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St. Bartholomew's School (known colloquially as St Bart's) is a co-educational state funded academy school founded in 1466 in Newbury, Berkshire in the United Kingdom. It accepts students aged 11–18 and has approximately 1,700 students on roll, including a sixth form of around 400. St. Bartholomew's is thought to be the 42nd oldest school in the UK still in existence.[2][3]

St. Bartholomew's School
St Barts logo.png
Andover Road

, ,
RG14 6JP

Coordinates51°23′31″N 1°19′55″W / 51.392°N 1.332°W / 51.392; -1.332Coordinates: 51°23′31″N 1°19′55″W / 51.392°N 1.332°W / 51.392; -1.332
MottoAd lucem
(Towards the light)
FounderHenry Wormestall
SpecialistBusiness and Enterprise College
Department for Education URN137465 Tables
HeadmistressJulia Mortimore
Age11 to 18
Houses     Curnock
Colour(s)Purple (school colour)     
Former pupilsOld Newburians Association
GCSE results466.9 points/student[1]

St. Bartholomew's is one of only a few state schools to participate in the Combined Cadet Force (a programme sponsored by the Ministry of Defence), with around 200 cadets between the ages of 14 and 18 taking part in weekly training sessions, activities, and residential trips. It is also one of the few state schools to play the sport of lacrosse. The school has produced many talented players, some of whom have gone on to represent England and Wales.

The school, in July 2007, became the first state school to win in the Schools and Universities Polo Association Cup.[4]

House systemEdit

The school operates a house system whereby the student body is divided into four houses, each named for a former pupil who died in the First World War:

  • Alexander Herbert Davis - Red
  • Robert Arthur Patterson - Yellow/Purple
  • George Ashwin Curnock - Green
  • Bertram Saxelbye Evers - Blue

Patterson house coloursEdit

Patterson house uses the colour gold, whilst purple is used occasionally in conjunction with the main colour. The fourth house in the boys' school formerly always used purple, but switched to the gold of the girls' school's fourth house when the schools merged in 1975.


Students from each house enter into annual competitions in sport, music and drama versus the other houses, where pupils represent their house. Examples of these are the house netball, house football, house rugby, house lacrosse, house hockey, house tennis, house rounders, house dance, house choir, house instrumental, and many others. There are also house plays which are written by year 12 students (aged 16 and 17) and performed by year 10 students (aged 14 and 15). The winning house in each competition is awarded a certain number of points, which are accrued during the academic year. The house with the most points at the end of the year will win the House Championship. Junior/Senior House Colour Awards, in the form of ties, are awarded at the end of Years 10 and/or 12 to students who excel in a certain field, either academic or extracurricular. The ties are distinct from the normal school tie, consisting solely of the colour of the wearer's house. Girls were once given sashes instead of ties but this practice fell out of favour with the students and so they were awarded ties just as their peers were.

Other house eventsEdit

Each house holds an annual house evening, where students entertain parents and staff with music, dance, drama, and comic sketches. Each house also has a nominated house charity. Students try to raise as much money as possible for this charity through sponsored events and activities during the school year.


  • Phase one of the Ad Lucem project was completed in October 2010, meaning that the school is now located on one site, with an entrance from Buckingham Road, adjacent to the old Luker site. St Bartholomew's was formerly based on two sites. The Luker site, at one end of Buckingham Road was formerly Newbury County Girls' Grammar School. The Wormestall site, at the opposite end of Buckingham Road, was formerly St Bartholomew's Boys' Grammar School. The two grammar schools merged in 1975 to form a large comprehensive.
  • Both sites formerly enjoyed large playing fields, tennis courts and sports changing rooms. Most of this space was lost as a result of the building of the new school. However, the school still retains a large playing field, and since the completion of phase two of the Ad Lucem project possesses a sizeable Multi-Use Games Area. In January 2014 the planned extension to the Patterson block was complete, allowing more space for the Sixth Form and a much expanded hall.
  • The new school building has interactive whiteboards available in each classroom and many computer rooms. Every student and teacher has a unique username/password combination to access a personalized area of the network. As of 2007, every permanent teacher has a laptop provided by the school, and all registration throughout the day is controlled through a student information system.
  • There is a large hall with a temporary stage, where assemblies and some lessons take place. Larger, whole school assemblies take place in the 'Hub', a central atrium at the heart of the building. The Patterson block extension to extend the hall was completed in January 2014.[5]
  • In early 2019, the Wormestall 6th Form Block was extended with a new Wormestall Conference Room and smaller Wormestall meeting room. These rooms were designed to accommodate more exam students during exam season. The rooms also act as new meeting rooms, meaning that the 6th Form has now been able to expand into two previously meeting rooms on the ground floor of the main block, while the new rooms are used for meetings. This development has allowed the 6th form to continue to expand. These rooms are also hired out by the school.[6]
  • Each House has a separate wing, or "block", within the new building. Every House block features an area dedicated to a specific subject. Most blocks have three floors, with the exception of the Patterson block which has two. Wormestall, the Sixth Form area, has three floors, including a floor dedicated to computing and business studies, and a floor for the school's library.

