The sisters of La Sainte Union des Sacres Coeurs arrived in Southampton in 1881 and set up a convent boarding school for young ladies in Archers Lodge, a large building on the corner of the Avenue and Archers Road (image 1). The religious order to which the sisters belonged had been established in 1826 to provide religious education for poor children. The movement spread across northern France and Belgium and arrived in England in c.1856.

The school in Southampton proved popular and successful and steady expansion occurred. In 1904 a residential training college for teachers was established on the same site, housed in a new three-storey red-brick building (image 2). At about the same time the convent school moved to new premises on the corner of Carlton Crescent and Rockstone Place, and eventually became St Anne’s School. Archers Lodge, the original convent building, was destroyed by bombing in World War Two, but the newer buildings were largely undamaged. The post-war expansion of teacher training graduates led in the 1960s to the rebuilding and enlarging of the college premises. In 1997 the college was absorbed by the University of Southampton and renamed New College. In 2006 the university sold the site and it is now housing.

1. La Sainte Union College: Archers Lodge

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The rear of Archers Lodge, the original location of the College, 1881

2. La Sainte Union College

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The original teacher training block, built in 1904.

External links:

Further reading:

LSU 100: 100 years of La Sainte Union in Southampton. (HS/ls)


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