Fulwood Counry Secondary School

Childhood - Schools


Year: 1958         Item #: 1608         Views: 27,934         Comments: 104

Fulwood Counry Secondary School

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Instruction from the expert, Miss Hilary Peet, physical education mistress, who plays netball for Lancashire and who is also a member of the County swimming team.
Source: Lancashire Life Magazine, November 1958

104 user comment(s) below:-

Comments by Sando on 11th April 2020  

David G,

Since he previously posted as Mary Dando it could be that he has had a sex change since then, which might explain his obsession with boy modesty now. :)

Comments by Sarah on 11th April 2020  

192.com lists 28 people named Mary Sandi on UK electoral registers

Comments by David G on 10th April 2020  

"Comments by Mary Dando on 24th May 2017"
Quote:- "It is disgusting that boys are not allowed to cover their legs for sport but girls are.

School uniform is compulsory, and we ask for the full co-operation of every parent in ... Items of uniform for boys and girls: ... (Boys do not wear tracksuit bottoms).
Salesian School Uniform Policy.

I am glad PE ended for me in May 1989."

With Dando being an unusual surname, I wondered if you & a certain prolific poster Mr.Dando with very similar views were related?

Comments by Andrea on 31st March 2020  andreatwo@hotmail.co.uk 

That was still the situation when I was at school too (primary school in the 1960s and secondary in the early to mid 1970s). In some ways I was lucky, being the elder of two girls, I tended to get new clothes rather than hand -me downs, but certainly not the designer gear (and footwear) that children get nowadays.

Comments by Biggles on 30th March 2020  

It seems from the picture above that girls were not bothered much by the look of their shorts for PE, even when posing for a picture to appear in their local magazine.

Today's kids are spoiled and obsessed by their looks, even for doing PE.
I remember at my primary school in the old days some boys would wear patched shirts, patched pullovers and even patched school shorts sometimes, but no one seemed to mind.
Clothes were expensive and most people were relatively poor, especially if they had large families, so you had to do with whatever you had.

Secondary school girls had sewing classes at school in fact as part of the curriculum. Sewing your own and your children's clothes, and patching them when had a tear, was cheaper than buying new clothes.
They didn't throw away clothes easily in those days or buy new ones often like they do today.

Comments by Sarah on 29th March 2020  

Mr Dando

Have you considered:

1 - The IPR/Copyright implications of replicating extracts from schools' Prospectuses and Parents Information documents all over the Internet.

2 - The legal implications of publicly branding the schools that feature in your posts as "Offending" and similar.

Comments by Andrea on 28th March 2020  andreatwo@hotmail.co.uk 

I think that some girls find a skirt more flattering than shorts, but don't want to risk exposing their knickers, so a skort gives them the best of both worlds.

Mr Dando,
I get that you have severe body image issues dating back to your school days, but would suggest that you are in a minority. You only have to look at any beach on a warm summers day to see that most boys are happy to be wearing just a pair of shorts.

Comments by Mr Dando on 28th March 2020  

Biggles the school Skort is nothing more than an attempt to make the mini-skirt and gym knickers more acceptable by devising a pair of shorts which looks on the outside like a skirt for females but is really a pair of shorts.

Personally, I would ban all leotards,skorts, miniskirts and gym knickers from school uniforms and have a gender neutral PE kit including tracksuit tops/bottoms, polo shirt and base layers which provide for complete modesty.
I would also mandate changing cubicles so that pupils could not take illegal photographs or see other kids in just their underwear.

It is also time we ended the compulsory towel requirement as we must get rid of school showers once and for all.

Here is a school which still has a mandatory towel requirement.


PE Kit
Girls & Boys
Navy & Maroon PE top
Navy blue shorts
Navy socks
Navy blue swimming trunks navy blue swimming costume
Football boots
Shin pads
Crestwood tracksuit top (recommended but not compulsory)

Tally Ho Biggles, join the Battle of Britain modesty campaign and lets end institutional child abuse in UK schools!

Comments by Biggles on 28th March 2020  

What is the reason of wearing a skirt over shorts for PE?

I can see that this is a result of modern liberal insanity.
But I am sure that Mr.Dando would be pleased if boys also wear it since he is campaigning in favour of identical PE kits for boys and girls without distinctions.

