- Contributed by
- People in story:
- Enid Lydiatt, Gerald Knight, Clive and Peta Pare
- Location of story:
- Biscovey St Blazey Gate
- Background to story:
- Article ID:
- Contributed on:
- 10 June 2005
This story was submitted to the People's War website by Sue Sutton on behalf of Enid Lydiatt, the author and has been added to the site with her permission. The author fully understnads the site's terms and conditions.
I wonder how many local Biscovey folk can remember 22 May 1940 when 24 boys, aged from 8 - 12 years, arrived at St Blazey Gate with the co-operation of the Vicar of St Mary's. It was a rush job from Canterbury in view of a threatened invasion from the Germans, no preparation had been made at this end. My first recollection of these visitors was seeing Bartholemew's shop 'swarming' with these small boys - they were under the supervision of Clive Pare, Choirmaster.
As I was teaching across the road, it wasn't surprising that after a few days the boys, bored with climbing the trees in the Grove and in general having nothing to do, appeared in my class sitting where there was a vacant seat. Clive Pare was apologetic, he was spending his time looking for permanent accommodation for the boys and darning torn trousers and socks!!
Eventually they discovered Carne's Cafe and Guest House at St. Blazey, laid claim with squatters rights and remained there for 5 years. We didn't really appreciate having such a famous choir at the time. They sang Evensong at St Blazey Church daily, visiting neighbouring churches for special events!
Canterbury School came to the St Austell area at the suggestion of Gerald Knight, organist at Canterbury Cathedral at that time. (Gerald Knight lived at Tywardreath.) He suggested the then St Austell Bay Hotel (now Carlyon Bay Hotel) and whole school came down and took over the premises, squash racket club and tennis courts down on Crinnis Beach. The squash racket premises were their class rooms. At that time Cliff Head Hotel - known as Bayfordbury Hotel - and the garages behind, were all used by the school. Many scholars never even visited Canterbury during that time.
Note The dates in this article were taken from an article by Peta Pare (widow of the HM of the Choir School).
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