Clayesmore thoroughly enjoys its sense of history and has now been in existence for over 120 years. Founded in 1896 in Enfield by Alexander Devine, the school moved from Middlesex to Pangbourne, then on to Winchester, before acquiring Iwerne Manor and moving to Dorset in time for the summer term of 1933.

These were difficult times, though, between the wars, and Clayesmore pupils had played their part in WWI, losing some 40 old boys and winning a VC (Geoffrey Heneage Drummond in the second raid on Ostend in May 1918).

A further 40 alumni gave their lives in WWII, and at Remembrance time each November we commemorate their lives in the school Chapel, which was built in their honour in 1957.

Brief Timeline of Clayesmore and the Iwerne Minster Estate:

1878 – Main House built for 2nd Baron Wolverton, designed by Alfred Waterhouse
1896 – Clayesmore founded at Enfield by Alexander Devine
1902 – Clayesmore moved to Pangbourne Estate near Reading
1908 – Iwerne Minster estate purchased by James Ismay
1914 – Clayesmore moved to Northwood Park, near Winchester
1930 – Alexander Devine and James Ismay died
1933 – Clayesmore moved to Iwerne Minster
1956 – School Chapel dedicated
1961 – Dining Hall opened
1966 – Manor House opened
1974 – Clayesmore Prep School moved to Iwerne Minster from Charlton Marshall
1974 – Girls and day pupils admitted throughout the School
1986 – Sports Centre opened
1996 – Clayesmore celebrated its centenary – Astro-Turf pitch created
2002 – Jubilee Building opened
2005 – Spinney Centre opened
2007 – New Pre-Prep Building opened
2008 – Everett Building opened
2013 – Business School opened
2016 – Design & Technology Extension opened & Biomass installed


The School Archive documents the history of the School and records include photographs, school magazines, newsletters, registers and programmes from events.

Donations and enquiries are always welcome. Contact Sarah Kerr with any queries or telephone 01747 813177.