Milton Mount College was a girls' boarding school that was established in Gravesend, Kent, southwest England. It was founded in 1871, opened to pupils in 1873, and the original building was demolished in 1972.

Milton Mount College
View of the school building
View of the original school building on a postcard, 1903
1: Gravesend, Kent
2: Cirencester, Gloucestershire
3: Crawley, West Sussex

United Kingdom
Coordinates51°25′55″N 0°22′25″E / 51.431950°N 0.373682°E / 51.431950; 0.373682
Other nameMilton Mount College for Girls
Wentworth College
TypeGirls' boarding school
Religious affiliation(s)Congregational Church
FounderRev. William Guest
Head teacherSelina Hadland (1871–1889)
Ethel Mary Conder (1889–)
AffiliationCongregational Church

Establishment of the school edit

Milton Mount College was founded by the Rev. William Guest, Minister of the Princes Street Congregational Church as a religious school for the daughters of Congregational ministers, although other pupils were also accepted.[1] It was located on the southern side of Windmill Hill at the junction of Parrock Road and Echo Square. The architect of the school building was C.E. Robins from Southampton and it was built in the Victorian Gothic style in an "E" shape. The foundation stone was laid in 1871 and the school opened in 1873.[2]

The first headmistress of the school was Miss Selina Hadland (1838–1919), a pioneer of girls' education.[3] Mount Place College is believed to be the first school in the UK to include domestic science in its curriculum.[1]

Later years edit

Hadland retired from her post in 1889 and Ethel Mary Conder succeeded her.[2] The school remained in its initial location until World War I when, after air raids started locally on 4 June 1915, it closed on 24 June 1915 and moved to Cirencester in Gloucestershire for the following term and then Worth Park near Crawley in West Sussex, where it continued until after World War II.[1] Tilgate House and Worth Park, used by Milton Mount College, were demolished in the 1950s.[4] The school merged with Bournemouth Collegiate School to become Wentworth College in the 1960s.

Gravesend building later history edit

When the school vacated its original building, it was initially used as a hostel for munitions workers at Vickers and later for a period as a hospital for invalided soldiers. It was used for cases of venerial disease, after being requisitioned by the Admiralty in March 1918, so the school declined to return to the location.[5]

In 1921, the building was sold for use as an orphan school, run by the Roman Catholic church. In 1926, it was officially opened by the Roman Catholic Bishop of Southwark, continuing as part of the Southwark Rescue Society. In 1940 during World War II, the school was evacuated to Ugbrooke Park, Chudleigh, Devon, the residence of Lord and Lady Clifford. During World War II, the building was used as a canteen by the Auxiliary Fire Service (later the National Fire Service) and the Women's Voluntary Service. The school returned to Milton Mount in September 1945 at the end of World War II. It was closed in 1951, after which a number of new St Mary's Children's homes and buildings were erected on Parrock Road and Glen View. After remaining empty for a period, in 1972 the original building was demolished and the site was then developed for housing.[5]

Alumnae edit

Milton Mount Primary School

Milton Mount Primary School edit

The similarly named Milton Mount Primary School in Crawley was established in 1972.[6]

Archives edit

Information on the school is available in the archives of the West Sussex Record Office.[7][8]

References edit

  1. ^ a b c "Milton Mount College". Discover Gravesend. UK. Retrieved 14 May 2023.
  2. ^ a b Argent, Alan (May 1998). "Nursed by the Church: The Founding of the Congregational Schools" (PDF). The Journal of the United Reformed Church History Society. 6 (2): 76–97.
  3. ^ Kaye, Elaine (23 September 2004). Hadland, Selina (1838–1919), headmistress. Vol. 1. Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/52266.
  4. ^ Bastable, Roger (1983). Crawley: A Pictorial History. Chichester: Phillimore & Co. p. 169. ISBN 0-85033-503-5.
  5. ^ a b Edwards, Lynda. "Milton Mount College, Gravesend, to be Demolished". KAR Articles. UK. Retrieved 14 May 2023.
  6. ^ "Milton Mount Primary School". UK. Retrieved 14 May 2023.
  7. ^ "Milton Mount College production of 'The Boy with a Cart', 1955 (MMC 1/9/7/87)". UK: West Sussex Record Office. 12 October 2016. Retrieved 14 May 2023.
  8. ^ "Milton Mount College, Worth Park". The National Archives. UK: UK Government. Retrieved 14 May 2023.

External links edit