Chapter XIV.


The earliest mention' of Education in Sutton is to be found in the Will of Ann Mason in 1669. She was a member of the Langford family and left a Close at Huthwaite for teaching of the poorest children to read the Bible. Trustees were appointed, the Trust being still in existence. In 1724 Elizabeth Boot gave a piece of land at Fulwood, called Pot House Close for the same purpose.

In 1743 in a Visitation of the Diocese by the Archbishop of York, the Curate of Sutton, John Green, who resided at Pleasley stated that " there were four schools but not any public one." In 1785 the Rev. Thomas Cursham opened a Private Boarding and Day School on High Pavement, and in 1801 the Rev. Thomas Roome, Congregational Minister also opened a School, both describing themselves as having select Academies. In 1818 a meeting was held under the Chairmanship of Mr. Samuel Woolley, residing at the Hall, to consider the question of providing a School, and it was decided to found one with the aid of the National Society, and in 1819 the first public school was opened. Mr. John King being the first Master. The Committee of management was Messrs. Leivers, Lindley, Rhodes and Daubeny. The School was held in the old Tithe Barn, given by the Duke of Portland, the present Vicarage now occupying the site. In 1836 another school was founded on High Pavement principally by the Congregationalists assisted by a grant of £125 from the Government. In 1872 this school was handed over to the new School Authority, or Board.

In 1845 the old Tithe Barn became useless and the present National Schools were built. School Boards were founded in 1870 by Act of Parliament and a School Board for Sutton elected in 1871, and in 1891 Education was made free. The first School Board at Sutton was elected 20 April, 1871. The members were Rev. Chas. Bellairs, Vicar, Rev. E. Pringle, Cong. Minister, Messrs. Wm. Carter (Forest Side) whose son later became M.P. for the Mansfield Division, Geo. Kendall, Wm. Bonser, two of his sons later becoming members, Herbert Jephson, B. B. Slater, National Schoolmaster who later on took Holy Orders.

The School Board Census in 1871 gave a population of 6,483 being taken by Mr. Thomas Wilson. The children of school age numbered 1,892 and of these 398 were between the ages of 3 and 5, and 1,484 between 5 and 13. Of this number 654 were attending Public Schools, 424 Private Schools, 328 at work, and 486 at play.

Little Lane (Church Street) Infant School was opened 1873, High Pavement British School was taken over by the Board 27 June, 1872, Forest Side (now known as Mansfield Road Schools) 1875, Hardwick Street Schools built by Mr. Samuel Daubeny Hibbert for £6,410 were opened 1878, Forest Side Boys' extension built by Mr. Henry Shaw for £328 was opened 1882, the Girls built by Mr. H. Shaw for £1,930 opened 1891, and the Boys' School also built by H. Shaw cost £1,727 and was opened 7 February, 1888. In 1899 land was bought in Priestsic Lane at 5/- per yard and Boys, Girls and Infants Schools were built by Mr. Henry Shaw for £9,140 and opened by Mr. G. G. Bonser 1 November, 1900.

The Officers of the School Board were as follows :— Chairman.Vice-Chairman.Clerk.

1871 Rev. Chas. Bellairs Rev. E. Pringle Rev. E. Pringle.

G. H. Hibbert, 1871-1872. W. A. Plumbe, 1872. do. do. do. do.


Chairman. Vice-Chairman. Clerk.
1871 Rev. Chas. Bellairs Rev. E. Pringle Rev. E. Pringle. G. H. Hibbert, 1871-1872. W. A. Plumbe, 1872.
1874 Geo. Kendall William Bonser do.
1877 do. do. do.
1880 Fred. Wm. Buck Saml. Stevenson do.
1883 Saml. Stevenson Walter Straw do.
1886 do. Geo. Gershom Bonser, resigned 1900
1889 do. do. 1900. J. B. Meggitt  
1892 G. Gershom Bonser Saml. Stevenson J. D. Fidler.
1895 John Pickard Elijah Pepper do.
1898 Jno. Q. Christian do. do.
1901 Jno. H. Lincoln Rev. Jno. Stephenson do.
1904 School Boards ceased to exist under an Act of Parliament of 1902 operating from 1 April, 1903, County Councils becoming the Authority, School expenses being spread over the County.

On 22 August, 1910 an Upper Standard (or Higher Elementary) School was opened on the old Forest Road, or road to the Railway Station, at a cost of £5,826. Iron buildings had been opened 5 March, 1906 for 285 Upper Standard Scholars, these giving place to the permanent buildings which provided accommodation for 192 Upper Standard and 120 Higher Elementary Scholars. The whole reverting on 1 August, 1912 to Upper Standards. Additional wooden buildings were added in 1932 to accommodate forty scholars at a cost of £195.

An area of one and a half acres at the Hillocks was purchased and Elementary Schools were opened 15 April, 1912 to accommodate 248 Senior Scholars and 150 Infants at a cost of £4,376 9s. 0d., the site costing £386 13s. Od. In 1932 further Junior accommodation was built to accommodate 192 Infants at a cost of £3,400, but semi-permanent.

Nearly one and three-quarter acres on the Huthwaite Road were purchased at a cost of £896 9s. 6d. and temporary buildings erected and opened on 22 August, 1910. Permanent buildings including Domestic Subjects Centre were opened, ground floor 10 January, 1916, and first floor 11 June, providing accommodation for 360 Senior Mixed and 360 Junior Mixed.

These were re-organised in 1925 for 310 Senior Mixed, 260 Junior Mixed and 150 Infants. They were again reorganised under the Hadow scheme and opened 19 August, 1929 for Senior Mixed and Infants. A wooden Manual Instruction Room was opened in 1920 at a cost of £230.