St Andrew’s School Log Extracts

(From ‘The First 120 Years’ – researched by Jo Plested)

1863 Oct 27th: William Price Jones took charge of Burnham Mixed National School with his wife providing needlework and knitting each afternoon. School hours are 9 – 12 and 2 – 4.

1863 Dec 3rd: School opened late because north wind blew down chimney. School damaged by fearful gale.

1864 Apr 29th: Introduction of borders for growing flowers (sep. boys and girls).

1864 July 18th: Twelve children kept away for summer months – three boys assist in puzzle gardens, two boys donkey driving, two at brickyard, two girls helping mother, one errand boy, one boy driving the team and one shoe-shine boy.

1866 Feb 26th: Eva Randell withdrawn as she was asked to clean school porch.

1866 May 16th: Jane Morse withdrawn as parents object to her carrying water to closets.

1866 Oct 12th: Holiday to see launch of lifeboat ‘Cheltenham’.

1867 Sept 10th: Herbert and Kate Priest withdrawn as unwilling to associate with some poor children at school.

1868 Nov 17th: The children left at 11 a.m. to see the ceremony of laying the foundation of the Burnham market house and town hall.

1869 June 14th: Burnham lamb fair day.

1869 Sept 29th: Low attendance due to opening of market house.

1870 Aug 25th:  Children had annual treat on vicarage lawn at 5.30.

1870 Oct 24th: Big storm. Scanty attendance. Tide 6 inches high in kitchen.

1871 Aug 12th: Failed to muster school p.m. because of an excursion to the town from Bristol and other places to attend some foolish amusement in field near school.

1871 Oct 2nd: New head John Fisher takes charge and finds the children very rudely inclined and discipline lax.

1872 Jan 22nd: Small-pox in town.

1872 March 1st: Children received 2 buns and orange. Thanksgiving for recovery of Prince of Wales.

1872 June 3rd: Mrs Winter came and abused me most disgracefully, swore at my son and threatened his life because I kept her daughter in after school instead of beating her. Mr Cox also gave me insolence because I had disagreed with is daughter Sarah.

1880 Feb 20th: Decided to issue notice to parents that no child could have certificate of merit without attendance at school. law seems to have no effect on them.

1880 Mar 12th: Senior pupil teacher accused of striking boy with slate causing severe swelling of the glands. However proved to be mumps which is prevalent.

1881  Log records the accidental death by drowning of four youngsters which occurred on July 15th. Their gravestone stands in the churchyard just inside the main gate to the left.

1884 March 20th: Mr Hooper gave notice his son Alfred will not attend school as his nervous system is out of order.

1885 Jan 20th: Attendance officer Mr Elliott died today. The committee now have the opportunity to revise their procedures which are simply a farce.

1885 June 16th: Spoke severely to Miss Denby about striking children.

1885 Dec 3rd: Ernest Hancock disobedient to teacher and excessively impudent to me so I was obliged to cane him.

1887 Jan 31st: Sale of wreckage on pier, so many boys absent.

1887 June 21st: Holiday in honour of Queen Victoria’s golden jubilee.

1887 Dec 22nd: Third and upper standards do most  work on paper rather than slates.

1889 Dec 20th: Vicar came to distribute prizes and certificates. All the infants received a picture book or card.

1890 Feb 28th: New offices erected. They are provided with automatic flushing apparatus – a great improvement on the old ones.

1891 June 27th: H.M.  Inspectors Report “The school is orderly and under good control.”

1892 Feb 10th: No school due to Bostrek’s menagerie in town. [Presumably the famous Bostock & Wombwell’s travelling menagerie]

1892 Dec 13th: Mr Fenn of National Temperance League came to give a lecture on the chemical effects of alcohol.

1894 Sept 20th: Infants start clay-modelling, basket-weaving and doll-making.

1894 Oct 29th: Education dept. states that the rooms can accommodate 320 children.

1894 Dec 6th: After school we had an exhibition of Edison’s phonograph which was much appreciated.

1897 July 13th: Attendance low due to horse races.

1897 Sept 6th: During holiday school painted and gas laid on.

1898 Feb 23rd: Inspector investigated charges of undue chastisement. Reginald Wilcox stated he was punished for not having a book – then said he could’nt remember it – but his mother had told him to say it.

1898 Mar 8th: The education dept. Considered the inspector’s report about the infliction  of chastisement on the children and concluded that allegations of cruelty made against Mr May were unfounded.

