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Go on, who had the strictest School Uniform ???

(142 Posts)
Grumpyoldwoman Sat 01-Oct-11 09:57:49

Inspired by the 'OLDEN DAYS' thread and talking about not being able to eat in the street. (woe betide if a prefect saw you!!!)

My Convent School uniform was VERY srict
in Prep school we even had uniform knickers and liberty bodices and socks
We also had uniform indoor and outdoor shoes (no plimsolls...they were clarks 'Mary Janes') and if you forgot your indoor shoes you had to take them home every Friday to get them polished ... you had have yellow dusters tied to your feet all day...some girls loved it but I wouldn't have dared do anything wrong.
We had summer and winter uniform (inc hats) and even in High school we would never be seen in the street without our hat.
In High School my bus stopped literally outside our house and Mum would tell me off if I took my hat off even in the drive.

We had uniform socks and gloves (winter..wooly, summer ...white with an edging) and every pupil was inspected by staff/ prefects as we left school to check our gloves and angle of hats.
In Sixth Form we were allowed to wear uniform skirts and blouses instead of tunics and could were stockings instead of socks !!!
Kids today wouln't believe you ...but I could see my grand-daughter loving it ..she is a real Mallory Towers fan !!

God forbid that your skirt should show your knees !!!! Today's skirts are merely belts !!!

jinglejangle Sat 01-Oct-11 10:18:13

We had boaters (felt like wood) and white gloves! What?!!! grin

Yes, and indoor and outdoor shoes.

Annobel Sat 01-Oct-11 10:28:55

My Scottish secondary school was very lax about uniform. We did have blazers, but any old skirt would do and even the blazers weren't compulsory except on special occasions. This didn't stop us having a first class education.

kittylester Sat 01-Oct-11 10:39:11

We had boaters for summer and a funny grey hat for winter, both with the school band round them that had to be turned over to fit and heaven help you if the turn was in the wrong place. We also had to walk past the senior mistress in our white, poplin, summer blouses so she could check that you had a vest on as well as a bra. And we had to kneel down in the hall periodically for her to check that skirts touched the floor at least.

shysal Sat 01-Oct-11 10:47:43

For the first three years at grammar school we wore gym slips, which had to be 1 inch off the floor when kneeling, checked in assembly. Fortunately this could be adjusted by pouching over the money belt, so a longer one lasted the whole time.
I too wore a boater, with an extra large brim. When these were replaced with standard sized ones, we older girls were proud of ours. Got autographs on the lining on last day at school, but it got lost over the following years.

susiecb Sat 01-Oct-11 11:02:47

We had berets, blue blazers with bright blue ppiuping and the school bade, roayl blue pleated skirts (three small pleats within a larger pleat), white shirts and ties with our house colours within the school colours - I loved it and wish they wore uniform now. When they leave the senior school near my house it looks like a refugee swarm.

we also had a school hymn -
These things shall be
A loftier race
Than ere the world hath known
Shall rise with light of freedom in their eyes
and something of knowledge in their minds - sounds rather sinister now!

glammanana Sat 01-Oct-11 11:05:46

We wore navy gymslip's with big box pleat's at the back and front with button's on the shoulder's that could be ajusted as you grew,so mine started at mid-calf when I first started and gradually over time it began to fit me!!! at DSs prep school the boy's had to wear grey short's until they where moving on to secondary school and I alway's took him in long pant's in the winter until we arrived at school and changed before he went into school I alway's worried his little leg's would be cold.

em Sat 01-Oct-11 11:22:43

Annobel my academy was a bit more strict. We all wore rather nice (and expensive) blazers. As prefects we added extra braiding and girl prefects had special berets. I remember a very hard winter (62/63?)when I had a lovely grey mohair duffle coat. I don't think state schools in Scotland have ever been allowed to enforce strict uniform policies so there was some leeway. They've always had to rely on the co-operation of parents.Today the uniform is hardly recognisable as such. I've always been quite intrigued by the rigid policies enforced by some English schools. Is this mostly in church schools or are local state schools equally strict?

glammanana Sat 01-Oct-11 14:30:44

em I find that unifrom policies are the same between the schools,be they church schools or local state,I have my DDs children at church schools,and the only leway given is to DGS3,he being nearly 17 and in 6th form,he is allowed the removal of the blazer,but it must be replaced with either suit jacket or smart cardigan,my DS1s daughter goes to local state school and they are strict with unifrom and shoe's even down to the kind of school bag they carry,I think it goes a long way to create a tidy appearance,but it does not help in any way to the quality of education as they are very lacking in overall commucation with the family in the local state attended by my DGD.

Grumpyoldwoman Sat 01-Oct-11 14:41:50

Talking of bags reminds me ..we had to have brown leather satchels but could have a brief case in 6th form !!
I really don't know how they got away with it !!..and every item of clothing had to be from ''Henry Barrie' in Manchester.!

Annobel Sat 01-Oct-11 15:36:13

em, I find that no matter what stipulations schools make about uniform, the pupils manage to find their own interpretation. In our small town the High School has an excellent academic reputation, but the girls I see out and about at lunch time wear their skirts ludicrously short, just a little bit longer than knicker length! Many schools have gone over to ties on elastic because it's not easy to wear those with the top shirt button undone. When I was a governor, I used to walk round the school with the Head who was perpetually having to tell pupils to 'tuck your shirt in!' However, that same school, having abandoned blazers, had to bring them back - at the pupils' request, via the school council.
My GCs' primary school is very strict and they do look neat and smart, at least at the start of the day. My kids could wear what they liked at that age and I don't think it did them any harm.

