Middle Row School

School in/near Kensal Town, existing between 1878 and now

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School · Kensal Town · W10 ·
July
2
2015

Middle Row School was established in the late 19th century to provide education to the children of Kensal New Town.

Middle Row School
Kensal New Town was a 19th century greenfield development of terraced workers housing sandwiched between the Grand Junction (now Union} Canal and the Great Western Railway, next to the Western Gas Company Gas Works.

The first schooling for the new settlement was provided by the church of St John's, Kensal Green (built in 1845. north of the Canal). St John's School was erected close to the church in 1850. and it was here that any child from Kensal New Town who wished to receive an education would have attended. There was also an early Ragged School in Kensal Road adjacent to the Canal where poorer children may have received a rudimentary education.

The passing of the 1870 Education Act brought about fundamental changes in British education, as the state started to replace the church as the main source of elementary education. From 1880 education became compulsory until the age often or when a certain standard of education was achieved, and by 1899 the minimum school leaving age had risen to twelve. In the capital the School Board for London was established to provide this education.

it was in this context that in 1877, an application was made to the Chelsea Vestry "to build a School House and premises. to be known as 'Middle Row Schools. Kensal Road’ by Messrs. Hook & Oldrey, builders of Cowley Wharf, Kensal Road. on behalf ofthe School Board for London."

At this time there was already a ‘temporary’ Middle Row School operating on or close to the present site.’ By February 1878 the school was ‘now being built’ and the official opening took place on the 19 August 1878. There were separate boys', a girls' and infants’ departments, and a total of eight teachers.

The new school was erected south of the Methodist Chapel in Middle Row. A number of houses had to be demolished to clear the site. The school was almost immediately enlarged in 1879 by the original builders.

No buildings from 1879 survive. and the design of the main building is not entirely clear. However. an outline plan survives, as was well as a section through the front of the building that indicates that at least the range fronting Middle Row was three storeys in height.

In the 1890s its pupils had suffered terrible health problems, including epidemics of scarlet fever, diphtheria and smallpox. Free lunches and breakfasts were often provided for the hungry children and many suffered from damaged eyesight.

The school was described as overcrowded in 1897 and major structural alterations to all three of the departments were undertaken to create divisions in the classrooms and to improve heating and lighting.

In 1B93~9 the Girls’ and Infants‘ schools were enlarged by the building of temporary iron buildings. It appears however that these remedies weren't enough, as new building was being planned by 1901 when the School Board for London purchased a plot of land south of the school. It was on this site that a new Junior Mixed School opened in 1904. This was the year that the School Board was abolished and its responsibilities transferred to the new London County Council.

Clearance of house and light-industrial buildings on the site began in 1902. By 1903, some of the pupils at the school were in ‘temporary iron buildings' and by May 1904 the new junior mixed school had opened in a ‘bungalow building'. It was built to accommodate 422 pupils.

The "Boat House" was created in 1913, the Main Building in 1914-15 and a Caretaker's House in 1930.

In 1957, the 1904 block was described as 'containing a central hall with eight classrooms off it, a medical room and rooms for the headmistress and staff'. It has 'recently been redecorated in a variety of gay colours'. At the date there were 169 children at the school, significantly less than the number is was designed to accommodate.

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Middle Row School
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Ian Gammons
Ian Gammons   
Added: 3 Apr 2018 08:08 GMT   
IP: 81.131.100.203
2:1:3405
Post by Ian Gammons: Pamber Street, W10

Born in Pamber Street but moved to Harlow, Essex in 1958 when I was three years old. The air wasn?t clean in London and we had to move to cleaner air in Harlow - a new town with very clean air!


Vallie Webster
Vallie Webster   
Added: 16 Mar 2018 03:39 GMT   
IP: 142.114.172.35
2:2:3405
Post by Vallie Webster: Tunis Road, W12

I visited my grandmother who lived on Tunis Road from Canada in approximately 1967-68. I remember the Rag and Bone man who came down the road with a horse and milk delivered to the door with cream on the top. I also remember having to use an outhouse in the back of the row house. No indoor plumbing. We had to have a bath in a big metal tub (like a horse trough) in the middle of the kitchen filled with boiled water on the stove. Very different from Canada. My moms madin name was Hardcastle. Interesting to see the maps. Google maps also brings the world closer.


