Malvern St James

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Malvern Girls' College)
Jump to: navigation, search
Malvern St James
MSJ Crest.jpg
Established 1893 as "Malvern Girls' College"
Type Independent day and boarding
Headmistress Mrs Olivera Raraty
Founder Miss Greenslade and Miss Poulton (Malvern Girls College)
Location Avenue Road
WR14 3BA
52°06′37″N 2°19′03″W / 52.11035°N 2.31756°W / 52.11035; -2.31756Coordinates: 52°06′37″N 2°19′03″W / 52.11035°N 2.31756°W / 52.11035; -2.31756
DfE number 885/6012
DfE URN 117018 Tables
Students 400
Gender Girls
Ages 4–18

Malvern St James is an independent school for girls in Great Malvern, Worcestershire, England. Founded in 1893 as Malvern Girls' College, it was renamed Malvern St James following a merger in 2006 with St James' School in West Malvern. It continues to occupy the same campus as the former college, which includes as its main building the former Imperial Hotel, taken over for use as a school by Malvern Girls' College in 1919.

It occupies much of the land between the two parallel streets of Barnards Green Road and Avenue Road and is located conveniently close to Great Malvern railway station.

The school comprises three sections: a Prep Department for girls aged 4–11, a Senior School for girls aged 11–18, and a Sixth Form.

Malvern St James has received the highest rating of ‘Excellent’ in the Independent Schools Inspectorate Educational Quality Inspection, published in May 2017 [1]


Malvern Girls' College was founded in 1893 by Miss Greenslade and Miss Poulton, and was first located in College Road. In 1919 they acquired the Imperial Hotel and in 1934, a major extension including an assembly hall was built. Further extensions included the Hatfield building in the 1960s, the Edinburgh Dome in 1977 and The Science Education Centre in 1998.[2] St James's School was founded in the south of England by Alice and Katrine Baird in 1896 and moved to the large mansion of Lady Howard de Walden in West Malvern in 1902.[2] The Abbey School was founded in Blockley, Worcestershire and moved to Malvern in 1897 and to Malvern Wells in 1908.[2] In 1979 the two schools merged on the West Malvern campus of St James, and the resulting school was named St James's and The Abbey. In 1994 Lawnside School which was founded around 1856[3] merged with St James's and The Abbey School, and the school was renamed St James.[2] In 2006, Malvern Girls College merged with St James's School, and was refounded as Malvern St James (MSJ).[2]


The Imperial Hotel[edit]

Main building - the former Imperial Hotel

Following the collapse of the spa industry, many of the hotels were acquired for use as private boarding schools, and education became the basis of Malvern's economy; the Imperial Hotel was purchased by the school in 1919.[4] The area was well suited for schools due to its established attractive environment and the possibility of children being able to travel unaccompanied with their trunks by rail to their boarding schools near the stations. The former hotel is directly opposite Great Malvern railway station, with its dedicated (now derelict) tunnel to the basement of the building, which is clearly visible from both platforms of the station. The red brick and stone Imperial Hotel which had been the largest in Malvern during the town's heyday as a spa in the second half of the 19th century, is still one of the largest buildings in Malvern and was built in 1860 by the architect E. W. Elmslie who also designed the Great Malvern railway station, the Council House, and The Grove in Avenue Road in 1867, originally to be his private residence which in 1927 became part of the Lawnside School for girls. The Imperial was the first hotel to be lit by incandescent gas. It was equipped with all types of baths and brine was brought specially by rail from Droitwich. In 1934 the building was extended with the addition of the York Hall, and officially opened by Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother.[4]

The Edinburgh Dome[edit]

The Edinburgh Dome

The school campus has an interesting sports hall - The Edinburgh Dome, so named as it was unveiled by the Duke of Edinburgh. It consists of a round, green, balloon-shaped building, containing squash courts, a gym area and a large games area, all surrounded by a moat. Based on an innovative roof construction by Dante Bini, the Binishell (or Parashell), it was built in 1977 by architect Michael Godwin, and consultant engineer John Faber and opened in 1978. On the advice of English Heritage it has been designated a Grade II listed building.[5]

Notable Alumnae[edit]

Malvern Girls' College[edit]

  • Sarah Staniforth, Director of the National Trust Properties[6]
  • Tania Long, WWII journalist


Phyllida Lloyd, the Director of the runaway hit "Mamma Mia"

St James, West Malvern[edit]


  1. ^ ISI Retrieved 12 May 2017
  2. ^ a b c d e Malvern St James - School History Retrieved 12 January 2010
  3. ^
  4. ^ a b Smith, Brian S. (1964). A History of Malvern. Leicester University Press, reprinted by 1978 by Alan Sutton. p. 256. ISBN 0-904387-31-3. 
  5. ^ Hogg, Simon, (2009) Grade II listing for Edinburgh Sport Dome, Malvern Architects Journal Retrieved 12 January 2010
  6. ^ Courtauld Institute of Art Retrieved 12 January 2010

Further reading[edit]

  • Dixey, Mary; Stewart, Duseline (1996). The wonderful world of Lawnside: the history of a Malvern School c.1852-1994. Malvern: Lawnside Old Girls' Association. 
  • Hurle, Pamela (1993). Malvern Girls' College - A Centenary History. Chichester: Philimore & Co. Ltd. ISBN 0-85033-853-0. 
  • Blumenau, Ralph (1965). A History of Malvern College. MACMILLAN; ST.MARTIN'S P.  ASIN: B0000CMFA4

External links[edit]

See also[edit]

List of independent schools in the United Kingdom