Book back home 100 years late

Head of school Mark Simpson with the KEVI book lent by Albert Chambers 100 years ago.
Head of school Mark Simpson with the KEVI book lent by Albert Chambers 100 years ago.

Staff at King Edward VI School in Morpeth were in for a big surprise when a library book was recently returned.

They were stunned when they saw that ‘Palgraves Golden Treasury with Additional Poems’ had been borrowed from what was then Morpeth Grammar School by Albert Chambers on October 20, 1914.

The item was found by his grandson Ian Blenkinsopp, who lives in Cumbria. He sent the book and a note of apology to Mark Simpson, head of school at KEVI.

Mr Simpson said: “We were amazed to receive this book 100 years on and it was still in a good condition.

“Mr Blenkinsopp made a light-hearted comment in his note that he hoped we wouldn’t levy any accrued fines. We were happy to waive them on this occasion and it was good to get some information about Albert’s life.”

Albert was born in 1900 at Hirst Ashington, where his father was headteacher of Hirst School. At Morpeth Grammar School, he was a member of its army cadet force during the First World War.

After leaving school, he joined the Merchant Navy. He developed TB in the late 1920s and spent about a year in a sanatorium in Mexico, but he recovered and got married in 1929 in Blyth.

Albert and his wife had two children and he went on to become a draughtsman at Robert Hawthorns in Newcastle and then at Wallsend Slipway.

He died in 1965 at Monkseaton.