Norman Norrington
Norman Norrington   
Added: 19 Jan 2018 14:49 GMT   
IP: 90.194.159.199
2:3:3405
Post by Norman Norrington: Blechynden Street, W10

In the photo of Blechynden St on the right hand side the young man in the doorway could be me. That is the doorway of 40 Blechynden St.

I lived there with My Mum Eileen and Dad Bert and Brothers Ron & Peter. I was Born in Du Cane Rd Hosp. Now Hammersmith Hosp.

Left there with my Wife Margaret and Daughter Helen and moved to Stevenage. Mum and Dad are sadly gone.

I now live on my own in Bedfordshire, Ron in Willesden and Pete in Hayling Island.

Have many happy memories of the area and go back 3/4 times a year now 75 but it pulls back me still.

Paul Shepherd
Paul Shepherd   
Added: 16 Jan 2018 15:21 GMT   
IP: 90.255.234.91
2:4:3405
Post by Paul Shepherd: Chamberlayne Road, NW10

i lived in Rainham Rd in the 1960?s. my best friends were John McCollough and Rosalind Beevor. it was a good time to be there but local schools were not good and i got out before it went to a real slum. i gather it?s ok now.

Mary Harris
Mary Harris   
Added: 19 Dec 2017 17:12 GMT   
IP: 217.63.194.106
2:5:3405
Post by Mary Harris: 31 Princedale Road, W11

John and I were married in 1960 and we bought, or rather acquired a mortgage on 31 Princedale Road in 1961 for £5,760 plus another two thousand for updating plumbing and wiring, and installing central heating, a condition of our mortgage. It was the top of what we could afford.

We chose the neighbourhood by putting a compass point on John’s office in the City and drawing a reasonable travelling circle round it because we didn’t want him to commute. I had recently returned from university in Nigeria, where I was the only white undergraduate and where I had read a lot of African history in addition to the subject I was studying, and John was still recovering from being a prisoner-of-war of the Japanese in the Far East in WW2. This is why we rejected advice from all sorts of people not to move into an area where there had so recently bee

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Maria Russ
Maria Russ   
Added: 7 Dec 2017 09:46 GMT   
IP: 47.72.255.177
2:6:3405
Post by Maria Russ: Middle Row Bus Garage

My mum worked as a Clippie out from Middle Row Bus Garage and was conductress to George Marsh Driver. They travel the City and out to Ruislip and Acton duiring the 1950’s and 1960’s. We moved to Langley and she joined Windsor Bus Garage and was on the Greenline buses after that. It was a real family of workers from Middle Row and it formed a part of my early years in London. I now live in New Zealand, but have happy memories of the early years of London Transport and Middle Row Garage.
Still have mum’s bus badge.

Happy times they were.

Julia elsdon
Julia elsdon   
Added: 22 Nov 2017 18:19 GMT   
IP: 87.112.95.228
2:7:3405
Post by Julia elsdon: Shirland Mews, W9

I didn’t come from Shirland Mews, but stayed there when my father was visiting friends, sometime in the mid to late forties. As I was only a very young child I don’t remember too much. I seem to think there were the old stables or garages with the living accommodation above. My Mother came from Malvern Road which I think was near Shirland Mews. I remember a little old shop which had a "milk cow outside". So I was told, it was attached to the front of the shop and you put some money in and the milk would be dispensed into your container. Not too sure if it was still in use then. Just wonder if anyone else remembers it.yz5

David Jones-Parry
David Jones-Parry   
Added: 3 Oct 2017 13:29 GMT   
IP: 81.156.41.30
2:8:3405
Post by David Jones-Parry: Tavistock Crescent, W11

I was born n bred at 25 Mc Gregor Rd in 1938 and lived there until I joined the Royal Navy in 1957. It was a very interesting time what with air raid shelters,bombed houses,water tanks all sorts of areas for little boys to collect scrap and sell them on.no questions asked.A very happy boyhood ,from there we could visit most areas of London by bus and tube and we did.

Debbie hobbs
Debbie hobbs    
Added: 19 Sep 2017 09:08 GMT   
IP: 92.40.89.28
2:9:3405
Post by Debbie hobbs : Raymede Street, W10

I SUPPLIED THE PICTURE ABOVE GIVEN TO TOM VAGUE TO PASS ON... ITS DATE IS C1906 ..IN THE DISTANCE IS RACKHAM STREET WITH ITS MISSION HALL, HEWER STREET TO THE RIGHT

Susan Wright
Susan Wright   
Added: 16 Sep 2017 22:42 GMT   
IP: 120.154.67.244
2:10:3405
Post by Susan Wright: Bramley Mews, W10

My Great Grandmother Ada Crowe was born in 9 Bramley Mews in 1876.

