St John’s RC Secondary Modern, Fountains Road, 1976

Birchfield Road Primary School

St Vincent RC Primary School, Norfolk Street, 1975

In one of my earlier posts, I mentioned that, as a book publisher, one of the most neglected subjects is schools. This has puzzled me because it is one common experience we all share. In recent years, I have published books on pubs, cinemas, churches, railway stations and many other aspects of Liverpool life (or afterlife if you count all the ghost books), but schools have hardly merited a mention. I have thrown out this challenge already but is there anyone out there who can make a decent stab at the subject?

I cannot add much about today’s selection (there are more to follow) except for St Vincent’s on Norfolk Street because I can see its site from my office door. The main body of the church has been demolished but there is part of the school still standing on Brick Street, even though it is covered in corrugated iron and not recognisable. I met Tommy Walsh recently. Tommy a leading figure of the Liverpool Irish community (he is now in his 80s) was born in nearby Blundell Street and attended St Vincent, so it much have been in operation up to the war. The area was very much an Irish Catholic community and the school was at its centre. Pat O’Mara’s Autobiography of a Liverpool Slummy creates a vivid picture of the area, although he went to St Peter’s, Seel Street. Interestingly, my offices are on the site of Pat’s house, which was pulled down in the 1960s.

Lost Schools of Liverpool

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