A History of St George's
The original St George's "National School" opened in Ramsgate in 1841. A plot of land measuring 92 feet by 250 feet, between Church Street and School Lane was purchased on 6th April 1839 by the Rev. Richard Harvey from Mr James Smith at a cost of £498. This was the original site of the school.
The school was founded to “increase the means of providing a moral and religious education according to the tenets of the established Church in England for the children of both sexes of the poor of the parishes of Ramsgate and St. Laurence and to engraft therein a suitable course of instruction to their station in life ”. Initially teaching was provided in separate classes for approximately 130 boys and 150 girls of primary and secondary ages, plus 150 infants. The buildings were added to over the years, firstly in 1858 and 1859, but the Head Teacher had to wait until 1914 for a study - the year that Mr John Roe retired, and handed over the headship to Mr Ernest F.G. Chapman.
The date 1864, which was carved on the front of the schools (and still exists in the new school) commemorates important extra building that took place at that time. Symmetrical additions for both the boys' and girls' departments were made to the 1841 buildings (the core of which became the old school Hall). For many, this was as important a date as 1841 in the school's history, and a centenary celebration was held in April 1964.
Back in 1869, fees for the pupils were 2 old pence a week for the children of a working class family, and six shillings a quarter for those of tradesmen. Teachers received between £50 and £80 a year, with a share in the gratuity according to efficiency. A Thanet Guide of 1869 says that the National Schools were erected in 1841 to provide instruction for 130 boys and 150 girls of, in today's terms, both primary and secondary ages. The buildings consisted of a girls' schoolroom and boys' schoolroom (each with a basement and house to accommodate staff).
In 1874, it was decided to provide separate accommodation for the infants in the form of a new building to be erected in King Street and this was completed in July 1875. More work was done to the original buildings at Church Road in 1877. The 1877 statistics showed :
Upper Boys 176
Lower Boys 292
Upper Girls 90
Lower Girls 292
By 1890, the school role showed 2094 pupils, and there are references to overcrowding and dismal conditions. On one occasion, 6 different groups were being taught in one room. At the end of the 19th Century, the curriculum included such subjects as grammar and repetition, physiology and physiography, singing, book-keeping and magnetism and electricity. Pupils also had to do Drill and the school had a Drill Sergeant. In these early days, the school was visited by the Archbishop of Canterbury and the explorer Ernest Shackleton.
An entry in the Log Book for February 26th, 1914 states very simply : "The Lower School ceased to exist." Pupils were transferred to the new Ellington School and the infants took their place in the Lower School. This only lasted until 1925 when the Infants Department was closed. Further alterations changed the buildings once more. In 1925 into 1926, the schools were reconstructed almost entirely, at a cost of £8500 and on St George's Day 1926, it was inaugurated by Viscount Burnham, the Minister of Education as St George's Selective Central Schools, which meant that pupils could be received at the age of 11, by examination.
In 1928, the school consisted of a large Central Hall, 14 classrooms, 1 Science room, 1 Domestic Subjects room, a Needlework room, and a Handicraft room. Each classroom had an open fire-place and was thoroughly ventilated. It had a complete electrical supply, with gas also used in the Science room and Domestic science room. There were 560 places at this time, 330 for boys and 230 girls. Pupils were aged 10 and a half to 16.
During the Second World War, St George's was closed briefly and then evacuated to Riverway, Stafford to remove it from the danger of bombing and possible invasion. It reopened in 1943 with 97 pupils, the others remaining in Stafford. The 1944 Education Act meant that the school became a 'Secondary Modern' and in 1949, they became 'Controlled Voluntary' schools. Further permanent building work and expansion in Church Road was impossible.
In September 1967, St George's Girls C of E School moved from Ramsgate to new buildings in Westwood Road, Broadstairs. The Inauguration Ceremony at the new site was led by the Rev. Harcourt Samuel (Chairman of the Divisional Executive) with His Grace, the Archbishop of Canterbury (The Most Reverend and Right Honourable Arthur Michael Ramsey) who declared the buildings open. Also present was Mr E.T. Ashley Smith, the County Architect and Miss M Kennett, Headmistress of the Girls' School. The vote of thanks came from The Rev G.W. Loughborough, Chairman of the School Governors and Vicar of St George's, Ramsgate.
