Norcross, Lawrence John Charles

First name/s: Lawrence John Charles
Last name: Norcross
Known names / nicknames: Lawrie
Date of birth: 14/04/1927
Year of birth: 1927

Life before Ruskin

Date and place of birth: 14 April 1927, Peterborough

Family: Father an Electrician, ‘who died young in a motorcycle crash’ (Daily Telegraph).

Work: Royal Navy (1940-1949), Print.

Politics/Trade union activity: Communist Party (in print industry).

Trade Union membership (at time of entry to Ruskin)

Life at Ruskin

Dates at Ruskin: 1952-1954

Source of funding: not known

Campaigns/political activity: Communist Party

Subjects studied at Ruskin: English.


Qualification: not known

Life after Ruskin

Education: Leeds University, BA English (graduated 1957)

Work: Secondary School Teaching, London (including Battersea County School). Headteacher Highbury Grove School 1974-1987

Politics/trade union activity: Labour Party, Conservative Party. Right-wing activism through involvement in Centre for Policy Studies, and Hillgate Group, as author of (e.g.) The ILEA: a Case for Reform (1981). Member of the National Council for Educational Standards, a campaigning group of the educational right.

Family: Married Margaret Wallace (1959). Three sons, one daughter

Place & date of death: “My father died on the 31st of January 2010, in Steyning, West Sussex, where he was living following the death of his wife the previous July.” (Joanna Norcross)

Date of death:
Year of death: 2010

Achievements / Publications

The ILEA: a Case for Reform (1981). Centre for Policy Studies

The ILEA after the Abolition of the GLC (1983). Centre for Policy Studies

Whose Schools, a Radical Manifesto (1985). (with Caroline Cox and others). The Hillgate Group.

Material in archives or already published articles

Obituaries : TES Newspaper on 26 February, 2010 by Adi Bloom; Daily Telegraph  27th April 2010; Islington Tribune 7th May 2010


Notes on Image/s

Image can be found in:


Daily Telegraph Obituary

Comment of contributor/s and sources

Sources, as above, and as corrected by Joanna Norcross (daughter) 22nd October 2014.


Ken Jones

created 29/10/2013 at 11:25 pm, updated 27/11/2014 at 2:57 pm

3 thoughts on “Norcross, Lawrence John Charles

  1. Joanna Norcross

    My father died on the 31st of January 2010, in Steyning, West Sussex, where he was living following the death of his wife the previous July.

    His mother, my Grandmother, was not a servant when she became pregnant with my Father (the TES has a lot to answer for) and she did not return to service, this was 1934 after all!

    My Father graduated from Leeds University in 1957 so on that basis attended Ruskin from 1952 to 1954, but he most definitely studied English at Ruskin.

    1. Ian Burnham

      Hope to be able to contact Joanna.

      I am related (I believe through my grandfather Arthur Hedges) to Lawrie and your parents were very kind to me when I was studying in London in about 1971 and put me up in your home in Balham

      Anne and I reciprocated in Bristol when Matthew was struggling in the early 80s.

      Lawrie and Margaret came to our home about 6 years ago when we held a party and we sent a card each year but had not heard for a few years. This year the owners of the house they retired to in Warwickshire sent us an e mail advising of their deaths.

      Your parents were influential in my early years and I am so sorry to hear of their deaths.

      I would be keen to make contact with you (or Matthew) to share family history and catch up

      My number is 07774 112891 – and you have my e address.

      Hope to hear from you but send very best wishes and fondest memories of your folks Ian Burnham


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