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In the beginning... On 23 September 1880 Penrhos College was founded by Reverend Frederick Payne, who is also responsible for the building of St John’s Church. At that time Rev. Payne lived in a house called Rydal Mount (which is now Old House). Rev. Payne suggested to his friend, Thomas Osborn (who had a daughter at Penrhos), that he set up a school for boys in the town. He sold his house to Osborn, who kept the name and founded Rydal Mount School in this building in 1885. Both schools expanded over the years and much development took place as pupil numbers grew. During the Second World War, both schools were evacuated to allow the Ministry of Food to

utilise the buildings – Penrhos to Chatsworth House in Derbyshire and Rydal to Oakwood Park in Conwy. Rydal began to accept girls in 1966.

In 1995 a single Governing body for Rydal Penrhos School was launched. Initially, the Governors of Rydal Penrhos ran the School in three Divisions: the Girls’ Division (on the Penrhos site) the Coeducational Division (on the Rydal site) and the Preparatory School (at the top of Pwllycrochan Avenue). This arrangement lasted until 1999 when the Governors made the difficult decision to close the Penrhos site and combine the two Senior Divisions into one

co-educational school called Rydal Penrhos which would be based at the Rydal site.

Today Rydal Penrhos is a thriving school, however great care is taken to preserve its history and to remember its beginnings as Penrhos College and Rydal School. Photographs from both schools line the walls, and stained glass windows from the Penrhos Chapel are proudly displayed throughout the buildings. The impressive archives collection houses thousands of photographs and items of interest reaching back over the years, and continues to store more recent items for future generations to look back on.

Rev. F Payne

T Osborn

Founders’ Weekend is our chance to remember the place where we began, and allows us to honour the work of the Reverend Frederick Payne and Thomas Osborn, who made it all happen. Join us on this very special weekend, and help us to celebrate the history of Rydal Penrhos.

Founders’ Weekend Saturday 15 September 10am - 12pm:




15-16 September 2012

Refreshments in the Ferguson Centre followed by tours of the school. Explore the familiar corridors within these historic buildings, and view the magnificent stained glass windows from the Penrhos College Chapel. The tour will end with a fantastic display of archive material that has been collected over many years. ‘Old Girls’ v 1st XI hockey match

Light lunch in the Ferguson Centre

‘Old Girls’ v 1st VII netball match

(The ‘Old Girls’ matches will be played for the Natalie Moss Trophies)


Founders’ Dinner at the Castle Hotel, Conwy


Founders’ Service in the Memorial Hall followed by refreshments (Please RSVP by 24 August if you would like to attend this service)

Sunday 16 September 11.30am: 1.00pm: 3.00pm:

Official opening of our refurbished Fives courts with matches and master class sessions. Courts to be opened by the Chairman of the Eton Fives Association, Peter Worth. Rydal Vikings v North Wales President’s XV rugby match

(The Vikings match will be played for the Bleddyn Williams Trophy)


Rydal Penrhos Society Newsletter Issue 20  

Issue 20 of the Rydal Penrhos Society Newsletter