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 Post subject: Re: Joan Baker/Rosamund/Triplets/Problem
PostPosted: 28 Mar 2017, 13:21 
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Mabel wrote:
I (shameless plug here) wrote a brief article on this for FOCS magazine a few editions ago. My conclusion was that EBD suddenly got cold feet about her ability to keep the series going/Chambers willingness to publish it for long enough to give Len her year as head girl. Rosamund had been given her reward, because EBD always liked her, but if she did her full term, and if EBD expired/Chambers pulled the plug, then Len might never get to be head girl.


Haha, I like this idea!

Although, as Audrey points out, it is weird EBD didn't make more of a splash about Len becoming HG - maybe she felt guilty cos she knew she'd done the dirty on Ros :(


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 Post subject: Re: Joan Baker/Rosamund/Triplets/Problem
PostPosted: 29 Mar 2017, 00:40 
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It is interesting that in the books where the triplets are prefects, there's actually very little story time spent on the prefects as a group. For example, in earlier books, we usually find out which prefect does which job, often via depiction of a prefects meeting, or references through the text. The last year of the series in particular, we get almost no information outside the Big Three, which we get in detail, and Con is appointed magazine prefect instead of elected by her peers, the way it was normally done.

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 Post subject: Re: Joan Baker/Rosamund/Triplets/Problem
PostPosted: 29 Mar 2017, 09:21 
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It would have been very interesting to see Len chairing a meeting with girls like Betty, Alicia, Heather and Ricki, who were older than her (and the CS usually puts a lot of emphasis on age) and arguably had stronger personalities. I think most of them left at the end of Summer Term, but they were certainly still there when Len first became HG.

The original leader of all that gang was Jo Scott, but she was removed from the scene before she could become HG.

Mabel, that makes a lot of sense :D . But poor Ros still deserved a proper exit storyline! (Maybe Joey ran her over with the minibus so that Len could become HG.) Yseult, Emerence and Josette all left suddenly as well, but explanations were given.

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 Post subject: Re: Joan Baker/Rosamund/Triplets/Problem
PostPosted: 29 Mar 2017, 13:25 
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Ros and Jo Scott both just vanish!

Len is liked and respected by her peers so I can't see her having much trouble with them. She's also not the first HG to be younger than most of her fellow prefects. But it is weird that we don't see more of the prefects at this time - although just as well as we'd probably just have continual repetitions of Len is responsible/Margot is bad/Con is a dreamer, and everyone else in the background. I think EBD is most comofrtable writing about Middle aged girls. Maybe that's why she stuck with this age group in the later books.

jennifer wrote:
It is interesting that in the books where the triplets are prefects, there's actually very little story time spent on the prefects as a group. For example, in earlier books, we usually find out which prefect does which job, often via depiction of a prefects meeting, or references through the text. The last year of the series in particular, we get almost no information outside the Big Three, which we get in detail, and Con is appointed magazine prefect instead of elected by her peers, the way it was normally done.


We do see this happen occasionally. I think it is Kathie Robertson who gets chosen by the staff to be the 'kids special'. Actually in the case of magazine editor I think it makes much more sense for it to be a staff appointment than an elected one (with the girl being elected because her father is a journalist, half the time :roll: )


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 Post subject: Re: Joan Baker/Rosamund/Triplets/Problem
PostPosted: 31 Mar 2017, 07:23 
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jennifer wrote:
It is interesting that in the books where the triplets are prefects, there's actually very little story time spent on the prefects as a group. For example, in earlier books, we usually find out which prefect does which job, often via depiction of a prefects meeting, or references through the text. The last year of the series in particular, we get almost no information outside the Big Three, which we get in detail, and Con is appointed magazine prefect instead of elected by her peers, the way it was normally done.


I always wondered how and why the staff would intervene to choose the girl. And wouldn't that be seen as favouritism?

And while I can see why they gave it to Con to help her be more assertive, what happens if another prefect says they want the job as well?

Is there an awkward silence at the first prefects meeting as Len explains it's been given to her sister. Not to mention the owner's niece. And Mrs Maynard's daughter ...

And given that there were almost 20 prefects by Len's day, the voting and allocation of jobs would go on forever. :D

Cheers,
Joyce

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 Post subject: Re: Joan Baker/Rosamund/Triplets/Problem
PostPosted: 31 Mar 2017, 07:55 
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IIRC, it was Frances Coleman who was chosen as Juniors' prefect. It was just a plot device to give Eilunedd an excuse to moan that there hadn't been a proper vote and try to make out that Peggy was being dictatorial, but the idea was that Frances was good with the younger kids.

