In 1895, the Rathbone School was built on Albany Road in Edge Hill, not far from where the Tunnels are today. The school was a large brick built building featuring its name impressively carved into 3 very large sandstone blocks, a large foundation stone and last but not least a lovely Liverbird carved in great detail. Even the bird had blue eyes.
The foundation stone reads:
“The name of this School commemorates the eminent services rendered to Elementary Education by Samuel Greg Rathbone Esq For 18 years chairman of the Liverpool School Board 1895”
Sadly the school was closed 1998/99, finally being demolished around 1999/2000.
Once the building had been demolished, thankfully the City Council at that time rescued and put into storage the lovely carved stonework, once a prominent part of this old school.
Well where were these pieces stored, on Mason St on the piece of land that was once occupied by Joseph Williamson’s house and would later become the Friends of Williamson’s Tunnels home.
We found the huge artifacts from history, amongst a great deal of other thing that had been stored, covered over and largely hidden from sight.
This last week, we sought the assistance of a chap in a JCB who happened to trundle past the house site in a JCB. By sheer fluke, it turned out to be Rob, the very chap that had driven the JCB for us on our 3 previous special Merseyflex and Magnet digs.
You couldn’t help us could you? We asked, and he was more than happy to help. Lifting these huge sandstone artifacts from an inaccessible pile to where they are today, available for all to see.
This is the very first time that these have been visible to anyone that visits us, no longer hidden out sight and forgotten.
you can watch a short video here on our YouTube Channel: