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Whitgift School

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Whitgift School
Whitgift-School-crest.jpg
Motto Latin: Vincit qui patitur
("He who perseveres, conquers")
Established 1596
Type Independent school
Religion Church of England
Head Master Mr Christopher Ramsey[1]
School Captain Marcel Hedman
Founder John Whitgift, Archbishop of Canterbury
Location Haling Park
South Croydon
Greater London
CR2 6YT
England
51°21′36″N 0°06′05″W / 51.36°N 0.101389°W / 51.36; -0.101389Coordinates: 51°21′36″N 0°06′05″W / 51.36°N 0.101389°W / 51.36; -0.101389
Local authority Croydon
DfE URN 101837 Tables
Staff 200 (approx.)
Students 1,478
Gender Boys
Ages 10–18
Houses      Andrew's
     Brodie's
     Cross'
     Dodds
     Ellis'
     Mason's
     Smith's
     Tate's
Colours Gold and Navy
         
Publication Whitgift Life Magazine
Former pupils Old Whitgiftians
Patron Prince Andrew, Duke of York
Website www.whitgift.co.uk

Whitgift School is an independent day school with limited boarding (120 boys[2]) in South Croydon, London. Along with Trinity School of John Whitgift and Old Palace School it is owned by the Whitgift Foundation, a charitable trust. The school's headmaster is a member of the Headmasters' and Headmistresses' Conference.

History

Whitgift School was founded in 1596 by the Archbishop of Canterbury John Whitgift and opened in 1600.[3] It was founded as part of the Whitgift Foundation which had the aim of building a hospital and school in Croydon for the "poor, needy and impotent people" from the parishes of Croydon and Lambeth.[4] It is Croydon's oldest school.

The school was originally located in North End, Croydon. In 1931 the school moved to its current site, Haling Park, which was once home to Lord Howard of Effingham, the Lord High Admiral of the Fleet sent against the Spanish Armada.[5] Between 1871 and 1946 the school was known as Whitgift Grammar School, after which it relinquished its direct grant and became a fully independent school known as 'Whitgift School'.[6]

The present Headmaster, Dr Christopher Barnett, is the twenty-sixth in the School's history. There are approximately 650 boys in the Lower School and 650 boys in the Upper School. Haling Park retains the appearance of an attractive country estate with a large copse, many fine specimen trees, Prevost's Squirrels, maras, peafowl (peacocks), crowned and demoiselle cranes, flamingos and other exotic birds. The Founder's Garden, Water Gardens and Andrew Quadrangle provide reflective spaces as well as venues for plays, concerts and celebrations. The Whitgift Rose, created to mark the 400th Anniversary of the School, is widely planted throughout the grounds.

The original buildings have been supplemented by many additions and improvements including a Music School and Concert Hall, an integrated facility for science, technology, art and design together with library and resource centres, a separate Lower School building, and a major new Sports and Conference Centre which was opened in February 2005. A new Art Department, Performing Arts Centre and a new Sixth Form Centre were completed during the summer of 2011.

Originally a day school, boarding was introduced in 1992,[7] but a new boarding house was opened for the 2013–14 school year.[8]

Grounds

Whitgift is located in a 45-acre (18 ha) parkland site. The ship (a model of HMS Ark Royal) that features prominently on the top of "Big School" (the school hall) is a reminder of the history of the site. Additions since the 400th anniversary of the school have been a maze in the founder's garden, an aviary, an enclosure for Prevost's squirrels, ponds and a multimillion-pound sports complex.

Whitgift has a wide variety of animals, including peacocks which have graced the grounds since the 1930s, and flamingos.[9] In 2005 Sir David Attenborough visited the school to open the ponds, the enclosure of which also houses various waterfowl,[10] including Hawaiian geese, which the zoo successfully bred.

