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Norwich School in Norwichmarker, Norfolk, Englandmarker, previously King Edward VI’s Grammar School, is one of the oldest schools in the world, with a traceable history as far back as 1096.

Today the school is an independent, co-educational. fee-paying school, with one of the best academic records in Norfolk, with many of its leavers heading to top universities. In 2006, 2007 and 2008 the Daily Telegraph ranked Norwich School's A-Level results as 74th, 55th and 80th for Independent Schools. In each case, Norwich School was the highest ranked school from Norfolk or Suffolk.

The school has a long association with the Cathedral Churchmarker, and still uses the Cathedral for morning assemblies.

In 2007 it was announced that girls were to be admitted for the first time below the Sixth Form, starting in September 2008 when 47 girls were admitted at ages 7, 8, 11 and 13. There will be girls in every year group by September 2010.

Ethos and Aims

The School's website states the following:

EthosLearning and scholarship are at the heart of all that happens at Norwich School. Christian principles - notably love and compassion for one another - underpin our activities and relationships.

AimsNorwich School is committed to:

developing independent thinkers and knowledgeable young people who have a love for learning that will last beyond school;

providing a rich, varied and broad education that develops the diverse talents of the pupils;

encouraging ambition and confidence allied to coutesy and graciousness;

producing compassionate young people who will actively make the world a better place;

and enriching physical health and spititual awareness.


The history of the school is closely tied in with that of the cathedralmarker. In 1096 Bishop Herbert de Losinga established a Benedictine Priory at Norwich and, shortly afterwards, opened an Episcopal Grammar School.

The original Bishop’s Palace, now part of a Senior School classroom block, is built around 1100.

Vincent of Scarning appears in a document, dated around 1240, as Master of the Episcopal School – the first in an unbroken and documented line of headmasters that continues to the present day. Around 1285 sees the first record of the Almonry School – a second school within close proximity of the Cathedral.

The Chantry chapel of St John the Evangelist (now the School Chapel) was founded by Bishop John Salmon in 1316. In 1421 a further Chantry Chapel, probably associated with Agincourt veterans, was founded in the Chapel Crypt by Henry V.

The Episcopal School and the Almonry School amalgamated around 1516, and in 1540 King Henry VIII’s Grammar School was established, on the Cathedral foundation. The School was refounded in 1547 as King Edward VI’s Grammar School under the Great Hospital Charter; separating it from the Cathedral foundation and placing it under the control of the Mayor and Aldermen of Norwichmarker.

The School moved into its current buildings – School House and the School Chapel (the former College and Chantry of St John the Evangelist, which has been dissolved in 1547) - in 1551.

During 1768, Horatio Nelson and his older brother, William, were sent to King Edward VI’s Grammar School, boarding there during term time. The boarding houses closed during the 1980s.

Girls were allowed to join the Sixth Form at the school from 1994. The main school remained open to boys only until 2008, when girls were admitted below Sixth Form level. Norwich School was the last single sex boys' school in the county.


The pastoral care of the Senior School is organised by Houses. Pupils are allocated to a House upon joining the school, and stay with that house as they move up through the year groups.

The Housemasters are managed by the Principal Deputy Head, who is accountable to the Head Master for the day-to-day pastoral care and discipline of the school, as well as for much of the rest of the school's non-academic activity.

The day-to-day care of the pupils is in the hands of the Tutors. Each year group within a House is run by a Tutor; sixth form groups, which are larger, have two Tutors. For example, the pupils in Repton House who are in the Lower Five year are together in one group, "Lower Five Repton", looked after by one Tutor, who is manged by the Repton Housemaster. The Tutor sees everyone in the Tutor group daily, for registration, and weekly, for a longer tutor period. The Tutor monitors the pupil's academic progress, general welfare, extra-curricular involvement, and so on, and is the first point of contact for most matters of concern or enquiry.

