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Ethos, Aims & Heritage

Cheadle Hulme School is one of the leading co-educational schools in Britain. In 2005 it celebrated the 150th anniversary of its foundation with a series of reunions and special events.  From the original pupil body of six 'orphans and necessitous children', it has grown to a school of over 1400 pupils and 100 teachers. Its high standards and outstanding examination results endorse the school’s reputation for excellence, but there is more to the school than simply academic achievement. It possesses a unique culture which reflects the original aims and ideals of its founders.

Cheadle Hulme School was originally known as The Manchester Warehousemen and Clerks’ Orphan School. It was founded by a group of Manchester businessmen whose main concern was to provide a caring environment and education for 'orphans and necessitous children'. From its inception, the School was to be 'founded and conducted on the most liberal principles and be open for the reception of both sexes'. It was, and still is, non-denominational.

The School was first established at Shaw Hall in Flixton and moved six years later to Park Place, Ardwick, in the centre of Manchester. However, it had already been decided that a new school should be built and the foundation stone of the main building was laid in 1867. The School moved to its present site two years later.

Development has been a constant theme in the School’s history. Resources have been enhanced from the earliest days. The Holden Hall was built in 1882, and the magnificent neo-gothic main building was extended at the turn of the century. The School’s extensive grounds and playing fields were acquired in the same era, and in 1911 the swimming pool was built.

Until 1920, the School continued to be a solely charitable institution. Donations from industry and commerce in Manchester and the North West funded improvements. Grant-aided status, and the long tenure of T.T.R Lockhart as Headmaster, allowed enlargement and the ability to adapt to changing educational needs and a more modern curriculum to develop.

By the 1950s and 1960s, Cheadle Hulme School had become a major direct-grant Grammar School and one of the few which was co-educational.

In 1976 the School became independent, when the Direct Grant Scheme was abolished. The challenge of managing the School on business principles while remaining true to the ideals of its founders and benefactors has been met with enthusiasm. The physical resources of the School have been developed more swiftly than ever before. Academic standards and extra-curricular opportunities have improved rapidly and extensively. At the same time the original Foundation Scheme and initially the Assisted Places Scheme, and now the School’s own bursary scheme, has enabled children from less fortunate circumstances to be a part of the community of Cheadle Hulme School.

To purchase 'Heads and Tales'
Copies of the book can be purchased for £15, all proceeds of which go to the Bursary Fund. Please contact the Development Office for more information.