Comments by Andrea on 24th March 2020  andreatwo@hotmail.co.uk 


A skort is effectively a skirt with a pair of shorts underneath them (as part of the same garment). They only seem to have become popular in the last few years.


Comments by Danny on 24th March 2020  

What is a skort, if I may ask?

Or is it a typo and you meant 'skirt' or something else?

Comments by Andrea on 20th March 2020  andreatwo@hotmail.co.uk 

When my son was at secondary school, both girls and boys wore white polo shirts and blue shorts for indoor PE. Outdoors boys wore rugby shirts and girls could wear a sweatshirt over their polo shirts.

I understand from a friend whose daughter is still at the school that the girls now have the option to wear a skort, rather than the shorts if they wish to.

Comments by Ross on 19th March 2020  

Danny, the kit I described was pretty much what I wore from year 4 until I left school. In years 1 to 3 there was no kit we all took our clothes and shoes and socks off in the classroom and did PE in our underwear.

Comments by Ross on 19th March 2020  

Fiona, as you say a sensible PE kit and I'm sure one that is commonly found in schools today. If any boy wanted to be shirtless then I say let him. What harm is he going to do? Plus it will be the lads choice.
I do believe though that bare feet should be compulsory, it's good for the childs foot development and keeps in line with the cheap and affordable idea.

Comments by Danny on 18th March 2020  

Ross, we had gender neutral PE kit throughout primary school, which consisted of white t-shirt and white shorts for both boys and girls.

Comments by Fiona on 18th March 2020  

Ross: I suspect that many schools specify kit along the lines that you describe. Would you allow boys to choose to leave their tops off if they so wished?

Comments by Ross on 17th March 2020  

Mr Dando, you talk of gender neutral PE kits. I think an ideal and cheap kit that should be adopted by all schools is white polo shirt, navy shorts and bare feet for all PE in or out and the cross country. Simple, cheap and easy to carry in and around school.

As for showers there are times like after a muddy run they are required itshould be pupil choice if they take one or not.

Comments by Mr Dando on 21st February 2020  

Yes Sarah but no typographical correction can fix past child abuses committed by Physical education instructors. Even today there are schools that force vulnerable pupils into nudity through compulsory showers. An example is shown below:


PE uniform

White PE Shirt with school logo
Black Shorts or Black Skort
Fleece with school logo - optional item for colder weather
Black Jogging Pants - optional item for colder weather

White PE Shirt with school logo
Black Shorts
Fleece with school logo - optional item for colder weather
Black Jogging Pants - optional item for colder weather
All pupils are required to change for Physical Education into the PE uniform and pumps (not leisure boots as these have ridges on the soles).

In order to promote personal hygiene and independence skills, pupils are expected to shower after PE lessons. Pupils attending Hydrotherapy sessions should bring their own kit.

Instead of celebrating the "good old days" we should campaign to end mandatory showers, and make sure all schools have gender neutral PE kits for indoor, outdoor or swimming classes.

Comments by Sarah on 19th February 2020  

Just found this site. It's fantastic, especially for a relative oldie like me. But with my pedant's hat on, could you please correct the typo in the second word of the caption to the photograph above. Thanks in anticipation.

Comments by Mr Dando on 17th February 2020  

The Children Act was passed in 1989 but there are still primary schools that force kids to do PE in their underwear. These children must either do PE in their regular clothes or do it in a tracksuit. Vest, underpants and bare feet is a retrograde practice. Here is one such school in Lewisham.


PE Kit
Children in Years 1-6 require a kit which they can change into for PE.

This kit should be labelled with your child's name and sent to school in a bag which can stay in class all half term.

Reception children have only indoor PE and this is done in knickers and vests.

I done school aged 5 but I never did it in pants and vests. Together we must outlaw this practice.

Comments by Andrea on 22nd January 2020  andreatwo@hotmail.co.uk 

Mr Curious,
As I recall, we had swimming lessons each week for the Autumn Terms in our first two years at secondary school.

Corporal punishment did take place, mainly by a slap over the knuckles with a ruler, or a plimsoll to legs.

Comments by Mr.Curious on 22nd January 2020  

How often did you take the swimming lessons and in what years or forms?

Did you have corporal punishment at your school and how was it carried out?

