History

The School at Huyton, Liverpool (1926 - 1939)
Information About the early years of the school and many pictures can be found by following the link given below:
https://sites.google.com/site/huytonhillschool3/
The school was originally established in September 1926 with 6 pupils at Victoria Road in Huyton near to Liverpool, England. (Co-ordinates: 53.412218N, -2.833303E). It is listed in the Liverpool Schools directory[1] together with the headmaster, Hubert D. Butler[2]. (Note that the school had its entrance on the north side of the site onto Victoria Road, whereas the present school has its entrance on the south side of the site off Seel Road).
The school is listed in the Liverpool & S.W. Lancashire telephone directory 1931, page 27 as:
"Butler Hubert D,Boys Prep Schl,Huyton hill.Huyton 105"
 

 
The school motto was “I will with a good will”, which set the tone for the ethos of the school and the way it was run.

It was the first school in the country to host its own aircraft landing strip as reported in Flight Magazine[3]. Hubert Butler had previously served in the Flying Corps in World War I as 2nd Lieutenant Flying Officer.
 
Here is an extract from the 'Lost Villages of Liverpool - Part 3 by Derek Whale:
"The Headmaster of Huyton Hill Preparatory School was responsible for an exciting pre-war development in Huyton...he constructed an airfield there. The airfield or landing strip as it was then occupied the 25 acre field adjoining the school, where it stood in Victoria Road. The idea was conceived by Mr. Hubert Butler so that his pupils might gather an early knowledge of aircraft.. For its inauguration on 1st July 1932 the name Huyton Hill was laid out in concrete. Although the airfield was private, the Luftwaffe considered it important enough to have it marked on their maps as GB 10 833 Landplatz Huyton Hill. St. Aiden's Church situated on what would have been the northern boundary of the airfield incorporates steel girders in its structure which were once part of the hangar at Huyton Hill."
      
Flight Magazine July 8th 1932, p635       The school site in 1927                                     The school site in 2006 (Google maps)
 
Hubert Desramaux Butler became a member of the Incorporated Association of Preparatory Schools (IAPS) in November 1929, as listed in "Preparatory Schools Review", No. 104, Vol. X.[4]
His name also appears in the "List of Members and Articles of Association", IAPS, January 1930, p.5.[5]
In the IAPS List of Members and Articles of Association, May 1951, p.7.[6], the names of both Butler brothers are listed and Gerald V Butler became a member in 1950.
 

The School in the Lake District (1939 - 1969)
In September 1939 at the outbreak of World War II the school was moved to the Lake District where Pull Wood House, at the north west corner of Windermere just south of Pull Wyke (Co-ordinates: 54.408984N, -2.975546E), was rented to accommodate the school. During the war in 1940 the headmaster, Hubert Butler, purchased the house and grounds and continued to run the school until 1969.
The address was:
Huyton Hill School
Near Ambleside
Westmorland
Tel: Ambleside 333 (later changed to 3333)

In the 1949 telephone directory, page 22, before Ambleside numbers were extended to four digits, Hubert Butler is listed as follows:
"Butler Hubert D, Schoolmaster, Huyton Hill Preparatory school, Ambleside 333".  

 

 

The joint headmasters were Mr. Hubert Desramaux Butler and his brother Major Gerald Villers Butler, who joined the school in 1949 after serving as Leinster Housemaster at Portora Royal School at Enniskillin in Northern Ireland from 1926 to 1949. Together the Butler brothers ran the school very successfully for the next 20 years.
After the war the number of pupils averaged 60, and peaked at 74 pupils in 1965 which was near to the capacity of the accommodation, the number reduced to 61 by 1967.
The pupils belonged to Alfred or Arthur houses which created a sense of healthy rivalry and competition amongst the pupils.
Brigadier Gordon H. Osmaston joined the school as the Mathematics teacher in 1948 after serving in the army in Iraq during World War II. Before that he distingushed himself by spending three years (1936–1938) surveying and mapping the Himalayas with sherpa Tenzing[7].
 
   
Pull Woods 1956                                                  Pull Wood House 2006 (Google maps) 
 
School Fees
Hubert Butler aimed to keep the fees below £100 per term, although the extras added up to make the total more than this.
Here is an invoice from August 1959:
 
School Closure
Major Gerald Butler died in 1967 and school continued until 1969 when it was closed.
Hubert Butler converted the house into holiday flats. He died in 1971 whilst working for UNICEF in Swizerland and the ownership passed over to his son.
The house and grounds were purchased by Pullwood Bay Estate in 2002 and it is now named Pullwood House, it is still rented as holiday flats.
   
