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History

The King Edward VI Aston Grammar School was opened in 1883. In 1911, the girls' school moved out to a new building in Handsworth and merged with two smaller Foundation schools (Summer Hill and Bath Row). The whole Aston building was then used for boys. With the departure of the girls, the Pyramus and ThisbeWall (which had previously served to separate the boys from the girls) was also removed. Aston is the only school in the Foundation that still occupies its original site. The original buildings are still in regular use, but there have been significant alterations and extensions. In 1963, the 'New Building' was opened. More recently, the school has added a sports hall and a building to house the languages departments, and has acquired the part of Frederick Road that formerly bisected the site.

The 1963 building, now known as Douglas House (after a double-fronted Victorian villa that stood on the same site), has been extended and refurbished to provide: four extra laboratories; a teaching kitchen; new classrooms for art, design technology and music; a conference room; a first aid room; and offices. The extension was named the Watcyn Thomas Wing, after a former Welsh rugby international who taught at the school for thirty-seven years. It was opened on 20 May 2008 by Bob Simpson, an Aston Old Edwardian (as former pupils are known) and governor of the school.

The school also has a school song written in the late 1800s to commemorate the stature and honour of Edward VI.

Headmasters

Aston has had only eight headmasters in 125 years:

  • John Temperley, 1883–1894
  • Ernest W Floyd, 1894–1912
  • Joseph Manton, 1913–1936
  • Leonard G Brandon, 1937–1970
  • Dennis W Hawley, 1970–1984
  • Neil W Gamble, 1985–1991
  • Peter A Christopher, 1992–2004
  • Colin Parker, 2004–present