I joined CVTHS in September 1960 in form 1P with John Kingsland as Head and Reg Mayo as Deputy. I progressed through the school and can remember singing in the choir in the early years and taking the part of a policeman in Pirates of Penzance. Later I moved backstage to lighting and scenery and did quite a bit for a production of Hamlet including making the coffin.
I obtained nine O-levels and then went on to the 6th form when I helped to run the tuck shop and left in July 1967 as a vice-captain. I did the Christmas post with the GPO in the last two years whilst in the 6th form.
After leaving CVTHS, I worked for the local authority as a bin man before joining the Royal Navy as a cadet at Dartmouth. My navy career ended with my retirement in 1985 and then I joined HM Coastguard in the operations room at Lee on the Solent, leaving after 15 years. From there I went to work for the port of Southampton in the marine department mostly ‘driving’ launches including the harbourmaster's and pilot boats.
I retired for the final time at the end of August 2014 and now have a part-time job as a tour manager for a rail tour company taking parties on rail tours both in UK and Europe. I still hold a valid HGV and PSV licence which are used to do a little driving for local companies every now and again and I am a member and local committee member of the Institute of Transport Administration.
Mike Schmidt - 17 Dandelion Close - Gosport - Hampshire - PO13 0PN - 01329 310365