Victorian Powys for primary  schools
Powys Digital History Project
Knighton and district
Victorian school days
  Can't go to school today - cows in the road !  

The records of Llangynllo National School from 1894 include this head teacher's complaint about the local fairs...

20th December
School diary entry
Drawing by
Rob Davies

20th December - "Knighton 'Xmas Fair'. These fairs seem to seriously interfere with the attendance as many children go with their parents whilst others are kept at home to mind the house. 31 children absent today".

This earlier entry from the Log Book of Heyope National School shows that this school closed for the whole week for Knighton Fair in 1886...

Boys at  Xmas fair.
May 17th
to May 21st
School diary entry "Knighton Fair Week.
...No School".
  The Log Book of Knighton National Boys School from 1884 has an unusual entry on the day of a local livestock fair...  
2nd October
School diary entry "A Holiday. Fair. Road blocked up with Cattle".

Many market towns had cattle and horses loose in the main streets on market and fair days, and these could often be a danger for small children. Many schools closed or changed their times to take account of this.
All of the early schools had serious attendance problems. It took many years before parents and children accepted that schools were here to stay, and that going to school had to be seen as more important than going to the fairs, picking berries, or helping with the harvest.

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