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between the appointment of the new Head Master and the
removal of the school to its present home on Kingsland.
Almost every year that passed brought with it in the form
of classical distinctions gained by Shrewsbury men at Oxford

2 B 369


and Cambridge additional evidence that the high standard of
classical scholarship which the school had attained under
Butler and Kennedy was not likely to deteriorate under their
successor. Of the Shrewsbury men who went up to Cam-
bridge between 1867 and 1882 twenty-two gained a first class
in the Classical Tripos, two of whom were Senior Classics,
and three were Chancellor's Medallists. During these same
fifteen years Shrewsbury carried off ten of the principal
university scholarships, one Bell scholarship, three Powis
Medals, eighteen Browne Medals, and nine Person Prizes.
In addition to these classical distinctions Shrewsbury men
obtained two first classes in the Law Tripos, one in the
Theological Tripos, and one in the Natural Sciences Tripos,
while two of their number were awarded the Chancellor's
Medal for an English poem, and another won the Maitland
Prize for an English essay. Although Shrewsbury successes
have always been less marked at Oxford than at Cambridge,
they included at the former university during the fifteen years
in question three university scholarships, twelve first classes
in Classical Moderations, and four in the final Classical School,
one first class in modern history, and the Chancellor's Prize
for Latin verse. Three years elapsed after the passing of the
Public School Act of 1868 before the members of the new
Governing Body of Shrewsbury School, for the constitution
of which provision was made in the Act, were duly elected
by the persons or the corporate bodies to whom this duty
was entrusted.

The following tables give the names of the Governors
originally elected in 1871, as well as of those who were in
office in January, 1 898 :


1871. NOMINATORS. 1898.

Rev.W.H.Bateson,D.D., \ ( Rev. Charles Taylor,D.D.,

Master of St. John's ! Ex-qfficio . . . < Master of St. John's
College, Cambridge . J ' College, Cambridge.

John Loxdale, Esq. . ) The Mayor and Corpora- Gee Butler
Henry Keate, Esq. . tion of Shrewsbury .

\ The Lord Lieutenant of / Stanley Leighton, Esq.,
John Bather, Esq. . f Shropshire ... I M.P.


The Right Rev. James
Fraser, D. D. , Lord
Bishop of Manchester

Rev. B. H. Kennedy,
D.D., Regius Professor
of Greek .

Sir James Paget, Bart.,

The Right Hon. George
Osborne Morgan, M.P.

Rev. James Cartmell,
D. D. , Master of Christ's
College, Cambridge .

Rev. Benjamin Jowett,
M.A., Master of Balliol
College, and Regius
Professor of Greek

J. T. Hibbert, Esq., M.P.

Rev. W. G. Humphry,

B.D. .


The Hebdomadal Council
of the University of

The Council of the Senate
of the University of
Cambridge .

) The President and Fellows
J of the Royal Society .
) The Lord Chief Justice
) of England

The Head Master and

Assistant Masters of the


Co-opted by the Govern-
ing Body

J. E. L. Shad well, Esq.,
M.A., formerly Student
of Christ Church.

Edwin Charles Clark,
Esq., M.A., LL. D.,

Regius Professor of
Civil Law.

P. H. Pye Smith, Esq.,
M.D., F.R.S.

Rev. J.G.Lonsdale, M.A.,

Canon of Lichfield.
Rev. J. F. Bright, D.D.,

Master of University

College, Oxford.
The Right Hon. Sir J.

T. Hibbert, K.C.B.
The Right Hon. Lord

Thring, K.C.B.
The Very Rev. Francis

Paget, D.D., Dean of

Christ Church.

One of the first questions which the new Governing Body
had to decide was whether it was practicable and advisable to
acquire additional property in the neighbourhood of the site
which the school had occupied for more than three hundred
years, and to provide there that increased and improved
accommodation which in the opinion of her Majesty's Com-
missioners was so greatly needed, or whether it would be
better to use the power given by the Public School Act of
1868 to remove the school to some suitable site not exceeding
three miles in distance, measured in a straight line from the
market place of Shrewsbury.

