THE HIGH PAVEMENT SOCIETY (Founded 1989) The Website of the High Pavement Society - for former pupils of High Pavement Grammar School and former students and staff of High Pavement Sixth Form College and Sixth Form Centre.


This Section lists the principal “generally available”  information sources used in the compilation of the School’s History.    More specialist information is available through the Nottingham City Local Studies Library and local museums and archives.


High Pavement Remembered, 1788-1988

Edited by Alan Bates, 1988:     An A5-Format book with soft-covers and 170 pages, including 16 illustrations.   It was published by Nottinghamshire County Council, Education and printed by DESA Ltd, Nottingham © 1988 High Pavement College.     

The Back Cover carries the inscription:   

1788-1988, From chapel Charity School to County Sixth Form College, from Thomas Wheatcroft’s front room in Willoughby Row to the Bestwood Estate in north Nottingham, High Pavement has known several changes of designation and address but kept its name and remembered its past.”     

This volume commemorates the Bicentenary of High Pavement and offers a celebration in print of the long history of one of Nottingham’s best known educational establishments.”

Specially written by the staff of the College to commemorate the Bicentenary it is probably the best single document covering the History of High Pavement.    It is structured in 2-parts:

1. High Pavement Through the Years:    describes the history of the school

2. High Pavement Remembered:   reminiscences of life at the school over the years – obtained  from a wide range of sources    

Sadly, the book is thin on material about the Gainsford Crescent years and does not give full credit to the staff who made major contributions in those years.    Sadly also. this book has been out of print for many years now and copies are hard to find.

Victorian Nottingham – A Story in Pictures – Vol 20

Sub-Titled:    “Bankers & Banks of Nottinghamshire;  High Pavement School;  Farewell Queen Victoria”, by Richard Iliffe & Wilfred Baguley.

Published by the Nottingham Historical Film Unit, 7 The Crescent, Woodthorpe, Nottingham NG5 4FX.    © 1983 Richard Iliffe & Wilfred Baguley.       A4-Format glossy book with soft-covers and 88 pages in all, incl the 36 pages in the Section on High Pavement.  

Part 2 “High Pavement School”, Pages 38-74 [36 pages] covers mostly the history of the school during the Victorian period, roughly from foundation in 1788 until 1900.    In their “Acknowledgements”, the authors confirm that the Section on High Pavement School was the responsibility of Keith Train, Master at the School from 1927-66 (39 yrs) and also a well-known and much respected local historian with a regular programme on BBC Radio Nottingham.    

Old Nottingham

By Malcolm L Thomis, 1968.   Contains Chapter “High Pavement:   a Chapel and a School”.      Published in 1968 by David & Charles Ltd, South Devon House, Railway Station, Newton Abbot, Devon.     

Chapter 7,  “High Pavement; a chapel and a school”(P97-P116, 19 pages) covers the early years of the School.  It includes a portrait (facing P70) of Rev’d George Walker, Minister at High Pavement 1774-98 and Reports (P114) that school excursions to Hoveringham started in 1875.   

P113 states “in 1880, a special science department was set up which has often been claimed, quite mistakenly, as the first science teaching school department in the country.” although he gives no evidence to support this statement.   However, this Book was printed in 1968 whereas the research that proved that High Pavement was the first Organised Science School was not conducted until 1989-1994.   

Education and Society in Nineteenth Century Nottingham

By David Wardle, Head of Education Department, Padgate College of Education, 1971.      Published by Cambridge University Press.   First published 1971, First Paperback printing 2010.  ISBN-978-0-521-14387-5 (Paperback),   ISBN-978-0-521-08206-8 (Hardback),

In its original form, this work was presented as a PhD thesis to Nottingham University.  This work includes many references to High Pavement School.


