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News > Memories at Hymers > Hymers College House System

Hymers College House System

Companies were originally formed in 1896

Healthy competition in life is good motivation to strive to be better, to increase enjoyment and interest.  When Hymers College first opened in 1893, rugby, or football, as the game was referred to in those early days was an important part of school life and for most of the students.  For those who didn't engage with the sport though, the school tried various ways to improve the enjoyment of it.

In 1896, it was decided to organise the school into four Companies, each with two masters, two prefects and an equal share of the best footballers in the school.  They were to be known as:

  • The Blues (Mr Gore’s Company)
  • The Reds (Mr Clarke’s Company)
  • The Buffs (Mr Sharwood Smith’s Company)
  • The Whites (Mr Coxhead’s Company)

The Hymerian 1896

In 1930, it was felt a change was needed to the system, which was becoming unmanageable as the size of the school increased and as a result, was being used less and less.  Therefore, a six-house system was introduced to create greater unity within, as the members were able to become more familiar with each other.

  • Bolton - Edward Bolton, Esq., J.P., a Governor of the College, was chiefly instrumental in making the arrangements for the building of the Memorial Hall and entered his son as the FIRST pupil on the roll when the School was opened.
  • Brandesburton - The Founder of the College, the Rev. J. Hymers, D.D., was Rector of Brandesburton, and the present Rector, at this time in 1930, was a Governor of the College.
  • Gore - The first Headmaster, who made the College what it is today, was C. H. Gore, Esq., M.A.
  • Holderness - Holderness House was the residence of the Right Hon. T. R. Ferens, P.C., J.P., who had been a Governor of the College for some years, and Holderness is the district from which many boys came.
  • Lambert - The Venerable Archdeacon J. Malet Lambert had been a Governor since the foundation of the College and Deputy-Chairman most of the time, and was also Chairman of the Hull Higher Education Committee, which had rendered such great services to Hymers College.
  • Trinity - Hymers College is situated in the Parish of Holy Trinity and the name Trinity House is well-known to Hull residents.  The three crowns in the Hymers badge, which derives from the Coat of Arms of the City of Hull, represent the Holy Trinity.

The Hymerian 1930

In 1951, twenty-one years after changing the four Companies to six Houses, it was felt that the number of Houses was too many.  Bolton and Lambert Houses were therefore removed, with the hope to increase the House competitions.

Although it was hoped that the House System, like the Company System before it, would remain over the long term, there was, however, much debate and criticism over the years to come:

The debate continued over the years and in 1961, there were calls for it to either be abolished or resuscitated, with suggestions that awarding House points should be extended beyond sporting achievements.

The last mention of the House system was made in The Hymerian 1974, calling for a decision to be made about its future:

It would seem likely that within the next year, the House System was scrapped in the Senior School.  It remained in the Junior School but it wasn't until September 2021 that it returned to the Senior School, with the re-introduction of School Sports Days.  However, the House System isn't just restricted to sports.  Students can gain points for their House through a variety of ways, including good behaviour and inter-house competitions such as the annual Band Competition and Chess Tournament.

  • Gore (Yellow)
  • Trinity (Blue)
  • Holderness (Green)
  • Brandesburton (Red)

 Good luck to all the Houses in future competitions!

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