A PRIZED PUPIL! by Leslie Scrase
Having become displaced from home as an evacuee in 1942, the idea of boarding
school is exciting to young Roger Wallace.
His head full of Tom Brown’s Schooldays and Stalky and Co., he soon discovers that boarding-school in the mid-20th century is not all
that different; with
bullying and beatings in abundance, especially the latter!
With the school being based in rural Devon it is not affected greatly by the
war, other than a lack of food. But for Roger, originally sent away from
Croydon because of the bombing and with family in the armed services, the
of war strikes him through the death of a brother which, in turn, becomes a milestone in his own coming of age.
Despite all this his school life is generally happy, with many good friends who
share and collude in his experiences. And he has his first intimate
relationship with Gladys, the girl who works in the kitchens.
Drawn from the author’s own experiences, this is a brilliantly evocative story of a young adolescent
– not just a tale of boarding-school life. We share in his laughter, his
stresses, his love, sex, and his tears of sorrow.
Although rising from the bottom of the pile, Roger Wallace remains a bit of a
rebel, and perhaps only he would describe himself as
‘A Prized Pupil!’
The author was born in Addiscombe, East Croydon. He was evacuated in 1939 and
again in 1940, which led to his attendance at Selhurst Grammar School followed
by Shebbear College in North Devon.
After his National Service in the Royal Navy he went to Richmond College, London
University. Trained as a Methodist Minister, he worked in many places around
Britain and also in South India, where he was Principal of an adult training
In 1977 Leslie Scrase created his own business in Surrey: Alpha Cars, a
chauffeur driven service mostly for businessmen and the stars. Leaving his
business in 1996, he now concentrates on his work as a Humanist Celebrant,
lecturer and author.
A Prized Pupil!continues the story of Roger Wallace which the author started in his book An Evacuee, and there is a third book titled A Reluctant Seaman. Whilst remaining works of fiction all three books are drawn closely from the author's own life
Twice married, he and Wendy share fifteen grandchildren. In their spare time they are to be found at their home