History of the foundation 1

A History of the Foundation

THE BEGINNING

A huge debt of gratitude is owed to one man: the Founder of Reed’s School, Reverend Dr Andrew Reed, a visionary and social reformer, ahead of his time. 

In the early 1800s, as a young Minister based in Stepney, Reed found himself holding the hand of a dying parishioner. The man’s wife had passed away and his final wish was that his two young daughters would be cared for. Reed’s own mother had been left a penniless orphan and, recalling this, he agreed to help. 

The granting of this simple wish would lead the way to a life dedicated to philanthropy, changing the futures of thousands of children over the next 200 years.  In his search to find suitable care for the girls, Reed visited many orphanages and was appalled at the circumstances he found. He believed that a better solution must exist and, with the help of a small but committed group of supporters, who all shared his vision that the poor should not surrender their dignity in the face of poverty, resolved to make it reality.

The outcome was the founding in 1813 of a charitable foundation: the London Orphan Asylum in Clapton, East London. The word ‘asylum’ was carefully chosen to signify a place of shelter, safety and education for vulnerable children. Indeed, so driven was Reed by the need for social reform, he founded several other charitable institutions including the Royal Hospital for Incurables in Putney (now the Royal Hospital for Neuro-disability), the Reedham Orphanage and the Infant Orphan Asylum in Wanstead.

FROM 1813 TO TODAY

With a move to Watford in 1871, the London Orphan Asylum charitable foundation was renamed the London Orphan School (LOS), which later became Reed’s School in the early 1940s. This heritage attests to the fact that we are not a school with a Foundation but, importantly, a Foundation with a school.

Funding this charitable foundation was a constant challenge, but Reed refused to be daunted. His resolve saw him appeal to wealthy members of the City, the gentry and the Royal Family. He knew that their patronage would bring prestige to the charity and also instil confidence in its other benefactors. This support remains today.

During World War Two, the boys were evacuated to Totnes in Devon and the girls to Towcester in Northamptonshire. In 1946, the girls moved to Dogmersfield Park in Hampshire and the boys took up residency at our present site in Cobham.

From 1813 to the late 1950s, every pupil who attended the School had lost the support of one or both parents and so was fully funded by the Foundation, receiving the education and care to transform their futures. Then, due to financial difficulties, it became necessary to take on fee-paying pupils as well, creating the thriving and successful School we are today. 

The Foundation remains central to our purpose: the challenge is to ensure we can continue to offer no less than 10% of our pupils, who come from vulnerable social backgrounds, the opportunity to change the course of their lives by raising aspirations, inspiring confidence and providing a well-rounded education.

VISIT REED'S HERITAGE SITE

VIEW OUR TIMELINE

 

The Foundation in the News

@ReedsFoundation - 9 Apr
Thoughts and deepest condolences to our wonderful patron, HM The Queen on the passing of HRH, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. https://t.co/tuObPVVanR
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@ReedsFoundation - 8 Apr
Looks great fun!
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@ReedsFoundation - 8 Apr
Applications for 11+ September 2022 entry to are now open! For more information on our bursary criteria please visit https://t.co/EevM1X5B4j . *September 2021 50% of the bursaries awarded were 100%* https://t.co/5QmSw6QVdj
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@ReedsFoundation - 1 Apr
Applications for September 2022 entry to Sixth Form are now open! For more information on our bursary criteria for Foundation places please visit https://t.co/pOkpp3Q5bO https://t.co/9FTRrE7QvR
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@ReedsFoundation - 30 Mar
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@ReedsFoundation - 26 Mar
It's days like this that remind us of how we can truly make a difference. Today, our Foundation Pastoral Manager was surprised with a handmade card signed by all the Foundation students to thank her for always being there for everyone, especially in lockdown. https://t.co/4KpVujiHg4
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@ReedsFoundation - 25 Mar
Well done to all the Foundation families who took part in the Reed's School World Tours Challenge! https://t.co/OXSpZxBE2a
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@ReedsFoundation - 23 Mar
Today we will be observing the minute silence and reflecting on the last year. We continue to be here, as always for all our Foundation families. https://t.co/gQod5KM42o
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@ReedsFoundation - 23 Mar
Pleased to see the great work of the being featured in along with an informative article highlighting how the Foundation continues to shape the ethos of . https://t.co/q96oH0bbLj
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@ReedsFoundation - 22 Mar
What an amazing young man. please do pass on our details if you feel the family would be interested in finding out more about our Foundation.
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@ReedsFoundation - 19 Mar
Love this! 😊
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@ReedsFoundation - 18 Mar
On we thought we would share this advert from 1935. Whilst we don't still provide an outfit upon leaving, we do continue to offer support to our Foundation pupils through our Old Reedonians network. https://t.co/nPNyZYa9T8
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@ReedsFoundation - 16 Mar
A number of the children we support through the Foundation are either current young carers or have been carers in the past. They are all incredible and show amazing resilience. https://t.co/TnYM0rTRXK
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@ReedsFoundation - 15 Mar
Extremely grateful for the ongoing support we receive from The Privy Purse Charitable Foundation. Every year a Foundation student receives the prestigious Royal Bursary. This photo was taken when Her Majesty The Queen, our patron visited the school in 2014. https://t.co/KrLbuPVaUm
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@ReedsFoundation - 12 Mar
The benefit of FutureCareers Seminars now being online is that we have been able to extend the reach to more students. For information on how to book this free seminar please follow the link below. https://t.co/IfzQilRJgJ
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@ReedsFoundation - 11 Mar
As a Foundation, we are committed to hosting activities for the benefit of children from local primary schools. In 2017 we became a host school for the successful sport/STEM/nutrition Programme. https://t.co/Dsxaj3t3cm
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@ReedsFoundation - 9 Mar
Such a fantastic example of a community project which is making such a difference. Well done to everyone involved in the Roehampton Community Box Scheme. We were pleased to be able to help with contributions to some of the boxes distributed. https://t.co/3eRVfiJBN9
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@ReedsFoundation - 9 Mar
Great meeting with to discuss staff training and grief counselling . Delighted to be working with this amazing charity to ensure we are meeting the needs of all bereaved children. A shared vision! https://t.co/LNIBgvUz9k
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@ReedsFoundation - 8 Mar
So lovely to hear children laughing again outside the Foundation office. https://t.co/KmQAXR8DEl
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@ReedsFoundation - 8 Mar
Our Founder Rev Andrew Reed was surrounded by many strong women in his life including his beloved sister Martha. She was instrumental in persuading her brother to push the boundaries of the social norms and support vulnerable infants and children. https://t.co/GExKazQfN2
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