Victorian Powys for primary  schools
Powys Digital History Project
Knighton and district
Victorian school days
  It's freezing in here, teacher !  

Going to school in Victorian times could be a very tough business. Many children had to walk several miles on rough tracks in very bad weather. And quite often in the winter, when they arrived, the schoolroom was as cold as it was outside !
Children often had to light the fire in the classroom themselves. The head of Knighton Infants School wrote in late October 1873 "Sent Alice Davies home for the morning as a punishment, for coming late to school and not having the fire lit". And this was an Infant's school !
These two entries are from the Log Book of Llangynllo National School in the winter of 1895...

Cold child at school
29th January
School diary entry
Drawings by
Rob Davies

8th February - "The weather continues very cold the thermometer stands now at 32 [degrees Fahrenheit] with a good fire in the room and the instrument is placed a long distance from the windows or any draught".

8th February
School diary entry

8th February - "The frost continues with great severity. The Ice in bowlthermometer stands now 12 o'clock at 28, two degrees below freezing. Some water which I placed in a dish in the room at the beginning of this a.m's [morning's] school has frozen".
Perhaps it was a useful lesson for the children on how water freezes - though they probaby already had a pretty good idea !

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