ⓘ Lady Hawkins School
Lady Hawkins School is situated in the market town of Kington in north west Herefordshire. It operates as a secondary school, which takes children from the age of 11 through to the age of 16. The school is currently led by headteacher Paul Jennings.
The school comprises two houses named after prominent figures in Kingtons past: Banks and Garrick.
The sixth form is one of the smallest in Herefordshire and was threatened with closure in 2006; however, it remained open but then in 2019 it finally closed.
The school was founded on 29 September 1632 with the funding of Lady Margaret Hawkins Married to Sir John Hawkins who had died in 1619. In her will, dated 23 April 1619, she left £800 for the purchasing of lands or tenements of a yearly value of forty pounds for and towards the perpetual maintenance of a learned and choice preaching divine, the Master, to keep a free school in Kington, in the County of Herefordshire, and of a learned and discreet Usher under him, for the instructing and teaching of youths and children in literature and good education.
Captain Anthony Lewis, servant to Lady Hawkins and acting executor of the will, purchased School Farm, Upper Hergest, in 1622 to produce the necessary forty pounds a year for running the school. He paid £26 13s 4d for a piece of ground in Kington on which the school would be built upon. Lewis contracted John Abel of Sarnesfield to build it. John Abel, who was Carpenter to King Charles I, was to provide the materials and was paid £240 for his work.
The school is now housed in modern buildings erected in 1962 and 1973, with other buildings erected more recently, almost all of which have been refurbished between 1990 and 1995 to meet the challenges and demands of recent curriculum developments. The original 1600s building is now in use as a private residence.
The school has a tradition on visiting the nearby parish church, St. Marys, to give thanks for its foundation and all those who have served in it over three and a half centuries.
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