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The RGS Buildings in Eastern Street
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  • Pictures of the old RGS Buildings


  • The Hospital one of two in High Wycombe, was founded in about 1180 and inhibited by a Master and a small community of Brothers and Sisters caring for the poor people of the area.
     In addition, the Master kept aside three beds for the poor or infirm people passing through High Wycombe.
     The first known Master was Gilbert mentioned in 1236 , the last being Charles Chalfont, Master from 1541 until the Hospital was closed in 1548.
     In 1239 permission was given by the Pope for the building of a chapel. By 1344 the Hospital was in the patronage of the Mayor and Burgesses of the town and remained so until the dissolution.
    layout of the original buildings A hospital in the Middle Ages was like a modern almshouse where poor or elderly people could live in reasonable comfort. 
    Such institutions comprised a chapel ( in which prayers were offered daily to the founder ), a hall ( where residents would live and eat ) and probably an infirmary and a range of small cells or rooms for sleeping in.
     The Hospital would of received donations of land and money from wealthy patrons to support it.
    After the closure of St. Johnís Hospital in 1548, the buildings were acquired by the town for a school which opened in 1550. 
    The school was put on a firm foundation by the granting of a Royal Charter in 1562, which still included for the maintenance of four poor persons. Soon after, the poor people were accommodated in the Queen Elizabeth Almshouses, which were erected across the road from the school. 
    These survived until about 1970. The Royal Grammar School used the Hospital buildings until 1883 when the new buildings were erected behind the Hospital. Most of the Hospitalís structure was then demolished leaving the medieval structure that remains till today. (See the associated pictures). 
    The Royal Grammar School used the buildings until it moved to the current location at the top of Amersham Hill in 1915.
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