Our School’s History

Pimperne Past

“Possibly the earliest record of a school in Pimperne suggests that there was an Infants’ School established in 1827.  There were 46 pupils aged from 18 months to 6 years of age.  In 1832 Lord Portman provided the building for the National School opposite the church.  This was to become the Village Hall and later still a private house.

The present school was opened in 1908 and consisted of 3 classrooms to accommodate about 60 children. The lavatories, or “offices” as they were more commonly known, were outside – no flushes of course, just sanitary pails which, according to the logbook [Each school had one of these and was a little bit like a diary], were often not “attended to properly’ by the cleaner.  Indoor toilets were located in the main part of the building at a later date when these outbuildings became redundant…apart from one, that is, which was retained as a staff toilet!

[In]…October 1925…Lord Portman sold the school and the land on which it stood to the Salisbury Diocesan Board of Finance.

Up until the 1970s the accommodation changed very little. 

The increase in school population to about 140 necessitated an enlargement in staff members.  We had 6 classes, and three new teachers including a deputy head were appointed.  Kitchen staff, a cook-in-charge with a kitchen assistant meant that we were able to produce meals for about 120 children on the premises.

The curriculum of the Infants’ School established in 1827 included reading and the eldest girls were taught needlework.  Later, in the National Schools, all pupils were instructed in reading, writing and arithmetic (the three Rs as we know them today).  All 46 girls were taught needlework and knitting and 12 of the boys gardening.  From 1918 onwards there were frequent mentions of curriculum in the logbook.

[Extract from the “Book of Pimperne – A Millennium Celebration” Compiled by Jean Coull]

Pimperne Present and the Future

I hope that you enjoyed finding out a little bit about the past history of our fabulous village school. Many things have changed and change will continue to occur.

We are delighted to now be educating our children in a purpose-built school building. The school continues to enjoy a very good relationship with the Village Hall, who as part of the new school build project, had their car park resurfaced.  Parents and visitors to the school may park in this space and follow the footpath to the school gates at the beginning and end of the day or to our School Office and Main Entrance.

So, the future for our school?  I am confident that, along with the new building and facilities, will come an endless energy of possibilities and opportunities.  The outline of these opportunities are already taking shape. A school defines itself by its very ethos and nature, by the staff and most importantly the ever changing outcomes that are sought for every individual child that becomes a member.  As a school community we face the fast-paced world that is twenty-first century education, whatever the changes or expectations placed upon a school, Pimperne Primary School will continue to keep every child at the heart of its decisions.

As time goes by and days pass, the past and what is yet to come, the future, will one day be the history; a history which I am positive will be in keeping with what has gone before at Pimperne Primary School.

Those of us fortunate enough to be part of the timeline, are privileged to have been a small part in the life of this extraordinary school.

Mrs Fiona Waller – Headteacher