Artist celebrates old boys with exhibition

Founded in 1874, the same year as Winston Churchill was born, Lockers Park School in Hemel Hempstead has seen thousands of boys come and go through its gates.

A recent art exhibition by artist Jane Hill, displayed in the vast grounds of the prep school, celebrated the successes of some of these old boys, who achieved much in life in fields including politics, sports, science and the military.

The most famous former pupil of Lockers Park is surely Louis Mountbatten (Admiral of the Fleet, Lord Louis Francis Albert Victor Nicholas George Mountbatten 1st Earl of Burma, KG, GCB, OM, GCSI, GCIE, GCVO, DSO, PC), a great grandson of Queen Victoria and Uncle to Prince Philip.

After leaving the school in 1913, he joined Naval cadet school and went on to become Admiral of the Fleet and was highly decorated.

Whilst at Lockers Park, he was not known for being academically gifted, but excelled at all the main sports, although he did have a reputation for having a bloody nose in the boxing ring.

Louis' cousin Prince Maurice of Battenberg was at Lockers Park from 1901 until 1904. Little is known about his time there. He went on to serve in the King's Royal Rifle Corps in the first World War, and was killed serving at Ypres in 1914.

One infamous former pupil was well-known for all the wrong reasons. Guy Burgess came to the school in 1920, and swiftly moved up through the academic ranks.

After going on to Eton and then Cambridge he was recruited as a Russian spy—becoming part of the notorious Cambridge Five spy ring that betrayed allied secrets to the Soviets before and during the Cold War.

Lord Keith Joseph, who is accredited with the creation of the GCSE, arrived at Lockers Park in 1926.

He was a star of the first XI cricket team and like many others, academically he started slowly but picked up later.

After a five year career there, he went on to Oxford and then into the Royal Artillery, eventually heading into politics. He held the Leeds North East seat for 30 years from 1956, and became housing minister and later Secretary of State for social services under Edward Heath.

Lockers Park has produced a number of successful sportsmen over the years, none more so than Mansoor Ali Khan.

Part of a lineage of rulers of the princely Indian state of Pataudi, Mansoor was captain of the First XI cricket team in 1952 and 1953.

He took apart every bowling attack he faced, scoring a total of 574 runs, averaging 95.6, and went on to be made captain of India at the age of only 21.

Many more former pupils have documented their feelings on their time at Lockers Park and Jane Hill's art piece Tempus Fugit, was literally wrapped in some of these memories.

Of her exhibition Jane says: "It was only up for a short time, to emphasise the transitory nature of childhood.

"This piece is meant to celebrate all the old boys as they have grown into men."