Haberdashers' Aske's School for Girls

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Haberdashers' Aske's School for Girls
Haberdashers' Aske's School for Girls School Logo.png
Haberdashers' Aske's School for Girls
Aldenham Road

, ,

United Kingdom
Coordinates Coordinates: 51°39′15″N000°18′39″W / 51.65417°N 0.31083°W / 51.65417; -0.31083
Type Independent school
Day school
MottoServe and Obey
Religious affiliation(s) Christian
Founder Robert Aske
Department for Education URN 117649 Tables
ChairmanSimon Cartmell
HeadmistressRose Hardy
Age4to 18
HousesGillett, Gilliland, Harold, Millar, Powell, Sprules
Colour(s)White, Green and Red    
PublicationThe Greenhouse
Former pupils Old Girls
Website http://www.habsgirls.org.uk/

Haberdashers' Aske's School for Girls is an independent day school in Elstree, Hertfordshire. It is often referred to as "Habs" (or "Habs Girls" to distinguish it from the neighbouring Haberdashers' Aske's Boys' School). The school was founded in 1875 by the Worshipful Company of Haberdashers, one of the Great Twelve Livery Companies of the City of London.



The plaque of the previous campus, now the Japanese School of London Japanese School in London-004.jpg
The plaque of the previous campus, now the Japanese School of London

In 1690, Robert Aske gave the Haberdashers' Company £20,000 to set up a hospital and home for 20 elderly men and a school for 20 boys at Hoxton, just north of the City of London. The school came decidedly second to the home for elderly men. There were no new boys between 1714 and 1739 because the foundation was short of funds. The Hospital was rebuilt during 1824–26 and the foundation was reorganised in 1873 when four schools were established: two at Hoxton, and two at Hatcham, New Cross in south-east London. Boys and girls were taught separately at each site. All four schools opened in 1875, the Hoxton schools offered a basic English education and the Hatcham schools covered a wider syllabus. In 1891, Hatcham Girls moved to new premises half a mile away, while Hatcham boys took over the girls’ buildings.

Early in the 20th century, new sites for the Hoxton schools were purchased in Cricklewood (always referred to as Hampstead) for the Boys and Acton for the Girls. Both these schools became Direct Grant in 1946 and then fully independent, day, fee-paying schools in 1976. The need for expansion saw the Boys’ School move again to Elstree, Hertfordshire in 1961, followed by the Girls in 1974. [1]

The previous site of the girls' school, in Acton, became the Japanese School in London. [2]

The School

School nomenclature

The Junior School ranges from Reception (known as Rainbow) to Year 6.

The Senior School is divided into the Middle School and Upper School. In the Middle School, the years are known as Lower 4, Upper 4 and Lower 5 corresponding to Years 7, 8 and 9. In the Upper School, Years 10 and 11 are known as Middle 5 and Upper 5. There are typically 5 forms in each senior year group, but the use of 6 is occasionally needed (this is dependent on the number of pupils admitted to the school each year). They are identified by variants of the letter A in different alphabets, including A, Aesc, Aleph, Aske (different it the others as it is from the founder of the school, Robert Aske’s, name) Alpha, and Ansuz, which is the additional form if a sixth one in needed.

The sixth form years (Years 12 and 13) are known as Lower Sixth and Upper Sixth.

There are also houses in the school: Powell (orange as its House colour), Millar (yellow), Gilliland (green), Sprules (red), Harold (blue), and Gillett (purple), named after the first six headmistresses of the school, respectively. Both teachers and students are placed into a house.

Admission to the School

Admission to the school is competitive. Entrance exams have to be taken and passed in order to secure a place, as well as an interview for the 11+ and 16+ candidates and parents. Years which students can enter the school are Reception (the 4+ exam is taken), Year 1 (5+), a small number at Year 3 (7+), Year 7 (11+) and Sixth Form, or Year 12 (16+). The school provides financial assistance with fees; the majority of support available from the Haberdashers' Aske's Charity helps those in most need, giving them a bursary. Scholarships are also awarded for academic or musical excellence.[ citation needed ]

Academic achievement

97% of girls achieve grades A* to B at A Level, [3] and over 99% achieve A* - B at GCSE. [3]


The current headmistress is Rose Hardy, MA.

Old Girls

Former pupils are referred to as Old Girls. Their alumni association is called Haberdashers' Aske's Old Girls' Club (HAOGC) which was created on 6 May 1904 by Headmistress, Miss Margaret Gilliland. In 2014, they celebrated their 110th anniversary at St Martin-in-the-Fields.

Notable Old Girls:

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  2. Barber, Lynn (7 June 2009). "Educating Lynn: take one". London: The Observer (8 June 2008). Retrieved 23 November 2009. "Amanda asked if I'd like to watch some of the filming, and said I should come to the Japanese School, Acton, to watch one of the classroom scenes." and "But no - the Japanese school was there and in fact turned out to be the old Haberdashers' Aske's Girls' School which we used to play at lacrosse."
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