Jo Powicke

Introduction by Doug Murgatroyd

Having only just got a handle on how to access the Old Cicestrians Website and learnt only recently how to “upload” information onto it, I thought that an appropriate area of interest would be Teacher Memories. To this end I have begun the process of collating articles we have previously published in past newsletters and, hopefully, will add others that you the readers might contribute. To this end if you email me at with your own memories I would easily be able to paste them directly into this section of our website. Also do let me have your ideas on other areas of interest.


John Powicke:  (1948-78)  

Although he was born in Dorset John Powicke grew up in Cheshire and Derbyshire.

His father was a Congregational Minister and his uncle was Sir Maurice Powicke author of Volume 4 (The Thirteenth Century 1216-1307) in the well-known Oxford History of England series.  John attended Hyde County Secondary School and later Manchester Grammar School before going to Manchester University to read Economics (1937-40). 

 During the Second World War he served (1940-46) with the Royal Signals in Iraq, Sicily and Italy.   After the war he attended (1947-48) a teacher-training course in the Education Department at Manchester University before obtaining a permanent post at the School in September 1948. 

He was responsible for the teaching of Economics at GCE ‘O’ and ‘A’ levels and was involved in writing a number of books on the subject.  Outside of the classroom he established and ran the Debating Society (this became the Cobden Society in 1964) for many years.  Activities included debates, talks, Mock Elections and Model Parliaments.  In the late 1960s he was responsible for setting up the Industrial Archaeology Society at the school.

 With his wife and son he lived in Chichester until 1965 when they moved to Midhurst.  On the death of his wife in 1978 he retired, but continued to teach in a part-time capacity at St. Michael’s School for girls in Petworth.In the late 1980s he moved to Sheerness on the Isle of Sheppey to be nearer to his son who is a geography teacher.   He died in about 2002.