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Allesley Hall School

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Harrier
Coventry
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1 of 25  Wed 10th Oct 2012 6:52pm  
Member: Joined Apr 2012  Total posts:148

From 1848 to 1886, the building in Allesley Park was used as a boys boarding school. The headmaster was Thomas Whyles (?his wife Anne nee Ford??) The school was endowed. Anyone any information about the head, his wife, the school or what happens to an endowment? I have tried local studies etc. but have found nothing - looking in the wrong place probably? The school building was demolished in 1908. There are a couple of pictures in the books on Allesley but that is about all!!
Allesley Hall School
Rob Orland
Historic Coventry
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2 of 25  Thu 11th Oct 2012 9:54pm  
Webmaster: Joined Jan 2010  Total posts:1133

I hope you're ready for this Harrier, I have a thing or three for you! Thumbs up By sheer coincidence, not long after I'd begun the Historic Coventry site, a lady named Mary Keller from Illinois made regular contact with me because of her Coventry roots. Her family had moved to the States a couple of generations before her, but she was particularly proud of her great-great-grandfather..... a certain Thomas Wyles, headmaster and founder of Allesley Hall School. Mary knew that Thomas had ended his days at Buxton, being buried in Burbage, although she didn't know where that was at the time and had never located his resting place. So, one day back in September 2002, I decided that we'd have a family day out.... to Burbage! It took us ages to find his gravestone, and we ended up seeking the help of the vicar who had a super large ancient graveyard plan. We eventually found the reason that we'd not spotted it at first..... a tree had grown over it! After clearing a few branches back, you can see it half hidden near the right of this photo.... Once uncovered, we discovered that his wife Ann was buried with him, plus, sadly, his daughter Eleanor, who died young after a fall.... Both stones together.... Shortly after this, Mary sent me a bit of information that she'd gathered about her g-g-granddad, so if you've got a bit of spare time on your hands and a large computer screen, please read on.... A letter was sent to her from a researcher saying this about Thomas:
The information points to the fact Thomas was not just the headmaster, but the innovator of what became known as "Allesley Hall College for boys". According to records he started the school in 1848. It was named as the "Midland School". There was a name change in 1858 to "Allesley Park College" for young boys, of which Thomas was headmaster and director. The College closed down in 1886, although Thomas remained as a sitting tenant until 1888 when he left and went to Buxton in Derbyshire. An article published in "The Times" states, quote. Thomas Wyles (FGS) of Allesley Park College has resigned his position as President of the Coventry Temperance Society consequent to his removal to Buxton College. Mr TG Beamish has been chosen to fill the position vacated. Thomas would have been quite elderly when he moved to Buxton.
Now for a couple of old photos (c1870) showing the front and back of Allesley Hall.... And now for a few pages of their school curriculum.... I hope you're taking notes - you'll be tested on it at the end of term!!! Lol Best wishes, Rob
Allesley Hall School
Rob Orland
Historic Coventry
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3 of 25  Fri 12th Oct 2012 7:37am  
Webmaster: Joined Jan 2010  Total posts:1133

I forgot something in that last post (surprised?).... another photo - or rather a poor photocopy of a photo - of Thomas Wyles - the white bearded chap on the right....
Allesley Hall School
TonyS
Coventry
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4 of 25  Fri 12th Oct 2012 8:38am  
Moderator: Joined Jan 2011  Total posts:1547

I reckon Rob's first post above must get the prize for the forum's longest post! Cheers
Allesley Hall School
Chaingang
Tile Hill Village
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5 of 25  Fri 12th Oct 2012 9:11am  
Member: Joined Oct 2011  Total posts:59

Not only that, it must be one of the most interesting.
adopted coventry

Allesley Hall School
Foxcote
Warwick
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6 of 25  Fri 12th Oct 2012 9:30am  
Member: Joined Jan 2012  Total posts:920

I agree, backed up with all the photographs made it so interesting. Thanks. By chance, I found T. Wyles' death notice in the papers and it mentioned that before Allesley, he was the 'conductor' of The Midland School, Primrose HIll. I looked further and Hillfields first school in the area was located within Primrose Hill House which had been converted to serve as a school, this closed in 1837 but was re-opened as a boarding school in 1848 by Rev. Gilbert and T. Wyles. Primrose Hill House
Allesley Hall School
mick
coventry
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7 of 25  Fri 12th Oct 2012 2:55pm  
Member: Joined Sep 2012  Total posts:74

