Wales online reports on the 150th anniversary of Bancyfelin School:
"Time off for mushroom picking and going to the fair, earth closets for toilets and no electricity. Life was very different for the first pupils at a Welsh village school celebrating its 150th anniversary this year."
A scan down the log books of Bancyfelin School in Carmarthenshire shows it had no electricity until 1949, no canteen until 1967 and earth closet toilets until 1955. Children, at what is now a proudly Welsh medium school, were also told to speak English until 1903. Bancyfelin, which opened two years after the 1870 Education Act made primary school attendance compulsory, has seen generations of children come and go, welcomed evacuees during World War Two and boasts an alumni including current Welsh rugby union players Jonathan and James Davies, and former internationals Mike Phillips and Delme Thomas. Headteacher Trefina Jones is all too aware that the future of small rural schools is under threat, but said her primary, part of a federation of three schools, is a vibrant and important part of Welsh life in 2022 That’s partly why she decided to write a history of the Bancyfelin School to the present day with help from local historian Bruce Wallace.
You can read the article in full here.
To learn more about the book, you can look here.