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History & alumni

Welcome to the History & Alumni section of our website.

Here you can read about how the school has developed over the last 100 years, and find out about upcoming alumnae events and items of interest.

We have recently established an Alumni Relations office with the aim of developing and fostering the relationship between TGGS and our former students (and staff, hence alumni not alumnae!). We are hoping to run more frequent reunions and informal get-togethers, and to invite our inspirational alumnae community back into the school to work with us and our current students on careers events. 

If you are a former student or member of staff, we would love hear from you! Keeping in touch will allow former students to reconnect and maintain links with their peers, receive news of the school and upcoming events and hear how our campaigns will benefit future generations of students.

Email us: (, or get in touch by post or phone. 

We love to see former students at the school and would be happy to arrange an informal visit.


  • 1915

    Miss Mary Jackson appointed Headmistress

  • 1915 - April

    Official opening of Torquay Girls' Secondary School in Barton Road in a building shared with the Boys' School. 102 girls on the roll

  • 1917

    First Sports Day held. School houses were White, Red, Blue and Green.

  • 1918 - September

    Opening of Preparatory Department for junior boys and girls aged between 5 and 10 years

  • 1928

    School changed its name to the Torquay Grammar School and adopted the town coat of arms as its badge

  • 1934

    Miss Jackson retired

  • 1934 - September

    Miss Caroline M. Wilkinson appointed Headmistress

  • 1935

    Green and white dresses introduced as summer uniform

  • 1936 - May

    School celebrated 21st anniversary with a picnic tea on the new site at Shiphay

  • 1936 - December

    Careers Fund inaugurated

  • 1937

    Work began on new school building at Shiphay

  • 1939 - May

    School moved to new building in Shiphay Lane

  • 1939 - July

    New building officially opened by Dame Georgiana Buller

  • 1939 - September

    TGSG welcomed 147 evacuees in Autumn term from over 100 different schools

  • 1940 - February

    TGSG has to cope with an extra 200 pupils and their own staff evacuated from Paddington & Maida Vale High School (PMVHS), London. 650 pupils in total

  • 1941

    500 TGSG pupils plus 200 PMVHS pupils in school

  • 1941 - September

    Two Shiphay church halls acquired as extra accommodation

  • 1943 - July

    PMVHS evacuees returned to London. 480 pupils in TGSG

  • 1944

    School houses of Blue, Green, Red and White were renamed as Bickleigh, Buckland, Compton, Lydford, Pomeroy and Rougemont

  • 1944 - July

    Dagenham High School group arrived with an extra 35 girls and 1 teacher

  • 1945 - January

    583 pupils in main school and 224 in Prep department - 807 total

  • 1945 -May

    Dagenham High School returned home

  • 1945 - July

    Preparatory department closed, with exception of 10 year olds who joined the main school for one year as Form 1 (13 girls and 24 boys)

  • 1945 - August

    Structural alterations to the kitchen (greatly enlarged)

  • 1946 - September

    630 pupils in main school

  • 1948

    Work begins on new 'Dining Room Hut' in the east triangle

  • 1949 - March

    New school dining room opened

  • 1949 - July

    Additional field in use temporarily

  • 1951 - September

    Store by West entrance converted into new 6th form room

  • 1954

    Lecture room converted to 6th form lab

  • 1957

    Miss Wilkinson retired

  • 1957

    Miss Margaret C. Robertson appointed Headmistress

  • 1957

    New 6th form block and biology lab built in west triangle

  • 1965

    TGSG Golden Jubilee celebrations

  • 1965 - 67

    Windows put in school corridors, including 3 stained glass windows commemorating TGSG Golden Jubilee

  • 1969

    School houses changed from 6 to 4, renamed Ansteys, Corbyn, Elbury and Redgate

  • 1969

    Miss Simpson appointed Deputy Headmistress School buildings fitted with oil central heating Two new 6th form study rooms opened off each end of library Two more stained glass windows added to corridors

  • 1971

    620 pupils Mosaic murals produced by 6th form

  • 1972

    660 pupils 6th form allowed to wear trousers to school

  • 1975

    Miss Robertson retired

  • 1976

    Dr Mavis Beal appointed Headmistress

  • 1978 - 79

    Acquisition of Shiphay Manor as Sixth Form Annexe

  • 1980

    Dr Beal retired

  • 1981

    Mrs Mary Cross appointed Headmistress

  • 1982

    New biology lab. Chemistry and physics labs refurbished

  • 1983

    Torquay Boys' Grammar School moved to Shiphay site

  • 1990

    TGSG purchased house in Tregourez, Brittany Miss Simpson, Deputy Headmistress, retired after 28 years at TGS

  • 1995

    Haystacks building opened TGSG 80th anniversary celebration

  • 1996

    Burton Sports Hall opened Mrs Cross retired

  • 1996

    Mrs Susan M Roberts appointed Head Teacher

  • 1998

    Refurbishment of second Chemistry Laboratory

  • 2001

    Environmental garden opened

  • 2002

    TGSG achieved Foundation Status

  • 2003

    New school dining room opened New all-weather pitch ready for use New building for biology lab in west triangle

  • 2004

    TGSG achieved Specialist Humanities School status Work began on new Humanities building to include new school library / Learning Resources Centre

  • 2006

    New Learning Resources Centre opened Work began on new Music/Drama building and new Sixth Form Centre

  • 2006 - July

    Mrs Roberts retired

  • 2006 - 2007

    Acting Head Teachers: Mr R Ashcroft and Mrs E Cross

  • 2007 - September

    Dr N Smith appointed Head Teacher

  • 2008

    New Drama/Music Suite and Sixth Form Centre opened

  • 2011

    TGGS becomes an Academy The school is judged "Outstanding" in all categories by Ofsted

  • 2013

    TGGS Cavanna Sports Hall opened

  • 2014

    Lecture Theatre completed

  • 2015

    Centenary celebrations including the building of Amphitheatre and Archive Expansion to 5 Form Entry with addition of new House: Cross

  • 2016

    Refurbishment of Science Lab C1

  • 2019

    Sunday Times Good Schools Guide names TGGS "South West Secondary School of the Year"

  • 2020

    Real Schools Guide names TGGS "Top School in Devon and Cornwall" COVID-19 Pandemic forces temporary closure of school and remote learning

  • 2021 - September

    Ms S Forster appointed Headteacher