1915, 2 October – Batley News

This week’s Batley News had a couple of St Mary’s references – both connected to the school. I have put in bold the names of parishioners who served with the military. And, as ever, the spelling and punctuation matches that of the newspaper.

This week the St Mary’s swimming teams chalked up further competition successes. The school had a reputation for its swimmers.

Popular Gala at Batley Baths.
Local Championship. —Fine Race.
Enthusiastic Juveniles Help Hospital and Relief Funds.

Batley Hospital and local relief funds should benefit considerably by a swimming gala held at Batley Baths on Saturday. The building was crowded, and the schoolboys’ competitions created rousing enthusiasm. In the absence of the Mayor (Councillor B. Turner), Alderman J. Whitaker, Deputy Mayor, presided. The contests provided interesting sport, and some of the finishes were very close.

The event of the evening, the 50 yards championship of Batley, for youths under 18, evoked extraordinary excitement. There were four entries, and the holder of the cup (J. Ward) again carried off the trophy. His splendid overarm stroke, which has become the admiration of the swimming youth of Batley, stood him in good stead, and he covered the distance in 34 seconds, easily outstripping his three opponents.

Another keen struggle was in the Boys’ Brigades squadron race for the Batley Hospital Cup. The first swimmer of the Purlwell team made good headway; but the second swimmer for the St. Mary’s team created most sensation by forging ahead in splendid style. St. Mary’s team won the cup amidst cheers. The St. Mary’s youths were in the limelight all the evening. Their schoolboys’ squadron won the Lister Cup, whilst N. Lynch (a St. Mary’s girl) won the Hirst Cup. Popular entertainment was provided by Professor Harry Crank, described as champion acrobatic diver of the world, his representation of the learner’s dive, the English header, back-front and forward dive, porpoise dive, grandstand dive, one-and-a-half somersault dive, Swedish somersault dive, and swallow dive, being extremely neat and instructive. Considering the limited space at his disposal the exhibition was splendid, and fully merited the applause it won.

After the last event, the chairman distributed the prizes, the winners being warmly applauded on stepping up to receive their trophies.

The starters and judges were Messrs. J. T. Wilman (Y.A.S.A.), H. Brook (Y.A.S.A.), J. Garside, E. Crawshaw, F. W. Ellam, W. B. Lister, and H. Horsfall.

The gala was organised by Mr. W. B. Lister (baths manager), who was congratulated on its splendid success.


Schoolboys’ 150 yards squadron race for Lister Cup. —Heat Winners: St Mary’s R.C. and Warwick Road.
Final: St Mary’s won in 2 mins. 29 secs.

Schoolgirls’ 25 Yards Race for Hirst Cup. —Heat Winners: A. Adams (Parish Church), H. Briggs (Parish Church), L. Roberts (Purlwell), and N. Lynch (St. Mary’s RC.).
Final: 1. Lynch, 2. A. Adams, 3. H. Briggs

Boys’ Brigades’ 150 yards Squadron Race for Batley Hospital Cup. —Winners, St Mary’s “A”; 2. Purlwell Wesleyan.

50 Yards Championship of Batley (under 18), for Batley Tradesmen’s Cup. —Final: 1 J. Ward (holder), 2 W. Riding (time, 34 secs.).

Schoolboys’ 75 Yards Squadron Race for Talbot Trophy. – Heat winners: St. Mary’s and Parish Church.
Final: St. Mary’s won.

59 Yards Scratch Race for Batley and Dewsbury Schoolboys. —Heat winners: F. Stead (Batley Parish Church), 44 secs.; C. Bailey (Warwick Road), 60 secs.; J. Phillips (St. Mary’s) 55 secs.; W. Newsome (St. Mary’s), 52 secs.
Final: 1. F. Stead. 2. W. Newsome, 3 J. Phillips.

The Notes By The Way column included a summary of an Education Committee tribute to Robert Randerson.

Singularly notable was the tribute of members of various denominations when the late Captain Robert Randerson was referred to at [the] Batley Education Committee meeting on Monday. With one accord he was described as a typical British gentleman, an ideal leader of boys, and one who introduced the spirit of his strenuous life on the football field — for he was a famous member of Batley Northern Union F.C. — into his work at St Mary’s Roman Catholic School. His lamented death at the Dardanelles was described as a loss to local education, to the town generally, and to the country. More whole-hearted appreciation could not have been desired, and when it reaches the ears of the bereaved family, along with the Committee’s resolution of sympathy, it should help alleviate their grief.

A full report of the Batley Education Committee, and their praise for Robert Randerson, also featured.

Tribute to Late Captain Randerson
Hint to Other Young Men to Copy His Patriotism

Tribute to the late Capt. Robert Randerson was paid at Batley Education Committee meeting on Monday, by gentlemen of various denominations, and hope was expressed that the example of that Roman Catholic teacher, noted as a footballer and as a gentleman, would be heartily copied…..

The only minute which evoked comment was one from the School Management and Finance Committee, deploring the death of Robert Randerson (assistant master at St. Mary’s R.C. School) in the Dardanelles, and expressing sympathy with his family, as well as appreciation of his work in the town.

Alderman H. North said everyone regretted the circumstances that led to the minute being passed. Captain Randerson was a typical gentleman, and ideal leader of boys —(hear, hear)— and a man appreciated by his scholars and the school managers. When the time came, he felt deeply the call to volunteer for service, and had unfortunately been cut off in the prime of his manhood. His death had removed from Batley a most capable servant of the Education Committee, and caused a vacancy it would be difficult to fill. The town was poorer by his demise.

Mr. P. Grogan concurred in the sentiments of the previous speaker. At school, Capt. Randerson would be greatly missed, and his death was deplored, though it came about in the service of his country.

Mr. W. J. Ineson agreed that public reference should be made of the public regret at the premature death of one who had rendered such valuable serve to the town through the medium of the Roman Catholic School. Deceased was one of many gallant men who had served their country. He made himself a power in Batley. Whether in the vocation of sport or in educational matters, he had a place apart; and his characteristics on the football field, where the strenuous life was most in operation, were manifested in his school work, and obviously were manifested also in the daring manner in which he undertook dangerous work for the benefit of his country. Capt. Randerson’s death was a loss to the town and the nation.

County Councillor Edwin Talbot supported, not merely because deceased was an officer, but because he was the first man in connection with Batley Education Committee to fall. His loss would be felt by the town, the school managers and the scholars. That afternoon the King had been in Leeds, and as a member of the University Court he (Mr. Talbot) attended the proceedings, and by a rapid train of thought he could not help reflecting on the many “vacant places” there were in the land, and realised something of the sacrifice that was being made for King and country. Captain Randerson would be remembered as one who ably served the children, his town, and his King and country.

Alderman F. Priestley endorsed all the kindly references made to one of the most popular men in Batley annals. “What makes me specially proud of him,” the speaker added, “is that when the call came for men he nobly said, ‘I have no ties, and I feel that it is my duty to go and serve my country!’ and I feel proud we have had such a man. I only wish his example may be followed by a considerable number of young men in this town, and that they also may feel the call to duty.”….

RESOLVED, That the following transfers and appointments be approved”—….
St. Mary’s R.C. Mrs Maloney 3/4 per hour….

….The Secretary reported that the Caretaker of St. Mary’s R.C. School was on War Service and desired the appointment of a temporary substitute.