By the 17th century, many churches had schools - using the porch, rooms above the porch, or in the tower.
In some villages, parish or charity school-rooms were built in the churchyard.
In these, some fortunate local boys learned the basics of reading, writing and arithmetic.
However, the schools depended on the availability of an enthusiastic curate or qualified layman, and many of the schools were short-lived.
(text and images courtesy of Heritage Inspired)