A parochial school in Bloomsbury

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Frontage of no 25 Old Gloucester Street (the 1877 building.)

St George the Martyr Parochial School’s somewhat off the beaten track despite being just a short distance from Holborn and Great Ormond Street. Much of the footfall out of the Queen’s Square area is either north to Russell Square or westwards to Southampton Row.

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Frontage of no 24 Old Gloucester Street (the 1863 building.)

Formerly there were two of these buildings in Old Gloucester Street. The older and larger is now known as Lundonia House and has been the home of the October Gallery since 1979. The stone on the corner of the building has the date 1863 however the structure itself was not completed until 1864.

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The arched window with its inscriptions above the main door at No 25.

The smaller 1877 building (designed by J & S Flint Clarkson) still retains its identity despite having been though several phases of ownership, most recently as the Jeff Wooller College/Holborn School of Finance. The main building was built in an early Gothic style whilst the remainder of the structure is actually a later extension built in a simple brick style. In 1999 it was designated a Grade II listed building.

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Foundation stone and housemaster’s old doorbell at No 25.

The construction of the 1877 building was practically a doorstep job for the architects J & S Flint Clarkson since their offices was just up the road at 28 Great Ormond Street. Clarkson’s were primarily church designers – with the exception of the St George school and a library at Limehouse.

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Foundation stone at No 24.

What is a parochial school? Its a private school linked to a religious organisation so has a substantial religious curriculum in addition to the usual subjects. The schools were associated with St George’s Church, a rather different but handsomely styled building nearby.

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