The doors of Hanson Girls’ Grammar School, one day were opened wide, To allow a group, a very smart group of girls to troop inside, It was September ’57 and in uniforms so new, A symphony of colour, cherry red and navy blue.

These are the first four lines of a poem penned by Beryl Thompson, who remembers her first day at upper school as if it were yesterday.

First with Mrs Robinson in classroom number one, All seated alphabetically, our learning had begun, writes Beryl, 64, who then went by the name of Shaw.

We played hockey on muddy Myra Shay, a pit heap once we hear, But we carried on regardless, ‘Play the game’, you’d hear us cheer!

Beryl attended the now Hanson School from 1957 to 1962, the same period as 63-year-old Bradfordian Susan Barker, nee Lawrence, who also has vivid memories of her time there.

“I remember always being in trouble – not having the appropriate shoes or socks. I was always on report for something,” she says.

The women are among a large number of former pupils at the school looking forward to the 100th anniversary reunion of Hanson Old Students’ Association, which takes place in Bradford next month.

Former students of all ages will be travelling from across the UK to celebrate their schooldays.

“We have two women who started in 1930 and a man who started in 1935 attending, right through to present-day staff and students,” says Beryl. Tony Hill is travelling from his home in Rutland to meet classmates from 1958 to 1964.

“It only seems like yesterday that, as an 11-year-old, I walked through the gate,” he says.

“The building itself, a pretty daunting Victorian black-stones feature with Colditz-style architecture. It was a period when corporal punishment was meted out as standard.”

Tony, 62, attended Hanson Boys’ Grammar School, located next door to the girls’ grammar on its former site in Barkerend Road.

His five years at the school taught him, he says, to recognise opportunities and seize them. “No better start to the world of work,” he adds.

And he did recognise opportunities: after working for a time at the Telegraph & Argus, he headed to the North-East, where he also worked in newspapers, and later across the Atlantic where he became vice-president of Thomson Newspapers. He picked up an OBE along the way.

Now retired, he regularly attends Hanson reunions. “To this day I am still blessed with a number of special friends who, like me, were proud to wear the Hanson Boys’ Grammar School colours.”

Former pupil Paul Horvath, 49, of Bradford, pays tribute to teachers Mike Lambert and Kelvin Hibbert, who encouraged him. But his memories of one mathematics teacher are not so fond.

“If he caught you walking across the grass, he would make you do ten press-ups – if you got your uniform muddy, it didn’t matter,” he recalls.

Bank branch manager Jonathan Wales, 42, of Mirfield, was a pupil from 1980 to 1985. “I’d come from a small middle school and found Hanson big, quite dirty and neglected,” he says, adding that he feels he was not afforded the best opportunities to thrive academically. “I can’t say a lot that’s positive.”

But he adds that certain teachers – Mike Lambert, Jim Sidney, Neil Donkin and Tony Thompson – did, however, inspire him. “Some of them could throw a board rubber with extreme accuracy,” he laughs.

The Old Students’ Association wrote to the Queen to inform her about the reunion, and were thrilled to receive a letter written on her behalf, giving her congratulations. Scott Kirby left the school in 2006, after six happy years. “The school had a ‘family’ feel,” he says. “A select few teachers even taught my dad some 30 years beforehand.”

The former pupils are hoping for a good turnout and an evening of reminiscence, as Beryl’s poem concludes: My days at Hanson long over now, but still I say with truth, I’d gladly do it all over again, could I relive my early youth.

l Hanson Old Students’ Association 100th reunion is being held on Friday, November 20 at 7pm at the Dubrovnik Hotel in Oak Avenue, Bradford. Tickets for the event, which includes a meal, cost £23. For more details, contact Beryl Thompson on (0113) 258 6172, e-mail uk or visit hansonoldstudents. org.