The Ramsden School for Boys 
This is our tribute to a former local school. ‘Ramsden Boys’, at one time was the largest secondary/comprehensive state school in the  Orpington District and for over a decade over 1200 boys were attending the school each academic year. 
After the 2nd World War there was an urgent need for housing. Orpington had already been expanding at pace in the 1920s and  1930s and the war years only interrupted an existing huge wave of new local authority and private housing developments that were to  continue into the 1950s and 1960s. Priority for the Orpington Urban District Council (ODUC) was the continual development of local or  ‘Council Housing’ for all. Many estates had been previously built in the district but one of the biggest was to be the ‘Ramsden Estate’.  Designed in the very early 1950s the estate took advantage of excess farmland becoming available to the council in the south-eastern  area of the town. The OUDC town planners started work on a plan to gradually develop the estate in phases. The first phase  (Ramsden Road, Brow Crescent, Petten Grove, Dyke Drive, Tintagel Road, Westbrook Drive, Brow Close and parts of  Quilter Road  and Rye Crescent) was in place by the early 1950s. Ramsden Primary, Ramsden Secondary School for Girls and Ramsden School for  Boys were also built in this phase. The two secondary schools were designed with shared playing fields which formed an ‘island of  green’ surrounded by the suburban sprawl of the private and council built residential properties. As the 1960s came, more housing  was required and planned by the OUDC. As the LBB took over the OUDC, plans changed from building more houses to high and  medium rise flats & maisonettes, mainly located in the middle and to the edge of the estate. As part of the development of the estate, work on the building of The Ramsden School for Boys started in 1956. The land was  amongst the oldest in the district to be fully developed and this attracted a lot of archaeological interest at the time and it wasn’t long  before Deneholes, Iron Age and Prehistoric artefacts were being found. In fact an iron age farmstead was found under the land being  developed for the school. Some of these are displayed in the Bromley Museum at the Priory in Orpington.  The ‘Ramsden Boys School’ opened in 1959.  The school’s ‘catchment’ grew with the thriving occupancy of local housing and other developments in the late 1950s and early 1960s.  The school quickly needed to be expanded to cater for the demand so in 1962 a Technology and Art Block was built. In 1974 the  school expanded again and a large annexe was built to cater for science, humanities, music and a library was opened for the autumn  term. The school was the ‘catchment school’ for the local council estate and as a secondary modern and then comprehensive, it catered for  all children of all abilities. As such Ramsden Boys was well invested in and boasted purpose built technology facilities for Craft, Design  and Technology. There was a language laboratory, music rooms, a technical drawing studio, a building studies area, motor vehicle  studies workshop. The school had a suspended wooden floor gymnasium, a large sports hall, tennis courts and plenty of playing  fields. A field study centre, ‘Ramfield’, in Glenavon, South Wales was purchased in the early 1980s and 1000s of pupils enjoyed many  weekends there.  From the 1970s through to the early 1980s, each form year (1-5) had 8 form groups of approximately 30 pupils. 1200 pupils were  taught at the school in any one year and this made Ramsden Boys one of the biggest single sex schools in the London Borough of  Bromley. Now to take you back down memory lane.....
Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation.
The Ramsden School for Boys Badge - A traditional heraldry shield divided into quarters. Top Left - A Five pointed Crown- Respect, Honesty, Unity, Knowledge and Love Top Right - A icon of a Rams Head and Horns, Ramsden was a big sheep farm that was the site of Ramsden Estate. Bottom Left - Tudor Rose, This commemorated Queen Elizabeth the 1st Staying at Bark Hart House. Bottom Right - The River Cray, fairly obvious. The Shield is topped by the Kent Invicta. Coloured for each House; Blue for Danes, Green for Romans, Red for Saxons and Yellow for Normans. The scroll that contains the School Motto says 'Veritus Et Virtus' which latin for 'Truth and Virtue'.
Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation.
1940: The ‘to be’ Site of the school and Ramsden Estate
1970c: Site of the school and Ramsden Estate 
The School Badge with each  ‘house’ represented by a coloured  Invicta horse. 
Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation.
School Tie 
Uniform  Black trousers, Black Blazer, white shirt, black shoes. The school tie and blazer badge were very unique.  
Lessons  Ramsden Boys pupils had to haul an array of exercise books around with them. Here are some examples from the mid to late 1980s.  
Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation.
Contact Book and School Reports  Pupils had a ‘Contact Book’ system in place for the communication between Parents, Teachers and Pupils. The contact book was  carried by pupils at all times, it contained their contact information, their lessons schedule and two pages for each school week to  capture homework details and a section for teachers and parents to exchange messages. Teachers could write ‘good’ or ‘bad’ notes  and details of detentions etc. Parents could write notes to teachers and reasons for absence etc.  ‘Good Notes’ were given as praise and totted up each week by a form tutor. The good notes could end up with an end of term letter of  congratulation and a number of those could result in the pupil being given a school prize.  Like most secondary schools, Ramsden Boys had term based progress reporting for all pupils. A ‘school report’ was always a  significant event for a pupil as it gave him details on their performance and a rating for each subject he was studying. Most  significantly it gave his parents the same information....... 
Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation.
1986 - School Report
1988 - School Report
1989 - School Report
1987 - School Report
1980’s Contact Book Cover
The following set of documents are letters to parents congratulating pupils on their achievements and the documents used at annual  prize giving ceremonies.  Click on each item to see each description when the image ‘pops up’. 
© Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. © Copyright Martin Longman Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation.
1989 - Student Profile
Click on each item to see each description when the image ‘pops up’. 
Click on each item to see each description when the image ‘pops up’. 
Sports  As mentioned above, the Boys and Girls Secondary schools used the same extensive set of sports fields. The Boys school had a  wooden sprung floored gymnasium, purpose built ‘Sports Hall’, Tennis Courts. Swimming lessons were a brisk 15 minute walk away to  the Walnuts Leisure Centre.  Here are a collection of school teams.  Click on each item to see each description when the image ‘pops up’. 
Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation.
1980s Prefect Badge
Summer 1989  We owe Martin Longman a huge gratitude of thanks and to his son Andrew for sending these pictures of the School in it’s last days of  being the ‘Boys School’.. I am sure anyone that attended the school will appreciate these and be taken back to their school days.. (it  did for me!). 
© Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman © Copyright Martin Longman
And finally..... In 1988 it was announced that the Boys and Girls School would merge to become ‘The Priory School’. This was, of course, hotly  contested. The rationale by the LBB was that catchment pupil numbers were down and on the decline. The view of some was that the  LBB wanted to cut costs and also sell the school land for development and out of the two schools, the prospect of that was far better  at the Gillmans Road site. The irony of this is that within 5-10 years of the schools ultimate demolition, catchment numbers went up  and the Priory, using the former Girl’s school buildings, had to significantly expand to accept the rising numbers....  The School closed as the Boys School at the end of the final 1989 term but wasn’t demolished until 1991. The last year (1990) of boys  who would be ‘5th Year’ or Year 11 in the new Priory School wore the Ramsden Boys School Uniform and were based in the old  school buildings. This meant approximately 150 pupils having full run on a school that was capable of 1200.  
