Collection KSS/GPF - HEADMASTER: Strand School general and policy records

Key Information

Reference code



HEADMASTER: Strand School general and policy records


  • 1875-1977 (Creation)

Level of description



7 boxes

Scope and content

General and policy files, 1875-1977, of the Headmaster of the Strand School, comprising correspondence and papers on the Civil Service Department, King's College London, including a formal agreement between King's College London and William Braginton for him to conduct classes at the College for the second class clerkship in the Civil Service, 1875, Headmaster's reports, 1898-1911, staff appointments, details on pupils, examinations, syllabus and other subjects, and removal of the girls' classes to Red Lion Square, Holborn, 1909 (Ref: KSS/GPF1); records on buildings and property, including laboratories and sports facilities, 1900-1908 (Ref: KSS/GPF2); records on staff appointments and related matters, 1892-1910, 1956-1957, 1965-1969 (Ref: KSS/GPF3); general files, including the move of the Strand School and resignation of William Braginton, 1906-1911, proposed reorganisation or closure of the school, 1956-1977, and school trips, 1960-1964 (Ref: KSS/GPF4); drafting of lesson and exam timetables and selection of subjects by pupils, 1956-1969 (Ref: KSS/GPF5); records relating to annual prize-givings, 1956-1968 (Ref: KSS/GPF6); records relating to London County Council, including recognition of and grants to the school, 1897-1913, records relating to conference of Headmasters and mistresses of LCC maintained schools, 1942-1946, and records of the LCC School Care Committee on individual pupils, 1969-1970 (Ref: KSS/GPF7); records on recognition of school, inspections by the Ministry of Education, and other matters, 1899-1913, 1956, and statistics on pupils and staff, 1957-1970 (Ref: KSS/GPF8); records relating to other outside bodies, the subjects including examinations, 1902, 1908 and undated (Ref: KSS/GPF9).

System of arrangement

The records are arranged in series as indicated.

General Information

Name of creator


Biographical history

The Strand School originated in the Evening Department of King's College London. The teaching of evening classes commenced there in 1848, but under Alfred Barry, Principal between 1868 and 1883, these were considerably extended to include several courses of an elementary or non-academic nature, including for example the Gilbart lectures on banking and evening workshop classes supported by the Clothworkers Company. In 1875 the government extended the range of the entry examination to the Civil Service and William Braginton set up private classes for those seeking entry into the lower grades. That year he suggested that a connection be established with King's College, allowing him to use rooms in the College and to benefit from its prestige. In the session 1875-1876, 172 young men were admitted and a Civil Service Department was established. At its peak in 1896-1897 it taught 1,533 young men, more than the total number of full-time academic students in King's College at that time. In 1881 agreement was reached that Braginton could also teach women aspirants for the Post Office and after a brief sojourn at Exeter Hall the women were taught in rooms of King's College School; they were to enter by the separate school entrance and be entirely cut off from King's College. In 1892 Braginton obtained permission to run a correspondence course and, more importantly, to establish day classes to prepare pupils wishing to compete for 'boy clerkships' and 'boy copyistships'. There being no more room in the College, premises were successively hired at no 4 Albion Place, Blackfriars Bridge, and then no 91A Waterloo Road. When King's College School moved to Wimbledon in 1897, the commercial school moved into the basement of King's College and became known as the Strand School. By this time the range of examinations for which pupils were prepared also included telegraph learners, excise and customs appointments, and assistant surveyorships. Braginton's pupils were very successful. In 1894 his pupils won 190 appointments out of 326 offered, in a field of 2,400 candidates. In 1895 they won 88 out of 125, in a field of 1,100. Now recognised as a high quality general commercial school, in 1900 London County Council (LCC) agreed that intermediate county scholarships could be held there. In 1905 it was also allowed to become a centre for the training of pupil teachers. In 1907, however, the Board of Education took the view that there was insufficient room for the school (then with 804 pupils) in the basement and threatened to withdraw its grants. The LCC undertook to provide new buildings in Brixton and in 1909 the government of the school was handed over to a committee on which the LCC was represented. It was a condition of the incorporation of King's College into the University of London, authorized by the King's College London Transfer Act of 1908, that the Civil Service classes for adults also be placed under separate control. Braginton agreed to make the necessary arrangements and in 1909 St George's College for women was established in Red Lion Square; St George's College for men was set up in Kingsway, numbering over a thousand students. Braginton jointly administered the two Colleges, resigning the Headmastership of the Strand School to be replaced by R B Henderson in 1910. Henderson supervised the school's move to Brixton in 1913. Strand School flourished for a number of years as a boys' grammar school and later merged with a nearby girls' school.

Conditions governing access

Files containing personal data are closed for 80 years from the date of the most recent document in the file.

Conditions governing reproduction

Copies, subject to the condition of the original, may be supplied from open material for research purposes only.

Requests to publish original material should be submitted to the Archives.

Language of material

  • English

Script of material

Finding aids

List available in reading room at King's College London Archives.

Related materials

King's College London Archives holds other records of the Strand School, c1869-1979 (Ref: KSS).

Related descriptions

Alternative identifier(s)

Genre access points

Rules and/or conventions used

Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000.


Archivist's note

Compiled by Rachel Kemsley as part of the RSLP AIM25 project. Sources: list at King's College London Archives; F J C Hearnshaw, The Centenary History of King's College London 1828-1928 (George G Harrap & Company Ltd, London, 1929).

Accession area