Tonbridge School

Tonbridge School
MottoDeus Dat Incrementum
(God Gives Growth)
Established1553
TypePublic school
HeadmasterMr. Tim Haynes
FounderSir Andrew Judde
LocationTonbridge
Kent
TN9 1JP
England
Studentsc. 770
GenderBoys
Ages13 to 18
Houses7 boarding, 5 day
Websitewww.tonbridge-school.co.uk
Coordinates:


Tonbridge School is a British independent all boys boarding school in Tonbridge, founded in 1553 by Sir Andrew Judde. It is a member of the Eton Group.

The school occupies an extensive site of about 150 acres (607,000 m²) on the northern edge of the town of Tonbridge, Kent, and is largely self-contained within that site. Since the foundation the school has been rebuilt twice on the original site.

There are currently 750 boys in the school, aged between 13 and 18, with 429 boarders and 321 day pupils.

The current Headmaster is Tim Haynes, who has been in post since September 2005. He was previously Headmaster of Monmouth School.

History

The school was founded in 1553 by Sir Andrew Judde under the Letters Patent of King Edward VI.

The Charter ordained that the Governors of the school after the death of the Founder were to be the Worshipful Company of Skinners, one of the oldest City Livery Companies.

Sir Andrew, himself a distinguished member of this Company, left property in the City of London and in the parish of St Pancras as an endowment for the school. The income from these estates is at the disposal of the Governors for the general benefit of the Foundation. The memory of Sir Andrew Judd and other benefactors is honoured in an annual Commemoration Service, held on Skinners' Day at the very end of the Summer Term.

The school first really began to flourish in the C19th when it and other Public Schools supplied the demand for capable men to administer and soldier for the British Empire. It is recorded that alumni served in the Crimean War, the Indian Mutiny, the Boer War and even under the 8th Earl of Elgin during the Second Opium War. Indeed Headmaster Knox once noted that "wherever the Union Flag stands o'ershadowed, there you will find a Tonbridge boy ready to bring it into the light".

The Edwardian period saw considerable sporting success for the school. In 1905 and 1906 its 1st XI cricket team enjoyed two unbeaten seasons under its captain, Archibald Featherstonehaugh (pronounced "Fanshaw"). In the years that followed Tonbridge produced many first class cricketers, culminating ultimately in Colin Cowdrey in the late 1940s.

World War I

The school suffered heavy losses during the Great War. Not only were many alumni killed, but also several members of staff who volunteered for service. The fabric of the school was unscathed, although in 1916 a German zeppelin passed over Tonbridge, without dropping any bombs.

World War II

In June 1941 a V1 bomb launched by the Nazis almost succeeded in killing Headmaster Eric Whitworth when it landed near Ferox Hall. A bomb dropped by a lone German bomber almost destroyed the Chapel earlier in the War.

However, papers found by the Allies after the fall of Berlin suggested that Hitler's staff intended to make Tonbridge School the Upper-Medway regional HQ for occupying forces, had Operation Sea Lion gone ahead.

During the War an anti-tank trench was dug alongside the Head (the school's main cricket pitch). The OTC (Officer Training Corps) issued the groundsmen with grenades, rifles and German phrase-books.

On the recommendation of Edmund Ironside, 1st Baron Ironside, Chief of the Imperial General Staff and an Old Tonbridgian, an evacuation plan was drawn up by the school in case of a German invasion. Boys were to disperse across the country while teachers formed resistance cells.

Post-War years

Lawrence Waddy took over as Headmaster in 1949. The Tonbridge he inherited was still a largely Victorian institution; fagging and ritual caning were still in place, and sport was considered more important than academia. Over the next 40 years fagging was abolished (ending in 1965), the intellectual life of the school was revitalised (particularly under the Headmastership of the scholarly Michael McCrum), and 1st Year Socials were set up with neighbouring girls' schools. By the 1990s the school was larger and richer than ever before, regularly appearing in the top 50 in independent schools examination league tables. The Headmaster until 2005 was Martin Hammond.

