Courtenay House School (as it later came to be called) was conducted in 1851 at 22 High Street by the five daughters of Jane and Benjamin Luxmoore* - Mary Jane, Emma, Helen, Hester and Ann Luxmoore.
The Luxmoores were a well-respected Crediton family of long-standing and Benjamin's father had been a serge manufacturer in the days when weaving had been Crediton's principle industry. But as the Devon Wool Trade declined, the children of the family were forced to look elsewhere for their livelihoods. From Pigot's 1823 Directory, we know that Benjamin was a printer, bookseller and stationer. From the local press and other directories, we know that he became manager of the local bank and clerk to the magistrates before his death in 1843. At this point, his wife and five unmarried daughters found themselves having to earn a living.
It seems that the widowed Jane took over the stationer's shop in the High Street, one of his sons - John Vellacott Luxmoore - took over the adjoining printing business and the five sisters turned the house at the rear of those premises into a successful boarding school for young ladies which came to be called Courtenay House School. In addition to the girls, there also seems to have been a small preparatory department for boys.