Dashwood Mysteries

Can you help solve these puzzles from the archive?

The missing school entrance

The girls’ entrance shown in around 1902 when the school opened.

I hoped the plasterboard hid the old girls' entrance.
1902 Girls entrance pic close
2008 Aerial view modern

Thursday 17th November 2011 – On my visit to the Dashwood site, currently under redevelopment, I was surprised not to be able to see the old girls’ entrance to the school. I had always thought it was obscured by the infill build between the infant and main school, but even with all that removed, I couldn’t see it.

The site manager, Vinny Franklin, speculated that it might still be hidden beneath the plasterboard shown in the picture.

I will try to confirm where the entrance was from the school’s original plans, but in the mean time, if anyone can shed light, please get in touch!

UPDATE Tuesday 22 November 2011 – I have now looked at a 1902 photo of the school from the archive – a picture we could not squeeze into the book. It shows the original girls’ entrance in a wall joining the main school with the infants’ school building –  see the photo, and close-up.

So when was the original girls’ entrance demolished? We don’t have a definite answer, but we can make some educated guesses.

  • In the early 1960s, the Local Education Authority funded indoor toilets for the first time, fitted inside new additions to the playground side of the school (near the boys’ entrance)
  • It’s very likely that the modern addition between the main and infants’ school was added at the same time
  • This infill area was also used to provide indoor toilets, as it was up until the school closed. A plan from 1982 shows the layout
  • We can see the former location of the cisterns in a current photograph!

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