Travelling Survey

Should you see some of the senior boys at the school with furrowed brows, bent backs and bleary eyes, you may be sure that they are the perpetrators of the survey you are about to read. The reason for the survey was to find cut whether any clear-cut pattern would emerge from the boys' daily travelling habits. It was hoped that some pointer would be given which would show conclusively, for example, that a first former travelled further than his colleague in the fifth, or vice-versa. Long hours were spent in preparing the questionnaires; much longer hours were spent in seeking our quarry - the clear-cut pattern but in all four-hundred papers returned we could not find a single significant trend. Another reason (excuse!) had to be found for ploughing on to the bitter end - we hoped that we might astound parents and boys alike with a mass of statistical data, compiled and analysed. Being thus forewarned - En garde!

The four-hundred boys from whom intelligible replies were received (or was it the four-hundred intelligent boys from whom replies were received?) travel a total of 2,079 miles each morning - i.e. 4,158 each day. On an annual reckoning that would be about 831,600 miles or about 3 times the distance from the earth to the moon If one were to take a static school population in the first year, the boys at present in their first term at the school will have travelled over 1,052,000 miles before they have taken their O Level examinations. Each boy, during his normal school life, will have travelled 10,300 miles or about 31/2 times the distance from Southampton to New York.

We come now to the topic of the time spent in travelling. The fatal time spent travelling on a daily basis is 506 hours; in anyone year period the pupils at the school spend over 100,000 hours on the road. As the average school year lasts for 200 days, a boy who takes an hour a day to travel to school spends a total period annually of 17 days 16 hours in transit. Over a five-year period he travels for a total of a solid twelve weeks. Therefore if he had worked at the rate of 5/- per hour for the time spent on the road, he could have earned 504. It might interest the parents to know that if they received 5/- per hour for every hour spent in travelling by their sons collectively they could earn 25,000!

Speed of travel. The average speed of travel to school works out at 8.2 miles per hour. (Most travel by overground transport and this might be indicative of the low average).

Click! for a - Diagram showing number of boys and distance travelled in miles.

General Findings
Over 50% live within 4 miles of the school.
         17.5% live more than 10 miles from the school.
         16 miles is the furthest distance travelled.
         1 furlong (disputed between a few claimants) is the shortest.

Replies received totalled 400.

Total number of miles travelled per Form
1st year
2nd year
3rd year
4th year
5th year
172 miles
146.7 miles
150.5 miles
136 miles
138 miles

Daily travel average per boy per day in miles
1st year boys
2nd year boys
3rd year boys
4th year boys
5th year boys
5.6 each
5.3 each
5.6 each
5.3 each
5.5 each

From the diagrammatic representation (Click!) of our results it can be seen (below) that the "Catchment Area" can be divided into four main regions:-

  1. Those areas up to 4 miles from the school contain the highest number of pupils
  2. Those areas from 4 miles to 7 miles - here the population figures drop.
  3. The figure rises again in the 7 to 10 mile belt.
  4. The numbers drop off again after 10 miles. (Individual figures over 12 miles are not shown).
We hope that these facts and figures given so far have given you something to think about, else all our solid hours of work have gone for nought. Incidentally did you know that you normally spend a third of your life in bed? Translated into terms of school life it means that from entry to GCE a boy has spent 2 years in bed! On top of this he spends annually only 1,400 hours in school; in five years he has been at school for a continuous period of 42 weeks. This works out at 2 years over the five year school period! We'll bet you never thought about it like that before! Our final comment is that we only wish that we had back the 15 weeks we have spent travelling before 0 Levels - think what we could do with that!

G. Borgeat and B. Mulcahy L.6

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