Nork Council School mixed Juniors and Infants School (Now Warren Mead)
A brief history
| Publicly provided education in the early 1930s was classified as Elementary for children up to the age of eleven, and Secondary thereafter.
Three such schools for young children existed in the area, Banstead Council Junior Mixed and Infant school in Banstead High Street and two similar schools in Burgh Heath run by the Church of England and the Methodists respectively.
The rapidly expanding housing developments led to severe overcrowding in these schools and this caused widespead disatisfaction especially in the newly developed Nork estate. Few families owned cars at that time and the trip from Nork to Banstead was two miles each way with some children returning home for lunch.
In June of 1935, a young Nork girl, Margaret Simmons, the daughter of a county councillor living in Warren Road, was killed in an accident on her way up Bolters Lane. This event spurred Nork residents into action and they wrote to Whitehall and Banstead Council. It worked. By the end of January 1938 a site in Roundwood Way had been acquired at a cost of £ 2,190 for a “new five class unit for junior mixed and infants”. Building started in early 1939.
The total cost was £17,646 comprised of:
Opening day was set for 4 September that year but war was declared on the 3rd and this delayed the opening until 19 September when Dorothy Kate Anstey became the new head teacher. One of the first additions to the school was a set of three air raid shelters.
The tree and the fields on the crest were meant to represent the rural park setting.
The school was designed for 240 children in five classroom and was nearly full by May 1943.
Early members of staff included Miss Ashby, Mrs Rundell, Mrs Lloyd, Miss Waghorn (later Mrs Shackelford after she married a Canadian soldier), and Mrs Wiggins who taught at the school for sixteen years.
The original school, located just off Roundwood Way, was initially for infants and juniors. Miss Anstey's entry in the school log for the first day the school was opened records the name as Nork Council School, a Junior Mixed and Infant School.
Due to overcrowding, a separate Nork infant school started to be built in 1960. During the period of building the name varied. After the new Infant school was opened, the original premises became only a junior school from c 1961. Entrance to the Infant school is from Partridge Mead..
A number of young trees were planted there in 1962 and dedicated to Miss Anstey.
In 1973, primary education was reorganised to include children up to age twelve in Middle schools which replaced the Junior schools.
On 4 Sept 1973 the school on Roundwood Way opened as Nork County Middle School
The notification of a further change of name was recorded on 21 Sept 1973 when the Roundwood Way school became Warren Mead County Middle School.
A further name change to Warren Mead Junior school, a community school, lasted till 31 March 2014,
On the 1 April 2014 the school retained its name but changed from a community school to an Academy and is now part of the Warren Mead Infant and Junior School Partnership, an Academy within GLF schools.
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Note: Margaret Simmons is buried in All Saints churchyard, just a few metres to the left hand side of the main door.
Main source for this article was a set of notes compiled by Geoffrey Robinson in 1989 and the school log book.