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Giles Drew Author

Giles spent almost all his working life teaching in English state schools.  He retired in 2008 having spent the previous 16 years as Head Teacher of St Edward's Church of England Comprehensive School, Romford, in the London Borough of Havering.   This school was established as part of the Charity School Movement of the early 18th century, and one of Giles's retirement projects has been to research this long history and show how closely it has mirrored the development of our national system of education over 300 years. 


How did the public education system which now educates 93% of children in the UK begin?  How did it evolve so that admission to 25% of state primary and 6% of state secondary schools is still controlled by the Church of England?  Who were the politicians and other personalities, both national and local, who played decisive roles in this development?


To understand our public education system one must understand its fascinating and unlikely history.


The first part of this story, 'so excellent a Work', is now available.  It will be of interest to all those with a commitment to our system of state education, to those with an interest in the history of London and one of its frequently overlooked Boroughs, and not least to those who were educated at St Edward's Primary or Secondary School.     

Upcoming Events

Tuesday 19 November 2024 at 7.30 in Chadwell Heath Baptist Church Hall 

Giles will give an illustrated talk to the Chadwell Heath Historical Society


'The Charity Schools at Romford, 1710 - 1834'


'so excellent a Work', which covers the rise of public education in England, will be available for £10.  

Past Events

The Book Launch

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'so excellent a Work' was published at the end of November 2023.  On Saturday 20 January 2024 there was a book launch at St Edward's Church in the Market Place, Romford.  

Picture: Giles speaking at the book launch 

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