"The Mill" - JRGS Alumni Society Home Page

"... To make your
children capable
of honesty is the
beginning of education,"

- John Ruskin (1819-00)

Our School Song:

"When the light of truth is fading and the torch
of faith burns low."
>>full lyrics


Until early July 2020 this curated website served as an interactive repository for various images from our days at John Ruskin Central, Grammar and High Schools, and a place to share personal memories from its 100-year era.

The contact for this website, which is now in permanent stasis, is Paul Graham | more

Our school started life on the 12th of January, 1920, at Scarbrook Road, Croydon, as John Ruskin Boys' Central School, before moving in 1935 to Tamworth Road, where it achieved Grammar School status in April 1945. (Reportedly, the Scarbrook Road site was near a house in Market Street that was occupied by John Ruskin's Croydon relatives, The Richardsons.)

The first principal teacher was William Field MA, followed in 1934 by Arthur William McLeod MA. Mr. Field died in February 1938, and Mr. McLeod in July 1956, at the age of 71. The 36-year-old John Christopher Lowe MA, who took over as headmaster of the newly upgraded John Ruskin Grammar School from Mr. McLeod in 1946, spent 27 years at the school until his retirement in 1973, and was replaced by William Patterson. Mr. Lowe also built up a small collection of newspaper cuttings, photographs, books and pamphlets by and about John Ruskin.

In January 1955 John Ruskin Grammar School for Boys moved to a new site on Upper Shirley Road, Shirley, several miles south east of Croydon, which location featured an elegant windmill in the grounds between the main school buildings and a sports area.

During 1971 the school was renamed John Ruskin High School - instead of a three-form entry at 11, the school offered four forms for boys and girls aged 14, the latter transferring from Shirley High School - eventually to became a 14-18 Co-Educational Comprehensive School. Anne Smith, who had joined the school from Selhurst Grammar School for Girls in 1970, and was a long time English Teacher at JRHS, became principal in 1990.

Sadly, in 1991 the school was demolished to make way for a new housing development, the upper forms relocating to a Sixth Form College in Selsdon, the former home of John Newnham Secondary Selective School. Today John Ruskin College is a Skills for Life College, with courses that lead to BTEC (Business & Technology Education Council) qualifications in a variety of vocational subjects. more In 2019, following a merger with East Surrey College incorporating Reigate School of Art, the operation became part of Orbital South Colleges.

>> ARCHIVED CONTRIBUTIONS ... Alumni memories, recollections and images <<

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