October 9, 2019

Service, sacrifice & whalemeat sausage: new book about Leighton Park & World War II

In 1939, Edgar Castle, Headmaster of Leighton Park from 1928 to 1948, wrote these words to Charles Evans, Headmaster from 1910 to 1928:

‘I didn’t think I should have to pilot LP through a war as my predecessor had done’.

Only twenty-one years since the end of the horrific First World War, the Second World War had broken out, and the world was plunged into a new period of death, destruction, horror and heartbreak.

The School’s Archivist John Allinson, Old Leightonian Charlotte Smith and Alumni Relations Manager Penny Wallington are launching a new book  “Great Ideals Reaffirmed: Leighton Park and the Second World War” on 17th October,

The school was led through the ensuing wartime years by a man of great integrity, vigour and commitment. Headmaster Edgar Castle did his utmost to keep the LP ship steady, and his personal interventions in the treatment of the  Jewish refugee boys who came to the school are particularly noteworthy.

The book covers life at Leighton Park during the war years and explores the dilemmas of those who had to make that terrible decision of whether or not to take up arms. It also puts faces to the names of most of those who fell, remembered on  the school’s War Memorial. Their tragic stories have been almost unbearable to read and are a privilege to tell.

Service and sacrifice were required of everyone during the war years, albeit in different forms. From the stories of our war dead, Old Leightonians in  the armed services, the Friends Ambulance Unit  to life at the school itself.

The book costs £8.50 and is available from the Alumni Office: call 0118 9879630 or email archives@leightonpark.com.

Old black and white photo of horses pulling plough in front of the Leighton Park building

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