The BWI Archives

The Managers' Minute Book


Ruislip Church of England School
Managers’ Minute Book 1864-1903
General Introduction

The London Metropolitan Archive preserves a number of documents relating to Bishop Winnington Ingram CE Primary School and its predecessor, the Ruislip Church of England School.  Included in these documents is a ‘Minute Book’ maintained by the ‘Committee of Managers’ between 1864 (shortly after the acquisition of land from Eton College and the erection of a new school building in 1862) and 1903 (Acc/1035/01).

The Minute Book has the title “Church of England / Day School / Eastcote Road / Ruislip"

Minute Book of meeting of Managers, 1864 – 1903.  This appears to have been added by Mr Dixon-Smith, the BWI Manager and Correspondent in the middle years of the 20th Century.  

On the inside cover has been added in a different hand:


On the inside cover has been added in a different hand:


School No. 3659  




Dimensions of Rooms



1 – 52 x 19



2 – 19 x 19     







3 – 21½ x 18½



4 – 15 x 15      

(measurements in feet and inches)

Room 1 would correspond to the combined boys’ and girls’ rooms in the 1862 plan.
Room 2 would appear to correspond to one of the two side rooms (with gallery over)
Rooms 3 and 4 could relate to the other side room and the gallery space, alternatively it could be a reference to the school after the building was extended in 1883 (cf. meeting of 17th November 1883)    

A typewritten note has also been slipped in mentioning the building of the 1862 school and questioning whether minutes were kept between 1862 and 1864.  It is perhaps worth noting here that London Metropolitan Archives, Acc/1035/02 is currently missing from the box that contains Acc/1035/1 through to 9. However, this is unlikely to be an earlier record of minutes, since the Archive would presumably have numbered such a book ‘1’ in the Acc/1035 sequence.  Other than identifying that Acc/1035/02 was some form of Minute Book, there is no other description of its contents.  

While there have been several brief references to the Minute Book in the past, we are now making a full transcript available. In making this transcription we have used the following editorial methods:

  • The book has no page or folio numbers.  We have supplied foliation, beginning with the first page as fol.1r and fol.1v.  We have prefaced the record of each meeting with a folio location.  

  • Capitalisation is irregular in the original.  We have adopted capitals for nouns relating to roles (i.e. Manager, Master, etc.) but elsewhere used lower case (e.g. schools rather than Schools).

  • The order and layout of introductory material for meetings varies significantly according to the minute taker.  We have adopted a uniform approach: date in the order month, day, year, time if given; location; members present, usually on two lines with any clergy listed on the first line, other Managers on the second.  There are a few places where introductory material departs significantly from this pattern; in these cases, the original has been retained.

  • Abbreviations have been expanded (e.g. ‘etc’ for ‘&c.’, ‘January’ for ‘Jan.’, ‘should’ for ‘shd’ and so on.)

  • Where the manuscript has corrections, we have adopted the final reading. 

  • Where there are clearly errors, these have been silently corrected.


The following terms occur in the Minute Book and require a brief comment:

Monitors were more able older children employed to teach a group of younger pupils under the direction of a qualified teacher.  Introduced independently by Andrew Bell and Joseph Lancaster, there were slight variations between their two systems.  The Ruislip school would have adopted the practice of the National Society, which followed Bell’s methods.

Pupil Teacher
A pupil teacher would be in paid apprenticeship to a school for a period of four years during which time there would be annual examinations.  Government regulations required the pupil teacher to receive one and a half hour’s instruction each day, usually delivered by the Master before the start of school or after its conclusion.  Being a competent Monitor often led to becoming a Pupil Teacher.

Assistant Teacher
An Assistant Teacher was not necessarily a fully certificated teacher. In some cases it might be someone who gained a Queen’s Scholarship to proceed to a twelve month course leading to a ‘Government Certificate’. In this case, such a teacher would be fully qualified. Alternatively, it might someone who has completed a Pupil Teacher apprenticeship, and gained a post as ‘Assistant Teacher’ for two or more years, with an examination at the end of each year – eventually leading to full certification.

Master & Mistress
The school required at least one fully Certificated teacher. This was invariably a man, the Master, who occupied the School House, oversaw the running of the school, taught a group of pupils, and provided the Pupil Teachers with their daily tuition. At Ruislip the post of Master included the expectation that he would be accompanied by a wife, who could also teach -  the Mistress. Amongst her duties would have been the teaching of needlework – a compulsory subject for girls at that time.   

The 'Revised Code' and the Annual Report
There are many references in the Minute Book to an ‘annual report’.  1862 had seen a change in the way that schools were being supported by State funds.  The ‘Revised Code’ of the Committee of the Privy Council on Education introduced an annual inspection of schools and testing of pupils (often referred to as ‘payment by results’). The results of these inspections determined the grant that would be payable to the Managers to support the running of the school along with money they could raise through local subscriptions from parishioners (cf. 17th March 1877, also copies of the Parish Magazine in the 1890s that itemised individual levels of contribution); and ‘School Pence’ contributed by pupils’ families (see, for example 15th June1878).  Clearly the annual report was of great interest to the Managers and lead to issues between them and the School Master on a number of occasions.
The Revised Code also required the keeping of a Log Book; a transcript of the annual report needed to be entered into the Log Book. Individual sections of the Code were identified as ‘articles’. As there were a number of minor revisions to the ‘Code’ references either in the Managers’ Minute Book or the school’s Log Book – especially in relation to the employment of staff and to school size - do not necessarily relate to the 1862 version of the Code.


We preface each year’s meetings with an overview of the main areas considered.  In the main, we have not commented on individuals, though a number are well documents in either local or national historical resources.  For example, amongst the former, Edwin Ewer, an active Manager throughout the whole period during which the book was maintained, was part of a well-respected family of farmers (see ‘The Ewers – The last farmers in Ruislip?’, Eileen M. Bowlt, Journal of the Ruislip, Northwood and Eastcote Local History Society, (2006) 1-16, available through the RNELHS website) while the latter includes, Lawrence James Baker of Haydon Hall, a Trustee of the London Stock Exchange and Liberal politician.  As ever, the publications of the RNELHS would be an invaluable starting point for further work on any area of the history of Ruislip.  

It appears that in the main the chairman for each meeting was a member of the clergy, if present. It seems likely that the minutes were written out by the chairman for that meeting, in many cases, probably after the meeting, In most cases, each minute was signed off at the start of the next meeting by the chairman on that occasion.


First uploaded: 8 April 2018