Con was the obvious choice for magazine prefect and would probably have been elected anyway, but I think EBD wanted it to seem that she was equal with Len and Margot, who'd both been chosen for particular jobs, rather than just being one of the common herd.

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 Post subject: Re: Joan Baker/Rosamund/Triplets/Problem
PostPosted: 31 Mar 2017, 09:24 
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Alison H wrote:
Con was the obvious choice for magazine prefect and would probably have been elected anyway, but I think EBD wanted it to seem that she was equal with Len and Margot, who'd both been chosen for particular jobs, rather than just being one of the common herd.


Yes, the occasions when the staff intervenes there are good reasons given for it. But it is done so randomly as if they are not sure the prefects would be able to sort out that job for themselves.

With Con, HG and sport prefect are both head appointments and have been from the beginning of the school along with second prefect. But giving Con the magazine editor job comes out of nowhere.

Given how careful Miss Annersley was about not appointing Bride to HG in case it was seen as favouritism, it seems odd it doesn't occur to her this time.

And given this was the CS, only someone like Deirdre (!) would have said "I would really have liked a shot at that job and it's just been handed to Con on a silver platter."

Cheers,
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 Post subject: Re: Joan Baker/Rosamund/Triplets/Problem
PostPosted: 31 Mar 2017, 11:40 
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I've always found it a little odd that just because someone loves reading and writing they are the "obvious" choice for magazine editor/prefect. Wouldn't being an editor involve a lot of hard work and organising and nagging people for submissions? Not sure that really sounds like dreamy Con's cup of tea.
And I say that as a dreamer who loves reading and writing!

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 Post subject: Re: Joan Baker/Rosamund/Triplets/Problem
PostPosted: 31 Mar 2017, 13:50 
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Maybe that's why they make Con take on the job, to force her to be a bit more grounded?

Do we ever see a girl being bitter because she hasn't been made Games Pre? I'd have thought if anything that would actually be a more popular job than HG.


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 Post subject: Re: Joan Baker/Rosamund/Triplets/Problem
PostPosted: 01 Apr 2017, 02:24 
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RubyGates wrote:
I've always found it a little odd that just because someone loves reading and writing they are the "obvious" choice for magazine editor/prefect. Wouldn't being an editor involve a lot of hard work and organising and nagging people for submissions?


Having been a real editor, not a school mag editor, yes a lot of organising and chasing people up is required - and I was chasing up people who's job it was to write for the mag. And you also need a LOT of tact if you want the author to change or rewrite something.

And yes, apparently it was given to Con to help her be more 'wide awake'.

Cheers,
Joyce

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 Post subject: Re: Joan Baker/Rosamund/Triplets/Problem
PostPosted: 20 Jun 2017, 00:59 
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Alison H wrote:

Just looked up when free university places came in, but it was 1962 so too late for Rosamund.


My parents went to university in the seventies and got free/subsidised places dependent on parental income. My dads parents were landowning farmers and my mums were a university lecturer and headmistress, so I doubt they got full subsidy.

Notice how I give professions for my mums parents, they were thoroughly working class but both passed the 11 plus, for my grandad this put him in a ridiculously good school, overlapping with a future chancellor of the exchequer. He attended Cambridge University on a full scholarship from academic merit, I recall him mentioning it was a good job he did as his parents wouldn't have filled out paperwork for anything partial, which was available in various places and various ways, I don't know details, he went in the fifties. My gran also attended teacher training college at Homerton, now part of the university. I've no idea how her course was paid for, but her parents were in no position to help, maybe teacher training college was different to university for funding. I think whilst school was a random north London grammar help with info from teachers there was important.

As for children of clergy, there was and still is a lot of help out there for them, typically the income doesn't fit the social class of the parents, clergy are often public school and oxbridge educated but then can't pay for their children to have the same. Many public schools have scholarship funds for such purposes, I have two friends who went to public school for sixth form because it was the same one their now clergy father went to. It seems it would be pretty normal for clergy who have gained money to pay it forwards.

This is much less the case now I suspect as clergy wives are more likely to work, I know a surprising number who are doctors, plenty are still ex public school but I get a feeling of that being reduced in importance.


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 Post subject: Re: Joan Baker/Rosamund/Triplets/Problem
PostPosted: 20 Jun 2017, 15:52 
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annekh510 wrote:
My gran also attended teacher training college at Homerton, now part of the university. I've no idea how her course was paid for, but her parents were in no position to help, maybe teacher training college was different to university for funding.

