Hubert Shrubb takes charge
When Hubert Shrubb has to leave his expensive prep school to go to the local village school, he feels that his world has collapsed. His new headteacher, Mr Cogsworthy, seems to be as mad as a box of frogs and the kids take delight in mocking Hubert’s posh ways. More
‘Poor?’ said Hubert Shrubb. ‘Do you mean to say sir, that my family is broke?’ Mr Denton, the headmaster of Heatherdown School, fidgeted in his seat. ‘Now look here, Shrubb,’ he said. ‘I know it’s hard, but we must take these disappointments on the chin.’ He got up from his chair and looked out of the window at the rose garden down below. He frowned at the scene that met his eyes and rapped sharply on the window pane. ‘Pontefract!’ he bellowed. ‘Untie the gardener this instant. Report to my study at Break. Intolerable behaviour!’ He turned his attention back to Hubert who was blinking at him from behind his glasses. ‘You see,’ he said, ‘as I have been trying to tell you, I’m afraid your parents can no longer afford to send you here. You are to leave today.’ Hubert’s mouth dropped open as he stared at the headmaster. ‘B … but I don’t understand,’
he stammered. ‘Am I to be sent to another prep school?’ ‘Er no, no,’ said Mr Denton. He picked up a small silver bell on his desk and rang it loudly. ‘I’m sure your mother will explain it all to you.’ Just then the study door opened and Boggins, the school porter, shuffled in. ‘Ah, there you are, Boggins,’ smiled Mr Denton. ‘Would you be kind enough to get Shrubb’s trunk for him and take it to his dormitory? He must pack immediately as he is being collected from school at eleven thirty this morning.’ Boggins nodded, glared at Hubert and shuffled off again, muttering under his breath. ‘Well, time to say goodbye, Shrubb,’ said Mr Denton. ‘I’m sure I can speak on behalf of everyone here at Heatherdown that we wish you all the best for the future. And always remember the school motto.’ ‘Yes, sir,’ said Hubert. He thought for a moment. ‘Er, what is the school motto exactly?’ Mr Denton rubbed his chin thoughtfully.
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