Bewerley Street - Memories of a Leeds school that left its mark

This photo is sure to evoke memories for generations of schoolchildren in south Leeds.

Wednesday, 12th May 2021, 5:38 pm
PIC: West Yorkshire Archive Service

Bewerley Street Infant School in Hunslet was designed by George Corson and opened its doors in August 1873.

By the 1950s, the school was for juniors, aged seven to 11 years. The Infants had moved to a school on Hunslet Hall Road.

This photo rewinds to June 1964 shows classrooms with large, arched windows and behind the high wall, toilets are located.

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46 never seen before photos of Hunslet through the years

It was reported to be the first purpose-built school to be put up by the Leeds Schools Board.

Yet this claim was refuted by Edward N Garratt, a former headteacher of Hunslet Carr School from 1968 to 1972.

He told the YEP in 2006: "Examination of the archives will reveal that Hunslet Carr was the first school to be opened in 1872 after the 1870 Education Act.

"The old log book even states that the then headmaster of Hunslet Carr went to the opening of Bewerley Street School in 1873. Some of the entries were tragic – viz when a number of pupils died from cholera. Some were tragic/humorous as when 'a certain father came to see me, fell forward on to his face and expired – he was not excited.'

Former pupils recall how the school was used as a polling station at election times and vividly remember the names of teachers - Cyril Blakeborough (headmaster), Frank Ingle, Harry Jepson, Robert Hudson, Robert Naylor, Peter Latham and David Addlestone.

The photo is published courtesy of West Yorkshire Archive Service which collects and looks after the unique documentary heritage of the region dating from the 12th century to the present day - more than 800 years of local history. It also runs Catablogue, an online blog dedicated to preserving the past, serving the present and protecting the future.

It is one of the most talked about on photographic archive Leodis, which is run by Leeds Library & Information Service. They also run heritage blog The Secret Library Leeds, which provides a behind the scenes look at the Central Library and highlights from its special collections, including rare books hidden away in the stacks.

ARE YOU A FORMER PUPIL OF BEWERLEY STREET? Share your memories with Andrew Hutchinson via email at: [email protected] or tweet him - @AndyHutchYPN****************

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