Blewcoat School

Blewcoat School is a building in Caxton Street, London, that was built in 1709 as a school for the poor (a Bluecoat school). It was used as a school until 1926. In 1954, it was purchased by the National Trust who used it as a gift shop and information centre. In 2013 the building was refurbished as The Blewcoat, a store for fashion designer Ian Stuart.

The Blewcoat
Blewcoat School, May 2008
General information
LocationCity of Westminster
London, SW1
CountryUnited Kingdom
Coordinates51°29′54.3″N 0°8′9.9″W / 51.498417°N 0.136083°W / 51.498417; -0.136083Coordinates: 51°29′54.3″N 0°8′9.9″W / 51.498417°N 0.136083°W / 51.498417; -0.136083
Current tenantsIan Stuart
Construction started1709 (1709)


Statue above door

The school was founded in Duck Lane in about 1688 by voluntary subscription as a charity school for the education of poor boys to teach them reading, writing, religion, and trades. It moved to purpose-built premises in Caxton Street. From 1714 to about 1876, it also admitted girls. In 1899, it was agreed that the school should move to a site that had been owned by the Christ Church National Schools Trust, and the Caxton Street site was then used for an elementary school.[1] The school closed in 1926.[2]

Later usesEdit

During World War II, the building was used by the American services as a store. Afterwards, the Girl Guides used it as a youth club. When the National Trust bought it in 1954, it was used as their membership and head office. Later, it was converted into a gift shop.[2][3] June 2014 saw the opening of British designer Ian Stuart's boutique in the building, selling bridal gowns, special occasion wear and evening gown collections.


  1. ^ Cox, Montague H. (1926). "Blue Coat School". Survey of London: volume 10: St. Margaret, Westminster, part I: Queen Anne’s Gate area (1926), pp. 144-147. British History Online. Retrieved 21 April 2011.
  2. ^ a b Provençal, Nina (February 2011). "Business of the Month: January and February 2011 - The National Trust Shop". Business of the Month. Victoria Business Improvement District. Retrieved 21 April 2011.
  3. ^ Tye, Timothy. "Blewcoat School, London". Historical Buildings in London. Timothy Tye. Archived from the original on 6 October 2011. Retrieved 21 April 2011.