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Welcome to the

St. Mary's
St Nicholas Schools page


Full list of schools  

(Opening comments from Ruislip, Northwood & Eastcote Local History Society)


Neither Manor, Bourne nor Northwood schools were deemed to be grammar schools and as early as 1936 land was acquired by the Middlesex County Council between Joel Street and Wiltshire Lane for an elementary and a grammar school. As the war intervened it was 1951 before plans for the new grammar school went ahead.

In a letter of March 1953, the Minister of Education gave her consent to the project to build the grammar school, which was estimated to cost £172,875, and in May of that year the order to begin work was sent to the firm of Holland, Hannen and Cubitts.

In September 1954, some 60 boys began their grammar school course at the Bourne Secondary Modern School, with a view to their joining the new School in 1955.

The headmaster and nine masters were appointed in February 1955, and the school opened in September with three first forms and two second forms numbering about 160 pupils.

After construction of the school had started, it was decided to build a girls' grammar school on the same site, and as much of the land in Ruislip had once belonged to King's College Cambridge, named in Letters Patent of 1443 "the College of Blessed Mary and St. Nicholas of Cambridge" Mr. John Miles, formerly headmaster of Bishopshalt School, and the then Chairman of the N.W. Middlesex Divisional Executive Committee wrote to the Provost of the College suggesting that it would be singularly appropriate to name the two new grammar schools, St. Nicholas' Grammar School for Boys St. Mary's Grammar School for Girls.

The College approved the proposal, stating "we shall be very pleased to see the long connection with Ruislip perpetuated in this way."

St. Nicholas' Grammar School for boys opened in September 1955, and the ceremonial opening by County Alderman S. Graham Rowlandson MBE JP took place on 30th April 1956. There were three first forms, two second forms and nine staff, with the intention of expanding to 500 boys maximum.

St. Mary's School opened on the Wiltshire Lane site on 10th September 1957 with 131 girls of 11 plus ,in four forms. The pupils came from Northwood, Ruislip, Eastcote, South Ruislip and Uxbridge, and even a few from Harrow and Wembley. There were six staff. The official opening took place on 27th March 1958, and the Principal of Newnham College Cambridge, Miss R. L. Cohen performed the ceremony.

The school was intended to accommodate 540 girls in its three main blocks. The first and only headmistress was Miss N. Hornsby.

In 1977 all secondary schools in the Borough became comprehensive, so the two schools amalgamated to form Haydon School, which took its name from the local area of Eastcote. An earlier proposal to call the combined schools King's College school, was considered elitist.

The names of the houses as used by St. Nicholas7 School were kept by Haydon School, and perpetuate the link with the ancient history of the site.

They are:-

Abbots, and Bec. after the Abbots of Bec who were given the Manor of Ruislip after the Norman Conquest.

King's. after the College of Our Blessed Lady and St. Nicholas at Cambridge, founded by Henry VI and later known as King's College, lords of the manor of Ruislip.

Kevere. after a 13th century tenant of the Abbots of Bec, who gave his name to Kewferry Road in the area.

In 1980 Miss Hornsby was succeeded by Mr. David Dobson as Head of the new Haydon Comprehensive School. The school currently has 1102 pupils and 67 staff (1990).

Now, why don't you pop in to school by clicking on the button below to see if any of your old friends are in, if they are not they are down as the bus stop near The Ship. Or maybe they are looking for you, so tell them you are in school.


See the old St Mary's School Message Board with hundreds of messages from former pupils - but posting has now stopped and for new posts/stories/memories etc.

Go to the school facebook page

Ruislip local schools index page



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