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St Mark's School and Church
Fletcher Street, Bolton, Lancashire

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St Marks History Through The Years

1856

The Vicar of the Holy Trinity the Rev Joseph Lowe visualised that the area in his parish covered by fields and lanes would soon become thickly populated district and noted when children had finished their daily toils they were seen to be roaming the bye lanes or waste lands growing in ignorance and acquiring habits of vice, so he thought of a way to alleviate the problem.

1857

A cottage on Lever St was acquired and used as a Sunday School, the Rev Lowe was assisted by Squire Openshaw including Mr Thomas Hall Arrowsmith and many others.

1858

The project prospered and two more cottages were built next to the original one as more homes were being built nearby so more children needed their minds occupied.

1859

Row after row of cottages being built for the workers of the factories and mills that were also being built in the district that was once wasteland two years ago.

1860

The Rev Lowe saw that the Sunday School was becoming overcrowded and he found himself bound to attempt greater things. Mr George Piggott purchased the surrounding land for the building of a proper school and so the present school building came to be built. Piggott St and Piggott Park is named after George
The Earl of Bradford Orlando George Charles Bridgeman 1819-1898 gave £200 towards the £3,255 it would cost to build and fit a new school, it was designed by a Bolton Architect Mr C Holt and consisted of two rooms for boys and girls school each 102ft by 20ft and an infants room 60ft by 20ft and a Master's house.
The Sunday school was to be transferred into this new building so a Day School could start.

1861

08.08.1861 The opening of the school by the Lord Bishop of Manchester at a tea party at which 300 people were present, it was named Lever Street Holy Trinity National School, it opened it's doors the very next day and the Rev Lowe put one of his curates in charge of the district the Rev John George Doman for the first year the school was given a grant of £162.
The number of children on the roll in it's first year was 281.

Pupil Teacher Miss Elizabeth Booth begins her duties at the school.

Mrs E. Bentley starts duties at the school as Girls Head Mistress.

Pupil Teacher Miss E. Beswick begins her duties at the school she eventually becomes the Girls Head Mistress in 1866

1863

Because of the shortage of qualified teachers in the early years and because teaching was not regarded as a profession so began a system that employed Pupil Teachers, they usually were from the same school and began teaching at age 13 and their apprenticeship would last for 4 to 5 years. They would be taught the lessons for the day by the Master before school opens and then would go on to teach the rest of the pupils what they had learnt, this practice continued up to around 1906-07, althought the age in 1878 was put up to 14.

1864

1865

Mrs Haimer follows pupil John Thomas Grimshaw to school and complains that he threw a stone at her door, J. T. Grimshaw is severely dealt with and the whole school is told of the folly and consequences of such daring and mischievous acts.

Punishments in schools prior to Lever St Holy Trinity Schools/St Mark's being built.
Children who misbehaved could have been fastened together with what was called a YOKE this piece of apparatus was made of wood and fitted round the neck and usually accommodated two pupils, and they were made to walk round the school (one forwards and one backwards).
Depending on the offence, Other punishments ranged considerably, from wearing a card around the pupils neck telling of the offence perpetrated, wearing of a Dunce cap, Naughty Corners, Tied up in sacks and put in corner, to being put in a basket which was hauled way up to the ceiling.

Beatings were on the increase after 1850 with Caning being the most popular.

1866

14.08.66 The Lord Bishop of Manchester licensed the Rev John George Doman to the incumbency, Rev Doman begins at once to collect funds for the building of a Church.
24.10.66 The Rev John George Doman performs his first recorded Baptism in the New Parish of St Marks on Thomas Fletcher Class of the 1870s.

Scarlet fever hits the area and the school attendance numbers begin to fall.

Many children arrived at school dirty and were sent home to wash, eventually washing facilities were organised.

The Teachers begin to use Prepared Chalk instead of Lump Chalk.

05.11.66 Head Mr John H Norris leaves the school his replacement is Mr William Webster.
13.11.66 Triffitt stayed at home today on the sick list - went on quite well without him as with him, he is not much good
Girls Head Mistress Mrs E. Bentley leaves the school, her replacement is Miss E. Beswick.

1867

Baptisms relating to the School or Church
15.09.67 George Doman son of the Rev John George Doman vicar of St Marks church
The school is renamed St Marks and with pupil numbers growing the school building was considerably enlarged in size to accommodate.

Thomas Winwood was sent back into the Classroom to stay after school, he went home through the window instead.

A gentleman walked into the school and requested to see the working of the school and then marches out without saying who he was or what he came to see, the bemused staff carried on regardless.
Miss E. Carter starts her duties as the Girls Head Mistress.

20.08.67 Monitor Thomas Morris leaves to start a job as a moulder.

23.08.67 Teacher Mr Thomas Morris starts his duties at St Marks.

1868

The schools gas lamps were lit for the very first time during school hours, it was hard to tell which was the brightest, the lamps or the eyes of the children who sat in amazement.
Miss Emily Barlow begins her duties as a Monitor this year.

