Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Mattar East

I was looking through my sister’s old photos when I came across this one of her and her students at Mattar East Primary School.

Pat at Mattar East - SideA

My sister, Pat joined the teaching profession after she completed her Senior Cambridge (equivalent to our ‘O’ levels) exams and continued for more than 30 years until her retirement recently. Mattar East was her first assignment after completing her stint at the Teachers Training College in Paterson Road.

This photo was probably taken around 1970 or 71. You will notice that the picture is still very clear and you can easily make out the faces of the kids. What was even more interesting was the list of names written in pencil at the back of the photo.

Pat at Mattar East - SideB
PS: The first name is Woo Mei Lai. You can click on the photos for a better view.

If you happen to know any of these kids – they must be in their forties by now – please ask them to come here and say good morning to yesterday; as well as to their teacher Miss Lam (now Mrs Pat Liew).

As this school was just around the corner from my workplace, I decided to pay a visit to see what it is like now. Like my primary school, it has also become a school for handicapped children. The caretaker informed us that its neighbour, the Mattar West Secondary School has been demolished recently.

Mattar (6)

The 3 rows of banners read:

Thye Hua Kwan Moral Society
Moral Home For Disabled
Moral Hostel For Disabled

Here’s another photo of my sister next to our family car. Who can tell me the make/model of this (other) beauty?

Kam at Mattar East


Anonymous said...

Car model = Lancia?

Anonymous said...

Of course I know brand of this car, but doubtful of its model, because my wife bought this company car from her GM on the behalf of my father. Let me gave you some tips: It was British made, had a classy engine, with a column gear, and was quite popular in UK in the fifties. I had a love-hate relationship with this car.

Lam Chun See said...

I had my first driving lesson on this car. My father took me from Lorong Chuan all the way to Farrer Road and taught me 'clutch control' on the slope leading to Woolerton Park. It only has 1st, 2nd and 3rd gears.

Victor said...

Vauxhall or Ford?

Anonymous said...

Victor- you score a bull-eye. It is a Vauxhall Victor (your name).

Anonymous said...

No its a yellow prefect. the licence plate is a very lucky number. My mother struck lottery $7000. With the money she used it to build a garage and a stone bridge to replace the one which was made of trunks of coconut trees bound together. My father had a slight accident driving this car because he was very upst after being cheated of 10 thousand of by THE CHIT FUND COMPANY.
The picture of this yellow prefect car broughtr back fond memories. ONe day after school, being very poor in parking I accidentally damaged the left door of my principal, Mr Soon's car. I was too afraid to get out of the car and go upstairs to apologise to him. My immediately reaction was to go home. when I reached home, I plucked up courage to call him ( he was in the school office then )
I apologise to repeatedly and offered to pay for the damages.
He was very kind! He said " Miss Lam you are only a cadet teacher with your pay it will take you at least 6 mths to foot the bill"
I was thanked him with all sincerity.
In fact the pictures do bring back both pleasant unpleasant memories.
30 + yrs is a very long time.

Lam Chun See said...

My sister (Kam) has an uncanny ability to remember faces. But when it comes to cars, well .... I don't know. I am pretty sure it was the yellow Vauxhall Victor. I have a photo of Prefect to prove it. The accident was with a bus in Orchard Road right?

Kopiqueen said...

Hi, would you happen to have any pics of certain areas of Singapore in the 1960s? Namely:
Van Kleef Acquarium, National Theatre, Wonderland, Stamford library, Clifford Pier, Singapore River, Cathay Building?
I'm a writer for Singapore International Foundation's Singapore magazine and we're looking for some old pics to publish. Please let me know if you have any of the above. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

Chun See, myself and Victor conclude that the car in the picture is a Vauxall. To be fair to Pat, let us ask the other 2 brothers David and James to testify and give their verdicts. I and my siblings are oldies or to-be. Hence our memories are sometime questionable.

Chris Sim said...

Woa, a family that blogs together stays together. Let's not bicker over the car model/type. It's history, is it not? :P

Anonymous said...

Arguements, disputes, and controveries, among others, are spices of life. Just like in TV serials, without such ingredients, the programmes are just boring (but must have happy ending). What about you and Victor ?

Lam Chun See said...

Dear Kopiqueen. The photos you are looking for are easily available from the (National Archives of Spore. But you have to pay for them, especially since you require them for commercial purpose.

Lam Chun See said...

You can see a photo of a similar looking VV here.

Chris Sim said...

I absolutely agree with you Chun Chew. I wrote in jest, of course. Juz like a couple who never disagrees. How boring can that get? Not me and my Slim Lady (that's my other half), though. We "screamed" at each other from dawn till dusk. ROTFL.

What about Victor and me? Well, we're two pals who communicate better taking swipes at each other. Again, all in jest. Haha.

