Elan Court, 36 Newark Street

Former school built in 1842, Alfred Richardson Mason, architect, Tudor-Gothic detailing, converted to flats in 1995

Alfred R. Mason, church school architect
Contributed by david2 on Jan. 30, 2019

During a training excavation that I supervised on Allen Gardens, Buxton Street, an NVQ Level 3 student (Josh Frost) discovered that the school on which we were working (now demolished and buried) was designed by the same person that designed the Newark St School - Alfred R. Mason - and that both schools were built to the same plan. The school in Buxton Road was All Saints Church of England Schools and is partially illustrated in Survey of London's Spitalfields volume  Figure 43a:

Josh Frost passed his Level 3 NVQ and now works for the Thames Discovery Programme: http://www.thamesdiscovery.org/contact/josh-frost

Elan Court (former St Philip’s National School), 36 Newark Street
Contributed by Survey of London on Feb. 17, 2020

St Philip’s National School was founded to serve the district of St Philip’s Church, providing accommodation for 250 boys, 160 girls and 100 infants. Ground opposite the church on the south side of Newark Street was sold by the London Hospital to Brasenose College, the patrons of the living. Joseph Heathcote Brooks, the incumbent of St Philip’s, subsequently advertised a subscription to raise £2,000 to cover the costs of construction. Large donations were received from the East India Company, the Mercers’ Company and the London Dock Company, along with the local brewers Trumans and Charringtons. The foundation stone was laid in August 1842. The school was built to designs by Alfred Richardson Mason, the hospital’s surveyor. Mason was also the architect of St Peter’s National School in Cephas Street, and Mile End and All Saints National School in Buxton Street, both built in 1839–40. As there, he adopted a plain Tudor Gothic style at St Philip’s, marking the central bay with a crow-stepped gable and a pair of octagonal piers rising to finials. Despite these similarities, the schools differed in plan. St Philip’s School had a T-shaped footprint comprising a narrow front range concealing a rear block that was flanked by boys’ and girls’ playgrounds. On the ground floor, the central entrance opened into an infants’ classroom. Larger classrooms for boys and girls were in the two-storey rear block. The upper floor of the front range provided a committee room and residences for a schoolmaster and schoolmistress. A kitchen and cloakrooms were in the basement. The school was transferred to the School Board for London in the 1870s but closed after the opening of Rutland Street Board School in 1885. By 1895 the building had been adapted to use as a church institute, for mission meetings, community groups, welfare organizations and fundraising initiatives. The eastern bay was incorporated into the adjoining vicarage. In 1995 the rest of the building was converted into ten flats called Elan Court.1

  1. London Metropolitan Archives, Y/SP/93/01/A–H; Y/SP/93/17/A–G; Y/SP/93/15/A: Post Office Directories: Bridget Cherry, Charles O'Brien and Nikolaus Pevsner, The Buildings of England, London 5: East, 2005, pp. 440,468: F. H. W. Sheppard (ed.), Survey of London, vol.27: Spitalfields and Mile End New Town, 1957, pp. 265–88: Royal London Hospital Archives, RLHLH/S/1/3; RLHLH/D/1/44: Morning Post, 19 March 1842: Morning Chronicle, 12 Aug 1842: East London Observer, 2 Dec 1893; 8 June 1901; 20 June 1903: Tower Hamlets planning appliactions online, including Nicola de Quincey, ‘Heritage Statement: 36A–38 Newark Street, Former Vicarage of St Augustine with St Philip’s Church, Stepney, London’, March 2016 

Historic England list description for 36 Newark Street
Contributed by Amy Spencer, Survey of London on Aug. 26, 2016

Excerpt from Historic England list entry for 36 Newark Street (listed at Grade II):

1. NEWARK STREET E1 4431 (South Side) No 36 and 36A TQ 3481 15/497

II GV 2. 1842. Formerly a school. Gothic style, grey brick with white stone dressings. 2 storeys, 5 bays, the outer 2 and centre advanced.

Nos 28 to 42 (even) form a group with St Augustine with St Philip's Church, Stepney Way.1

  1. Historic England, National Heritage List for England, list entry number: 1065094 (online: https://historicengland.org.uk/listing/the-list/list- entry/1065094, accessed 26 August 2016).