Rathbone School Stones on display for the first time…

The original Rathbone School Stones, on display for the first time

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” first, left hand name stone
“Rathbone” second, middle name stone
“School” third, Right hand name stone
This lovely carved and detailed Liverbird

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”

The Foundation stone

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 see the main 3 name sections and the foundation stone in these old images (copyright unknown)

you can watch a short video here on our YouTube Channel:


  1. My wife taught at Rathbone School from 1974until it closed. Where can we see these school pueces please.
    Mike Elliott

    • Hi, they are on display at Joseph Williamson’s house site on Mason Street, Edge Hill. We are open on Wednesday’s and Sundays. You can pop in between 11 am and 2pm either day and ask to see them 😀

      Cheers, Chris

  2. It’s lovely to see these items preserved and they are great examples of the skill and artistry of Liverpool’s Victorian craftsmen.

  3. Thanks for preserving this important piece of History .My Great aunt Edith summers taught there ,she was an assistant mistress 199-1901 and 1st Assistant mistress 1901-1911,she went on to become headmistress at 2 other schools in liverpool.

  4. I’ve no idea what the local schools in Kensington are like now days, I only hope the kids are as happy as I was at Rathbone. There was no end of wonderful people working in that school from Mr Thomas down, I remain grateful to them all.

    So happy to see the stones remain and (at least in a small way) Rathbone lives on.

  5. I’ve only just discovered that my dad was a pupil at the Rathbone until he left to attend St Mary’s Edge Hill when he was eleven. I’m so glad there are people here in Liverpool interested in preserving our history. Sad the school was demolished though.

  6. Anne Parry nee Brown I was pupil at Rathbone between 1945-1951 and would love to have the words of the school song which was put to the tune Londonderry Air. can anyone help? Please

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