Glenwood High School is in Durban, South Africa. It
was founded in 1910 and had just twenty-four pupils
to begin with.
In 1914, there were still only about 120 boys at the
school. At the end of the First World War, no fewer
than twenty-five ex-pupils had lost their lives fighting
for their nation, as part of the Commonwealth forces.
This represented a tragic and very noticeable loss in
a small community of young men.
In the Second World War, a further 120 names were added
to the Roll of Honour commemorating the dead. The school,
by then had about 490 pupils. In December 1945, this
eulogy was added to the Roll of Honour.
‘The war has come very close to this school, as
indeed, it has come to almost every part
of the world. The tragedy is apparent to
us when we look at the long list of those
Old Boys of Glenwood who gave their lives
for the cause which finally triumphed after
6 dark years. When we think of those names
in terms of the people they represent, that
each name means a gap in the life of a home,
the loss of a father or a son – it
is then we realize that the tragedy of war
is not represented by a picture of a bomb-shattered
building. A home to which a son or husband
has not returned from battle is a true picture
of war’s tragedy. If the full significance
of the sacrifices in human life were to
impress itself upon all men and women, and
especially upon the leaders of the nations,
perhaps we could look forward to a world
There is a very real link
between this school and every name on the
Roll of Honour. All of them were boys here.
They played cricket and rugby, swotted for
examinations and cheered at swimming galas.
We honour the memory of
all these gallant men.'
The Fate of the 1st Fifteen
The photograph below shows the Glenwood High 1st XV
rugby team for 1935. At least 15 of the boys here are
known to have volunteered for service, over a third
of whom died in the Second World War.
Rollover each player to learn more about his story.
(If only the name appears, this player was lucky enough
to survive active service).
To view the above exercise you will need
to use Macromedia Flash.
You can download this free by clicking on the button
Produce a graph
for the First World War, using the step-by-step
guide if necessary, to show
a) the actual ages of those who died and
b) the average age. Do exactly the same
for the Second World War. Compare the two
graphs and consider these questions:
In the First World War Roll of Honour
Harold Blanksby was a teacher at the school.
What happens to the average age of those
who died if you take out his age?
What do you notice about the average
ages for the two wars? Can you explain
Produce a graph showing in which services
the men enlisted in the First World War.
Show only Army, Navy and Air Force –
don’t try to plot each battalion.
Repeat the process for the Second World
War. Compare the two graphs and consider
What do the statistics show you about
the changing nature of warfare in the
First and Second World Wars?
Why are there so many more men serving
in the Air Force in the Second World War?
From Glenwood High School 457 Old Boys
served in the Second World War. Of these,
109 (24%) were in the SAAF or RAF.
On the Roll of Honour there are 120 names
of those who died and 56 of these (47%)
served in the SAAF or RAF. What does this