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Gladstone Junior School

A Grade II Listed Building in Cathays, Cardiff

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Latitude: 51.4972 / 51°29'50"N

Longitude: -3.1829 / 3°10'58"W

OS Eastings: 317982

OS Northings: 178252

OS Grid: ST179782

Mapcode National: GBR KHF.87

Mapcode Global: VH6F6.SM6L

Entry Name: Gladstone Junior School

Listing Date: 22 October 2001

Last Amended: 22 October 2001

Grade: II

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 25825

Building Class: Education

Location: Set back from Whitchurch Road with Infants block to SE, and on the W side of the junction of Cathays Cemetery, Pentyrch Street and Whitchurch Road.

County: Cardiff

Town: Cardiff

Community: Cathays

Community: Cathays

Built-Up Area: Cardiff

Traditional County: Glamorgan

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Built 1899-1900 for the Cardiff School Board by E.W.M. Corbett, architect to the Bute Estate. The contractor was W. Thomas & Co of Cardiff. Corbett modified his design for Roath Park Board School of 1894, retaining the Queen-Anne style favoured by School Boards during the period, but adding assembly halls.


Queen-Anne style 2-storey school of red St Julian brick with Hartham Park Bath stone dressings and slate roof with panelled brick stacks. The front comprises 5 main gabled bays, advanced to the ends. The upper storey has pilasters on guttae to a moulded freestone cornice over the ground-floor windows. The cornice and sill bands are continuous around the side elevations. Each main bay has triple 2-light windows, stepped to the upper storey, with wooden mullions and transoms and small-pane glazing. The central bay has, in the upper storey, a window to the centre under a round-headed tympanum with '1900' in raised numerals to a cartouche, and 2 blind panels beneath a cornice. Keyblocks to the upper-storey windows carry subsidiary pilasters up to the cornice. The gable has a single step with scrolled sides and obelisk finials, and a pediment with cartouche bearing heraldic chevrons in relief.

The bays L and R of centre have shaped gables, while the outer pilasters are crowned with obelisk and ball finials. On the outer sides of the bays are lower projecting 2-storey porches built against the advanced end bays. These have paired small-pane windows facing the front, with drip stone in the lower storey, and cornice over the upper storey at the base of the parapet concealing the roof. Doorways are in the side walls and are reached up stone steps with coped parapet walls. The doorways comprise double boarded doors beneath small-pane overlights. Each has an entablature framed by corbelled pilasters and with 'Boys' in engraved letters, beneath a segmental pediment on consoles.

In the end bays the outer pilasters are full-height. In the upper storey the central window has a round-headed tympanum with cartouche. Keyblocks to the windows carry subsidiary pilasters up to the cornice of the pedimented gable. Above the outer windows the gable is stepped with scrolled sides and obelisk and ball finials. Above the central window are 2 blank panels and the pediment.

The R (NW) end wall has, on the R side, a 5-window advanced gable. It has 2-light windows to the centre and ends and single-light windows R and L of centre. Set back on its L side is a 2-light window in each storey. The windows have sill bands, cornice over the lower storey and drip moulds over the upper storey windows.

The rear, facing the playground, has gabled end bays, between which is a projecting 2-storey hall block flanked by lower 3-storey wings that project slightly further forward. The 5-bay hall has buttresses with gabled offsets, and 2-window bays with segmental-headed openings, in the upper storey retaining original small-pane glazing and incorporating pivoting lights. The lower storey has replaced windows over an added single-storey kitchen. The hall has a bellcote to the SE gable end, of ashlar with pediment. The bell opening is camber-headed and recessed beneath a corbel table. Below the bell opening are 2 vents. The NW gable end has a reduced stack.

In front of the wings flanking the hall are integral porches, their roofs concealed behind coped parapets. The R-hand porch has segmental-headed 2-light casement window facing the playground. Its R end wall has double boarded doors under a segmental head, and freestone inscription band engraved with 'Girls' and framed by corbelled pilasters. The plainer L-hand porch has a 2-light window to the front and replaced door to the side wall. The lower 3-storey wings, housing offices in the middle storey, have roofs concealed behind coped parapets. The wings have similar window details. Facing the playground are 2 segmental-headed cross windows in the lower storey, two 2-pane sashes offset to the inner sides above the porches in the middle storey, and 3 segmental-headed cross windows in the upper storey. The 3-window side walls have freestone banding, small-pane cross windows in the lower storey, paired 2-pane sash windows in the middle storey and small-pane cross windows above.

The L-hand (NW) end bay has a gable projecting on brackets set back from the main angle. In each storey is a segmental-headed 2-light window offset to the R side. The R-hand (SE) end bay has, in each storey, 3 segmental-headed small-pane windows incorporating hopper and pivoting lights, wider to the centre. The 3-window SE end wall has an external brick stack is R of centre. To the L of centre are three tall 2-light small-pane windows in the lower storey, above which are two 2-light windows carried above the eaves beneath a coped gable, with a lower 2-light window to the R beneath the eaves.


The school was planned to accommodate girls in the lower storey and boys in the upper storey. Both storeys are similar in plan, having classrooms reached from a central corridor with assembly halls on the S side that were also used as gymnasia. The upper storey hall has 5-bay collar beam roof with iron tie rods. From the porches at the front are close-string staircases with glazed-tile dado to the boys' school. From the corridors are half-lit panelled doors to the rooms, flanked by glazed screens incorporating pivoting lights.

Reasons for Listing

Listed as a prominent Board School now rare in retaining its original character and, with the detached Infants School and Cathays Library, providing historic integrity to the Cathays townscape.

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