Bingley Grammar School

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Bingley Grammar School
Motto Passing on the torches of learning
Lampada Tradere Nostrum Est
Established 1529
Type Voluntary Aided community school
Headmaster Luke Weston
Chair of Governors Chris Conderson
Location Keighley Road
West Yorkshire
BD16 2RS
53°51′21″N 1°50′46″W / 53.85579°N 1.84604°W / 53.85579; -1.84604Coordinates: 53°51′21″N 1°50′46″W / 53.85579°N 1.84604°W / 53.85579; -1.84604
Staff 467
Students 1,935 (1st-5th form)
370 (in 6th form)
Ages 11–18
Houses Milner, Oldfield, Sunderland, Wooller
Colours Binglian red, navy, black
Publication The Torch (monthly)
Mascot Torch
Website Bingley Grammar School Website

Bingley Grammar School (BGS) is a Voluntary aided school for both boys and girls from the ages of 11–18 and is located on the outskirts of Bingley, West Yorkshire, England.

Bingley Grammar School was a specialist school for Business & Enterprise from 2006 to 2011. Due to this, students had previously been required to take Business at GCSE but since the 2010 introduction of the English Baccalaureate this is now no longer mandatory.


Bingley Grammar School's long tradition stems from its foundation in 1529, when a series of wealthy benefactors from among the people of Bingley provided a trust to support the education of the young people of the town.

Today, four hundred and eighty years later, the Foundation Trust Governors still meet each term to manage the assets of the trust, and to ensure that the proceeds are used to enhance the education of pupils of the School, now back to its former 'Voluntary Aided' status.[1] From 2006 to 2011 the school was a Business and Enterprise college, assisted mainly by the voluntary and the Foundation.

The school received media attention in September 2009 when it required female pupils to wear trousers.[2]

In November 2009 two teachers were suspended after it emerged that they accompanied pupils to a live sex show at a bar during a school trip to Bangkok's notorious red light district. As of February 2010 they were back working at the school.[3]

In 2010 the previous headteacher, Mr Chris Taylor, resigned to become the headmaster for a school in West Sussex (Steyning Grammar School). He left during the Easter holidays. The new headteacher, Julia Wright, previous deputy head of Dixon's Academy,[4] took over in September 2010. Between these two periods, Luke Weston, current head, was the acting headteacher. In March 2012 the quarterly school magazine 'Enterprising Times' stopped production and the e-publication 'The Torch' replaced it in a move to reduce paper consumption in the school. [5]


The school works on a "house" system, the four houses named after the four founders of the school in 1529. These are Wooller, Milner, Sunderland (introduced in 1952) and Oldfield (introduced in 1967). Pupils can be identified as members of their house by one of the stripes on their ties - Red for Wooller, Blue for Milner, Green for Sunderland, and Yellow for Oldfield.

The houses compete every year in a series of events, from cross country, music and drama. In 2011 it was made compulsory for every pupil to partake in a house competition, fortunately this was accompanied with the additional of several competitions e.g. chess and Scrabble, and some other more strange competitions such as speed texting and an egg and spoon race. These changes were met with considerable criticism by the students.

A sports day event is held each year. The houses also gain points for 'credit stamps' (awarded for good work and behaviour) and aids in winning house competitions. At the end of each year the house with the most points will win the House Cup.

Pupils are also separated into classes within the houses and years. Each Form has one/two tutor(s) who assist in their pupils' daily learning. Students attend form every weekday for half an hour before going to lessons.

The Foundation[edit]

The work which the Foundation Trust Governors have done in managing their assets has meant that they have been able, time and again, to support the School in its development.

During the 1990s, for example, the Foundation made possible the building of the sports hall by funding its construction in partnership with the Sports Council and “The Friends” of Bingley Grammar School; and today the Foundation is supporting a bid for Specialist School Status with a generous contribution towards the sponsorship target.

Whether helping to fund special events and expeditions for students, the Carol Service, (held at Bradford Cathedral), providing prizes for speech day, (this being held at St George's Hall, Bradford and the highlight of the school's academic calendar (held in December)), or underwriting major building projects, the Foundation carries on a tradition through which, over the years, citizens of Bingley have underpinned the work of the School to help provide education for the young people of the town.

Extra-curricular activities[edit]

The School competes in local and national competitions at rugby, hockey, netball, swimming and cricket. It hosts music groups and ensembles for players of all abilities. Its music department holds concerts, and has provided ensembles that have performed outside the school, such as at the Royal Albert Hall.[6]


The nearest railway station is Crossflatts railway station, and the nearest bus stop is Keighley Road/Harold Street. The bus stop is used by services 662 and 760 which go from Bradford and Leeds (respectively) via Saltaire to Keighley, and vice versa. The 727 shuttles members of the public between Keighley, via East Morton to the school, then heads onto Cullingworth via Wilsden and Harden. To Leeds, Bradford and Keighley there is a frequent service, between 5 and 20 minutes, whereas to Cullingworth there is only one bus every hour and sometimes less.[7] Overcrowding is a problem at school opening/closing times, with reports of buses taking up to ten minutes to load all of the passengers, causing severe traffic issues which is not helped by the large numbers of cars collecting/dropping off students. However, this was alleviated slightly in 2003 by the construction of the A650 relief road, colloquially known as "the Bingley Bypass".[8]

There is also a school bus service at BGS, though, over recent years, there has been much controversy over the extreme levels of health and safety with the introduction of the MyBus service.


