History of Drogheda Grammar School
Drogheda Grammar School has been providing first class education to local, national and international students for over 340 years.
Drogheda Grammar School is a co-educational, multi-denominational boarding and day school, located on Mornington Road, Drogheda, County Louth, Ireland. The school ethos states that every individual is of value and has something to contribute and the school encourages students to achieve excellence in the classroom. The school educates boys and girls for life and welcomes pupils of all religious persuasions. It appreciates the contribution that all religious denominations make to the school community.
Drogheda Grammar School was founded under Royal Charter in 1669 by Erasmus Smith (pictured) and is one of the oldest secondary schools in Ireland, now enjoying its fourth century of continuous educational service to the community. Originally a boys’ boarding school, it has now been a co-educational boarding and day school for over fifty years. The school was located in Drogheda town centre, beside St. Laurence’s Gate until 1976.
Drogheda Grammar School is owned by a company with charitable status called Drogheda Grammar School Ltd. This structure was set up in the early 1950s when a group of local people (mostly Quakers) saved the school from closure. Although the school is not a Quaker school, it is run under the Quaker principle of “every individual is of value and has something to contribute”. This philosophy is fundamental to the Mission Statement of the school.
Drogheda Grammar School is located on 18 acres in a rural setting. There are currently 241 students at the school.The campus consists of a beautiful Regency house flanked by woodland, with modern classroom and dormitory buildings and extensive playing fields.
The school has a compulsory Transition Year, during which students have the opportunity to try subjects not normally taught at secondary level and which may open them up to new career options. These subjects include horticulture, media studies, motor safety awareness, oral communication, electronics and anthropology. There are also many educational excursions with the annual trip to the outdoor activity centre in Gartan, Donegal, being one of the most popular.
The school offers a comprehensive extracurricular activities programme which includes a chess club, cooking for fun, choir, car mechanics and a wide range of sports including hockey, soccer, and rugby.
New developments in 2012
New School Building extension – 2012
In September 2012 Drogheda Grammar School students began their term in a new building thanks to an extensive extension and refurbishment programme.
The school boasts top class facilities including:
– classroom block with high tech computer room, technical drawing room, science laboratories, art and craft room, Library\Learning and Resource Centre, home economics room, music room as well as general classrooms
– 6 tennis courts
– 5 playing pitches for hockey, soccer and rugby including flood lit astro turf pitch.
– Large gymnasium with 4 badminton courts and full size basketball and volleyball courts.
– Open air swimming pool
– Separate boys’ and girls’ dormitories
– Spacious dining room
With the changes and expansion the school now has the capacity for 350 students in September 2012. Download your copy of the official launch booklet.
Mixing the old with the new – the new building includes a reflection room, featuring a stained glass
window that was originally in the old school building in Laurence’s Street.This stained glass window is called the Bole Memorial named after Bobbie Bole, a student who died at the school in 1942, and was created by the famous Harry Clarke Stained Glass Studio in the 1940s.
It was funded by donations and contributions from friends and, having been stored away since 1976, this beautiful window takes pride of place in the new building.
Among the famous past pupils educated at the school were:
John Foster, last speaker of the Irish House of Commons, the generals Taylor, Ford and Pringle KCB, Sir Thomas Brown; Henry Grattan; Archbishop Magee; Bishop Stopford; Bishop Bourke; Lord Mayo; Henry Singleton (later to become the Chief Justice of Ireland). More recently writer Derek Landy was educated here.
Are you a past pupil?
Join the schools Alumni on LinkedIn and then you will have access to the Drogheda Grammar Alumni Network group and a host of subgroups representing professional fields, geographic locations, and class years. Access to the Drogheda Grammar School Alumni Network group on LinkedIn is free and completely optional.