The story of our
Miss Mary Cross
This is Mary Cross. In
1890 she gave £1,000 to help 'deaf and dumb' children of Preston and
district. Then she gave another £5,000 to build a school.
Mary Cross died before the
school was opened.
The foundation stone from the old
|The foundation stone of
The Cross Deaf and Dumb School
was laid on October 1st 1892 by the Earl
From the Head's Log Book
28.7.94 Formal opening of the
Cross Deaf + Dumb School by the Earl of Derby....
The Cross Deaf and Dumb
was opened on July 28th 1894 by the Earl
The school started with 16
The first headmaster was called
J G Shaw. He was head for 28 years until 1922.
From the Head's
Log Book (8.5.1897)
received from Her Majesty the Queen to prefix the title
"Royal" to the name of the school, which is henceforth to be
called "The Royal Cross School for the Deaf".
May 1897 Queen Victoria gave the school the title 'Royal'.
The new name was
'The Royal Cross School
for the Deaf'.
The old school
building, Brockholes Brow, Preston
|The Rawstorne family gave the
school £8,500. A big hall with 8 classrooms around it were
built. A hospital wing and dormitory were built. They bought
more land. The grounds
and playing field were extended from 5 to 9 acres. The hall was
called The Rawstorne Hall. They were opened on 29 July 1899
by the Countess of Derby.
From the Head's
Log Book (26.2.1904)
26.2.04 A school
library containing 900 volumes (including teachers' reference books)
was publically opened here yesterday by the rt. Rev. Bishop Thornton,
as a memorial to the late Archdeacon Rawstone. there is Reading
room accommodation for 15 pupils, and the boys & girls will be
allowed to use it in turn daily throughout the year, as well as being
allowed to borrow books.
|In 1904 a new library was
Extract from a copy of a letter
from The Royal Cross School for the Deaf 12th July 1946
...the school received a letter
from the Ministry of Education from which this is an extract:-
Min. of Education, Ref:-
M.586(1)/4 - Sept. 1945
Minister.....hopes that the Managers of the Royal Cross School fro
the Deaf, Preston,...will give immediate consideration to the
question of providing immediate consideration to the question of
providing additional accommodation to meet urgent needs. It
is suggested...provision should be made for some 50 - 60 extra
In 1945 the Minister of
Education asked Royal Cross School for the Deaf to take 50 -60
The school bought Ribby Hall on
the Preston-Blackpool Road on 1st July 1946.
Ribby Hall was opened
in 1948 when building alterations were finished.
It started with a group of boys
aged 9 to 11.
Extract from the Board of Management Report for the year 1948-49
"the increase in numbers is creating new
problems for the Board, who are particularly concerned with the
care and education of the very young children aged from 3 to 6
years, who are coming to the School, and the Board will probably
now have to consider the formation of some special Infants School
so as to provide for the special needs of the very young
In July 1951 Wilmar Lodge, Blackburn was
bought. It was a nursery school for 3-5 year olds.
Planned alterations to the
school in Preston January 1963
The school planned to close Ribby
Hall and Wilmar Lodge.
At the Preston school,
Hall was pulled down. Residential hostels, a nursery, gym,
dining hall, kitchen, assembly hall and swimming pool were built.
Aerial photograph after building
|Work was finished in 1966.
The Royal Cross School for the
Deaf School Magazine
Wilmar Lodge property was sold...We would like to pay a special
tribute to all those connected with the Infant School during the
seventeen years of its existence...'
ahs been a Branch School since 1947, and over 300 pupils have
passed through its doors during those 22 years......We shall miss
the beautiful Ribby grounds...The time has come to say "Good
bye" to Ribby Hall as a school.'
Wilmar Lodge closed in 1968. The children
moved to the new nursery called Wilmar House.
Ribby Hall closed in 1969.
Newsletter July 1990
"...In September 1990 the
new school the Royal Cross Primary School will open in Lea."
Evening Post, Monday September
pupils will attend a new unit at Ashton High School and the new
royal Cross Primary School for the Deaf will cater for pupils aged
three to 11...
In January, we
will be opening a language disordered unit for hearing children...
In 1990 the old
residential school closed.
A new primary
school opened in Ashton. It is a day school. The oldest pupils are 11
secondary aged children from Royal Cross School went to Ashton
The name changed
Royal Cross Primary School for Deaf
RCPS Newsletter October 1997
'The building alterations were
just about completed over the summer break...The alterations have
made a real difference...We now have a lot more storage space and
can move around the school without interrupting neighbouring
classes. Its great!...'
work. A corridor is made through the school. A new
library, medical room and waiting area is built. More
storage areas are built.
Make a timeline.
to Sources of Evidence