In the Girls' School Magazine of 1966, Miss Kennett wrote about the new buildings:
"As we travel along Westwood Road towards St Peter's and watch certain masses of iron and steel taking shape we are a conscious of a thrill of excitement, for here at last are the beginnings of the new St George's School.
The material conditions for working and living will be wonderful compared to our present ones. It will be our duty to take with us all that is best of our traditions so that the true St George's spirit is seen to flourish at Westwood Road just as well as when we lived under the friendly shadow of St George's Church."
In the 1971 edition of 'The Georgian', the then-Headmaster of the Boys' School, Mr F. Lowry stated that "the school still occupies the dreary 19th Century buildings which are set in the midst of decaying housing near the centre of town. Cramped surroundings and classrooms on dispersed sites present a difficult educational environment."
The St George's Boys C of E School started moving to the site in 1973, after the construction of more facilities, but it was not until a fire in April 1975 at the Ramsgate buildings that the final merge began. Until then, although considered one school from April 26th 1973, the girls and boys were not together. By 1976 it was officially a mixed School at Westwood Road called St George's Church of England School. It was at the start of the 1975/76 year that the names of the Houses were changed. This was not for the first time. The Original Houses were Gables (Green), Campbells (Red), Athletics (Blue) and Wrens (Yellow). Later at the Girls' School these became St Monica (which became Winchester - Green), St Dorothea (which became York - Yellow), St Catherine (Canterbury - Blue) and St Theresa (Rochester - Red). The Boys' Houses had previously been Bartram (Green), Hertslet (Blue), Crawfurd (Red) and White-Thomson (Yellow), names after four former vicars of Ramsgate.
In September 1997, the Sixth Form was reintroduced to the school and a Sixth Form Block was also built. These buildings stood until early 2010 when they were knocked down and a new school building was built next to the site. The School was officially opened on Wednesday 29 September 2010 by The Right Reverend Trevor Willmott, Bishop of Dover. Staff and students had been using the building since the week of St George's Day, April 2010.
By 2012, following expansion of the school intake there were 8 Houses - including Norwich (Pink) and Gloucester (Grey), but it was decided to return to 4 Houses - Winchester absorbed into Canterbury, Gloucester joined Exeter, York became part of Rochester and Norwich and Salisbury merged to form a bigger Salisbury.
September 2016 saw the opening of our new 'Primary Phase' as the school expanded to become an "all-through" with an age range of 4 to 19. in 2018, we were honoured to be visited by the Archbishop of Canterbury, The Most Reverend Justin Welby, who met with pupils and staff at both sites in March 2018. We were very privileged to be chosen by the Archbishop as the place where he announced the new Bishop of Dover, Rose Hudson-Wilkin, on 28th June 2019.
We have an Old Boys and an Old Girls Association that many former pupils belong to.
|2017 - present||Mr Adam Mirams|
|2009 – 2017||Mrs Kim Stoner|
|1997 - 2009||Mr Keith Rumblo|
|1988 - 1997||Mr A John Fletcher (from September 1988)|
|Summer Term 1988||Mr Alistair Hogarth (interim)|
|1973 – 1988||Mr Norman Morland (retired April 1988)|
Former Headmasters and Headmistresses
We have a number of records, but many are hand-written and quite hard to decipher, more than 150 years later. Updates will be produced when more information is unearthed!
|Boys' Headteachers||Girls' Headteachers|
|1853 - 1879 Mr John Mead||
? - 1860 Miss Maria Gamble
|1879 - 1881 Mr George Weeks (interim)||
1860 - 1864 Miss Mary J Alger
1881 - 1914 Mr John Roe
|1864 - 1874 Miss Emma Carr|
1914 - 1936 Mr Ernest F. G. Chapman
|1874-1911 Miss Hannah Hathway|
1936 - 1942 Mr John S. Houlton
|1911-1926 Miss Caroline Croucher|
1942 - 1953 Mr Wilfred Brown
|1926-1952 Miss Florence Armstrong|
1953 - 1956 Mr Frank White
|1952-1957 Miss Ruth M Downer|
1956 - 1962 Mr A. W. Champion
|1957-1958 Miss Kathleen Brooks (interim)|
1963 Mr E. H. P. Evans (interim)
|1958-1972 Miss Marjorie Kennett|
1963 - 1972 Mr Fred Lowry
|1972-1973 Miss Marjorie Woodward (interim)|
|1972 - 1973 Mr Bryan Straw (interim)||
Notes from the 19th Century and early 20th Century
Records from 1841 to 1914 are scarce, though articles in early editions of the Georgian in the late 1920s and early 1930s give us quite a lot of information.
