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David Siderfin and Those 1950s Photos

Thursday, 10 December, 2015 -- Mark Stickings

All OEs from the 1950s onwards will have seen some of David Siderfin’s photos of Eltham College teachers, although you may not all be aware that it was David who took them.  In 1956, as part of a fund-raising exercise linked to the school fete, David, together with Martin (Monty) Krick and Graham Davis took a set of photos of all the teachers and some ancillary staff. The photos were sold to pupils and staff.  There were two sizes, quarter plate and half plate. David cannot remember how much they charged but there was good demand and they raised a total of £25 – a considerable sum in those days, described by Mr Turberville as “very creditable”.  How much would that be now, I wonder? Possibly £1600!

The camera was an Ensign Selfix 16/20. The films were developed and enlarged by the three boys in the darkroom of the physics lab which was upstairs in the New Block (for more recent OEs, it was new in 1937 and is now called the Science Block). The staff were very supportive and cooperated in taking up poses which were typical of their usual behaviour, some of which are seen here. At the time that they were taken there was an outbreak of TB in the school.  John Linscott, the games/PE teacher caught it and had his photo taken in bed; Stephen Smith who came back to cover PE had his photo taken doing a handstand on a PE box.

All the photos shown with this article were used in the School History book “Our Century”. Copies are available to purchase on Elthamians.net or from the school office for £20 or £26.40 with UK postage.  So when you read that book and enjoy the pictures, remember that it was David and his friends who took them!

More images from the 1950s can be seen on our Flickr page in the David Siderfin album.

Top Row L to R: Mr Occomore, Mr Moss and Mr McIver
Bottom Row L to R: Mr Lockiem, Mr Cullen and Miss Brown