From the original blog

Doug said…

Thanks for posting this online for us all to read, Pop! Glad you’ve found your way into the “blogosphere”!
12 December 2006 at 07:18:00 GMT-8

Russ Brayley said…

Wow, dad, you’ve hit the blog highway with all wheels turning. Very good, Maurice.
12 December 2006 at 08:14:00 GMT-8

Raveesh said…

Sir, an Oakgrovian here.

I had read your account of OG life published in ‘The Oakgrovian’ (the school magazine), and had liked it very much. It so happened that all my school magazines were destroyed by termites in storage, and of all the valuable things lost, I missed your article the most. Praise the Lord, that when I entered your name, as a last hope, in the Google bar, this link came to me.

Thanks for throwing light on the old past for all the Oakgrovians.
9 July 2008 at 11:39:00 GMT-7

Raveesh said…

Could you encourage older surviving Oakgrovians to kindly tell us about their lives. I too have started writing down the account of my OG days in much details..Maybe, 50 years hence, it will find some takers.
9 July 2008 at 12:00:00 GMT-7

bobbie said…
I have just read most of your story and it was really great to find a reference to my mother Lorna Coelho nee Keess, she died when was a boy so I knoow nothing of her life. My wife and I have been searching for any information so it was amazing to read your story I look forward to reading it in detail later. Thank you Steve Coelho.
6 December 2008 at 14:08:00 GMT-8

the big chick said…

I came across your story while trying to find out more about my own family. My grandfather was principal of Oak Grove School until 1946 when he killed himself (HP Watts) Any stories you or other readers could tell me about him or my grandmother, mother(Kathleen) or aunt would be valued.

Your piece reflects some of the facets of life in India at that time and was very interesting in the detail.
4 March 2010 at 10:08:00 GMT-8

eve@corporategiftsboston said…

Maurice. So glad to see you posted this on a blogger. I have the hard copy that you e mailed me. Hope you are well, it has been too long…. Where are you now? Mum misses hearing from you guys… get in touch…….. Evelyn. Your 2nd or 3rd cousin….. daughter of Maureen Pepper (Brayley)
23 April 2012 at 08:17:00 GMT-7

Carolyn said…

I came across your account of times in and around Oak Grove, Jharipani. I was in Oak Grove circa 1960 – 1963 apprx and am searching for an article and possible pictures of Halfway House. It was absolutely marvelous reading about this serendipitous part of our world as I had spend the happiest years of my life here and wish to thank you so much for sharing your time there with us. Would you have any photos of Halfway House to share as well?
9 May 2012 at 03:48:00 GMT-7

Gamma Sue said…
Hello, this is Maurice Brayley, writer of the journal some of you have referred to.

Firstly, I would like to reply to the inquiry submitted by Big Chick.

It is not clear whether Chick is male or female but I will assume that such whimsicality is more typical of females so I will reply as if I were doing so with a female.Mr. HP Watts was a somewhat lonely figure, cut away from the ordinary run of school children during my time, 1932 to 1940. We did, however, regard him with an awe created by his secluding himself from us. His wife was believed to have been a former matron of the hospital on the estate. So little did we know about either of them that we did not know that he had children but if there were children, they too would have been cut off from the rest of us, so I’m sorry I cannot help with information about that aspect of the Watts family.Mr. Watts enjoyed a prestige that placed him above other principals and their families. He seemed to be a sorrowful figure, but that is is merely conjecture on my part.

I think the attitude Mr. Watts adopted, one of superiority amongst Indians and indeed those of us who were not British-born, was largely responsible for his alienation among Indians with whom he would have been in contact as a senior officer on the railway. It was a feature of the time that British-born officers in India were cut off and it was only a matter of time when Indian resentment would make life for people like Mr. Watts extremely uncomfortable, possibly, and lead to deep depression and frustration leading to their wanting to take their own lives.

I am sorry to have expressed myself in this way about your dear Grandfather, but it is at least partly the truth about the whole India-British situation in those times.

With regard to the request by Carolyn, I am sorry but I do not have any photographs of Halfway House. Photographs in those days were very uncommon and it is likely that there are no pictures of Jharipani which was merely a small plot of ground on which stood a bungalow which was a sort of halfway house.
7 June 2012 at 10:20:00 GMT-7

eve@corporategiftsboston said…

Maurice Do get in touch, would love to hear your news…….

Evelyn In Boston
7 June 2012 at 10:31:00 GMT-7

Muscle_Horse said…

Dear Mr. Brayley,

I hope you are doing well.

If you would like to be in touch with people in Wynberg- Allen School and St. George College, you could subscribe to them on Facebook. There are a good many active members from the earlier generations.

And when they recount their experiences I summarize that they have led more interesting lives than us.

Your blog transported me through time to understand the lives of people British and Indian both, in those days.

Warm regards and God bless.
16 August 2012 at 02:22:00 GMT-7

Muscle_Horse said…

Dear Mr.Brayley,

Do you by any chance have a Facebook account where we may subscribe to and take an interesting journey back in time?

Warm regards,
16 August 2012 at 03:04:00 GMT-7

Tricia Inglis said…

By any chance did you know Maurice McMurray who Married Patricia Barton Harvey, Patricia lived in Murree and also came to Perth in 1948 with her daughter Ann and son Peter. They were my grandparents.Regards Tricia Inglis
12 February 2014 at 01:46:00 GMT-8

Barry and Kathy Hughes said…

Mr Brayley, my name is Barry Hughes b. 1937 Calcutta India, and Phyllis is a cousin of ours. Her mother May Stromeyer was a sister of my gr grandfather Richard Henry Smith and a cousin to my grandmother Dearie or Zara as she was known. Please write back, as it would be most interesting to hear from you.
29 August 2014 at 09:07:00 GMT-7

Mark Probett said…

Namaste Mr Brayley. My father went to Oak Grove from about 1924 to 1934 – Ted Probett. His older brother Graham Probett passed away September last year at 98 years in Brisbane, Australia. Too, I have been intouch until passing away also, with James and Bonny Ross, old Oak Grovians both, who reached the fine old age of 97 and 98 years respectively. James Ross was there when Beryl Brewster fell to her death and it was her distraught boyfriend who helped the PE teacher ‘Horsey’ carry her back up to the roadside above. My dad Ted, also visited OG in 1984 and was welcomed with such kindness as you expressed. For me, I have travelled to India twice in the last 3 years in search of family history each trip with a different son. Simply wonderful for me. Kind thanks for your article – Mark Probett (New Zealand)
10 October 2015 at 01:42:00 GMT-7

Russ Brayley said…

My father, Maurice Brayley, passed away in the spring of 2016 at the age of 92. I have continued to record and write his story and I would be pleased to hear from anyone who knew my Dad or any of those individuals who he mentions in his writings.
12 February 2017 at 14:05:00 GMT-8

eve@corporategiftsboston said…

Russ once I saw your name come up in my e mail, I knew what was coming….. so sad and just talked to my Mum today in the UK. I cannot face telling her…… Your Dad was her favorite cousin…… would appreciate if we could communicate personally instead of on this blog…….
12 February 2017 at 14:22:00 GMT-8

This content has been reproduced from a blog posted by Maurice Brayley on November 27, 2006. The link to the original post has been removed in accordance with his family’s wishes.


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