We also have handwritten log books going back almost to the first year of the school.
A large figure in ths early history of the school is Mr John Roe, Headteacher from 1881 to 1914 and a member of staff for many years before (possibly from 1864). "Mr Roe would have yielded to no-one in his affection for the school, in whose service he had spent so many years of courageous and strenuous work. He was keenness and energy personified. He regarded his School, and rightly, as second to none, for it was founded by him on the motto 'Thorough!'. His solicitude that the boys under his regime should become first-class citizens was just as important to him, and probably more so, as that they should gain first-class certificates in this or that examination. A man of sterling qualities and uprightness of purpose, he desired above all to find these same qualities in his pupils. He never could forget his happy association with St George's." John Roe passed away in 1930.
Early records mention frequent deaths of pupils. In 1928, Jack Allen passed away at the end of the Summer Holidays. In 1930, Colin James Hammond was blown over the East Pier in a strong gale in January. In January 1935, second year Arthur Bass died after a sudden illness. In August 1937, George Stephen Mumford met with a fatal accident. In March 1939, another pupil James Rice died suddenly and unexpectedly.
"When I started school in 1886, St George's was really a double school - known as the Commercial and Lower Schools. There were Girls' and Boys' Departments. Standard 1 led up to Standard 7 and ex 8. After morning assembly with Miss Hathway, the whole school joined in tables (including 14 x and 16 x), or catechism. Cookery lessons, given by a tall stately lady in long sweeping frocks were first started in the school house kitchen. (The school house was between the girls' and boys' buildings).
"For some years we had the very popular Rose Quen Festival at the annual prize-giving at the end of June. Once it was held in a large garden where Clarendon House now stands. Usually it took place in the large classroom which had a gallery at one end. The Rose Queen was elected by the pupils, wore a long cream dress embroidered with wild roses, wore a lined sash and her crown of real flowers was made by Hutching's (the florist) in Harbour Street. The last year's Queen had a white gown embroidered with forgetmenots and a blue lined sash.
"The Queen's Captain and her bard carried flower-decked lances. Humour was introduced into this colourful event by the character of the Tardy Pupil and several songs were sung including:-
"I am the Captain of the Rose Queen's band,
I take my stand at the Queen's right hand
If anybody harms her I will fight him hard
(BAND) : And so will we!"
Written by Mrs Wraight, in 1961
Notes from the 1920s, 1930s, 1940s and 1950s
The school was visited by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Cosmo Gordon Lang, on February 20th 1933. He told the pupils that if they wanted any place in he world that they would have to win it. The world had no place for slackers. Each must concentrate his or her mind and will, and thus gain the force and strength to win a place in the world. They would not only live to be proud of their school, but their school would be proud of them.
Documents written by pupils, former pupils and staff in the mid-20th Century tell us much about the characters from St George's History.
A number of these figures had Houses named after them in the Boys' School.
The Revd. Harry Bartram,
The Revd. E.L.A. Hertslet, "a real friend to everyone in the school." "I remember how he used to get really put out at any coughing during school services in Church."
The Right Revd. Lionel Payne Crawfurd, Lord Bishop of Stafford and former Vicar of Ramsgate from 1907-1914.
The Revd. W.A.R. Ball who "gave me a knowledge of religion and the love of God which has never left me."
Archbishop Lang - "Visits by Dr Lang were always high spots".