06.01.68 Mr Thornley from Ince near Wigan starts his duties as assistant master today.

1869

15.04.69 Teacher Mr William Charles Brown starts his duties at St Marks.

1870

St Marks and other schools attendances suffer considerably with small pox and scarlet fever being prevalent in the area.
Girls Head Mistress Miss E. Carter leaves St Marks.
Mrs Birnie begins her duties at St Marks.
15.08.70 Teacher Mr Kemp starts his duties at St Marks.
12.09.70 Teacher Mr Shepherd starts his duties at St Marks.

1871

27.03.71 Mr T Robinson commenced duties as assistant teacher this day.
On St Marks Day (25th April) the St Marks place of worship is consecrated by Bishop Fraser. the church was designed by the architect R. K. Freeman

The foundation stone of the church was laid in name by James Barlow of the well known Barlow and Jones firm and later Mayor of Bolton.

St Mark's Church held the distinction of being the first Church in Bolton to provide it's seating "Free and Open" forever.

St Marks School is near bursting and the opening of Victoria Wesleyan School on 9th January helps decrease the schools overcrowding problem.

1872

13.01.72 SMALL POX IN BOLTON
There are at present ten cases of small pox in the borough, and though the disease has for the last few days been on the decline, the Bolton Sanitary Inspector Mr Kay, became aware of three fresh cases. However the above number being a mere cypher when compared with the population of the borough and with the serious prevalence of the disease elsewhere.
Mr John Fell and Lily Catterall become Pupil Teachers.
Mrs Birnie leaves St Marks.
27.03.71 Teacher Mr Kemp finished his duties at St Marks

1873

25 year old Miss Selina Greaves starts her duties as Head Mistress to the Infants.
Pupil William Hardie starts his duties as a Pupil Teacher this year.

1874

School leaving age raised from thirteen to fourteen.
04.09.74 The Bolton Flower show is in full swing, several half time boys just happen to play truant this day.
24.12.74 Teacher Mr John E Parr leaves the school to commence duties in Altringham

1875

15.01.75 Mr William Robert Buckley starts his duties at the school as Assistant Master.
22.08.75 Pupil James Gregory becomes a Monitor and starts teaching other pupils at the school.
Scarlet Fever hits the area again and pupil attendances start to fall.

Some boys at the school are considered for work as full time employees.

1876

21.08.76 Mr Anderson Rushworth commences his duties at St Marks, he is to stay for 38 years.

1877

16.03.77 Pupil Teacher John Fell leaves St Marks to start duties at Eagley Schools as assistant master.
Mr George Hayhurst joins the staff at St Marks.
Assistant Master Mr William Robert Buckley leaves the school.

1878

11.01.78 Ex pupil and Pupil Teacher Mr John Fell returns to take up duties as assistant master.
Girls Head Mistress Miss E. Beswick leaves St Marks.
Miss Sarah Catherine Hindley joins the staff as Head Mistress over the Girls section.

1879

06.01.79 John Thomas Spencer commenced duties as an assistant teacher
17.01.79 Mr George Hayhurst leaves to enter the Saltley Training College.
01.05.79 May Day processions.
31.10.79 Holiday to allow the work for building of the new class room.
11.11.79 Workmen begin to pull down the wall on the North side.  

1880

Increases in the School Pence for All Day and Half Timers to 4d per week and to 3d for the Lower Class.
Mr John Fell who became a Pupil Teacher in 1872 leaves St Marks.

1881

Mr James Higson joins the staff as Assistant Teacher.
Mr William Hurst Albinson joins the staff as an Assistant Teacher but leaves the same year.

1882

27.03.82 Slaterfield Board School opens it doors, 37 pupils from St Marks are transferred to the new school.
Girls Head Mistress Miss Sarah Catherine Hindley leaves St Marks to Marry (St Marks Church).
Miss Betsy Fallows becomes the new Girls Head Mistress.
Mr James Gregory leaves St Marks
Mr John Thomas Spencer leaves St Marks
20 year old Mr George Fred Haslam joins the staff as Assistant Teacher

1883

21 year old Mr Robert Foulds joins the staff this year as an Assistant Teacher.
Miss Cheetham joins the St Marks staff.
Mr William Hurst Albinson returns as an Assistant Teacher.

1884

The door between the boys and girls playground is often found unlocked, instructions are passed on to all concerned that the boys and girls must be kept separate at all times.
The Superintendent Squire Openshaw dies, he was there from the beginning of the Sunday School.

Teacher Mr Thomas Wild's pay is now increased to £50 p/a.

Assistant Teacher Mr William Hurst Albinson leaves St Marks.

