Queen to commemorate school's centenary

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Queen to commemorate school's centenary

Posted: 23/01/2007 20:27:14

Queen to commemorate King's Lynn school's centenary and building improvement project

The Queen will visit King's Lynn tomorrow (January 24) to officially commemorate the conclusion of King Edward VII High School's centenary year and mark an improvement project, which is currently taking place at the school.

The Queen will arrive at around 11am and will unveil a plaque to mark the school's centenary and the £1.2 million County Council and school funded improvement scheme*, which is due to finish in the Spring.

The project is seeing a new single story extension built at the site, which will include six new permanent classrooms for the maths department, a meeting room, an office, staff toilet, disabled toilet and store room, with four mobile classrooms being removed from the site on completion of the project.

Lisa Christensen, Norfolk County Council's Director of Children's Services and Rosalie Monbiot, Norfolk County Council's Cabinet member for Children's Services, will both be present on the day at the school which has a long royal history.

King Edward VII opened the school on November 5 1906, with the King, Queen Alexandra and other members of the Royal Family travelling by carriage and motorcar from Sandringham.

After making a speech in the main hall, the King knighted William Lancaster - a former pupil of the Lynn Grammar School, who offered to pay for a new building.

The school's link with Edward Vll goes back to the 1860s when he was Prince of Wales.

Since 1864 a gold medal has been awarded to the best scholar (today the student with the best 'A' level results) of the Lynn Grammar School, and then to a pupil from the latter formed King Edward VII High - with a board in the hall listing all the Gold Medal winners.

In most cases the student has received the medal at a private ceremony at Sandringham House, but occasionally it has been presented in school, for example in 1956 when The Queen previously visited the school to open the Biology Block.

There have been a number of royal visitors to the school previously, with the Duke of Gloucester marking the 25th anniversary of the opening of the school by unveiling a memorial bronze tablet in the hall in 1931, Queen Elizabeth visiting in 1956 to mark the fiftieth anniversary and also opening the new Biology Block, and the Duke of York officially opening the rebuilt Sports Hall in 1991 following its destruction by fire in April 1990.

Rosalie Monbiot, Cabinet member for Children's Services, Norfolk County Council, said:

"I am delighted that Her Majesty is continuing a long line of royal history in helping King Edward VII High to commemorate their centenary - and fifty years on from her last visit, and one hundred years on from when her Great Grandfather opened the school.

"I am also pleased that she will be able to help celebrate the ongoing improvement project for which the County Council has provided around £700,000 worth of funding and which will provide the school with fantastic new facilities."

Michael Douglass, Headteacher, King Edward VII High School, said:

“It is a great privilege for the school to have a visit from Her Majesty, The Queen. We are all really honoured and it will be a lasting memory of many of the children at the school.

"It is fantastic that The Queen will visit the school to mark the conclusion to our centenary year. Her Majesty visited KES in its 50th Year and we are all delighted that she will be visiting us again.

"The school's new building programme will greatly aid the environment of the school as we will be loosing old 4 mobile classrooms and gaining a new modern design permanent development. This will fit in with the Edwardian architecture of the main building and mean that our Mathematics department will be located in its own block”

*Designed by NPS Property Consultants Ltd and built by Mansell Construction Services Ltd, the work will be completed by spring 2007.

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