Comments by Andrea on 21st January 2020  

Mr Curious - my school was girls only, so can't comment on boys' swimwear where I lived. We swam in the local public pool, and anyone forgetting their kit just sat it out.

Comments by Mr.Curious on 20th January 2020  

Did the boys also have to wear regulation swimsuits?
What if any of the girls or boys forgot their swimsuit?
I read that in some schools if a boy or girl forgot their swimsuit they were made to swim "without" or just underpants.
We didn't have swimming at my school so I don't know what it was like.

I suppose this could also be a question for male posters here who had swimming at school, apart from those where no swimsuits were allowed. :)

Comments by Andrea on 20th January 2020  andreatwo@hotmail.co.uk 

Mr Curious,
When I was at secondary school in the early 1970s we had to wear regulation navy blue swimsuits. The school didn't supply them, so they were yet another item our parents had to buy from the local outfitters.

Comments by Mr.Curious on 17th January 2020  

Were the girls regulation swimsuits the same identical colour and were they supplied by the school or bought?

Did you know of any schools where the boys did not wear any swimsuits?

Comments by Fiona on 15th January 2020  

Mr Curious - I expect they all wore standard one-piece "regulation" swim-suits, as I did and my mother did before me.

Comments by Mr.Curious on 14th January 2020  

The above photo caption says that the girls' instructor "is also a member of the County swimming team."
I wonder what kind of swimwear those girls wore in those days.
At least they did not have to swim nude like boys did in some schools, which I think Mr.Dando would not have approved of.

Are there any similar photo discussions on this site about swimming lessons?

Comments by Fiona on 8th January 2020  

Mr Dando

So, are you saying that because you personally found school showers "a problem" a generation ago, none of today's school kids should have showers after PE or games?

Comments by Mr Dando on 4th January 2020  

Yes and it was a problem! The new school term is fast approaching and it is time to end the dreaded school shower.

Like this offending school!


PE Kit
 White polo shirt with school star
 Black shorts (cycling shorts and long
shorts are not suitable) or skort
 Black football socks
 White ankle socks
 Trainers (with non-marking soles, not
skate shoes)
 Football boots
 Shin pads
 Towel for shower
 Gum shield
 White polo shirt with school star
 Black shorts (cycling shorts and long
shorts are not suitable)
 Rugby shirt with house colour
 White shorts
 Black football socks
 White ankle socks
 Trainers (with non-marking soles, not
skate shoes)
 Football boots
 Shin pads
 Towel for shower
 Gum shield
Optional PE Kit
 Black or white underarmour
 Black leggings (for dance and trampolining only)
 Black tracksuit trousers*
 Black Uffculme PE hoodie*
* Wearing of these items will be at the discretion of the PE teacher.

There should be no shower requirement and no towel requirement and items of clothing should never be at the "discretion" of the PE teacher.

Human rights in school must be our 2020 vision.

Comments by Mr. Curious on 26th December 2019  


"The school shower continues to be a problem and now must be abolished in all UK educational institutions."

Why is it a problem?
Did you ever take a shower at school?

Comments by Fiona on 26th December 2019  

... but being clean and fresh after vigorous exercise has much to commend itself.

Comments by Mr Dando on 25th December 2019  

The school shower continues to be a problem and now must be abolished in all UK educational institutions.


Our School Uniform

We are very proud of our school uniform. It unites us as a ‘team’ and helps us look very smart.

Our everyday uniform is:
Girls: School Navy and Jade crested polo tops only, Navy school crested sweatshirt or fleece, grey or black school skirt of an appropriate length, grey or black trousers, sensible shoes, blue or green summer dress in the summer.

Boys: School Navy and Jade crested polo tops only, Navy school crested sweatshirt or fleece, grey or black school trousers, grey or black school shorts in summer and sensible shoes.

Year 11 students may choose to wear a purple crested polo top instead. This helps to distinguish them from the rest of the school and give them a more grown up look.

We always get changed for PE lessons. It helps us keep our clothes nice and fresh and puts us in the right frame of mind for playing sport.

Our PE kit uniform is:

White crested polo tops, shorts, jogging bottoms and a jumper for outside sports. Non marking trainers. On PE days we bring a towel and shower gel because we have a shower afterwards.

Nudity in schools is nothing to be proud of, shower gel or not!

