Queen Elizabeth's Grammar School, Ashbourne

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Queen Elizabeth's Grammar School
QEGS Ashbourne Logo.png
Queen Elizabeth's Grammar School Logo: The Coat of Arms and Motto of The Cokayne Family
The Green Road

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Coordinates53°01′19″N 1°43′46″W / 53.02198°N 1.72936°W / 53.02198; -1.72936Coordinates: 53°01′19″N 1°43′46″W / 53.02198°N 1.72936°W / 53.02198; -1.72936
MottoEn bon espoyr
Established1585; 437 years ago (1585)
Department for Education URN136972 Tables
Chair of GovernorsMrs Helen Baker
Head of AcademyMr Scott Garrity
Age11 to 18
Enrolment~1,400 pupils
HousesCokayne Boothby, Hull, Spalden
PublicationQEGS Press

Queen Elizabeth's School (QEGS) is a non-selective academy school for 11- to 18-year-olds in the town of Ashbourne, Derbyshire, England. In the academic year 2009–10, there were 1,396 pupils on roll.[1]

Both the main school and 6th form have in the past appeared within the top 25 in league tables,[2][3] and in October 2008, Ofsted marked the school as "good" or "outstanding" in all sections.[4] However in 2013 Ofsted marked the school as 'requires improvement' in 3 of the 4 categories. In 2009 the school celebrated 100 years at the Green Road site.[5]


The group who founded the school in 1585, included Sir Thomas Cokayne (or Cockayne), High Sheriff of Derbyshire and Thomas Carter of the Middle Temple, London.[6][7] Sir Thomas Cokayne granted £4 a year out of his lands towards the maintenance of the school.[6] He is often credited as the founder of the school; this is due to his Lordship of the Town of Ashbourne and the fact the school took his family's coat of arms.[8] The original building still exists today.

The school moved to its current site on the Green Road in 1909.[9]

Prior to 1973 the school was a grammar school, with an "11 plus" entry exam. In 1973 QEGS merged with the Ashbourne County Secondary School on Old Derby Road. The school kept both sites, and continued to use the historical name "Queen Elizabeth's Grammar School" although it operated as a comprehensive secondary school, not a grammar school, and had no entry exam and was the sole state secondary school in the town.

QEGS was awarded technology specialist status in 2005, and a new technology block was built with the funding received.[9] On 1 August 2011 it converted to Academy Status and became an Independent State School but still serves the same catchment area and has the same admissions procedures.

Current buildings[edit]

  • 'Old building': is the oldest part of the school, and is used for teaching maths and ICT. It also holds some smaller classrooms for SEN teaching.
  • 'Science corridor': runs adjacent to the old building. Chemistry and physics are taught here. It is connected to the main building by a corridor with the library off it. The drama studio and gym are also connected to the science corridor.
  • 'West wing': holds the main SEN classroom and a sixth form chemistry lab.
  • 'East wing': contains a computer room and several offices.
  • 'Teaching block' or 'New building': the largest building of the school. Subjects taught here include modern foreign languages, geography, history, biology, chemistry, physics, English, religious studies and art.
  • 'Halls block': contains the canteen, main hall, sports hall and the music department.
  • 'Old technology block': several technology workshops as well as food technology areas.
  • 'New technology block': built in 2005, this contains up-to-date technology classrooms and workshop.[citation needed]

Sixth form centre[edit]

There are two buildings at the sixth form centre, where sixth form studies are taught, such as psychology, sociology and economics. An extension to the sixth form centre has now been added which is now open to staff and pupils, including a new information technology suite.

Notable former pupils[edit]

  • Gordon Bourne (1921–29) Obstetrician and author[10]
  • William Charles Langdon Brown CBE (1931–), Banker [11]
  • Captain Sir Robert Beaufin Irving OBE (1877–1954)[12]
  • Charlotte Methuen FRHistS (1964-), Church historian and Anglican priest
  • Raymond Spencer Millard, (1920–97), Civil Engineer[13]
  • William Kenneth Ward, (1918–95), Under-Secretary, Department of Trade[14]
  • Neil Cooper, (1973–), drummer for Therapy?, teaches drumming at QEGS.[citation needed]
  • Andrew Lewer MBE (1971-) Conservative Party politician

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Queen Elizabeth's Grammar School Profile". Retrieved 1 July 2010.
  2. ^ "The Independent: Average Level 3 point score per student Top 200 Comprehensive or Modern". Retrieved 1 July 2010. (Linking article)
  3. ^ "The Guardian: A-Levels: Comprehensives and Academies results 2009". London. 21 July 2008. Retrieved 1 July 2010.
  4. ^ "Ofsted: Queen Elizabeth's Grammar School". Retrieved 1 July 2010.
  5. ^ "Queen Elizabeth's Grammar School: Centenary Celebrations". Retrieved 1 July 2010.
  6. ^ a b COKAYNE, Sir Thomas (1520-92), of Ashbourne, Derbys. | History of Parliament Online
  7. ^ Carlisle (1808), Concise Description of Grammar School Foundations, vol.I, p.202
  8. ^ Stephen Wright, ‘Cokayne, Sir Thomas (1519–1592)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004 accessed 24 Feb 2010
  9. ^ a b "Queen Elizabeth's Grammar School: Brief History". Retrieved 1 July 2010.
  10. ^ ‘Bourne, Gordon Lionel’, Who's Who 2009, A & C Black, 2008; online edn, Oxford University Press, Dec 2008 accessed 18 Feb 2009
  11. ^ Brown, William Charles Langdon’, Who's Who 2009, A & C Black, 2008; online edn, Oxford University Press, Dec 2008 accessed 18 Feb 2009
  12. ^ ‘Irving, Captain Sir Robert Beaufin’, Who Was Who, A & C Black, 1920–2008; online edn, Oxford University Press, Dec 2007 accessed 18 Feb 2009
  13. ^ Millard, Raymond Spencer’, Who Was Who, A & C Black, 1920–2008; online edn, Oxford University Press, Dec 2007 accessed 18 Feb 2009
  14. ^ ‘WARD, William Kenneth’, Who Was Who, A & C Black, 1920–2008; online edn, Oxford University Press, Dec 2007 accessed 18 Feb 2009

External links[edit]