Reigate Grammar, Surrey

The first foundation of the school is recorded in 1675, when Henry Smith, an alderman of London, bequeathed £150 towards the purchase of land for a “free school”.

The remainder of the money was raised locally and in 1684 the vicar of Reigate, the Rev. John Williamson, was appointed Master. The numbers in the school at that time were very small – the will of one Robert Bishop, who died in 1720, suggests that there were only “four poor boys”, although the master would also have taught other boys on a fee-paying basis, some of whom would have lodged with him as boarders.

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