English Martyrs School and Sixth Form College

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
This article is about the school in Hartlepool, UK. For other schools of the same name, see English Martyrs School (disambiguation).
The English Martyrs School and Sixth Form College
English Martyrs School.gif
Motto Per Unitatem Virtus
(Latin for Strength Through Unity)
Established 1973
Type Academy with faith designation[1]
Religion Roman Catholic
Headteacher Mr M Lee BA (Hons)
Deputy Headteachers Mr P McMahon BEd
Mr J Linden BEd (Hons)
Chair of Governors M Mekins Cert Ed
Location Catcote Road
County Durham
TS25 4HA
England Coordinates: 54°40′32″N 1°14′11″W / 54.67551°N 1.23646°W / 54.67551; -1.23646
Local authority Hartlepool Borough Council
DfE number 805/4603
DfE URN 111756 Tables
Ofsted Reports
Students 1637
Gender Coeducational
Ages 11–18
Houses 5 houses
Colours Red, black, gold & white
Specialist School Arts College
Young Enterprise centre of excellence 2011
British Council International School Award 2012-2015
Investor in People
Fair trade School
Healthy School
Telephone Number 01429 273790
Fax Number 01429 273998
Website www.ems.hartlepool.sch.uk

The English Martyrs School and Sixth Form College is a secondary school and sixth form college located in Hartlepool, County Durham with academy status. English Martyrs (referred to locally as "EMS" and "Martyrs") is the only Catholic secondary school in Hartlepool. The school and college are both located on the same site on Catcote Road, however, a newly built specialist sixth form block provides the majority of A-Level classes, as well as some 11–16 school lessons.

In the summer 2013 examinations the school achieved record results - 83% of students achieved 5 or more GCSE grades at C or higher, including English and Maths.


St Joseph's Convent School was founded in 1885, and became a direct grant grammar school following the Education Act of 1944. St Francis RC Grammar School was opened in 1956,[2] and two new secondary schools, St Bede's for boys and St Anne's for girls, were opened in 1963.

St Peter's secondary modern school opened in King Oswy Drive in 1960 replacing St Bega's school. The school had approximately 200 students and the headmasters were Mr Timothy McCarthy, followed by Mr Robert Garraghan.[3]

In 1973, the national policy of Comprehensive education led to all the Catholic secondary schools in the town being merged as the English Martyrs' Comprehensive School. These were St Anne's, St Bede's, St Francis', St Joseph's and St Peter's schools, each of which is represented by a star on the school badge. The new site was the buildings of St Bede's and St Anne's[4] and the St Francis site which was closed down in 1985.[3]

List of previous Headmasters:[5][edit]

  1. Canon John "Dickie" Bell (1973-1980)
  2. David Relton (1980-1995)
  3. Joe Hughes (1995-2010)
  4. Michael Lee BA (Hons) (2010–present)


The following statistics are summarised from the Evening Gazette article Teesside school ratings: The English Martyrs School and Sixth Form College, Hartlepool.[6]
National averages are given in italics after the school's score.

Category 2010-11 2011-12
Number of children on the school roll: 1700 1665
Percentage eligible for free school meals: - 12.4% (16%)
Value added score: 997 (1000) 995.5 (1000)
Ratio of pupils to teachers: 14.5 (16.3) 15 (15.6)
Total school spend per pupil: 5338 (5051) 5438 (6058)
Percentage of budget spent on supply staff: 1% 1%
 % Gaining 5 A*-C GCSEs incl. English and Maths: 72% (59%) 68% (59.4%)
Percentage of pupils missing 15%+ of all sessions: 9.3% (9.5%) 9.4% (6.8%)

Gazette ratings[edit]

September 2013.

