Harvest Festival, Haverton Hill Infants c1950s

The Harvest Festival was always a highlight of the school year, we were forever telling our mothers that we needed something to take to put on the table, depending on how well or badly off we were at the time decided what we would take, if all else failed we could always rely on my fathers onion crop. These children look a little uncertain about being photographed, it was a fairly rare event at that time and most will have only been photographed at school, the children are practically standing to attention.

I note the presence of “Kellogg’s Corn Flakes”, Saxa Salt” and dark blue bags of sugar amongst the fruit and vegetables, there is also something called “Mixo”, I have no idea what this could be. I also spy a pair of “Billy Bunter” specs adorning the face of one of the boys, every class had at least one pair of these and each class also had a ginger haired child, my friend Brian was the spec wearer and I was the “Ginger Kid”.

These children will now be about 70 years of age and scattered far and wide, in the unlikely event of somebody recognising any of these children I shall be more than thankful if they can write in.

Photograph and details courtesy of Bruce Coleman.

2 thoughts on “Harvest Festival, Haverton Hill Infants c1950s

  1. I can’t offer any identifications but I am enjoying the scene depicted here. As you say, a photo was a rarity at that time, but the children look so natural really although, as you remark, perhaps have been instructed to stand at attention. Compare the clothing then and now?
    There is an abundance of representative produce to be seen – I wonder what the custom was re: disposal. Can anyone enlighten me on this?
    Thank you for the photo and a salute to those seventy-year olds.

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    • I too wondered what happened to the offerings, I went to two harvest festivals in Billingham, one at my school and the other at a local church, I have no idea as to what happened to the food but my wife, who went to school in Middlesbrough, tells me that they put all of the food into cardboard boxes and decorated the boxes with crepe paper and sent them to Nazareth House, which was a childrens home or orphanage as it was known in the 1950s.

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