ST PAUL'S SCHOOL - Reminiscences

See also Jack Isherwood memories


  From  Jack Holden…..I attended St Pauls School from 1933-35 (see photo). Primary School- Miss Whittaker, Miss Hassall and Miss Shaw. Junior School – Mr Price, Mr Lindley, Mrs West, Mrs Cook, Mrs Metcalfe.  My sister Marie attended between 1945 and 1949 under Miss Hassall and Miss Cook.

  From Alan Richardson…..St Paul’s School was used for all sorts of things over the years, Plays, Pantomimes, Parties, Dances, Local Elections, Talks, etc



St Paul’s School  during the 1980s

Interviewee - Anthony Ashworth      Born 1978           Current resident 22 Crow Lane. 

St Paul’s School.

             I came to this school . from being four year old. .

Mrs Chamberlain, the existing headmistress was here then, she’d been here a couple of years then, she had just started a year.  Let me think, Mrs Martin, there’s another existing teacher, I think, that’s still here.  I think they were all female teachers when I was here, bar one man.  There was Mrs Ramsden [I think it was] one of the other teachers that was here.  Mrs Isherwood.  They were the main four, if you were – there were a couple of others that used to stand in but they are the main four teachers that used to be in years one, two, three and four, the infants and reception class.

When I was here in the school there were roughly between 80 and 90 pupils. This school actually took between 80 and 90.  There was 84 when I left. I remember that.  There was 84 pupils.

All the partitions that separate these three classrooms and the assembly hall, what was the assembly hall,  all this all moves and they are all on runners. They are actually sealed up but from the back here one panel moves in at a time and they just all collect at the back.  You will see all the runners at the bottom classroom, which will make this, all this, into one big open room.

So it was when you were here, it was one open room was it?

Well they were using these, they still had these, but neighbours say they don’t use them.  I’ve never seen them actually opened.  They did move them to do renovations on it and to clean it all up but they keep these partitions in all the time to keep the classrooms separated off.

When you were here (at this school)  you lived on Crow Lane did you?


Did you actually go home for your dinner?

No, I used to stay in and used to have school dinners. They were good enough for eating, you know.  They were all right there.  So we used to stop in.  That was the  dining hall as well then. This was the dining hall outside here, and in the old plans of the school they had a stage at the back of there, and that was like, that big classroom there, was just a partitioned wall and the rest of the hall was used as a dining room with tables and chairs in it

            It’s closing now?

            It’s closing this year, yes, the end of this term.

What do you think about that?

Its upsetting really, it is, because, like I say, I’ve known Margaret from a very early age. I mean if she weren’t a good headmistress she wouldn’t still be here today would she?  And the school, like I say, you can ask anybody who’s been here, or who’s actually been in the actual school itself, even people as old as 80’s, 90’s can remember coming to this school they’ll tell you how…..  I think the school, it closes, in the end the community round here you know, like there’s St Paul’s, there’s St Andrew’s, there’s St Joseph’s, there’s Peel Brow, but for like Ramsbottom centre, central Ramsbottom and the people who lived here, I think this is like a big central…..

Like a focus point?

Like a focus point, yes. I mean a lot of people would be, you know, upset that the school was shut.  I mean there’s memories for me in this school you know.  There’s memories for a lot of people who came here, like the teacher that was teaching us when we left, unfortunately died not so long back, I think it was about 1999 – no it weren’t, 1997 or 96 something like that..  The teacher who actually taught us, she had a brain haemorrhage I think and died.  

But I left the school just before it had all the recent renovations at the back here, before it was actually pulled down and made smaller. You know they concentrated it a lot smaller and did some structural work and that’s when I left just before then in 1989.

People were saying the central heating was here when they were here in the 30’s

Yes, well that was one of the early 1900 heating systems, paraffin heating systems, that were installed in here.  And then the big back boiler at the back, I remember that, having to fire that up, when it went cold, I mean it did go cold, I mean you’re talking wooden floors, you’re talking…. Oh it were freezing.  You used to get cold in here, at times, yes.