Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Minor public schools, major public schools and deference

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One overlooked factor in the rise of Boris Johnson may be the instinctive deference that those who went to minor public schools show to those who went to major ones.

Here is Charles Collingwood - Brian Aldridge in The Archers - writing of his schooldays in his memories Brian and Me:

We played cricket against Ludgrove, which was frightfully smart and a serious feeder school for Eton and Harrow. The captain of cricket at Ludgrove was a boy called Mike Griffith, who went on to captain Sussex. On the day we played them, we got off the coach at Ludgrove, shook hands like adults then walked down this immaculate path to the cricket field. To our far left there was another immaculate path so I asked what was the significance of these mown paths? 

"Well except on match days," Mike told me. "The one we're walking on today is for the exclusive use of boys who are going to Eton" 

What about the other immaculate path?" I asked. 

"That's for the exclusive use of boys going to Harrow." 

"What about the unmown path in the middle?" 

"That's for boys going to other schools!!"

The punctuation is ropy, but you get the point.

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