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Loughborough Grammar School
Loughborough grammar school crest.png
Motto Vires Acquirit Eundo
(Latin: "We Gather Strength As We Go")
Established 1495
Type Independent
Religion Christian
President Prof. R. J. Mair
Headmaster Paul B. Fisher MA
Chaplain Rvd.Owen
Chairman of Governors H. M. Pearson
Founder Thomas Burton
Location Burton Walks
LE11 2DU
England England
Staff c.100 full-time
Students c.1200
Gender Boys
Ages 10 to 18
Houses Abney, Yates, Pulteney and Davys
Colours Navy and Red          
Coordinates: 52°45′55″N 1°12′02″W / 52.765398°N 1.200632°W / 52.765398; -1.200632

Loughborough Grammar School (commonly LGS) founded in 1495 by Thomas Burton, is a selective, fee-paying, independent Public school in Loughborough, Leicestershire, England. It is a day school for over 1100 pupils and a boarding school for nearly 100. All pupils are boys. It is one of three schools known as the Loughborough Endowed Schools, along with Loughborough High School and Fairfield Preparatory School. The Endowed Schools share a board of governors.



LGS was founded after Thomas Burton, a prosperous wool merchant from Loughborough, left money for priests to pray for his soul upon is death in 1495; these priests went on to found the school that would become LGS.

The school was founded in the Parish Church in the centre of Loughborough in 1495, but was moved by the trustees of the Burton Charity to its present location in 1852. A purpose-built site on Burton Walks became its permanent home, initially consisting of the main school building, loadgings and a gatehouse at the Leicester Road entrance. These buildings were Grade II Listed in the 1980s.[1]

The relocation of the Grammar School coincided with the foundation of the High School for girls.

The school celebrated its quincentenary in 1995, when it was visited by HM Queen Elizabeth II. During her visit the Queen opened the new English block, the "Queen's Building", which includes a drama studio.


Loughborough Grammar School's tower block

LGS is based on a multi-acre campus on the south side of Loughborough town centre; the three Endowed Schools are adjacent to one another, laid out along Burton Walks. The core of the campus is the quadrangle, on the eastern side of the Walks. Dating from 1850, Big School, consisting of the Victorian Gothic tower, gymnasium and hall are at the head of the quadrangle, nowadays accommodating the History department, Chapel and Sixth Form common room, and are the oldest buildings on the current site. The quadrangle is completed by School House (the senior boarding house), the Queen's Building (1994, English and Drama), the Barrow Building (c. 1910, Classics and Modern Languages), the Cope Building (2000, Modern Languages) on the north side and the Library and old laboratory buildings (now housing Computing and Religion and Philosophy) on the south side. Big School and School House are both grade II listed, as is the gatehouse[1]

On the western side of Burton Walks are located the Science building (Chemistry and Physics), Murray Building (Biology), Pullinger Building (Mathematics) as well as the Hodson Hall, where most school functions and assemblies are held, the Burton Hall, primarily a dining hall, and the Art and Design department, Sports Hall, swimming hall and the Combined Cadet Force's buildings. A number of houses on this side of the Walks are now owned by the School, including Buckland House, the administrative hub of the School, containing the Headmaster and Deputy Headmasters' offices as well as the general office and reprographics. Others include Red House, formerly used for music lessons but now largely occupied by the Business Studies and Economics departments, Friesland House and others, containing Network Services and the Bursary. Both the Headmaster of the Grammar School and the Headmistress of the High School traditionally reside in properties on the Walks.

The astroturf tennis and hockey pitches are not strictly part of the Grammar School, but are shared with the High School. The Music School (2006), is also another of these shared buildings, it includes a performance space as well as practice rooms and recording facilities.

In addition to the main campus, the School owns a 70-acre (280,000 m2) site at the nearby village of Quorn, consisting of sports facilities, primarily rugby, football and cricket pitches.

The school has repeatedly tried to get the public right of way along Burton Walks revoked, citing security concerns; this connects the council estate of Shelthorpe with Loughborough town centre.[2] To date these efforts have been unsuccessful.


Candidates sit an entrance examination to gain admission to the school, usually at the age of 10, so as to enter Year 7 at the age of 11. However, the middle school system that still prevails in North West Leicestershire led the School to introduce a smaller Year 6 intake for pupils leaving their primary schools after Year 5, as happens in a middle school system. There is also a 13+ exam, for those wishing to enter at Year 9, and a 16+ exam for boys wishing to enter at Sixth Form level.

In keeping with many other Independent Schools, the choice of subjects at the school tends to be more traditional, although recently Drama Studies and PE Courses in the Sixth Form have been offered.

Extracurricular activities


Combined Cadet Force

Loughborough Grammar School runs a large and successful Combined Cadet Force (CCF), comprising Army, Navy and RAF sections. Major events include the annual Remembrance Parade in Loughborough in November, and the Annual Review in May. In 2003, Lt Col George Beazley was awarded the MBE in recognition of his work with the CCF.[3] The CCF used to occupy a number of old Nissen-style huts, but these have been replaced with a purpose-built Cadet Force building, part sponsored by the MOD. This was opened in 2005.

