pally is 100

Celebrating Palmyra Primary School's Centenary in 2013


Memories from Reg Vagg

Sorry it’s been awhile between posts! The book has been keeping us busy, but now the content is all written we can concentrate on the blog and getting some of the memories up there.

Reg has submitted some great snippets of memories about the school. He attended the school from 1955 to 1960

He attended with:

Lester Vagg (brother) 1957 to 1960.  My memory of classmates has diminished with the years, but I remember….. John Hoskins, Doug Waghorne, Kevin Atkinson, Les Chetwyn, ? Jackson, Teresa ?, Julie Hansen, Vicki ?, Gwen ?, Ken ?.

Here are his memories:

Class Rooms and Teachers

As I remember, the grades began in the eastern wing, moved to the southern wing and by grade 6/7 you were in the western wing.

1955 – Grade 1, Miss Moss

1956 – Grade 2, ??

1957 – Grade 3, Mr J. Cocks

1958 – Grade 4, Mrs Rowley

1959 – Grade 5 Miss R Ferguson until about July, then Mrs Gay

1960 – Grade 6, Mr J Desland.

1961 – Moved to Brentwood Primary

The Headmaster, at least from 1957 was Mr T. Ward.

The Gardener was a very large man (as I recall) with a moustache. I was surprised to see his photograph in the West Australian perhaps 7  to 10 years ago and an article about his retirement. He must have been at Palmyra for close to 50 years. I can recall him sharing a large pomegranate with myself and a mate down by the incinerator.

General Memories

Maybe 1956/57?, the school boundary fence was extended to block Tamar St. The block of bush to the north of the school was cleared and made into an oval. A water bore was sunk near the Tamar St entrance.

The bike racks were under a large tuart tree by Mckimmie/Tamar St. From there you could sometimes see the black puffs in the sky and hear the muffled crumps of the Leighton Battery when they were on exercise.

On the rare occasions when we were able to buy our lunch, we went to a deli/general store on the corner of Aurelian and McKimmie.  We were allowed unlimited access to that store during our lunch break. Maybe around 1958 the P&C or their forerunner began to supply lunch one or two days a week for a minimal cost. My favourite was a polony and tomato sauce roll.  We ate lunch in a wooden lunch room on the northern edge of the assembly area, but later moved into the undercroft under the eastern wing (which was much cooler in summer)

Most families owned one car, and there very few lifts to school. Most of us walked or rode bikes, trikes or scooters.  The traffic was much less than today and I can only recall two accidents with kids involved. There were few footpaths or kerbs and we walked along the road verge. Walking to school I would pass Millers Bakery on the corner of Hammad and Baal with its wonderful smells of fresh bread and horses.  Millers had stables and horse paddocks there and bread was delivered daily by horse and cart.

We attended swimming lessons at the Bicton Baths.  Swan river whalers and hypothermia were obviously not considered then. I wasn’t too keen and was afraid of the jelly fish and the crabs. I never did learn to swim there.

Playground and Games

There was some gym equipment in the sandy area to the east of the school, but mostly we played “all over red rover”, catch, and cricket/foolball when the oval was available. When little, I remember we played “cars’ under the moreton bay fig tree by Tamar place, using half bricks for cars and making roads etc. I know I squashed a finger between two of those bricks and was treated by a grade 7 girl who took me to the office and applied bandaids. Marbles were also a big thing. We had names for the various types, “doogers, pee-wees, tom-bowlers, crystals and bloods”  I was never very good and remember losing most of mine.

Historical Events

I cannot remember any significant events that affected us at school. When the USSR sent up the first “sputnik” we would stand out at night looking for it, but I cannot recall it being an event at school. We did not begin to play space traveller or change from our regular “cowboy & indians” or “armies”

Anzac day was taken quite seriously, I guess because most of us had parents and grandparents who had been through one or both wars.

 Thanks Reg!


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Book order form

We’ve just added a form for people who don’t wish to order online but don’t want to miss out on a Centenary book. A few people have emailed us with this request.

You can scan and email this back to  or you can post it back to the school.

Centenary book pre order form

Attn: Centenary Committee
60 McKimmie Road
Palmyra WA 6157

Or, you can fax to:  9339 8702

Ordering online is really easy though, you can do it here