St Joseph's College, Mark Cross

St Joseph's College
St Joseph's College
Location in East Sussex
Coordinates: 51°03′17″N 0°14′55″E / 51.0547°N 0.2487°E / 51.0547; 0.2487
OS grid reference TQ5769730775
Location Rotherfield
Country UK
Denomination Roman Catholic
Former name(s) St. Michael's Orphanage for Girls
Founded 1869 (1869)
Founder(s) Dowager Duchess of Leeds, Louisa Catherine Caton
Dedication Saint Joseph
Functional status Closed
Heritage designation Grade II Listed
Designated 1 February 1991
Architect(s) George Goldie, E. W. Pugin and Joseph Hansom
Closed 1970

St Joseph's College was a Roman Catholic minor seminary in Mark Cross, outside Rotherfield in East Sussex. It was designed by Edward Pugin and the site dates to 1869. It is a Grade II listed building.[1]


It was originally known as St. Michael's Orphanage for Girls and was built in 1869. The exterior was designed by George Goldie and the interior was designed by E. W. Pugin.[1] It was paid for by a donation from the Duchess of Leeds, wife of Francis D'Arcy-Osborne, 7th Duke of Leeds. The site itself consisted of 54 acres of land and it was run by the Society of the Holy Child Jesus as part of a pair of orphanages, the other one being Mayfield College.[1] In 1903, it was extended to allow for more accommodation in the convent, the extension was designed by Joseph Hansom.[1]

In 1925, it was bought by the Archdiocese of Southwark to serve as a minor seminary for St John's Seminary in Wonersh. [2] In 1960, the building was extended to allow for six extra classrooms.[3]


Main article: Jameah Islameah School

In 1970, it was closed and was bought by a group and it became the Legat's School of Ballet, founded by Nadine Nicolaeva-Legat.[4] In 1992, it was bought by a charity called Jameah Islameah. In 2006, it was raided by Metropolitan Police who believed it was being used as a training camp for terrorists.[4] In 2007, it was closed by the Department for Education and Skills for failing standards. It did not have any pupils at the time.[5]

See also


  1. 1 2 3 4 British listed buildings retrieved 17 February 2014
  2. Sacred Heart Church Wadhurst retrieved 17 February 2014
  3. Archive from Catholic Herald retrieved 17 February 2014
  4. 1 2 British 'terrorism training camp' is former Catholic junior seminary from Catholic Herald retrieved 17 February 2014
  5. Terror alert school is shut down from BBC News retrieved 17 February 2014
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