Arthur Gillat Bramhall, a family man, headteacher and his time in Stowupland.


A.G.Bramhall was head master at Stowupland Elementary school for 21 years, from 1901 to 1922. He had previously been at Stonham School for 5 years. In 1911 he is living in the school house with his wife of 27 years, Evangeline, his 2 daughters and his mother-in-law Hannah Newbold. His 2 daughters (Maude  b. 1885 and Winnifred May b. 1891) are assistant teachers.

He had been born in Sheffield, having qualified he was headmaster at Walkley St Mary in 1882 where he conducted the Walkley Military Band. Health reasons necessitated a move to the country. Once in Suffolk he became a ‘teacher’s champion’ and pioneered school gardens.

He often read the lesson in the church service

Thanks to Neil Langridge we have this image of the notes from the  first meeting of the Stowupland Council School managers on July 4th, 1903 (with the transcript below). Today we might refer to them as the school governors.

hand written documents
Transcript of 1903 first meeting of stowupland Council School managers meeting

A birthday card sent from one of his daughters, (Nell)  to her sister Winifred in 1907. Winifred and her older sister Maude were assistant teachers at Stowupland but we don’t know where Nell was or what she was doing.. His son emigrated to Canada. (Our thanks to Neil Langridge for spotting and purchasing this off Ebay for £9.40 in 2020.)

Mr Bramhall supported Margaret Catchpole in her teaching path, writting letters of recommendation

Arthur Bramhall was Stowupland’s head master throughout WW1. The following are extracts from Stowupland’s school Log Book and Manager’s Minute Book.

  • 23th July, 1915 – “prizes given for essay on the causes of the war”.
  • 6th May, 1916 – “Lesons [sic] in self-sacrifice, duty (including duty of economy) and patriotism followed by the singing of the national anthem and salutes were made to the living and departed village heroes.”
  • 6th June, 1917 -” School was closed for one day as a ‘wartime cookery’ was held.”
  • 24 September, 1917 – “The children by sanction of the LEA devoted the day to a blackberry expedition. The proceeds by the decision of the children to be given to the Red Cross.”
  • 27th June, 1917 -” Rev S.A.Bell brought some papers respecting the formation of a food production society for the village”.
  • 6th February, 1918 – “Allowed misses [sic] Flory, Burch and Venn to leave 10.30 to get names and particulars…for rationing scheme.” (NL2018)
  • Before 1914 he had conducted the Stowupland Instrument Society
  • In 1921 he was on the Parish Council, one of the signatories to the leasing of Spoonman lands from Stowmarket Charity Estates (see Spoonmans)
  • He also conducted the Stowupland Choir, they won the Bunwell Burton Shield at Ipswich  5 times (in 1922 the shield was still in the school)
  • He had been president of the East Suffolk County Teachers Association
  • President of the Ipswich and District Teachers Association
  • Teachers representative on the East Suffolk Education Committee for 3 1/2 years prior to his retirement
football program
Details for Stowmarket Swifts Football Club 1923

In the 1920s Mr Bramhall was president for the Stowmarket Swifts Football Team. Their headquarters was The Duke of Wellington Pub

In 1935 he died at his home in Clapgate, Ipswich, 11 years after retiring.

In 1935 a memorial service, taken by Rev Chapman, for Mr A.E. Bramhall was attended by members of the Phoenix Lodge No 516 and the Ala Lodge no 5043 of Freemasons.

press cutting
1935 newspaper report on Mr Bramhall's funeral service