King's School, Rochester
|Motto||Disce aut discede
("Learn or leave")
|Type||Independent day and boarding school
|Religion||Church of England|
|Chairman of the Governors||Dean of Rochester|
|Founder||(refounded) Henry VIII|
|Colours||Blue, black and white|
|Former pupils||Old Roffensians|
|School Song||"Carmen Roffense"|
The King's School, Rochester is an English independent school in Rochester, Kent. It is a cathedral school and, being part of the foundation of Rochester Cathedral, the Dean of Rochester serves as chair of the school's governing body. The school claims to be the second oldest continuously operating school in the world, having been founded in 604 AD. [a]
The cathedral school in Rochester was founded in 604 AD, at the same time as the cathedral. It was refounded by Henry VIII in 1541 during the English Reformation when the monastery in Rochester was dissolved. It is the second oldest school in the United Kingdom after The King's School Canterbury. The current principal is Jeremy Walker, who also acts as the senior school headmaster. Roger Overend is the preparatory school headmaster and Sarah Skillen is the pre-preparatory school headmistress.
The school is housed in a variety of buildings around the cathedral precincts including Main School, Davies Court, Mackean House, the school hall and Old St Margaret's, a former workhouse which houses the maths and classics departments).
The preparatory school is situated close-by and is predominantly a campus of buildings surrounding the Paddock, which is a space used as a cricket and rugby field. A larger sports ground, commonly known as "the Alps" is located about a mile away.
The school's administrative offices are housed in Satis House, which reputedly gained its name from a comment by Queen Elizabeth I who stayed there as a guest of its owner, Richard Watts. As she left, Watts asked the queen if she had been comfortable during her stay. She replied: "satis", which in translation means "enough" or "satisfactory".
In 2011 the school bought the Stirling Centre and in September 2013, it reopened as the King's Rochester Sports Centre. It is now open to students and the public.
The school also has a boat house in Maidstone, south of the Allington Lock. It is used for rowing and kayaking. The building is also known to school pupils as "The Boat House".
Within the senior school there are currently five houses:
|Crick||Green||Thomas Crick – Dean of Rochester (1943–1958)|
|Parker||Blue||William Parker – Headmaster of the School (1913–1935)|
|School House||Purple||School Boarding House (senior and preparatory school)|
|Storrs||Red||John Storrs – Dean of Rochester (1913–1928)|
|Whiston||Yellow||Robert Whiston – Clerk in Holy Orders and Headmaster of the Cathedral Grammar School (1842–1877)|
In the preparatory school there are currently four houses, though there were previously six:
- St William's
- St Nicholas'
- St Andrew's
- St Peter's
The now defunct fifth and sixth houses were St Margaret's and St Justus'.
In pre-prep the houses are Tigers (red), Zebra (blue), Hippos (green) or Giraffes (yellow). Zebra used to be called "Snakes", but as some children were scared of snakes it was changed to "Zebra" house.
- Sir Edwin Arnold, poet and author
- Sir Derek Barton, Nobel Prize-winning chemist
- Michael Brown, Archdeacon of Nottingham
- Richard Dadd, artist
- Edward Mortlock Donaldson, World War II flying ace
- Christopher Gabbitas, singer with the King's Singers
- John Griffiths, Warden of Wadham College, Oxford
- John Gummer, former Conservative cabinet minister
- Peter Gummer, Baron Chadlington, Conservative peer
- John Hemming-Clark, politician and author
- Richard Keen, lawyer
- David Clive King, author
- Dinsdale Landen, actor
- Harold Stephen Langhorne, Brigadier-General in the Royal Army Ordnance Corps
- Geoffrey Lees, cricketer and educator
- G. R. S. Mead, author and member of the Theosophical Society
- Peter Rogers, film producer
- Simon Shackleton, musician from Lunatic Calm
- John Storrs, Dean of Rochester
- Pete Tong, BBC Radio 1 disc jockey
- Sir Cecil Wakeley, 1st Baronet, surgeon
- Matthew Walker, professional cricketer
- Martin Warner, Bishop of Chichester
- Michael Wilkes, Adjutant-General to the Forces
- Douglas Wilson, Bishop of Trinidad
|Headmaster||Years as Headmaster||Duration|
|John Langhorne||1877–1893||16 years|
|John Bennett Lancelot||1893–1901||8 years|
|The Reverend Thomas Frederick Hobson||1901–1910||9 years|
|Richard Frederick Elwyn||1910–1913||3 years|
|William Parker||1913–1935||22 years|
|Ernest William Davies||1935–1957||22 years|
|The Revd Canon Douglas Vicary||1957–1975||18 years|
|Roy Ford||1975–1986||11 years|
|Ian Walker||1986–2012||25 years|
- "King's School Rochester: History". 28 September 2006. Retrieved 10 January 2011.
- Page, Anne. "Rochester, King's School". Of Choristers – ancient and modern. Retrieved 19 October 2012.
- Note that Jeremy Walker took over as principal from Ian Walker in 2012, the same surname has caused some confusion.
- King's Rochester: Pre-prep Pastoral Care
- "Dinsdale Landen". The Independent. London. 31 December 2003.
- "Matt Walker player profile". Cricinfo. Retrieved 23 November 2007.