The only explanation I can possibly think of is that it has rained a lot, heck of a lot, enough to re-float Noah’s Ark, since I was last in Mirfield. How else could my old school have shrunk to much? How come the playground I used to take minutes to skip around singing ‘The Big Ship Sails Through The Alley Alley O‘ is now the size of a postage stamp? And the classroom where 30 of us sat at giant desks scribbling on our jotters? It’s a squeeze for six grown ups. I know that because today I was one of the half dozen in Miss Lobel’s classroom.
I haven’t returned there since I left a l-o-n-g l-o-n-g time ago. Since then, I’ve grown – and it has shrunk. The school closed and became an arts centre and is now the West Yorkshire Print Workshop. The classrooms have become studios and what was the headmistress’ office is now a toilet.
When I was looking for a Christmas present for Noel, I remembered he’d said he always wanted to try his hand at silk screen printing. Where better to go than my old school so I could have a little self-indulgent trip down memory lane – and learn a new skill too? Just like being back at school – except it’s smaller.