We had a country seat! Ok, I lied:-)- we never had one. The St.Mark’s School had.
St.Marks School was once a part of us, a preparatory school that was a place where young teachers could practice before they were deemed good enough to teach. It became separate in 1954 when it moved from Chelsea to Fulham. The story of St. Mark’s Preparatory School is one that deserves an entry on its own, and the old building has to be seen to be believed.
And now- the Fen House in Gorefield. The old vicarage building looks so gothic that it should come with its own vampire in residence. Don’t worry, it was blessed by Lord Bishop of Ely when it was opened in 1971 as the country annexe of St.Marks School. The Gorefield house boasted a large common room, its own kitchen and dining room, 3 dormitory-style bedrooms for pupils and one for teachers and
other facilities including the laboratory and a large playing field. The annexe was used for many different kinds of field work- local history, nature& wildlife, environmental and industrial studies and many other. From the house, pupils used to go on field trips, visiting places such as: to Ely cathedral, Denver Sluice, Cambridge and Shuttleworth Collection of Aircraft. Every student of the St. Mark’s School was to visit the house as a part of the learning experience and produce a diary of their experiences. I would have loved such break in school monotony as a child. I wonder if they had?
I’m not sure when the school got rid of it. As for today, the house is a B&B, called The Old Vicarage. It looks incredible and cosy. I am so very tempted to visit it.