Maidstone Grammar School
|Motto||Olim Meminisse Juvabit
"One day, we'll look back on this and smile" from the Aeneid 1.203
|Type||Foundation grammar school|
|Headteacher||Mr M Tomkins BSc NPQH|
|Chair of Governors||Mrs Lindsey Evans|
|DfE URN||118835 Tables|
|Former pupils||Old Maidstonians|
The school takes boys at the age of 11 and over by examination and male and female students at 16+ on their GCSE results. The school currently has almost 1200 students and approximately 120 members of staff. The school holds both a Language College award and a Healthy School award. It is situated just off Loose Road (A229), west of Mote Park and the Mote Park Leisure Centre.
The main school building is around a Tudor-style quadrangle with a cloister on one side. A new block was added in the 1960s. A sixth form and arts and crafts block was added in 1981. This newer building completes a second quadrangle. In 2005, a new refectory and teaching block of 15 classrooms was built. As well as over 100 classrooms, there are twelve science laboratories, a language laboratory, seven computer centres, a set of music rooms, lecture theatre, gym and sports hall as well as a canteen. A new 'Applied Learning Centre' is also in use and houses several new editing suites, this was finished in the 2010/2011 school year, with a similarly styled 'Food Technology' and Sixth Form block having recently been opened (16 September 2011).
A house system was first inaugurated in 1899, with three houses, School, East Borough and West Borough. By circa 1900 these house were again revised this time based on geography with East House being for those boys east of the river, West House for those boys on the western riverside and School house for the townspeople and boarders. In September 2007, the school saw the continuation of this tradition with the introduction of six School Houses. The six houses are named Challenger (purple), Churchill (yellow), Endeavour (red), Hurricane (green), Invincible, (blue), and Spitfire (white). The winners of both the inaugural house and charities cup in 2007/2008 year were Churchill, and for the first time in the 2008/2009 year the winners of the house cup were Challenger. In 2011/2012 Invincible House won both available cups (in the absence of the sports day cup): the charity cup and the house cup.
The sixth form is one of the largest in the South-East. Each year the school takes up to 200 students into Year 12, including around thirty external students (mixed gender), accepting students from any school according to their GCSE results. The sixth form offers AS and A2 courses in a wide variety of combinations.
Combined Cadet Force
The school has a Combined Cadet Force, with Navy, Army and RAF sections accepting students on a voluntary basis when they reach year nine. The Cadet Force, in particular the Army section, has roots in the Royal Engineers.
The school song, Gaudeamus, was written in 1908 by music-master Dr HF Henniker, ARAM to Latin words by the Headmaster at the time, Rev C.G. Duffield MA. It continues to be sung today, at Speech Day and other occasions, and is well remembered by those who attended the school.
Scholam concinamus nostram
Maidstonesi urbe impostam,
Rege Eduardo ante hos tam
Longos annos conditam.
Laudibus et efferamus
Scholam nostram, quae oramus
Forsan olim meminisse
Nos juvabit, et vixisse
Dignos illis quos fuisse
Laudibus et efferamus
Scholam nostram, quae oramus
The Maidstonian is the school's annual publication of reports, articles, news and original contributions. Originally simply a record of every member of staff, as well as each pupil and his form, The Maidstonian has evolved into a publication that is written by pupils, for pupils. Editions include information about any staff that left or joined the school that academic year, reports from the CCF, Music Department, sports teams as well as diaries from foreign trips. Original contributions, mainly poetry, prose and artwork, feature heavily. The "Quote-Unquote" section remains a firm favourite with students and staff alike, however, as of the 2010/2011 issue, this section has been discontinued.