David Jones-Parry
David Jones-Parry   
Added: 7 Sep 2017 12:13 GMT   
IP: 86.152.78.135
2:11:3405
Post by David Jones-Parry: Mcgregor Road, W11

I lived at 25 Mc Gregor Rd from 1938 my birth until I joined the Royal Navy in 1957.Our house sided onto Ridgeways Laundry All Saints Rd. I had a happy boyhood living there

Brenda Jackson
Brenda Jackson   
Added: 13 Aug 2017 21:39 GMT   
IP: 94.13.78.193
2:12:3405
Post by Brenda Jackson: Granville Road, NW6

My Gt Gt grandparents lived at 83 Pembroke Road before it became Granville Road, They were married in 1874, John Tarrant and Maryann Tarrant nee Williamson.
Her brother George Samuel Williamson lived at 95 Pembroke Road with his fwife Emily and children in the 1881 Census

Apparently the extended family also lived for many years in Alpha Place, Canterbury Road, Peel Road,

LDNnews
LDNnews   
Added: 10 Nov 2019 16:27 GMT   
IP:
3:13:3405
Post by LDNnews: Aldwych
The Bayswater Rivulet was the original name for the Westbourne River
The Bayswater Rivulet was the original name for the Westbourne River

https://www.theundergroundmap.com/article.html?id=37054

VIEW THE KENSAL TOWN AREA IN THE 1750s
The 1750 Rocque map is bounded by Sudbury (NW), Snaresbrook (NE), Eltham (SE) and Hampton Court (SW).
Outside these bounds, the 1750 map does not display.

VIEW THE KENSAL TOWN AREA IN THE 1800s
The 1800 mapping is bounded by Stanmore (NW), Woodford (NE), Bromley (SE) and Hampton Court (SW).
Outside these bounds, the 1800 map does not display.

VIEW THE KENSAL TOWN AREA IN THE 1830s
The 1830 mapping is bounded by West Hampstead (NW), Hackney (NE), Greenwich (SE) and Chelsea (SW).
Outside these bounds, the 1830 map does not display.

VIEW THE KENSAL TOWN AREA IN THE 1860s
The 1860 mapping is bounded by Brent Cross (NW), Stratford (NE), Greenwich (SE) and Hammermith (SW).
Outside these bounds, the 1860 map does not display.

VIEW THE KENSAL TOWN AREA IN THE 1900s
The 1900 mapping covers all of the London area.

 

Kensal Town

Soapsuds Island

Kensal New Town was built between the Grand Central Canal (which opened in 1801) and the Great Western Railway line (opening in 1837) in the 1840s.

Single-storey cottages with gardens suitable for drying clothes were the first buildings and Kensal Road, Middle Row, West Row, East Row and Southern Row all appeared between 1841 and 1851. The rows of cottages quickly degenerated into a slum, mainly due to overcrowding, industrialisation and pollution.

The area was dominated by the Western Gas Company and Kensal Cemetery, which provided work but did little to improve the environment. Women were primarily involved in laundry work giving the area its nickname of ‘Soapsuds Island’.

The area was isolated from the rest of London at a time when Portobello Lane (now Portobello Road) was a muddy track sometimes impassable in bad weather.

Cut off from the municipal authorities it was left to charities to attempt to alleviate the social and health problems.

At the beginning of the 20th century, the cottage laundry industry began to be replaced by larger mechanized concerns.

In 1902 Charles Booth described it as, “Just as full of children and poverty as was the old woman’s dwelling in the nursery rhyme.” By this date the area had been transferred to the newly formed Royal Borough of Kensington. When the Piggeries and Potteries in Notting Dale were finally cleared in the early 20th century most of the displaced residents moved north into Golborne ward and Kensal.

By 1923 in the Southam Street area 140 houses contained some 2500 inhabitants. A series of evocative photographs by Roger Mayne in the 1950s showed that little had changed. It was only from the 1960s that the overcrowded and dilapidated terraces were cleared and replaced by social housing including Goldfinger’s Trellick Tower.
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