Dr Hewlett Johnson,
Bishop Rose of Dover,
The Revd. Jackman
Sir Cecil Hertslet, who was a courtly gentleman with a pointed white beard. He became a familiar figure in the school, where he gave talks on Belgium and its gallant stand against overwhelming German armies from his personal experience as British Consul in Antwerp in 1914. Anecdotes about his parrot, Leopold, were always amusing. His wife, Lady Hertslet was a charming lady, who frequently visited and inspected needlework and took part in Bazaars held in school.
Councillor Mrs E.R. Dunn, affectionately know as Auntie Flo, was a frequent cheery visitor to the school and always anxious to help with prizes and school funds. She was especially keen on deportment and physical exercises.
Mr Charles Armstrong, who had been Principal of Peterborogh Art College and retired with his wife to Ramsgate when his daughter Miss Armstrong became Headmistress. He became a close friend of the school and was also very keen on hockey. He Spent most Saturday mornings at Jacky Baker's ground coaching the school team. During end of term examinations he was kept busy marking all the handwriting and art.
Miss F. M. Armstrong, Headmistress 1926-1952 of the Girls' School. Former pupils will always remember her gentleness of manner and her wise leadership of the school in it's early stages as a Selective Central School, in the gay days of journeys abroad, in the difficult days of evacuation, in the re-opening of the school in Ramsgate in 1942 and in times of sirens and long periods spent in the Ramsgate Tunnels, always showing is how to make the best of things. Truly she shared the spirit of St George - in her steadfast fight for the right, in her quick sympathy and help for those in trouble and in much suffering nobly borne.
Miss R. M. Downer, Headmistress of the Girls' School, 1953-1957. She was remembered as a very caring lady, who knew the girls very well and would always go the extra mile to look after them. She was very religious and undertook missionary work after leaving St George's.
Sir Moses Montefiore, the Jewish philanthropist visited quite frequently, as did Dame Janet Stancomb Wills - "Every inch a Mayor and very interested".
Miss C. E. Croucher, Headmistress from 1911-1926 will never be forgotten by any whom she taught. There was no clock-watching with 'Carrie'; her lessons ran on long after everyone else had gone home; and they ranged over many subjects. A history lesson might wander to geography, science or literature but our attention was gripped by her forceful personality and dry humour and facts were learnt for all time. All odd minutes before Assembly etc were put to good use - memorising Bible passages, tables or spellings or in voice exercises.
Miss Croucher had a happy knack of coming into a classroom a few minutes before 12 or 4.14pm with a board full of 'sums' to be done correctly before we went home. She had no time for laziness and would strom at a stupid answer - "Go and put your head in a bag, so-and-so!" Yet we all sensed the kind heart behind her brusque manner and loved as well as respected her.
She gave up many hours after 4.15 and on Saturday and Sunday mornings to coach for external examinations and to train promising students as pupil-teachers.
Being so occupied with school-work, she had no thought for her own appearance - her stockings being often wrinkled down and hat awry. For many years she was never seen without her hat - usually a broad-rimmed one, trimmed with feathers in winter and flowers in the summer.
Miss K Brooks was acting-Head of the Girls' School on two occasions, first when Miss Armstrong retired, and then again from the time that Miss Downer left, until Miss Kennett took over in September 1958. She started as an infant at the school, carried on as a junior, senior, monitor, member of staff, Deputy Head and acting Head - a splendid record, and a true St Georgian. There cannot be many people (or anyone else at all?) to have spent 55 years in one school. A versatile teacher, teaching art, scripture, history and music with equal success!
World War II
Log entry, Tuesday 28th May 1940: Air raid warning siren went at about 11.45. School took shelter in tunnel. All Clear sounded at about 12.30. Afternoon school started a few minutes late. Air Raid Warden and Police Officer visited in the afternoon to fit extensions to respirators. Evacuation preparations continued.
Log entry : Saturday 1st June 1940: School met for final instructions. Evacuation party to leave Ramsgate Sunday 2nd June for Staffordshire. School closed. Formal school will re-open Wednesday 5th June at St Mary's C of E School, Stafford.
List of leavers at the time show that many went into jobs in Birmingham and the industrial Midlands.
