Maidstone Grammar School
|Maidstone Grammar School|
|Type||Foundation Grammar School|
|Motto||Olim Meminisse Juvabit|
"One day it will be pleasing to remember." from the Aeneid 1.203
|Department for Education URN||118835 Tables|
|Chair of Governors||Mark Rolfe|
|Head teacher||Mark Tomkins|
|Gender||Boys (11-16) Mixed (16-18)|
|Age||11 to 18|
|Former Pupils||Old Maidstonians|
Maidstone Grammar School (MGS) is a grammar school in Maidstone, England. The school was founded in 1549 after Protector Somerset sold Corpus Christi Hall on behalf of King Edward VI to the people of Maidstone for £200. The Royal Charter for establishment of a grammar school was also granted at this time.
The school takes boys at the age of 11 and over, by examination, and male and female pupils at 16+ on their GCSE results. The school currently has over 1200 pupils and approximately 120 members of staff. The school holds both a Language College award and a Healthy School award. It is situated just off Loose Road (A229), west of Mote Park and the Mote Park Leisure Centre.
The main school building surrounds a Tudor-style quadrangle with a cloister on one side. A new block was added in the 1960s. A Sixth Form and arts and crafts block was added in 1981. This newer building completes a second quadrangle, nicknamed the 'Court'. In 2005 a new refectory and teaching block of 15 classrooms was built, this building currently houses maths, history and art departments. There are over 100 classrooms, twelve science laboratories, a language laboratory, seven computer centres, music rooms, a lecture theatre, gym and sports hall and a canteen (refectory). A new 'Applied Learning Centre', with new editing suites, was completed in the 2010–11 school year, with a similarly styled 'Food Technology' and Sixth Form block having been opened in September 2011. A new Performing Arts building was built ready for use at the start of the 2017/18 academic year. The building includes a state of the art recording studio and live room, a specialised music computer suite, 4 sound absorbent music practise rooms, a drama studio with sound and light control room and other classrooms built with music in mind. As well as the new performing arts block, work started on a new sports pavilion and a computing and science block. Both will be completed at start of the 2018/19 academic year.
A house system was inaugurated in 1899 with three houses: School, East Borough and West Borough. By c.1900 these houses were revised based on local geography, with East House being for those boys east of the river, West House for those boys on the western riverside, and School House for townspeople and boarders. In September 2007 the school continued this tradition with the introduction of six school houses, these named after military vehicles: Challenger (purple), Churchill (yellow), Endeavour (red), Hurricane (green), Invincible, (blue), and Spitfire (white). For the 2017-18 academic year, a new house system was introduced to accommodate the expansion of the school. The four new house names are based on the four sites the school has used since its foundation in 1549: Corpus Christi (Red-based on Corpus Christi Hall, the original site used from 1549), College (Green-from the second school site at the College of All Saints), Tonbridge (Yellow-named after the former Tonbridge Road site used from 1871) and Barton (Blue-named after the present school site, used from 1930).
The sixth form is one of the largest in the south-east of England. Each year the school takes up to 200 students into Year 12, including about thirty external pupils of mixed gender from any school according to their GCSE results. The sixth form teaches AS and A2 courses.
Combined Cadet Force
The school has a Combined Cadet Force, with Navy, Army and RAF sections accepting students on a voluntary basis when they reach year nine. The Cadet Force, in particular the Army section, has roots in the Royal Engineers. The Navy section is affiliated with HMS Collingwood, a land establishment in Portsmouth, the Navy section is the senior service after the creation of the CCF in 1906. The RAF section is one of the most successful in the United Kingdom, winning 9 Air Squadron Trophies and currently the pinnacle of drill for the whole of the CCF, entering teams into competitions on a national level, including Air Squadron Trophy and the Air Training Corps, currently commanded by Flt Sgt Roffey.
In 1908 Rev C. G. Duffield (headmaster from 1898 to 1913), wrote words in Latin to the music of music-master Dr H. F. Henniker for Gaudeamus, the school song. The words, based on verses in Virgil’s Aeneid, are still sung on special occasions such as upper and lower school speech days.
The Maidstonian is the school's annual publication of reports, articles, news and original contributions. Originally a simple record of every member of staff, as well as each pupil and his form, The Maidstonian has evolved into a publication that is written by pupils, for pupils. Editions include information about any member of staff who has left or who joined the school that academic year, reports from the CCF, Music Department, sports teams, and diaries from foreign trips. Original contributions are of mainly poetry, prose and artwork.
The school has recently created a development fund, funded by parents. The school is currently undergoing expansions as stated above, including the building of a new Performing Arts Centre, which was officially completed at the start of the 2017/18 academic year as well as the construction of a new pavilion, to replace the old building.