Former pupils of the school are called "Old Maidstonians" and include:
Art, music & literature
- William Alexander (painter)
- Daniel Blythe, writer
- James Butler (artist) MBE, sculptor
- Philip Langridge CBE, tenor
- Philip Moore, Organist of York Minster from 1983–2008, Organist of Guildford Cathedral from 1974–83
- Christopher Smart, poet
- Yeborobo, musical group (members thereof)
Media, television & film
- James Burke, science TV presenter
- David Chater, television foreign correspondent and former Chairman of the Old Maidstonian Society
- Andrew Dilnot CBE (briefly), Principal of St Hugh's College, Oxford since 2002, and former presenter of BBC Radio 4's More or Less
- James Hillier (actor)
- Shaun McKenna, screenwriter
- Stuart Miles, Blue Peter presenter from 1994-9
- Tom Riley, film and television actor
- Captain Ben Babington-Browne, of 22 Engineer Regiment of the Royal Engineers, killed on 6 July 2009 after a Canadian Bell CH-146 Griffon crashed in Zabul Province, Afghanistan
- Lt-Gen Sir Frederick Dobson Middleton CB, Commandant from 1874-84 of RMC Sandhurst
- Air Vice-Marshal Philip Hedgeland CB OBE, expert in airborne radar, Station Commander from 1966-7 of RAF Stanbridge, and helped develop the H2S radar in the war at the Telecommunications Research Establishment in Malvern
- Air Marshal Sir Timothy Jenner CB, Station Commander of RAF Shawbury from 1987-88
- Charles de Salis, wartime intelligence officer
Politics & government
- Sir Samuel Egerton Brydges, MP from 1812-8 for Maidstone
- Nick Gibb (briefly), Conservative Schools Minister 2010-current, and MP for Bognor Regis and Littlehampton since 1997
- John Pugh, Liberal Democrat MP since 2001 for Southport
- Adam Sampson, Legal Services Ombudsman since 2009, and Chief Executive from 2003-89 of Shelter
- Mark F. Watts, Labour MEP from 1994-9 for Kent East, then South East England from 1999–2004
- Rt Rev David John Atkinson, Bishop of Thetford from 2001-9
- Leo Avery
- Rt Rev Bob Evens, Bishop of Crediton since 2004
- George Harris (Unitarian)
- Very Rev Robert William Pope OBE
- Martin Warner (bishop), Bishop of Whitby since 2010
Science & academia
- Peter Day, Fullerian Professor of Chemistry from 1994–2008, and Director of the Royal Institution from 1991-8
- Frank Finn, ornithologist
- Peter Heather, historian
- Geoffrey Hosking, Professor of Russian History from 1984-2007 at University College London
- William Morfill, Professor of Russian from 1900-9 at the University of Oxford
- John Orrell, theatre historian
- Bill Saunders, Professor of Endodontology, and Dean of Dentistry since 2000 at the University of Dundee, and President from 1997-8 of the British Endodontic Society
- David Flatman, Bath Rugby Union player
- Tom Parsons, Kent and Hampshire county cricketer
- Frank Sando, Olympic athlete
- Steven Haworth, wrestler also known as Nigel McGuinness and Desmond Wolfe
- Richard (Dick) Beeching, Baron Beeching, who oversaw the closure of many railways in the 1960s
- Julius Brenchley, explorer
- Francis Fane, 1st Earl of Westmorland
- Sir Thomas Fane,
- William Golding, author of Lord of the Flies, taught English and Music at the school between 1938 and 1940, when he met his wife Ann Brookfield.
- Brownfield G.The Maidstone Grammar School a record 1579-1965,Phillips
- Streatfield F, an account of the Grammar School in the Kings town and parish of Maidstone in Kent, Rogus and B,1915
- Maidstone Grammar School Website, School Song, accessed 27 May 2006
- Heart Radio
- Ben Babington-Browne
- "Air Vice-Marshal Mike Hedgeland obituary". Telegraph. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Clare Horton. "Head of Shelter, Adam Sampson, quits to helm new consumer watchdog | Society". theguardian.com. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Scotland (15 August 2008). "Biography of William Saunders". Universitystory.gla.ac.uk. Retrieved 5 April 2014.