With a strong academic record, the History department creates independent thinkers capable of interrogating historical themes with rigour and intelligence.

The History department encourages all pupils to stretch themselves, to be inquisitive and to think independently. Our innovative ‘mystery’ style lessons in the first year (Fourth Form) aim to inspire curiosity and exploration.

In all year groups, we challenge pupils to connect past events to the present, and to identify common themes and trends.

All first year (Fourth Form) pupils explore the transition from the 19th to the 20th-century, as an introduction to the skills and understanding required for IGCSE. History is always a popular optional subject, and we put great emphasis on independent research and learning. Pupils have access to an extensive, up-to-date library to extend their understanding and pursue their own interests. 

At A level, pupils examine aspects of British, European and global history, and investigate areas of particular interest in greater depth. Sixth Form pupils are taught in seminar-style lessons, akin to university teaching, where they are expected to prepare ahead through reading and research. That means lessons can probe more deeply into subjects, ask difficult questions, and be guided by pupil discussion and debate. 

The History department runs some fascinating and through-provoking trips.

In the Fourth Form, all pupils have the chance to visit the battlefields of France and Belgium. Our annual Berlin trip for IGCSE pupils looks at the past and present of Germany. Every Sixth Form historian can join a trip to Russia, visiting Moscow and St Petersburg, to see for themselves the places where the 1917 revolutions developed.

Every week, Upper Sixth pupils give presentations on topics of personal interest. There are regular talks by visiting speakers, who are often published authors with significant reputations. We also host outreach events with local secondary schools in which our pupils deliver presentations and collaborative workshops: there is nothing like having to teach a subject to strengthen your understanding. 

History is a popular choice for higher education, and we support a number of ambitious university candidates every year.