Wimborne Infant School Log for World War One Years 1914 – 1918

This interesting document records how school life continued as usual during the Great War.

The Log contains very few personal details or reference to the war, although there are two notes made by the headteacher:

  • February 23rd 1917 “Yesterday afternoon one of the younger children – Fred Foote – was knocked off his brother’s bicycle on the way to school and unfortunately has broken his leg”.
  • December 6th 1917: “Mrs Gill has been granted permission to be absent today and tomorrow as her husband is on leave from France”

Attendance is regularly recorded and appears to have been affected by the weather, particularly rain and snow.

Registers are also regularly checked and signed by visitors (members of the School Board?), particularly Cordelia L Hanham and Rev. Fletcher, and recorded in the log book:
“I examined the registers this afternoon/morning and found them correctly marked” Signed …

Special visits are also recorded
“The Hon Lady Hanham and Miss Hanham very kindly distributed buns for the children’s lunch this morning”.
– May 13th or 14th 1915: “Visitation of the Bishop”.

Cases of illness are regularly recorded (whooping cough, mumps, diphtheria, chicken pox)
On November 1915, the school was closed for 2 weeks on the orders of the Schools Medical Officer owing to an epidemic of chicken pox.

The school was also closed regularly for half-day or full-day holidays granted for Empire Day, Ascension Day, Ash Wednesday. This is frequently recorded as “School closed for secular purposes”.
There are also records of school closure for good attendance and a half-day given for the children to attend Pound Day at Dean’s Court.

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