The facilities are spread out as following: Curnock: English, Maths, Arts. Davis: Design and Technology, Humanities. Evers, Science, Modern Foreign Languages. Patterson: PE, Drama, Dance, Music (Including Berkshire Maestros lessons).


The school was founded in 1466 from the legacy of Henry Wormestall who set aside £12 2s 4d annually for "teching gramar scole of the whiche that toune hath grete nede".[7]

  • 1466 Male-only St. Bartholomew's Boys' Grammar School founded in a building near the junction of Pound Street and Bartholomew Street. Moved to Wormestall around 1880.
  • 1904 Female-only Newbury County Girls Grammar School founded at the Newbury Technical Institute site in Northbrook Street.
  • 1910 Female-only Newbury County Girls Grammar School moved to the Luker site on the Andover Road.
  • 1966 The school celebrates quincentenary. School Pageant attended by Agatha Christie.
  • 26 May 1972 Visit by Queen Elizabeth II, who opens Luker Hall.
  • 1975 Newbury County Girls' Grammar School and St. Bartholomew's Boys' Grammar School merge to form the present-day comprehensive school.
  • September 2002 School designated as a Business and Enterprise College – a specialist school status
  • 22 November 2010, opening of the new St. Bartholomew's School buildings for academic purposes.
  • 30 March 2011, official opening of the new St Bartholomew's School building[8]
  • 1 September 2011, St Bartholomew's School gains academy status


The alumni of St. Bartholomew's are referred to as Old Newburians.[9]

The Ad Lucem projectEdit

On 23 November 2006, St. Bartholomew's was awarded a government grant to rebuild its premises. The school was chosen ahead of three other schools in Berkshire: Kennet School, Theale Green Community School, and John O'Gaunt Community Technology College. Whilst several proposals for St. Bartholomew's were considered, the final application involved completely rebuilding the school, with access provided through Fifth Road. This application was approved by a West Berkshire Council Planning Committee on 20 February 2008.[14] The rebuild was completed in October 2010,[15] and was officially opened on 30 March 2011 by The Countess of Wessex.[16]

Ofsted inspectionsEdit

The school was last inspected by Ofsted in February 2015 and was rated 'good'.[17] A further short inspection in 2018 stated that the school continues to be rated 'good'.[18]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ GCSE results
  2. ^ Gov.Uk statistics - St Bartholomews School Retrieved 2019-6-25.
  3. ^ St Barts School History Retrieved 2019-6-25.
  4. ^ Bannerman, Lucy (1 August 2007). "State pupils gallop to glory by beating public schools at their own game". London: The Times (Online). Retrieved 13 August 2007.
  5. ^ St Barts Foyer Extension plan leaflet - Architecture Live
  6. ^ Conference Centre Extension 2019
  7. ^ The Cotswold Pages – Newbury Grammar School Archived 2005-03-10 at the Wayback Machine
  8. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 26 March 2011. Retrieved 6 May 2011.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  9. ^ Old Newburians Society
  10. ^ Fletcher, Martin. "Arron Banks: the man who bought Brexit". New Statesman. Retrieved 25 January 2017.
  11. ^ "Mrs Sue Hayman, MP Authorised Biography | Debrett's People of Today". Archived from the original on 17 June 2016. Retrieved 20 May 2016.
  12. ^ "Robert Newton Biography". Archived from the original on 22 September 2013. Retrieved 3 May 2009.
  13. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 11 October 2011. Retrieved 22 January 2012.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  14. ^ West Berkshire Council Planning Committee Decision Details on the Application to rebuild St Bartholomew's School[permanent dead link]
  15. ^ Council vote for Newbury school to get government grant to help rebuild premises Archived 2007-09-27 at the Wayback Machine,, 23 November 2006
  16. ^ [1]
  17. ^[permanent dead link]
  18. ^ [2] Retrieved 2019-6-25.

External linksEdit