Former Llanrhos School

Former Llanrhos School

This school was built with an endowment of 1,000 guineas by Miss Frances Mostyn, of Bodysgallen Hall. It was for 40 boys and 40 girls, aged six to 12 years, from “poor and indiginent” families. A schoolmaster was appointed, on a salary of £30 per annum. Lessons covered reading and writing in Welsh and English, arithmetic and “other useful and moral and religious knowledge”.

Frances Mostyn wrote a list of “rules for my school” which make clear that the master must be a layman “professing the Religion of the Church of England – no Calvinist or Sectary whatever”. This excluded adherents to Nonconformism, then a rapidly growing movement in Wales.

The rules also state that “a woman shall be paid ten pounds a year” to teach the girls knitting and plain needlework. A cottage was provided at the end of the school building for her to live in.

In March 1846 the school was inspected for the Government’s inquiry into education in Wales which produced the notorious reports known as the “Blue Books”. The inspectors, Anglicans who spoke no Welsh, criticised not only the schools but also the morality of Wales’ people. The inspector who visited the Endowed Church School at Llanrhos found that it had a good building “though a little out of repair”, and lacked a fire despite the snow outside.

Of the 22 pupils present on the day, only three could read well. Of the 45 copies the inspector was shown, 40 “were wretchedly bad, and none were well written”. He commented: “Very few of the scholars could understand anything of English.”

The building ceased to be used as a school in 1898, becoming a church hall. In 2012 a £240,000 restoration scheme was completed, providing facilities for community groups and events. The original school bell was restored and re-hung.

With thanks for Fiona Richards, of the Deganwy History Group

Where is this HiPoint?

Postcode: LL30 1RW

Website of Llanrhos Old School