St Joseph's College, Ipswich
|Motto||Fides Labore Et Tenacitate
("Faith, Work and Tenacity")
|Type||Independent day and boarding school|
|Former pupils||Old Birkfeldians|
The college is situated near the centre of Ipswich in extensive grounds, on the site of Birkfield House. The grounds of Goldrood House and the Birkfield Mews, now boarding houses and infant school, were a later addition to the college.
The school was originally founded by the Brothers of the De La Salle order as a boys' school. In 1995 it merged with a local Catholic girls' school to form the coeducational school it is today. Goldrood was the home of the Alexander family, from 1811 till 1850. The family business was initially that of ship owners in the Iron and Corn trade. In 1850, Alexander family has been murdered in Goldrood house, the husband and wife were murdered in the ground floor, being first clubbed and then having their throats cut, and the children were stabbed upstairs...
Since May 2000, the college has undergone a programme of refurbishment and reorganisation and improved its facilities and resources, including a new teaching and learning centre, science computer atrium, new arts and photographic suite, computer networking, a music technology suite and enlarged boarding accommodation.
An even more recent refurbishment programme took place in 2007 with a multi-million pound, state of the art, eco-friendly, junior school being built. Goldrood House has now gone back to being a boarding house instead of Hilbrow House that was off of the college's campus.
The College has used various house systems throughout its history. In the current system, there is no strong house rivalry, as in many other independent schools, due to the nature of the school as both coeducational and containing a mix of boarding and day students.
Currently, there are four houses:
- De la Salle (Blue)
- Thevenet (Yellow)
- Xavier (Red)
- Celsus (Green)
An earlier version of the system which was in use in the 1980s and 1990s had four houses named after major figures in England’s Roman Catholic history:
- Campion (Green; named after St Edmund Campion, an English Jesuit and martyr)
- Sherwin (Blue; named after St Ralph Sherwin, an English martyr)
- More (White; named after St Thomas More, English lawyer, politician and martyr)
- Beckett (Yellow; named after St Thomas Beckett, an early archbishop of Canterbury and martyr)
There are three boarding houses: Hillbrow House, The Mews and Goldrood House. The Mews and Goldrood are located on campus and house senior school students. Most boarders board full-time.
The Old Birkfeldians is the Alumni Association of St Joseph’s College. It is named after the site of the original school (Birkfield House). It has been merged with the Alumni Association of the old Junior School (Old Oakhillians).