In recent years, Tonbridge has become well-known and respected for its sporting achievements. Tonbridge's 1st XV rugby team has been undefeated for 3 straight seasons, against opponents such as Wellington, Radley, Dulwich College, Eton and Harrow. Furthermore, the 1st XI Hockey team was unbeaten in its regular fixtures in the 2006/7 season, while the Athletics squad has enjoyed two unbeaten seasons - 2005/6 and 2006/7.

Notable Old Tonbridgians

This list may be incomplete and may contain inaccuracies. A list of confirmed notable Old Tonbridgians is available on this page of the school website.

Houses

There are twelve houses at Tonbridge School; 7 boarding, and 5 day houses. Each house has its own house colours. The Houses, in order of foundation:
School HouseBoardingBlack and blue
Judde HouseBoardingMagenta and black
Park HouseBoardingWhite, purple and black
Hill SideBoardingRed and black
ParksideBoardingYellow and blue
Ferox HallBoardingOrange, black, and yellow
Manor HouseBoardingGreen and red
Welldon HouseDayLight and dark blue
Smythe HouseDayChocolate and Cerise
WhitworthDayGreen and white
Cowdrey HouseDayPurple and green
Oakeshott HouseDayScarlet and Gold


Each house contains approximately 65 students. The names are all drawn from the location of the house itself e.g Park House, Parkside House, School House (originally located in the main school building) or Hill Side House, or are names of benefactors, headmasters and others who have left their mark on the school over the years e.g Smythe House, named after Sir Thomas Smythe (see also Smythe Library), or Judde House, named after the founder of the school, Whitworth and Welldon are both named after headmasters of the school and of course Cowdrey House, named after Colin Cowdrey, arguably the most famous Tonbridge alumnus. The only exception is Ferox Hall, which takes it's name from the Latin for ferocious.

Competitions between the houses are held in every field, particularly sport, but there are also other competitions such as debating and design & technology. In these competitions there are age categories: Novi (Sometimes form Junior with 2nd year), Junior ( Either Novi and 2nd year, or 2nd and 3rd year) and Senior (Either 3rd Year and 6th form or 6th form). Perhaps the most prestigious of these is the inter-house shooting competition, as the winning house is awarded the magnificent Hansard Trophy, named after Cornelius Hansard, an Old Tonbridgian. The trophy is currently held by School House.

Buildings

Recent additions to the school's infrastructure have been the Vere Hodge Centre and the E.M. Forster theatre. Both are of modernist design, incorporating quantities of glass and steel.

The Chapel was reopened in October 1995 after it was severely damaged by fire in 1988. The Marcussen organ is a four-manual tracker-action instrument with 66 speaking stops, including two 32' stops.

The Smythe Library, built in 1962, was designed by Sir William Holford in 1962. It contains approximately 26,000 volumes, some of which have been in the school's possession since the 17th century.

The Headmaster's House (located next to the High Street) is in fact the oldest part of the school, dating in parts from the 16th century. Its structure contains Roman masonry, most likely quarried from a temple to the god Priapus that is believed to have stood by the Medway near where Tonbridge Castle stands today.

Old Judd, which now houses the Modern Languages Department, was built in the 19th century and is remarkable for the enclosed terrace garden at its rear. The reason that the garden is raised several feet above ground level is that it was in fact built directly on top of the building that formerly occupied the site.

Facilities

Tonbridge School is well known in the local community for its excellent facilities, particularly its sport facilities. It has three hockey astros - one floodlit water based astro and two sand based astros, which are used by Tunbridge Wells Hockey Club and Sevenoaks Hockey Club as well as by the School itself in the Lent term. It has a six lane floodlit tartan athletics track, which is used extensively all year round by Tonbridge Athletics Club, and which Kelly Holmes was often seen to be training on. The School is also famous for its extremely well maintained pitches - indeed, the main cricket pitch (The Head) is often used for county level cricket matches.