St George's Schools reopened in Ramsgate on 13th April 1942, as a Mixed School under Miss F Armstrong, with assistance from Miss M Parsons and Mr R Woodward, both recalled from Stafford after 22 months of evacuation. Mr John Houlton had unfortunately tendered his resignation having (according to The Georgian magazine) "sacrificed himself for the school. A breakdown in health necessitated his retirement." After Christmas 1942, the school returned to being separate Boys' and Girls' schools, and remianed that way until the merger of the schools in the 1970s.
On their arrival at the school, some classrooms were available, but the Central Hall was being used as a British Restaurant and one classroom as the kitchen for it. THe Housemaster's room was a food store, one room a clothing store for the American Red Cross, other rooms were storing all sorts of equipment and furniture that had been moved out. Mixed classes were taught, except in Physical Education and what would now be called Technology classes.
School hours were 9.30 to 12.15, 1.45 to 4.15pm.
On the first day back there was an alert at noon, lasting 20 minutes. Another sounded at 3.10pm, again about 20 minutes.
There was a fractured collar bone for a boy in his first PE lesson back on 14th April as well as another alert at 3pm. There were further alerts on the 15th, 16th and 17th April.
On the 20th April, the school attended a service in the crypt of St George's Church, with the Vicar, Revd. Farnsworth.
On 23rd April 1942 there was another church service for St George's Day. The flag was flown (with permission from the Chief of Police). There were special lessons and a greetings telegram arrived from those still in Stafford.
Miss Armstrong's log book continues with frequent alerts and every day life trying to continue normally, until school broke up for the holidays on Thursday 30th July 1942. The inter-house cup had taken place in both Ramsgate and Stafford. St Theresa won the Girls' and Hertslet the Boys'. School retuned on 1st September, as did the alerts.
On March 16th 1943, Miss Armstrong produced a report which stated that 'it was a joy to see the energy produced in the South-east Coast sunshine as compared with the languid "sodden unkind" climate of the Midlands.' 'I am happy to record the good behaviour and genuine endeavours of both boys and girls under conditions of especial difficulty, and my grateful appreciation of the painstaking devotion to duty and the loyalty of the staff during the nine months of preparatory re-establishment of the school as during normal times.'
The St Georgian names many former pupils who saw service, were wounded and / or captured.
Deaths recorded by the St Georgian :
Frank Walker, Flying Officer - flying accident 1944
I. J. Wigley - died in a base camp in Thailand, November 1943
Jack Thacker - killed in Normandy, June 1944
Harold Comfort - killed in action aboard a Second Front Landing Craft.
McKenzie died while with the RAF, 1943
Eric Freeman was killed on active service in Italy, 1944
Colin King, who was before the War in the Treasury Office, Whitehall, was killed over Berlin in January 1943, as a Pathfinder Sergeant-Navigator.
Sidney Frederick Gueran (2 October 1916 – 18 September 1944) made three first team appearances for Southampton FC in 1937. His career was cut short when he was killed during the Battle of Arnhem.
He was born in Grays, Essex before moving to Ramsgate as a child where he joined St George's and played for the school, before representing Ramsgate Schools and Kent. In 1931, the Georgian stated their high hopes that he would one day play professional football. He joined Arsenal as an 18-year-old in May 1935 and was "farmed out" to play for Margate, Arsenal's nursery side.
Southampton's manager, Tom Parker (formerly an Arsenal player), used his connections to sign Gueran on loan in March 1936. Described as "a thoughtful and constructive inside-forward", Gueran spent most of his "Saints" career in the reserves, but was given a run-out in the first team in the last match of the 1936/37, and then at the start of the following season.
In 1938, he was transferred permanently to Exeter City but failed to break into the first-team and "retired" from professional football later that year.
Later career and death
On the outbreak of War, Gueran enlisted in the Royal Engineers as a sapper, attached to the 1st Parachute Squadron and was killed on the 2nd day of the Battle of Arnhem. He is commemorated on the Groesbeek Memorial in the Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery.
From the St Georgian, Midsummer 1945:
"Victory in Europe, suddenly though it came in the end, did not find the school unprepared. A Special Form of Service had already been prepared, and was said and sung not only by every boy and girl in our Schools, but also by many parents and other adults who came in to join our Service of Thanksgiving.
A natural consequence of the Victory in Europe has been the closing of the tunnel entrance and the Warden's Post in the School Playground."