1899 Apr 10th: Golf tournament has taken a number of boys to act as caddies.

1902 June 23rd: Broke up for rest of week for King’s coronation festivities.

1903 Feb 13th: Drill in the playground but spectators a great nuisance and interfere with children’s attention.

1903 July 13th: panic in town due to diphtheria outbreak. many absent.

1903 Aug 31st: School re-opens. New classroom, cloakroom, lavatory – no furniture yet.

1904 July 22nd: Band playing opposite school each morning and afternoon interferes with school work.

1905 Infants
1905 Juniors

1905 Feb 9th: Girls received first lesson in drawing.

1906 Mar 20th: Took children to Wombwell and Bostrek’s menagerie for natural history lesson.

1906 Sept 11th: A cookery centre has been established for 3 classes to attend.

1906 Dec 4th: Decided at managers’ meeting to re-name school St Andrew’s School instead of National School.

1909 May 5th: A new departure. A school nurse appointed by county council inspected the heads of all 378 children.

Thanks to Jack Luxon for photo above (see comments at bottom of main page). Judging from the background this may have been taken outside the original new infants annexe, the ‘Tin School’. Back row 2nd from left is Howard Luxon (b.1905); middle row 2nd from right is Jack’s father Leslie (b.1907).

1911 May 26th: Considerable interference from work erecting a new pavilion and extending the esplanade in front of the school.

1914 Oct 30th: Eight Belgian refugee children on register

1915 Feb 5th: Lessons disrupted by soldiers marching on the seafront, blowing bugles and beating drums.

1922 Oct 4th: School assembled at 2 o’clock and marched to the new cottage hospital for unveiling of a war memorial.

1927 May 12th: Two old pupils, Walter and John Bodger from Los Angeles called today.

1927 July 25th: School inspections notes the school is insufficiently staffed. The head, with a class of over 40 himself is unable to follow up his periodical criticisms of the other 5 class teachers ‘though a young and vigorous man, he is clearly feeling the strain and should have further help’.

1933 Nov 6th: The electric cable has been brought into school at my expense.

1937 Nov 8th: 160 children attended ‘As You Like It’ at Ritz Cinema; 155 attended ‘Romeo and Juliet’.

1938 Feb 4th: All Berrow children and those living in Highbridge sent home on instruction from County, owing to typhoid epidemic at Highbridge and West Huntspill.

1941 Mar 28th: heavy practice bombing badly shook the building. On examination by a builder, ceiling collapsed. Room was vacant, children having been evacuated.

For some unknown reason there were no log entries for 1943 – 51.

1954 Apr 6th: 50 children and 2 teachers saw a ballet performance in the pavilion.

1955 Jul 22nd: School closed for summer vacation. While aircraft break the sound barrier above u, inside the school during this same vacation electricity has at last replaced gas lighting. Hallelujah!

1955 Oct 10th: Staff have agreed to paint the rear of the school and oil the front gate at half term. I have no office but there is no money available so must try to raise the money by jumble sales etc.

1956 Jan 20th: Received film projector and screen. Now we need films and must have money for this purpose.

1956 Feb 27th: Grant of 12 pounds 10 shillings made by managers towards purchase of wireless. Fire extinguishers still required.

1956 Nov 14th: A letter from Divisional Education Office states “There would appear to be no objection to the school being known locally as St Andrew’s. Until the authority receives an official communication, the school will be known as the Burnham on Sea VC School.” [see entry of 1906 above]

1961 May 31st: Telephone installed today.

1968 July 1st: Second years moved into the new [mobile] classrooms on the Love Lane site.

1972 Mar 23rd: First Burnham Festival held today. Eight schools took part, contributing poems, drama, choral speaking and record groups.

1973 Feb 16th: I took over the keys to the new school today from the site foreman.

1973 Mar 23rd: Moving day! Staff and helpers sen most of the day  emptying boxes and putting away

1973 Mar 30th: Apart from various blockages (drain), leakages and overflows, things have passed off well. 269 on roll

1973 Jun 25th: This week we celebrate the opening of our new school with music, dancing and drama. parents and visitors were received on Tuesday. Wednesday’s sports day was postponed until Friday because of rain……A cheese and wine evening was organised by the Parent Association.

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2 thoughts on “St Andrew’s School Log Extracts”

  1. Hello, I’m interested in more of the school log. In The Book of Burnham there is a reference to WW1 evacuees as well as Belgians. My grandfather John Henry Forbes, born 1905 in Fulham was evacuated or adopted to Burnham, along with his brother. I’m sure there must be mention of them in the log. John was later in the Burnham Fire Brigade.
    Any source suggestions would be welcome.

    1. Hi Glenn,

      Thanks for your comment. The extracts we have from the school log were not taken from the log directly but from a booklet entitled ‘St Andrew’s School: The First 120 Years’, researched by Jo Plested. A copy of this may be available from the local library. However I do not recall any mention of refugees in the extracts in that publication, I think I probably would have included it in what was uploaded. The only thing I can suggest is that you contact the school directly to see whether the log still exists. Unfortunately many such documents tend to be lost over the years.

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