The year 2018 would have been the 100th birthday of Peter White, the late husband of Mrs Claire White – daughter of the founder of Fyling Hall School, Mab Bradley. To commemorate his 100th birthday, Fyling Hall School would like to offer two ‘Citizens of the future’ scholarships for pupils who will be starting Year 7 in September 2018 in Peter White’s memory.

Born in Whitby, Peter was hugely supportive of the school where he was an early pupil. What started as a very small all boys’ prep school, Peter was educated there until he was 13 where he thrived and was awarded an Exhibition to Denstone College where he captained Rugby and Cricket. Peter later went on to read law, but his plans to join his father at Buchanan and White were interrupted by the outbreak of war. Peter joined the Green Howards and was sent to France with the British Expeditionary Force, where he was part of the rear-guard action that fought its way back to Dunkirk. Evacuated on the last ship, he always said the experience taught him “never to waste another day as long as I live”.

Commissioned with the West Yorkshire Regiment, he served in North Africa with Montgomery’s victorious First Army in the Desert War against Rommel. Then sent with his regiment to engage the Germans in Italy, he was reported missing in the invasion at Salerno in September 1943. His parents believed him killed in action, but in November, a Mr Burgess of Whitby Fire Station picked up the following message on a German broadcast: “Fit and well. Please send final syllabus law books. Love Peter.” He spent the rest of the war as a prisoner of war in Oflag VII, but managed to pass his final law exams under the invigilation of his Colonel; as Peter said, “there was nothing else to do!”

Demobbed in 1946, he resumed his career with his father, working hard but finding time to Captain Whitby Cricket, sail, shoot, fish, be Clerk to the Court, Seneschal to the Lord of the Manor and valued lawyer of his first school, Fyling Hall.

The school is now not quite as small as when Peter attended, but still retains the qualities he valued: the unique family atmosphere promoting happiness and well-being in an educational environment, and the determination to overcome all the difficulties that life sends and to value every day. He would be honoured to think two young people would have this opportunity in his name.

The application process will involve spending 2 taster days at Fyling Hall on Monday 4th and Tuesday 5th December. Candidates will spend time with pupils currently in year 7 attending academic lessons and games. They will meet the Headmaster and undertake a short, written assessment.

If you are interested, please contact the school office by Tuesday 28th November either by telephone 01947 880353 or email and ask for Helen or Jane.

Peter White

The entire Cricket team c.1926! Peter White is front row, second from the right.