Malhamdale Local History Group    





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Bordley 1911

At Bordley House about 1911 (named)

Bordley 1921

At Bordley Hall about 1921 (named)


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The History of Education in Malhamdale

Lee Gate & Bordley Schools (c.1891-1928)

Malham Moor township is very large, mainly centred around Malham Tarn but on the Eastern side there is an elongated narrow section which includes Lee Gate and New House Farm, which adjoin Bordley Parish. Lee Gate is 3 miles from Kirkby Malham United School, 4 miles from Malham Tarn School, and about 5 miles from Threshfield and Cracoe Schools.

Some of the Carr children from Park House had been attending Kirkby Malham United School since April 1885, but it is recorded in the Log Book that the children were absent for many weeks in Winter.

“Nov. 4th 1886. Mr Carr, Park House, Bordley, wrote requesting his children to be loosened from school at 3.30 each day owing to the long distance and it being dark before they arrived home – if not granted he would be obliged to keep them at home during the Winter.”

When attending Kirkby Malham the older Carr children travelled each day, taking turns to ride a pony. The younger children stayed in Malham monday to friday, with Maggie Hurtley at Cherry Tree Cottage .

The Log Book of Kirkby Malham United School 1891 records:-

“Oct. 30th 1891. I hear that a school is about to be commenced at Bordley Moor, consequently we shall lose 4 children.”
“Nov. 3rd 1891. Removed the names Ethel, Jane and Frank Carr from the register, John Carr has returned to school.”

The school was fee paying and held in the front room of Lee Gate, the teacher being Miss Bridges who lived with the Nelson family at Lee Gate. The children used the front door for access, and used a small door alongside the staircase to get coal for the fire, so as not to disturb the family. One of the Nelson family wrote an article for Rylstone Parish Magazine about the school at Lee Gate together with a photograph.

The children attending at the beginning were :-

Jane Nelson (born 1883) Lee Gate
John Nelson (born 1884) Lee Gate
Annie Nelson (born 1886) Lee Gate
Ethel Mary Carr (born 1880) Park House
Bessie Carr (born 1881) Park House
Frank Carr (born 1883) Park House
Jane Duckett Carr (born 1884) Park House

They were soon joined by the elder children of the Horner family from Bordley House.

In 1905 the school moved to Bordley when a room at Bordley Hall, the home of Mr and Mrs Robinson, was given recognition as a temporary schoolroom and a teacher was provided by the LEA.  At this point there were obviously discussions about a permanent building because a letter from the LEA to the Board of Education in London in 1905 when the temporary recognition was requested states:

The local landowners have under consideration the question of a permanent school, and it is quite likely they will undertake to erect a suitable building on a site not far from Bordley Hall.”

This in fact never happened and the arrangement at Bordley Hall only lasted for two years due to the ill health of Mrs Robinson.

So in 1907 the school moved to its third location at Bordley House, the home of the Horner family whose five children were all to attend the school. The schoolroom was the Horner’s sitting room which an LEA letter to the Department of Education states:

“…the sitting room which is slightly larger than Mr Robinson’s parlour being 17 feet long, 18 feet wide and 8 feet six inches high.  The room is better lighted and altogether is superior to Mr Robinson’s parlour.” 

The move to Bordley House was scheduled to be completed just before Miss Green left as teacher on May 31st 1907.

This arrangement at Bordley House lasted until the end of the school year of 1911 when the school was once again without premises and moved back to Bordley Hall to the room which had been used previously with the proviso that the toilet arrangements were improved.  (Shortly after this the Horner family left Bordley House and the Foster family from Beckermonds moved in and stayed two to three years.  Their children Florence and Winifred both attended the school at Bordley Hall.)

A photograph of children taken at Bordley House around 1911 shows the teacher Miss Elsie Simon, a Scotswoman, who lodged at Lainger House.

The children attending in 1911 were :-

Foster Nelson (so John and Nanny Nelson) Lee Gate
Nanny Nelson (do John and Nanny Nelson) Lee Gate
Charlie Horner (so Thomas and Jane Horner) Bordley House
Eleanor Horner (do Thomas and Jane Horner) Bordley House
Mary Horner (do Thomas and Jane Horner) Bordley House
William Horner (so Thomas and Jane Horner) Bordley House
Laura Horner (do Thomas and Jane Horner) Bordley House
Lily Proctor Bordley Green
Elsie Proctor Bordley Green
Maggie Banks Park House
Mercy Banks Park House

The Banks family had been living at Park House since around 1898.

Another delightful photograph shows the children at Bordley Hall School around 1922 with their teacher, Miss Poacher.
The children are :-

Jim Dinsdale Bordley House
Lance Dinsdale Bordley House
Lucy Nelson Lee Gate
Elsie Nelson Lee Gate
John Nelson (so John & Elizabeth Nelson) New House Farm
Willy Nelson (so John & Elizabeth Nelson) New House Farm
James Nelson (so John & Elizabeth Nelson) New House Farm
Ted Nelson (so John & Elizabeth Nelson) New House Farm
Nellie Thompson Bordley Hall
Evelyn Thompson Bordley Hall
Annie Foster (cousins to the Nelson children) Bordley Green
John Foster Bordley Green
Norman Robinson nr Lainger Farm

Bordley Hall School closed on June 12th 1928, the last teacher being Miss Jane Green who lived at Thorlby, near Skipton, and travelled to Bordley Hall on a motorcycle. When Bordley Hall School closed the children transferred to Gargrave School.

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