Fulwood Counry Secondary School

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Fulwood Counry Secondary School
Fulwood Counry Secondary School
Year: 1958
Views: 66,348
Item #: 1608
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

Comment by: Mr Dando on 5th September 2021 at 19:11

We must stand together and end gender discrimination in the school. Even today there are still some schools which require boys to wear White shorts where it is possible to see the underwear underneath the uniform.


Additional for Movement
Girls: Black leotard
Boys: White shorts
No jewellery is permitted during PE lessons

There are also those schools who stil think it is acceptable for boys to bring spare pants and swimming trunks to change into under PE kits.


In line with the National Curriculum requirements a note from parents is required if students are unable to actively participate in the PE lesson. ALL students MUST bring PE KIT as they will be expected to officiate/coach in accordance with the National Curriculum.
All kit should be clearly labelled
Forgotten kit – kit may be borrowed but this will be recorded with a kit mark in the staff register.
NO valuables to be worn, all watches, money and jewellery, will be collected before the lesson and locked away. Pierced ears must be plastered over if recently pierced. Any valuables left in the changing rooms are left at your own risk.
Long hair must be securely tied back.
A towel should be brought to all lessons as showering is necessary on occasions.
In swimming, anyone with a medical complaint e.g. epilepsy, asthma, heart condition must wear a differently coloured cap to the rest of the class. Minor medical conditions – WHITE. Major medical conditions – RED. Blythe Swim School hats of all colours are available for purchase from school
Boys will need to bring swimming trunks or spare underpants to wear under shorts for all activities, both for personal hygiene and comfort

Now that all school children are returning to their clasrooms tomorrow it is time to build back better and cease discrimination against males in PE.

Comment by: Sandra on 8th August 2021 at 07:43

When it came to forgotten kit our school was less forgiving than yours Hannah and we were compelled to do the lesson in nothing more than our knickers and barefoot. I remember doing that once or twice a year inside and out.

Comment by: Graham on 3rd August 2021 at 11:54

Mr Dando, a.k.a. Maltamon, does seem to have been going on about this for rather a long time, and in some very strange places: A quick Google produced:

[2013] https://www.historyworld.co.uk/photo.php?page=92&sort=0&l1=&l2=&id=1607[
[2014] https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/thefreeballersforum/pe-clothing-t3551-s10.html
[2014] https://www.voy.com/225383/11.html
[2017] https://www.voy.com/242785/5/1945.html
[2017] https://www.voy.com/242785/5/1945.html

and there are no doubt others.

Comment by: Hannah on 2nd August 2021 at 17:29

Dando, don't make assumptions about my age. You won't work with me to do anything, because hanging around the internet and obsessing about showers is all you ever seem to do. You've achieved nothing and you never will.

Comment by: Mr Dando on 1st August 2021 at 16:52

Hannah, Andrea,June,Julie, Sally & Fiona you are very brave for detailing the state mandated child abuse that occurred in the 1980's before the Children Act 1989, Human Rights Act 1998 & Equalities Act 2010 came into force. I remember being forced to submit to humiliating walk through showers and having to dry with my rugby shirt if I forgot my towel.

I will work with you and other feminists on this platform to campaign for real gender equality. Even today there are some schools which allow girls to wear tracksuits but deny that possibility to boys.



Sky blue polo shirt (collared) Navy blue polo shirt (collared)
School sweatshirt Navy blue reversible sports shirt (long-sleeved)
Sky blue knee-length sports socks Navy blue football socks
Navy blue tracksuit bottoms (Boys do not wear tracksuit bottoms)

There are other schools which limit tracksuits to outside sports, inclement weather or" at the discretion of the PE teacher". Here is such a school.


Tracksuit bottoms
Plain navy with no branded logo (worn at
the discretion of the PE teacher).

Like the Norwegian Beach volleyball team we must campaign against the sexualisation of PE kits and campaign for real gender equality.


While male players are allowed to play in tank tops and shorts, women are required to wear bikini bottoms “with a close fit and cut on an upward angle.”

Please let us join together and end compulsory showers in school whilst making sure that all school uniforms are gender equitable.

I will also campaign for all school children to be able to wear the hijab during all gym and swimming lessons.


Year 5 and 6 girls may wear hijab if they wish. It must be an appropriate colour. Grey, black or maroon are suitable.

They must be removed for PE on the grounds of Health and safety.