Admissions

Most boys are admitted to the School at the ages of 10 or 11. A smaller number of boys enter the School at 12, 13, 14 and 16. Entry is based on academic performance in entrance exams and interviews, and an assessment of a boy's ability to contribute to wider school life and benefit from the co-curricular activities offered.[11] Scholarships are awarded offering a remission of up to 50% of the school fees. Aside from academic scholarships, they may be awarded for particular talent in Music, Art, Design Technology, Sport or as an All-Rounder. A substantial number of bursaries are also awarded up to the value of the full fees.[12]

Uniform

When in the Lower School (Lower 1st (Year 6) to Upper 3rd (Year 9)), boys wear the standard school dark blue blazer with the Whitgift crest emblazoned on the chest pocket; blue shirt with the school crest emblazoned on the breast pocket; charcoal grey trousers; dark blue v-neck jumper with the school crest emblazoned on the chest (optional); black/grey socks and, if in the 1st Form (Years 6 & 7), the 1st Form tie (navy blue body with two yellow stripes running diagonally across the centre, encasing the school crest); or if in the 3rd Form (Years 8 & 9) and or 5th form (Years 10 & 11), the standard school tie with house colours. Students in years 10 and 11 wear a white shirt and those in the Sixth Form wear black, blue or dark grey suits with the Sixth Form tie. Sixth Form prefects wear the prefect tie (navy blue body with alternate diagonal rows of the Whitgift crest and thick royal purple stripes running down the tie).

Education

In year 7, boys must choose three languages to study; one Romance (French/Spanish), one inflected (German/Latin) and one Oriental (Japanese/Mandarin). In year 9, boys can drop a language, but can also take up either Italian or Ancient Greek[13] which is studied off-timetable.

In the Fifth Form, boys undertake a broad curriculum in a mixture of GCSE and IGCSE subjects. Boys are typically examined in at least 11 subjects. A majority of boys take IGCSEs in separate sciences (Biology, Chemistry & Physics), resulting in three qualifications, but the number of boys studying only Dual Award science is increasing in an effort to bolster results after a particularly mediocre year. A pupil must attain at least an A grade at GSCE level, in order to continue that subject in Sixth Form.[14] For entry to the Sixth Form, boys are required to achieve at least ten B grades at GCSE and one A.

Since 2005, Whitgift has offered the International Baccalaureate[15] Diploma Programme to the Sixth Form as an optional alternative to A-Levels, as well as BTEC qualifications in sport and business studies.

The school has eight houses and their colours are Andrew's (purple), Brodie's (pink), Cross's (red), Dodd's (silver), Ellis's (light blue), Mason's (royal blue), Smith's (gold) and Tate's (green). The Houses are named after former headmasters, headboys and founding Housemasters.

Co-curricular activities

Whitgift School offers co-curricular activities within the school. This is reflected in the sporting facilities as well as an array of musical activities.

Combined Cadet Force

Whitgift has a ombined cadet force.Training within the three sections (Army, RAF and RN) focuses on the development of personal responsibility, leadership, teamwork and self-reliance.

The school has partnerships with two local state schools St. Andrews C of E High School and Thomas More School, allowing their students to take part in CCF activities.[16] Each year an annual inspection takes place conducted by a senior figure of the armed forces, often a former student of the school. Although not designed to recruit for the armed forces, some students go on to win service scholarships.

Sport

The school has a sporting tradition, and fields teams in a range of sports. Whitgift boasts a state of the art £9 million sports and conference centre. It served as a training facility for the London 2012 Olympic Games,[17] and regularly hosts national competitions in a wide range of sports.[18] The school also has a Health & Fitness Centre, a 55 station gym and group exercise studio open to students and their families.[19] The school was also once a training ground to Crystal Palace[20] The Women’s GB Handball team has trained on occasions at Whitgift School as has the England Korfball team[21]

The first recorded match held on the school ground occurred in 1898 when the school played University College School.[22] Since 2000, the school ground has hosted several matches for county club Surrey. The ground hosted its first match for Surrey when they played a List-A match against Warwickshire. From 2000 to 2011, the ground has hosted 12 List-A matches.[23] In 2003, the ground held its first first-class match when Surrey played Nottinghamshire. From 2003 to 2011, the ground held 9 first-class matches.[24] The cricket ground can hold up to 5,000 spectators.

