Longhope Boarding School

There is sufficient evidence that a private boarding school once existed in the village. As early as 1851 there is recorded in the census of that year a Scottish family running a "classical school" in the village where a Mr. John Irving, 38, is listed as being the principle. Please see the 1851 census for further details from 1851.

In 1911 a newspaper article mentions the fact that two private schools existed in the village, i.e. Longhope Church of England School (below) and, presumably a boarding school.
A central school is more convenient for the majority of Longhope children for the centre of the population is nearer to the majority than the sides. The present two schools are as convenient for children of other parishes as those of its own.
The mention of Zion in the same article suggests that the county school located at Zion was yet to be built.
At present the day school accommodation of Longhope is inadequate and inconvenient, and imposes hardships on both children and parents. The ratepayers already know that this has to be remedied, for a new Council School must be built either at Zion or centrally.

Longhope Church of England School

Longhope C of E School
Longhope C of E School main entrance.
Longhope Church of England (C of E) School was unique in that it was built within the rectory grounds in 1829. More specifically, it was built on Glebe Land that was owned by the church.

An infant gallery was erected in the school room over the Christmas holidays of 1880 but on the children's return to school was found to be too narrow for the children to be able to sit comfortably and had to be altered.

By about 1905 the school comprised a single, large school room, a cloakroom and washing facilities. At one end was a large fire and grate. A green curtain separated the infants' class from the rest of the school. It was around this time also that it was soon replaced with a folding screen constructed from wood and glass. The fire was often inadequet and was not able to bring the school room to a reasonable temperature until midday.

Alterations were made to the school in 1911 as a plaque bearing the letters "C. E. Sch. 1911" (taken to mean Church of England School) exists high up in the wall of the building. The growing population of the village meant that the school room could no longer hold the amount of children wanting to attend school so was extended again in the 1930s when a couple of terrapins were put up.

Class one (formerly the canteen for those of us who remember it being so), situated closest to the rectory was originally a stable. The Rectory though is now a home for the elderly. A photograph of the school entrance, taken in 2001, is shown pictured on the left. As this was originally a Victorian school, the separate entrances for girls and boys are clearly visible on either side of the building, although they are no longer used as entrances.

Class 3 and orchard
Class three and orchard.
The everyday events of the school were well documented in the form of the school log book, as was required from 1862 [2]. The early sections are quite detailed with regards to when children were admitted to and left school along with reasons which were often because of work or because the parents moved to a different parish. A memo exists written by the headmistress of the school in 1881 to "complain of the practise of taking children from neighbouring parishes without a good & sufficient reason. 15 or 16 children are taken in at Huntley belonging to this parish" [1]. The log books are available in the Gloucester Records Office should anyone wish to view them.

Longhope School was not without its characters. On Monday 4th. March 1901 "the School was dismissed" owing to the "inexplicable absence of the Master" [1], who shall remain anonymous throughout. School commenced as usual the following day but under the supervision of Rev. Barr, chairman of the managers who "gave the Religious Instruction until 9-40, when, having marked the Registers, he handed over the conduct of the School to Mr. George Hodges Humphreys, late Head Master of Colubrook Boys' School, Slough, Bucks ..." [1]. He was still absent on Wednesday until, on Thursday:
It transpires that ... has been off 'on the drink' - he left the parish on Monday morning, + did not return to his home until after midnight on Tuesday - actually Wednesday - a.m. Although he was home all day yesterday (Wednesday) neither he, nor his wife (the Mistress), reported the fact [1].
Later that day, after receiving two letters from the headmaster explaining his conduct and whereabouts the managers held a meeting and
not considering these letters a satisfactory explanation of ... absence, or excuse for his abominable conduct, which unfortunately is known, + freely discussed, throughout the parish; + also having regard to the prejudicial influence of such conduct on the School, unanimously agreed, + decided, that they could not condone such offence by reinstating ... in the Mastership of the School; and further that his conduct should be brought under the notice of H. M. Inspector; + also the Secretary of the education department [1].
Unlike nowadays when schools are closed at the smallest speck of snow, Longhope C of E School was only closed when the snow became so bad that it meant that the children were unable to walk to school. It was often the case during heavy snowfall that the younger children could not attend while the older ones could.

The school was well known for its quality and success rates in the national Key Stage 2 Test. Sadly though, Longhope School closed in June 2003 to make way for the opening of Hope Brook School in the centre of the village which will accommodate children from both the existing schools.

The Nature Garden

The Nature Garden
The Nature Garden
Longhope School's Nature Garden was founded by Jean Hawkins at the start of the 1990s and was situated in the shade of the lower parts of the orchard. It was intended to allow pupils to learn more about nature, including plant and pond life. A picture of the Nature Garden is shown in the photograph on the left.

Recent Pictures

The main school building in June 2007 A building of such importance for decades has been left to fall into ruins and become overgrown with weeds and a variety of other thriving plant life. We photographed the current state of the school in June 2007 and some of the pictures are displayed here. The "Little Playground", so called because it was much smaller than the "Big Playground", was sandwiched between the main school building and the toilet block. It now hosts a large selection of plant life, including several buddleias. The small playground

Statistics and Lists


Hopes Hill County Primary School

Hopes Hill CP School The history of Hopes Hill CP School is currently being researched.


  1. Private documents [02 (1874-1911)]
  2. Kathy Chater, "How to Trace your Family Tree in England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales", Hermes House, 2005.

Related Information

Gloucestershire Records Office - the website of the Gloucestershire Records Office

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