Opening, Closing & Fire at the Church Street School

School Dedication

The Building

The long awaited New Building for the Minster Grammar School was opened on the 29th October 1964 by the then Bishop of Southwell. It had been delayed by funding issues, disagreement on the design and also the possibility of Roman remains (or was it a plague grave from the middle ages) adjacent to the site.

We do not have a great deal of information about the event except two photographs and a 3-page copy of what was likely to be a simple folder of the event. You can see this on the collection of photos from the 1960’s

The Young Student

We know that the youngster is described as Rhodes G (aged 8) but that is all we do know. Can anyone cast any more light? I would be grateful.

Of great interest are some of the comments on the photographs by our readers

The Path and the Punishment Battalion

Note from George Rhodes:"Dedication" of the site of the proposed link path to the Minster - outside of the art/geography rooms and next to the site of the subsequently built JD block. This path took some time to materialise, as I recall, walking up Church Street for morning assemblies for a good few years thereafter

Comment in reply from Steve Stafford. The path was finally paved in the summer of 1967 by a 6th form punishment battalion led by Andrew Walster Snr. ‘Paving stones were hauled from the new school end as the path was carved out and laid towards the Minster. If you walk this path today you can see that like Hadrian's Wall there were changes to either the specifications and/or performance as work teams learnt on the job. I remember it was hot work. These days no-one believes me when I explain we went to school every single day even after the exams, free periods were always spent on the premises, and there was no sloping off home as 6th formers seem to do now. I guess schooling was not just about preparing for and taking exams, so it seemed just another part of the school experience at the time. For relief we also had a project to undertake. I brought my bike in from Mansfield and went around doing fieldwork studying fords, of which there were far more than you might expect. It all comes flooding back whenever I walk the path.’

Note that the 'path was finally paved in the summer of 1967 by a 6th form punishment battalion led by Andrew Walster Snr.' is there any input on this?

Change of Role and Final Closure

In September the Minster Grammar School underwent an important change by moving into the Comprehensive system by becoming a Comprehensive Co-Educational School. It finally closed in September 2007, when the New Minster School was opened, thus having lasted only 30 years.

Fire at the Site

On the 5th November 2007 the school site suffered a significant fire and this received wide local coverage. It was reported that 6 people were detained, in connection with the fire, aged between 12 and 16. The actual fire is shocking in itself but to me some of the comments on Youtube are even more so.

All in all a checkered history for the site and you can read more about its current state of dilapidation.