An Original Killertonion
I was one of the original "Killertonians" taking residence in 1963 and leaving in 1965.
As a St. Luke's student I spent my first year in local digs and was then given the opportunity to move to the country for the next two years. I originally came from Harringay in North London and moving to Exeter was an amazing experience, moving to Killerton was even better. It was an experience that I have never forgotten , the sense of space and the fact that the grounds were open to us at all times. Member of the public did enter the grounds at weekends and could never understand what we were doing in areas off limits to them. I still boast of the fact that I lived in a country mansion at one time.
One of the aspects of Sir Richard's life that the programme ignored was his work at the college where he was an inspiring tutor never allowing his political views to be known and encouraging us to think for ourselves. His lecture on the history of education was both instructive and amusing and one that always filled the lecture hall.
My main memories of Sir Richard and Lady Anne are as the warden of Killerton. He was always around and kept a careful eye on what was happening but never interfered, I can still remember his horror at seeing the damage done to the oak floor after the first dance held there ,we forgot that a slight young lady still puts tons per square inch through stiletto heals and after that plastic heal caps were in order to protect the floor and we still continued with the dances.
The programme did help me to recall his attitude to the art work on the walls. There was one painting of a young lady we admired and were told it was an incredibly valuable Gainsborough with a unique use of colour. We asked if it was insured and were all rather surprised to be told no if anyone wants to steal it they are welcome, or words to that effect.
He also explained that all the furniture put into store in Exeter during WW2 got destroyed in the Exeter bombing.
In our third year we were invited on a Sunday evening to join them both for a glass of sherry in their flat and shown some of the treasures in the library.
At the end of the third year Sir Richard and Lady Ann hosted a farewell dinner for us something we never expected.
I was also taken by Lady Ann and others to see a badgers set in the grounds, never having seen badgers before I was overawed to watch them come out even if only for a few moments.
My memories of Killerton may be fading with time but I still look back at those two years with great fondness , both Sir Richard and Lady Ann were kind to us and we were welcome as a sort fo family, 60 young men who enjoyed the time spent there. We also had a great excuse for getting to lectures at 09.00 late, on the back road to Exeter we might meet cows on the way to the milking parlour.
Sadly a house move led to a collection of slides being lost and they included any taken at Killerton I have added a photo of me age 76 taken in 2017 on our Golden Wedding visit to Exeter
St. Luke's College 1962 - 1965
Killerton House 1963 - 1965