The municipal authorities and many residents in the town,
besides a large number of Old Salopians, were from the first
strongly opposed to the idea of any change of site. The
objections raised by Old Salopians to the removal of the
school were founded, of course, on a sentimental attachment
to their old haunts, while the townsmen not unnaturally
feared that if the school - buildings were moved into the
country it would become difficult and perhaps impossible
for their sons to attend school as day boys. But to the


Governing Body the great expense which would have neces-
sarily attended the purchase of sufficient land for their
purpose in the neighbourhood of the old school -buildings,
the impossibility of providing suitable playgrounds within
reasonable distance, and the manifest objections which could
not but be felt by all who knew anything of school life
to the retention of the boarding-houses within the town
at all, if Shrewsbury were again to hold its own numerically
among the great schools of England, seemed decisive argu-
ments in favour of removal. The site originally selected for
the erection of the new school-buildings was at Coton Hill,
and there is no doubt that this choice offered many advan-
tages. The daily life of the boys would still be passed amid
scenes which had been familiar to Shrewsbury scholars from
the time of the foundation of the school the boarding-
houses would be quite outside the town and only accessible
from it by one road, and yet the journey which day boys
would have to make to school for each lesson would hardly
be lengthened by ten minutes. But as soon as the intentions
of the Governing Body became publicly known an energetic
opposition was set on foot, which was carried on mainly
through the instrumentality of public meetings, pamphlets,
and newspaper articles. A memorial on the subject was also
signed by no less than 600 Old Salopians, and was presented
to the Governing Body in December, 1873, by the Rt. Hon.
H. C. Raikes. A similar address, in opposition to the pro-
posed removal, emanating from a meeting of townsmen, held
in the previous October under the presidency of the Mayor,
was also presented at the same time by the Earl of Powis.

One plausible objection to the Coton Hill site was urged
by the townsmen of Shrewsbury. They represented that in
time of floods Coton Hill would practically be isolated, so
far as day boys were concerned. Now such a state of
things, though by no means common, did in former days
sometimes exist in Shrewsbury, and happily the Governing
Body was ultimately able to procure a site against which this
objection could not be urged, and so excellent in every respect
that much of the town opposition gradually subsided.


On the Hereford side of the Severn, immediatety opposite
to the beautiful grounds known as "the Quarry," where
Shrewsbury boys used to act their annual Whitsuntide Play
in Ashton's days, there is a considerable expanse of table-
land known as Kingsland, some of which formerly belonged
to private owners, though the greater part was the property
either of the Corporation or of the united parishes of Shrews-
bury. Twenty-seven acres of this land were purchased by
the Governing Body in the summer of 1875, and upon this
singularly beautiful site the present school -buildings were
ultimately erected. But before the arrangements for the
purchase of Kingsland could be carried out it was necessary
to obtain the abolition of the ancient show, 1 which had been
held there every year for more than three centuries. In-
teresting as this curious old pageant was to antiquarians as
an illustration of the influence and importance of the old
trading companies of Shrewsbury, it had been for many
years an excuse for dissipation and a fertile source of trouble

1 The Shrewsbury Show undoubtedly took its origin from the religious observ-
ance of the Feast of Corpus Christi by the Trade Companies of Shrewsbury. It
was for many years the custom on that day for all the incorporated companies,
bearing their various colours and devices, to accompany the Bailiffs, Aldermen,
and Council, in solemn procession, to Weeping Cross, a place about two miles
distant from the town. After duly bewailing their sins at Weeping Cross the
members of the companies reformed their procession, and the whole party
returned to St. Chad's Church, where High Mass was celebrated. Three days
in the following week were always dedicated by the companies to recreation.
After the Reformation, when the festival of Corpus Christi ceased to be observed,
the old procession was kept up at the same season of the year, although it no
longer possessed any religious signification. About 1591 it became the custom
for the procession to go to Kingsland, where a small plot of land was allotted to
each company. These plots were enclosed by a hedge and were called arbours,
and most of them were provided with a covered building of wood. In the course
of the seventeenth century buildings of a more substantial character were erected
by some of the companies. The Shoemakers' Arbour, which was the largest,
was put up in 1679. In modern days the procession consisted in part of men and
women on cars, or on horseback, dressed up to represent Henry VIII., Queen
Elizabeth, Bishop Blasius, St. Catharine, St. Crispin, St. Crispianus, Rubens the
painter, Vulcan, and various other characters, historical or mythical, who, for one
reason or another, were regarded as figurative of the various trades. It used to
be a great delight to the boys to seat themselves on the wall of School Gardens as
the procession was passing down Castle Gates and fire at the stately personages as
they went by with pea-shooters, an amusement that generally earned for them a
liberal allowance of detentions.


and mischief, and most of the respectable inhabitants of the
town gladly welcomed the day when an order in Council
was issued which put a final end to the show.

