Beth Astridge, History of Place Archivist, and I visited the Royal School for the Blind in Wavertree, Liverpool to have a sneak peek at their rich and varied archive.
Pupils were expected to rise at 6.30am (with the exception of Sundays, Christmas Day and Good Friday) and be in bed by 9.30pm.
The archive is stored within the school and has items dating back to 1791 when the school was founded. As this was only an initial visit we tried to concentrate on locating documents we think would be interesting to explore further or those that may wield fascinating stories that we can share. We are hopeful to spend more time in the archive with members of the Volunteer Research and Archive Group.
Documents potentially worth exploring further include; sketches and plans of the London Road site, a number of bound speeches in favour of the school, copies of the schools ‘rules’, menu’s, schedules, photographs, newspaper clippings, Headmaster’s journals, pupil diaries, the admissions register (from 1791!) and annual reports.
In the 1803 regulations it explains Pupils were expected to rise at 6.30am (with the exception of Sundays, Christmas Day and Good Friday) and be in bed by 9.30pm. All pupils followed the schedule which set out times for various meals, work and prayers.
We are looking forward to exploring further!