Map of Nottingham in about 1800

Introduction                                                1

1. The Industrial Revolution                        4

2. Nottingham in the Early  Nineteenth Century                                                                       18

3. The Provision of Voluntary  Schools       37

4. The Work of the Voluntary  Schools       57

5. Elementary Education under  the school Board                                                                     82

6. Secondary, Technical and  Higher Education                                                                        117

7. Private Schools                                       147

8. Adult Education                                      170

9. Bibliography                                           197

10. Index                                                     203

Official Opening of the Gainsford Crescent School, 1955

booklet1.pdf “High Pavement Grammar School Official Opening Of New Buildings”, By Sir Ronald Gould, M.A.  5th October, 1955.    [12 Pages, A4].  

Includes a concise history of High Pavement School, a history of the development of the new Gainsford Crescent site and detailed ground plans of the new buildings.   Also includes a list of ALL previous Headmasters (with years), a list of the School Governors for years 1954/5 & 1955/6, a list of the members of the Education Committee 1955/6 and 9 photographs.

Click on Picture for a pdf of the document.


World War 1 - War Memorial

This bronze Memorial Plaque is currently located in the Entrance Hall of the High Pavement Sixth-Form building on Chaucer Street, Nottingham.

This Memorial Plaque was first unveiled in the Main Hall of the Stanley Road School in 1920.   The Plaque bears the names of 93 former members of the school who lost their lives in the First World War.   It carried the inscription “TO THE GLORY OF GOD AND IN THANKFUL REMEMBRANCE OF THE OLD BOYS AND MASTERS WHO LAID DOWN THEIR LIVES IN THE GREAT WAR 1914-1918”.  The Fallen are listed, according to the custom of the day, by Surname and Initial(s) only and significantly does NOT include even their First Names.   

In 1955, High Pavement School relocated to new premises in Gainsford Crescent, Bestwood Estate and this plaque was moved with the School and remounted in the Entrance Hall there.    It remained there for the next 40 years and through the years of the conversion to a 6th-Form College.   In 1995, building work required that the plaque be moved again and it was relocated to the wall at the back of the Main Hall at Gainsford Crescent (where this photo was taken).     

In 2002, the High Pavement Sixth-Form College (then part of New College Nottingham) relocated once again to new premises in Chaucer Street - its present location.   Again, the War Memorial moved with the College to the Chaucer Street building.

Notts County Council - World War 1 War Memorial (On-Line)

As Part of the Great War Centenary events, the Nottinghamshire County Council established an On-Line Roll of Honour which identified all the Great War Memorials in the County and brought together all the names of the Fallen in one single Database.   

The Home page can be found at:

  Nottinghamshire Great War Roll of Honour

and the specific page referencing the High Pavement School Memorial can be found at:

Nottingham - High Pavement School (

This page gives access to the full list of the Fallen and much information about each (including their first names and ages) extracted from Peter Foster’s Book “We Will Remember Them:   The Fallen of High Pavement School, Nottingham, 1914-1918”.

We Will Remember Them

“We Will Remember Them:   The Fallen of High Pavement School, Nottingham, 1914-1918”, by Peter Foster, Woodthorpe, Nottingham & distributed by the High Pavement Society.  Book published in 2017,  A4 format with 163 glossy pages & soft-covers, ISBN:  978-1-9997396-0-7.     

The book begins by describing, as background, the principal theatres of war.   It then goes on to consider in turn the 93 Names in the School’s “World War 1 War Memorial” plus 1 additional name identified by the author’s research.    For each of the Fallen in turn, the book describes their home and family background, their days at School, their civilian life and career and their service in the armed forces leading up to their untimely deaths.  The author, Peter Foster, is himself a former pupil of High Pavement School.

World War 2 – Book of Remembrance

The School’s memorial to the Fallen of the 2nd World War takes the form of a “Book of Remembrance”.        This Book is currently held in the Information Centre of the High Pavement Sixth-Form building on Chaucer Street.

Compared with the First World War Bronze Memorial Plaque this is a more modest memorial but probably more affordable at the time.     The 2nd World War was followed by several years of severe austerity (with food rationing not ending until 1954 and coal until 1958) whereas the 1st World War had been followed by a period of some prosperity.    The original intention had been to employ the calligraphy skills of the School in the creation of this Book and to eventually display the Book in a velvet-lined glass-fronted display case.     However, this display case doesn’t seem to have materialised yet.