Rank out of
3,079 state schools
Local rank Attainment Teaching Behaviour Outcomes
55.37 3 Stars 1,194 1 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 4 Stars

Ofsted ratings[edit]

25 January 2012

of pupils
Behaviour and
safety of pupils
Quality of
Leadership and
Good Good Good Good Good

Aims of the school[edit]

  • "The school exists to educate students in the Catholic faith in the widest sense and is committed to represent Christian family values. Its primary aim recognises that it is a faith community, believing that each individual in it is on a pilgrimage of growth. As a Christian community the school tries to embody Gospel values of love, justice, forgiveness and reconciliation. Decisions concerning the curriculum and relationships will be based on these values. The Governors will expect applicants to contribute to the development and maintenance of this ethos."[7]
  • "The basic aim of the school is to serve the children of the community educationally, pastorally and spiritually, and to develop in each individual student a full range of academic, sporting and cultural talents; to develop within the school a true sense of community spirit which will form a foundation for the students’ future lives in the wider community, and to do these things in a Christian environment, enriched by our Catholic tradition."[7]


Main School[edit]

Admissions Criteria 2013

The majority of secondary school students come from 6 feeder primary schools, which are:

  • Sacred Heart School
  • St. Bega's School
  • St. Cuthbert's school
  • St. John Vianney's School
  • St. Joseph's School
  • St. Teresa's School

Sixth Form[edit]

6th Form College Prospectus 2013-2014

  • If you obtain 5 grade Cs or better at GCSE then you can choose any Level 3 course i.e. an A Level or an Applied A Level course
  • If you obtain 4 grade Cs or above at GCSE then you are advised to follow a double award Applied A Level course, plus additional AS subject/s
  • If you obtain fewer than 4 grade Cs at GCSE then you are advised to follow a Level 2 course - either the BTEC First Diploma in Business or in Health and Social Care


There are five houses within the school: St John Boste, St Margaret Clitherow, Blessed John Ingram, St Anne Line and St Thomas More. In the same way as the earlier St Francis RC Grammar School had named its houses after the English Martyrs, in 2009 the houses of the English Martyrs School were introduced and named after the following. Prior to this introduction, Saints John Boste, Margaret Clitherow, Anne Line and Thomas More all existed as houses in the school's PE department for use during sports days and athletics tournaments, however they were unconnected to the pastoral or academic care of pupils.

St John Boste[edit]

St Margaret Clitherow[edit]

  • Saint Margaret Clitherow who was crushed to death by rocks in York in 1586 for harbouring priests.
  • House colour: BLUE

Blessed John Ingram[edit]

  • The Blessed John Ingram who was executed in Newcastle-on-Tyne in 1594 as a priest ordained abroad, an act of high treason.
  • House colour: GREEN

St Anne Line[edit]

  • Saint Anne Line who was hung at Tyburn in 1601 for harbouring a priest.
  • House colour: RED

St Thomas More[edit]

Subjects Offered[edit]

Lower School - Years 7, 8 and 9[edit]

Subjects studied

  • English
  • French
  • Geography
  • History
  • ICT
  • Mathematics
  • Physical Education
  • Religious Education
  • Science

Upper School - Years 10 and 11[edit]

Compulsory GCSEs

  • Double Award Science
  • English Literature
  • English Language
  • Mathematics
  • Religious Education

Optional GCSEs

  • Biology
  • Business Studies
  • Chemistry
  • French
  • Geography
  • German
  • History
  • Physical Education
  • Physics
  • Statistics

Other optional GCSE-level qualifications

  • Engineering
  • iMedia Certificate & Diploma
  • OCR National ICT

Sixth Form - Years 12 and 13[edit]


  • Art and Design
  • Art Textiles
  • Biology
  • Business Studies
  • Ceramics
  • Chemistry
  • Computing
  • Critical Thinking
  • English Language
  • English Language and Literature
  • English Literature
  • Extended Project Qualification
  • Food Technology
  • French
  • Further Mathematics
  • General Studies
  • Geography
  • German
  • Graphic Design
  • History
  • ICT
  • Law
  • Mathematics
  • Media Studies
  • Music
  • Music Technology
  • Performing Arts
  • Photography
  • Physical Education
  • Physics
  • Product Design 3D
  • Product Design - Textiles
  • Psychology
  • Religious Studies and Philosophy
  • Sociology