Annobel Sat 01-Oct-11 15:47:05

em - that winter of 62-63 I was doing a Dip Ed in Edinburgh and my feet almost froze solid. It must be one of the coldest cities in Britain! I had a red duffle coat with a white fleecy lining and the caretaker at the University Dept of Ed used to call me Red Riding Hood. Funny the things one remembers!

gma Sat 01-Oct-11 15:55:28

Although I went to a secondary school (not bright enough for grammar) we had a uniform, although it was not strongly enforced, not enough wealthy parents who could afford it.....I hated it and I still hate the thought of having to wear uniform of any type. But we did have a school motto...Courteous and Steadfast . Where that came from heavens knows. My Dad said that for me it should have been Courteous and Bedfast!!!! I thought it was hillarious. Well I was only 11yrs old!!!
Well its wine o'clock already - always an hour earlier in October and at the weekend!! wine

supernana Sat 01-Oct-11 16:43:31

Grumpyoldwoman I was also educated in a convent from 1952. VERY STRICT dress code. Same as yours in almost every way. Hats summer - [Panama] and winter [velour...not to be dented or worn at cute angle] and not to be removed until indoors. Indoor shoes had to have a bar over with button. Outdoor shoes were laced. Long itchy socks for summer. Ankle socks for summer and white gloves. Made to wear socks until I was well into my teens [except when I could get away with going bare-legged when parents were otherwise engaged. Navy blue knickers with a pocket and fleecy liberty bodice. Always walked in silence, in single file, along corridors. NO eating in the street whilst wearing uniform. NO sitting on buses if others needed a seat. 'Twas no fun!

supernana Sat 01-Oct-11 16:46:01

PS...and every item of school uniform had to be purchased at Sandersons in Northampton.

jackyann Sat 01-Oct-11 17:53:56

All very similar - the dreadful bottle green knickers, the skirt (and culottes for hockey) checked every term whilst kneeling. A white square-neck blouse with "leg-of-mutton" sleeves & V-neck gymslip.
One advantage over a lot of today's uniform is that everything, including the science smocks could be made - there were patterns & fabric that could be purchased (in Wellingborough, supernana!).
I have just moved from Luton, where one of the girls' schools has exactly the same shade of bottle-green for its uniform. As a lot of the girls wear shalwaar kameez (which can, sensibly, be home-made) they can look an awful lot like my old gymslip!

harrigran Sat 01-Oct-11 18:20:44

We had to wear full uniform at all times. Navy blazer with yellow binding and a beret with the school badge. Navy tunic with white blouse and navy and yellow striped tie. Summer uniform was gingham dress or skirt and white blouse. In the first year we made our gym slips in needlework, royal blue and quite practical, but we tucked them in our knicker legs to stop them falling over our heads when we were upside down. We also had to make our blue gingham cookery apron and cap, just found it in a drawer the other day. White ankle socks were always worn, summer and winter.

Annobel Sat 01-Oct-11 18:54:18

As a big reader of school stories, I was so envious of my cousins and friends who went off to boarding school with a trunk full of uniform. Now, I am so grateful I wasn't subjected to that particular discipline!

Annobel Sat 01-Oct-11 18:54:30

As a big reader of school stories, I was so envious of my cousins and friends who went off to boarding school with a trunk full of uniform. Now, I am so grateful I wasn't subjected to that particular discipline!

Annobel Sat 01-Oct-11 18:55:12

Done it again! Sorry! blush

Jacey Sat 01-Oct-11 20:00:02

Oh ...I'd forgotten about indoor and outdoor shoes ...that was a real stretch for my parents ...I'd only ever had one pair of shoes until then ...only replaced when I grew out of them ...they didn't wear out because Dad always repaired the heels and soles!! (He had a cobbler's last everyone's shoes were repaired)
This has brought back some long forgotten memories!smile

Joan Sat 01-Oct-11 23:20:11

I went to a grammar school in West Yorkshire and the uniform code was very strict, even down to how you tied your tie, the length of your gymslip skirt, and the school knickers - yards of brown interlock which gripped the waist and the top of the legs with industrial strength elastic.

I remember how the lads rushed for the bottom row of locker at the start of the first form, so they could look up our skirts as we stood at the top lockers. expecting a glimpse of satin and lace, perhaps. Poor things! I reckon what they saw was the start of the gay rights movement in Britain - they wanted the right to NEVER see anything like that ever again!!

grannyactivist Sun 02-Oct-11 00:51:50

Hey GOW, did you go to St. Augustines? My school uniform, right down to the regulation maroon knickers, was also purchased from Barries. I went to a Manchester grammar school which had a very strict uniform policy that was rigorously enforced by the deputy headmistress. It was a punishable offence to be improperly dressed on the way to or from school - heaven help a student spotted not wearing the hat! This was a felt 'jockey cap' for girls in the summer. Teachers used to board buses to try to catch students out. It seems extraordinary now.

Joan Sun 02-Oct-11 01:17:26

Oh, I remember that 'hat' thing. In our case it was a brown beret with a brass school badge on it. A prefect saw me take off my beret as I walked down the garden path of my home, and put me in prefect's detention. I was disgusted and refused to go. The headmaster sent for me and asked why. I told him that schoolchildren like her did not deserve any power over other children (I was about 12 she would have been 17 or 18). He asked if I accepted his power. I said I did, so he put me in detention. I told him I was happy for that.

At detention I learned an important fact of life. The most interesting kids are the dissident, naughty kids. I was the youngest there, and all we had to do was clean the school silver. I was used to doing that at home, for my brother's cycling trophies, so it was no big deal. What I did enjoy was being in the company of the older ones.

I was never a naughty kid - just bolshie.

Annobel Sun 02-Oct-11 09:08:35

Ye Gods! I rest my case. See above.