Royal Masonic School – August 2012

Author Priority 7 - Last updated: 03.10.2012

The Royal Masonic School for Boys was an independent school for boys in England. I used to drive past this campus on a weekly if not daily basis so after seeing Landie’s report from site I just had to pop my head around the remaining corridors to see what the old boy was like. Visited in the excellent company of OMJ, Headflux and a non member.

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1798 saw charities being set up to help cloth and educat the sons of needy Freemasons. Originally education was provided by sending those boys to schools near to their homes. By 1857, after the consolodating of two such charities a purpose built masonic boys’ school was set up in Wood Green.
1903 saw the construction of a new school in Bushey with a Junior School being added across the road in 1929. Student numbers hit 800 by 1939, hoiwever following a decline in pupil numbers the junior school closed, the site is now occupied by an Academy. The decline in numbers continued, eventually the senior school was forced to close in 1977. The United States International University (European Branch) used the site for a brief period. The buildings were frequently used as film sets with the likes of Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life, Lucky Jim, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade and numerous TV shows using the impressive architecture as a backdrop. Developers bought the around 1998 and after long delays in gaining planning approval over half the site hase been lovingly renovated to look like new, with the encompassed apartments carefully crafted to compliment this stunning building. I am quite surprised that the site seems to have been overlooked by the Urbex community until recently, and despite the remaining "dead" areas being stripped back to finish the renovation it isn’t hard to imagine how grand this building truly was.

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Cheers for looking

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