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Our Story

Brougham Street Community Nursery School opened on the 17th February, 1944.

At the time it was known as 'Skipton Brougham Street War Time Hut'.

​An extract from one of the nursery's early inspections gives us more detail:

"Brougham Street Nursery School came into being in order that young children might be accommodated and suitably educated whilst their mothers were being employed in industry in Skipton or doing other work of importance to the nation’s war effort. A Wartime Nursery Hut was erected at one end of the girls’ playground at Skipton, Brougham Street Secondary Modern School as, apparently, there was no other convenient site available in the vicinity. The Hut was opened on the 17th February, 1944 and the original idea was that it would house 80 children, between the ages of 3 and 5 years."

Rita Mayman was headteacher from the 3rd September 1945 until 1950. At our 70th anniversary in 2014, she wrote to the nursery and shared some details about the school day:

"We gave the children orange juice and cod liver oil, at mid morning the children had fresh milk. At midday, the children had a hot meal, which was delivered by Willis's van from the original kitchen which was situated by Cinder Path (Regent area). This was later converted for use by Craven College (Agriculture). Later the building was demolished to make way for the Building Society. The kitchen was transferred to Brougham Street School playground. The younger children had a sleep everyday".

She recalled the names of some of the children she taught:

Robert Benson, Barbara Paget, Allan Tillotson, Peter and Ann Sheeran, Richard and Elizabeth Bray, John Wiggan, Eric Thornton, Peter Shorrock, "German Boy".

Her fellow colleagues were:

Chrissie Horner (ex-teacher), 5, Craven Street; Abigail Smith (helper), Regent Drive; Carol Palmer (dinner lady & caretaker), Castle Street.

In later years she recalls that the temporary helpers (who stayed each for about 3 months) were:

Nina Watson, Elliot Street; Elsie Edgar, Earby; Margot Brease, Addingham

The 'Girl with bow'  on the 1st photo, Pamela Davison, also wrote a note about her time at Brougham Street Nursery at our 70th anniversary:

"I came to the nursery school in 1944. I remember having to have a sleep after dinner in little wooden beds. I was always in bother as I could never go to sleep. Also, sometimes the teacher would tie the ends of a sheet to the door handle and we would take it in turns to get on the sheet and she would hold the other ends and swing us to and fro".


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