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Robert Street School.
Roberts Primary School, Roberts Street, Lower Gornal.
The original school building was erected in 1894 for a cost of £4,316, with a capacity for 250 boys and girls and 194 infants, the new infants school was needed to take on the overflow from Red Hall which was already overcrowded.
The master of the new school was Edwin Westwood; with Miss Agnes Price, mistress and Miss Mary Littlehales, infants mistress.
The school was extended in 1902 to accommodate 250 boys, 248 girls and 296 infants, the boys school was further enlarged in 1905 to accommodate 335.
Average attendance in 1901 was 245 boys, 225 girls and 192 infants. [Kelly's Directory]
The following is transcribed from the first entry in the School Log kept by the new headmaster Edwin Westwood.
Date of entry: September 18th, 1894.
"This school was opened today under the charge of E. Westwood.
IN THE PRECIOUS MEMORY OF
BELOVED WIFE AND DEVOTED HELPMEET OF
AND YOUNGER DAUGHTER OF THE LATE
EDWIN AND ELIZABETH ADDENBROOK
WHO PASSED AWAY FEB 29 1924
AGED 63 YEARS
"O LORD INTO THINE HAND COMMETH MY SPIRIT"
ALSO TO THE DEAR MEMORY OF EDWIN WESRWOOD
HUSBAND OF THE ABOVE
WHO DIED FEB. 15TH 1937 AGED 74
THEY ARE NOT DIVIDED IN DEATH
Edwin Westwood was born in Upper Gornal in 1863, the son of William and Catherine Westwood.
By the age of 18 he was already a pupil teacher possibly at one of the Upper Gornal schools,
On 28 July, 1891, he married Emma Maud Addenbrook at St. James Church, Lower Gornal,
Their children: Elsie and Clare b1892 appear to have been twins, however Clare died at an early age.
After his spell as master at Roberts Street School, Edwin moved to Redhall School.
Edwin died 15th February 1937 aged 74, he was buried at St. James', Lower Gornal.
Inspectors Report 1895, a page from the School Log a few months after opening the new school.
Staff in the 1894-1896 period included: Edwin Westwood, Headmaster; S. Murray, Assistant; S.J. Lane, Assistant; M. Parsons, Assistant; Mr. E. Jones, Assistant; Selina Jones, Pupil Teacher; A. Flavell, Pupil Teacher; Blanche M. Knight, Pupil Teacher; Amy Hopson, Monitress.
An entry in the 1895 School Log, stated that the School Board had decided that the summer holidays would commence from the last Monday in August for four weeks to take into account the hop-picking season in September, due to the high number of absentees during that period.
In 1904 the Staff included: Edwin Westwood, master; Miss Agnes Price, mistress; Miss Mary Littlehales, infants' mistress.[Kelly's Directory]
During the period 1912-1921, Joseph Westwood, previously master of Redhall School, swapped places with Edwin, Miss Mary Littlehales remained as mistress, and Miss Camm was in charge of the infants. [Kelly's Directory]
There does not appear to be any immediate family relationship between the two school masters.
Around 1924 Mr R.A. Wharton had become master and Littlehales and Camm were still in their posts.
This part of Roberts Street was mainly fields skirting Roberts Green Farm before the school was built.
Roberts Primary c1990s, from a painting by Colin T.Hale.
Secondary education ended in 1964 pending the opening of the new Ellowes Hall School.
Roberts celebrated it's Centenary in 1994, a special commemorative ceramic mug was issued to the pupils.
The school recently  celebrated 125 years of teaching the children of Gornal and surrounding districts.
The modern Buildings
The infant and junior school was totally rebuilt in 2000 on the site of the old school, the modern playing field overlying the old blackberry field.
Around 650 pupils attend the modern school.
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