Also in this section…?

Liverpool Art School

Ronald William Kirby was admitted 1| into the Junior School 2| of the Liverpool City School of Art at the tender age of 14, by its Principal, Henry Huggill, who recognised his excellent graphic skills.

Henry Huggill was the Art School’s Principal from 1930-51. In his book, 'Liverpool Seen, Post-war artists on Merseyside', Peter Davies notes that Huggill favoured hard work and discipline, but “did not preclude gaiety.”

Kirby was a successful student, and was regarded as an outstanding draughtsman. A selection of his examination results 4| survive in the Art School’s Archive.

The School of Art’s archive also contains a letter from Huggill, unaddressed, but indexed in Kirby’s name, and therefore probably correspondence to him. It appears to be an open reference to prospective employers written after Kirby had completed his main courses of study. The letter reads:

14 December 1948

Mr Ronald William Kirby of 58 Argo Road, Waterloo, Liverpool 22, completed a course of general art training in the Junior School in 1944 and then passed into the Senior School with a Lancashire County Art Exhibition [a type of financial scholarship] of the value of £45 per annum for 3 years.

In 1946 he passed the Ministry of Education Art and Crafts examination and in 1948 was awarded the National Diploma in Design with painting as his special subject.

Mr Kirby is a most conscientious and accurate draughtsman, has a fine sense of pictorial composition and is able to carry a job through with a very high degree of technical accomplishment and artistry.

He has had little or no industrial experience as yet but I am quite sure that he will quickly adjust himself to industrial conditions and when he has done so, he will be a very valuable worker.

Principal 5|

Footnotes

  1. Admission Register No. 7 [page 397]
    Liverpool City School of Art
    Liverpool John Moores University, Aldham Robarts Learning Resource Centre (Special Collections Archive)

    The entry reads:
    Ronald William Kirby
    58 Argo Street, Waterloo
    Date of Birth 27/11/28
    Admission No. 13176
    Date of admission 7-1-43 3
    Previous education: elementary
     
  2. 'The Junior School provides a training in drawing, design, crafts and general education, for young students desirous of preparing for admission into art occupations.’
    ‘There is an Entrance Examination for intending students, the subjects being Elementary Object Drawing, Plant Drawing or Design and a simple paper in English and Arithmetic.’
    Source: Liverpool John Moores University, Aldham Robarts Learning Resource Centre (Special Collections Archive)
     
  3. Date of admission 7-1-43. The academic year he entered was 1942-43, but probably owing to disruption caused by World War 2, Kirby started in 1943, at the beginning of the calendar, rather than the academic, year.

    Prior to Kirby's admission in 1943, the last available archived prospectus for the Liverpool City School of Arts and Crafts is 1939-1940. Term times are (Autumn) 18 Sept-22 Dec; (Spring) 8 Jan-21 Mar; (Summer) 8 April-5 Jul.

    Source: Liverpool City School of Art and Crafts, Prospectus & Time Tables 1939-1940, Liverpool John Moores University, Aldham Robarts Learning Resource Centre (Special Collections Archive).
     
  4. Examination results Source book:
    EXAM RESULTS, L & C NSAM Oxford Delegacy, CS of A Liverpool
    UNION OF LANCASHIRE & CHESHIRE INSTITUTES

    Exams 1943 Junior Industrial Art Course (Part I) at Liverpool City School of Art
    Ronald William Kirby: English 79, Drawing, Design & Colour 70, Typography 60, Course result: 2

    Exams 1944 Junior Industrial Art Course (Part II)
    Ronald Kirby: English 87, Drawing, design & colour 95, Book Illustration 87, Calculations 69, Course result: 1, 2nd

    In the Part II course results, Kirby was top in Drawing, design and colour (out of 12 students). In Book Illustration he was top out of 7 students.

    Source book: 'M OF E examination book'
    1946 - 'word and fine black lettering': Pass
    1948 - N.D. List A;[No.]1724 'painting & (1 canvas & 1 imp sht - Pass. Supplementary test wrk)

    Source: Liverpool City School of Art Archive, Liverpool John Moores University, Aldham Robarts Learning Resource Centre (Special Collections Archive).
     
  5. Source:
    Liverpool John Moores University, Aldham Robarts Learning Resource Centre (Special Collections Archive):
    Liverpool City School of Art
    Correspondence file: 6th December 1948 – 12 May 1949