Time capsule duo at school 50 years on

Headteacher Helen Ife with former pupils Anne Bridge, Keith Pye and pupils Ryan Armstrong and Poppy Johnson celebrating the 50th anniversary of St Thomas School, Garstang.
Headteacher Helen Ife with former pupils Anne Bridge, Keith Pye and pupils Ryan Armstrong and Poppy Johnson celebrating the 50th anniversary of St Thomas School, Garstang.
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Time capsule duo at school 50 years on

The Garstang school invited pupils past and present to celebrate the golden anniversary of the school’s relocation to new premises on Kepple Lane.

Alex Fisher, five, on top of the giant birthday cake

Alex Fisher, five, on top of the giant birthday cake

For former pupils Anne Bride (nee Mason) and Keith Pye, it was a chance to remember a special day some 50 years ago. They had a key role in the school’s history – burying a time capsule in its main entrance.

The capsule included the names of all the children on the school register in 1965 as well as newspapers, stamps and coins from that time.

Back then, the two were attending a school outpost – Elmhurst in Bowgreave, a spacious property located next to Garstang Academy, which accommodated pupils in their final two years at St Thomas’ because the main school, which became St Thomas’ Church Hall, was not big enough.

Anne, now a semi-retired schoolteacher living in Peterborough, said: “We were in our last year and our names were drawn out of a hat.”

Keith, a research scientist who now lives in Chester, added: “It’s obviously a happy school, a very effective one and high achieving.”

It was a family affair for Keith as he was accompanied by his sister Ros Ashworth and niece Jill Elliot who had both also attended St Thomas’.

They revealed their mother, the late Peggy Pye,had been renowned for her support for the school, playing the piano for events and was also a school governor. Keith’s daughter also attended.

They watched as current pupils gave a colourful song and dance presentation.

Music teacher Marion Gaughan created a school song especially for the event and two pupils modelled the new school uniform. Former teachers attending the event included former head Angela Procter and former juniors’ teacher Marjorie Martin, who worked there for 23 years from 1974.

Headteacher Helen Ife said: “It’s been a wonderful occasion for the children. To have Keith and Anne here was very special.”

Chairman of governors Dough Willoughby said: “We’re absolutely delighted to be celebrating this wonderful anniversary – the 50 years of service to the community.”

The mayor of Wyre Coun Tom Balmain and the mayor of Garstang Coun Lynn Harter were also VIP guests.

In the evening there were more celebrations with a barbeque, disco, summer fair and a repeat of the pupils’ dance and song presentation.