In the first year of the Senior School, Lower Four, pupils are tutored in a Form, which is also their teaching set for most subjects. Lower Four pupils are also attached to a House, and join the rest of their House for special events like the Music Competition.

During the current period of school expansion through co-education, the Senior Mistress is leading a team of Tutors for Girls.


From 11 – 16

The traditional array of subjects is taught but pupils have a full experience of the creative arts, in particular drama, music and design. They encounter many languages including Hebrew and Japanese as well as being taught philosophy and skills relating to thinking, relaxation and study. There are practical elements where learning takes place outdoors – to learn, for example, about ecology and food production by experience on school land. Site visits to the North Norfolk coast and other areas of the county are programmed into the year so that different academic subjects such as Art, Biology, Geography and History can combine resources on project work. The aim is to aid learning through varied experiences and stimuli and to excite the pupils about the learning process.

The Sixth Form

Almost all Sixth Form pupils go to university upon leaving Norwich School. There is a long track record of success in large numbers gaining entrance to Oxfordmarker, Cambridgemarker and the other top academic institutions. In equipping boys and girls for this next stage of their career, care is taken to ensure that they have impressive academic credentials, the ability to work independently and with enthusiasm, and the capacity to lead full and varied lives. All are encouraged to excel in their A level studies and to be committed to sporting, cultural and extracurricular activity.

There is a significant intake of new pupils into the Sixth Form, the majority of whom are girls. Co-education at this age group is firmly established at Norwich School and girls are fully integrated into school life, many of them taking on positions of responsibility and a high profile in the academic and extracurricular life of the School. Girls’ induction and pastoral care is given particular importance; the Tutor for Girls has a specific brief to work with the Director of Sixth Form and Housemasters to ensure that each girl is well looked after.

Lower School

The Lower School is the base for Norwich School pupils between the ages of seven and eleven. There are currently 170 pupils in the Lower School. The vast majority of pupils from the Lower School progress to the Senior School at age eleven and the curriculum is designed to prepare the pupils effectively for the demands of the next stage of their Norwich School education. There are close links between the Lower and Senior Schools. The Master of the Lower School attends meetings of the Norwich School Board of Governors each term and meets regularly with members of the Senior School management team. In total, there are 10 full-time and 1 part-time members of the teaching staff–with a good mix of male and female staff.

Admission to the School

For September 2007 entry to the Lower School is from the age of 7 and 8, with lesser numbers at the ages of 9 and 10. Entry to the Senior School is at 11 and 12 and a small number at 13 and 14. Applicants can enter the school via either the Common Entrance examination or the school entry papers. In 2008 the school made the decision to start admitting girls from the age or 11, rather than the age of 16, as was previously the case.


The Senior School is organised by the House system. On entry to the school pupils are assigned to a House, remaining a member of that House as they progress through the year-groups. The list of Houses can be seen in the menu below.

House Housemaster
Brooke G.M. Downes (BA)
Coke G.A. Hanlon (BSc)
Nelson R.H. Bedford-Payne (BA)
Parker F.L. Ellington (BA)
Repton J.C. Fisher (BSc)
School I.M. Grisewood (BA)
Valpy D.P. Bateman (BA)
Seagrim A. Curtis (BA)
From September 2009 Norwich School opened an eighth House, named Seagrim; the Housemaster is Mr. Andrew Curtis. It was populated by moving pupils (at their own discretion) from their current Houses as well as by new pupils joining the school in 2009. Seagrim's house colour is purple, and their symbol is 'E', the second letter of the house name. Seagrim is named after two ex-pupils, brothers Lt Col Derek Seagrim VC and Major Hugh Seagrim GC who both fought in WWII and between them gained honourable mention by the Government as well as the Victoria Cross and the George Cross.

School terms

The school's year is divided into three terms: Michaelmas (early September to mid December), Lent (early January to the Easter holiday) and Trinity (the Easter holiday to early July). In the middle of each term there is a week-long half-term holiday. The academic year thus begins with the Michaelmas term and ends with the Trinity term.

