Founded in 1876 The now abandoned Leeds Girls High School is situated in Headingley Leeds and was originally built to cater for girls aged between 3-18 years old. Established at a time when female education was on the rise, the school was an independent, selective fee-based school aiming to offer a similar all-round education of the boys tradition, academic grammar schools.
Split into three sections based upon age groups this report features the Senior School which housed the 11 to 18 year old pupils. In 2004 only four years before closure of the site, Leeds Girls High School or LGHS was he highest performing school in the Leeds area in terms of GCSE’s and A Levels.
2005 saw the merger of the school with Leeds Grammar School for form Grammar School at Leeds on an administrative basis and 3 years later in 2008 the school itself closed down.
Things then got a little interesting in 2010 when the Senior School building was transformed into a fictional Hospital named St Matthews Hospital and kitted out internally and externally to form the set of the ITV Medical drama Monroe. Clear evidence of the recent use of the building as a TV set remained with convincing fake tiles walls, changing rooms for the cast, emergency room signs and ambulance bays added to the exterior and a caricature of the star of the show James Nesbitt which were all left behind.
Since around the of the filming and perhaps shortly before intense discussions over the future of the site have been debated with the Council with the largest sticking points being in respect of the grounds and landscaped areas with keen interest in retaining as much as the open space as possible. News reports from June 2015 confirm discussions were underway again with the most recently submitted plans being well received by council members as it involves retention of the Senior school building which will be earmarked to be developed into 36 apartments. Probably just in time as the building remains in pretty good shape.
Visited with Raz, Pete ‘Hands’ Costello Andy de Kay of Behind Closed Doors and Matt, I’d been to this place before but sadly been unsuccessful with finding a way inside. After seeing a few pictures pop up I had to go have a look for myself…
I was really quite impressed with this place and found there was more that I had expected to photograph. There was a really good combination of old school features in particular a significant amount of science laboratories, but there were also some really cool modern parts which had clearly been added as sets for the TV series which they filmed here! Lighting was poor as there were a lot of boarded windows especially on the ground floor but I think we managed to cover most of the good stuff :D. Highlights for me were the cast changing rooms with all the outfits, set plans, scale models of sets etc and the room with the headphones, possibly a screening room I’m unsure… Keep an eye out for the next report which features the neighbouring building Rose Court which had some interesting features of its own…
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