St George's House,
Northern Police Orphanage. 1898-1956  Harrogate, Yorkshire, England.




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Sports and Physical Education

Keeping the children healthy and active was definitely high on the list of Miss Knocker's priorities and she, along with the governing committee, encouraged participation in sporting activities and physical education.
These activities included football, netball, cricket, rollerskating, tennis, rounders, athletics, hockey and gymnastics. The Phys Ed Master for the boys was a Mr Kendrew and also Mr Harold Styan, the latter also taught the boys PE, Gymnastics, Football and Cricket. For the girls the PE Mistress was a Miss Hughes followed later by Miss Priestley. Exercises in the Gym for both boys and girls included rope climbing, vaulting the horse, walking the bar, parallel bars and wall frame climbing. After school, winter and summer, the children would walk in crocodile to the Harrogate Swimming Baths where they were taught to swim and dive.Each child had his/her own St George's swimming costume and the older children, once they had learned to swim, helped to teach the younger ones in the shallow end.

St George's held a Sports Day, usually in July each year, when children would participate in all manner of sports events. The City of Bradford Police, with the support of the Chief Constable Mr Joseph Farndale and later Chief Constable Mr Harry Ambler, took it upon themselves to prepare and carry through the programme of events, this included providing prizes and supervising the running of all the events, no mean feat given the number of children and events involved. They enjoyed this responsibility and work so much that they saw it as their prerogative to carry it out on an annual basis.

St George's Cricket eleven, 1934.                                           St George's Netball Team.
Back Row: left to right. William H. Bryan, Richard H. Bridge           Irene Owen (second from the right)
                                John Braithwaite, Robin Kirk.
Seated: left to right.    Harry Higton, Cyril Madew,
                                John Webster, Herbert Thorpe
                                Vincent Helyer.
Sitting on grass:          Hector Smith, Tom Berry.

   The girls in the Gym.                                                         St George's Football Team.

Little girls had to run too.                                                     Boys and girls doing their Gym workout.

Boys chariot race with jockeys, Bill Newton, Ken Brown and        Girls swimming lesson.
Sidney Guiver.

Roller skating behind St George's.                                            Sports Day, and the Boys giving a fitness demonstration.

Girls stretching exercises.                                                       ...and a potato race.


St George's Cricket Teams c 1937                                         St George's Football Team c 1940                   
Players:                                                                           Players:
Back Row, Joey Lancaster, Harry Bagot, Joe Wilson,                Back row, Bernard Harland, Norman Bryan, Stanley Carter        
George Latham. Mid Row, Colin Arnold, Arthur Haygarth            Edwin Helyer, Geoffrey Whittaker, Jim Shepherd, John Williams  

(Capt) Sydney Bird, Raymond Harland, Richard Haygarth,          Front Row,George Bentham, Norman Waddington, Colin Arnold      
Front Row, Arthur Watson, eleventh player unknown.               Gerald Jones, Tom Ruddick.

                                     Learning to swim.    

                                    St George's boys, football group, photo c1915  

                               St George's House Football Team c1942 - 43
                        Tom Williams       Jim Shepherd      Stanley Carter    Malcolm Tait
                        Jack Hopkinson    Peter Waddington     John Williams   Alfred Lewis   Bernard Harland
                                                                        Kenneth Brown


The Sports Day at St George's was a big event in Harrogate and all the local dignitaries, plus the children's surviving parent, the 'inmates' from St Andrew's and ordinary local people were all invited to attend. Various cups were competed for, including the House Cup, which saw teams representing the three houses, Gurney, Fawkes and Ingilby vying against one another for supremacy.


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