Rhyl Emmanuel British School, records of

Scope and Content

Rhyl Emmanuel British School was opened on 27th February 1865. The School was officially opened by John William Jones C M and 80 children were admitted on the first day, both boys and girls.

The Vale Road site of the original school was donated by W.S. Conwy and recieved a government grant and subscriptions to become established. The architect was Mr Johnson of Birmingham and the builder was J Rhyd -Wen Jones. The school building was erected at a cost of £782. There were 80 pupils on roll on the first day. By the first anniversary of the school there were 150 roll and Mr John William Jones was the head teacher. Subsequent head teachers were Joseph Owen - 1869, Evan Lewis - 1870, Owen Thomas - 1879, George Nuttall - 1884 - who was head teacher for 35 years.

In April 1931 the school was transferred to new buildings (Victoria Road?) and increased its numbers with children being transferred from several other schools - with 350 on roll and rising the school - called New Emmanuel School officially opened on 9th June 1931. It had the latest equipment including cookers for domestic science. The log book refers at this point to 'schools' and it is possible that infant, junior and secondary (compulsory school leaving age since 1918 had now been 14) were all on the same site.

By May 1932 there were 438 pupils on roll. Evidence that there was now a senior division of the school is seen in the log book -ED/LB/115/4 as Standards V, Vl, and Vll (age 14) are referred to.

Log book ED/LB/115/5 begins in March 1938 with a new name for the school - Emmanuel Central School and head teacher W.L. Richards. It opened with 134 boys and 157 girls divided into 8 forms - ages 11 plus in 3 forms, ages 12 plus in 3 forms and ages 14 plus in 2 forms.

At some stage the school was renamed again as Emmanuel Modern Secondary School and by 1950 the head teacher was Dan Owen. The secondary modern school appears to have existed until 1956. Pupils would then have the possibility of Rhyl County School which became Rhyl Grammar School and finally Rhyl High School. Those who didn't pass the 11+ examination were likely to have gone to Glyndwr Modern Secondary School . Emmanuel County Primary School remains on the Victoria Road site.

The building-

The original Vale Road building of Rhyl Emmanuel British School was used during the war and up to the 1950s as a mother and baby clinic.

In 1956 the Rhyl Welsh School was established on the Vale Road site with Haydn Thomas as head teacher .This was the first Welsh medium secondary school in Wales begun with 94 pupils. In 1957 this very popular school moved to a new site at the empty Epworth College on Rhuddlan Road, eventually moving again to a new school site in St Asaph - Ysgol Glan Clwyd in 1969.

The former Epworth College is now known as Ysgol Dewi Sant which was first established in 1949 as the first Welsh medium primary school in Rhyl. The old Vale Road site of the school was demolished in 1963 and a purpose built 'Little Theatre' housing Rhyl Children's Theatre Club was established. This building still exists today (2016).


Street name- Victoria Road, Rhyl (previously Flintshire up to 1974)

Ordnance survey - 25 inch OS map (Flintshire) Emmanuel school is on sheet 1-14 3rd edition

Please note: most of this collection was deposited in Flintshire and was transferred to Denbighshire Archives on 17th Dec 2014.


School records are arranged as follows;

1. Log books

2. Admission registers

3. Attendance registers

4. Managers minutes

5. Accounts

6. Plans

7. Photographs

8. Miscellaneous

Access Information

All school records containing personal or sensitive information are closed for 75 years. This includes log books, admission and attendance registers and some minute books.

Geographical Names