St Christopher’s School has had a range of incarnations, but throughout has provided a nurturing education in Hampstead, with a distinct emphasis on creativity.
School opens with a small class begun by an enthusiastic educationalist, Miss Roberts, based in her father’s drawing room. This developed rapidly into a preparatory school known as the Hampstead Kindergarten and School at 13 Carlingford Road under the leadership of Miss Amy Pridham, who was soon joined by a partner, Miss E G Wells. The education offered espoused the principles of Froebel and Pestalozzi
School moves to 16 Hampstead Hill Gardens
School has 35 junior boys and girls
Miss Pridham retires
Miss Wells retires; new head is Miss Violet Wright and moves to 20 Hampstead Hill Gardens
Miss Wright took over two local schools, Tremarth and Ruskin House and it was at this point that the school was named St Christopher’s . It was also in that year that 32 Belsize Lane became available; a lady called Miss Mole had run a Nursery Training College there for “the training of gentlewomen”. Miss Wright applied for a lease to the freeholders, the Church Commissioners. She was not initially successful, so made a direct appeal to the bishop of London who intervened and obtained a reversal of the Commissioners’ decision. By this point the school had 112 girls and boys.
School was recognised and Miss Wright also opened a school of domestic science at 2 Rosslyn Hill with accommodation for 8-9 boarders.
Miss Wright extended the gym to its present length and obtained the lease of 20 Lyndhurst Gardens, which became the Junior School.
Miss Wright retired and Miss Bell and Miss Manning bought the school from her. It had 19 pupils under 5, 122 aged 5 to 10, and 7 aged 11 to 15 in 1951, and later had c180 until the early 1970s. Principally a girls’ preparatory school, taking a few school boys, it encouraged parents to send their daughters to day, rather than boarding, schools. The arts, especially music, were emphasised.
Miss Manning retired and a parent, David Cohen, bought the property through his family trust and leased it to a board of governors.
The school had 164 girls aged 4 to 12
A new block was opened containing 3 classrooms and 2 music rooms. By this point the school had 215 girls aged 5 to 11.