Elizabeth College, Guernsey

Elizabeth College, Guernsey

Infobox Secondary school
name = Elizabeth College
type = All-male
principal = Dr. Nick Argent
colour = Blue
established = 1563
motto = Semper Eadem
city = St Peter Port
state = Guernsey
colours = Blue and white
rival = Victoria College, Jersey; Guernsey Grammar School and Sixth Form Centre
country = United Kingdom
website = [http://www.elizcoll.org]
picture =

Elizabeth College is a private school in the town of St Peter Port, Guernsey.


The "School of Queen Elizabeth" was established as a grammar school between the years 1563 and 1568 by the Royal Commissioners of Elizabeth I. The first schoolmaster was Adrian Saravia, who went on to become one of the translators of the King James Version of the Bible.

Until the 19th century, the school was poorly administered, and there was frequently only a very small number of students. Then in 1823 the governor of the island established a committee to perform a full review of the school, and by 1826 there was a new staff and a more complete curriculum, and the school was in a position to attract fee-paying students from England. That year the foundation stone of a new building was laid, and the school was renamed as the Royal College of Elizabeth. The building, which remains a prominent feature of the St Peter Port skyline, was designed by John Wilson, who was also the architect of the French Halles, Castle Carey, and the former Church of St James the Less.

The entire school was evacuated during World War II to Great Hucklow in Derbyshire as a result of the occupation of the Channel Islands by Nazi Germany, and tradition says that a ghost of one of the Nazi soldiers walks the corridors at night.


Elizabeth College has traditionally been a boys-only College. In the early 1990s, the college briefly admitted female students in the sixth form in order to cover the relocation of Blanchlande school. In 1999, a Sixth Form partnership arrangement was established with Ladies' College with shared teaching of AS and A2 lessons, split across the two Colleges.

As an independent school, the majority of pupils are fee-paying; however the States of Guernsey awards scholarships annually on the basis of eleven plus results. Students of Beechwood, the primary school section of Elizabeth College, are not permitted to take the eleven plus, and therefore must be fee-paying students if they are to attend the college.

Elizabeth College is a selective school, all prospective pupils (from states schools or Beechwood) must pass the entrance exam in order to be offered a place.


The school has traditionally focussed on three major sports (football, hockey and cricket) one in each of the three terms. It has also been particularly successful in rifle shooting, supplying several members of the Athelings rifle team as well as combining with Victoria College to form the Channel Islands rifle team, that has won the Cadet National match in several recent years.


Since the 1820s, all pupils have been allocated a unique (sequential) school number. These are quoted below where known.

Victoria Cross recipients

The College has four Victoria Cross holders amongst its former pupils:
*Duncan Charles Home (665)
*John Frederick McCrea (1545)
*Lewis Stratford Tollemache Halliday (2237)
*Herbert Wallace Le Patourel (3811)

Bailiffs of Guernsey

The following Bailiffs of Guernsey were educated at Elizabeth College:
* John de Havilland Utermarck
* Thomas Godfrey Carey
* Henry Alexander Giffard
* William Carey
* Edward Chepmell Ozanne
* Havilland Walter de Sausmarez
* Arthur William Bell
* Victor Gosselin Carey
* Ambrose Sherwill
* John Loveridge
* Charles Frossard
* Geoffrey Rowland
* Matthew Renouf

Members of British Parliament

* Edward Arthur Somerset
* Malcolm Wicks


* Barry Jones, actor
* Robert Morley, actor
* Hugh Pembroke Vowles, engineer, socialist, & author
* PG Wodehouse, author


* Murray Dron, Television presenter
* Ashley Highfield


* Arthur Maurice Hocart, anthropologist
* Sir Peter le Page Renouf, Egyptologist


* Andy Priaulx, motor-racing driver
* Dale Garland, athlete
* Matthew Renouf, 4 man pursuit expert


*"Elizabeth College Register", volumes I–IV

External links

* [http://www.elizcoll.org/ Elizabeth College website]
* [http://www.oea.org.gg/ Old Elizabethan Association website]
* [http://www.museum.guernsey.net/download/Elizabeth_College.pdf History of Elizabeth College, Guernsey Museums website]

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