Thank you!  There are many people to thank for the creation of this article and for sending their images, documents and memories to us. In no  particular order: Duncan Stanton, Martin and Andrew Longman, Tom Yeeles, Phil Waller, Alan Treamer, Tim Fisher, Ashley Chastney  and others.  If you have any images, documents or stories please visit the contact us page and get in touch via on-line form or email  (research@orpington-history.org) 
Teachers: There is probably a memory for everyone that attended the school reading this next section.. We have tried to list as many teachers  names as possible and what they ‘taught’... This list is not in any order or exhaustive.. If you can remember others please email them..  Mr Lane (Headmaster and Science Teacher), Mr Seed (English), Mr Pearce (Deputy Head and English Chicken), Mr Churchill (PE and  English), Mr Cook (French and Bell Ringing!), Mr Lucas (Music), Mrs Wood (Science), Mr Hughes (Head of Upper School and  Science), Mr Leicester (Head of Year and Science), Mr Jones (Head of Year and Art), Mr Hoyland (Head of CDT), Mr Childs (Art), Mr  Long (Music), Mr Reynolds (Science and Caveman), Mr Pike (Deputy Head and Science), Mr Dean (CDT), Mr Mansfield Clarke  (Motor Vehicle Studies), Mr Probin (Head of PE and Rugby XV), Mr Dyall (Humanities), Mr Robertson (Head of Year and Maths), Mr  Harding (Head of year, PE and English), Mr Manns (English), Mr J James (Technical Drawing), Mr Edwards (History), Mr Coupland  (Head of Lower School and PE), Mr Lang (PE), Mr Wilkins (PE), Mr Townend (Science), Miss Williams (Head of Year and English), Mr  Decruz (Music and French), Miss Matussi (French) Mr Lancaster (RE), Mr McQueen (PE), Mr Hughes (PE), Mr Griffiths (PE), Mr  Davies (headmaster), Mrs Oakes (English), Miss Collhoon (English), Mr Lancastle (Humanties), Mrs Lancastle (Humanties), Miss  Welch (Art), Mr Clarke (CDT), Mr Vass (Science), Mr Bridges (Maths), Miss Taylor (English), Mr Thomas (History), Mr Gosage, Mr  Bannon (English), Mr Hook, Miss Pearson (French), Mr Walters (French), Mr Steele (CDT), Mr Tuelon (Maths), Mr Hicks (CDT), Mr  Goreski (Humanities), Miss Baines (Maths), Mrs Mantura (Maths), Miss Morgan (German), Mrs Liddle (Maths), Miss Duggleby  (French), Mr Humphries (Humanities) Miss Miller (English) Mr Eaglestone (Headmaster), Mr Wooding (Headmaster), Mr. Rankin (R.I.),  Mr. Earl (T.D.)
When the school had 8 forms per year there were 7 ‘sets’ for core education (Maths, Sciences, Languages) and any GCE/GCSE  subjects lessons. The sets were labelled R A M S D E N with the first three being the top sets, S and D being the middle and E and N  being the lower.  For lessons in non core lessons (Games, PE, Art, CDT, Humanities etc) the pupils would study in their House groups.
Image Copyright Please do not take our images without asking.. We own the majority of them. If you want a copy ‘contact us’ and we can send you hi-res versions. Image Copyright Please do not take our images without asking.. We own the majority of them. If you want a copy ‘contact us’ and we can send you hi-res versions. Image Copyright Please do not take our images without asking.. We own the majority of them. If you want a copy ‘contact us’ and we can send you hi-res versions. Image Copyright Please do not take our images without asking.. We own the majority of them. If you want a copy ‘contact us’ and we can send you hi-res versions. Send us your image for this page! Take a look at the contact section....
Click on each item to see each description when the image ‘pops up’. 
School Badge in Danes House  Colours
Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission - See the Disclaimer at the bottom of each page on this website. © Copyright Orpington History Organisation.
Lessons  There were a number of subjects to learn at Ramsden Boys and most pupils got to experience the majority of what was on offer. 
Click on the Pathe image to  see ‘Schoolboys at Ramsden  Secondary Modern School  make an infusion pump to help  people with kidney problems.’  This is from 1966! 
Ramfield was the school’s field study and outdoor pursuit centre in South Wales. It is situated in the valley town of Blaenavon just outside Pontypool and most of the building dates back to the 1850's and was until the 1950's the town's infant school. Together with the adjacent junior school and the church of St Peters, the centre was very much the nucleus of a thriving community of iron workers and then coal miners. The Ramsden Boys school bought the site in the early 1980s and refitted it. Every boy was offered the chance to go and enjoy outdoor activities with fellow House members. This was also a chance to see teaching staff let their hair down a bit! Ramfield carries on and is owned by the Priory School.
This image belongs to the Priory School. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission. OHO 2013. Please do not use, copy or reproduce this image without permission. OHO 2013.