The Blue School, Wells

The Blue School, Wells

Infobox UK school
name = The Blue School

latitude = 51.2125
longitude = -2.6542
motto = "Recta Certa"
(Straight and true}
phone = 01749 678799
fax = 01749 836215
established = 1641
type = State school
head = Nobody
street = Kennion Road
city = Wells
county = Somerset
country = England
enrollment = 1460
lower_age = 11
upper_age = 18
publication =
website =

The Blue School is a coeducational, secondary school located in Wells, Somerset, England. It has 1460 students aged 11–18 of both genders and all ability levels and is the largest school in Somerset. [ Somerset County Council Press release] ] It is currently a Church of England Voluntary controlled school. The school motto is "Recta Certa" meaning straight and true.

The Office for Standards in Education (Ofsted) identified the school in 1999/2010 as a "particularly successful school". [ [ Complete Guide to Wells] ] The school was recently awarded the title 'outstanding' for the academic year 2006/07. The School is a Specialist Science College and in 2006 the Princess Royal opened a new science centre.

The Blue School was the first pilot for an innovative approach to School Councils based on self-selection called Learning to Lead [ Learning to Lead] ] [ DCSF research report reference DCSF RR001 - page 55 - 60] ] The School Community Council received praise in the School's 2007 Ofsted report.


The school was founded in 1654 as one of the first free schools in the country. [ [ Grammar & Charity Schools] at [] ] The name Blue comes from the early uniforms which were blue in colour. An example of one of these early school uniforms is on display at the school.

In 1654 Margaret, widow of Ezekiel Barkham of Wells, purchased a farm in Yenston, to endow a school in Wells. The Blue School retained the farm for nearly 350 years until it was sold in 1990 and 1992. [ [ 'Henstridge,'] "A History of the County of Somerset: Volume 7": Bruton, Horethorne and Norton Ferris Hundreds (1999), pp. 108-19, at [] ] The income from the endowment was to be used for paying a schoolmaster's salary of £20-0-0 pa. and the residue for apprenticing the boys when they could 'read, write and cast accounts'. [ The Eldridge Deposit] at [] ] The school owned a number of properties in the area scattered over several parishes. [ The Eldridge Deposit] at [] ]

Other schools were united with the Blue School foundation, including Hodge's Charity School. [ The Eldridge Deposit] at [] ]

A charity for the benefit of the poor of St. Cuthbert's parish was established in 1675 by the will of Adrian Hickes of London, although lands in Wells and Glastonbury to endow the charity were not purchased until 1701. In 1713 a voluntary subscription school was established in Wells for boys and girls and a schoolroom was built for this purpose by Philip Hodges. He also purchased land in Glastonbury St. John, the income from which was to be used to pay the master's salary. In 1715 it was proposed that a charity established by Barkham be amalgamated with that deriving from the Hickes bequest.

Philip Hodges' will of 1723 empowered the master of the subscription school established in 1713 to teach also the pupils of Barkham's charity school. Lands in Lympsham, East Pennard and Pylle were purchased in 1732 and an estate at Norwood Park, Glastonbury in 1735. In 1740 the estates of all three charities were transferred to new trustees. Some property in Frome was acquired between 1732 and 1764 and in Queen Camel between 1730 and 1739. The charities all became part of the Blue School foundation. [ The Eldridge Deposit] at [] ]

Notable pupils

Speleologist and founder of Wells Museum, Herbert E. Balch (1869–1958) won a scholarship to the school. Filmaker Edgar Wright was a student at the school from 1985 to 1992. Actor Duncan Pow became a student at the school in 1992.


External links

* [ Blue School website]
* [ Learning To Lead]
* [ Blue School, conferencing facilities]
* [ The Blue School, Wells; case study]

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