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400 Objects for the 400th Anniversary

2020 is the 400th anniversary of the foundation of Merchant Taylors’ Schools by John Harrison, Merchant Taylor of London.

To mark this event, the archivists at the Boys’ School and the Girls’ School started to research objects to display on the Schools’ website. This process is running through to early 2020 and will present 400 objects [200 from each school] which have, in some way, a connection with the history of the school.

2020 Heritage Archive

#109 Stanfield Lower II in 1995-1996

Class photograph as seen in other objects but this time of Stanfield girls in their shirt-waister style dresses made of the same fabric as the school blouse, some girls are also wearing the elasticated nurse’s style belt. Just as the girls in this class are turning 30 this academic year, here’s what they looked like […]

#108 Garden Fete Programme

Miss Brash was the headmistress who had an enormous flair for fundraising and during her tenure most of the new builds took place, the dining room extension, the gym and the Derby Wing all were direct results of her leadership. This garden fete programme from 16th July 1960 gives us a flavour of a typical ambitious […]

#107 Reception Area 2008

This photograph shows an in between state of the school entrance and reception area. It was taken in 2008. Entry number 24 shows the entrance hall in 1956 with the double doors open to the outside. This one shows it before the new Vitreum was opened in 2009, the old sink belonging to the Mulberries […]

#106 Hand Drawn Birthday Card to Miss Fordham

This is the most beautiful hand painted card created by the Guides as their birthday card for Miss Fordham the headmistress. Her birthday on February 2nd (Candlemass in the High Anglican Church of which she was so fond) is marked by the Spring flowers, daffodils, snowdrops, fritillary and violets drawn around the fourteen patrol emblems. […]

#105 The Old Girl’s Association Badge

This beautiful brooch was worn by the chairperson of the Old Girl’s Association and was given to the archive many years ago. The cornflower being the symbol of the Old Girls. The Old Girl’s began as early as the 1890’s when they were known as the Old Girl’s Club and comprised OG student teachers and […]

#104 Embroidered Cover of Photograph Album

This rather charming hand stitched album cover was embroidered by Susan Handley. She was the Head Girl, Captain of Violet House and patrol leader of Oak patrol. It was presented to Miss Fordham on her birthday 2nd February 1926 as was the custom of the Guide unit to give the headmistress “Our Chief Guide” says […]

#103 Calamity Jane Photograph

This show was in November 2011 and was a typical Ms Tickle production with a very large cast, several costume changes and very ambitious scenery. It was also tremendous fun and this rather reflective photograph shows the character Adelaide Adams singing her big number, ”It’s Harry I’m Planning to Marry”, with her dance troupe behind. […]

#103 1885 Staff Photo

This photograph shows Canon Armour and his staff on the steps of the Tower Entrance in 1885. Readers should note how much taller Canon Armour is than his colleagues on the same (and other steps). His staff at this time included (from left to right): M B Autrand Taught French. Born in Prussia. Philip E […]

#102 Straw Boaters

Nowadays, straw boaters are a form of head gear seldom seen outside of a meeting at Henley! However, they once formed a part of the uniform of the Boys’ School. Exactly when they were first worn does not seem to have been recorded. In the earliest school photograph, of 1871 the boys are clearly still […]

#102 Official Opening of the Junior Block at Stanfield

This photograph shows the year 6 in April 2002 standing on the landing of the new junior block at Stanfield.   The then Master of Merchant Taylors Company, Alderman David Brewer came to officially open it on 29th April 2002  although it had been in use since the March. Eight classrooms were added and enabled […]