The headteachers and tenures listed are of the best known accuracy up to 1918, after this there are large gaps.

  • Thomas Howgill, MA - 1613-1622
  • Richard Waugh, MA - 1623-1636
  • Richard Leake, MA - 1640-1641
  • Thomas Watkin, BA - 1641-1651
  • Mr. Lane - 1659-1660
  • Thomas Jackson, MA - 1662-1666
  • Joseph Rawson - 1666-1674
  • Thomas Murgatroyd, MA - 1674-1681
  • William Hustler, BA - 1681-1689
  • Simeon Jenkinson - 1689-1692
  • Henry Hoyle, MA - 1692-1705
  • Thomas Ellison, BA - 1711-1724
  • Richard Leach, BA - 1725-1742
  • Thomas Hudson, BA - 1743-1756
  • Thomas Hudson, MA - 1756-1785
  • David Greenough - 1785-1791
  • Richard Hartley, DD - 1791-1836
  • Anthony Metcalfe - 1836-1850
  • Thomas Dixon, MA, BD - 1851-1873
  • John Sutcliffe, BA - 1873-1901
  • Walter Dazeley, BA, BSc - 1902-1918
  • Alan Smailes, MA, LLB - 1918-1950[9]
  • Mr John Boston, MA 1950-1967
  • Mr L. R. Cottrell, BA, MED 1967-1977[10]
  • Mr R. W. Ingham, BA 1977-1983[11]
  • Ian Plimmer 1983-1996
  • Mr John Patterson 1996 - 2006
  • Chris Taylor, 2006-2010
  • Julia Wright, 2010–2013
  • Luke Weston, 2013–present

Notable alumni[edit]

A plaque commemorating Fred Hoyle


  1. ^ School, Governors. "Bingley Grammar School". Archived from the original on 2007-07-07. Retrieved 2007-07-20. 
  2. ^ "Secondary school bans skirts claiming girls are hitching hems to get boys' attention". Daily Mail. 2009-09-16. Retrieved 2011-03-13. 
  3. ^ "Brit pupils see live sex show in Bangkok during cultural trip!". Asian News International. 2009-11-08. Retrieved 2011-03-06. 
  4. ^ "School Names new Headteacher". 
  5. ^ "The Torch 10/12". Bingley Grammar School. Bingley Grammar School. October 2012. Archived from the original on 19 November 2015. Retrieved 18 November 2015. 
  6. ^ Black, Michael (13 November 2007). "Musicians ready to rock at the proms". Telegraph and Argus. Retrieved 18 November 2015. 
  7. ^[permanent dead link]
  8. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2010-12-20. Retrieved 2011-11-04. 
  9. ^ A history of Bingley Grammar School, 1529-1929, Mr E. E. Dodd
  10. ^ "Head Dies in Smash". Telegraph & Argus. 9 April 1983. Retrieved 20 February 2016. 
  11. ^ Bingley Grammar School 1929-1979, Gary Firth
  12. ^ "Former Student Gareth Batty appointed captain of Surrey County Cricket Club". Bingley Grammar School. BGS. Archived from the original on 8 December 2015. Retrieved 29 November 2015. 
  13. ^ Moore, Patrick (January 2009). "Hoyle, Sir Fred (1915–2001)". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Oxford University Press. Retrieved 2009-08-10.  (Subscription required)
  14. ^ "Benjamin Gott". Graces Guide. Retrieved 29 November 2015. 
  15. ^ Wheeler, Brian (9 January 2013). "Political lives: Austin Mitchell". BBC. Retrieved 29 November 2015. 
  16. ^ Gaughan, Gavin (1 April 2009). "Derek Benfield". The Guardian. Retrieved 29 November 2015. 
  17. ^ "Simon Haughton". Wigan Warriors Fans. Retrieved 30 November 2015. 
  18. ^ "Saltaire Sentinel". Saltaire World Heritage Site. September 2006. Retrieved 7 December 2015. 
  19. ^ Slater, James (5 November 2013). "Ay, Minister". The Local Leader. Retrieved 30 November 2015. 
  20. ^ Young, Chris (28 August 2015). "Bingley band Marmozets take to stage for Leeds and Reading Festivals". Telegraph & Argus. Retrieved 29 November 2015. 
  21. ^ "Bishop Dies". Aire Valley Target. 5 July 1984. p. 3. 

External links[edit]