Shade Primary School

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Knowlwood Road, Todmorden, Lancashire OL14 7PD

01706 812913

Shade Primary School

Every Child, Every Chance, Every Day

  1. About Us
  2. Our History

Our History


The school is situated in the small community of Shade which is near to the centre of Todmorden.

It was built in 1904 and was a shining example of the latest ideas in education including open-air staircases and its own swimming pool. We're glad to say that the staircases now have windows and are nice and warm. The swimming pool is still used by Shade Pupils as well as neighbouring schools and is well used through a programme of lessons to the wider community.

The area is named after the "wood-shade" that was erected during the construction of the 'Great Wall of Todmorden' as part of the engineering works to bring the Rochdale Canal through Todmorden.
Consisting of a smithy and yards for stonemasons and carpenters - the building dwarfed the only other building in the area, a block of 3 small cottages. The local accent saw the name shortened to 'I'm going t'shade" and the name has stuck ever since. It's not because we never get any sunlight!

Many sites of historical interest surround the school. A hundred years ago, the town of Todmorden was a crucible of industry and commerce, filled with cottages and mills. Todmorden became one of the most important mill towns in the region and the huge increase in workers led to the building of new schools in the town. The Todmorden School Board drew up plans as early as 1902 for a new school in Shade.

Today Todmorden retains many small businesses and a strong market. Visitors to Todmorden seek out historic or scenic sites or choose to walk in the heather on the quiet moors. Nearby, the Pennine Way passes over Stoodley Pike, and many walkers pass through on their way to Haworth and 'Bronte Country'.