Girls from Nursery to year 4 do not need to wear hijab.

It is time our education system accepted all Islamic forms of modesty.
The Quran advises that Muslim women should cover all her body parts except for face and forehands.

Let us make this country a true model of multi-cultural Britain and end of the militarisation of our children through humiliating immodest school uniforms.

Comment by: Hannah on 30th July 2021 at 22:34

Hi Andrea

If we forgot our PE kit, we were given a netball bib and had to wear that with our pants. Insides we had to do whatever lesson we were mean to be doing; outdoors we had to run laps of the fields. If we didn’t have a towel we had to shower and “air dry” which in reality meant getting dressed while still wet.

Comment by: Andrea on 29th July 2021 at 22:53

Did the boys ever try to catch a glimpse of the girls PE classes? I went to an all girls Secondary school, but during our final year at Primary, some of the boys certainly began to take an interest in the few girls who had began to develop!

Unlike you I was wasn't looking forward to my breasts starting to develop - I was quite happy as a flat-chested tomboy. Of course nature wasn't to be denied and by the Spring of the first year at Secondary things had begun to change. At that stage they weren't really noticeable under my school uniform nor too uncomfortable when I was running around in PE, so I did my best to ignore them. Mum had noticed the changes though and bought me a couple of bras for my 12th birthday., although as I mentioned in an earlier post I didn't start to wear them straight away.
If we forgot our PE kit we had to borrow a polo shirt from lost property and they were usually dirty and smelly. We weren't excused showers either - if we didn't have a towel, we had to use someone else's after they had used it. Did you have to do the same?

Comment by: Hannah on 29th July 2021 at 11:11

HI Sandra, thanks for replying. I'm surprised that as many as half of your class chose to do PE topless at that age, but if you were happy then why not I suppose! While I didn't have anything to cover up, I was still a bit shy having to run around without a top on in my first year, but I think it was made better by the fact that we were all wearing as little as each other. As we got older we had to do PE in our underwear if we forgot our kit, so I certainly spent some lessons doing gym in just my underpants as a teenager!

Comment by: Sandra on 29th July 2021 at 06:51

Hannah, yes middle school was age 9-13 and the lesson was single sex although at the same time as the boys so we did see each other. I mostly chose to do PE without a vest I think I felt more comfortable that way, I was a late developer and was flat chested for my time at middle school. About half the girls were topless too.

Comment by: Hannah on 28th July 2021 at 15:31

Hi Andrea and Sandra

Andrea, you asked if any of my classmates found it embarrassing doing PE in just their pants in a mixed Primary school class? I don't remember any great embarrassment after the first few times. We were all in it together and after a few weeks it became normal to be running round in our pants and no top. Like you I was flat-chested when I left Primary, but I remember some girls in my class had the beginnings of breasts, or nipples that reacted to the cold. I was enthralled by them, and couldn't wait for mine to do that too! That was quite embarrassing, looking back!

At Secondary I still didn't wear a vest in the first year. I'd guess around half of the class did though, and some were very hesitant in taking them off before PE. We all knew that when we came back in September for our second year, we'd be allowed vests in gym.

Sandra, was middle school ages 9-13? Was middle school PE single sex or mixed, and did you choose to wear a vest with your pants? What did other girls choose?

Comment by: Andrea on 28th July 2021 at 11:43

Hi June,
Yes it is strange, particularly given the development of the sports bra (which hadn't even been invented when I was at school).
My ex always wore one when playing football.
By contrast, when my son was at school he just wore his ordinary underwear for PE and they never used the showers either.
I did have to buy him a jock strap and "box' when he started playing junior cricket at the age of about 11.

Comment by: June on 27th July 2021 at 21:50

Hi Andrea
I guess he bought it at the school clothes shop with other boys. He is two years older than me.

My husband wore a jockstrap for his sporting activity and still does.

Strange how it went out of fashion - l wonder why as the bra still maintains its useful purpose!!

Comment by: Julie on 27th July 2021 at 15:47

I've only just come across this site and it made me giggle.
It was years and years ago and I saw my boyfriend's jockstrap in with his rugger stuff. I blurted out 'whats that' and wish I hadn't when he told me! Perhaps it was a bit of a shock when it turned up with the washing.

