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Birsay School
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Birsay School

This is one of my Grandad Bill Moar's school photos.
He is second from the left in the back row.
I'm guessing the year and I don't have any other info on the photo.
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Picture added on 23 September 2007
My uncle Jim Grieve is second from the right in the front row. He started at the Oxtro School on 1 August 1927 and if Bill Moar was from Britain, Birsay he started there on the 2 May 1927. Charlie Ballantyne is far right in the second row and Eva Spence is immediately in front of the teacher. Eva started school 1 May 1928.
Added by Cathleen Spence on 25 September 2007
Charlie Ballantyne is the boy standing next to the teacher at the end of the third row.My mother can name most of the children in the photo.
Added by Lena Tullock on 03 December 2007
Perhaps my Dad is in the photo his name was Alex Moar- can Lena Tullock please send me the names if my Dad is in this photo, Diane Fulton nee (Moar)
Added by Diane Fulton on 03 December 2007
Lena, it would be great if you could add the names.
Added by B. Moar on 03 December 2007
Diane, your Dad is third from the left in the second back row.
Added by B.Moar on 05 December 2007
Yes Bruce I will add the names - eventually!!I will need to get back to mum to remind me of some names. Charlie Ballantyne is my dad. I remember Diane's dad before he went to Canada.
Added by Lena Tullock on 06 December 2007
Here are the names my mother has said :

Row 4 L. to R Davie Taylor (Flaws), Bill Moar(Britain), Johnny Gaudie (Netherskaill), Billy Johnston (Couperhouse), Gordon Harvey (Raveyhall), Davie Leask( Newhall)

Row 3
Sydney Phillips(Mill Cottage), Gillie Comloquoy (Palace), Alex Moar (Britain), Sandy Comloquoy (Palace), George Laird (Hunto), Charlie Ballantyne (Quoylonga), Teacher Miss Drever

Row 2
Freddy Leask (Newhall), Flora Johnston (Couperhouse), Jean Moar (Britain), Betty Taylor (Leaquoy), Ivy Taylor (Flaws), AnnieMay Robertson (Quaquoy), Thelma Adamson (Marwick House), Georgina(Eenie) Robertson (Quaquoy), Agnes Laird (Newhall), Eva Spence(Palace Green), Danny Laird(Hunto)

Row 1
Jim Gaudie(Netherskaill), Jim Swanson(Downatown), Brass Twins (George & James, Old Schoolhouse), Jim Grieve (Runa), Eddie Mowat (Banks)
Interested to know if anyone agrees with this.
Added by Lena Tullock on 21 January 2008
My mum is Annie May Robertson (Quaquoy)- and Enie Robertson (Quaquoy) is my auntie
Added by Marie Macaskill on 22 August 2009
Thelma Jemima Stuart Adamson(Marwick House) was my first cousin once removed, as we share William Adamson(1854-1936). Interesting to find her name on the Stromness Academy Dux Medallists board dated 1940(photo no 23407) as I have her date of birth as 08 Oct 1920. This would have made her 19 when she became Dux!
Added by Keith Adamson on 30 October 2010
Boys outnumber girls more than two-to-one (20:9) in this photo - an unusual ratio at a time when, generally speaking, rather more females than males survived infancy.
Your exclamation-mark, Keith, regarding Thelma Adamson's age when she became Dux, is understandable. She must have been 15 when she started in secondary school, along with 11-year-olds. Yet she doesn't look older than her classmates in this picture. Could your date of birth for her be wrong?
Added by Ian Hourston on 02 November 2010
Hi Ian,

It is possible that I have her date of birth wrong as I can't verify the official source of the information. However, other people have her birth year as 1920 in their family trees and generally when you have an exact date, as opposed to just a year, this would indicate that it is correct. Having said that, it's possible that we have all taken this exact date from the same incorrect source. It could also be that some records are difficult to read and decipher due to bad writing, poor quality ink which has faded or the unfamiliar script. Sometimes you need to be a palaeographer.
Added by Keith Adamson on 05 November 2010
Hi Keith,
My records show Thelma Adamson b.8th.Oct 1920.
Started Oxtro School, Birsay 3rd.May 1926
Left Oxtro School for Stromness Academy 28th.June 1935.
From Oxtro School Records.
Added by Rae Phillips on 21 February 2012
My 2x great grandfather, George Robson (1809-1887) was was a teacher/ headmaster and that school and lived in the Old Parochial Schoolhouse, Birsay. His daughter Alexina born 1859 married William Tinch of Shapinsay (my great grandfather
Added by Margaret Patrick (nee Tinch) on 13 July 2023
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