The School Orchestra

generously donated by Suzanne Choppen & Hilary Fuller

According to Donald Woodhead's account of the school history, the Ardwick Central School Orchestra was founded during the period when Mr. Mercer was headmaster, from 1922 to 1933. He says this of the orchestra:

"The school orchestra, firmly established during Mr. Mercer's years, matured under the continued leadership of Miss Turner. A jumble sale was held in July 1932, to raise money for "the orchestra and School Funds". In turn, the orchestra gave a concert for charitable causes in February 1933. At least one evening concert was given in school each year, and the H.M.l's report of 1937 said, "Mention must be made of the school orchestra, an out-of-school activity, in which, as the years have passed, an increasing number of old pupils have joined. The orchestra meets regularly for practice and has given upwards of 100 concerts in aid of various charities. Its value as a civilising and cultural influence is very great and it is a legitimate source of pride to the teacher in particular and to the school past and present in general". Some of the players were also members of the Manchester Schools' orchestra, and successive M.E.C. Music Advisers were frequent visitors, ready to help wherever possible in ensuring a continuance of lessons for these players."

Jenny Turner retired in 1949. Woodhead said of her:

"This retirement of Miss Turner concluded a remarkable record in the annals of the school - 42 years a member of staff, and before that a scholar and pupil teacher. She had given magnificent service to generations of children in Ardwick; and at her presentation assembly, she responded with a simple but moving speech on 'Duty and Kindness'."