Spotted via Andrew Brown’s blog:
I presume that these are the people who are occupying the former Princess Louise Institute building on Hales Street in Deptford, which used to belong to my church, the Shaftesbury Christian Centre. History time: the building was condemned by a surveyor some years back and finally sold by the church’s parent organisation the Shaftesbury Society last year. You can see some pictures of the church clearing out the building prior to the handover here.
The actual Ragged School was actually on a different site, now home to the nearby housing blocks, but was Deptford’s main school in the era before state education. Christian people of the day used to come together to educate the local street urchins, and often found that they had to feed the kids before they could teach them anything, they were so starving. I have some historical photos kicking around somewhere which I must post. They clearly show the reason the operation was called a Ragged School – they kids’ clothes were little more than rags. (More about Ragged Schools here.)
When the state took over education, the Ragged School became the PLI and then the SCC, and is still a functioning worship community today.
Slightly surprised to see a condemned building in use, but more power to them…