Judgement at this year’s dinner

This year’s speaker is Judge Durham Hall (1963-69). The Learned Judge was born in 1951. It is suggested that his aunt was the first Labour Mayoress of Sheffield and his mother might have had a wool shop in Sharrow Vale Road.

He started at boarding school, but then came to King Edward VII. He obtained a Law Degree from Nottingham University (1970/73). As he continued his education in law, he was then called to the Bar of Gray's Inn in July 1975, and began further training to be a Barrister by means of pupillage with one Michael Walker (an eminent Sheffield Barrister who became a Crown Court Judge and then the first Honorary Recorder of Sheffield).

He began with a general legal practice in well known and highly regarded Chambers in Sheffield when called to the Bar, and was a successful and respected Barrister for a number of years. As his practice developed, he specialised more and more in criminal law, acting for the prosecution or the defence in increasingly serious criminal proceedings. He was appointed Queens Counsel in 1995, and after that his practice involved the most serious or complicated cases in criminal law.

He was then appointed as a Crown Court Judge in July 2003, and was based originally on the Wales and Chester circuit, sitting in Cardiff and Swansea Crown Courts. In 2008, he was appointed to the North Eastern Circuit, based at Leeds and Bradford Crown Courts, where he is currently based. Many of his cases have been reported nationally throughout the last few years.

Old Eds Prize Winner Eleanor Hardy

This year's Old Edwardians presentation, to the ‘best effort’ student of the previous year, was awarded to Eleanor Hardy, a judgement that apparently the staff found easy this year.

Eleanor joined King Edward VII School in September 2002. Ellie gained a virtual ‘clean sweep’ of A* grades at GCSE, and matched this at AS, where she obtained 5 'A grades, with an ‘A’ in every sub-unit of each subject in the examinations. Ellie achieved straight grade As at A level and is now studying English Literature at Somerville College, Oxford. Ellie is an exceptional student and an exceptional person.

Throughout her time at school Ellie had an intense desire to be involved – whether with her work for the Duke of Edinburgh award, her volunteer work with younger students both inside and outside school, her musical activities or her work with Blank Slate Theatre Company. She was very aware of her responsibility to the wider community and was genuinely delighted by the opportunity to immerse herself in activities which allow her to work with and support others. This was very evident in her visit to Auschwitz and the subsequent work she undertook to educate others about the significance of the death camps.

Ellie achieved the accolade of being the most supportive student in the poll for the Leavers’ Year Book. It is a judgement that all her teachers share.

An invitation to KES!

Old Edwardians are invited to visit KES on the lunchtime of Maundy Thursday, to find out more about the planned investment in the school. The school has kindly agreed to provide an element of lunch, some musical entertainment provided by students at the school, and access to a purpose built display detailing the planned investment.

In order that our association provides accurate numbers to the school of those of us proposing to take up this offer, it is requested that the dinner form is correctly completed.

Obviously, if any Old Eds propose to visit at lunchtime, but not attend the dinner, then they should still complete and return the dinner booking form.

Arrival time for the lunchtime event is 12:30 pm.

More international accolades for KES

Building on the international school award achieved in 2008, the school was named the Spanish School of the year 2009. The award was presented at the Spanish Embassy in London, and means £400 worth of Spanish teaching aids, £500 for the school, a teacher and guest on a three day Spanish language course in Spain, and 8 students and a teacher on a five day study visit to Cantabria. Spanish is popular at the school and in 2009, 37 students gained their Spanish GCSEs in year 10 (4th Year).

 Dear Old Edwardian

As we move further into 2010 I report on an association that remains in good health, with a membership that continues to grow steadily.

You will see details in this newsletter about the huge investment being made at the upper school, which gives us all confidence in the future of King Edwards as the quality educational institution we all remember.

The school is offering all of us a one off opportunity to visit the school on the lunchtime of Maundy Thursday, where we will be given refreshments, hear music and see a presentation on the new planned investment at the school.

