, just endless graceful gliding; countless men I have sailed with from far off lands, India, China, Malaysia, Australia, Thailand, Indonesia, Spain, Portugal, Africa, South America, USA, Iceland, Faroes and countless others, such a blend of cultures and religions.

Half a century later, I still am thankful of the education that Brigg gave me and recall those far off days as if they were yesterday.


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Remembering Briggensians Recently Lost

R W Porter LDS (BGS 1928-1935)

Mr Porter's daughter has informed us of his passing at the age of 93 and very kindly sent in a short account of his life along with three photos of different stages of his life at school, in the RAF and in later years.

Born on 11 January 1918 in Tattershall, Lincs, he was the eldest son of Bernard Porter, Farmer and Justice of the Peace, and Constance Mary Meggitt. He was educated at The (Sir John Nelthorpe) Grammar School in Brigg from 1928 to 1935 (representing the school in cricket and swimming), then at Leeds University School of Dentistry, graduating in 1940. [ see the full obituary and photographs... ]


To send us your news or details of reunions, use the e-mail address below.arrow

Send your news to and it will reach the Chairman and the Newsletter and Website editors.

Newsletters are in the Library section.


The Briggensians site will be handed over to another "minder" in 2012. Check back for the changes.