History of village schools
At their June meeting members of the Social and Wine Circle were treated to a talk on Victorian village schools. The speaker was Sarah Doig who now lives in part of what was once the village school at Rickinghall in Suffolk. She went through how the education of children had progressed through Sunday Schools, charity schools, workhouse schools and voluntary schools. But it was not until the end of the Victorian age that all children were expected to be schooled up to the age of thirteen. She used illustrations of various old documents such as log books and plans to show how schooling slowly developed even though attendance was limited by illnesses such as smallpox and whooping cough. At harvest time the schools virtually closed down so that the children could work in the fields.
The meeting was held in Old Buckenham Church Rooms which had been itself been the village school in the past. Next month the meeting will be held al fresco in the garden of one of the members, providing an opportunity for some enjoyable talking, eating and drinking.