Please ensure you register your proposed attendance if you are available when you book for the dinner. We have asked Head Teacher Beverley Jackson on her view of where the Old Eds Association might be able to help, and expect to have details of an appeal to announce at the Annual dinner.

John Phillips

Old Edwardians President


KES is in the money!

King Edward VII Upper School Sheffield is to receive buildings investment to the value of £20m over the next two years, as part of the Building Schools for the Future programme. This represents the largest value investment in the original school buildings since the school was built in the 1840s!

The investment includes the delivery of a brand new two storey building which will replace the existing art block at the back of the school, and run further behind the school. There will also be a new sports hall built behind the Lewis Building, in the area of the old Scout hut.

The new building is likely to be in stark contrast to the 1840 structure, being built mainly out of steel and glass. It will contain science labs and break out space for experiments.

abcMany things won’t be touched as part of the new investment and these include the vestibule and assembly hall, honours boards, original floors and the library.

The ground floor though will also now contain an information commons, and a special learning difficulties unit/family support area.

The school plans to start a new initiative aimed at the parents of the 1200 student school, to be launched as Friends of King Edward VII School.

Old Edwardians interested in more information about the planned investment will be able to attend lunchtime briefing session at the school on the day of the Annual Dinner. (See separate story.)

Last year’s Dinner

Old Edwardian’s stalwart Chris Mower (1967-74) was last year’s Old Edwardian’s dinner speaker and reminded those present of why he has been such a good joke raconteur over the years. In interest terms he was almost eclipsed though, when newly appointed head teacher Beverley Jackson gave us an excellent ten minute introduction to her new role at the school. Attendance was around 180 and representation of the fairer sex continues to increase as a percentage of the total.

Good reading can be found in ‘40 years on’

The book 'Forty Years On’ was published last year to mark 40 years of comprehensive education. It is currently available from the school. The author is John Cornwell, a Governor of the School, who also wrote the much-admired ‘King Ted’s’, the Centenary History of the School 1905–2005.

While some Old Edwardians believe the comprehensive era has not been the school's finest period, the book reveals that the original spirit of the school, as one of extraordinary achievement, remains today.

Cost is £5 plus 65p P&P. Contact Jo Jackson, King Edward VII School, Glossop Rd, Sheffield S10 2PW, at jjackson at oldedwardians.org.uk or telephone 0114 229 6568.

Extracts from the book:


Sheffield City Council decision that all secondary schools will become comprehensive schools.


New proposals from City Council for eight tertiary education colleges and the end of school sixth forms.


Russell Sharrock appointed as the sixth Headmaster of KES


Passed by City Council in 1985, but still needing Government approval.


Last cohort of grammar school pupils, who passed 11+ examination, admitted to KES.


The Conservative Government “save” six Sixth Forms in the Hallam Constituency, including KES. Only six tertiary colleges allowed, later amalgamating and becoming Sheffield College in 1992.


KES, along with all other Sheffield LEA secondary schools, becomes a co-educational comprehensive school.

KES is amalgamated with Crosspool School whose building becomes Lower School.

Russell Sharrock is appointed Headmaster of the “new” school and it is named King Edward VII School. Crosspool School ceases to exist.


Conservative Education Act, possibly the most significant education legislation since 1944. Michael Lewis becomes seventh Headteacher of KES.


New building at Upper School, named the Michael Lewis Building in 2008.


KES designated as a Language College. In 2009 KES has 14 partner schools worldwide.


Girls recruited to the Sixth Form. There are also girls in the new First Form (Y7) who join those who were already at Crosspool School.

1999, 2002 and 2005

KES awarded Sportsmark for PE and Games provision.


Creating and developing a comprehensive school on four sites.


Rebuilt Lower School opened, funded by PFI.


ROSLA – Raising of the school leaving age to 16.


KES celebrates its Centenary.


The “Flour Bomb” incident.


Mrs. Beverley Jackson becomes eighth Headteacher of KES.


John Ramsden, KES 1959-66

Professor John Ramsden, who died of cancer aged 61 on 16th October 2009, was the leading historian of the Conservative party in his generation, an accomplished film and cultural scholar and a powerful force in the rise of arts and humanities at Queen Mary, University of London, where he taught and administered for 36 years until his retirement in 2008.