Applied A-Levels

  • Applied Business
  • Health and Social Care - Double & Single Award

Level 2 Certificate

  • CACHE for Children & Young in Health & Social Care

Level 3 OCR Nationals and Diplomas

  • ICT OCR Nationals
  • Creative iMedia
  • BTEC Level 3 Diploma in Sport

None Examined Compulsory Course

  • General RE (Morals, Ethics & Theology)

Annual School Events[edit]

Annual Awards Evening Principal Guests 1981-2012[edit]

A tradition of the school since 1981 where awards are given to students of both the school and sixth form college for reasons including: "excellent attendance, reliability, hard work, social and academic progress, caring for others, academic excellence and artistic, cultural and sporting achievements. Recognition is given to achievement at GCSE, 'A' level and GNVQ levels."[7] There are prizes donated by local individuals and groups as well as Huntsman Tioxide, Teesside University and The Daily Telegraph. Each year attracts over 1000 guests and a Principal Guest of Honour "who themselves represent achievement in a range of fields". The evening also features music by the school orchestra and individual student musicians with refreshments to end the night.

Annual School Show[edit]

Another tradition of the school is an annual school musical, usually held around the end of November. This features pupils from all years, although older students and sixth formers generally get the leading roles. The music department, orchestra and drama department work together on its production. Tickets are made available to parents throughout the school to buy.

Annual John Bell Lecture[edit]

This now traditional once a year lecture is usually given around March in the school's St Anne's hall. The lecture is in honour of Canon John Bell, the last headmaster of St Francis and the first headmaster of the new English Martyrs school, and lasts around 40 minutes followed by audience questions. Complimentary tickets to attend are made available free of charge.

Principal Guests, School Shows and John Bell Lecturers[edit]

Year Start
Awards Evening Principal Guest[7] School Show John Bell Lecturer Headteacher
2013 Graham Onions Jesus Christ Superstar David Eagle, Alumnus and member of the sea shanty band the Young Uns[8] Michael Lee
2012 Stuart Whincup, BBC Look North with special guest Savannah Marshall. Beauty and the Beast Chris Joseph, Alumnus and autobiographer [9]
2011 Tony Mowbray We Will Rock You Jez Lowe, Alumnus and folk musician [10]
2010 The Right Reverend Séamus Cunningham, Bishop of Hexham and Newcastle Les Misérables[11] Anne, Tony and Declan Stokle [12]
2009 Philippa Gregory Oliver! Father Phil Marsh [13] Joe Hughes
2008 Wendy Gibson, BBC presenter Grease Joy Yates, Editor of the Hartlepool Mail [14]
2007 Peter Beardsley MBE Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat
2006 Jonny Wilkinson OBE Bugsy Malone Chris Gorman, Alumnus and entrepreneur [15]
2005 The Right Reverend Kevin Dunn, Bishop of Hexham and Newcastle The Wiz [16]
2004 The Right Honourable The Lord Puttnam CBE FRSA Little Shop of Horrors
2003 The Right Honourable The Lord Alton of Liverpool
2002 Lady Tanni Grey-Thompson DBE
2001 Niall Quinn
2000 Simon Weston OBE
1999 Philip Madoc
1998 Kevin Whately Ann Widdecombe DSG PC, Shadow Home Secretary[17]
1997 Tessa Sanderson CBE
1996 Ronnie Corbett CBE
1995 Bob Holness Journey to the Center of the Earth[18]
1994 Sir Ron and Lady Norman David Relton
1993 Susan Cunliffe-Lister, Countess of Swinton DSG DL Baroness Masham of Ilton
1992 The Right Reverend Ambrose Griffiths, Bishop of Hexham and Newcastle Peter Mandelson PC, MP for Hartlepool [17]
1991 Jeremy Beadle MBE
1990 Frank Carson KSG The Boy Friend[18]
1989 Sir John Hall Oklahoma![18]
1988 Sir Cyril Smith MBE
1987 Peter Egan
1986 His Eminence Cardinal Basil Hume
1985 Major Sir Denis Thatcher MBE TD My Fair Lady
1984 Dr David Bellamy OBE Calamity Jane
1983 Brian Clough OBE
1982 Lord Longford KG PC
1981 Miles Fitzalan-Howard, 17th Duke of Norfolk
1980 New creation.
1979 John Bell
School founded.

