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Gryphon Gallery: Crampton Chalk Cup

Although Sports Day had been going for some years during the early 1920s, there were no individual or team trophies awarded. Teams may have been chosen arbitrarily because no houses existed until 1933 after the gymnasium was built at the Pemberton Woods campus. 

The earliest individual trophy was the Tennis Challenge Cup, presented by A.L. Crampton Chalk in 1928. Quite possibly Julia McDermott (by that time Mrs. Forbes) may have had a hand in this, given her own keen interest and successes in provincial tennis championships during the mid-1910s. 

Not suggesting that there might have been a ‘hidden agenda’ behind Mr. Crampton Chalk’s kind donation, but his own daughter, D. Crampton Chalk, has her name on the trophy as the winner of the first two times it was contested.

From the inscriptions on the cup, it appears that 1949 was the last time it was awarded, but without a doubt, the tennis championship continued. There may have been some years when the contest was not played but certainly, the yearbooks show from 1961, regular competition until 1983, when Judith Horwood was the last Senior Champion.

Three photos of the old PW tennis courts are to the right. The top right is 1932. In the foreground, you can see a net post and a flat area. Remember that the NHS campus was only completed in April 1932, so this court was maybe the first external addition. Below is the circa 1934 tennis team. Terrace Todd front centre, was the 1934 champion. Next is the 1935 senior championship, Peggy Garrard was the winner. Mrs. Cheetham, responsible for drama and games, is far right.