I went to teacher training college completely free in 1965, and that included room, meals and so on. I also got a full grant for all sundry expenses, such as books,etc, as we were very poor, to say the least. I switched over to the BEd degree course in my second year, the first year it was offered - which led to 4 years of study, as opposed to 3, but it still all came free. I know how extremely lucky I was, when I see what's happening today.

Joyce wonders whether there would have been a sudden silence from the prefects when Len announced Con's appointment, but I'm thinking they would almost have been expecting it, since Len and Margot are Head and Games, and Con, the third trip, is so bookish and creative. Why not make it three for three? :roll:

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 Post subject: Re: Joan Baker/Rosamund/Triplets/Problem
PostPosted: 21 Jun 2017, 10:14 
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MaryR wrote:
Joyce wonders whether there would have been a sudden silence from the prefects when Len announced Con's appointment, but I'm thinking they would almost have been expecting it, since Len and Margot are Head and Games, and Con, the third trip, is so bookish and creative. Why not make it three for three? :roll:


A shrug and a "yeah, whatever" type of response. :D Maybe.

Cheers,
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 Post subject: Re: Joan Baker/Rosamund/Triplets/Problem
PostPosted: 21 Jun 2017, 13:43 
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Thinking about the relative incomes of the Gays and the Lilleys, I think it is quite possible that the the Gays were poorer than the Lilleys, in terms of income. Vicars are not known (at least in literature - I don't know about life) for having generous incomes. Mr Lilley, on the other hand, has, when we meet him, a fairly high up job. Rosamund says that while he started at the bottom, he now works mainly in the greenhouses, which indicates significant advancement - and probably what would be judged at the time as a good salary for skilled labour.

The difference would in their expenses and disposable income. The Gays probably had no housing expenses, the Vicarage being provided as part of the job. I don't know what their part in maintainance and bills would have been. They had one daughter, who was educated at home until age twelve. They may or may not have had additional financial help fom their family. I think Mr Gay was lame, which may have meant some addtional war pension or something added to his official salary.

The Lilleys, on the other hand, paid rent on a reasonable sized house with a garden. (I'm sure it didn't occur to EBD that people like the Lilleys might own their own house). They paid full taxes and bills. They also had six children to feed, clothe and educate. All of that adds up to a significant dent in their disposable income.

So I think that Mrs Gay might have been technically accurate in saying that at one time they were poorer even than the Lilleys - but she has failed to think through the implications of their income and lifestyles.

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 Post subject: Re: Joan Baker/Rosamund/Triplets/Problem
PostPosted: 21 Jun 2017, 14:22 
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Mr Lilley would have received a tax allowance for each of his children for as long as they were at school or in some kind of college place, perhaps as a day-release student who was in an apprenticeship.

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 Post subject: Re: Joan Baker/Rosamund/Triplets/Problem
PostPosted: 21 Jun 2017, 15:24 
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Jennie wrote:
Mr Lilley would have received a tax allowance for each of his children for as long as they were at school or in some kind of college place, perhaps as a day-release student who was in an apprenticeship.


Not for the eldest and at that time it was age-limited. I can't remember when I (as eldest) dropped off the radar but when I went up in 1967 I wasn't, at that time a "qualifying child". The tax allowance for the eldest came in as my sister (born 1956) was finishing school. We'd lost it completely as I and my brother reached the magic age. My sister was given it as an "allowance" by my mother (and IIRC it was paid to the mother) to get her used to managing money, buying own clothes etc before she went off to university.

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 Post subject: Re: Joan Baker/Rosamund/Triplets/Problem
PostPosted: 21 Jun 2017, 16:19 
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One of the reasons that tax allowances for children were eventually abolished is that they didn't benefit the working class who didn't earn enough for a "tax allowance" to be used. (The wage rate for horticultural labourers at this time was about £6 and 5 shillings a week - £325 per annum and horticultural and agricultural wages tended to be low). I believe it amounted to £85 a year (remembering that this was the amount on which you didn't pay tax - not the actual value of the allowance) and the married couple's allowance was £210.

Family allowances - paid direct to families regardless of income - were originally paid for the second child and and subsequent children up to the date they finished school (there are some complications but we needn't worry too much about those). It wasn't paid for children in apprenticeships or in other training.

I would have thought that Mr Lilley's earnings would have been too low through most of his working life (up to the time of "Problem") to have benefited from the tax allowances, and family allowances did not come in until after the second world war (ie several years after Rosamund was born.