Comments by June on 9th December 2019  

😂 Susan it was not a problem! He enjoyed teasing them as the term 'knickers', as you know, has feminine connotations, and boys being boys, they were, of course, protective of their masculinity! You mention boys. How many? I had three ... quite dissimilar but all very male!

Comments by James on 9th December 2019  

Danny,yes,I did wear shorts out of school for playing,but they were more casual shorts like football shorts.
Even though I was fourteen my mother kept me in shorts all the time and decided what would be more suitable for me to wear for different occasions.
I did feel slightly'ridiculous'wearing short trousers with a jacket and tie,as I considered I had outgrown my costume,but my mother liked the classic school boy look and thought that the jacket and tie complimented the outfit.

Comments by Danny on 8th December 2019  

James, I also wore shorts as school uniform till I was 14 and my mother would never listen when I told her I should start wearing long trousers for school before that age.
But somehow I never minded wearing shorts outside of school since we mostly spent our time playing outside activities where shorts were more comfortable.
Maybe it was because it felt ridiculous wearing school jacket and tie with shorts for school.
Did you also wear shorts outside of school and felt the same?

Comments by Susan on 7th December 2019  

Sorry l meant to address you June
My hubby refers to them as knickers too and how our boys hate that term - haha

Comments by Susan on 6th December 2019  

My hubby refers to them as knickers too and how our boys hate that term - haha

Comments by James on 6th December 2019  

Danny & Andrea,when I was growing up and going through secondary school my parents kept me in short trousers and much to my annoyance they were frequently referred to as'short pants'as I believe that was also how the Americans refer to them.

Comments by Danny on 5th December 2019  

Andrea, I think the word knickerbockers referred to both male and female undergarments of the long type.
Which is probably why the other female posters have said that their husbands still refer to their own undergarment as knickers which may also distinguish between briefs and boxer shorts as Americans refer to them.
I remember those long undergarments worn by girls and women were called bloomers, which were still worn till the 50s or 60s.
To compound things further even more those short thin cotton or nylon outer shorts which were popular and worn by both boys and girls during the Summer months in the 70s and 80s were also called knickers. They were also often worn by boys as gym shorts for PE in some schools.
Not to mention the gym knickers worn by girls for PE which were not undergarments.
So this word has been abused, or used, to refer to different things. It is also used as a derogatory word, mostly by young girls, when they reply "knickers" to something you tell them. Much like what we males call "bullshit".

Comments by Stewart on 5th December 2019  

I only pop back to this site infrequently...and just seen a message o me from Anne, from way back in January. Yes, our schools do sound similar in their strict "no footwear" policy for all PE.
And yes, I, to remember cross country barefoot in the snow. We certainly didn't hang about!

Comments by Andrea on 3rd December 2019  andreatwo@hotmail.co.uk 

The garment you describe is what we would call knickerbockers, which I guess became abbreviated to knickers over there.

With regard to boys and girls changing for PE in the same area, this still happened when my son was at Primary school, but only until they were about 8 or so. Years ago, when I was at Primary school, it continued right up to the end of Primary school (at age 11). We were never completely naked, just down to vest and pants (underwear) before putting on our PE kit.
I don't know if it's the same in the USA, but in most Primary schools over here, there are far more female staff than male.

Comments by June on 2nd December 2019  

In support of Fiona

Yes, my husband calls his undies knickers and it annoyed our sons when he used the term when referring to their underwear ... men and boys! Love them ... really :)

Comments by Fiona on 2nd December 2019  

Oh the joys of being two nations separated by a common language!

"Knickers" in UK English are female (generally) undergarments for the nether regions, otherwise known as pants, panties, underpants, briefs etc. That having been said, my partner often uses the term to refer to his own underwear.

Comments by George Spelvin on 2nd December 2019  spelvin545@gmail.com 

Martin, I realize I'm 6 years late, but I just finished reading your message of December 15, 2013.
I am very curious about Shears Green School.
You said that you had to "take ALL our clothes off and were only allowed to put on one item of clothing, cotton shorts for boys and PE knickers for the girls."

I notice that in some British schools, the boys and the girls undressed for phys ed class in the same room.
Was that true at Shears Green?

I suspect that this display of flesh was for the benefit of some of the teachers.
From the Facebook discussion, it seems that you had a couple of funny teachers.

