Enmore: Education

Page 44

A History of the County of Somerset: Volume 6, Andersfield, Cannington, and North Petherton Hundreds (Bridgwater and Neighbouring Parishes). Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1992.

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In 1676 a man was licensed to teach a grammar school. (fn. 1) Before 1810 there were a day and a Sunday school, where 35 to 40 children were taught to read and write and to do needlework, established by the rector John Poole, with Lord Egmont's support. Children of 3 or 4 years were taught to read and write and cast accounts using a sand table. Older children learnt grammar, mental arithmetic, and chronology and were taught to teach the younger pupils. Children attended school for seven hours a day and had a holiday every alternate Saturday and for a week at each of the three major feasts. (fn. 2) By 1819 the day school had 100 pupils and the Sunday school up to 60. (fn. 3) By 1835 these two schools had 49 and 44 children respectively, a second day school 18, and there were 16 attending a mixed boarding school begun in 1826. (fn. 4)

In 1846 there were 36 children at the Sunday school and 31 children at a dame school, and a National school was under construction. (fn. 5) It was finished in 1848, enlarged in 1888, and had 52 children on the books in 1903. (fn. 6) Numbers fell to 40 in 1935 but rose to 71 in 1975. In 1981 there were 51 children on the register. (fn. 7)

A boarding school for young children at Lexworthy between 1841 and 1861 may have been that begun in 1826. (fn. 8)


  • 1. S.R.O., D/D/Bs 42.
  • 2. Paupers and Pigkillers, ed. J. Ayres, 219; J. Poole, The Village School Improved (Oxford, 1815), passim.
  • 3. Educ. of Poor Digest, p. 782.
  • 4. Educ. Enq. Abstract, p. 805.
  • 5. Nat. Soc. Inquiry, 1846-7, Som. 8-9; S.R.O., DD/X/HEA, box 33; D/P/enm 18/1/1.
  • 6. S.R.O., C/E 4/380/161; Kelly's Dir. Som. (1889).
  • 7. S.R.O., C/E 4/64.
  • 8. P.R.O., HO 107/929; ibid. RG 9/1622; above, this section.