The Liverpool Blue Coat School, also referred to as the Charity School or the Blue Coat Hospital, was the original occupier of the present Bluecoat building in School Lane. The school, set up for the town’s orphaned and destitute children, had been founded in 1708 by the Rector of Liverpool, Reverend Robert Styth and Bryan Blundell, a master mariner, much of whose fortune he invested in the school as it grew. He was largely responsible for funding a larger boarding school to replace the original, smaller building opposite St Peter’s Church. The exterior frontage, and a little of the inside, remain substantially the same as when the school was built between 1716-25.

This collection contains documents relating to Blundell and to those early years of school life, as well as later documents and photographs from some of the almost 200 years that the school was in the building. It moved to new premises in suburban Wavertree in 1906, where it continues today. We have worked closely with the Liverpool Blue Coat School to develop this website and, as well as the material available in this collection, there are many more documents being prepared to go on to the site.

Our other partner in the My Bluecoat project, Liverpool Record Office at Liverpool Central Library, also houses significant Bluecoat material, and some of this is also on the site. Their holding – relating to both the school and the arts centre – is available to view, by appointment.

If you have material about Blue Coat School when it was in School Lane (until 1906) that you would like to share with us, we would love to hear from you, whether it’s an old postcard, a letter from a pupil, a photograph, or even a story relating to a relative who studied here.

1717

Portrait of Bryan Blundell

1717

Narrative of the rise and progress of the Charity School, or Blue Coat Hospital

1717

Latin inscription on the front of the building

1717

Early school graffiti

1890

Blue Coat School dormitories

1890

Photograph of a room at the school

1890

Blue Coat school classroom

1890

School boy at front gates

1890

Girls working in laundry

1890

School refectory

1890

The Blue Coat School Band

1890

Woodwork shop

1889

Record of girls' employment after leaving school

1871

The Bible of Blue Coat School Pupil, William Seed

1903

Pupil's Swimming Certificate

2016

Subscriptions, Schooling and Slavery brochure

1920

Founders' Day Parade

1812

Blue Coat School Visitors' Book

1859

A Sketch of the Origin and Early History of the Liverpool Blue Coat Hospital by John R. Hughes

1743

Boys' admissions and dismissals record

1890

Offsite mealtime

1843

Recollections of the Blue Coat Hospital, Liverpool, St Georges Day

1709

The Ledger Accounts of Bryan Blundell, Founder of the Blue Coat Hospital

2017

Bluecoat: The first 300 years publication

1741

Minute Book of the Board meetings of the Blue Coat School Trustees and Governors, 1742 -1813

1798

Blue Coat School Economy Board Minute Book, 1798-1808

1844

Richard Ansdell (1815–1885), The Boardroom of the Liverpool Blue Coat Hospital