Anne Johns and Jenny Head, authors of Inspired to Teach, which records the history of the former College of Sarum St Michael (Salisbury Training College), will be publishing their second book in May 2019.
We Will Teach! is based on thorough original research and focuses on the link between Salisbury and the Channel Islands. Between the 1840s and the 1970s, hundreds of young women from Jersey and Guernsey chose to train as teachers in Salisbury. Leaving home is a major event for any young person and the early students also faced long and dangerous sea crossings. Moving to the mainland was (and still is) a significant adventure – and what did the students find when they arrived in Salisbury?
Many people in and around Salisbury were taught by teachers who trained at the College of Sarum St Michael. Whilst training, students also did teaching practice in schools in towns and villages. Skylark coaches ferried excited and apprehensive young women to Urchfont, Donhead St Andrew, Swallowcliffe, Bournemouth, Coombe Bissett, Amesbury, Gomeldon, Larkhill … the names roll on.
Eliza Smith, arriving from Guernsey in 1843, was the first Channel Island student to train at the College. She subsequently taught at Longstock School and then at Nether Wallop, where she married the Headmaster. Annie Reynolds from Jersey trained in the 1860s, just before Kate Hardy attended the College. She was appointed to Stinsford & Bockhampton School near Dorchester, where Thomas Hardy (Kate’s brother) was baptised and is buried. Emily Hitchings, also from Jersey was appointed Mistress of Wilton Infant School in 1863. She had 180 infants in her care and was assisted by just two pupil-teachers. Undeterred by this considerable challenge, Emily had a long teaching career, most of it on the mainland.
For many former students however, the tug of their island homes was considerable – and for Evelyn Hoyles, teaching in London, the call of home and family was loud and clear. She caught the last boat back to Jersey before the Occupation in 1940. We have a treasure trove of fascinating stories of individual young women in every era, none more poignant than those portrayed during the 1940s when the Channel Islands were occupied. Life here on the mainland was hard, but conditions in the islands were far worse. Read about the tough challenges faced by Victorian students, the developing link between Salisbury and Jersey and Guernsey and the sad demise of the flourishing College of Sarum St Michael in 1978.
Visit our website www.inspiredtoteach.co.uk to find out more. The book can be pre-ordered for £12.00 plus £3.00 p&p. Following publication it will also be available at the Salisbury Museum.
Money raised will again go to the local CRESS UK charity to support much needed educational projects in South Sudan.