Some years elapsed after the purchase of the property
before suitable boarding-houses and class-rooms could be
provided and other necessary arrangements made for the
accommodation of the masters and boys on Kingsland,
and it was not till July 28th, 1882, that the new school-
buildings were formally opened. Old Salopians mustered
in great numbers for the opening ceremonies.

The proceedings commenced with the celebration of Holy
Communion in St. Mary's Church at 8 a.m., followed by
morning service at 11.30, with a sermon from the Bishop
of Manchester. The offertory at this service, which was
devoted to the fund for building a school chapel on Kings-
land, amounted to 246. Shortly afterwards there was a
general move to the Corn Exchange, where guests, masters,
and boys were entertained at luncheon by the Governing
Body to the number of 500. The opening ceremony took
place in a large tent which had been put up on Kingsland
for the purpose, and which had a raised platform at one
end for the accommodation of the Governing Body and the
principal guests. The chair was taken by the Head Master,
and the school -buildings were formally declared open by
Lord Cranbrook in a most interesting speech, which con-
sisted chiefly of reminiscences of his school life. After this
the prizes were given away, and other speeches followed.
Among the speakers were the Bishops of Lichfield, Hereford,
Manchester, and Bedford, Lord Chief Justice May, Sir James
Paget, Lord Powis, Professor E. C. Clark, the High Sheriff of
Shropshire, and the Deputy-Mayor of Shrewsbury. In the
evening the day's festivities were brought to a close by the
annual school concert, which took place as usual in the
Music Hall. Two years later the school chapel was com-
pleted and ready for use.

It has been already mentioned that in December, 1865, a
Committee was appointed with the view of erecting a new
chapel as a memorial of Dr. Kennedy's head-mastership. A




sum of 3000 was raised for the purpose, but in consequence
of the declared intention of the Governing Body to remove
the school from its old site the project necessarily remained
in abeyance till 1878. In that year Dr. Bateson, who was one
of the trustees of the fund, as well as the Chairman of the
Governing Body, called a meeting of the Committee, at which
it was resolved that the whole sum subscribed for the new
chapel should be placed at the disposal of the Governing
Body on condition of its being applied to the erection of
some distinctive portion, such as the chancel or an apse, of
the new chapel which it was proposed to build on Kings-
land, as a memorial of Dr. Kennedy's head-mastership.

This chapel was ultimately completed and dedicated in
1883. It was built from the designs of Mr. A. W. Blomfield, 1
and undoubtedly possesses considerable architectural merit.
It is capable of accommodating upwards of 500 persons.
The memorial part of it consists of the chancel, chancel
arch, and north and south transepts, and on the step lead-
ing from the nave to the chancel a brass plate has been
placed, with an inscription recording the fact that the eastern
portions of the chapel were erected to commemorate the
respect and affection entertained for Dr. Kennedy by his
school - fellows, his colleagues, his pupils, and his friends.
The whole cost of the chapel, including the Kennedy
memorial, amounted to between 8000 and ^"9000, and nearly
the whole of this sum was contributed by Old Salopians.

During the last few years several of the windows have
been filled with excellent stained glass, most of which is
from the designs of Mr. Kempe. Three of these windows
on the southern side of the nave are dedicated respectively
to the memory of Bishop Fraser, Archdeacon T. B. Lloyd,
late Chairman of the Governing Body, and Mr. T. A. Bentley,
French master for more than fifty years. The western
window commemorates the Rev. John Rigg, B.D., who was
second master from 1861 to 1872. In the south transept
four small stained-glass windows have been placed in
memory of boys who have died at school. Brass plates

1 Now Sir Arthur Blomfield.


beneath record their names and the dates of their birth and
death. There is also a memorial window to a boy who died
at school on the north side of the chancel. The east window
and the other windows in the chancel, as well as those on
the south side of the nave, are by Mr. Kempe. The re-
mainder of the stained glass is the work of Burlison and
Grills. The walls beneath the windows on both sides of
the nave have been recently covered with oak panelling of
singularly beautiful design, for which the school is also in-
debted to Mr. Kempe's artistic skill. One effect of this
recent improvement has been to bring into somewhat dis-
agreeable contrast the boys' seats in the nave, which are of
pitchpine ; but this incongruity will, it is to be hoped, speedily
be remedied.

