Battisford Village School – 1873 to 1963
The Battisford Board School in Straight Road, Battisford, was erected in 1873 and the School Board was established on 14th July 1873. In 1891 the population of Battisford was 399 and the Board School was enlarged in 1892 to accommodate 117 children. The average attendance at that time was 91. The attendance was affected by illness, the weather and the agricultural calendar. Children were sometimes absent to help their parents on the farm. All the children walked to school, whatever the weather and distance.
The children were taught in two rooms, with a large central stove. They sat in rows according to age. In the early years the teacher was assisted by older children who had reached the required standard.
School Boards were public bodies in England and Wales between 1870 and 1902, which established and administered elementary education, which was not yet free. Board members were elected and had the power to pay the fees of the poorest children. The school boards were abolished by the Education Act 1902, which replaced them with Local Education Authorities.
Early Board members for Battisford Board school were Mr. S. Harwood (Chairman), Mr Lingwood (Vice Chairman), Mr Man and Mr Cooper. Mr Harwood remained on the Board until it was closed on May 30th 1903. Battisford Council School was established at a meeting on 30th June 1903. The Managers appointed were; Mr S. Harwood (Chairman), Mr. T. Harwood, Mr D. Dickerson, Mr. T. Nearn, Mr. J. Cooper and Mr. W. Baker.
The last meeting of the Council School managers on 26th February 1963 recorded 34 children enrolled (see photograph). The school was closed that summer and from September Battisford children traveled by bus to Combs Primary School on Hillside and then the current site. The population of Battisford that year was 427.