Comment by: Andrea on 26th July 2021 at 16:33

Yes, I guess they are similar 'rites of passage' brought about by the effects of puberty!
I remember being similarly embarrassed the first time mum hung one of my bras on the washing line when my dad was at home. For some reason I didn't want him to know that I had started to wear one! I needn't have worried, if he did notice it, he never made any comment about it!

Do you know whether your brother purchased his first jockstrap alone, or whether he went with your dad? Also, was this before or after you started to wear a bra?
I don't have any brothers and my dad wasn't sporty, so the first time I saw a jockstrap was when my husband's turned up in the washing basket when we were first married.

Comment by: June on 26th July 2021 at 05:54


Just to backup your comment re jockstrap... my brother started wearing one at 13 as he was advised to do so, and i remember my mum catching him washing it ... he was really embarrased about it ... thereafter it was just another normal clothing item that just went in the normal wash Guess it was the same for boys as it was for girls wearing their first bra!

Comment by: Andrea on 23rd July 2021 at 16:35

When my son was at Primary School boys and girls changed in their classroom until about Year 4, but after that they went to separate areas to change (but not dedicated changing rooms).

Like you, we didn't have a shower at home so at first it was a bit of a novelty. We didn't really get time to enjoy it though, as our teacher was always keen to get us showered, dried and dressed for the next lesson as quickly as possible.

I don't recall my sister playing topless, but as she is a couple of years younger than me, she tended to play with different friends. She was more 'girly' than me, so tended to play with other girls, whereas I was happier joining in the boys games.
I don't remember mum catching me without my top on and if anyone told her she never told me off about it.
In the summer holidays between my first and second year at Secondary school, she often suggested I wore a swimsuit top under my T shirt, so it's possible she had some inkling about my going topless previously. Alternatively she may just have wanted me to wear another layer so that my budding breasts weren't obvious under my shirt. She had in fact given me my first bras as a birthday present a couple of months before the summer holidays, but I was reluctant to wear them at that point.

We normally wore shorts and a T shirt or a swimsuit on the beach. Mum bought us two piece costumes (bottoms and a flat top) as that made it easier when we went to the loo.

Your reference (in your answer to Fiona) to your teacher saying about bras becoming sweaty if worn for PE reminded me of something mx Ex told me. He said they weren't allowed to wear their normal underpants for PE for that same reason. He said they just wore shorts for the first two years at Secondary school, but were advised to purchase an athletic support (jockstrap) at the start of the third year as puberty was starting to kick-in.
As he was slightly older than me it's likely that he started to wear a jockstrap around the same time I started to wear a bra!

Comment by: SALLY MEADOWS on 23rd July 2021 at 00:05

Hi Andrea,
For the first couple of years at primary school we just changed in the classroom, I think we must have changed in the toilets later when we had a proper PE kit because we didn't change in front of the boys.
I always thought that It was strange that we didn't have showers & changing rooms because It was a virtually new school.
At secondary school everyone had to shower, I was quite excited about this at first because we didn't have a shower at home and I was looking forward to seeing what it would feel like to have hot water cascading down my naked body . In reality I found myself getting pushed in one end and out the other because everyone was in a hurry to get dressed, I barely got wet.
After a few weeks I realised that if I was one of the last in I could have a proper shower, but then of course it was a rush to get dressed in time.

Did your Mum ever catch you playing out topless - Did your Sister do it too?
Were you allowed to go topless at the beach?

Comment by: SALLY MEADOWS on 22nd July 2021 at 23:11

Hi Sandra,
Were you just allowed to be topless in the house or did you go outside like that. How old were you when you had to cover up?
What did you used to wear at the beach?

Comment by: SALLY MEADOWS on 22nd July 2021 at 23:04

Hi Fiona,
They were blue shorts, although we called them knickers because they were quite small, similar to those that female athletes wear today.
Bras weren't allowed to be worn for gym class. Our teacher was young and really fit, she told us she intended to work us really hard and that we'd be more comfortable without tops once we got used to it.
She said we couldn't wear bras because they'd be sweaty and horrible to put on after we'd showered. She also told us that she wasn't wearing a
bra under her vest and if she didn't need one we certainly didn't.

Comment by: Fiona on 20th July 2021 at 12:06

Hannah - in your mixed Primary school PE classes, were the boys topless as well/

Comment by: Sandra on 20th July 2021 at 06:37

Hi everyone, so for me primary school was 5 to 9, middle 9/10 to 13 and high 13 to 16. We was never given any explanation why we had to do pe with out feet bare but I didn't mind I think I preferred going barefoot any way. My Mum was quite Liberal and I often spent my time at home in just knickers.
Andrea, we had compulsory showers after any outdoor sports which was a welcome relief after a muddy cross country.

