The villages of Lockeridge and East Kennet had had their own primary schools, but by the late 80’s numbers started to fall and School Benchit came a
point where it was not possible to keep both open. In 1990 the schools were federated with the building in Lockeridge housing the Infant School (Reception, Year 1 and Year 2) along with the Bluebell Nursery and the East Kennet Site housing the Junior years (Years 3-6). Both sites managed by a single head teacher and governing body.
Over the intervening years, numbers started to pick up again. It was the vision of the head teacher and governors to bring both sites under one roof. To have all the children together.
The site in Lockeridge was chosen, and during academic year 2010/11, extra classrooms and meeting rooms were added to the Victorian building.
11th July 2011 saw the school children enter their new school for the first time. A short service was led in the playground by Rev’d Maria Shepherdson, before the Archdeacon, the Venerable John Wraw, blessed the new building.
The school continues to grow and thrive and now has around 100 children on roll.
History of the School 3
A Village Education, The History of the School at Lockeridge by Ruth Lamdin
Below are a few extracts from a book produced by Ruth Lamdin entitled ‘A Village Education: The History of the School at Lockeridge’.
How times have changed!
25 January 1875 – School opened under the headship of Miss Elizabeth Axton. She received a salary of £50 a year plus a furnished house. She wrote in the log book: 43 present. Children examined and found very ignorant.
November 1891 – This has been a heavy week of work, over 120 being in attendance and 72 sometimes in the Mixed Room. The want of a Class Room on such occasions is very much felt.
February 1895 – This has been an exceptionally cold week and the school fires in spite of careful building have not carried the Mixed Room a degree above freezing point except towards 4 o’clock. Children wrote with drawing pencils instead of pens as the ink remained frozen even in the desks before the fire.
Copies (£6) are available from Ruth.
firstname.lastname@example.org 01672 861550, 2 Forge Close, West Overton, Marlborough, SN8 4PG