Memories of St Mark’s School, Handley

Entry from school logbook (Vol 1 p 257) November 18th 1890

“Ernest Fox was my father. He was born February 25th 1882, so would be eight years of age at the time of this report. He was the second of six brothers from the Napoleon’s Home, Woolley Moor (demolished when the Ogston Reservoir was constructed).

I remember being told that his mother made him a little corset like garment because of the beatings and also that on the final occasion, when a man from the village was to come to give the punishment, he escaped through a window having been locked in the school room.

After this his mother took him away from Handley School and he and his brothers were sent to Brackenfield School.

I remember him saying that he started work on Bonfire Night, walking with his father to Clay Cross Company as an apprentice fitter & turner (14-21 years old).”

Edna M Williams


“I attended Handley School for a short time but we left Handley when I was 5 and a half years old. I remember being told to race to a wall and banged my head and I still have a scar.

I also remember the school doctor coming and deciding that I needed my tonsils and adenoids removing. It was a craze in the medical world at the time.

I remember playing in the school yard at “In & out the Windows”, “The Farmer Wants aWife” and “Ring a Ring a Roses”.

When my sister was there she was told not to sing because she growled. She was taught by a teacher called Miss Tradell who frightened her.”

Edna M Williams