Notes from the 1960s
A Unique School by Mr F. Lowry
I was Headmaster of St George's Boys' School from 1963 until 1972 and it provided me with the happiest experiences of my life. There were serious, even tragic, occasions but it is the lighthearted ones which I prefer to recall, especially the voices of the boys.
It was impossible to categorise St George's. The school is unique.
An Inspector looked at the buildings with an air of an entomologist who had just discovered a rare bug. "These are the worst secondary school buildings in the South of England. Really, this school shouldn't exist." But exist it did, and was always full of vigour, casting a spell of great affection upon many who came in contact with it: boys, old boys, teachers and parents.
On my appointment, Sydney Winter, a dedicated governor and Old Georgian, showed me the buildings.
"Well, what do you think of them?" The look of pride in his eyes was so great that all I could do was gulp and reply "Very cosy".
Much later I was able to take photographs of the school in order to belabour any teacher in my next school who had the temerity to complain about conditions. "If you think this is bad then take a look at this."
Buildings, however, do not make schools, and the battered compact old walls possessed one advantage. A bad boy found it difficult to find a spot which was not overlooked. Many of the teachers lived within walking distance of the school. Some were parishoners of St George's Church. Many boys were choirboys.
A wall separated the boys' playground from the girls' and old log books refer to dire punishments for those boys who 'did go across the wall'. One day, I asked a boy what he was staring at across the wall. "THe Promised Land, sir." When the girls' school moved to Broadstairs, he inherited his promised land without its charming inhabitants!
There was excellent academic work done in the school. The boys also excelled at sport. Glancing through my copies of The Georgian, I remain amazed at the num ber of championships they won, notably in football and swimming. Mr Easterbrook, the Sports Master, was an eccentric character who possessed the remarkable gift for convincing boys that they could achieve anything if they put their minds to it.
The moment I treasure most arose out of a spate of thefts from the cloakroom. Someone was nipping in from Church Lane, stealing, then nipping out again. I gave the instructions to the prefects to question any stranger that they saw on the premises. Two burly 6-footers came to my study door. Between them stood a diminutive man dressed in a grubby raincoat. "They've got him!" I thought.
One prefect stated, disbelief pouring from each measured syllable, "We found this gentleman, sir, poking around in the cloakroom. He claims to be one of Her Majesty's Inspectors."
And he was.
Notes from the 1970s and 1980s
Mr Norman Morland holds a special place in the History of St George's, as the first Headteacher of the combined school. He was born in 1925 to Maximillian and Prudence Morland and grew up in Shepherds Bush London. He attended Latimer Upper School London and was in the Royal Marines for a short time. He obtained his degree in Modern Languages at Trinity Hall College Cambridge, which was where he met Margaret, his wife.
Initially, they lived in Fulham where their son Matthew was born, before moving to Loughton, Essex where their second son Tony was born. Initially Norman worked for the National Coal Board before becoming a teacher of Modern Languages at Westminster City School, London. He went on to become Head of Modern Languages there and also taught part time at a London Polytechnic. Moved to East Grinstead, he took up the position as Head of Upper school at Hazelwick School, Crawley, one of the first newly formed comprehensive schools in the country.
He later moved to Broadstairs to take up position of head of The Charles Dickens School. It was then that he was asked to take on the Headship of St George's school, tasked with the amalgamation of the Ramsgate Boys’ school with the newly built Broadstairs Girls’ school in one campus where he remained until his retirement at Easter 1988.
Outside of the school environment, Norman was a quiet, thoughtful and generous family man, enjoying all the pleasures that family life brought him. A regular church goer and active member where he found contentment and when needed, advice and reassurance in both family and work matters. Norman enjoyed a good period of retirement where he and Margaret enjoyed time together both locally and some cruise holidays, as well as enjoying time with their grandchildren . He passed away in November 2012.
These extracts come from A Celebration of 150 Years, edited by the former Headteacher, Mr Norman Morland.
