Victorian Powys for primary  schools
Powys Digital History Project
Llanwrtyd and district
Victorian school days
  Weather splendid, corn ripe, school empty...  
Drawing by
Rob Davies

The annual harvest took so many children away School diary entryfrom country schools that the summer holidays were called the 'Harvest holidays' for many years. As the harvest depended on the weather, so too did the school holiday ! This is from the diary of Garth School in 1893...

Boys haymaking
18th August
School diary entry "The weather is splendid and the corn ripe, so children are in the harvest field"...
  The Log Book of the same school for September 1894 reads - "Poor attendance, but corn is now gathered and it should improve at once". More reminders of the close link between the seasons and the numbers turning up for school lessons are shown below. These are also from Garth School Log Book...  
26th June
School diary entry
28th October
School diary entry

These two Log Book entries read -
26th June 1885 - "Attendance greatly reduced owing chiefly to this being the sheep-shearing season"...
28th October 1892 - "Attendance once more raised, potato digging being over for another year".
The teachers were not too happy about all these regular absences every year, but the extra help on the farm provided by the older children was very important when it was often a struggle to make a living from the land.

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