Frank Hendry

Photo from Lost Newcastle member Nadine Rothapfel
Photo from Lost Newcastle member Nadine Rothapfel

Frank ‘Doc’ Hendry – Science Master at Newcastle Tech High in the 1950’s/60’s.

Comment by Lost Newcastle members:

David Schofield He was feared and respected by the students. At assembly, he wore his graduation gown and looked very imposing. During my Intermediate Certificate year I decided that wopping school to go to the beach was the better option. Consequently I missed a lot of lessons and I am sure my certificate results were extremely poor. Doc Hendry played bowls with my father and although I never asked , I’m sure that he may have made a few “adjustments” so that I was able to get an apprenticeship.

In those days it was common to give your teacher or Master a derogatory nickname so I think that “Doc” shows the respect that students held for him. I’ll give you a little glimpse of how it was at Tech’ High in those days. Weekly assembly was held in the main hall. Seats were set out on either side of a centre aisle leading to a stage. Your Grandfather , the headmaster and all the other Masters then paraded to the stage (some in graduation gowns) to give their reports on the efforts of the students and the sports master Bob Snape gave a report on the sporting achievements. No student was allowed to talk during this presentation. It was all very formal but there was one Master on stage who kept an eagle eye out for miscreants. If he spotted you the whole event was stopped while he said ” YOU ” third row down, second seat to the left ,next to the boy with red hair, Deputy Principles office NOW ! I saw you talking. And no, it wasn’t “Doc”.

Stuart Alderman Doc taught me a couple of years, 1965 & I think 1969. He wasn’t so much feared as respected…….schooling in those days had discipline and with discipline comes respect. Doc’s respect came from the cane he used for discipline. I think in 5th year (1969) he became ill and had quite an extended time off. Another science teacher was ‘Hippo’ and Joe Connelly whose after lunch practicals seemed to always fail because of his visit to The Premier. Good days at Tech High.

Doc Hendry used to have a beaker of water heating over a bunsen burner to make tea. He would then drink from the beaker while walking around the lab. The french on the board could have been by ‘mousey’ Allen or ‘chasbo’ Hocking.