Webpage created: July 15, 2017
Webpage updated: March 24, 2021
CATTEDOWN ROAD BOARD SCHOOLS
The Cattedown Road Board Schools actually fronted on to Saint John's Road at Cattedown.
The building was erected in the autumn of 1886 and was designed by Mr H J Snell of Courtenay Street, Plymouth. It was built by Mr Trevena of Pomphlete (sic) limestone with quoins of grey Cattedown limestone and red brick dressings around the windows and doors. The site had been purchased from the estate of a Mr Little for £2,000 and the building cost about £4,000. When completed it was intended to accommodate 1,200 children. However, when it was opened by the Mayor of Plymouth on the evening of January 12th 1887, it could take only 300 boys and girls and 300 infants.
On the ground floor was the infants' department, with a school-room measuring 66 feet in length and 22 feet in width. There were four classrooms 21 feet square by 14 feet high plus two rooms for the teachers. The girls' school was on the first floor and was laid out exactly the same as the infants except that it had in addition two sets of lavatories with separate access. All the classrooms were fitted with dual desks. There were separate playgrounds, each provided with a shed for wet weather.
Opening of Block 2
Block two was built in 1890 to hold 458 boys and 585 infants. The site was enclosed by a high wall in which there were four stone-arched entrances. two for the boys and one each for the girls and infants. This second block was officially opened by the Mayor of Plymouth, Mr J T Bond, on the evening of Friday October 2nd 1891 and was brought into use the following Monday.
The original mistress of the girls' school was Miss Mary Bartlett while the infants were in the charge of Miss Alice Harris. When the additional block was in use the infants were looked after by Miss E Cole and the boys by Mr William Henry Watmough BA.
On the morning of Wednesday April 8th 1903 the staff and scholars gathered to present Miss Bartlett with a valuable silver spirit kettle in appreciation of their esteem and love for her as she was leaving to become Headmistress of the new Salisbury Road Girls' School.
Following the transfer of the responsibility for education to the Plymouth Education Authority, it became Cattedown Road Elementary School.