Nobody knows just how many boys and staff from the High School and Westoe Secondary School served their country during the war - but it is probably about 500.
Nearly all the names of those who gave their lives are known, as they appear on the two schools' Rolls of Honour.
However, the names of those who served and survived are not so easily discovered and are, sadly, not so well remembered. Sometimes names were linked with the schools in newspaper articles, but luckily the High School actually used empty pages of the first Admission Register to keep informal records. Sadly, no such record has been found for Westoe, so it is significantly under-represented.
At the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the war, and in honour of all of those who served (particularly of those who made the ultimate sacrifice), I have compiled a list of all those I've been able to discover, including military and personal histories where possible.
The youngest fatality is belived to have been James Law, who had only just turned 16. He wasn't killed in action, but was a mess room steward on the SS Strathcona, delivering coal from the Tyne to Marseille, when the ship was hit by a torpedo from the U-78 German submarine.
The youngest to have been killed in action is believed to have been Richard Steedman Kaye, who was killed in Flanders aged 19.
There are currently nearly 280 names listed (of which 118 are known to have lost their lives), and over 160 mini-biographies. This new section consists of:
This is very much a personal project. But, as I was getting to the point of publishing my researches, I learned that there are other similar projects around the country.
In particular, the North East War Memorials Project is aiming to document every war memorial, and every contained name, in the North-East. Although their project is very different in scope and intent to mine, I'm pleased to have been able to provide them with some information that could only be gathered from the schools' records, and to have had the opportunity to compare notes.
My own project is ongoing, and I would welcome any names or details that could be added. In particular, the February, 1917, edition of The Atom had some useful information, but I would love to be able to see other editions of The Atom and The Westovian.
If you have these, or any other information, please get in touch.
Whether you, or perhaps other members of your family, went to the South
Shields High School for Boys, the Westoe Secondary School or Westoe
Higher Grade School, South Shields Grammar-Technical School for Boys, Harton School,
or Harton Technology College (or you're a student or member of staff
there today), this site is for you.
The present-day school at Harton started
life as the South Shields Boys' High School in Mowbray Road (founded in
1885) and the Westoe Secondary School (founded in 1890 as Westoe Higher
Grade School, itself founded in the Ocean Road Schools Arts and Science
section in 1887) - they both combined in 1936 to form the South Shields High
School for Boys in a custom-built building in Harton.
In 1953 the name
changed to the South Shields Grammar-Technical School for Boys, and then
in 1974 it became Harton Comprehensive. By the end of the 70s it had become
co-educational and became Harton School. It is now called Harton
effectively a co-ed comprehensive with Technology College status.
is for anyone who went to or taught at any of these schools, but I also hope that
it will prove useful for those researching their family history (as several genealogists
have already discovered).
I was at the school (South Shields Grammar-Technical
School for Boys, hence the dominance of that name on the site) from September
1962 to July 1969, and have very fond memories of my time there (although there
are a few things I'd rather forget). So I decided to put together this site about
the school, from its founding to the present day. It was launched in December
2001, and re-launched with a new design in December 2002 - by June 2003 it had
attracted almost 3 million hits!
Almost everything you see has either been
sent to me by Old Boys from the school, or has been taken from the school's archives.
If you have anything at all to offer, whether it's just to
correct or add a name or two to the photos, or if you have old photos that aren't
on the site, old ATOMs, Speech Day programmes or anything else of interest (or
you just want to let me know what you think of the site), please email
me (but please contact me first before sending any material, as you
may be about to send something I already have waiting in the wings).
... and you may recognise the colour scheme for the site as being the school colours
- dark blue, light blue and gold.