Music and Drama

The Construction of a new Music School by the Endowed Schools in 2006 enabled a greater level of cooperation than had previously been possible. An excellent orchestra, choir and a number of swing/jazz bands are amongst the ensembles run at the Music School, and these perform regularly at school concerts and elsewhere. The Endowed Schools Big Band and Concert Band have competed nationally at the English Concert Band Festival, and these bands also tour abroad regularly.

High quality dramatic productions have become a signature of the Grammar School in recent years, and another area of cooperation between the Endowed Schools. The 182-seat Drama Studio, located within the Queen's Building, plays host to a number of plays every year. Recent productions have included Andrew Lloyd Webber's Jesus Christ Superstar and Eclipse. In addition to purely extracurricular productions, the English Department's teaching of A-level Theatre Studies produces further theatrical output; such as Brecht's The Resisitble Rise Of Arturo UI (2008) and other devised performances.

In March 2008 students from the LGS and the LHS joined together to put on a performance of Shakespeares A Midsummer Nights Dream a cast totaling over 30 students had practised since before Christmas and produced a 'fantastic' production that was sold out on all three nights which is was performed.


The major sports at the School are rugby, hockey, cricket, tennis, athletics, football and cross country. In 2007, the boys did very well, only losing one game out of 10 they topped the table and played some outstanding football. Boys in 1st-3rd year have a 60 minute PE lesson and a 90 minute 'games' session per week, with extra training for those representing their school or houses. Boys in 4th-5th year have a 90 minute 'games' session each week. The School competes in national competitions in these sports, and has a full structure of teams from U12 to U18 level. The senior rugby, cricket and hockey teams have all toured abroad in recent years, including a cricket tour to South Africa. Boys also partake in other sports at a lesser, often recreational, level or represent their houses. These include swimming, basketball, badminton, fencing, football, golf, sailing, table tennis and karting.

There has been a limited introduction of football in recent years. Originally, football was only played in lunch breaks and by members of the sixth form in 'games'. However, a 1st XI Football Team was formed in 1999 and football may soon filter down to lower years. This policy has not been without its detractors; many view rugby as a more 'gentlemanly' sport that is thoroughly enshrined in the school's ethos. However, soccer was once the traditional sport of the school: rugby football is a relatively modern innovation at Loughborough (as befits a sport only developed in the 1820s), and the reintroduction of soccer is far from radical, considering that it was identified as the official winter sport until the 1952 school prospectus (LGS archives). Football is however the most popular sport among the vast majority of boys as it is by far the most popular sport in the nation itself.


The school runs an active Duke of Edinburgh's Award scheme, a Scout Troop and biannual expeditions, which have visited areas such as the High Atlas Mountains of Morocco, the Himalayas and Greenland. A number of clubs and societies run regularly, including a Debating Society and a school magazine, entitled VOX. The school also plays Bridge to an extremely high level, and has produced numerous players who have represented the UK in international competitions.

The school engages in regular charity fund-raising events, including non-uniform days and concerts.[4]

House System

The school operates a house system; every boy is placed in one of four houses: Abney (Green, after Sir Thomas Abney), Yates (Yellow, after William Yates), Pulteney (Purple, after Richard Pulteney) and Davys (Sky blue, after George Davys) and boys below the Upper Sixth have a small line in one of these colours on their school tie, between larger stripes for the school's red and navy colours. The houses are named after alumni. The house system provides internal competition in a number of sporting disciplines as well as quiz, chess, bridge and music competitions, with a points system (40 for winning an event down to 10 for finishing fourth) calculating the eventual winner of the Stamper Cup. The Eagle trophy is awarded to the house that wins the most points in non-sporting house competitions.


The School has an old boys' association, the Old Loughburians Association (OLA). Notable Old Loughburians include:


  • In 2007, the Deputy Head of Sixth Form, Robert Dockerill, was convicted on two counts of making indecent images of a child and five of possessing indecent images of a child.[6]
  • On 24 March 2006, the school hosted BBC Radio 4's Any Questions.[7]
  • The school's former Campus Network Manager, Mark McMorran, pioneered the use of thumbprint sensors to register students' attendance.[8]
  • On 15 March 2007, the Loughborough High School for Girls hosted Schools Question Time, in association with the BBC and BT.
  • World War II flying ace Johnnie Johnson was caught swimming in the open air pool with a young lady and expelled. It was only after his World War II success that the school then asked him to become involved with the establishment again.

Further reading

  • History of Loughborough Endowed Schools by Alfred White, Loughborough Grammar School, Loughborough, 1969 ISBN 0950074004
  • Five Hundred Years Enduring: A History of Loughborough Grammar School, by Nigel Watson, James & James, London, 2000, pp. 144, E28.00, ISBN 0-907-383-432.


External links


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