As to that plane crash (on the tennis courts, I believe), no, I was not there at the time. However, I did chat about the event with those who were and always understood it was a Spitfire – but you may very well be correct. Importantly there was the story which sticks in my mind and is very believable, that the boys looking out of the window and staring in awe, were sternly told to get their ….’ heads down, pay attention and get on with your work’. This is so typical of those days and times and very much tells that we were on the edge of a strange and false normality. Was it Mr. Coulson, an English Master?
The Battle of Britain is legendary enough and, remember, Kenley was just a very brisk lunch time trot away from school. I have very vivid memories of, with encouragement from a classmate, crawling under barbed wire to invade a hanger, steal some green cordite and 303 live ammunition , return to school and then take the stuff home. In due course I experimented. This was my first adventure into rocket science and munitions. I survived but my Father descended on me from a great height.
Then there was the episode with the phosphorus re claimed from Farthing Downs and setting part of the School on fire as we cut it up in the cycle sheds to share amongst us !!
This is the article that Terry is commenting on: