Higher Grade - Central Modern at College Street/North Road - Schools List, St Helens Connect
Higher Grade - Central Modern Secondary / Comprehensive - College Street/North Road
Originally segregated, boys school in North Road, girls in College Street, back to back, the Secondary school eventually became a mixed Comprehensive in the late 1960s.

College Street (girls) side.

North Road (boys) side

Gerrard (Green).
Bold (Blue).
Walmesley (Gold).
Hardshaw (Red).



Members who attended this school (hover pointer to show years):

15mirrow, alancotham, alexandra, BARB & MAC, Barry Prior, benita2, Brendan, bridger, Clancy, colinwaldron, Dandydotty, Fynn53, Gillianang, hailliday, jeb, JJ1, joan shawbinns, John Ellis, Jonno, kaz, ken canada, king kenny, kitb132, knockaloe, M.Orme, Mafo, MaryR, mickj, norman g, Pam39, phili01, Rainmate, Ray, rayforshaw, rayrob, scoop, sharon lowe, shawbridge, sparky, StanOwen, stewilts, sunbeam, SWIMMER, theoldendays, tonkatoy1, wanderer, warringtonsaint,
The last 15 posts are shown here. See full topic.


2 posts
Sun, 21 Oct 2012, 16:46.

Does anyone remember Elsie Martin, she would have been there around 1941 and had a younger brother called Derek. They lived in Grafton Street.


0 posts
Wed, 5 Jun 2013, 13:17.

I have fond memories of Cenn Mod, Mr ";Wack!!!"; Watts, Sid ";On me!! boys"; Griggs, Jazz ";darkroom"; Taylor, Miss "; I wouldnt Half"; Hughes.
Good days!! end of post war schools, end of an era!!!!

margaret g

0 posts
Mon, 24 Jun 2013, 22:03.

i went to central modern between 1964 and 68, my name then was margaret henderson, my class mates were joan gill, audrey wilson, kathleen cunliffe, susan houghton, well i left st helens when i was only 16, and moved to guernsey in the channel islands, where i met my husband, a guernsey man, and have been here ever since, but i still go back to st helens a lot.was in love with dave friar in the boys school. what ever happend to him, miss mckie wore the same suite every day for four years.good days .


17 posts
Sat, 5 Oct 2013, 16:21.

I always remember my mum and her 2 sisters saying they went here when it was called 'Higher Grade' before it became Central Modern (2 great names for school I think!!) ... my mum was born in 1927 so would have gone here around 1938 to 1942 ( ie during the 2nd world war!) ... I think she left at 15 and joined the WRNS for a a while &; then went to work at the 'Gamble Institute' as a 'comptometer operator' ... (probably almost like the predecessor of today's computers) which is now the st Helens library ... not sure if anyone of that age is on this forum but would be great to see any other comments about the school when it was Higher Grade ...I just remember my mum saying how strict it was at the time ...her name was Joyce Higton and her sisters were Joan and Peggy (Margaret) ...

Barry Prior

0 posts
Wed, 23 Oct 2013, 16:51.

My brother attended this school before me. He attended it when it was Higher Grade and was born in 1930 and I guess it was a great academic school then. But when I attended much later 1958 to 62 the standard was not good. People in the top classes got a reasonable education but had to go on to the tech to get any real qualifications. I was in the C class which was almost the bottom so virtually got ignored academically.
I found it amusing when years later the High Master of Manchester Grammar School asked me whether I had attended West Park or a public school in the area and I said Central Modern. He said he had never heard of it.


0 posts
Mon, 6 Jan 2014, 2:08.

I attended Central modern from 1960 -1964. My favourite teacher was Mrs Moses she took Geography as was also my form teacher in my final year. Another favourite was Miss Cathcart who got me hooked on history. We used to jump the wall at the morning break and cross College street to visit Beryl's shop for a penny drink. Never got caught - we would have been scull dragged if we had have been as it was a strict school if you were in the higher streams (A or B ). I loved school and Central Modern didn't do me any harm. Now live in New Zealand and have done since 1971 but visit St Helens almost yearly.


0 posts
Mon, 6 Jan 2014, 2:10.

Does anyone know of Daddy Edwards who taught in Higher Grade Boys? This would have been around 1936 or there about. He is a relative and would love some information about him.

sharon lowe

0 posts
Fri, 24 Jan 2014, 19:37.

I had the happiest time ever at this school I was in 2b when I started in1965,having come from rivington road which I hated with a vengeance , in all my time there I only ever had two weeks off in total , my first form mistress was mrs moorhouse sharon lowe


0 posts
Sun, 7 Sep 2014, 14:38.

I enjoyed my time at Central Modern, I must have done because I went on to teach in a secondary school.


24 posts
Sat, 29 Nov 2014, 16:32.

Attended 1941-1944. headmaster was Billy Ingham very harsh with the cane, also other teachers were: Rick Valkman who taught maths and music, Fanny Haigh- History, Miss Newman, Humpy Thomson-Maths, Mr Finch, he took us for swimming lessons. Miss Price-took us for French. Mr Hill taught Chemistry, very strict. We went to the old Minning School for woodwork, also, to the Gamble Institute for Chemistry lessons. Another teacher was Daddy Edwards always dressed in cap & gown, he carried a cane which he smashed against his gown with a frightful noise. He taught geography, good teacher, didn't often use his cane

We used to play wall tennis on a marked out wall and floor unfortunately there was a drainpipe on the wall and sometimes the ball hit the pipe !!! good fun Visited the old playground last week what was left of it, almost covered by buildings, however, the markings of the wall tennis court where still there including the drain pipe.


0 posts
Thu, 15 Jan 2015, 23:57.

Higher Grade i was in the infamous 3B Hamblett house


1 posts
Sun, 19 Apr 2015, 14:44.

Attended 1955/1959 and well remember standing on the heating pipes in school classroom to view the boys at playtime. Watching the boys come in to practice dancing for their last year school dance,longing for when the day when I was old enough to dance with the boys THEN the year and day came:- we had to stand in a line and face the boy and they would walk over and choose a girl. No one chose me!!!!!! My mother made me a yellow velvet dress for the dance and I asked my twin brother to tell his friend to dance with me. Sometimes the girls would meet in the park at boundary road and play football with the boys on a Saturday afternoon. We would walk to boundary road baths for swimming lessons(which I hated). A memory I have is of a very tall girl in the year above me I long to be like her. The French teacher was a very kind lady and she would bring me magazines with bridgett Bardot in because she new I liked her. All the teachers deserve medals as they instilled respect, responsibility and life skills. Wish I could meet them again to tell them so face to face.


0 posts
Wed, 21 Oct 2015, 8:51.

Had a great time at Cennie Mod, from 1969 - 1974 when the playgrounds were still separated.


0 posts
Tue, 29 Mar 2016, 19:33.

@ Dave


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