In scholarly terms, Ramsden's productivity was formidable. He produced nine single-authored books, six of them on the Conservatives, concluding with his overview of the party since 1830, An Appetite for Power, which will hold the field for some considerable time as the best single-volume history. He co-authored Ruling Britannia: A Political History of Britain Since 1688 (1990) with his Queen Mary friend and colleague, Professor Glyn Williams. And he edited and contributed profusely to the Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century British Politics (2002).

John was born in Sheffield, the son of Cyril and Mary Ramsden. Ramsden senior worked for the National Coal Board. His intellect, zest for reading and a gift for self-organisation propelled him through King Edward VII school in Sheffield (1959-66) to Corpus Christi College, Oxford, where he graduated with a first in modern history.

Full obituary in The Guardian/OE website.

Edgar ‘Bill’ Trevor Williams, KES 1928-31

Born Nov 29 1912, died Mon 26 June 1995.

A clergyman's son, Edgar Trevor Williams was born on Nov 29 1912 and educated at Tettenhall College, Staffs, King Edward's School, Sheffield, and Merton College, Oxford, where he was a Postmaster (scholar) and took a First in History. After a lectureship at Liverpool University he returned to Merton in 1937 as a junior research fellow.

In June 1939 he was commissioned in the Supplementary Reserve of Officers and later joined the 1st King's Dragoon Guards, serving with armoured cars in the Western Desert in 1941. In February 1942 he saw action against Rommel's troops in Cyrenaica.

In August 1942 General Montgomery took command of the 8th Army. "I discovered there," he recalled, "a major in the Intelligence Branch in the King's Dragoon Guards by name Williams, an Oxford Don and had a brilliant brain... it was a conversation with him which gave me the idea which played a large part in winning the Battle of Alamein."

He was thrice mentioned in despatches during the war; awarded the DSO in 1943; appointed CBE in 1944, CB in 1946, and a Deputy Lieutenant for Oxfordshire in 1964. He was knighted in 1973.

More detail on the OE website. Including an obituary in the New York Times

Peter John Landin

Peter John Landin, KES 1940-47, died 3 June 2009, was a British computer scientist. He was one of the first to realize that the lambda calculus could be used to model a programming language, an insight that is essential to development of both functional programming and denotational semantics.

Landin, a graduate from Clare College, Cambridge University, was active in the definition of the ALGOL programming language and was responsible for inventing the SECD machine, the first abstract process virtual machine ever defined, and the ISWIM programming language, defining the Landin off-side rule and for coining the term syntactic sugar. The off-side rule allows bounding scope declaration by use of white spaces as seen in languages such as Miranda, Haskell and Python.

Full obituary on OE website.

Other OE’s remembered - more details can be found on OE website

Teacher Alan Finch who died from cancer on 2nd July 2009.

Alan arrived at KES at the time of the conversion to comprehensive conversion at the school and stayed till the mid 80’s. He is chiefly remembered as the man in charge of the then newly built car maintenance facility under the shelter. Many recalling him are on the OE website.

David Hardy, KES 1950-1957, died suddenly in 2009 after a heart attack.

David went on to study classics at Cambridge and then devoted himself to promoting modern Greek, teaching in the late sixties and early seventies at a University in Northern Ireland, writing the odd book and acting as an adviser to the BBC for one of its televised Greek language programme. He lived for many years in Greece where he died.

Teacher WC Hall (1960-64)

“Of my nine jobs, the one at King Ted's was one of the most fulfilling and I have happy memories of my four years”.

WC Hall was known to us as Charlie Hall. Although he was a Chemistry graduate, he arrived at KES in 1960 to teach Physics says David Cook, KES 1956-63 on OE website.

Martin Young, KES 1956-63, died October 1999.

John Billington, KES 1940-49, a regular at the OEA dinners, died suddenly on 27 October 2009.

Franz Mendl, KES 1936-42 died on Wednesday 4 February 2009. He was 85.