St Andrew's Church, and school, Norton Green

From Wightpedia
St Andrew's Church, Norton, Isle of Wight
St Andrew's Church, Norton Green

A gift of the land known as the Furlongs was made by Miss Elizabeth Ann Hamond (later Mrs. John Henry Good, mother of Cecil Henry Brent-Good) to Rev Isaacson, the rector of Freshwater in 1875 as a site for a school and church.

A trust was set up and in 1904 the first stage of building took place, a school designed to be the chancel of the future church.

The infants’ school

In November 1904 an infants' school was open at Norton Green, however in June the County Education Committee (CEC) turned down a request from the managers of the Freshwater Schools for an infants’ school at Norton as the CEC did not consider the school necessary.[1]

Despite the reaction of the County Education Committee, the national Board of Education authorised the managers of the Freshwater National Schools to appoint teachers to the Norton infants’ school.[2]

There remained doubt about the school and in the following year a public inquiry took place to consider “weather the Norton-green infants’ Church public elementary school in the parish of Freshwater is necessary or not.”  At the inquiry it was stated that the school had been provided with full approval in January 1902[3].

The Board of Education decision followed within the month. It was accepted that there had been good reasons to establish the school in the first place, however that as the Local Education Authority had determined not to provide accommodation for children under five in rural areas, and there being only 12 children of upwards of five years at the school, the school should be regarded as unnecessary after 30 April 1905. The Norton school managers were to claim grants for the period from 21 November 1904 to 30 April 1905[4].

In 1906 a new Council School in Queen’s Road, Freshwater was opened,

St Andrew’s Church

A licence had been obtained in 1906 to use the school building for church services as St Andrew’s Mission Church attached to All Saints’ Church, Freshwater.

In 1910 the will of the late Mrs Elizabeth J. Grosvenor Hood left a legacy to build a new church at Norton Green and to provide a Curate to undertake regular services at St Andrew’s[5].

The new church building was designed by Mr J. W. Newman, of Freshwater (who had designed the original building) in English Gothic style, and built by Mr A. P. Williams of Newport, was completed two years later and was dedicated by the Bishop of Southampton on 4 September 1913[6].

The church continued in use for 60 years, when it was closed due to the size of the congregation. It had never been fully consecrated and for many years had been a garrison church for nearby Golden Hill Fort[7].

Having removed the fixtures and fittings, together with the stain glass window, the intention of the Trust was to sell the building, with planning permission to convert to a dwelling, by auction in July 1981[8].

  1. Isle of Wight County Press 11 June 1904
  2. Isle of Wight County Press - 5 November 1904
  3. Isle of Wight County Press 22 April 1905
  4. Isle of Wight County Press 6 May 1905
  5. Isle of Wight County Press 19 July 1913
  6. Isle of Wight County Press 6 & 13 September 1913
  7. Isle of Wight County Press 25 June 1977
  8. Isle of Wight County Press 12 June 1981