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Queen Elizabeth's High School - Wikipedia

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Queen Elizabeth's High School

The school crest

Morton Terrace





DN21 2ST


Coordinates53°24′38″N 0°46′39″W / 53.410664°N 0.777519°WCoordinates: 53°24′38″N 0°46′39″W / 53.410664°N 0.777519°WTypeCommunity grammar schoolMotto Tradition, Achievement, Opportunity Established1589; 432 years ago

1983 (merger)FounderSir Robert SomerscaleLocal authorityLincolnshireDepartment for Education URN120655 TablesOfstedReportsChairman of the GovernorsD. S. Holmes[citation needed]HeadmasterRick Eastham[citation needed]Staffc. 100 teaching, 28 supportGenderCo-educational[1]Age11 to 18[1]Enrolmentc. 1200HousesAusten, Brunel, Churchill, Darwin, Elgar and ScottColour(s)  Red (Elgar),   Gold (Austen),   Blue (Churchill),   Purple (Brunel),  Silver (Scott),   Green (Darwin),PublicationThe Q.E. NewsFormer PupilsOld GaniansWebsite

Queen Elizabeth's High School is a mixed grammar school in Gainsborough, Lincolnshire, England. The school, established in 1983, but with a timeline to 1589, is an amalgamation of the previous Gainsborough High School and Queen Elizabeth's Grammar School.


Although the details are unclear, Gainsborough appears[to whom?] to have had a small grammar school from the 15th century provided by the local clergy, where possibly several of the Pilgrim Fathers received their early education; among its alumni was John Robinson. Lessons were first held in a room above the porch of the original All Saints church. Many of the school's early records were lost during the reign of Charles I, owing to the prominent Puritan sympathies of many associated with the school who sought to avoid detection, and so had the incriminating records destroyed.[citation needed]

In 1589 Queen Elizabeth I granted a charter to Sir Robert Somerscale to establish Queen Elizabeth's Grammar School for boys, with the express purpose of providing an education in the classics and divinity for the sons of the emerging middle class in the town. In 1828, the Chartist poet Thomas Cooper sought to set up a rival grammar school, but failed, and saw his school absorbed by Queen Elizabeth's Grammar School.[citation needed]

From 1795 until 1940 Queen Elizabeth's Grammar School was located on Cox's Hill, at what is now the Hickman Hill Hotel. An equivalent grammar school for girls, Gainsborough High School, was founded in 1920. In 1940 both schools moved to the present Morton Terrace site, on which the local technical college was also based. Under the Tripartite System they became fully state grammar schools, having been fee-paying before then. The schools merged to form Queen Elizabeth's High School in 1982.[2] Before amalgamation Queen Elizabeth's Grammar School had 4 houses: Cox (red), Elliott (white), Hickman (Blue) and Marshall (green).

On 7 December 2012, the school was host to the BBC Radio 4 show 'Any Questions?', which was held in the Upper School Hall.[3]

In 2013, following a lack of funding which affected most Grammar Schools, a £2 million grant from the Local Authority and a £500,000 grant from central government was given in order to expand and renovate the school. This enabled the construction of a new sports hall, a two-storey teaching block and the refurbishment of College House.[4][5]

On 7 March 2014 the Sixth Form Centre was relocated to the 1872-built College House building, as the previous centre had become crowded[6] College House has currently fallen into disrepair following the amalgamation with Gainsborough High School of which it had been part, and is yet to be fully restored to a state in which it is adequate for the functions of which the school would like to use it for.[7][8]

School structure[edit]

Each year is divided into six forms.

The sixth-form generally contains approximately 125 pupils and is divided into six smaller forms. There are six houses named after notable Britons: Austen, Brunel, Churchill, Darwin, Elgar and Scott. The houses compete in sporting events as well as art and music competitions.

Before 2008 the houses were Frobisher, Drake, Raleigh and Grenville. After 2008 form rooms were moved into house blocks instead of year blocks to promote the new house system, and aimed to mix the year groups together to strengthen house community.


