Goddard Carter of Alvescot, by will proved 1725, left a rent charge of £5
from lands in Brize Norton (Marsh Haddon farm) to pay someone to teach poor
children living in the parish to read, write, and do some arithmetic. The
persons responsible for paying the charge were to appoint both teacher and
225)By 1738 a 'free school'
had been established which was supervised by two of Carter's sons-in-law as
226)By 1759 the governorship
had passed to the vicar and churchwardens of Brize Norton. Ten boys or girls
were now educated,(fn.
227)implying the practice
recorded from 1793 whereby the governors chose eight children for admission
and the schoolmaster two.(fn.
By 1808 two private schools also existed, respectively teaching 20 children
to read, write, and do arithmetic and 10 children only to read.(fn.
229)Both closed by 1815.
There was then no Sunday school and the teacher at the endowed school was
over 60 and unwilling to adopt the new National Plan.(fn.
230)By 1824 the
schoolmistress no longer taught writing, though all children learnt to read
and girls were also taught knitting and sewing. Children generally stayed at
school until they were 10 or 12 years old.(fn.
231)In 1819 education for
the poor of Brize Norton had been deemed insufficient,(fn.
232)but in 1831 most of the
village children not at the endowed school were allegedly being educated at
their parents' expense.(fn.
233)A Sunday school was
started in 1833, which initially recruited 39 boys and 36 girls aged 6 or
older who paid 1d. a week for books.
The vicar also lent or gave to parishioners tracts produced by the Society
for the Promotion of Christian Knowledge. In 1835 the endowed school
additionally educated 20 fee-payers and another school had 22 pupils who all
learnt reading and writing.(fn.
234)In 1860 three small
schools, presumably including the endowed school, were reported but were
judged by the vicar to be 'little better than dame schools. . . . affording
very insufficient education'.(fn.
235)The endowed school
continued after a board school opened in 1876, but in 1883 its former
mistress was described as mistress of a dame school, which suggests that the
endowed school had ceased.(fn.
Attempts were made to found a Church school from 1856 when the curate,
Joseph Halifax, approached Christ Church, Oxford, for assistance. In 1860
the new vicar, George Fereman, reported that Sir Edward PageTurner, a major
landowner, had promised a site if building money could be raised. Fereman
continued to seek funds and in 1870 obtained the offer of a site and
financial contribution from Christ Church.(fn.
237)But his efforts to
provide a school proved unsuccessful.
Brize Norton School from1874
In 1874 a school board was formed,(fn.
238)and a school was built
by Joseph Timms with stone from his family's quarry.(fn.
239)Designed in picturesque
Tudor Gothic style, with rock-faced stone walls and a red clay-tiled roof,
the school opened on 8 May 1876 and could accommodate 123 children. It was
planned with a large schoolroom linked to the teacher's house by a smaller
room. There was room for three classes in the schoolroom and infants could
meet in the other room.(fn.
240)Attendance was initially
low: in 1878 only an average of 15 attended who were taught by one master.
It improved to 58 by 1880,(fn.
241)to 87 by 1883,(fn.
242)to 99 by 1903, and to
105 by 1907.(fn.
243)In 1891 the school
received an annual government grant of £155, a fee grant of £83, and
voluntary contributions of £53.(fn.
244)A scheme of that year
converted Goddard Carter's endowment into a charity for providing prizes or
rewards for poor scholars.(fn.
245)School leavers were
later given 12s. 6d.
each, which was often spent on clothes for agricultural work or domestic
In 1926 a proposed reorganization as a junior school was rejected because
the managers expected Nonconformist parents to oppose the transfer of older
children to a Church school.(fn.
1930 was L. S. R. ('Boss') Jones, an enthusiast who created a prizewinning
choir and also organized a recorder band, plays, and dancing.(fn.
248)From 1932 senior
children attended Bampton School or Burford Council School, leaving Brize
Norton to cater for infants and juniors.(fn.
249)Numbers fell and
fluctuated between 36 in 1935, 40 in 1937, and 33 in 1940.(fn.
250)In 1939–40 the school
was joined by 37 evacuees and 3 masters from East Ham (London). A school
canteen was opened in 1943.(fn.
After the Second World War, despite the emigration of agricultural workers,
numbers rose as Brize Norton airbase was developed.(fn.
252)In 1949, 22 of 62 pupils
came from Carterton and the infant department was overcrowded. Pressure was
relieved later that year with the expansion of Carterton school.(fn.
253)In 1950, 27 juniors and
16 infants attended Brize Norton school, which was described as 'alive and
254)In 1957–8 a large window
was inserted in the south wall of the schoolroom, and toilets and a
cloakroom were added to the back; old outside toilets were demolished.(fn.
255)Numbers increased to 45
by 1967 and 70 in 1970.(fn.
256)In 1971 a classroom for
infants was built at the back, included with the toilets and cloakroom under
a single flat roof. The teacher's house was incorporated into the schoolc.
1994, and a rendered, portable classroom was installed across the rear
1996. In 2002 a stone outbuilding associated with the house was converted
into a room for design and technology, and music.(fn.
257)In 2001 there were 83
children on the school roll.(fn.
Goddard Carter's rent charge was redeemed in the 1940s by the RAF and
£136 of 3½ per cent War Loan stock. The income of £4 15s.
4d. went undistributed for many
years, generating a balance ofc.
£44 by 1966.(fn.
259)In 1976 funds from the
Carter charity were used to provide each school-leaver with a Bible.(fn.
260)The charity was closed