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Aberdare Boys’ Grammar School

Memories and Memorabilia


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Three Oxford University Offers, January 1971

from School Archives

For most of the School’s existence, its university entrants went mainly to the colleges of the University of Wales, with a minority heading off to a variety of universities throughout the UK. Although students had been going to Oxford or Cambridge, not many had done so. The first entrant was May Williams who went to Girton in 1906, graduating three years later in the Medieval and Modern Languages Tripos. However, exceptionally in the spring of 1971 the School received three provisional Oxford offers, and The Aberdare Leader reported the successes as follows.

Three students doing their ‘A’-levels at Aberdare Boys Grammar School have won provisional places at Oxford University Colleges.

The boys, friends in the sixth form, will take their places there next October, providing they suitably pass their ‘A’-level exams in July.

JEFFREY PRICE, 17-year-old son of Mr. and Mrs. J.J. Price, Lle Hyfryd, Llwydcoed, is presently studying French, Latin and English, with a view to reading law at New College.

Chairman of the local branch of the Young Conservatives and secretary of the Grammar School Debating Society, Jeffrey wants to use his law training as a basis for a career in politics.


Aside from reading — he was school librarian for a year — his other great interest is music. His instrument is the violin and he has played on several occasions with the East Glamorgan Youth Orchestra.

Jeffrey’s brother, Robert, is studying at Swansea College of Education. He hopes to leave as a Bachelor of Education.

If Bryan Owen gets his degree in modern history at Balliol, he thinks he will probably use it for a career in either law or the Civil Service.

Son of Mr. and Mrs. T.P. Owen, Bro Deg, Cwmbach, Bryan, aged 17, is one of five children. His elder sister, Hilary, is a student at Cardiff Teacher Training College.

Bryan is studying Latin, History and English. At school, he’s secretary of the Classics Society, Classics being his main interest.

He also takes a great interest in church activities in Cwmbach and is a member of both the choir and the youth club at St. Mary Magdalene’s.

Since the age of 14, Martin Ellery, now 17, has wanted to become a priest. The degree he hopes to take in theology at Jesus College will help to that end, though he will have to study at Theological College afterwards.


Martin, son of Mr. and Mrs. W.H. Ellery, Seymour Street, Aberdare, is a member of the Llandaff Diocesan Ordination Guild and he hopes to come back to the diocese after his ordination.

A member of the Phoenix Theatre Players, Martin has appeared in two of their recent productions, “The Merrie Wives of Windsor” and “Murder in the Cathedral.” The headmaster of the grammar school, Mr. Gwilym Williams, was very pleased with the boys’ successes. There have only been five past students in the last 30 years who have gone to Oxford, he said. “The boys have worked hard and they certainly deserve their places at Oxford,” he told us. His hope is that this would be the start of a new era and that there would be many more boys of the school who will find their way to Oxford.

The original Leader cutting is shown below

Leader January 1971