Children have turned the clock back 150 years dressed in their best Victorian garb to mark a very special milestone in a school's history.

The pupils had a Victorian dress up day at Churchfields Junior School in South Woodford to mark its 150th anniversary.

The school is planning a birthday disco for the 480 children and arranging a reunion in June for former pupils and staff.

“We can’t wait to gather our community to mark this special year,” headteacher Rebecca Emeny said. “We hope each child, staff member and parent will contribute to this milestone.”

Other events include a whole-school photograph to be taken in May. They already had ‘all class’ snaps in their Victorian dresswear, like the children back in the 19th century.

Romford Recorder: Pupils dressed up in Victorian clothes to mark the occasionPupils dressed up in Victorian clothes to mark the occasion (Image: Churchfields Junior School)

Trips were also made to the Ragged School Museum in Mile End in February, housed in a former school for the poor set up by Dr Thomas Barnardo in 1867 in an old canal warehouse now restored with Victorian classrooms.

Churchfields was founded in 1874, originally as a boys’ school, on land that was part of the old Woodford Hall estate, sold by auction in 1871. The local school board bought four of the 34 plots for £420.

A girls’ school was added and later an infants' school that opened in 1885.

The dining hall and canteen were built in 1949 and a nursery was added in 1975. The present school was built in 2009.

Churchfields has always had a sense of community and history, with the headmaster keeping a weekly log of school events.

Romford Recorder: A Victorian school photo recreatedA Victorian school photo recreated (Image: Churchfields Junior School)

The log books were dusted down in 1974 to mark its centenary year, with entries for the whole 100 years except two months in 1939 during the first wartime evacuations.

They record “other major upsets perhaps lie before us” in the post-war years with concerns that a new Snaresbrook primary was going to “reduce our catchment area” and “our own rebuilding seems now to be more remote”.

But the fears were alleviated with investment in the school’s expansion for Woodford’s growing population.

Romford Recorder: Further celebrations are plannedFurther celebrations are planned (Image: Churchfields Junior School)

The staff lists showed “the remarkable record of only four headmasters in 100 years”. Other long service records included the school manager from 1894 to 1922, school secretary from 1958 still working in 1974, the caretaker 1934 to 1963 and a canteen supervisor 1954 to 1973.

The log books “make fascinating reading of a bygone age,” the headmaster noted in 1974.

“We look back at these shadows from the past, just names in the fading pages of rather worn volumes who contributed to Churchfields as we know it today.”

The school plans to bury a time capsule in the summer.