Former pupils of the school are called "Old Maidstonians" and include:
Art, Music & Literature
- William Alexander (painter)
- Daniel Blythe, writer
- James Butler (artist) MBE, sculptor
- Philip Langridge CBE, tenor
- Philip Moore, Organist of York Minster from 1983–2008, Organist of Guildford Cathedral from 1974–83
- Christopher Smart, poet
- Yeborobo, musical group (members thereof)
Media, television & film
- James Burke, science historian and TV presenter
- David Chater, television foreign correspondent and former Chairman of the Old Maidstonian Society
- Andrew Dilnot CBE (briefly), Principal of St Hugh's College, Oxford since 2002, and former presenter of BBC Radio 4's More or Less
- James Hillier (actor)
- Paul Lewis, financial journalist and presenter of Money Box & Money Box Live on BBC Radio 4
- Shaun McKenna, screenwriter
- Stuart Miles, Blue Peter presenter from 1994-9
- Tom Riley, film and television actor
- Captain Ben Babington-Browne, of 22 Engineer Regiment of the Royal Engineers, killed on 6 July 2009 after a Canadian Bell CH-146 Griffon crashed in Zabul Province, Afghanistan
- Lt-Gen Sir Frederick Dobson Middleton CB, Commandant from 1874-84 of RMC Sandhurst
- Air Vice-Marshal Philip Hedgeland CB OBE, expert in airborne radar, Station Commander from 1966-7 of RAF Stanbridge, and helped develop the H2S radar in the war at the Telecommunications Research Establishment in Malvern
- Air Marshal Sir Timothy Jenner CB, Station Commander of RAF Shawbury from 1987–88
- Flight Lieutenant Lloyd Morgan D.F.M Second World War bomber pilot
- Charles de Salis, wartime intelligence officer
Politics & government
- Sir Samuel Egerton Brydges, MP from 1812-8 for Maidstone
- Nick Gibb (briefly), Conservative Schools Minister 2010-current, and MP for Bognor Regis and Littlehampton since 1997
- Dallas Mithen Chairman of the Forestry Commission
- John Pugh, Liberal Democrat MP since 2001 for Southport
- Adam Sampson, Legal Services Ombudsman since 2009, and Chief Executive from 2003-89 of Shelter
- Mark F. Watts, Labour MEP from 1994-9 for Kent East, then South East England from 1999–2004
- Rt Rev David John Atkinson, Bishop of Thetford from 2001-9
- Leo Avery
- Rt Rev Bob Evens, Bishop of Crediton since 2004
- Henry Gould vicar of St Paul's Cathedral 1908-1913
- George Harris (Unitarian)
- Very Rev Robert William Pope OBE
- Martin Warner (bishop), Bishop of Whitby since 2010
Science & academia
- Peter Day, Fullerian Professor of Chemistry from 1994–2008, and Director of the Royal Institution from 1991-8
- Frank Finn, ornithologist
- Peter Heather, historian
- Geoffrey Hosking, Professor of Russian History from 1984-2007 at University College London
- William Morfill, Professor of Russian from 1900-9 at the University of Oxford
- John Orrell, theatre historian
- John Pond Astronomer Royal 1811-1835
- Ivan Roots Historian, Biographer of Oliver Cromwell
- Bill Saunders, Professor of Endodontology, and Dean of Dentistry since 2000 at the University of Dundee, and President from 1997-8 of the British Endodontic Society
- David Flatman, Bath Rugby Union player
- Tom Parsons, Kent and Hampshire county cricketer
- Frank Sando, Olympic athlete, two-time winner at the International Cross Country Championships (1955, 1957), represented Great Britain in two consecutive Summer Olympic Games
- Steven Haworth, wrestler also known as Nigel McGuinness and Desmond Wolfe
- Richard (Dick) Beeching, Baron Beeching, who oversaw the closure of many railways in the 1960s
- Julius Brenchley, explorer
- Francis Fane, 1st Earl of Westmorland
- Sir Thomas Fane,
- William Golding, author of Lord of the Flies, taught English and Music at the school between 1938 and 1940, when he met his wife Ann Brookfield.
- Steve Restarick, former professional footballer, taught P.E. at the school before his suspension in 2014 amid fraud allegations.
- "School Sites » Maidstone Grammar School". www.mgs.kent.sch.uk. Retrieved 8 July 2016.
- Brownfield G.The Maidstone Grammar School a record 1579-1965,Phillips
- Streatfield F, an account of the Grammar School in the Kings town and parish of Maidstone in Kent, Rogus and B,1915
- "MGS School Song", Old Maidstonian Society. Retrieved 29 October 2014
- "School Song", Maidstone Grammar School. Retrieved 29 October 2014
- "Paul Lewis – Biography". Debretts. Archived from the original on 17 March 2016. Retrieved 14 March 2016.
- Heart Radio
- Ben Babington-Browne
- "Air Vice-Marshal Mike Hedgeland obituary". Telegraph. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Clare Horton. "Head of Shelter, Adam Sampson, quits to helm new consumer watchdog | Society". theguardian.com. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Scotland (15 August 2008). "Biography of William Saunders". Universitystory.gla.ac.uk. Retrieved 5 April 2014.