Here at last are the missing chapters of the memoirs of John Crossley Hayes, which were written in the months before his death in August 2003. They start with his childhood and musical education in Manchester in the early years of the last century, and pick up again after his “Sojourn in Guernsey” during the war.
They tell the story of his rich and varied life as an educator in Cyprus, Uganda and Nigeria between the 1940s and the 1960s, and his coming home to teach in an English comprehensive school until his retirement in 1975. Quite a change! His insightful comments will be of interest to anyone concerned with education. And of course he also presents a highly readable picture of life in those countries during those years….
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John Crossley Hayes was a gifted musician and composer of light classical music who wrote his best work under German Occupation in Guernsey during 1942, notably his Suite Guernesiaise and Aubade and Serenade.After his death in 2003 they were discovered in beautifully handwritten manuscript, and are now ready for orchestras to play.
Also found were several writings, including his memoirs, of which A Sojourn in Guernsey forms the first part. As a teacher he was passionate about education and was a versatile individual who had a rare originality of mind. A science graduate, he was very well read in arts subjects such as history and loved learning languages, some of which he spoke fluently, some just dabbled in. He learned Hungarian, French, German, Russian, Swahili, Greek, Turkish and Arabic to name but a few. He spent long curfew evenings during the war teaching himself Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics.
His opinions were always worth listening to, especially as he got older. For this reason his writings are published here in the expectation that people from all walks of life will find something to interest them.