British boarding school stories started in the Victorian era with Thomas Hughes’s Tom Brown Schooldays. An extremely popular juvenile fiction genre from the 1940s to 70s, interest in it peaked again towards the end of the twentieth century and the beginning of the twenty-first, with J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter books. I never attended boarding school, but still loved the school stories written by Enid Blyton, and considered my 2/6 (the price of an Armada paperback back in the sixties) well spent. I really liked Anthony Buckeridge’s Jennings books, too, of which I had a couple in hardcover form and was able to borrow the rest from the school library. As to Harry Potter, well, like most children, and many adults, I love Hogwarts! In all the above, boarding schools get favourable press and make for entertaining reading, but some people who did attend such institutions assure me life there really wasn’t quite that ‘jolly’, coming closer to Charles Dickens’s accounts than Blyton’s, Buckeridge’s and Rowling’s.
In Generations Five, the Generation Three children attend a 1950s British boarding school.