History of Great Chesterford

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History of Great Chesterford >> Education in Great Chesterford

Education in Great Chesterford

Reports and returns on schools and education in Great Chesterford. These allow a glimpse into the education your ancestors may have received if they were from this parish.


"Population 650. A school, containing about 30 boys, the master of which has £25 4s. per annum; and a girls school, containing 52 children, the mistress receiving £25 both of which are on the national plan, and supported from the rent of certain lands (which are about to be increased), but at present amounting to £17 12s. per annum, and voluntary annual subscriptions. The funds are under the management of the master and fellows of Magdalen college Cambridge. Two Sunday schools, one for boys, containing from 40 to 50; and another for girls. The poor have means of education."

Source: Digest of Parochial Returns. Select Committee on Education of the Poor, 1818


"Population 873. One Infant School, containing 8 males and 16 females, whose instruction is paid for by their parents. Two Daily Schools: one whereof, a National School, containing 45 males and 55 females (who also attend on Sundays) is endowed with land and tenements of the annual value of £28 5s., and is further supported by subscription and weekly payment of 1d. from each child.

The head master observes, 'that this School was originally endowed (in the 16th century) with nearly 30 acres of land, by a Mr Hart, of Saffron Walden, for the boys of Great and Little Chesterford, the master to be always resident at Chesterford. The greatest possible mismanagement seems to have got into this institution during the 18th century, and all the lands, except 11 acres, were lost to the School, an Inclosure Act having since taken place, no possibility now remains of recovering, or even of ascertaining the land. During the time of the Incumbency of the present Bishop of London, the endowed and the National School, were incorporated, and girls as well as boys were admitted. By the will of the founder of the original School, the master was always to be appointed by the Master and Fellows of Magdalen College, Cambridge, the School being intended, apparently, for a Grammar School. This the College has almost always (always when possible) done, by appointing the Incumbent of the place, master. When the Schools were joined, a mistress was appointed, and a deputy schoolmaster, to whom the whole of the salaries; were given the head master deriving no benefit whatever."

"The present Incumbent having given up the mastership, the College was obliged to appoint a head master; no one in the parish was fit for it, and therefore, in 1830, H.L. Jones M.A., was appointed, the former deputy master and the mistress continuing as before. The present head master conies to Chesterford periodically; receives all the rents; makes all the payments, and is the responsible person. The children comprise nearly all in the parish capable of entering; a list of applicants is kept, and they are admitted according to seniority of application: this list usually contains five or six names of each sex. The children are taught reading, writing, and arithmetic; and the girls needlework in addition. In the other School 12 females are instructed at the expense of their parents."

Source: House of Commons papers, Volume 41. Abstract of Education Returns 1833

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Great Chesterford - Cary's New and Correct English Atlas, 1798

Great Chesterford - First Series Ordnance Survey Map 1805

This work is based on data provided through www.VisionofBritain.org.uk and uses historical material which is copyright of the Great Britain Historical GIS Project and the University of Portsmouth. Licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence BY-SA-4.0

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