[Newspaper cutting, source unknown, 19th - early 20th C.]
TO THE EDITOR. Sir,—At a meeting of the Vestry of this parish on October 5th, a remark was made by one of the Vestry, and echoed by our friend the Jackdaw in your last week's impression, which I think is calculated to mislead many of your readers with regard to the management of the above school. He there stated "that there is practically only one trustee, for no one knows where the others are, as they may be at Halifax. New York, or anywhere else." This is incorrect; the present trustees are —Messrs. Alfred Bevington, Charles Fauntleroy, John Cox, Edward M'Murdo, and Thomas Maskew. The first three gentlemen have for years been at almost every meeting for the transaction of business, unless through illness unable to attend. The following is an extract from the minutes relating to the election of trustees of the Free School, Bermondsey, bearing date 17th September, 1804:— "Whenever the trustees are reduced to four, it is the duty of the minister, churchwardens, and overseers, to nominate proper persons (being vestrymen) to fill up the number to six or eight, and it will be for the convenience of the Governors if they are nominated out of their body." I may here remark that a new trust deed would entail an expense which should, if possible, be avoided. Besides these trustees, who we may call the Tory element in the direction of the school, the churchwardens, sidesmen, and overseers for the time being are, by right of office, governors, consequently every year fresh blood is infused into the government of the school, and, indeed, they being in the proportion of eight to the five trustees, the majority must always rest with those annually chosen, independent of which the churchwarden is chairman of the Governors, and, therefore, entitled to a double vote. The practical working of the school is, I think, best shown by the results of the education, one of our late churchwardens being brought up in the school. Several scholars now hold good appointments under the parish; a late scholar is now a partner in one of the largest firms in the City; others are receiving as much as £1,000 a year and very many are holding responsible situations in South London. These have all been pupils of the present respected master since he has for the last thirty-eight years occupied the post.
I remain, Sir, yours faithfully, TRUTH.