Huntley Street School, Huntley Street, Grahamstown





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Post date: 07/08/2012
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History: The old school in Huntley Street is of the greatest historical and architectural importance. It is generally accepted that this is the oldest Anglican school building in the Republic. The foundation stone was laid on 18th June, 1844, by Mrs. Hare, wife of Col. J. Hare, the Lieutenant-Governor of the Eastern Districts. Owing to the Xhosa war that broke out in 1846 and on account of the lack of sufficient money, work progressed very slowly and the building was eventually opened on 4th October, 1849. It was originally intended that the building should serve as a Sunday School for St. George’s Church which later became the Grahamstown Cathedral, but even in 1849 it was decided to use it for a day school. In 1857 it became the St. George’s Cathedral Grammar School and it continued to serve this purpose until 1901.
When Bishop Armstrong established St. Andrew’s College in 1852, the first classes were held in this building, and in 1860 the first Synod of the Diocese was held there. In 1869 a so-called Guild Hall and Assembly Room were added to provide better accommodation for the multifarious purposes which the building had to serve.
When the building was no longer used as a school it was let to the government as a research laboratory through the instrumentality of Dr. S. Schonland. Subsequently it was again used for educational purposes by the Anglican Community of the Resurrection to whom it was transferred in 1918.
Visual Description: Oriiginal building symmetrical with entrance portch and anval style - hood moulds to windows. The school was built of local Witteberg quartzite which in the course of the years has weathered to a rich brown colour. According to Dr. Ronald Lewcock the stonework is of exceptional quality and the architecture is an outstanding example of English Gothic revival.
Site Features:
Condition: Poor : needs maintenance
Construction Date: 1844-1849;1870c
Catalogue: Radford 1989 (b), No: Q.16, Significance Category:


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