Ireland: Prep School Uniforms, Late 1960s-Early 1970s

I was at a preparatory school in Belfast during the late 1960s to early 70s and I remember an upsetting time for me. I am the older brother in a family of four. My brother who is 2 years younger than me was allowed to wear long trousers as part of the school uniform because of his hieght. He is adopted and he is now 6ft 6in tall. I was a small boy and was only 5ft 4in at 16. The prep school we were both at had this rule that if a boy was over a certain hieght he was allowed to wear long trousers no matter what his age was. My brother reached the height at age 9 years old. Lukily my parents didin't go with this rule. I was very upset at the time and scince all my mates were going into long trousers before it was all the more humiliating to think that my younger brother of 2 years would be in longs before me.

As it turned out, a year or so later we moved to dublin and he went to a school were the uniform was very scrict and all boys had to wear shorts till leaving the school at 13. I went to a different school which was very liberal and short trousers were not part of the uniform. Ido however remember that as a disapline measure the head master writing a letter to parents suggesting that first year boys would wear shorts as part of a new uniform this never happened as parents didin't feel this solve the disapline problems.

I find the HBC site fascinating. It brings back so many memories. I never thought about clothes until the school in Belfast made it an issue.

Christopher Wagner

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Created: July 1, 2002
Last updated: July 1, 2002