"September 1973 saw the beginning of the development of the new combined school in Broadstairs. The excavations began for the first new building, known then as the ROSLA Block (Raising Of the School Leaving Age), which was to provide woodwork, metalwork and technical drawing rooms and a Sixth Form Common Room. It was erected like a huge Meccano set with concrete blocks slotted into a spider's web of steel girders. These architectural monstrosities were being erected all over the county and were known as SEAC buildings (South East Architects Consortium). It was method of using prefabricated sections to produce school buildings quickly to accommodate the extra numbers created by the raising of the school Leaving Age to 16 in 1974.
Meanwhile, endless discussions took place about the other buildings to come. There was at that time a building 'moratorium', which demanded that any new buildings put up for schols should fit with future plans for comprehensive education. Because of this, we ended up with a rather peculiar set of buildings, the biggest being the 'Home Economics Block'. It contained excellent provision for Home Economics, needlework, art and pottery, but it was designed for a 12 form entry 'school of the future' and was impossible to staff effectively.
The chaos seemed to go on and on! There were builders, dust, noise, mud and dirt everywhere! In July 1974 came government cuts in education, resulting in more changes. The planned music room, half the block which became the 'Maths Block', 4 classrooms, the new library and the staffroom had to wait until some future date. More changes... hutted classrooms appeared all over the place, the staff took the Sixth Form Common Room and the timetables changed termly, and sometimes even half-termly. Eventually there was a big burst of changes to the main block and then everything quietened down.
Even before we had taken over the last of the prefabricated buildings, a fire in the Ramsgate buildings made us change to a forest of 'mobile classrooms' so that the boys could come to Broadstairs and to discontinue using Ramsgate. Outdated though it was, it was a sad way to leave it - boarded up to deter the vandals and looters, who had already set about stripping and destroying it. The new gymnasium had still to be built and the Sports Hall did not eventually arrive until the 1990s! The Education Committee realised that the SEAC buildings would leave a legacy of very high maintenance, so Gym was built properly in brick [and is almost the only part of the school remaining in the 2010 buildings - it's still the gym, and weight rooms].
In November 1973, the first fire occurred at the new school buildings, which turned out to be Mr Morland's pipe burning through his car coat that he had hung on the door of a metal locker in the cloakroom. That was dealt with quickly by the fire brigade. Unfortunately, vandals broke into the new school shortly after the Ramsgate fire, and destroyed the changing rooms and corridor. The new school gym was left intact and only required some redecorating.
We had a full inspection in 1980. Greater importance was given to Houses rather than Year groups [something that stayed until the mid-2000s]. In 1982, the school was informed that the County Officer had refused to allow either A levels or O Levels to be sat in Thanet Sixth Forms unless they were Grammar Schools. Thanet had been chose as an experiment in 'rationalisation' while schools in the rest of the County escaped. Despite letters of protest, this huge blow caused the Sixth Form to close down in 1984."
Next it was the introduction of GCSEs in 1988, with the arrival of John Fletcher as Headteacher and beyond that many more changes were afoot.
"There is one self-evident characteristic of St George's - it thrives whatever difficulties it has to face."
Notes from the 1990s and 2000s
The next permanent Headteacher following the retirement of Norman Morland was John Fletcher. A proud Evertonian and Justice of the Peace, who joined St George's from King Ethelbert School.
Mr Fletcher retired in 1996 and was succeeded by the then Deputy Headteacher, Mr Keith Rumblo who had also joined the school from King Ethelbert. During his tenure, the school became a Business and Enterprise School in 2005. When the foot and mouth outbreak stopped concerts from taking place at Quex, Mr Rumblo offered St George's school fields as a venue, and the school was visited by bands such as Westlife, McFly, Busted and All Saints. Prior to Westlife playing in July 2004, he said:
"As far as the area is concerned, a lot of people feel that Thanet is very much a cultural desert. To have something along these lines, with famous people coming along, will be great for everyone."
After he retired, Mr Rumblo continued with his love of golf and Manchester United, as well as being Chair and President of Margate Rotary Club.