This is fascinating. I had an involvement with Allesley Hall for many years - and before work started on its present use I even met the old Lord Leigh at the Hall as he had wanted to show his grandchildren before it was altered. The vestiges of the previous house are visible in the cellars but I had always understood that the previous house was fairly modest and little more than a farm. This is clearly not true from the pictures and it therefore makes me wonder why the Iliffe family knocked it down. The Iliffe family apparently had lived on Tamworth Road before building the current house. Lord Iliffe told me that his earliest memory was having tea on the lawn in 1914 when they received a phone call ! to say war had been declared. There was apparently much trepidation because his father was playing tennis in Dover.
Allesley Hall School
Foxcote
Warwick
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8 of 25  Fri 12th Oct 2012 3:38pm  
Member: Joined Jan 2012  Total posts:920

There's some detail of the history of the original hall on this link.
Allesley Hall School
Dreamtime
Perth Western Australia
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9 of 25  Fri 12th Oct 2012 4:43pm  
Member: Joined Jan 2010  Total posts:2922

Interesting link Foxcote. As I recall it was probably during the early 60's when we could walk freely through the grounds on a few occasions and my daughter always made for the goldfish pond which was covered over with wire netting for protection. Being nosey and looking in the windows and finding the place empty and desolate. I guess that was when the parks dept., had taken it over. I think the more recent building had more character than the original one. Wave
Allesley Hall School
heritage
Bedworth
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10 of 25  Fri 12th Oct 2012 8:26pm  
Member: Joined Sep 2011  Total posts:374

Superb piece from Rob. I have done some research on all the schools in the village but this puts my bits and pieces in the shade. With my Allesley connections I have always been interested in the hall. Around 1920 one of my father's brothers delivered newspapers to the hall every day. After the newspapers were delivered he then went to Lady Iliffe's house in the village to clean the families' shoes. This was before he attended the village school, hard work but money was short. At the time the family lived up the jetty opposite the Rainbow. What always stands out in my mind was the dovecote, to a small boy in the late 1940s it was huge and fascinating that the birds all lived happily together.
Allesley Hall School
Rob Orland
Historic Coventry
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11 of 25  Fri 12th Oct 2012 9:56pm  
Webmaster: Joined Jan 2010  Total posts:1133

You're all very kind thank you - I'm so glad you've enjoyed reading about the old school. You musn't give me too much credit though - virtually all the information was supplied by others - my main contribution being to enjoy a family day out in a lovely part of the country to find and photograph Thomas' grave! Many thanks to all who have added yet more fascinating information. I'm sure Harrier, who posted the original enquiry, will really appreciate all the interest and efforts. Cheers
Allesley Hall School
Foxcote
Warwick
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12 of 25  Fri 12th Oct 2012 10:01pm  
Member: Joined Jan 2012  Total posts:920

The Dovecote
Allesley Hall School
Chaingang
Tile Hill Village
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13 of 25  Fri 12th Oct 2012 11:47pm  
Member: Joined Oct 2011  Total posts:59

I found the history of Allesley Hall very interesting. I was always given to understand that the house was crenulated before it was modified by Iliffe, so much for hearsay. As a teenager I used to work weekends on a farm in Staircase Lane to earn some pocket money, as I lived in Wildcroft Rd, my route home was down past the Stone House, across the front of Allesley Hall then across the fields that are now the Allesley Park Estate.
adopted coventry

Allesley Hall School
Foxcote
Warwick
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14 of 25  Sat 13th Oct 2012 7:11am  
Member: Joined Jan 2012  Total posts:920

I found the original owner Thomas Flynt and his biography and the building of the Hall - Thomas Flynt It's all a learning curve 'cos the Parliament site that I never knew of is a winner.
Allesley Hall School
Dreamtime
Perth Western Australia
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15 of 25  Sat 13th Oct 2012 2:39pm  
Member: Joined Jan 2010  Total posts:2922

A very good read this one Rob, thank you. Being a teacher herself, my daughter found your post more than interesting. How times have changed. The most interesting part was how high on the list education was to even the youngest child and the high standards required for teaching. Thumbs up
Allesley Hall School

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