John Griffiths (c.1868-1939)

John Griffiths was the headmaster of the Knowl Bank Board School, Golcar.


He was born in Llansteffan, Carmarthenshire, Wales, the son of carpenter David Griffiths and his wife Mary.

He married Selina Willoughby, daughter of engineer William Willoughby, on 17 September 1889 at the Parish Church in Batley, West Yorkshire. The couple had one daughter:

  • Mabel Gwendoline Griffiths (1893-1990)[1]

By 1891, he was living at Knowl Bank, Golcar, where he was recorded in the census as the headteacher of the Elementary School.

In the summer of 1894, he was presented with a davenport writing desk, which bore the inscription "Presented to Mr. John Griffiths by the trustees and managers of the Golcar Town School, as an expression of esteem. June 30th, 1894."[2]

In 1922, he took the Knowl Bank Council School choir to compete at the Welsh National Eisteddfod at Ammanford, where they "caused something of a sensation throughout England and Wales" by winning first prize:[3]

Their singing on that occasion was highly spoken of by the adjudicators and critics, and the success was honoured locally by presentations to the children and conductor, Mr. John Griffiths, who is headmaster at the school.

The school choir, which numbered 47 members, competed again at the 1925 Eisteddfod held at Pwllheli, where they came third.[4] The choir which competed the following year at Swansea included four members of the winning 1922 choir, and they also gave a performance in Griffiths' home town of Llansteffan.[5] The choir came first in the Children's Mixed Choir Class out of the 27 entrants, where they performed "By Dimpled Brook" (T.F. Dunhill) and "Spring Song" (T. Hopkin Evans).[6] On returning to Golcar, the choir members were presented with a gold medal.[7]

John Griffiths of 62 Armitage Road, Milnsbridge, died aged 71 on 4 May 1939 and was buried on 8 May at Christ Church, Linthwaite.


Notes and References

  1. Born 25 November 1893, she married Lawrence Tattersfield Sykes in 1918.
  2. Huddersfield Chronicle (07/Dec/1894).
  3. Yorkshire Evening Post (05/Aug/1922) and Leeds Mercury (21/Jan/1925).
  4. Leeds Mercury (18/Apr/1925).
  5. Leeds Mercury (31/Jul/1926).
  6. Yorkshire Evening Post (04/Aug/1926) and Leeds Mercury (05/Aug/1926).
  7. Leeds Mercury (27/Oct/1926).

John Griffiths (c.1868-1939)


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This page was last modified on 3 May 2017 and has been edited by Dave Pattern.

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