Cassington: Education

Page 53

A History of the County of Oxford: Volume 12, Wootton Hundred (South) Including Woodstock. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1990.

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William Plasterer, by will proved 1711, bequeathed £20 to teach poor children to read, and Henry Alnutt, by will dated 1724, left the residue of his estate at Goring to teach, clothe, and apprentice boys from Cassington and four other parishes. (fn. 87) There was a schoolmaster in Cassington by 1729, and throughout the 18th century a small school for four boys was maintained by Alnutt's charity. (fn. 88) The number of boys was increased to six c. 1824. (fn. 89)

By 1808 about 30 other children paid to attend the school, but in 1815 only 12 children, 8 boys and 4 girls, attended, and a further 12 attended another school. (fn. 90) In 1818 it was reported that the poor of the parish lacked sufficient means of education; there was only the charity school for four boys and a Sunday school for c. 80 children. (fn. 91) Before 1831 the vicar established a day school attended by 29 children, including 6 boys supported by Allnutt's charity and 2 girls by Plasterer's. (fn. 92) By 1833 the number of charity boys had been increased to 10, but total attendance had fallen to 20, compared with a total of 44 children attending the Sunday school. (fn. 93)

In 1853 a new school and master's house were built jointly by the parish, Christ Church, and the Alnutt trustees. The site, in the centre of the village, was given by the duke of Marlborough. (fn. 94) In 1854 the school was attended by 25-30 children in addition to the charity children; there was also a school for 15-20 children kept by a dissenter, presumably a Methodist, (fn. 95) but it was not recorded again. An evening school, supported by the vicar and the duke of Marlborough, was started in 1859 and in 1867 was attended by as many as 30 children who were taught reading, writing, geography, and scripture. (fn. 96)

The day school, described as a National school in 1866, received a parliamentary grant from 1867, when average attendance was 57 although there was accommodation for only 47. (fn. 97) In 1871 the school was still overcrowded; although accommodation had been increased to 62, average attendance was 69. (fn. 98) It was enlarged in 1876 for 84 children, but by 1890 the opening

of a school at Eynsham had reduced Cassington's numbers to 52. (fn. 99)

Cassington school was reorganized as a junior school in 1926, the older children going to Gosford Hill school in Kidlington. A new school was built in 1973, and in 1983 the roll was 69. (fn. 1)

The income from the Alnutt charity was 40s. throughout the 18th century, but had risen to £6 by 1825 as a result of the inclosure of Goring in 1809. In 1825 each of the six boys educated by the charity also received a suit of clothes at Easter and, if appropriate, an apprenticeship premium of £20. (fn. 2) The number of boys benefiting from the charity was increased to 10 c. 1833. (fn. 3) A Scheme of 1877 for all the Cassington charities provided that up to £40 might be used to pay or supplement the school fees of deserving children or for scholarships of up to £5 a year, and £20 might be spent on apprenticeships. In 1905 the educational charity was separated from the other Cassington charities; it then consisted of £10 a year to the school managers, £40 for scholarships, and up to 3 tons of coal for heating the school. (fn. 4)

About 1806 £3 was added to the capital of Plasterer's charity, but only 10s. of the income was used to educate one girl, the remainder being applied to other charitable purposes. (fn. 5) By 1831 20s. was being spent on the education of two girls. (fn. 6) In 1870 the capital was used for the repair of cottages belonging to Peachman's charity, and the educational charity was lost. (fn. 7)


  • 87. 1st Rep. Com. Char. 198; 12th Rep. Com. Char. 330; V.C.H. Oxon. i. 485.
  • 88. Secker's Visit. 34; O.R.O., Misc. Has. 11½; ibid. MSS. Oxf. Dioc. d 558, f. 105; d 561, f. 105.
  • 89. 8th Rep. Com. Char. 516; 12th Rep. Com. Char. 330.
  • 90. O.R.O., MSS. Oxf. Dioc. d 707, f. 35; c 433, f. 47.
  • 91. Educ. of Poor Digest, H.C. 224, p. 720 (1819), ix (2); O.R.O., MS. Oxf. Dioc. d 578, f. 47.
  • 92. O.R.O., MSS. Oxf. Dioc. b 38, f. 50; b 39, f. 72.
  • 93. Educ. Enq. Abstract, H.C. 62, p. 742 (1835), xlii.
  • 94. O.R.O., Allnutt 1/30; V/72-3, 76-8; ibid. MSS. Oxf. Dioc. c 1754; b 70, p. 52; Gardner's Dir. Oxon. (1852).
  • 95. Wilb. Visit. 28.
  • 96. P.R.O., ED 7/101/33; Rep. Com. on Children and Women in Agric. [4202-1], p. 336, H.C. (1868-9), xiii.
  • 97. Returns relating to Pars. H.C. 114, pp. 342-3 (1867-8), liii.
  • 98. Returns relating to Elem. Educ. H.C. 201, p. 322 (1871), Iv.
  • 99. Public Elem. Schs. H.C. 403, p. 213 (1890), lvi.
  • 1. Inf. from Oxon. C.C. Educ. Cttec.
  • 2. 8th Rep. Com. Char. 516, 522; 12th Rep. Com. Char. 330.
  • 3. Educ. Enq. Abstract, 742.
  • 4. Bodl. MS. Top. Oxon. d 512, p. 116; char. com. files; O.R.O., MS. d.d. Par. Cassington c 8, item c.
  • 5. 12th Rep. Com. Char. 330.
  • 6. O.R.O., MSS. Oxf. Dioc. b 38, f. 50; b 39, f. 72.
  • 7. Char. Digest, H.C. 292-11, pp. 14-15 (1871), lv.