A new broom sweeps clean they say but bursar Stephen White isn’t planning to brush away the lockers he’s inherited at Ibstock Place School, Roehampton, any time soon.
“The quality and condition of the lockers was one of things I first noticed when I came here,” recalls Stephen, who moved into post at the independent co-educational day school for 4-18-year-olds in December 2016.
Founded in 1894, Ibstock Place ranks highly among education assessors. The Independent Schools Inspectorate rated each of the eight areas of school life it scrutinised, music among them, as `Excellent`.
“Schools I’ve been to before usually had steel lockers, so I was surprised when I saw that ours were wood,” he continues. “They have to be hardwearing, and wood can get chipped and damaged, but ours are in great condition – light and airy and good quality.”
Mainly located in the school’s Priory Wing, which was built in 2005, the single tier units, at 1.8m high, are lofty and large enough to fit the wealth of books and belongings students store in them – including musical instruments, given the school’s prowess in that department.
Pupils are due praise too for the lockers’ condition. “They have obviously looked after them – I think you tend to take care of things more when they are of high quality,” Stephen notes. Bespoke furniture manufacturers and installers Crown Sports Lockers have made and fitted Ibstock Place School’s retinue of lockers in several stages as needs arose – in two main stages then as further space became available.
Stephen has returned to education after a spell in the city as director of finance for a livery company. “I like the breadth of challenge,” reports the former Royal Naval logistics officer. “Every day is different.”
Among his many areas of responsibility, replacing lockers is definitely off his `to do` list, it seems.