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College History – The Early Years, 1760–1864

Alderman Richard Taunton (1684–1752), Wine Merchant, Privateer, and former Mayor of Southampton, had left a bequest in his will to be used for "bringing up children in work and industry, fitting them for place at sea".

To satisfy Richard Taunton's wish, the money was used to pay for up to 20 boys (10–14 yrs) "to be taught reading, writing, arithmetic and navigation and, at their proper ages, apprenticed to sea going mariners". The first boys joined with pupils of a private paying school, kept by Mr John Linden. In these early days, the scholar apprentices, together with the fee payers were taught in the houses of Mr Linden and subsequent masters.
In the 18th century, the money left by Richard Taunton was used, on occasions, to apprentice girls as well as boys.
The Constitution was amended to 10 Foundation scholars to be prepared for apprenticeships "having affinity to the sea", so widening employment to ship building, rope making, etc.

[From 1839 onwards, the State began promoting free public education and by 1849, nine 'Schools' had been established in Southampton providing free elementary education paid for from local rates, for boys and girls.]

5-6 Grove Street
5–6 Grove Street
Scanned from Spooner History
  65 High Street (c.1860)
65 High Street  (c.1860)
Copyright © Southampton City Council

Mr W B Clarke provided a home for Taunton's scholars from 1847 to 1851, in his school at 5–6 Grove Street, although he was never appointed Master.
There was a further revision of the Constitution to allow boys to be bound to whatever trade they or their parents wished. The Charity appointed Mr Hoddinott as Master, the first to teach both Scholars and fee payers at premises hired by the Charity. The first venue was 65 High Street, the former home of Mr H R Hartley (later the site of the Hartley Institute, the forerunner of University College and now Southampton University). Subsequently, the School and Master moved to larger premises in Windsor Terrace.

…| New Road, 1864–1926 | Highfield, 1926–1993 | Taunton's College, 1989–Present

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