I started at the school in 1944, shortly after the Allied invasion of German-occupied France. The school buildings were centred in Pond Road, and covered the whole block, that is to say, the area of the present community centre, citizens’ advice bureau and car park. The school had its own chapel, with pews, choir stall and organ, on the opposite side of Pond Road, about where the grass mound in front of the health centre is now. The large house facing you as you look south down Pond Road is called Westover, and provided residential accommodation for single masters and a room for piano tuition.
During the 20th century the name ‘Vinery’ had long since been associated with the house itself but in fact originated from the covered walkway that once stood between the road and the front door of the property. The house has been variously described as having been built in the late Regency period or the second quarter of the 19th century and was a large building situated to the east of and adjacent to St.Mary’s House on the north east corner of the graveyard. It was a building of two houses – in total known as ‘Brighton House’ in the 1870’s but by the 1890’s the west half became known as ‘The Vinery’ with the other half retaining the original name. Continue reading “The Vinery”