King James's School, Almondbury

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

King James's School
Saint Helen's Gate

, ,

Coordinates53°37′46″N 1°44′32″W / 53.629397°N 1.742277°W / 53.629397; -1.742277Coordinates: 53°37′46″N 1°44′32″W / 53.629397°N 1.742277°W / 53.629397; -1.742277
Established1547 (royal charter 1608)
Local authorityKirklees
Department for Education URN138706 Tables
PrincipalMr Ian Rimmer
Age11 to 16

King James's School is a coeducational secondary school located in Almondbury in the English county of West Yorkshire.[1]


The school library 'The Big' (left) and headmaster's study (right)

King James's Grammar School[2] was founded as chantry school in 1547 and received its name and a royal charter in 1608 thanks to the efforts of three men who travelled on horseback to London to get a royal charter from the king. They rode from Farnley Tyas, the nearby village, having been sent to London to get the charter by the local wealthy men from Almondbury who wanted a local school for their offspring to visit. Extensions were made to the school by William Swinden Barber between 1880 and 1883.[3]

The grammar school era ended in 1976 when it became a comprehensive school: King James's School. The school was designated a specialist Science College in 2004. In September 2012 the school converted to academy status. The current principal is Mr Ian Rimmer.

The school today[edit]

King James's School is a comprehensive secondary school with a catchment area that includes Almondbury, Dalton, Grange Moor, Kirkheaton and Lepton.[4] The school offers GCSEs, BTECs and Cambridge Nationals as programmes of study for pupils.[5] It has been labelled Britain’s strictest school after a new rule book containing 40 new rules. Ones including not looking out of the window and asking why when they have been told off.[6]


The school is the subject of two histories: A History of King James's Grammar School in Almondbury (author: Gerald Hinchliffe) and King James's School in Almondbury: An Illustrated History (editors: Roger Dowling and John Hargreaves).

A book Morning Assembly (editor: Roger Dowling; text: Andrew Taylor) gives a detailed account of the life of former headmaster Harry Taylor together with a compilation in facsimile form of some 100 prayers collected by Harry Taylor for use each day at morning assembly.

Notable former pupils[edit]

King James's Grammar School[edit]

Cover of Report Book from King James's Grammar School Almondbury (student's name redacted)
King James's Grammar School custom colour-coded exercise book c.1972. Chemistry was dark blue, physics (shown here) cream, and so on.


  1. ^ "King James School".
  2. ^ "King James's School home page". Archived from the original on 23 May 2010.
  3. ^ Historic England. "Entrance block and extensions to north and north west at King James Grammar School (1232192)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 1 March 2014.
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ "'Britain's strictest school' bans looking out the window... and smirking". 11 September 2017.
  7. ^ "George Beharrell - Graces Guide".
  8. ^ "Bio - Faculty History Project".
  9. ^ Cowling, Elizabeth (11 September 2016). "Alex Danchev obituary" – via

Further reading[edit]

  • A History of King James's Grammar School in Almondbury (1963), Gerald Hinchliffe, The Old Almondburians' Society, 384pp, ASIN B0000CLZS5
  • An Illustrated History of King James's School in Almondbury (2007), Gerald Hinchliffe, Edward Royle, Richard Taylor, et al., The Old Almondburians' Society, 112pp, full colour

External links[edit]