Glyn Summers R.I.P.
I was at Mayfield for seven years. It was my first teaching post, after some time in industry and commerce, and the experience I gained was very good indeed. Charles Hicks was the best head with whom I ever worked. I retired as Deputy Head of Chepstow Comprehensive School in 1991.
Just thought I’d mail you before the reunion and confirm I will attend and really looking forward to meeting you and the lads after so many years. I’ll be travelling down from Huntingdon via Colchester after seeing family and friends and probably arrive mid afternoon. Be great to catch up on all your news. Best wishes Derek.
PS. We won’t mention the rugby.
Looking forward to our meeting
Well, Mr. Summers, how does it feel to have influenced several generations of school boys and also, I’m sure, to be held in great affection by so many of them. I was in the class of 1964, along with Trevor Lewis, Michael Swash, et al and was blessed with having you for English before being promoted, on your recommendation, to Mr Bradley’s class. I still have a, now rather worn, copy of Jack Schaefer’s Out West, purchased on your recommendation – I remember that you were a devotee. I also recall that you and Andrew Whyatt new my uncle and aunt, John and Ann Thomas, who were living in Goodmayes at the time. Anyway, I’m one more ex-pupil who remembers you with great affection and thanks you for the time and effort you invested and the interest you took.
Warmest regards, etc.
Thank you, John, for your sentiments. The only problem is that I don’t recognise the person you write about. My experience at Mayfield was rewarding and set me on the road to successful career.
Sad though it may be, of all the teachers who crossed my path at Mayfield, it’s only you and Mr. Reeves who I remember, half-a-century later, with clarity and fondness, and who I consider to have had a positive influence on me throughout my life. Even allowing for the unrelability of childhood memories, which, as we all know, can make giants of the smallest of men, I think you should accept the sentiment as a compliment well-earned – and I doubt very much if I am the only one of your former pupils who harbours these same sentiments.
Many thanks for firing my interest in rugby. The day you twisted your ankle was the first injury I saw on the field. Oh, how many more have followed. But never mind, Wales may yet win a cup…
Regards John Burchell, 4E4 5E4 Class of 1963.
Thanks for the compliment, John. Truthfully, since rugby became professional, I think most of the fun and joy has gone.
You took myself and my classmates for English for two years (1964/66) 4E3 and 5E3. We made a film in which I had to dress up in a grass skirt but most of the plot I have forgotten (there’s a joke there somewhere). I think you were on the school trip to Davos in 1966 but may be wrong about that. I was on the phone to another classmate Andrew Eaton talking about Mayfield and he mentioned the website. We remember our school days at Mayfield with fondness and thank you, and your colleagues, for being a major part of that time.
I remember you well, Steve. I still have a copy of the film which was about some lads trying to cheat on the cross-country run. You all sacrificed a few Saturday mornings to make it. All my memories of Mayfield are pleasant ones.
They were your Saturday’s too Glyn and you probably needed the break more than we did. I remember you organising a film club after school and we watched films like The Cruel Sea, The Gun and Saturday Night and Sunday Morning and others. I think you did your bit alright.
We were the guinea pigs, the first year of CSE’s and had to read a whole list of books over the 65/66 terms. It was a good list though; not a bad one in there really. I got C’s in all the subjects I took which wasn’t brilliant but I often wonder what they would equate to now.
The following is an extract from a message received by Brian Mead from Glyn’s daughter Kate.
Dear Brian, I am Kate, Glyn Summers’ daughter. I am writing to let you know that sadly Dad had a big heart attack and passed away on May 5th this year. Obviously it has been a terrible shock for all of us but especially my mum. We all miss him and are slowly beginning to adjust to life without him. Dad was always very proud of his teaching and recalled fondly his days at Mayfield. He enjoyed seeing you and some of the other boys he taught a few years ago and shared his memories of you with us. Please could you circulate the news to the others of your group who remember Dad.
My condolences to his family, Glyn Summers was a fine man and teacher who made a lasting impression on me and many others R.I.P
I remember some singing ‘Here comes summers’, which was a popular somg at the time without the ‘s’ on the end, when we went on a walk to Fyfield. A great teacher who at the time broke the mould of the stiff and starchy type of teacher. R.I.P.
