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Author Topic: Fort Pitt  (Read 5693 times)

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Offline smiffy

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Re: Fort Pitt
« Reply #11 on: December 28, 2016, 14:04:52 »
I too found it interesting, but unfortunately none of the illustrations were showing up for me.

Offline ann

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Re: Fort Pitt
« Reply #10 on: December 28, 2016, 13:51:13 »
Thank you very much, I enjoyed reading the booklet.

Ann

Offline HERB COLLECTOR

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Re: Fort Pitt
« Reply #9 on: December 27, 2016, 22:25:35 »

I too remember Mrs Howard and had the privilege of meeting her at an Heritage open day back in around late 1990's.  I believe she wrote about Fort Pitt but not sure if it is still in print.

The booklet is available to read online @ http://issuu.com/fpgslibrary/docs/fort_pitt_booklet
The History of Fort Pitt Grammar School, Chatham. Joan Howard.
Chatham's unique site:
        Designed to protect
        Adapted to care
        Modified to educate

Offline ann

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Re: Fort Pitt
« Reply #8 on: January 20, 2013, 18:37:36 »
Thanks Lyn L.

I had it in my head that St Peters was down near Star Hill near the church there.  Thanks for clearing that up for me. 

Offline Lyn L

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Re: Fort Pitt
« Reply #7 on: January 20, 2013, 17:36:02 »
Ann,
I think you'll find that WAS St Peters back then  :)
Half our life is spent trying to find something to do with the time we have rushed through life tryi

Offline ann

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Re: Fort Pitt
« Reply #6 on: January 20, 2013, 17:30:17 »
Came across a letter written to me by a former teacher at Fort Pitt dated February 1964.

"Our school building is almost completed.  The canteen should be ready for occupation by Easter. It will be really wonderful to dispense with St Peters and I am really looking forward to the time when the whole school can have morning assembly under one roof."

I attended the school in the early 60's - leaving Summer of 1963.  I can remember that the 'dining room' was in a large room upstairs in the main building, with overflow tables out in the corridors, but I cannot recall going to St Peters.  I do recall that we had to go down to New Road sometimes for lessons in what is now the Roffen Club.  Does anyone have more information?

Offline ballysheil

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Re: Fort Pitt
« Reply #5 on: December 26, 2011, 23:48:20 »
Being a male I never went to Fort Pitt but as a St John Fisher pupil we used to use the Fort Pitt athletics track.
We were told that this lovely smooth and sheltered field was laid over the hospital graveyard.
May not be true, maybe it is, but always thought the place had a spooky feel even in bright sunshine.

Offline Mary E

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Re: Fort Pitt
« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2011, 11:50:20 »
Very interesting to read about Fort Pitt's history. Was a student there in the very late 1950s and never gave the history a thought then.  Our first form room was upstairs in Crimea block, over the gym.
I was in the 'commercial' stream and we learned our typewriting on machines that are only seen in museums these days.  Very fond memories of Miss Smith our typing teacher, but Mrs Bull was in total control of the Commerce class!
The biggest sin in our time was to walk on Miss Sackett's 'front lawn'.  We all used to wait for walnut season to pick up the soft juicy nuts in their green cases that fell from the tree on the pathway down to the hockey pitches and tennis courts.
The domestic science was in a separate building down on the main road, just where the railway line goes into a tunnel - don't know if this is your 'guard house'.
Really enjoyed reading your post.

Merry

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Re: Fort Pitt
« Reply #3 on: August 08, 2011, 18:38:56 »
We called it The Centre and by my time (78-85) it was still used for cookery and needlework.  I never read the letters, though I did see them from a distance - as far as I know they were from a slightly bonkers soldier to his girlfriend, planning their  next- ahem - encounter, in some graphic detail! 

Mrs Howard was magnificent.  I am sorry to say she died a few years ago but I too was lucky and saw her at a reunion, when I was able to tell her just what an influence she had been, especially sparking my interest in history.

Offline ann

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Re: Fort Pitt
« Reply #2 on: August 08, 2011, 16:52:30 »
Hi Merry,  I was a girl at the school circ. 1960.  From what I can remember the guard house you talk about was the domestic science block when I was there (called the block house, and indeed was supposed to have been used to house the mentally ill patients).  I never heard of the 'racy letters' you mention, what on earth was in them?

I can remember some of the classrooms with high skylights (theatre rooms) and also the hospital floors - where the walls and floor met they were curved. This was to make it easy to clean and of course there was no edge to harbour germs.  The long corridors upstairs was where we used to eat our school dinners.

I too remember Mrs Howard and had the privilege of meeting her at an Heritage open day back in around late 1990's.  I believe she wrote about Fort Pitt but not sure if it is still in print.

Merry

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Fort Pitt
« Reply #1 on: August 07, 2011, 23:39:43 »
As any Old Girl will tell you, this school has a very long history.  The earliest bit I recall is that there was a Roman settlement there; when I was at the school there was a human jawbone in a display case and First Year (none of this Year 7 nonsense back then). General Studies invariably featured the question "why are there no fillings in the Roman teeth?"  It was still a fort during the early 19th century - by the time I got there a real sin was to hit a tennis ball "down the ramparts" because they were strictly out of bounds and the luckless player had to buy a replacement ball.

During the Crimean War a military hospital was established there, legend has it by Florence Nightingale.  One of the school wings is named Crimea and still has ward numbers painted on the walls.  The old guard house is still there and there is also a separate building that was reputedly used to house patients suffering from mental illness.  A bunch of very racy letters was found in the rafters, and when they were in the school archives only sixth formers were allowed to read them.  One of my friends still swears that she saw the ghost of a lady in a crinoline wandering down a corridor... it was still in use as a hospital during WWI and there are some very sad photos of wounded soldiers sitting outside what became our English classroom.

The ramparts were full of tunnels and these were used as air raid shelters during the Second World War.  At Old Girl reunions there are occasionally visits from now-elderly ladies who recall sitting in them as the bombs fell on Chatham.

A wonderful history teacher called Mrs Howard was an indefatigable researcher into the school's history and used to mount displays of archive material along Top Corridor.  How I wish I'd paid attention back then, but I was probably far more interested in getting off to the Tuck Shop.

I have to say, however, that the historical moment I and many of my contemporaries recall is the time a fox died under the floorboards and the entire wing had to be shut for a couple of days because of the smell!


 

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