Maths: a lady teacher who had no control whatsoever of the class - mayhem most of the time.
History: the master was also in charge of the school cadets. Almost without exception he vacated the room for the whole lesson to commune with his aspirant soldiers saying to us “read the next chapter.” He was incidentally our form teacher.
French: a guy who had a snidey objectionable character with bad breath and mean with punishments, but with an unlikely knack for getting the basics of French Grammar into you - that has stood me in good stead in later years but there was little pleasure at the time.
Geography: a master who terrified us all with aggressive dogmatism and also by sweeping an eight foot map case across our heads. He also walked up and down the aisles between desks dishing out vicious backhanders to the back of pupils' heads - he went on to become a headmaster at another grammar school.
Chemistry: another master who had no control of discipline. This subject was totally incomprehensible to me and because of that I saw it as futile to try, rather reserve myself for subjects where I at least had some grasp.
English Lit. and Eng Language: Two subjects where I excelled being nearly always first or second in the class. I remember one inspirational master, and another who ran the school library and always interestingly reviewed new book arrivals for us during the lesson. There was s good library and it was one of the few areas where I benefited.
Corporal punishment was rife. I was caned twice by the deputy head and thrashings in front of the class with a gym shoe were commonplace. My elder brother who preceded me at the school was thrashed for having big feet.
Another bizarre custom compelled pupils up to Fourth Form to use the splendid twenty five metre swimming pool without wearing swimming costumes. There was one master in particular who always volunteered for pool duty although nothing untoward ever happened to my knowledge, but he was a standing joke amongst us: "Don't turn your back on Mr S."
On one occasion I was referred to the headmaster by the obnoxious, foul breathed French master on an issue that I strongly felt was unjustified. In the course of my meeting with the head in his study I tried to put my case. In response I remember the head saying “Do you think my staff would lie to me?” As a vulnerable fourteen year old I crept off subjugated. Oh how I would like to be back in that exchange now!
Me - “Well that is an interesting question Mr N, I have just been reading an anthology on environmental ethics and it covers the moral aspects of lying - perhaps we could discuss that a bit further - have you any thoughts on this?”
Headmaster (thinks) - Mmm… perhaps we’d better put this lad down for Oxbridge?”