Currently thanks to donations the new sports centre is under construction. It is expected to be completed by early to mid 2008. It will include a new swimming pool, indoor sport facilities (such as indoor hockey) and a gym, and due to its excellent location overlooking the athletics track and water based astro, will form an integral part of the local sporting community.

Motto and traditions

The school's motto (Deus Dat Incrementum) is not to be confused with that of Westminster School, London (Dat Deus Incrementum). The two have quite different meanings due to their word order. Whereas Tonbridge's lays emphasis on the fact that God, and nobody else, gives growth, Westminster's emphasises the fact that God gives growth and does not, for example, receive it, buy it or rent it. However, the motto "Dat Deus Incrementum" can be seen on the main school building at the entrance to the Physics department. The motto is the same as that of Marlborough College.

In Tonbridge terminology 1st Year boys are known as novi (rhyming with "no guy") which in Latin means "new males". However, according to Classical Latin pronunciation, the word should actually be pronounced as "no vee". To an Ancient Roman's ears the Tonbridge pronunciation would indicate the Latin word novae, which unfortunately means "new women".

Southern Railway School's Class

The School lent its name to the sixth steam locomotive (Engine 905) in the Southern Railway's Class V of which there were 40. This Class was also known as the Schools Class because all 40 of the class were named after prominent English public schools. Tonbridge, as it was called, was built in 1930, along with the rest of the initial ten locomotives in the class. The locomotive bearing the School's name was withdrawn in the early 1960s.

See also

References

Further reading

  • Barry Orchard - A Look at the Head and the Fifty (1991, James & James)

External links

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An independent school in the United Kingdom is a school relying, for all of its funding, upon private sources, so almost invariably charging school fees. In England and Wales the term public school
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geographic coordinate system enables every location on the earth to be specified by the three coordinates of a spherical coordinate system aligned with the spin axis of the Earth.
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Motto
"Dieu et mon droit" [2]   (French)
"God and my right"
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"God Save the Queen" [3]
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An independent school is a school which is not dependent upon national or local government for financing its operation and is instead operated by tuition charges, gifts, and in some cases the investment yield of an endowment.
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A boarding school is a usually fee-charging school where some or all pupils not only study, but also live during term time, with their fellow students and possibly teachers. The word 'boarding' in this sense means to provide food and lodging.
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Tonbridge

Tonbridge ()
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The Eton Group consists of twelve British independent schools:
  • Eton College
  • Bryanston School, Blandford
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Tonbridge

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Kent

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Monmouth School is a public school for boys in Monmouth, South Wales. It is run under trust by the Worshipful Company of Haberdashers, one of the Livery Companies. It was founded in 1614 by William Jones, local to the area, and first began teaching in 1615.
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Letters patent are a type of legal instrument in the form of an open letter issued by a monarch or government, granting an office, right, monopoly, title, or status to a person or to some entity such as a corporation. The opposite of letters patent (Lat.
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monarch (see sovereignty) is a type of ruler or head of state. Monarchs almost always inherit their titles and are rulers for life; that is, they have no term limit. Historically monarchs have been more or less absolute rulers.
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Edward VI

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Born 12 September 1537(1537--)
Hampton Court Palace
Died 6 July 1553 (aged 17)
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For other uses of charter, see Charter (disambiguation).


A charter is a document bestowing certain rights on a town, city, university, land or institution; sometimes used as a loan of money.
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Worshipful Company of Skinners (known as The Skinners' Company) is one of the Livery Companies of the City of London. It was originally an association of fur traders.
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The 107 Livery Companies are trade associations based in the City of London, almost all of which are known as the "Worshipful Company of" the relevant trade or profession.
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William Alexander (1824–1911) was an Irish cleric in the Church of Ireland.

Life

He was born in Derry on the 13 April 1824, the third child of Rev Robert Alexander. He was educated at Tonbridge School and Brasenose College, Oxford.
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