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It opened on 17 September 1912. At that time it was situated to the north of Vulcans Park, on the site now occupied by the hospital. The first principal was G.H. Woolatt Ph.D FIC., known as Dr. Woolatt. At the opening ceremony he spoke of his plan to divide the school into day secondary and trades departments.
The town was immensely proud of its school and for many years it was referred to as 'The College'.
The Education Act of 1944 meant that from 1945 two establishments co-existed on the same Park Lane site: the original college ("the Tech"); and the newly created Grammar School ("Workington Grammar School").
Speaking on the occasion of the school's 50th anniversary, Grammar School headmaster, E.H. Mander said, 'The foundation of the school originally was an act of faith, faith in the value of education, faith in the future of the local area centred in Workington, faith in the capacity of sons and daughters of local families to justify the new opportunity for the acquiring of learning and practical skills, and above all faith in the supremacy and triumph of the good and the best in life.' The speech is recorded in The Wyrkentonian, the Grammar School's magazine, golden jubilee edition.
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