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St John's Church


Our school has its roots firmly based in the attached church of St John's. In fact, our school started just here in 1794 when a building in the corner of the churchyard was allocated to the education of the "poor children of the Parish of Stanmore in accordance with the doctrines of the Church of England" thanks to overwhelming generosity of the Martin family.

The 'Present' Church was consecrated on the 16th July 1850 by the Bishop of Salisbury in the absence of the Bishop of London. The Earl of Aberdeen (Prime Minister from 1852-1855 and father of the Rector, the Honourable. Douglas Gordon) laid the foundation stone in the presence of Her Majesty Queen Adelaide. This was to be the Dowager Queen's last public appearance. The mallet used for the laying of the foundation stone can be seen below, a curiosity to Year 5 pupils on a visit to the church.


The brick church was consecrated by William Laud, Bishop of London in 1632 who, later as Archbishop of Canterbury was beheaded at the Tower of London in January 1645 for his supposed Papist sympathies.

Sir John Wolstenholme was the benefactor of the brick church and was born in 1562 and died in 1639. This important plaster cast death mask of Sir John Wolstenholme is still kept in the 'present' St John's church.


Stanmore can boast many celebrated names. Here in the churchyard is the final resting place of Sir William Gilbert, the partner of Sir Arthur Sullivan. The pair are famed for their 19th century comic operettas so popular today with choral groups around the world.

Dr Freddie Hicks shows our pupils his photograph of the coffin and coronet of the 4th Earl Of Aberdeen discovered in 1991 and the exact place where he discovered the vault. It made national news at the time. Aberdeen was an undistinguished Prime Minister from 1852 till 1855. His son, the Honourable Douglas Gordon was rector of the parish of Great Stanmore and hence the burial here in the Old Church.


The late Cliff Faulder, Verger of St John's b.1927 d.2005. Cliff was a great friend of our school for well over twenty years and an invaluable help at all the various school church services during that time. 'Rest in Peace'.

The school choir in St John's Church preparing and rehearsing for the annual Carol Service. The school has many services in the church throughout the year culminating in the Carol Service. A collection is taken at the end and the proceeds given to charity.


St John's Church in the snow

The St John's Church Website can be found at:



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