(Contributed to the School Magazine in 1901)
MRS. MILLET, 1836.
“My sister and I went to school at Salisbury in the early part of the year 1836. Miss Bazeley, who was Mistress of the Godolphin School, took private pupils also, of whom we formed a part. The School when we first arrived was at Arundel House, in the Close, but a short time afterwards (in March, I should suppose) Miss Bazeley moved into the King’s House. I remember very well the evening when we walked from the one house into the other. The King’s House delighted my sister and myself, being very ancient and picturesque, and having been the residence of English Kings in former days when they were hunting in the neighbourhood. The last tenant had been General Shrapnel. There was a large walled garden, and the walls appeared to have been much peppered with shot, which we took for granted was the work of the General. The instruction we received at the Godolphin School was of a sound character. I have never thought of Miss Bazeley but with respect. She had a younger sister named Caroline, who gave assistance, but only of a housekeeping kind, I think. There was a very good Swiss lady who taught French, Mademoiselle Correvon, from Neuchatel. Our music master was Mr. Corfe, the organist of the Cathedral. The dancing master’s name I forget, which is ungrateful, for he deserved to be remembered, being very good-natured and patient. Our drawing master, Mr. Read, was a most uncommon person, so enthusiastic in his art that those of his pupils who were fond of drawing caught enthusiasm from and thoroughly enjoyed his teaching. We went once to see the picture gallery at Longford Castle, and Miss Bazeley took Mr. Read with us, so that we had the benefit of hearing his remarks upon the pictures. I have been trying to recollect the names of our school-fellows. I do not think there were more than fourteen of us, and I doubt being able to recall their names. On the foundation were two Misses Cobbe, who we were told were “founder’s kin”; a Miss Amanda Baynton, a Miss Hornbuckle, and, I think, but am not sure, a Miss Squires. The private pupils were our two selves, two Misses Stockwell, whose father was a medical man in Bath, a Miss Finch, whose father owned and conducted a lunatic asylum not far from Salisbury; a Miss Werge, from Nottinghamshire, Miss Emily Fowle, Miss Georgina Mountjoy Webster. These two last were daughters of beneficed clergymen in Wiltshire.”
At a meeting of Trustees held at the Palace, Salisbury, on Friday, 20th January 1854.
The Bishop of Salisbury (Denison).
The Dean of Salisbury (Henry Parr Hamilton, F.R.S.). Earl Nelson.
T. W. Gilbert, Esq. 11′,. E. P. Kelsey, Esq.
The Rev. W. K. Hamilton (afterwards Bishop).
The Rev. George Radcliffe.
The Rev. Newton Smart. The Rev. William Briscoe.
The Bishop of Salisbury was requested to take the chair.
A letter was read from The Right Hon. Sidney Herbert, M.P., stating his inability to attend.
Mr. Clabon, at the request of the Bishop, read extracts from the Foundation and made a statement as to the Charity Property, and estimated total income at £405, 1s. 0d.
Probable outgoings, £57; leaving £348, 0s. 0d.
12 Young Ladies at £24 £288
Leaving for rent of house 60
It being observed that this left no margin, Mr. Clabon referred to Clause 44, under which the Trustees have power to reduce the number of young gentlewomen or to reduce the payment in respect of each of them. He read letters from Miss Bazeley, the late Governess, and from Miss Polhill, the Governess just appointed by the co-heirs of the Founder :
In answer to your letter which I received this morning, I beg to say that with Mrs. Biggs’ permission I have just resigned my responsible charge of Governess of the Godolphin Ladies’ School to Miss Polhill, she paying me £40 towards the expenses incurred by me for the accommodation of the pupils, and I accepting it in order to avoid trouble and dissension. There is, however, five pounds, due to the lawyer who drew up the lease, which I hope will be allowed by the Trustees. The lease has still nine years to run-but the situation, which induced me to take the house, cannot be equalled anywhere in or around Salisbury either for health or fitness for education. During the seven years of my residence on that Hill, neither myself nor pupils have required medical assistance. On the contrary, no year passed without it the whole twelve years I resided in the Close.
The rent is £54 per annum, taxes and rates about £7, so that the yearly expenses are not above 60 guineas. My successor, wishing new furniture, has obliged me to have a sale, and consequently to leave the house. I have therefore appointed Mr. Charles Radcliffe of Endless Street to act for me, so that any application you may wish to make or information you may require further, he will be happy to answer for me.
With respectful compliments and thanks.
I remain very truly yours,
Bilboa House, Wells,
13th January 1854.
“Milford Villa,” 14th January. (Now Milford Grove, Shady Bower)
In compliance with the suggestion contained in Mr. Fearon’s letter, I beg to state that it is my wish the Godolphin School should be carried on in the house I now occupy, for the reasons I am about to assign.
Indeed, by the healthiness of the situation, my predecessor four years since removed the school from the Close to Milford Hill, entering upon a lease of fourteen years, which lease is now transferred to me; and as I have been at considerable expense in repairing and furnishing with a view to the better accommodation of the pupils, the removal of the school would, of course, occasion me great loss. The situation is universally allowed to be so healthful that it greatly facilitates my obtaining private pupils. I shall be happy at any time to submit a statement to the Trustees of rent, taxes, etc.
I remain, dear Sir, very truly yours,
FRANCES GIFFORD POLHILL.