Until the new chapel was completed the boarders con-
tinued to attend service on Sundays at St. Mary's Church.
On January 27th, 1884, they assembled there for the last
time, when a farewell sermon was preached by the Vicar,
the Rev. T. B. Lloyd, from the text, " For my brethren and
companions' sake I will now say ' peace be within thee.' "
The first sermon in the new chapel was preached by Bishop
Walsham How.

At the time the Kingsland property was acquired by the
Governing Body there stood on the brow of the hill, facing
the quarry, a large building, originally erected in 1765, at a
cost of more than 1 2,000, as a "Foundling Hospital" in
connection with the well-known institution in London. The
hospital was closed in 1774 for want of sufficient funds for
its support, and the building was used for a time during the
American War for the confinement of Dutch prisoners. In
1784 it was purchased by the united parishes of Shrewsbury
for the shelter of the poor, and for this purpose it was used
under the name of " the house of industry " until the work-
house was built at Cross Houses. After much consideration,
and a favourable report from Mr. A. W. Blomfield as to the
stability of the building and the excellence of the materials
of which it was constructed, it was determined to remodel
the interior, so as to make it available for general school



purposes. The chief room in the building, as it is now
arranged, is about 120 feet long. It is divided into three
parts by movable partitions, the largest of which is known
popularly in the school as "Top Schools," and is used for
the same purposes of "preparation" as "Top Schools" 1 was
in former times in the old school -buildings. Besides an
ample supply of class-rooms, in which are included four
rooms set apart for the study of natural science and a school
for drawing, the central school - building contains a gym-
nasium, a common-room for day boys, four sets of rooms for
assistant masters, and two libraries, one of which is devoted
to the valuable books which used to be kept in the old
school library. The portraits of Edward VI., Sir Philip
Sidney, Leonard Hotchkis, and others, which formerly hung
on the library walls, have been placed in the Head Master's

The chief entrance of the school-building opens into a
fairly spacious hall, on the walls of which, as well as on
those of the broad stone staircase which leads upwards from
the hall to the class-rooms, the old honour-boards have been
fixed. There are staircases also at both ends of the building ;
by that at the west end access is obtained to the masters' apart-
ments. All the class-rooms are warmed by hot water. As
at present arranged the roof consists of a lead flat, which is
railed in and surmounted in the centre by a large zinc-covered
cupola. Fine views can be obtained from here of the triple
summit of the Breidden, of the Stiperstones, Caer Caradoc,
the Long Mynd, the lion-like form of Pontesbury Hill,
Grinshill, Hawkestone, Haughmond Hill, and the Wrekin
on the one side, and of the Severn, the Quarry, and the
greater part of the town of Shrewsbury on the other. The
old red brickwork of the "Foundling Hospital" has been
cleaned and repointed, and string courses and window
dressings have been introduced, and the general appearance
of what is now the chief school-building is fairly imposing.

1 Two other rooms are also used for "preparation" in the evening. The
institution itself, though popularly known as "Top Schools," has always had
besides the more dignified appellation of "Reading-room."


