education in yeovil

south street national school

South Street


In 1856 Vickery wrote "A site has been purchased, and energetic measures taken, by the Rev JD Elliott, of Trinity Church, for the erection of Sunday and Infant Schools in South-street, for children residing in Trinity District."

The school was subsequently built as a Church of England Infant and Sunday School and opened in 1860. It was built in South Street, facing the junction of union Street and was intended for children of the Holy Trinity (Hendford) parish, it became Yeovil's second National School with accommodation for 190 children.

The Education Act 1870 made provision for voluntary bodies to transfer their schools to the School Boards should they so wish. Across the country this was seldom carried out but in Yeovil the National Schools at Huish and South Street were handed over to the Board by the Anglican authorities.

In the early 1890s W Mate wrote of the school "The South Street School consists of a Girls Department with first standard boys under Miss Patten and an Infants Department under Miss Warren. The Girls Department has always passed a very high percentage and is well-known as a thoroughly efficient school. The Infants Department gained special praise at the last examination for their kindergarten work."

The school buildings were demolished in 1965.




This photograph features in my book "Lost Yeovil"

Part of the South Street Schools photographed around 1880. The road elevation of the projecting wing seen at extreme left is visible in the photograph after next.


From the Stiby Collection (colourised). Courtesy of South Somerset District Council

South Street School photographed around 1890 by Henry Stiby.


From the Cave Collection (colourised), courtesy of South Somerset District Council

A photograph from the 1960s, just a few years before demolition, showing the location of the school opposite the Union Street junction seen at left. Notice that the roofline above the three windows at extreme right has been altered since the earlier photograph. Also the railings were removed during the Second World War for the national scrap metal scheme.


A view east along South Street from the junction with Penn Hill (at right). At centre is South Street School. Photographed around 1960.


Courtesy of Mrs Lilian Mash née Thorne

The South Street class of 1936, photographed by Rendell & Son. Many thanks to Mrs Lilian Mash née Thorne for supplying the following names - can anyone fill in the gaps?

Back Row, Left to Right: Mrs Ridgeway (Headmistress), unknown, Florrie Kingdom, Violet Kingdom, Nat Chislet, unknown, unknown, unknown.

Middle Row, Left to Right:  unknown, James Brown, unknown, Barbara Barry, Cyril Parker, Margaret Ridout, Lilian Thorne, Ruth Brown, Florrie Thorne, ? Chant.

Front Row, Left to Right: unknown, unknown, unknown, unknown, unknown, John Ford, Hazel Kingdom, ? Chant.