Fourscore School

Fourscore School

The Rev. Charles Watson in his book "Glenavy: Past and Present" (1892) makes reference to an area known as the Fourscore:

This place, so named on account of a four-score acre field, lies near Knockcairn, and possesses one of the finest country schools in the parish. Before being built, the school was held in a building at the Ligger Bridge, on the road to Crumlin, the walls of which were pulled down about two years ago. The foundation stone of Fourscore was laid by Fortescue Gregg, Esq., on July 12, 1837. The Orangemen attended in great numbers, George Lyons, Master of Lodge 340, Thomas Green, Robert Thompson, John Wickliffe, Wm. John Smyth, David Gray, and Thomas Wheeler being among the number. It was not opened till 1840, owing to Mr. Gregg’s death. The school-room and teacher’s residence were, however, completed by subscription. Mr. William Scott, uncle of the present Mr. William Scott, of Fourscore, was the first teacher. It was then under the Church Education Society, but the Rev. Ross Jebb, Vicar, placed it under the National Board. When the Rev. Edward Johnson-Smyth came to the parish, in 1852, he again put it under the Church Education Society; but, in 1885, it was again put in connexion with the Board by the present vicar, after many improvements, to which the people generously subscribed. The teachers have been Messrs. W. Scott, William Boston, John M’Farland, W. Crawford Bradshaw, and now Mr. James Farr occupies that post. Near Fourscore lives Mr. John Wickliffe, who, though in his 86th year, never misses attending the parish church and the meetings of the select vestry. His wife, who is a year older, is still both chatty and cheerful.

The Fourscore lies within the townland of Ballymoneymore. The 1830’s Ordnance Survey map records the acreage for this townland to be just over 146 acres.(146 acres and 1 perch). There are a number of prominent forts marked in this town land. These three forts appear as raths on modern maps now. The current Fourscore Orange Hall occupies the site of a former schoolhouse and is located at the junction of the Tullyrusk Road and what is known locally as "Codger’s Lane". On the 1830’s map there appears not to be a building at this point and the Four Score School House is marked NNW of this location at a place known and marked as "Ligger Bridge". This confirms the Rev. Watson’s account of the Fourscore.

Fourscore School Foundation Stone

Fourscore School Foundation Stone

Fourscore Orange Hall, 2007

Fourscore Orange Hall, 2007

Glenavy Temperance Society Meeting

The following extract is from the Belfast Newsletter dated 19th September 1862 and appears with permission of the Belfast Newsletter.

Glenavy Temperance Society – Monday evening last, this society held a meeting in the Fourscore School-room. The Rev. E.J. Smyth, Vicar of Glenavy, presided. The attendance was large. The chairman opened the proceedings by offering up prayer, after which he made some interesting remarks on the object of the society. Mr Smyth, son of the worthy Vicar, then delivered a powerful maiden address on the evils of intemperance and the good results of abstinence from all intoxicating beverages. The address was frequently greeted with hearty applause. It was a pleasing sight to behold father and son side by side advocating the great principles of temperance. One of the zealous curates of the parish was also present. Mr. Davis, the agent of the Irish Temperance League, next addressed the meeting in a practical speech on the necessity of the temperance movement to the working classes. After a vote of thanks to the chairman, devotional exercises were engaged in, and the proceedings terminated. Five persons gave in their adhesion to the cause.

Glenavy Total Abstinence Society

The following extract is from the Belfast Newsletter dated 3rd February 1864 and appears with permission of the Belfast Newsletter.

Glenavy Total Abstinence Society – On Thursday evening inst., a most successful meeting of this society was held in church at Femore – the Rev. E.J. Smythe, Vicar of the parish and president of the society, in the chair. The Chairman, Master William J. Smythe, Rev. Francis Cooper, and Mr. Pyper, from the Irish Temperance League, severally addresses the meeting. A resolution in favor of the Permissive Bill, to be introduced into Parliament during the ensuing Session, was proposed by Mr. Joseph English, of Crumlin, seconded by Mr. Jonathan Peel, of Lakeview, and unanimously agreed to. At the close of the proceedings eighteen new members joined the society. On the following evening, Friday, the 29th January, another meeting of the society was held in the Fourscore Schoolroom, near Knock cairn – the Rev. E.J. Smythe, Vicar, in the chair. After a short address from the Rev. Mr. Cooper, Mr. Pyper delivered a most convincing lecture. Eight new members added their names to the register on this occasion. A resolution in favor of the Permissive Bill was proposed by the Rev. J. Cooper, seconded by Master William Johnston Smythe, and unanimously adopted. – Corr.

Fourscore School and Zenana Missionary School

The following extract is from the Lisburn Standard dated 26th November 1910

Parish of Glenavy

A meeting in connection with the Church of England Zenana Missionary School was held in the Fourscore Schoolhouse, Glenavy, on the 15th inst., and in spite of a sharp snow storm the attendance was very encouraging. The meeting having been opened with a missionary prayer and hymn, the lecturer, Rev. Alex. Miller, rector of Hilltown, proceeded to give an address on the evangelistic work carried on in the zenanas of India by lady missionaries, lady doctors, and Bible women. The lecture was illustrated by excellently coloured slides supplied by the society, and for over an hour the earnest attention of the audience was well maintained. AT the close, the chairman (Rev. J. Boyle-Glover_ when thanking the lecturer for his most instructive, address, referred to the increasing interest taken in foreign missions by many in the parish. A most helpful and interesting meeting was brought to a close with the benediction.

Fourscore School – 1939

Fourscore School 1939

Fourscore School 1939

Fourscore School – late 1930s-early 1940s

Fourscore School late 1930s - early 1940s

Fourscore School late 1930s – early 1940s

Fourscore School – late 1930s-early 1940s

Fourscore School late 1930s - early 1940s

Fourscore School late 1930s – early 1940s

Sunday School Prize

Sunday School Prize, 1946

Sunday School Prize, 1946

The inscription reads:

Fourscore Summer Sabbath School
presented to

for good answering
and attendance
year 1946.

This inscription appeared in the book "England Before the Restoration" by Lord Macauley.

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