Bootham School

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Bootham School

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YO30 7BU

TypePrivate school
MottoMembra sumus corporis magni
(We are members of a greater body)
Religious affiliation(s)Religious Society of Friends
Established6 January 1823; 200 years ago (1823-01-06)
FounderReligious Society of Friends (Quakers)
Department for Education URN121722 Tables
HeadmasterChris Jeffery[1]
Deputy HeadMartyn Beer
Age3 to 19
Enrolment605 as of January 2016
PublicationBootham Magazine
Boarding HousesRowntree
Former PupilsBootham Old Scholars Association
Bootham School, Bootham, York. The main building was originally built in 1804 for Sir Richard Vanden Bempde Johnstone

Bootham School is a private Quaker boarding school, on Bootham in the city of York in England. It accepts boys and girls ages 3–19, and had an enrolment of 605 pupils in 2016.[2] It is one of seven Quaker schools in England.

The school was founded by the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) and opened on 6 January 1823 in Lawrence Street, York. Its first headmaster was William Simpson (1823–1828). He was followed by John Ford (1828-c.1865). The school is now on Bootham, near York Minster, in a building originally built in 1804 for Sir Richard Vanden Bempde Johnstone.

The school's motto Membra Sumus Corporis Magni means "We are members of a greater body", quoting Seneca the Younger (Epistle 95, 52).


Bootham was ranked at 43rd in the 2011 Independent Schools A-Levels League Tables.[3]

Notable alumni[edit]

Notable former pupils include the 19th-century parliamentary leader John Bright, the mathematician Lewis Fry Richardson ("father of fractals"), the physicist and electrical engineer Silvanus P. Thompson, the historian A. J. P. Taylor, the actor-manager Brian Rix, the applied linguist Stephen Pit Corder, the leading child psychiatrist Sir Michael Rutter, the famous social reformer Seebohm Rowntree, the 1959 Nobel Peace Prize winner Philip Noel-Baker, Cabinet Secretary Sir Jeremy Heywood, singer-songwriter Benjamin Francis Leftwich, the chief executive of Marks & Spencer Stuart Rose[citation needed] and Jon Ingle, better known as drag artist Lady Bunny.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Christopher Jeffrey named as new Bootham School headteacher". York Press. 1 April 2015. Retrieved 16 September 2016.
  2. ^ "Bootham School". EduBase. Department for Education. Archived from the original on 19 February 2017. Retrieved 18 February 2017.
  3. ^ "The Top 100 Independent Schools at A-level" at
  4. ^ "Lady Bunny on Disco, Drag & Demagogues". 7 June 2019. Retrieved 11 July 2022.

Further reading[edit]

  • Bootham School Register. Compiled under the direction of a committee of O.Y.S.A., 1914, with revised eds. 1935, 1971, 2010.
  • JS Rowntree, Friends' Boys' School, York a Sketch of its History 1829–1878 (1879)
  • FE Pollard Bootham School 1823–1923 (JM Dent and Sons, 1926)
  • SK Brown Bootham School York 1823–1973 (author, 1973)

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 53°57′53″N 1°05′13″W / 53.96472°N 1.08694°W / 53.96472; -1.08694