Notable alumni[edit]

Name Occupation/Notable Achievements
Paul Arnison Professional footballer
Kieran Bew Actor
Paul Brennan Actor
Daniel Cook Organist at St David's Cathedral
Matthew Dolan Professional footballer
Janick Gers Guitarist in Iron Maiden
Chris Gorman Entrepreneur
Michael Gough Retired cricketer and cricket umpire (umpire of the year 2011)
Corporal Owen Paul Green MBE (acting sergeant), Corps of Royal Engineers
Peter Hartley Professional footballer
Steven Hetherington Professional footballer
Dr Jim Hodgson FRCGP GP
Michael Hunter British, European and Commonwealth Bantamweight Boxing Champion
Chris Joseph Sufferer of bipolar disorder and author of "Manicdotes: There's Madness in His Method"
Andy Linighan Professional footballer (scorer of the winning goal in the 1993 FA Cup Final)
Brian Linighan Professional footballer
David Linighan Professional footballer (captain of Ipswich Town)
Jemma Lowe Olympic swimmer
Jez Lowe Successful musician, specialising in folk music with at least 15 albums to his name (St Francis)
Steven Magee Principal bassoonist in the Hallé Orchestra
Savannah Marshall Olympic boxer and boxing world champion
Philip Middlemiss Actor (Des Barnes in Coronation Street)
Professor Gerard Parkin FRSC Professor of Chemistry, Columbia University
Dr Elizabeth Pender Senior Lecturer in ancient philosophy, University of Leeds, author of "Images of Persons Unseen: Plato’s Metaphors for the Gods and the Soul"
Professor David Thwaites Professor of Epithelial Physiology, Newcastle University
Kevin Walsh Paralympic swimming bronze medallist

External links[edit]


  1. ^ Academy Conversion, www.ems.hartlepool.sch.uk, 12 May 2014
  2. ^ Saints and sinners, G. Hall, 2005.
  3. ^ a b Details about English Martyrs Rc Comprehensive School And 6Th Form College, Hartlepool History Then and Now.org,
  4. ^ Hartlepool, Northeast England, 1885–1985, Sr Bernadette Cassidy FCJ.
  5. ^ A celebration of school’s 40 years, 2 July 2013.
  6. ^ Teesside school ratings: The English Martyrs School and Sixth Form College, Hartlepool, Lee Madison, 30 September 2013.
  7. ^ a b c d English Martrys School and Sixth Form College's official website
  8. ^ Parents Bulletin February 2014, English Martyrs School, February 2014
  9. ^ The John Bell Lecture
  10. ^ Folk singer a smash hit, www.hartlepoolmail.co.uk, 9 May 2012
  11. ^ Show goes on for students, 23 November 2010.
  12. ^ Talk by Burma campaign family, www.peterleestar.co.uk, 10 March 2011
  13. ^ "Students inspired by global leader", www.hartlepoolmail.co.uk, 12 March 2010
  14. ^ Mail editor to be guest speaker at school, www.hartlepoolmail.co.uk, 2 March 2009
  15. ^ Back to school for millionaire., www.highbeam.com, 9 March 2007
  16. ^ Waiting for sentence, www.hartlepoolmail.co.uk, 16 November 2005
  17. ^ a b John Bell Lecture 2013.jpg
  18. ^ a b c SLIDESHOW: Rolling back the years for English Martyrs School’s birthday treat, 11 July 2013, www.hartlepoolmail.co.uk