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History of Carlton

We have some great history at Carlton!

Since the 1920s, William Wilson Clark had taken children from Ward Jackson Juniors of Hartlepool camping in the area around the Cleveland Hills. 

In 1929, he took a small group of boys from his school to Pinchinthorpe near Roseberry Topping, a site which they used for the next two years. However, in 1931, the farmer who owned the field in which William Wilson Clark and the boys had enjoyed camping asked them to make that year their last. 

Needless to say, Wilson Clark was hugely disappointed with this turn of events and decided that the next field he used for camping would be his own. Thus, in the autumn of that year, he cycled from Hartlepool to Carlton-in-Cleveland. 

Making enquiries whilst there, he was advised to approach the local vicar, Canon Kyle, who had bought the filed on which the Church School (now Carlton and Faceby C of E School) was built. Mr Kyle offered the field to Wilson Clark for £250. 

On returning to Hartlepool, William Wilson Clark approached the Mayor of the town, Councillor George Turnbull, who agreed to assist in raising the funds for the purchase. A charity was formed and the citizens of Hartlepool contributed to this fund. On the 20th October 1931, the field that the centre now stands in was bought and signed for by William Wilson Clark and two other 'trustees'. The site was dedicated for all time to the use of children of West Hartlepool.

The site was formally opened by the Mayoress of West Hartlepool on the 16th May 1932. The first camping party soon followed, and comprised of a mixture of boys from Ward Jackson, Oxford Street and Church Street schools. Until 1935, all facilities were under canvas, hence the name 'Carlton Camp'. Then funds became available for the creation of the main building, the foundation stone of which was laid by the then Mayoress of West Hartlepool, Mrs H. L. Hogg. 

In 1958, the trustees received a substantial legacy from the will of Mrs Rosa Robson, who had named various charities as recipients of the proceeds of her estate. This allowed the purchase of extra land and the building of two dormitories, each of which could accommodate thirty six children. A third dormitory was added in the 1960s. 

More recently, a modern accommodation block was completed in 2007 consisting of four wings each comprising of three dormitory bedrooms and two staff rooms accommodating a total of 80 resident visitors. The old accommodation was then converted into a classroom and kit storage areas.