History of St. Mary's School
We have created this page to record many of the important events that have happened at St. Mary's since it was opened in the 1960s. We have collected together photos, newspaper articles and other materials to give you a look back at our collective history. Should you be in any of the photos or can add memories to this page, please contact the school office and we will get back to you. We have arranged the information in chronological order, started with the earliest memories. We hope that you find this interesting.
Do you remember what the school looked like when it opened? Thursday 7th January 1965
We have gone right back into the archieves to find photos of what the school looked like when it was first built. How many differences can you see compared with how the school looks today?
A view of the front of school.
The old main entrance to the school.
Looking up to the school being built.
The completed school shortly after opening.
Here is an excerpt from the headteacher's log book (a daily diary that headteachers had to keep by law) for the day that the school opened.
Thursday 7th January
St. Mary's Church of England Special Agreement Secondary School opened today.
Only the classroom block and the administration wing was ready. Much equipment in the way of desks, tables etc. has not arrived.
Even the tarmac leading to the school has not been put down - I dread to think how the school floors will look by the end of today.
Obviously the school is far from ready and the opening could well have been at Easter 1965. How it seems appropraite that we should have opened at the (start) of the pantomime season!
Many wishes of good fortune. I was particularly pleased with the letter from A.D, headteacher of All Saints C.E. Secondary School, Wyke Regis.
Do you remember when the school flooded? ~ November 2006
The school sits on a hillside and above the school there are a number of farming fields. The fields had recently been ploughed and overnight there was a torrential cloudburst of rain. The mud from the fields was washed down onto the school site and collected at the doors that are now used for Year 5 pupils. The water and mud built up until the doors gave way (if you look carefully at the photos, you can see how high the water level reached). The whole of the lower ground floor (the library, Year 6 area, office area) was flooded and covered in thick, yellow/brown mud. By coincidence, all of this happened the day before the school was due to be inspected by Ofsted! Click here to go to the Daily Echo article about the mudslide.
Do you remember celebrating the 50th anniversity of the opening of St. Mary's School? ~ July 2015
The school held a special event to celebrate the opening of, what was known at the time as St. Mary's Modern School, in July 1965. As part of the event the original pupil who was chosen to present flowers to HRH Princess Margaret when she visited to open the school returned to the school.
Visitors in the form of former pupils and staff arrived in the school around lunch-time, collecting in the library to reminisce over a cup of tea and some biscuits. Then, a short time later, everyone headed to the sports' hall for an afternoon's entertainment.
The event was covered by the Daily Echo and you can read the article here.
Do you remember when we produced our own Christmas album? December 2017
The whole school was involved in producing our first ever Christmas CD album, 'Now That's What St. Mary's Call Christmas'. Each tutor group produced a separate track for the CD as well some whole school carols and a specially written version of the 12 days of Christmas. We made a special advert for the CD that you can see below.
Do you remember taking part in the Dorchester Arts Event, Apollo: One Giant Leap? Summer Term 2019
St. Mary's Middle School was lucky enough to be involved in a Dorchester wide arts event that was organised to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon Landings. The event saw all three Dorchester Middle Schools and Thomas Hardye School come together to perform a brand new musical tribute to the missions composed by Geoff Edge. The children rehearsed the songs over two terms and performed in a stunning concert at 'Moonbury' rings in Dorchester, directed by well known musician Alasdair Malloy. As part of the project we were also visited by a local artist who made space themed willow models with the children, some space science workshops where children built and fired rockets or found out about the things you need to do to train as an astronaut and a man who actually worked on the Apollo projects in the USA and designed some of the science experiments performed on the moon. The video below will tell you all about the event. Despite a last minute postponement due to a huge storm, the concert went ahead a few days later and was a truly special night.
Apollo - One Giant Leap and Moonbury Rings
Moonbury Rings was a weekend of music, art and free events in Dorchester, Dorset, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the first Moon landing, culminating in...