the-old-green-2015

The ‘old’ Green, Greenhill, 2015.

From 1865 to 1999, the Sherborne School boarding house known as The Green occupied the former Angel Inn on Greenhill.  In 1999, the boarders moved across the road to Greenhill House which was renamed The Green.

The Angel Inn was a coaching inn, built around 1750.  On 31 August 1865, the Rev. O.W. Tancock opened the former Angel Inn as The Green, a school boarding house with 12 boarders.   In 1872, Tancock purchased the house from Messrs. Ffooks for £2200, and in 1872-1873 added a dormitory wing and studies costing £1801.  The property was sold by housemaster to housemaster until in 1929 the School Governors purchased it, with the help of Sir Edward Iliffe, for £6,300 from the Rev. W.J. Bensly.  In 1999 the building was sold to Ash Mill Developments Ltd. who converted it into flats.

The Green boarding house from 1999 (formerly Greenhill House).

The ‘new’ Green, 1999.

The ‘new’ Green in the former Greenhill House was opened as a school boarding house in September 1999 by Lord Robert Iliffe, grandson of Sir Edward Iliffe who in 1929 had helped purchase the ‘old’ Green for the School. To accommodate the new house a wing and a housemaster’s house were built in the former garden.

Greenhill House was built in the 17th century by the Eastmonts, a family of rich clothiers.  In 1722, the house was inherited by John Eastmont’s daughter, Dorothy, who was married to Carew Hervy Mildmay (1690-1784) MP of Hazlegrove, Somerset.  In 1807, the house was purchased at auction for £670 by Thomas Fooks (1775-1844), a Sherborne solicitor and School Governor. The house remained in the Fooks/Ffooks family for the next 153 years, being occupied by a number of tenants, including Major James John Loudon McAdam (1841- 1910) and the Rev. Arthur Field (Old Shirburnian).

In January 1915, Mrs McAdam, as Commandant, set up a VAD auxiliary hospital at Greenhill Court on Greenhill.  The Greenhill Hospital remained open until 10 December 1918, having by then treated 904 patients.  In May 1916, four revolving huts for the purpose of ‘open-air treatment’ were erected in the garden of Mrs McAdam’s home, Greenhill House (now The Green).  It is believed that Greenhill was the first hospital in Dorset to adopt this treatment, which was found to be particularly beneficial to patients suffering from septic wounds or gas poisoning.

In 1960, Greenhill House was acquired by the School Governors.   Bequests from the Rev. Arthur Field and from Dr Elizabeth Gourlay in memory of her brother A.B. Gourlay paid for the renovation of the building.  The garden of the house features in Horace Annesley Vachell’s novel The Other Side  (1910).

In January 1977, the Greenhill House Study Centre was opened for international students with Frank Francis as its first Warden (Principal).  By 1991 the Study Centre had outgrown Greenhill House and, thanks to a generous bequest from the Bow family, it moved down the road to Newell Grange and is today known as Sherborne International.

Former Green boys have included Jimmy Adams (Hampshire County cricketer), Anthony Berkeley Cox (crime writer who wrote under the pen names Francis Iles and Anthony Berkeley), Charlie Cox (actor who has appeared in Daredevil, Stardust and The Theory of Everything), Christopher Curwen (MI6 Chief), Nick Greenstock (England Rugby International), Charles Hudson VC (British Army Officer), Frederick Octavius Pickard-Cambridge (arachnologist, naturalist, biological illustrator), Albert Powys (architect and SPAB Secretary), Llewelyn Powys (author and journalist), William Powys (farmer), John Tallent (England Rugby International), Chris Vacher (presenter and reporter on BBC TV Points West), Philip Wayre (naturalist, film producer, founder of the Norfolk Wildlife Park and the Otter Trust).

House letter: c.

House colours: yellow and black.

House magazines: The Wilsonian, The Evergreen.

Housemasters:
1865 Osborne William Tancock (1839-1930)
1880 Thomas Ward Wilson (1849-1924)
1905 Henry Dunkin (1861-1949)
1921 William James Bensly (OS) (1874-1943)
1929 Herbert Henry Brown (1891-1963)
1936 Samuel Hey (1904-1977)
1951 Laurence Seymour May (1914-1997)
1966 Michael Richard Gratwicke Earls-Davis (OS) (1921-2016)
1975 David Oldham (1932-1988)
1984 Michael J. Cleaver
1996 Giles D. Reynolds
2008 Alistair M. Hatch (OS)
2018 Stephen K. Byrne

Online Resources:

For further information about the Sherborne School Archives please contact the School Archivist

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