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West Norwood Schools

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#1 kwib


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Posted 22 August 2007 - 11:20 AM

I was hoping that the forum might be able to help me get a clear picture of the history of some of the schools in the area. I’ll write what snippets I have and it would be great if anyone could add some clarity:

Elmwood Primary School (or Elm Wood as it now seems to be known)
My old school seems to have a varied history and I am not sure of exact dates.
Originally it was Carnac Street Council Elementary School. I think that this was built in around 1912 by the London County Council. It later was renamed West Norwood Central Council Elementary School (in the 1920s I think although I am not sure). Later still, it became West Norwood Central Mixed School (on Carnac Street). When Kingsdale opened in 1958, most of the students apparently decamped to that new prestigious establisghment.
However, I have also heard that a lot of the girls went to the new Norwood School for Girls, at that time based on Gipsy Road, which was established in 1958.
Do people know any more specific dates? Was there a cross over period between West Norwood Central and Kingsdale/Norwood School for Girls, or did one shut and the others open? When did the name Elmwood come about? 1960 perhaps?
I have seen the name ‘Carnac Secondary School’. As well. Was this ever an official name?

Norwood School for Girls
This was established in 1958 and occupied the older buildings of the Gipsy Road School (built in the 1870s). Did it originally share these oremises with the primary school or did it take over completely? I know that Norwood Girls (as we called it) moved to Crown Dale in the 70s (or at least the upper years did) and that it wasn’t until the late 80s that it vacated the premises on Gipsy Road. I have seen the term ‘West Norwood Secondary Modern School for Girls’ as well. Was this an official name for the same school at some point?

Gipsy Road School/Norwood Park School
I am not talking about Salters Hill/Kingswood School on the corner of Gipsy Road and Salters Hill. Rather, I am talking about the school that is much further up, past the Gipsy Tavern, towards Elder Road. This school seems to have been through many incarnations. I was wondering if anyone knew how this progressed. It was Gipsy Road School as an Elementary. I know that it also housed the initial Norwood School for Girls (or West Norwood Secondary Modern for Girls perhaps). I believe that a primary school shared the premises during that period as well. After Norwood Girls moved to Crown Dale, was it at this point that it became Norwood Park Primary School? I understand from friends still in the area that even that has shut down but that there are plans for a new secondary school there.

Sorry for the long post. So many questions.

#2 HeadGardener



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Posted 22 August 2007 - 10:39 PM


I can only offer a few more snippets:

Carnac Street: My grandparents used to live in Clive Road. My uncle went to Carnac Street primary school in about 1930 and I'm pretty sure from my mother's anecdotes that it was called Carnac Street at the time (unless, I suppose, people continued to use the old name after the official name-change).

School at the end of Gipsy Road: Not long (I think) before I moved to Norwood in 1996, the school was closed because of falling pupil numbers in this end of the borough. Crown Lane primary school then used the site while its own building was demolished and rebuilt. The building's been empty since Crown Lane moved back to its own site but is going to be used as a temporary base for the new Elmgreen school, whose own building on Elmcourt Road isn't yet ready. I think Elmgreen takes its first pupils in September.

Hope this helps!

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Posted 23 August 2007 - 08:56 PM

Ooops! Seems I have been under a misapprehension for years.

Spoke to my mama today and it turns out that when my uncle went to Carnac Street it was an elementary school for 11 - 14 years old and it was therefore about 1935/6. However, my mother (whose memory for anything which happened in her youth is elephantine) is adamant that the school's name was Carnac Street.

#4 malcolmjanes



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Posted 13 November 2007 - 07:10 PM

I was born and brought up in Hamilton Road, West Norwood and moved to the other end, by West Norwood railway station in 1954, so I'd like to throw a little into the discussion.
The familly home was at the top end of Hamilton Road from before WW1. My mother went round the corner to the school in Gipsy Road juntion with Salters Hill. That would be approx. 1917-1926. That was her only school I think education finished at 14. It was a mixed school catering for the whole age range.
My older brother and I went there 1946 to 1954. It was still mixed and by that time catered for up to 11 year old children.
It was always known as Salters Hill School.

There was a new housing estate being built at that time on the Kingswood estate - along Gipsy Road past the Paxton public house and straight on down Alleyn Park Road? I have the belief that it was a comprehensive. We moved to the other end of Norwood at the time, and us two brothers were off to secondary school in Dulwich.

There was a school down the other end of Hamilton Road and was known as Carnac Street School. I thought it was a mixed school, 5 to 11 year old children.

Going along Gipsy Road towards Elder Road, just past the top of Auckland Hill, was a smallish school that I understood to be Gipsy Road School catering for 5 to 11 year olds.

I should know the name of the school in Crown Dale as my (late) wife went there from 5 to 11, but I regret that I don't