Comment by: Andrea on 19th July 2021 at 22:58

Unlike Sally and Fiona, I would describe my mum more conservative then liberal, so my sister and myself didn't normally walk about the house in our underwear. However when I was playing out with friends (usually boys as I was a definite tomboy) I didn't always keep my T shirt on in hot weather. The last time I was able to be that carefree was the summer between Primary and Secondary schools. by the following summer I had to make sure I was wearing a swimsuit top if I wanted to remove my T shirt.
Unlike Fiona's our Primary school didn't have private places for changing.
Boys and girls changed for PE in the same classroom. The only exception was in the final year when the few girls who had graduated from vests to bras were allowed to change separately in the toilets.
Our secondary school had proper changing rooms and compulsory showers, so although we had proper PE kit (polo shirts and gym shorts for indoor PE), we got used to seeing each other naked in the changing rooms.
Did you ladies have compulsory showers at Secondary school?

Comment by: Fiona on 19th July 2021 at 11:52

Sally - welcome to the discussion.
If PE in your first year at secondary school was topless:
(a) what did you wear "down below", PE shorts or just your knickers?
(b) what did girls who were already wearing bras do?

Comment by: SALLY MEADOWS on 19th July 2021 at 01:31

Hannah, Sandra, Andrea, Fiona
Hi, Just discovered this board so I haven't read many of the older posts yet.
I was at school in the late seventies/early eighties. At primary school we had a proper PE kit for outdoor sports and knickers & vests for indoor sports.
For the first year at secondary school It was topless like Hannah, but we did know that before we started at the school & obviously our parents did too, so It didn't come as a surprise to anyone.
Like Fiona my mum was quite liberal when It came to what us kids wore at home so I was comfortable not having a top on. I think my Mum's policy was the less clothing we wore, the less she had to wash.

Comment by: Andrea on 18th July 2021 at 22:11

Sandra, what age range did middle school cover? We had Infants (5 / 6), Junior (to age 11) and then Secondary school.

Did your Year 9 teacher say why socks and plimsolls weren't allowed?

Comment by: Fiona on 18th July 2021 at 22:03

Hannah, Sandra
My Mum was fairly easy-going, and certainly not bothered when I chose to wander the house in just my knickers (or even less) but I'm pretty sure she would have been in the Head Teacher's office in a flash if I had come home one day and reported that we had done PE similarly clad.
We had "proper" PE kit in both Primary and secondary school, Nothing fancy, just a t-shirt and shorts of our own choosing, no colours, logos or anything like that. This was in the days before Academies and their ridiculous school uniform fetishes. Secondary school had proper changing rooms, and in Primary we always had a dedicated private space for changing.

Comment by: Sandra on 18th July 2021 at 08:10

Hannah, All sounds very similar to my primary, middle and high school days. In primary school we simply stripped down to our knickers in the classroom and went into the hall like that for PE. During middle school we were allowed to wear a vest with our knickers if we chose to and bare feet. In high school our kit was like the photo vests, gym knickers, plimsolls and socks until half way through year 9 and a new teacher came along and told us all to remove our plimsolls and socks and don't bring them again.

Comment by: Andrea on 16th July 2021 at 23:45

Hi Hannah, did any of your classmates find it embarrassing doing PE in just their pants in a mixed Primary school class? I was still flat-chested when I left Primary, but not all my classmates were!

At Secondary it must have seemed odd for the girls who wore bras
having to remove them for PE - just when they needed the support most!
By contrast, it was our PE teacher who suggested to some girls that they should wear bras for PE. I didn't really need one during the first year,

Were you told in advance that you could wear PE vests in the second year, or did some turn up for the first PE lesson without one?

Comment by: Hannah on 16th July 2021 at 16:36

Sorry, Andrea, I didn't answer your first question. At primary school our classes were mixed. I then went to a mixed secondary but PE was single sex. We used the gym when the boys were outside, and vice-versa.

Comment by: Hannah on 16th July 2021 at 10:41

Hi Andrea - no, our teacher had us in just our gym pants, the girls who wore bras had to take them off so we were all in the gym topless for the first year.