A number of trophies and prizes are presented each year, and many are named after staff who have taught at the school over many years. They include :
Armstrong Cup (Best GCSE Results)
St George’s Cup (Best GCSE Results)
The David Cotton Cup (For Best Effort in Year 7)
Keith Rumblo Award (for showing honour to the St George’s family & interest in the school community)
Croucher Cup (for character and Service to the School)
Chapman Cup (for character and Service to the School)
Dick Haworth Memorial Prize (For Excellence in Girls Physical Education)
Dick Haworth Memorial Prize (For Excellence in Boys Physical Education)
Always, Always, Always Award
Thanet Lions Club Award (For Social Awareness)
Maggie Harrington Achievement Award (for Key Stage 3 Science)
St George’s Old Boys Association Progress Prize (for progress in Reading)
St George’s Old Girls Association Progress Prize (for Greatest Progress at Key Stage 3)
The Outreach Progression Award from Canterbury Christ Church University (for Greatest Progress at Key Stage 4)
The Capita Award
Vigo Cup Sponsored by the Isle of Thanet Sunrise Rotary Club (For Outstanding Commitment to the St George’s Community)
|YEAR||VIGO CUP WINNER|
Tik Kwan Lau
Hayley King / Hayley Peall
Dylan Richards /Kiera Turner
Daisy Leigh Clowes
Head Boys and Girls
To get a complete list of our Head Boys and Girls is going to be a difficult, if not somewhat impossible task. However, with the use of old documents and social media, we want to see how far we can get!
|YEAR||HEAD BOY||HEAD GIRL|
|1961||Douglas Watson||Valerie Patterson|
|1969||Susan Reynolds, Lesley Theobald|
|1971||Linda File, Judith Hayes|
|1973||Graham Tongate||Sheila Knight|
|1974||Donald Parrott||Elisabeth Stanley|
|1975||Donald Parrott||Denise Harris|
|1976||Christopher Colledge||Susan Walters|
|1977||Graham Ralph, Paul Anselmi||Nicola Powe|
|1978||Derek Walley||Alison Greig|
|1979||Derek Oliver||Gillian Knott|
|1980||?Gregory Redwood||Wendy Cooper|
|1981||Nicholas Colyer||Lois Ford|
|1982||Simon Lane||Angela Sturgess|
|1983||Stuart Hattersley||Rebecca Paine|
|1984||Giles Vince||Helen Young|
|1985||Matthew Walters||Rebecca Bellingham|
|1986||Andrew Blyth||Jacqueline Waller|
|1987||Spencer Payne||Brenda Crosswell|
|1988||Mark Hewitt||Katharine Jones|
|1989||Scott Wimsett||Zoe Kingsman|
|1990||Neil Chapman||Christina Dianellou|
|1991||Benjamin Kiff||Jaqueline Cromack|
|1992||Benjamin Wealands||Emma Sharpe|
|1993||Peter Wedgwood||Janette Barsley|
|1994||Timothy Gunn||Jemima Locke|
|1995||Dale Spencer||Lisa Brand|
|1996||Nicolas Rutledge||Lisa Gammon|
|1997||Nathan Sandles||Katy Goodship|
|1998||Paul Meredith||Gemma Dixon|
|1999||Richard Faraday||Jenny Herbert|
|2000||Wesley Hammond||Laura Standen|
|2001||Daniel Buckley||Elizabeth Boxer|
|2002||Ray Dane||Hannah Scobie|
|2003||Mark Rampling||Claire Millbank|
|2004||Scott Mather||Kayleigh Burke|
|2005||Joseph Kimpton||Naomi Richardson|
|2006||Drayson Goldfinch||Joely Woodward|
|2007||Mitchell Avery||Georgia Boyce|
|2008||Jay Moore||Esther Richardson|
|2009||Niall Boyce||Elizabeth Quantrill|
|2010||Courtney Jones||Catherine Hankinson|
|2011||Kieran Newell||Lydia Baker|
|2012||David Petch||Karla Willson|
|2013||Samuel Watson||Ashleigh Longman|
|2014||Callum Noble||Sophie Jarvis|
|2015||Clark Correa||Nadine Kelly|
|2016||Stephen Swallow||Hope Andrea|
|2017||George Websper||Darina Borova|
|2018||Nicolas Carny||Mollie Lay|
|2019||Blake Whittaker||Grace Brackenborough|
|2020||Kylle McKeown, Arthur Mirams||Aimee Munroe, Summer Scholes|