Dame Allan's School, Newcastle upon Tyne

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Dame Allan's Schools
Dame Allan's School, Newcastle upon Tyne.svg
Established 1705
Type Independent day school
Religion Church of England
Principal John Hind
Head of Junior School Andrew Edge
Vice-Principals Alan Hopper
Natalie Shaw
Founder Dame Eleanor Allan
Location Fowberry Crescent
Newcastle upon Tyne
United Kingdom
Local authority Newcastle upon Tyne
DfE number 391/603
Students approx. 920
Gender Coeducational; single-sex (Senior School)
Ages 3–18
Former pupils Old Allanians
Website www.dameallans.co.uk

Dame Allan's Schools is a collection of Independent schools in Fenham, in the west end of Newcastle upon Tyne, England. It comprises a coeducational junior school, single-sex senior schools and a coeducational sixth form. Founded in 1705 as a charity, the original schools are two of the oldest schools in the city.


They were founded by Dame Eleanor Allan, the daughter of a local goldsmith and the widow of a tobacco merchant, to provide a proper education for "40 poor boys and 20 poor girls of the parishes of St Nicholas and St John". The schools were endowed with land at Wallsend, to the east of Newcastle. The original school seems likely to have been near St Nicholas' Church, and certainly was by 1778. The schools occupied at least six sites before they moved to the present site in Fenham, in 1935.[1] The senior schools have shared the current site since 1935, but until 1988 they operated as separate boys' and girls' schools with a joint governing body. The governors then took the decision to appoint a principal with overall responsibility for the management of the two schools. At the same time, they created a joint mixed sixth form and reintroduced a mixed junior school.

The plural, "schools", refers to the fact that Dame Allan's operates in a diamond format. In effect, Dame Allan's consists of 4 different schools: the co-educational Junior School for nursery to Year 6 are located in a separate building in Spital Tongues; the single sex boys' and girls' schools for years 7 to 11; and the co-educational sixth form (years 12 to 13).[2]


A number of new classrooms were built between 2004 and 2005 to replace older facilities, with some intended specifically for the sixth form centre.[3] The Sixth Form Centre was opened by the Queen of England during an official visit on 14 October 2005 and was named the Queen's Building.

In 2007 refurbishment of existing buildings continued with a new library, Computer Resource Centre and ICT teaching rooms. These rooms are now spacious modern teaching areas, which are available to students during break, lunch and after school. 2008 saw the opening of the all-weather pitch and new tennis courts which have been constructed on the existing areas on the Fowberry Crescent site and the redevelopment of the entrance area of the schools.

September 2012 saw the opening of the new nursery and junior school in Spital Tongues. [4]

2015 saw Dame Allan's chosen as the recipient of a £250,000 grant to help fund a £500,000 project. The grant was given by the Reece Foundation which promotes the improvement of education in engineering, technology and related subjects. The donation will enable the Schools to develop a brand new state of the art Design and Technology teaching facility, creating new educational experiences and career opportunities for students.[citation needed]

The new facility will help students from across the region. A number of link primary schools will also use the advanced facilities which will be fully fitted out with the latest equipment including 3D printers and sophisticated software. This will build on the Schools' existing master class programme. The donation will enable the Schools to develop a brand new state of the art Design and Technology teaching facility, creating new educational experiences and career opportunities for students. This will build on the Schools' existing master class programme. [5]


All schools are private, and potential candidates must pass written exams and an interview. The fees are currently (September 2015) around £3,867 per term in the Main Schools and per term in the Junior Department. These fees include books and external examination entry fees, but do not include meals. Scholarships of up to 50% are available on the basis of academic merit, and bursaries of up to 100% are available on the basis of academic merit and financial need.[2]

Being a private school, Dame Allan's does not strictly adhere to the National Curriculum. It does enter all its students in public examinations such as GCSEs and A-levels, so the subjects taught are closely tied in to their national counterparts. All students must study English, mathematics, and the sciences to GCSE level, and it is strongly recommended that at least one foreign language be studied to this level. Sixth form students have a much wider range of study, with no mandatory subjects and the introduction of many new subjects in year 12, including A-levels in politics, psychology, sports, business and theatre studies. Dame Allan's is an Anglican school.[6]

In 2005 the school recorded its best ever set of exam results, including a handful of Top 5 results in several subjects, notably GCSE languages.[7] Furthermore, two pupils were awarded 6 grade As at A-level. The school consistently performs to an extremely high standard in public examinations, with the girls' school often slightly outscoring the boys' school at GCSE level.[8] The school has not yet been inspected by OFSTED[9] but received a positive report from the Independent Schools Inspectorate in 2000.[10]

The 2000 inspection summarised the schools as "a civilised and civilising community ...[which provides] a well-rounded education for pupils from the age of 8 to 18".[10] and the 2006 report states "Dame Allan's are good schools with several great strengths and no significant weaknesses. The schools succeed very well in their key aims of providing a broad education for their pupils, where academic success is greatly valued but so is the moral, social and spiritual development of pupils...They have developed a strong sense of community; relationships are excellent and well-qualified and highly committed staffs provide very good personal care and support for pupils. Good teaching helps to ensure that pupils make good to excellent progress" and "By the time they leave, pupils have become well-educated, rounded individuals with a clear set of values and a moral compass to guide them through adult life."