They Shall Not Grow Old

“They Shall Not Grow Old:    The Fallen of High Pavement School, Nottingham 1939-1946”, by Peter Foster.    Book published in 2021,  by Adlard Print & Reprographics Ltd, The Old School, The Green, Ruddington Nottingham NG11 6HH.      A4 format with 216 glossy pages and soft-covers.   ISBN:  978-1-9997396-0-7.

The book is a companion to Peter’s earlier book “We Will Remember Them” in which he records the High Pavement fallen of the 1st World War.   It begins by describing, as background, the principal theatres of the 2nd World War and then goes on to consider in turn the 90 Names in the School’s “World War 2 Book of Remembrance”.   In also considers 4 additional names identified by the author’s research.    For each of the fallen in turn, the book describes their home and family background, their days at School, their civilian life and career and their service in the armed forces leading up to their untimely deaths.  The author, Peter Foster, is himself a former pupil of High Pavement School.


1.  Non-Denominational Charity School

“Victorian Nottingham – A Story in Pictures – Vol 20” by Richard Iliffe & Wilfred Baguley (listed above).   The “Non-Denominational” topic is well covered by Keith Train in the first few pages (P38-40) of this article.

2.  Organised Science School

High Pavement:  Britain's First Organised Science School

Russell-Gebbett, J.P. (1989), “High Pavement:  Britain's First Organised Science School”, History of Education Society Bulletin, 1989, Vol 43, Pages 17-29.    Publisher: History of Education Society.

This Paper includes the key extract from the “Bryce Commission (Royal Commission on Secondary Education) 1894-95, Minutes of Evidence 11, Para 1243:

“Giving evidence in 1894 to the Bryce Commission inquiring into the state of secondary education in England and Wales, Captain W.D. Abney, CB, FRS, Director of the Science and Art Department, referred briefly to the pioneering work in science teaching at High Pavement School, Nottingham.   He recalled that ten or eleven years previously there had been only one science school in existence – that was the Nottingham High Pavement School.”

High Pavement School Science 1885-1905: Struggle and Survival,  Part I

Russell-Gebbett, J. (1993), “High Pavement School Science 1885-1905: Struggle and Survival,  Part I”,  History of Education Society Bulletin, 1993, Vol 52, Pages: 22-34.   Publisher: History of Education Society.

High Pavement School Science 1885-1905: Struggle and Survival,  Part 2

Russell-Gebbett, J. (1994).    “High Pavement School Science 1885-1905: Struggle and Survival,  Part II”,  History of Education Society Bulletin, 1994, Vol 53, Pages 23-34.     Publisher: History of Education Society.

Moralising and ‘Dirty Fingers’:  Nineteenth Century Science Textbooks in two Nottingham Schools.

Russell-Gebbett, J. (1998). “Moralising and ‘Dirty Fingers’:  Nineteenth Century Science Textbooks in two Nottingham Schools”.    Paradigm, No. 26 (October, 1998).    Paradigm is the Journal of the Textbook Colloquium.   

This Paper compares the teaching of Science in High Pavement School with that in the Nottingham Blue-Coat School.   It would appear that the Textbook Colloquium no longer exists and this Journal is no longer published.    Copies of this paper can therefore be hard to find.

3.  State-Funded School

The first County school?

Fox.pdf“The first County school?”, by John Fox (Former Chief Education Officer for Nottinghamshire).     Times Educational Supplement dated 27.5.1988.  

This article was written on the occasion of the High Pavement School’s Bicentenary in 1988.

Click on Picture for a pdf of the document

4.  Women’s Education

Education of Girls and Women in Nottingham Between 1870 and 1914

Jones, Wendy. 1998. “The Education of Girls and Women in Nottingham Between 1870 and 1914: With Special Reference to Domestic Ideology and Middle Class Influence”.   [404 Pages, A4]

A Thesis submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of Doctor of Philosophy of Loughborough University.   Supervisor:  Prof. John Thomas, April, 1998.   © by Wendy Jones 1997.