1885

28.07.85 John George Doman marries Miss Eliza Anne Greenhalgh at the Parish Church.

14.11.85 Alfred Ray a pupil from Standard V was involved in a factory accident which resulted in the loss of an arm.

Mr Joseph Causey joins the staff as an Assistant Teacher.

St Marks Vicarage on High St is built.

1886

A male member of staff sent word his absence was because his wife was seriously ill, the Head and a female teacher visited the teacher and his wife to see if could assist in any way but the teachers wife was found to be quite well and had not been ill. He was dismissed immediately.
28.06.86 Clarendon St School was opened for the first time this morning, Several boys left to go there.

Mr James Higson leaves St Marks this year.

19 year old Mr Robert Hall joins the staff at St Marks.

Assistant Teacher Mr Joseph Causey leaves St Marks.

1887

21.03.87 Extensions to the school are started.
Notices are sent out for the parents of poor children to apply for school fees for the coming quarter.
Miss M. Holmes starts her duties as Infants Head Mistress

1888

The school is so successful and popular that when a post for a new headmistress to the infant section is posted, the school received 150 applicants for the post, a very high number indeed even for now, never mind for the 1880s.
Mr Charles Herbert Field joins the staff as Assistant Teacher.
Mr Ralph Ashcroft begins his duties at St Marks.

1889

The extensions are finished the school has two more Classrooms one either side of the large hall, one for the boys and one for the girls, Classes mentioned before this time were not ecesaey in different rooms, as mentioned in the 1860s there were only 3 rooms in the school, one for boys one for girls and one for infants so some Classes were only segregated by a few feet.
31.12.89 The Rev George Frederick Eyes mother dies.

1890

22.10.90 Assistant Teacher Mr William Henry Hatton is appointed at these schools.
25.10.90 Assistant Teacher Mr Charles Herbert Field leaves the school.
06.02.90 Jane Doman the mother of the Rev John George Doman's mother dies aged 83.

1891

Girls Head Mistress Miss Betsy Fallows leaves St Marks.
Miss Alice Duckworth becomes the new Girls Head Mistress.
Mr George Grant starts his duties at the school as an Assistant Teacher.
Mr Joseph Bell starts his duties at the school as an Assistant Teacher.
Mr Ralph Ashcroft leaves St Marks

1892

Another extension for a Classroom is completed this year just off the small hall.
Mr Webster the Head of the boys school retires after twenty seven years service as also does the Head of the girls school Miss Alice Duckworth.
Also this year the boys and girls schools are joined together as a mixed school under one Headmaster, Mr Jabez Darricotte.

Miss Catherine Hawer joins the staff as Assistant Teacher this year.

Mr William Henry Hatton leaves the staff this year.

Mr James Tattersall leaves the staff this year.

Miss Sarah E. Dickinson joins the St Marks staff.

Aug 1892 the annual school sermons, the number walking this year is 1566.

1893

Infants Head Mistress Miss M Holmes leaves St Marks.

Miss Field joins the staff as the Infants Head Mistress.

25 year old Mr William Hodgkiss joins the staff, he stays for 31 years and 7 months.

Mr Charles Dickinson joins the St Marks staff.

Miss Mary Ellen Crook joins the St Marks staff.

Assistant Teacher Mr Joseph Bell leaves St Marks.

Mr Alfred Ainscow start his duties as an Assistant Teacher but leaves the same year.

A Fayre is held this year as in other years, the proceeds of these sales that were held yearly as well as other events enabled the church tower to be built. 

1894

Infant Head Mistress Miss Field leaves St Marks.

01.05.49 Miss Laura Leatham age 44 joins the staff as Head Mistress to the Infants.

17 years old Miss Catherine Hamer joins the staff at St Marks

1895

Richard Leeming Class of the 1880s marries Sarah Shepherd.

The Never Absent scheme began where pupils with 100% attendance were given the opportunity of having their photo taken others.

18.02.95 The school commenced giving free dinners to the poorer children.

1896

1897

1898

07.09.98 17 year old Miss Margaret Kirkman starts her duties as a Teacher at St Marks.

Curate Edwin Wolfe starts his duties at St Marks Church.

1899

The Church Tower Fund is started, the church at this time still has no tower, all kinds of events are arranged to raise money.
A Grand Conversazione for the Tower Fund is arranged for April 27th, 28th and 29th, tickets for sale at 1s each.
The people who buy the tickets will have a brick with their name on it. Many people saw a lot of these bricks on the street in 1973 when the church was demolished and wondered what the names meant.
Conversazione means 'local gathering'.

Later the congregation were invited to pay 1s 6d per brick or 2s for two, whereon their names would be inscribed and inserted in the tower as lasting memorials.

Miss Elizabeth Gratrix starts her duties as a Teacher this year.

Miss Aves begins teaching at St Marks.

see History of St Marks for years 1900-present or Head's Diaries for day to day running of St Marks

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