    
 
An article was published in the Westmorland Gazette in Summer 1969 giving Hubert Butler's reasons for closing the school:
Westmorland Gazette 1969 
A NOTED LAKELAND SCHOOL
The 9 a.m. bugle will be heard no more.
HUYTON HILL TO CLOSE AFTER 43 YEARS
    Every morning at nine o'clock, come rain or
shine, the flag at Huyton Hill School, near
Ambleside, is hoisted by pupils to the sound of
buglers blowing the "school call". Then they call
out the school motto "I will with a good will."
    This is just one of the traditions which will
disappear in July, when the school closes down
after a history spanning 43 years (writes a
Gazette representative).
  The closure is planned to coincide with the retirement
of Mr. Hubert Butler, who has been headmaster of the pre-
paratoty school during all those 43 years.
  The school, which is situated on the north-west shore of
Lake Windermere, has been hit by the Government's Se-
lective Employment Tax. Because Huyton Hill is a private
school, S.E.T. has to be paid for all members of the staff.
        Protest
  Mr. Butler told the Gazette this week: "I am retiring
partly as a protest about ridiculous legislation. If someone
in the north-west region manufacture cigarettes and pays
£1 17s. 6d. S.E.T., then because they are in a develop-
ment area, they will get back £3 2s. 6d.—a net gain of £1. 5s.
But if I try to manufacture good citizens, I pay £1 17s. 6d.
per week for every person I employ, and get nothing back.
And in July, S.E.T. is to be increased to £2 8s."
  Mr. Butler went on to say:
"Things like this make it absurd to invite any young man
to take over a school such as this, and so when I retire in
July the school closes."
  The increasing traffic in the Lake District, both on roads
and on Lake Windermere, is another reason for the closure.
Mr. Butler explained: "One of the things that we have valued
most in the education of our boys has been the weekly
bicycle expeditions to Langdale, Coniston, Grasmere, Thirl-
mere and other areas, for climbs on the Lakeland hills.
But the increased amount of traffic on the roads is mak-
ing this impossible. For the past 30 years, the school has
been lucky enough to have the use of the bay off the school
foreshore to itself, but the increasing boat traffic has
changed the situation."
        Pupils
  "Another reason for closing the school," said Mr. Butler,
"is that I do not agree with the current expenditure of
large sums of money on elaborate science equipment for
small boys. In my opinion, what we need to teach is not
more science but more wisdom to use it."
  The school was established in 1926 at Huyton, near Liver-
pool. Originally, there were four pupils but the number
steadily increased until in 1939 the school was moved into the
present premises, which was built in 1891 for Sir William
Crossley.
  Since 1926, about 400 boys have passed through the school,
many of them from British and American parents working
abroad in such places as Malaya, Borneo, Jordan, Hong-Kong,
India, Rhodesia, Greece, and other parts of the world. In
any year, the distance travelled by boys to and from school
exceeds 300,000 miles.
  The school teaches about 60 boys between the ages of seven
and 14, and great emphasis is placed on outdoor activities
such as climbing, cycling and swimming. Great interest is
taken in music, the school having provided two 13-year-old
harpists for the Westmorland Orchestra. "Our immediate
aims here have been health, happiness and hard work."
commented Mr. Butler.
  "We have made full use of all the opportunities surround-
ing us and have tried to give boys responsibility, thereby in-
creasing their self-confidence and self-reliance."
        Plans
  Mr. Butler is chairman of the Education Committee for
the United Nations Children's Fund in Britain. When he
retires, he intends to devote more time to his work in the
organisation.
  When the school closes in July, he intends to remain at
Huyton Hill to maintain a "central link" for old boys of the
school.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Another article was published in the Westmorland Gazette after the July 1969 Summer Revue:
      -----------------------------------------------------------------------------
 

1.    Liverpool Schools D-K

2.    Liverpool Schools Teachers

3.    Flight Magazine July 8th 1932

4.  "Preparatory Schools Review", No. 104, Vol. X.

5.  "List of Members and Articles of Association", IAPS, January 1930, p.5.

6.  IAPS "List of Members and Articles of Association", May 1951, p.7.

7.  http://www.himalayanclub.org/journal/gordon-osmaston-and-tenzing/

8.  http://www.pullwoodbay.com

 

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