Marking historic school

The Mayor of Fylde John Singleton with former head mistress Margaret Ritchie and mayoress Geraldine Singleton MBE.
The Mayor of Fylde John Singleton with former head mistress Margaret Ritchie and mayoress Geraldine Singleton MBE.

A landmark Fylde school has been commemorated with the unveiling of a blue plaque.

Fylde mayor Coun John Singleton, St Annes town mayor Coun Karen Henshaw, Fylde MP Mark Menzies and former headmistress Margaret Ritchie were among the guests at the unveiling ceremony at the former Queen Mary School for Girls.

The plaque

The plaque

The school, opened in 1930, merged with the adjacent King Edward VII School in 1999.

The premises in Clifton Drive South have since been converted into a luxury apartments, with the imposing facade preserved.

The plaque is the latest to be installed at local buildings by Lytham St Annes Civic Society and follows similar unveilings recently at St Annes railway station, to mark the fact that leading railway engineer Nigel Gresley was married in St Annes, and the former public health offices in Clifton Drive South.

Ann Boddis, of the Civic Society, said: “We have a programme of blue plaques around the town and are delighted that Queen Mary School and the wonderful building it occupied is being commemorated in this way.”

The plaque is the ideal way to commemorate our links with the past

The cost of the plaque is being covered by St Annes Town Council, while the company which manages the current development at the site, has also made a contribution,

Deana Whalley, president of the Queen Mary School Association, said: “The blue plaque is an important mark of recognition for all those thousands of former pupils whose formative years were spent within those walls and on those sports fields and also for those remarkable women who taught there and directed generations of women to become valued members of society.

“The school community was fortunate to enjoy an imposing building which was always beautifully maintained with fresh flowers along the corridors and works of art along the walls.

“Now there are apparently some residents of Queens Manor who do not know that it was once a girls’ school.

“The blue plaque is the ideal way to commemorate our links with the past and help to ensure that its place in Fylde’s history is not forgotten by future generations.”

Coun Henshaw said: “It was a privilege to be at the ceremony and it is a building of which all of us in St Annes are very proud.

“I attended Arnold myself but I have many happy memories of attending Queen Mary for sports matches.

“They were always keenly contested but we were always assured of a very warm welcome.

“The blue plaque is a wonderful way of ensuring its history is marked for posterity.”