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Haberdashers' Aske's Hatcham College

Haberdashers' Aske's Hatcham College is a state secondary school with academy status located in New Cross. The school was formerly a grammar school, then a comprehensive City Technology College and now an Academy operating between two sites near New Cross Gate in South-East London. In 2005 the Federation of Haberdashers’ Aske’s Hatcham College and Haberdashers’ Aske’s Knights Academy (formerly the failing Malory School, Downham) was formed by the Worshipful Company of Haberdashers to create the Haberdashers' Aske's Academies Federation in order to increase the availability of an Askes’ education to more students and make a wider use of the strengths that Aske’s has to offer. Haberdashers' Aske's Hatcham College now has academy status specialising in music.

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MottoServe and Obey
FounderRobert Aske
Local authorityLewisham
Department for Education URN135073 Tables
Chairman of GovernorsRichard Glover
HeadmasterAlex Williamson
GenderMixed (formerly Boys)
Age11 to 18
Pepys Road Site



After a bequest made by the merchant Robert Aske to the Worshipful Company of Haberdashers on his death in 1689, a school and almshouses were built at Hoxton near the city of London. When, in 1874, the almshouses were closed, the educational capacity was enlarged and split into two parts, one north of the river and one south. The northern section established a boys' and girls' school in Hoxton, which eventually became Haberdashers' Aske's Boys School and Haberdashers' Aske's School for Girls, both now sited in Elstree, Hertfordshire. For the southern section, land was purchased at Hatcham, now better known as New Cross Gate, for the foundation of boys' and girls' schools on what is now known as Telegraph Hill. The north London school became generally known as "Haberdashers'", while the south London schools became generally known as "Aske's", though their official titles were parallel. Former pupils of the Hatcham schools are called "Old Askeans".

Two schools were complete on the site now on Pepys Road by late 1875, and in 1889 the site now on Jerningham Road was purchased and the girls' school relocated to the new site.

Under the Education Act 1944 the two schools became grammar schools, and in 1979 became comprehensive schools.

A failing local primary school, Monson Road, was closed. The college and secondary school were joined together, giving all pupils preferential and automatic rights to attend secondary education. Initial optimism for this new school was short lived following a fire at the new Temple Grove school in 2010. There were no injuries, but the school was forced to move to the Hatcham College main site, with temporary buildings at the College being erected. The temporary buildings were estimated to last for up to three years.[citation needed]

Current organisationEdit

In 1995 the two schools were combined under a single headteacher (Dr Elizabeth Sidwell - formerly girls' school headteacher and former chief executive officer of the federation), and the name Haberdashers' Aske's Hatcham College. Sidwell resigned in 2011 and was replaced by Mr Adrian Percival. Teaching continues to be largely single-sex except for the co-educational sixth form. Boys and girls were generally taught on their traditional separate sites until 2002, when the boys' and girls' sites were re-organised as lower-school and upper-school sites. Years 7, 8 and 9 are based at the Jerningham Road site; years 10, 11 and the 6th Form are based at the Pepys Road site. The school sports field is located close by on St. Asaph Road in Nunhead.

The current College Principal is Mr Declan Jones, who was previously deputy Principal and replaced Mrs Michelle Adamson. Dr Elizabeth M Sidwell became the CEO of the Haberdashers' Aske's Academies Federation after holding the position of Principal until the creation of the federation. The role of the CEO has now been taken over by Mr Adrian Percival and Dr Elizabeth M Sidwell has moved from Askes to become Schools Commissioner for England.

The forms in each year belong to one of four houses. These are named after significant figures in the college's history and are identified by colours. The students belong to the same house for their school life and belong to either Connolly - Green (formerly Doigs/Lawrences), Dyson - Red (formerly Mackenzies/Jethas), Goddard - Blue (formerly Dodkins/Crocketts) or Soper - Yellow (formerly Fords/Patricks); all are named after previous headmasters or headmistresses (formerly heads of houses, Mr Doig, Miss F Mackenzie, Mr Dodkins and Mrs Ford), with the exception of the last, in honour of distinguished Old Askean Donald Soper. The students wear a blue school tie with stripes in their house colour. The school badge is the coat of arms of the Haberdashers' Company, and displays the motto "Serve And Obey".

House Informal name House Colour Tie Stripe Colour
Goddard Blue Dark Blue
Connolly Green Dark Green
Dyson Red Red
Soper Yellow Yellow/Gold

Notable alumniEdit

Partner SchoolsEdit


External linksEdit