The school annually admits 180 students into Year 7 and 125 into Year 12; around 1000 students make up the lower school (of those aged 11-16) and another 250 make up the sixth-form (16-18). Approximately 700 of those attending are girls and 500 are boys. A number of external pupils are also admitted to the sixth-form each year.[citation needed]


Pupils at Queen Elizabeth's High School usually take ten or eleven GCSE examinations in Year Eleven, and dependent on satisfactory grades can enter the sixth-form to take four A-Level qualifications.

Members of Queen Elizabeth's High School and Gainsborough Choral Society perform in an annual Christmas carol concert, "Carols for All." Phillip Ainsworth (previous Head of Music) conducts.

Music is historically important to QEHS, with the Anglican choral composer W. Stanley Vann being head of Music during the 1930s. Recent drama productions have included Return to the Forbidden Planet, Godspell and Disco Inferno.[citation needed]


Cricket, rugby, football, and athletics are the main boys' sports, and hockey, netball, tennis and athletics the main girls' sports.

Inter-school matches are played against other grammar schools in Lincolnshire, and a few public schools and secondary modern schools.

Debating teams have won local competitions, including the Youth Speaks Competition, and have competed in a national competition.[9]

Awards and recognition[edit]

An Ofsted inspection in 2008 described the school as "outstanding".[10] League tables for Lincolnshire released by the BBC rate Queen Elizabeth's High School overall 10th: ratings based on English Baccalaureate results place the school joint ninth, for A/AS-level points per pupil third, and adjusted for Value Added nineteenth.[11] The BBC A-Level league tables rank the school second best in Lincolnshire.[citation needed]

Old Gainians[edit]

Former pupils are known as Old Gainians (O.G.s).

Academia and science[edit]


Public Service[edit]



See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "The Queen Elizabeth's High School, Gainsborough". Get information about schools. Gov.UK. Retrieved 31 March 2021.
  2. ^ "GAINSBOROUGH QUEEN ELIZABETH'S GRAMMAR SCHOOL". Lincs to the Past. Retrieved 18 June 2020.
  3. ^ BBC iPlayer - Any Questions?: Queen Elizabeth High School, Gainsborough Archived 11 January 2013 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ "House of Commons Hansard Debates for 13 Jan 2015 (pt 0001)". Archived from the original on 11 March 2018. Retrieved 19 April 2016.
  5. ^ "Gainsborough: New building opens at QEHS". Archived from the original on 22 August 2016. Retrieved 19 April 2016.
  6. ^ "VIDEO: Ex-pupil of Queen Elizabeth's High School officially opens newly renovated College House". Archived from the original on 22 August 2016. Retrieved 19 April 2016.
  7. ^ "'Unfit' school has £2.5m makeover". Lincolnshire Echo. Retrieved 19 April 2016.
  8. ^ Council, Lincolnshire County. "North Sandsfield House, now College House at Queen Elizabeth's High School, Gainsborough|Lincs to the Past". Archived from the original on 27 April 2016. Retrieved 19 April 2016.
  9. ^ "This is Lincolnshire - Students speaking up on issues that matter". This is Lincolnshire. Archived from the original on 12 June 2012. Retrieved 2 July 2010.
  10. ^ "The Queen Elizabeth's High School, Gainsborough". Ofsted. Archived from the original on 8 November 2011. Retrieved 25 February 2012.
  11. ^ "Secondary school league tables in Lincolnshire". BBC. Archived from the original on 23 February 2012. Retrieved 25 February 2012.
  12. ^ "Brian J. L. Berry, Dean" Archived 28 April 2016 at the Wayback Machine; University of Texas at Dallas. Retrieved 27 June 2012
  13. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 14 September 2018. Retrieved 20 June 2019.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  14. ^ "Stanley Vann" Archived 15 January 2016 at the Wayback Machine; The Telegraph, 1 April 2010. Retrieved 27 June 2012
  15. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 23 June 2018. Retrieved 20 June 2019.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  16. ^ Gordon, Alexander; "Knollys, Hanserd"; Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900, Volume 31

External links[edit]