SCHOOL HISTORY - PRE-1920
R.B.Bessant -Headmaster 1836-61
Embroidered arithmetic from 1844
The Middle Street side of the school - 1905
There are more drawings and photos of the school pre-1920
Staff and pupils in the school 1895
Susan Back (seated on floor on left) was a student teacher
at Middle Street in the 1890s). Thanks to her grand-daughter Patricia Fleming
for the photograph.
An Infant class around 1902
Champion Boy Swimmers 1903
Class 3 in 1909
and Class 3A in 1909 (thanks to Steven Samuels)
Empire Day 1909
A class c.1910 courtesy Peter Guy whose father Charlie is
second from right in front row
Patricia Fleming (who was at Middle Street until 1939) has
provided us with her mother's school report from 1913
A Swimming Certificate from 1915
A Junior Scholarship certificate from 1917 (thanks to
Ninka Willcock). Interesting to see that the same design of certificate was
still in use in 1944 (here).
School report for Alfred
William Denman (1908-1967) - 1917. Thanks to his daughter Tina Brittain.
In 1918, John Cowper Powys
(the author of Wolf Solent, A Glastonbury Romance and many other works) visited
Middle Street School for a medical examination to determine if he was fit to be
conscripted into the First World War.
' Many a time had I
passed that particular infants' school without a suspicion that a day would come
when I should skip about naked as a frog within these walls while I was tested
for serving my Sovereign...but I was treated with extraordinary tenderness by
the military examiners at that Brighton infants' school.'
According to the 'John
Cowper Powys in Sussex' website - "Powys's account of his treatment is
confirmed by contemporary press reports which refer to the comfortable
furnishings and carpets provided and mention the many letters received praising
the courtesy and kindness of the staff."
to Main History Page
60s & 70s
80s & 90s