This is the sad and neglected Georgian building in Broad Street that was – for over two hundred years – a bustling school.
It was built in 1754 to house King Edward’s School and in use through to 1990 when the last of the pupils still based there left to join their already relocated colleagues in a move to the school’s new 14 acre North Road site.
Since then the Grade 11• listed property in the city centre has remained empty. Sold for development – plans to turn it into an hotel or pub/restaurant have so far come to nothing.
The building remains on the ‘Heritage at Risk Register’ though repair work to the roof has at least reduced the risk to the property.
Recently, I was in the car park behind York Buildings and could see the side of the old school wall above the boundary wall of the parking lot.
Etched into its surface – in very neat carved writing – are the names of various people and a range of early 20th century dates alongside them.
Are these former pupils with the dates of their time at the school alongside their names? Or maybe teachers who taught in this building?
Perhaps someone knows more. I am sure a list of pupils from 1900 onwards would help identify some of the names carved in stone.
The sad thing about this building is that I believe it is owned by a couple of brothers who run a large pub chain, that want to convert it into a hotel/pub and stubbornly refuse to consider anything else and are leaving it to rot. I honestly think that this could become fantastic co-working space preserving the building ‘as is’. I’m guessing a council compulsory purchase could ‘rescue’ it, but this really just needs to be made into something that respects the heritage of the building.
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