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Australian Dictionary of Biography

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Lockie, George William (1910–1971)

by Vic Honour

This article was published in Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 15, (MUP), 2000

George William Lockie (1910-1971), schoolmaster, was born on 18 February 1910 at Tipperary Point, Mount Morgan, Queensland, son of George Lockie, a carter from Scotland, and his native-born wife Tessie Esther, née Nelson. Educated locally, George won a scholarship to the Teachers' Training College, Brisbane, where he qualified in 1928. In May that year he was posted to Virginia State School. He continued to study part time in 1936-42, 1947, 1951-52 and 1955 at the University of Queensland (B.A., 1943).

Well known as a sportsman, Lockie captained both the Queensland and Brisbane Rugby League football teams in 1933-34. He played cricket for the Toombul club (life member 1943) and for Queensland in 1945-46; a sound batsman, he also bowled medium-paced teasers. In September 1933 he transferred to Ascot State School. On 4 August 1934 at the Methodist Church, Northgate, he married Keziah May Thomas, a 24-year-old shop-assistant. At Brisbane State High School (from 1940), he was appointed sports master.

In 1946 Lockie and his fellow-teacher V. G. Honour published Graphic Geography, a six-volume series for secondary students; these texts ran to numerous editions and were used in high schools throughout Australia. Honour and Lockie also wrote Graphic Social Studies: Third Grade (1952), an activities book for primary students. In 1948-52, for three afternoons each week, Lockie instructed young prisoners at Brisbane's Boggo Road gaol. Promoted acting-principal at Nambour High School in 1953, in the following year he became deputy-principal of Ipswich High School and Technical College. He was successively principal of Salisbury (1954-55), Mount Isa (1956-57) and Bundaberg (1958-60) high schools. In 1961 he returned to Brisbane State High as principal.

Lockie's term at B.S.H. saw the greatest expansion in the school's history: student numbers increased from 1091 in 1960 to 2183 in 1967. The Commonwealth Science Block and the Library Building were part of an extensive construction programme. During this period of change pupils achieved high academic standards and excelled at sport. Lockie often referred to the school as a team, and it was said of him that his captaincy made the team function smoothly and effectively. With an energetic personality and an authoritative manner, he was able to enforce discipline while retaining popularity with staff and students. He was a splendid leader who drew out the best in those under him, and many young sportsmen owed their success to his encouragement.

In 1971 Lockie won a scholarship to study at the University of London, but he was too ill to take it up. Survived by his wife and three daughters, he died of Hodgkin's disease on 2 November that year at his Northgate home and was cremated. He was posthumously awarded a fellowship by the Australian College of Education in May 1972.

Select Bibliography

  • Annual Magazine of the Brisbane State High School, 1971
  • Courier-Mail (Brisbane), 3 Nov 1971
  • Telegraph (Brisbane), 3 Nov 1971
  • teachers' staff cards (History Unit, Queensland Department of Education, Brisbane)
  • private information and personal information.

Citation details

Vic Honour, 'Lockie, George William (1910–1971)', Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, published first in hardcopy 2000, accessed online 2 October 2020.

This article was first published in hardcopy in Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 15, (MUP), 2000

View the front pages for Volume 15

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