And by the way, what ARE knickers anyway?
Here in the United States, they aren't an undergarment, but rather a corduroy garment extending past the knee, and usually worn with long socks.
Apparently, that's not what it means in your country.

Comments by Doctor J Wallace on 20th November 2019  

It was all boys in the class though a couple of the assistants were teen-age or young twenties girls. Each girl assistant took a group of 4 or 5 boys under her charge. Since there were usually about 15 to 20 boys taking lessons there would be 4 assistants with a group of boys in different parts of the pool.

What I wan't prepared for was the end of the swim. About 10 minutes before our swim time ended mothers and girls walked in and sat down to watch and wait for their sons to finish swimming. One girl was a girl I knew from church and I was embarrassed to have her see me naked when I got out of the pool.

When I walked by she said hi to me and smiled. A little later my friend's mother and two sisters walked in. His oldest sister who was close to my age look at me standing there and smiled also. By time the swim period ended there were probably 5 or 6 mothers and 8 or 9 girls, probably sisters watching. I was embarrassing to have walk by them naked on the way to the dressing room.
I went the whole week with my neighbor and had to swallow my pride and let girls I knew see me naked.

Sunday at church two girls who had seen me smiled and told me how much they enjoyed "seeing" me swim with the other boys. It was embarrassing but at the same time a touch exciting to know they had seen me naked.

I guess the difference was that they saw young boys being nude as cute and inoffensive in front of females, but older teen boys would have been seen as gross and improper in front of females.

None the less the girls same age or younger, or a bit older than the young boys saw it as exciting watching all those nude boys.

I was not on the swim teams but attended several meets as a spectator and could notice the young girls excitement at seeing so much boy nudity.

Rude comments were of course not allowed in front of the adult spectators and the girls would just whisper in each others ears, so it just went unnoticed.

Our elementary school had a roll call for the shower like high schools because our Principal was an ex korean-war veteran who insisted on strict military discipline for physical education, and I was at elementary school towards the end of the Vietnam war.

Comments by Danny on 19th November 2019  

Doctor Wallace, it is amusing to read that they made you swim nude for hygienic reasons while "the pool always had a layer of scum."
Did the teacher have any assistants to instruct and help the boys with their swimming lessons?

I am also curious like you to know if this was common in other elementary schools at the time. Have you done any research or found out anything about this custom in other schools?
From what I have read about it, it seems to have been common in many High Schools, but have not come across any that mention it done in elementary schools.

Comments by Doctor J Wallace on 18th November 2019  

Hello Danny,

We had swimming one day a week. We swam naked for hygienic reasons. The pool always had a layer of scum. The first person rarely wanted to dive in first to break it. We had to take a swimming test and the times I was in the pool we only swam laps until we were exhausted. Since you didn't wear a jock strap you could get hurt during the dive.

I guess I would liken it to having to drink out of the black water fountain instead of the white fountain, it was just something they had control over and they made you do it.

The teacher was an old lady named Miss Coyne, a sophomore English teacher. After the shower we would parade through the swimming pool to dry off. However, you still had to take a shower, line up naked on your number for roll call.

Comments by Danny on 17th November 2019  

Doctor J Wallace, you seem to be talking about American schools where this practice of nude swimming for boys seems to have been very common pre-70s from what I read.
In your case being an elementary school did you have female teachers supervising you during swim lessons or female instructors?
How did you boys feel about being made to swim naked?

It is very much like you said, it would not happen today.

Comments by Doctor J Wallace on 17th November 2019  

I am doing some personal research about the practice of swimming in the nude for swim class in public school. I was at Windermere Elementary in the early 70s and remember swimming without trunks -- the girls (in their own class) were supplied suits by the school, but the boys were not. How long was this done in Buffalo? I have read accounts that it was done at a few schools in the Buffalo area. Did they do this in middle and high school as well? (I left town right before the 6th grade, so only know that this was the practice at Windermere Elementary until I was in 5th grade -- 1973). How many people experienced this during their childhood? Was it all over Buffalo, or just at Windermere? When did they stop doing this, and was there a reason? Was any teacher ever criticized for anything inappropriate?

As an adult and parent now of children of school age, the thought of swimming nude for swim class today is unthinkable today, and most likely would be considered abusive. What were others' experiences with this in Buffalo? Is there anyone that attended Windermere elementary in the 70s that could shine some light on what the policy was when they attended?