A girl sits in front of the sorting hat at the House Sorting Ceremony.

THE INAUGURAL YEAR

In September 2023, six brand new mixed-gender Houses launched. Their names derive from the six elements which make up The Blue Coat School’s crest. And each is an important part of the School’s foundation and future. 

 

Now the Prep pupils have had their traditional sorting ceremony, let the competition commence!

A girl sits in front of the sorting hat at the House Sorting Ceremony.

Lichfield House
860 POINTS

A girl sits in front of the sorting hat at the House Sorting Ceremony.

CATHEDRAL HOUSE
848 POINTS

A girl sits in front of the sorting hat at the House Sorting Ceremony.

Birmingham House
776 POINTS

A girl sits in front of the sorting hat at the House Sorting Ceremony.

Chandler House
745 POINTS

A girl sits in front of the sorting hat at the House Sorting Ceremony.

Grace House
712 POINTS

A girl sits in front of the sorting hat at the House Sorting Ceremony.

School
House

The name School House comes from the blue border of the crest which contains the title of the school, and the date of the foundation.

The leasehold terms for the School at St Philip’s stated:

‘From the 29th day of September, 1722, for the uses of a School to be built thereon, for the purpose of maintaining poor children, teaching them to read and write, and instructing them in the knowledge of the Christian religion, as professed in the Church of England and for other purposes.’

The colour blue remains synonymous with the School in Birmingham, as do the blue coats which were initially bequeathed to the first 32 pupils. These are now called ‘Best Blues’ and worn on ceremonial occasions such as Founders’ Day. 

A girl sits in front of the sorting hat at the House Sorting Ceremony.

Lichfield
House

The name Lichfield House comes from the upper white cross on the BCS crest which represents the Church and is also from the arms of Lichfield.

Birmingham came under the Lichfield Diocese until 1848.

Some of the School’s earliest benefactors and Trustees were significant figures from Lichfield who resonated with the School’s mission to educate the least fortunate children of Birmingham.

It is befitting that the white cross is situated in the heart of the crest as the Christian foundations of the School remain at the core of the School’s ethos, mission and values today.

A girl sits in front of the sorting hat at the House Sorting Ceremony.

CATHEDRAL
HOUSE

The name Cathedral House comes from the lower cross in the crest which is the symbol used to represent St. Philip.

The first requisite of the School’s foundation, to provide a suitable location, was met in November 1722, when the ‘small piece of land’ was formally leased by the Church authorities to the managing body of the proposed school. Thus, St Philip’s Church, now Cathedral, was the first location of The Blue Coat School Birmingham. 

The annual Founders’ Day Service still takes place at St Philip’s Cathedral and it is a highlight event in the School calendar.

A girl sits in front of the sorting hat at the House Sorting Ceremony.

Birmingham
House

The name Birmingham House comes from the gold and red background of the crest which is taken from the arms of the City of Birmingham.

In the early 18th century, there was appalling neglect suffered by children of the poor who did not attend school. The majority of children in the Birmingham district commenced work before the age of 9.

The illiterate condition of most of the town’s children, the lack of moral guidance available to them, and the increasing influence of nonconformist views caused sufficient concern that led to a discussion on how to tackle these problems. The proposal founded a Charity School, closely linked with the established Church.

Fast-forward 300 years, the School has relocated to Edgbaston, but it remains proud and dedicated in its venture to educate the children of Birmingham.

A girl sits in front of the sorting hat at the House Sorting Ceremony.

Chandler
House

The name Chandler House comes from the band across the badge which is for Bishop Edward Chandler, Bishop of Coventry and Lichfield in 1722.

Bishop Edward Chandler consecrated St Philip’s Church in 1715 and was the first rector.

Chandler was also one of the founder co-signatories for leading the land from St Philip’s Church.

The Bishop of the Diocese remains an important figure to the School. Previous Presidents of the School have also held the position of Bishop of Birmingham.

A girl sits in front of the sorting hat at the House Sorting Ceremony.

Grace
House

The name Grace House comes from the motto ‘Grow in Grace’ which is from the second Epistle of St. Peter, Chapter 3, Verse 18.

‘Grow in Grace’ remains to be the School’s motto to this day.

The motto is illuminated in the School Chapel in the new stained glass window.

SCHOOL LIFE

Life at Blue Coat is busy and incredibly fun. Discover what happens at School from lunch to after school clubs.

School Life