Whitgift is the only British school to win national titles in the four major team sports, cricket, hockey, football and rugby.[25] In rugby, Whitgift has twice won the National Daily Mail Cup (1999, 2003) at Under 15 level, and more recently the 1st XV won and retained the Daily Mail RBS Cup (2010, 2011) at under 18 level.[26] In hockey, 2011 saw Whitgift complete an historic double by winning the National Indoor Hockey Championships at Under 15 and Under 18 levels in the same year.[25] The school also become national Under 18 golf champions for the first time in 2014 winning on the historic Scottish links of Carnoustie. The school has links to the academies of Charlton, Chelsea and Crystal Palace football clubs, to Surrey County Cricket Club, London Wasps rugby club and East Grinstead Hockey Club.[27]

Whitgift has a number of former sporting professionals currently coaching at the school. These include the former Surrey cricketer David Ward, Colin Pates the former Chelsea and Arsenal defender, Neil Kendrick, the former Surrey spin bowler, and Steve Kember, the former Palace and Chelsea midfielder and manager at Selhurst Park. The school has links to the academies of Charlton, Chelsea and Crystal Palace football clubs, to Surrey County Cricket Club, London Wasps rugby club and East Grinstead Hockey Club.[28]

Cricket ground

The first recorded match held on the school ground occurred in 1898 when the school played University College School.[22]

In recent years the school ground has hosted several matches for county club Surrey. The ground hosted its first match for Surrey in 2000, when they played a List-A match against Warwickshire. From 2000 to present, the ground has hosted 12 List-A matches.[23] In 2003, the ground held its first first-class match when Surrey played Nottinghamshire. From 2003 to present, the ground has held 9 first-class matches.[24] The cricket ground can cope with up to 5,000 spectators.

Headmasters

  • 1600–1601 Ambrose Brygges[29]
  • 1601–1606 John Ireland[29]
  • 1606–1616 Robert Davies[29]
  • 1616–1629 William Nicolson[29]
  • 1629–1648 John Webb[29]
  • 1651–1662 Thomas Day[29]
  • 1668–1675 William Crowe[29]
  • 1675–1681 John Shepheard[30]
  • 1681–1712 John Caesar[30]
  • 1712–1742 Henry Mills[30]
  • 1742–1751 Samuel Staveley[31]
  • 1751–1774 John Taylor Lamb[31]
  • 1774–1801 James Hodgson[32]
  • 1801–1812 John Rose[32]
  • 1812–1843 John Bisset[32]
  • 1843–1865 George Coles[33]
  • 1865–1871 William Ingrams[34]
  • 1871–1902 Robert Brodie[35]
  • 1903–1927 Samuel Andrew[36]
  • 1928–1939 Stanley Gurner[37]
  • 1939–1946 Gerald Ellis[38]
  • 1946–1961 Edward Marlar[39]
  • 1961–1970 Michael Hugill[40]
  • 1970–1991 David Raeburn[41]
  • 1991–2017 Dr Christopher Barnett[42]
  • 2017– Christopher Ramsey

Notable alumni

Former pupils are known as 'Old Whitgiftians'. Notable alumni include:

Academia, medicine and science

Business

Law, government and politics

Media, music and the arts

Military

Sport

Other

Notable staff

Southern Railway Schools Class

The school lent its name to a locomotive in the Southern Railway V Class. This class was known as the Schools Class because all 40 locomotives were named after prominent English public schools. "Whitgift", SR no. 916 and BR no. 30916, was built in 1934 and withdrawn in 1962. The Whitgift nameplate that was formerly at the front of the locomotive is now on display in the Raeburn Library in the school. Hornby Models created an OO gauge replica of the 916 Whitgift Schools Class locomotive. Whitgift has one on display in the Raeburn Library underneath the Whitgift nameplate from the 4–4–0 train.

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External links