School sports

The school owns sports grounds for cricket, rugby, hockey, and soccer, and a gymnasium. It has boat-houses for rowing and sailing on the River Wensummarker and at Wroxham Broadmarker respectively.

With rowing becoming an increasingly popular sport, more and more pupils are joining each year. The school has had many successes over the last year, including silver medals for two crews at National Schools Regatta, and another silver medal at the Junior Inter-Regional Regatta. The accomplishment of the boatclub is reflected in the fact that there is currently fundraising underway for a new multimillion pound boathouse being built next to the original boathouse.

The major games are rugby, cricket and football for boys and hockey, netball and rounders for girls. Other sports offered include: swimming, netball, cross-country running, fencing, self-defence, hockey, shooting and badminton.

Extracurricular activities

There are School Orchestras, bands, choirs, and groups. The school has a Debating Society, Politics Forum and several academic departments also offer clubs. There are also a wide range of clubs that reflect the interests of the pupils at the school.

The Senior Play traditionally is performed in the Maddermarket Theatre, with other productions taking place in the Puppet Theatremarker, the Lower School and the Cathedral.

There are also a number of overseas visits, with the Modern Languages Department running exchanges to Francemarker, Germanymarker and Liechtensteinmarker. Cultural, sporting and adventurous trips have also been undertaken to Austriamarker, Canadamarker, Ecuadormarker, Egyptmarker, Greecemarker, Hollandmarker, Icelandmarker, Indiamarker, Israelmarker, Russiamarker and Turkeymarker. The school also offers the Duke of Edinburgh Award.

8th Norwich Sea Scouts

The 8th Norwich Sea Scout Group and the associated Octavi Explorer Scout Unit are sponsored by Norwich School and membership is restricted to members of the School. The Group is one of about a hundred Sea Scout groups recognised by the Royal Navy.


Scholarships are available, giving a reduction in school fees. The maximum value of a means-tested Scholarship is the entirety of the school's fees. Music scholarships, academic scholarships and other awards are also available.

All choristers are given assistance with school fees from the Norwich Cathedral Choir Endowment Fund.


For the Academic Year 2008/09:


Senior School

£10,518 (per annum)

£3,506 (per term)

Lower School

£9,882 (per annum)

£3,294 (per term)

The School also charges fees for lunches and entries for public examinations.

Governing body

Council of Management

GHC Copeman CBE DL (Chairman) *

Professor Christopher Andrew MA, University of Cambridge

NP Blair, Worshipful Company of Dyers

CH Bradley Watson BSc MRICS *

JR Chambers FCA, Worshipful Company of Dyers

NJ Fischl MA

Mrs AM Fry MA

EJH Gould MA *

TJ Gould MA (Vice Chairman) *

Mrs AJC Green BSc

The Reverend Canon JM Haselock BA BPhil MA, Dean and Chapter

Professor KJ Heywood BSc PhD, University of East Anglia

AD Jeakings FCMA *

A Knowles MDes (RCA)

RA Leuchars BSc, Worshipful Company of Dyers

Mrs E McLoughlin BArch RIBA

PN Mirfield BCL MA BA, University of Oxford

Mrs MCG Phillips BA

The Very Reverend GCM Smith BA, Dean and Chapter

PJE Smith MA FIA *

EP Witton ACIB

Miss T Yates BA

List of Old Norvicensians

The following is a list of notable Old Norvicensians, former pupils of Norwich School, Norfolk, England.




George Borrow in an 1851 engraving.



Religious leaders


Notable Masters


1. Guardian Unlimited 2006 GCSE and A-level results,,1985499,00.html

2. Daily Telegraph A-level results table



5. Rawcliffe, Wilson and Clark, 'Norwich Since 1555', International Publishing Group, 2004, p308.,M1


See also

External links

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