I never know a picture of an old 4-wheels can evoke such sweet and fond memories. Better go take a pic of my car now (juz realise I have none). I might wanna blog about it 20 or 30 years from now.

Anonymous said...

Chris - I do not think you and your slim lady are exponents of martial arts otherwise .... Wait till you reach my age or even Chun See's. By then, you may view old things in different perspective, not only cars.

Anonymous said...

Wow! Uncle See, it's so interesting to see a picture of my mother at her 1st job. It brought a big smile to my sister's and my face...

My mother behind the driving wheel of any car, as she mentioned, was a 'force not to be reckoned with. *Smile*.....

Her comments and the pictures brought back memories of all her little parking disasters - You can ask her about them. :-)

Lam Chun See said...

Last nite I had dinner with my siblings (all present except the one in Australia), and we had a bit of 'nostalgic' debate and concluded that the car was definitely the yellow Vauxhall Victor and the year was probably around 1974.

Anonymous said...

Oldies present were testing each other's memories of the past.

Chris - I take this opportunity to answer your hinting that you need to be courteous to an elderly chap. You need not hesitate. Please shoot. I look at blogging as a drink saloon in the Wild Wild West, where cowboys met, with their 6 shooters ready to fire from their hips, at the slightest provocation. The input on the NS issue testifies this point. As Chun See says (the unwritten rule) those who cannot take the heat, get out.

Victor said...

Chun Chew, you watched too much cowboy stories like Gunsmoke and The Good, The Bad And The Ugly already.

BTW, I guessed that car was a Vauxhall because my NS buddy, Mr Wee C H, was driving one quite regularly to CMPB way back in 1975-77. I think it was his dad's car. And the number plate was also very nice - either E100 or EA100, if I remember correctly. Must be bidded number.

Anonymous said...

My goodness, I went to a pri school that looked exactly the same. Looks like things were done the cost effective way then--buy one blueprint from one architect and build all the schools that same.

Anonymous said...

Vic & Chris - Just like you are star-struck all those screen sex kittens, we old chapies were given heavy doses of western cowboy films, including b&w ones. Boys at that time might even think that they were shooting red indians - in their dreams.

Anonymous said...

hello every body

i am looking for my old teacher Teo Gek Leng who was teaher in Mattar east integrated PRimary School.
I promised him to get my univercity degree but i couldnt find him any where . are there any body know him ,plase e mail me .

Tan Bok


Gerek! said...

Hah, what old memories .. I'm 18 .. spend my 6 years of primary school at Macpherson Primary ... (used to to there after merging with mattar and aljunied) .. good old days haha

Anonymous said...

Hi every body,

I studied at mattar east intergrated primary school from 1964-1969.
I have many fond memories in that school.
Yes,I remember miss lam,teo gek leng, shu moh chai, and they are teachers who taught me in those years.
I think is best that MEIPS deserve a re-life through alumnus register, in which we can network all former MEIPS students and teachers.
I can be contacted at,

Anonymous said...

Hi Lam Chun See,

I studied at Matter East Primary School from 1979- primary one to pri six.

I really had fond and happy memories of my school days. I could not remember whether Ms Lam taught me or not but sounded familiar. I remembered "Face" better!

I am happy there is a column abt my sch here!

Thank you very much!
ex-gal student

Unknown said...

I was a student there from 1983 to 1988. I really miss the experience I got. I'm a teacher myself now and can really feel the difference in the schooling experience.

Jay Westly Mahardale

Devagi Sanmugam said...

I studied in Mattar East Intergrated Primary School from 1963 till 1968. The school was founded in the year I joined Primary 1. I took Mandarin for 2 years and then learnt Malay because the first 2 years there was no Malay class.

Devagi Sanmugam

Kelvin said...

Miss Lam was my form teacher in 1967. I was in Primary 5C at Mattar East Primary School.


Pari S. Mohanam said...

Just happened to search for Matter East Primary School and found this site.

I studied in MEPS from 1963 to 1968. I took Mandarin in Primary 1 and changed to Malay in 1964 when there was a Malay Teacher.

Can't recall much and trying to find my classmates via facebook. Found none so far. May have to dig into my old albums one day to gather more details.

Great to read your blog. Thanks.

Wishing all a Happy New Year 2013! Cheers!

Pari S. Mohanam

Toko buku islam said...

Beautiful memories

Unknown said...

I was a classmate of Janice Woo Mei Lai and could recognize and remember all of them in the photo. Wish we have the opportunity to meet one another soon as we are now 65+ years of age.

How is Ms Lam doing ? Still remember Ms Nai, Mr Tan-cher, Mrs Choo (Ms Eng) and her hubby, Ms Seow.

Could someone initiate the link ?

Thank you and blessings