Glyn came to two of our Class of ’64 reunions and it was a huge privilege to meet him again after all these years. He was an inspirational and challenging educator all those years ago and when we met up more recently he was a great raconteur and a huge presence. We all remained in awe of his fine character. He is a sad loss. RIP Glyn.
Very sad to hear this news. He was a great teacher, even if he did throw a slipper at me for misbehaving in class. May God be with the family. It was a good time during my youth, especially the rugby. RIP ‘Sir’.
I am so pleased that I had the chance to meet up with Glyn at our reunion and have a good chat to him over a few beers. He was such a huge influence on me and the only teacher who called me by my first name (almost unheard of in those days).. His wise words still echo in my head when I am composing a sentence, even now: Never say “all of a sudden’, it’s not urgent enough, use ‘suddenly’ instead”, I can hear the Welsh lilt now ! He really tried hard to get me to play rugby but I always resisted as cricket was more my game so it was ironic that I won a rugby ball that he signed when we last met. I’m sure that everyone has a memory of that special teacher, for me it was Glyn and he will be sadly missed. A great educator, a gentleman and a friend.
Very sad to hear the news of Glyns passing. He introduced me to rugby, a game I played for many years after school. He was a great teacher and was well respected. RIP Sir.
My condolences to Mr Summers family. He had a huge impact on me and was always someone I looked up to and respected at school. It is obvious that he touched the lives of many students through his years as a teacher. RIP Glyn.
A good teacher who used the slipper to enforce discipline, but only when fully deserved. Still remember his long stride when walking across the playground. One of my favourite Mayfield masters along with Mr. Ken Weetch (his friend) and the late Mr. Harold Cutting. Good people all. RIP Mr. Summers.
He was a great teacher who taught me many things I used all through my life. Without him I would not have played rugby, a game which gave me great enjoyment. RIP Glyn
A great teacher. Its probably safe to say he is one of those teachers that made a difference to many pupils future lives. RIP Mr Summers
Like all of the other Ex Mayfield pupils I have fond memories of Glyn and had exchanged emails with him over recent years. A teacher of the highest quality who above all could get pupils like me motivated in English as a subject.
His Welsh love of Rugby spilled over to pupils like myself to enjoy the game, but getting to know him even better on the trip to Denmark which Mr Cutting and Mr Weetch also did was special.
Thank you Glyn not just from me but the many hundreds of young people you helped develop, you were not just an outstanding teacher but a very special person.
So sorry to hear of Glyn Summers’s passing. He was truly inspirational to me encouraging me in to the house drama competiton which we in Wood House won jointly in 1963. I went on to work for newspapers, the BBC and Independent radio stations. I was so pleased to reconnect with him and his wife Jan when my Kennedy tribute programme was broadcast by Radio 4 in November 2003. He said he would give me an “A” for it! Judging what I have seen on this website, you won’t be forgotten.Thank-you Glyn, RIP.
I remember ‘Mr Summers’ well. One of three teachers who left their passion for learning with me. Thank you Sir, much love to his family who I’m sure will miss him very much.
After over 50 years leaving school there aren’t any other teachers that I still remember and respected as much. A good teacher who you could have a laugh with but not at anyone else’s expense.
Thank you for everything.
Don’t worry, Rugy is the game played in heaven. Glyn will now be well contented. Farewell, but forever remembered.
Just to pass on my sincere condolences to all the family Glyn has left behind. He was a great English teacher and could always give sound advice when ever asked. He really helped me in everything I asked of him. He was firm but very fair and earned my trust and respect as I grew up in the school. I did make contact with him via Mayfield School website and sent him some jokes and e-mails. I am very sad for the loss of Glyn, but his memory lives on in my thoughts for ever.
I remember Glyn Summers with great affection. He was an inspirational teacher of English and a great form teacher. I looked forward to his lessons and looked up to him as a man.
I will light a Candle Glyn – you made a real difference – especially to my rear end when I glued your book cupboard – thank you.
Glyn Summers effortlessly commanded respect without shouting or bawling at his class. His dedication and keenness to do his best for you shone through. I wonder how many pupils he set on a course of success in their lives during his career, both at Mayfield and after?
