I was a long way from London but several friends whose parents lived nearer took me out for the day when it was our turn to have a day or half-day's leave. We had some happy days exploring nearby areas;their kindness in sharing these outings when time with parents was limited was much appreciated. My aunts and uncles from Liverpool also came to visit so I was very lucky.However I was less lucky when my father came, having been to Liverpool on business. He found we were in quarantine for poliomyelitis (happily the sufferer recovered well).I could only see him for ten minutes in the front hall as he was not allowed into school and I was not allowed out. This was a concession as he had travelled such a long way in wintry weather. Later my parents did come to see me in a school play. The only half-term when we went home was in 1953 for The Coronation. This was special as there was no television reception in the mountains so if we were to see the programmes showing the ceremony it was necessary to leave Dolgellau.(On our return all the boarders were taken to the cinema in Dolgellau to see the pageantry in colour).
Outings such as to Aberystwyth to the National Library of Wales, to Chester Cathedral for the Mystery Plays, to Stratford to see 'Othello' and Llangollen to the International Eisteddfod were highlights arranged by staff notably Miss 'Doh' Davies. Thanks to Miss Thompson and colleagues we also travelled to match fixtures at other schools and to swim at Fairbourne on summer evenings.
We Londoners travelled in a reserved carriage from Paddington on the 11.10 am. each term and waved to our parents who were getting to know one another on the platform. The early train passed the school at breakfast time and we often waved to trains in the manner of 'The Railway Children'. When my cousin, Angela Kay, five years younger than I, joined the school she and her father (who must have arisen with the dawn chorus to arrive from Liverpool so early to fetch her)would stand on the bridge overlooking Dolgellau Station and wave to me as I took the early train home at the end of term before they drove on their own journey.