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Middleton St John's Infants' School

Taken from log book in Durham Record Office

The log begins in 1863 but first note suggests it is older.  The school was in Middleton which was the old borough of Hartlepool, but seems to have been in some way affiliated to Christ Church which was West Hartlepool

June 1st 1863 Commenced school under new code.

Aug 24 1863 Notice from government that all girls over 7 must learn to sew.

Mr Haselwood, curate of Middleton, regular visitor for catechism and hymns.

Mar 1st 1864 All the Fisher children taken away from school and sent to West Hartlepool folowing their sister being fined for late attendance.

Mar 10th Holiday for wedding of Prince of Wales

Number of entries in 1860s about boys being sent home to get washed and punished for being dirty. Children taught a songabout cleanliness.

In Aug 1864, 67 children at school and much reliance on monitors from upper school.

An inspector in 1864 said ' school is in fair order under Miss Ogden's management but her discipline, though careful, requires to be improved'   Miss Odgens left in 1864 and was replaced by Miss Emma Beaumont.

June 1902 Children from Harbour Terrace left to join Exchange School West Hartlepool.

Coronation of Edward V1, Sir Thomas and Lady Richardson, mayor and mayoress presented medals and chocolates to children.

1903 and 71 infants on roll.       Dec 1914  64 on roll.

Mar 15th 1915  School has been closed since December 15th 1914 following Bombardment. Only 44 children present at reopening. 9 have left district.

School was dam by German shell which struck north gable, room at far end full of debris where large portion of ceiling fell. Clock smashed and window overlooking boys' playground broken.

One of our scholars, Bertie Young was struck on head with piece of shell and died.

Nov 28 1916 Closed school as attendance very poor following Zeppelin raid last night.

Jun 29 1921 School closed to take children to Blackhall Rocks.

Jun 9th 1922 Notice from Education Committee that schools should close on Wednesday  afternooms in July

Jan 3 1931  School combined with Junior Mixed department

Sep 8th 1939 Miss Hodgson and Miss Smyth take 37 children to Filey as evacuees.  School closed and remaining children taken in church hall and 1 Sea Terrace.

Mar 11 1940 Infant Dept reopened. Sessions erratic because of air raids. Many references to no lighting or heating. No coke, no boiler.

1946 average number of children 55.

1953 average down to 31 and then down to 6. School officially closed and this final quote is in the log book,

' The village of Middleton is now a depressing scene of empty, broken down houses. I am pleased that the children who left the school in the last few years are now living in better conditions.'  L Coward Headmaster Middleton St John's.


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