ARTHUR WHARTON, the world’s first black footballer and the first person on the planet to reliably recorded as sprinting 100 yards in 10 seconds, came to Darlington in 1884 as a 19-year-old to attend Cleveland College, as the story of his life in Thursday’s paper told.

Cleveland College was on the top of Boyes Hill – a noticeable rise in the ground just before Milbank Road joins Carmel Road North. It was described as an “elevated, extremely pleasant and salubrious" when principal Henry Brooks built his school on the slight summit in 1869.

Mr Brooks was a director of the North of England School Furnishing Company and his adverts said: "His aim is to impart a thoroughly good commercial and classical education; to cultivate gentlemanly habits; and to combine these advantages with the comforts of a Christian home.”

He had four resident masters, one of whom was a "foreigner" who was teaching German, French and music.

Mr Brooks’ school lasted until 1887, the year that Arthur left. The building was then taken on by the Daughters of Charity of St Vincent de Paul, an order of nuns who ran it as St Joseph's Orphanage. They also had properties in Milton Street and Stanhope Road and they ran the Immaculate Conception secondary school in the former Pease mansion of Southend (now Duncan Bannatyne’s hotel) from 1905 to 1975.

St Joseph’s Orphanage closed around 1968 and in 1972 the 103-year-old building was demolished. Now the townhouses of Milbank Court occupy its site.