He was one of the best! RIP
Sorry to hear of “Mr Summers” unexpected death, just prior it seems to a ’64 class reunion. That’s sad.
I’m probably class ’66. I think he was my form master as well as English teacher (Andrew Anderson – the only boy I ever kept up with – and Ron Peters (a cycling friend) who sat next to Andy (at the front – I sat at the back trying not to be noticed) were very fond of him and the banter was always engaging). I never forgot being slippered, with a smile (his not mine) after stupidly being caught the last boy banging his desk lid.
When he left for Chepstow he invited anyone passing to call in. And before he had time to regret it I was there (a keen hitch-hiker at the time), sleeping on his fluffy, white, new three-piece, which I sullied with blood from a small cut sustained in taking off my rucksack. I remember his Ford Anglia and his support in a sponsored walk to Southend (along the A127!). I vaguely recall he lived out that way.
I loved Headmaster Hicks, with his frightening long gait and beautiful soft blue eyes. He kept discipline with the boys by visibly worrying the teachers (or pretending to – nice one). I delivered his newspapers. He had to approve my employment between 7.00 and 8.00am. He and everyone else knew newspapers were delivered between 6.00 and 7.00am. We understood each other! I also delivered newspapers Kenny Ball, who was taught to play the trumpet by (?) who was a great friend of the Headmaster (they used to arrange visits to Saturday concerts at the Festival Hall, which I much enjoyed).
Not the right occasion I know but I can picture three of the above contributors, Norman Rhodes, Norman Brown (who I vaguely recalled tied Mr Larkin’s shoes together during a science lesson only to be persuaded to untie them again out of sympathy for the snoozing old boy), and Peter Singleton, with whom I moved on to Wanstead County High. It didn’t suite me there and I wished I had gone to Rush Green College with everyone else.
Glyn was certainly part of the new mission (the old, ex-military others not to be sniffed at). And if he pursued his career, following Mayfield, with the same love of his subject and subjects (and it sounds like he did) it was a life well lived. I’m religious: rest eternal grant him o Lord, and let light eternal shine upon him.
I was so very sorry to learn of the recent sad news of Glyn’s passing. He was a teaching colleague and very good friend for the 5 years at the start of my teaching career at Mayfield School. Glyn was highly respected by both staff and pupils as an inspirational teacher who strove for the highest standards from all around him. A motivator who was able to stimulate and inspire pupils to succeed and achieve high grades. His wit and repartee was second to none and I well remember the constant friendly Celtic exchanges between us as to who expelled who from which country. I was so pleased to have caught up with Glyn at a recent school reunion and after 50 years carry on a conversation as normal. My sincere condolences to Glyn’s family. Thank you for strong memories Glyn – I won’t mention the rugby.
A remarkable force within the life of that school. I have only had but the briefest exchange of emails in recent times and regret that the opportunity to extend and deepen them has now gone. I felt humbled that despite the 45 years that had passed between my last face to face encounter with him and my first email that he still knew of me. A treasure that sadly for us that remain, has moved on to a better place.
I remember Mr Summers as a Welshman and rugby player trying to get me to play rugby as I was in the school football team. I did try but he did not succeed. As an English teacher he was very interesting and one of the books we had to study was The Pied Piper by Neville Shute. A book which I still read today. I also remember being slippered for doing nothing wrong, well I thought I had not!
Thank you all for the lovely tributes to Dad we have been very touched by all the lovely memories shared.
Kate Sedgwick (Glyn’s Daughter)
Many thoughts of a very kind and capable teacher, RIP, sir
May I offer my sincere, albeit belated condolences, to Mr Summers’ family, including Mrs Summers. I recall them both as excellent teachers and decent people when I was a pupil at Chepstow School, towards the end of both of their teaching careers, 1984-1991. At some point in that time frame, Mr Saunders was accosted by a television camera crew in London and asked his view on Adam Faith – I am not sure if anyone remembers that – I was astonished when I saw it on the television! I now live not all that far from Mayfield, in Dagenham.
I remember Glyn Summers well. He was a lively and forthright teacher. We always ate at the same table for our school diner and had many a lively discussion mainly on faith and belief. Bill chalk would often join in. I also remember visiting his family . he had a young son named Robert at the time. These debates were dominated by ardent socialists.