A copy of document can be downloaded from:

The education of girls and women in Nottingham between 1870 and 1914: with special reference to domestic ideology and middle class influence (



CHAPTER I:  The Development of Education After 1870 With Particular Reference to Nottingham  1

CHAPTER II:  Issues in the History of Women's Education  33


CHAPTER Ill:  The City of Nottingham  83

CHAPTER IV:  Academic Subjects in the Curriculum 92

CHAPTER V:  Religion, Games and Exercise  1 07

CHAPTER VI:  Craft Subjects: Needlework 120

CHAPTER VII:  Craft Subjects: Domestic Economy, Cookery and Laundry 139

CHAPTER VIII:  Craft Subjects: Housewifery, Babycare and Manual Instruction 172

CHAPTER IX:  Problems of Access, Attendance, Absence and Punishment  189

CHAPTER X:  Further Aspects of Elementary Education  222

CHAPTER XI:  Half Timers, School Leavers, Industrial Schools, the Workhouse and Ragged Schools  235

CHAPTER XII:  Higher Grade Schools 255

CHAPTER XIII:  Pupil Teachers and Teachers 264

CHAPTER XIV:  Adult Education  284

CHAPTER XV:  Higher Education  301

CHAPTER XVI:  Middle Class Influence in Education 324

CHAPTER XVII:  Informal Education  342

CHAPTER XVIII:  Private Education 350


 BIBLIOGRAPHY (including interviews with local residents)· 387

5.   Engineering Courses

An experimental engineering course in a grammar school

 H. Davies (1959) “An experimental engineering course in a grammar school”, The Vocational Aspect of Secondary and Further Education, 11:22, 28-30, DOI: 10.1080/03057875980000031.    

A copy of the document can be found at:

An experimental engineering course in a grammar school: The Vocational Aspect of Education: Vol 11, No 22 (

Other Documents

Culture and the Grammar School

By Davies, Harry 1965 “Culture and the Grammar School”, 1 ed, Copyright Year 1965,  ISBN 9781138221154, Published 25 Sep 2018 by Routledge [192 Pages, Soft-Covers, A5-Format].    This book, by former High Pavement Headmaster Harry Davies, was first published in 1965, 2 years after he left High Pavement to take up a position as Director of Education at the University of Nottingham.   It has however been recently reprinted (2018) as 1 Edition.    

The book is described by the Publishers as follows: This book, first published in 1965, discusses the nature of the grammar school, its curriculum and teaching methods, comparisons with sixth form education, and the change in its organisation and attitudes during a time of rapid social change in 1960s Britain.   This title will be of interest to students of history, sociology and education.”

Prof Davies was clearly aware of the particular difficulties faced by those pupils who were first in the family to go to a Grammar School in coming to terms with the Grammar School ethos and lifestyle.    Those with an older sibling at the Grammar School fitted in more smoothly.


The above documents owe much to the research of a number of “real” historians who have diligently researched the history of the School in depth and whose work has been documented and appeared in print:

Keith S.S. TRAIN:     Keith was on the staff of the School for some 39 years, from 1927-1966.    He principally taught Science but for many years served also as Deputy Headmaster and was loved and respected by pupils and colleagues alike.    Both before and after his retirement, he made an immense contribution to the field of Local History both as a participant in the scholarly proceedings of the Thoroton Society and as a sympathetic populariser of the subject on the local BBC Radio Nottingham.

Malcolm THOMIS:     Malcolm was on the staff of the School from 1960-63 and taught History. He went on to become Professor of History at the University of Queensland, Australia.

David WARDLE:    In 1971 he was Head of the Education Department, Padgate College of Education.

Geoffrey OLDFIELD:    A well known Nottingham Local History author, Geoffrey also an Old Pavior and a long-term member of the High Pavement Society.

Mrs Jean P RUSSELL-GEBBETT  B.Sc. M.A.:    In 1961 at the Department of Education, University of Nottingham.