In October 1849, the Sisters Faithful Companions of Jesus, were invited by Dr Brown, Vicar Apostolic for the Northern District, to set up a first class boarding school in Wirral. The sisters took out a 14 year lease on Lingdale House in Claughton, and on October 10th 1849, twelve sisters and 24 pupils moved from Great George's Square in Liverpool to the new boarding school. They also opened a "poor school", Bishop Brown's diary notes:
...FCJ derived their support from a Boarding School and also maintained a Poor School for the benefit of the neighbourhood...
The school prospered in Lingdale House, and the FCJs looked at the possibility of buying the property, however, due to legal difficulties, this was not possible, so in 1858 the sisters started looking for a new home for their schools.
Lingdale House in Claughton
Eventually Upton Hall was found and bought on December 8th 1862. Before they could move in, a new three-storey building had to be put up, on the top floor of this building was a small Chapel. Bishop Brown blessed Upton Hall and its new extension on June 17th 1863.
The Sisters and pupils moved to Upton Hall between the 17th and 19th June 1863. The Chaplain, Rev John Coulston, brought the Blessed Sacrament from Lingdale House to Upton Hall on 20th June 1863 and the following day the first Mass since the Reformation was celebrated in Upton.
Aerial View of Upton Hall Convent School in 1937
The timetable for 1903 shows that school started at 8.00am and finished at 5.30pm each day, Monday to Saturday. Lessons lasted for 30 minutes each and subjects included Algebra, Arithmetic, Euclid, Trigonometry, Scripture, Doctrine, French, German, Latin, Literature, Composition, Grammar, Needlework, Singing, Harmony, Botany, Geography and History.
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