Mr. Blomfield was also the architect of the Head Master's
house, which was the only boarding-house built at the cost
of the Governing Body. It has accommodation for about
sixty-six boys, and harmonises fairly well, architecturally
speaking, with the central school-building. Other boarding-
houses were, however, built at the same time on ground
included within the school property by two of the assistant
masters, the Rev. G. T. Hall and the Rev. C. J. S. Churchill,
of both of which Mr. William White, F.S.A., was the architect.
According to existing regulations the number of boarders
which an assistant master is allowed to take is limited to
forty-two, and two of that number, it is provided, must
always be the holders of house scholarships worth 30 a
year. No limitation is put by statute. or regulation on the
number of the Head Master's boarders. Since 1882 several
other houses have been built or rented by assistant masters
outside the school gates in which boarders are now received.
The largest of these, which belongs to Mr. E. B. Moser, is
built, like Mr. Hall's and Mr. Churchill's houses, from the
designs of Mr. William White. All three houses are admir-
ably adapted for their purpose as regards their interior arrange-
ments. Externally, also, they present features of considerable
architectural merit. Mr. A. F. Chance, Mr. F. E. Bennett,
Mr. W. D. Haydon, and Mr. C. J. Baker are the other masters
who take boarders. It is provided by the regulations of
the Governing Body that no boy shall attend the school
as a boarder unless he board with one of the schoolmasters ;
or, as a day boy, unless he reside with his parents or
guardians, or with someone who has received a licence from
the Governing Body to take boys to lodge and board in
his house. An ample supply of water for general school
purposes is procured from a reservoir in the school-buildings,
into which the water is forced by means of a small engine.
The source of this supply is a well near the Head Master's
house. The Kingsland property has also been connected
by pipes with the old conduit spring, and the excellent water
which comes from this source is available for all residents.
A school shop was started soon after the removal to the


present site, and has, up to this time, been a great financial
success. It is managed by a committee of boys, on which
every boarding-house is represented, with a master for
chairman. The cricket pavilion adjoins the shop. It has
been recently enlarged, and boards have been placed on
the walls of the principal room recording the names of the
boys in the school cricket and football elevens for each year
from 1882. An excellent swimming-bath has been presented
to the school by the Head Master. It is seventy feet long
by twenty-five in breadth, and varies in depth from three
feet and a half to six feet and a half. Almost adjoining
the bath a carpenter's shop has been erected, which is
supplied with two lathes and all the necessary apparatus
for instruction in the work of the carpenter, the joiner, and
the turner. The Sanatorium is situated about a quarter of
a mile from the boarding-houses. Allusion has already been
made to some of the ordinances framed by the Governing
Body for the regulation of school affairs, by which previous
ordinances have been in some degree modified ; but it will
be well to state briefly some of the chief changes that have
been made. The new ordinances consist partly of statutes
and partly of regulations. By one of the new statutes all
masters are now appointed by, and hold their offices at
the pleasure of, the Head Master. He is bound, however,
whenever he may dismiss a master, to notify the fact and the
reason for it to the Governing Body.

The Act of 1798, while placing the appointment of all
other masters in the hands of the Head Master, and giving
him power to displace, remove, or discharge any of them for
immorality, neglect of duty, incapacity, or other reasonable
cause, had left his former independent position to the second
master, although expressly reserving to the Head Master the
general arrangements for the teaching and discipline of the
school. Other important changes have also been made dealing
with the rights which burgesses of Shrewsbury formerly pos-
sessed of free education for their children, and the restrictions
which had been been placed by the school ordinances or
by founders' wills on the appointment to exhibitions or


scholarships of boys educated at Shrewsbury School. In the
first case, subject to the rights of persons who were bur-
gesses at the time of the passing of the Public School Act
of 1868 to send their boys to school without the payment of
any tuition fee, the burgess claim to gratis education given
by the Act of 1798 has been entirely abolished. As re-
gards school scholarships and exhibitions all restrictions
to particular colleges at Oxford and Cambridge have been
removed, and all limitations as to the place of birth and
the parentage or lineage of the candidates have been done
away with, except in the cases of the exhibitions founded
by Dr. John Millington, and the two exhibitions founded by
the Rev. R. B. Podmore and Mrs. Noneley respectively.
The preference to which the sons of Mrs. Laura Seraphina
Beddoes were entitled in respect of the exhibitions founded
by Dr. John Millington, their ancestor, is expressly reserved
to them. The Podmore exhibition is still confined to
Shropshire boys, and can only be held at Trinity College,
Cambridge. The Noneley exhibition can only be held at
some college in the university of Oxford. The preferential
claims which certain persons and classes of persons had to
the Vicarage of Chirbury and the curacies of St. Mary,

Online LibraryGeorge William FisherAnnals of Shrewsbury School → online text (page 37 of 56)