The school has a very good record of extracurricular activities, having earned a national reputation for the performing arts, in particular dance, and been awarded a Silver Artsmark Award.

Recent statistics show that Dame Allan's is the best school in the North East of England at GCSE and A-level, beating local schools and rivals RGS and Central High.

Notable former pupils[edit]

Former pupils are known as Old Allanians.

  • Peter Pilkington (1933–2011), Conservative Peer and former Chairman of the Broadcasting Complaints Commission
  • Dame Myra Curtis (1886–1971), Treasury Civil Servant and Principal of Newnham College, Cambridge
  • Ian La Frenais (1937), writer
  • Sir David Lumsden (1928), Choirmaster, organist and harpsichordist; former Principal of the Royal Academy of Music
  • Margaret Dale (1922–2010), dancer and television producer
  • Ellie Crisell (1976), English journalist and television presenter
  • David Leon (1980), actor
  • Edward Hinds FRS (1949), Professor of Physics
  • Marian Foster (1948), Broadcaster
  • Professor The Reverend Canon Vigo Auguste Demant (1893–1983), Theologian, Regius Professor of Moral and Pastoral Theology, Oxford
  • Professor Elizabeth Fallaize (1950–2009), Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Education), University of Oxford
  • Professor David A. T. Stafford (1942), academic historian
  • Dr Mary Stiasny, academic; Assistant Director Institute of Education, London and formerly Director of Education at the British Council
  • Trish Williamson (1955–2007), broadcaster
  • Dr Richard Maitland Laws FRS, academic; formerly President of the British Antarctic Survey and Master of St Edmund's College, Cambridge
  • The Right Reverend John Crook, former Bishop of Moray, Ross and Caithness
  • Jane Carter (1928–1995), leading energy economist
  • Amanda Sourry, Unilever executive
  • Professor Ruth Gregory, physicist and mathematician
  • Tom Williams (1981) biographer of Raymond Chandler
  • Prof Philip Routledge OBE (1967), Professor of Clinical Pharmacology and Honorary Consultant Physician, Cardiff and Vale NHS Trust
  • Phil Routledge (1976), author of numerous science text books, including Ascent, Fusion, Scientifica and Edexcel GCSE Science
  • Nic Bewick (1976), architect, co-founder Studio&Partners, Milan
  • Alistair Gascoigne (1976), Director of Infection Prevention and Control; Consultant Physician, Royal Victoria Infirmary, Newcastle upon Tyne
  • Neil Hazon (1976), Reader, Department Of Biology, St. Andrews University
  • Len Brown (1976), NME journalist, television producer and author
  • Cliff Blakey (1976), Leading landscape artist
  • Peter Bowden (1976), Chartered Surveyor Director DTZ
  • Bryan Millar (1974), Chief Executive, Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  • Jamie Lambert (1989), Member of boy band Collabro
  • Margaret Jackman (1956), actor
  • Mayank Banerjee (2012), Past President of the Oxford Union[11]


  1. ^ "History". Dame Allan's School. Retrieved 2009-08-17. 
  2. ^ a b "Boys". Dame Allan's School. Retrieved 2009-08-17.  Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "website" defined multiple times with different content (see the help page).
  3. ^ "Dame Allan's School website". Archived from the original on 2006-05-09. Retrieved 2006-04-04. 
  4. ^ http://www.journallive.co.uk/north-east-news/todays-news/2012/09/18/dame-allan-s-school-pupils-get-a-blessing-from-the-bishop-of-newcastle-61634-31855173/
  5. ^ "Reece Foundation". Dame Allan's School. Retrieved 2015-08-20. 
  6. ^ "Curriculum from dameallans.co.uk". Archived from the original on September 29, 2011. Retrieved 2006-04-04. 
  7. ^ "Top marks at Dame Allan's" (Press release). Dame Allan's School. 
  8. ^ "Newcastle-upon-Tyne league tables, 2005". BBC News. Retrieved 2010-01-02. 
  9. ^ "OFSTED reports for Dame Allan's". Archived from the original on 2006-03-03. Retrieved 2006-04-04. 
  10. ^ a b "Independent Schools Inspectorate report, 2000". Independent Schools Inspectorate. Retrieved 2006-04-04. 
  11. ^ http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/crime/10818361/Oxford-Union-president-replaced-amid-rape-allegations.html

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 54°58′55″N 1°39′07″W / 54.982°N 1.652°W / 54.982; -1.652