Crewkerne Grammar School

Crewkerne Grammar School was a grammar school in the town of Crewkerne in the English county of Somerset. It was founded in 1499 by John de Combe, a precentor of Exeter Cathedral and former vicar of Crewkerne. The school closed in 1904, after a prolonged financial crisis, and re-opened the following year as an ordinary secondary school under the Board of Education.[1][2][3]

The old school building, now a parish church hall
Blue plaque commemorating the use of the building by the school

With the closure of the School at De Combe House on the 'Mount Pleasant' site (which later was used by Wadham School), a majority of artefacts were moved to St Martins Preparatory School and town's museum. Later, Crewkerne Grammar was re-established as St Martins Prep School in Abbey Street (the building opposite the hall) which used the former grammar school facilities including the gymnasium and hall in the town, the pre-school closed in 2003 becoming a day nursery only.[4]

The grammar school building, dating from 1636 and in use until 1882, is now the parish church hall and is a Grade II listed building.[5][6]

Notable former pupils include:

School houses included:

  • Nelson (red)
  • Blake (blue)
  • Hardy (green)
  • Drake (yellow)

School History, history of the School in Abbey Street, Crewkerne:

  • Crewkerne Grammar School - founded c1499 by John de Combe, SCHOLA CROKORNIENSIS

School motto: Venite filii obedite mihi, timorem Domini ego vos docebo

  • 1547 John Byrde
  • 1609-1613 Rev. James Wood
  • 1613-1637 Rev. John Ball
  • 1637-1645 Rev. Thomas Lambert M.A.
  • 1645 Rev. Josiah Tompkins
  • 1647 Mr. Jarvis Stipend
  • 1647 James Metford
  • ...
  • 1838-1875 Rev. Charles Penny D.D.
  • Crewkerne School - school moved to new premises de Combe House 1882.
  • 1883 Rev. Frederic Weller M.A.
  • 1904 -prolonged financial crisis it was closed, re-opening in the following year as an ordinary secondary school; Wadham (Board of Education)
  • 1905-1935 gap!?
  • Pre-1939 - not much is known of the origins back in Thames Ditton in Berkshire, but it is believed it was on the site of a 'new' current school which established after the war in 1946
  • 1939 St Martins School arrives in Crewkerne, having moved the whole school to Somerset from Thames Ditton in Berkshire before WW2, making use of the former Grammar School properties, de Combe, Abbey Street, Chard Road and Mount Pleasant.
  • 1940 Acquires Crewkerne Grammar School Hall and playing fields.
  • 1946- ???
  • 1953- ???
  • 1964-??? Head: Mr J. H. Blackmore
  • 1976-1984 Head: Lt Col Tony and Mrs Dowse-Brennan
  • 1984-1991 St Martins Prep School in Abbey Street, Mr and Mrs Murrell
  • 1991-2003 Julie Murrell
  • 2003 Closed to Juniors, became pre-school only
  • 2003-2010? St Martins Day Nursery & Pre-School
  • 2012 -Closed in 2012.


  1. ^ "History of Crewkerne in South Somerset". A vision of Britain through time. University of Portsmouth and others. Retrieved 2012-03-08.
  2. ^ Wilson, John Marius (1870–72). Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales.
  3. ^ "Crewkerne Grammar School". The National Archives. Government of the United Kingdom. Retrieved 2012-03-08.
  4. ^ "St Martins Nursery Crewkerne".
  5. ^ "Parish Church Hall (old Grammar School), Crewkerne". Retrieved 2012-03-08.
  6. ^ "Parish Church Hall (Old Grammar School)". English Heritage. Retrieved 8 March 2012.