The Old Boys' Network

Tim Pigott-smith reads the journal kept by Dr John Rae during his years as the headmaster of Westminster School from 1970 to 1986.



When he was interviewed for the job, Dr Rae was not sure what stance he took on illegal drugs, but in a famously liberal school in the heart of 1970s London his battle against drug users was to become a constant challenge.


Harold Wilson wins the 1974 general election, but, as Dr Rae becomes increasingly involved in the national debate on education, it is inflation rather than politics that presents the sternest challenge.


During a typical day, Dr Rae was called on to deal with everyone from the scholar who steals books to the Prime Minister.

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Dr Rae wonders whether he is as well qualified for the job as a colleague who is reputed to have killed a man with his bare hands when he was a member of the Special Operations Executive in the Second World War.