Ann Roques – 6s 32-38
Ann Seymour Roques 29/1/1922-5/1/19
Submitted by Penelope Roques (Daughter)
Ann followed her sister Pen to CH in Hertford and was in turn followed by her brother James, who went to Horsham. Her mother, Ada, was widowed and left with two older sons and three young children who were sponsored to attend CH by her husband’s firm. Ada managed to combine five different jobs as a pharmacist to aid the family finances.
Many good things came out of Ann’s time at Christ Hospital. Most valuable were the friends for life that she made. Eileen Evans was later my Godmother, and as a family we were very fond of Heather and Yvonne Davis and Mother’s brother Jim was at school with their brother Colin. Mother went to concerts with Yvonne and Heather when Colin was conducting.
Ann was in Sixes and faithfully attended many reunions. We were brought up on how Miss Craig was a truly terrifying headmistress. My father later met her and said “What, that sweet old lady!”. Ann got her own back by finding his Admiral “simply charming”.
Ann had beautiful handwriting which was admired by all. She explained that she left school (owing to problems doing maths) before she was in a class senior enough to be allowed to do joined up writing. (As she left at 16, this seems amazing, but Pen confirmed that indeed joined up handwriting was something she had to stop doing when she went to CH.) Her writing was certainly legible as well as beautiful. She always used a fountain pen and blue ink.
Ann got her colours for diving and swimming at a very young age which helped as neither she nor Pen were particularly academic. On a visit once to CH she was telling a present day attendee how little time they were allowed in the swimming pool and wasn’t it awful when the girl said it was still the same and she found it quite normal! Short swimming sessions, not being allowed to put their hands in their pockets, strictness and awful food seemed to be her main complaints. Following her complaints about my cooking (which is of course is marvellous) I am not sure I quite how much I believe her now.
On leaving CH at sixteen Ann enrolled on a pre-nursing course and then became a student nurse at the North Middlesex Hospital. She was very popular as her CH Bible was wonderful for flattening their starched caps before they were folded and worn. The academic side came very easily so she had obviously benefitted from CH. Mother was off duty the night that a third of the North Middlesex was wiped out by a bomb in the second world war. She immediately became involved in evacuating patients and said the worst thing was that all the manhole covers had blown away which made it very treacherous.
Ann married her cousin Stephen and lived very near her sister Pen, who also had children of a similar age to my brother and myself. Meeting up was a daily occurrence and greatly added to our life.