John L T Brookes Former HCS Master 1951 - 1985

Added by: PFB

The death has been announced of John Brookes who was a teacher at HCS for over 35 years.

Nicknamed Dickie by the boys, he joined as a Master in 1951 and became part of an intake of much younger members of staff to enter the school at that time under the Headship of Mr A F J Hopewell. He was initially Junior Housemaster in School House and taught Classics, having gained First Class Honours at Keble College, Oxford before the War. Following the retirement of George ( Squitty ) Hunt in 1953, John was appointed House Master. Up until that point in the schools' post war period, teachers had been made up largely of senior gentlemen, most of whom had returned to civilian life after serving their country during WWII. Indeed Dickie had the privilege of working alongside some colleagues who had even seen active service during The Great War.

During his career at HCS, JLT became coach of the HCS Cricket XI, which he enjoyed immensely. As well as taking an active interest in other extra-curricular activities, his joined the School Combined Cadet Force. John had seen active service as an Infantry Officer during the Italian Campaign ( circa. 1941/43 ) so it seemed quite appropriate that he should take the rank of Lieutenant and duly wear his medals when on duty. The Company was affiliated to the Herefordshire Light Infantry, which meant that all Officers and Cadets proudly wore the ‘post horn ‘ HLI cap badge on parade. JLT was later elevated to Captain in charge of weekly in-school CCF ops. which included the task of Training Officer. After Major Harold J. Lush retired as CCF Commanding Officer, John took on the leadership with great enthusiasm.

Although he had taken part in CCF Camps before, this time as OC, he attended all expeditions, including locations such as the Brecon Beacons and Castlemartin in Pembrokeshire.

John leaves behind his wife Trudy and two children, Anna and Jonathan, both of whom attended HCS as students during his time as a teacher.

A private family funeral was held on Thursday 13th November 2008, after which a Thanksgiving Service took place the following day at Breinton Church, Breinton, Hereford at 12 noon. Among the mourners were current members of school teaching staff as well as many former pupils who had been under his charge during nearly 35 years service at HCS.


Old Herefordians' Newsletter

Before he died, John submitted an interesting article to the Editor of the OHN which was published in the 2008 Edition under the heading ' OH Memories ' on pages 25 & 26. Apart from a full account of his service as a teacher at HCS, JLTB also lists therein 21separate items representing some special personal memories that he cherished. Many of us can I am sure identify with and share that which he has recalled.

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