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 Post subject: Re: Joan Baker/Rosamund/Triplets/Problem
PostPosted: 21 Jun 2017, 17:02 
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Victoria wrote:
Family allowances - paid direct to families regardless of income - were originally paid for the second child and and subsequent children up to the date they finished school (there are some complications but we needn't worry too much about those). It wasn't paid for children in apprenticeships or in other training.


Thanks, Victoria. That's what I was trying to remember. I remember my mother saying that it would have come in very useful when she stopped work (as was usual for a teacher in the late 40s) after I was born but before my brother was born (i.e the 2.5 ish years she had only one child). She went back to supply teaching when my brother was very young. There was an age-gap of five years between my younger siblings.

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 Post subject: Re: Joan Baker/Rosamund/Triplets/Problem
PostPosted: 21 Jun 2017, 17:33 
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Miriam wrote:
Thinking about the relative incomes of the Gays and the Lilleys, I think it is quite possible that the the Gays were poorer than the Lilleys, in terms of income. Vicars are not known (at least in literature - I don't know about life) for having generous incomes. Mr Lilley, on the other hand, has, when we meet him, a fairly high up job. Rosamund says that while he started at the bottom, he now works mainly in the greenhouses, which indicates significant advancement - and probably what would be judged at the time as a good salary for skilled labour.

The difference would in their expenses and disposable income. The Gays probably had no housing expenses, the Vicarage being provided as part of the job. I don't know what their part in maintainance and bills would have been. They had one daughter, who was educated at home until age twelve. They may or may not have had additional financial help fom their family. I think Mr Gay was lame, which may have meant some addtional war pension or something added to his official salary.

The Lilleys, on the other hand, paid rent on a reasonable sized house with a garden. (I'm sure it didn't occur to EBD that people like the Lilleys might own their own house). They paid full taxes and bills. They also had six children to feed, clothe and educate. All of that adds up to a significant dent in their disposable income.

So I think that Mrs Gay might have been technically accurate in saying that at one time they were poorer even than the Lilleys - but she has failed to think through the implications of their income and lifestyles.


Oh trust me, clergy families did not (and probably still don't) have generous incomes.
We grew up as vicarage children in the 1960s and 1970s. Huge rambling Victorian vicarages - 9 or 10 big bedrooms, I used to imagine the Chalet School moving there! The housing itself was free but the heating, lighting etc etc was down to my Dad to pay. And in those days vicar's wives didn't go out to work - especially as we lived in country parishes. The houses was always freezing, we might have one room with a radiator on, but everywhere else was a case of 'put on another jumper'. And usually it was Dad's study with the heating, cos of parish meetings.
Many vicars had more than one parish - at one point we had seven, and it was ninety miles from one end to the other....car, petrol etc etc
We had a field to play in - enormous, bigger than a football pitch - but Dad had to keep it in good condition - or rent it to someone local (who then drove their cows up our driveway at milking time!)

My sister and I did not qualify for education grants as the local schools were considered good ones. My brother later did get a scholarship to a good public school (and grew up as a drug dealing thief).
However we did qualify at the age of 11 for uniform grants from the local council on the grounds of low income, and we had free school dinners for most of our schooldays, on the same grounds.

Try going to tea at the local manor house, as the vicar's daughters had to, meeting girls who went to school in a Malory Towers/St Clares/Chalet world - and having to compare your silver disc entitling you to free meals, with their menus, issued weekly on nice printed cards.........

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 Post subject: Re: Joan Baker/Rosamund/Triplets/Problem
PostPosted: 24 Jun 2017, 15:29 
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Going back to Rosamund, by leaving at Christmas, she not only missed out on two terms as HG, she also missed out on A Levels, which she would have taken the next summer term. I know some girls, such as Emerence and the Ozanne twins, didn't take A levels, but they never got as far as the Sixth form in any case, and weren't intending to go in for careers. Rosamund was someone who really needed the qualifications.

I'm sure the Gays' scholarship would have been intended to last until Ros came to the end of her schooldays, and if she had to leave purely for financial reasons, the School would somehow have found the means to make it possible for her to finish her last year.

The Lilleys strike me as being people who would sacrifice a lot to give their children opportunities they didn't have; I don't see them bringing Rosamund home for anything less than a family member having a life-threatening illness.

I do think she was shoved out to make way for Len. The triplets did their A Levels that summer too, and normally would have expected to leave when Rosamund did. Then presumably EBD remembered, or someone pointed out, that the triplets were still only seventeen and so she could give them another year doing 'specialised work'.

(I wonder if they'd have had to pay fees if they'd spent that extra year at St Mildred's, rather than at the School proper?)


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