The Houses


Bradbys is situated on the High Street, about three minute's walk south of Old Schools, the original School building. It was built in 1848 by The Revd H. Keary and is named after former House Master Edward Henry Bradby, a classicist and, later, Master of Haileybury.

Following closure during World War II, while it was occupied by Malvern College, Bradbys reopened as a Harrow House in 1946. Notable Old Bradbeians include the photographer and designer Cecil Beaton, the author MEF Benitz, rugby player Billy Vunipola, and Mike D’Abo, member of rock band Manfred Mann.

Dr David Earl

Educated at Beauchamp College and Durham University, David had a ten-year career in academia before joining Harrow. He has a PhD in Theoretical Chemistry from Durham, spent time in the United States doing research at Rice University and as an Assistant Professor at the University of Pittsburgh, and was a Junior Research Fellow at Oxford University. David is a keen cricketer and footballer, who has coached both sports at Harrow, including Colts A cricket and 2nd XI soccer. David teaches Physics and was a Tutor for four years in Elmfield before becoming House Master of Gayton and then Bradby's. He is married to Katherine, who previously taught Religious Studies in Gateshead and at Marlborough College, and who now works part time at Harrow in a non-teaching role. They have a young daughter, Caroline.


Druries is situated on the High Street, next to Old Schools (the original School building) and opposite The Head Master's. Established in the 1790s, it was Harrow's first “large” Boarding House but, today, is the smallest, despite several extensions to the building.

Its name derives from the second and third House Masters, Henry and Ben Drury, who ran the House as father and son from 1806 to 1863.

Notable Old Drurieans include the poet Lord Byron, former British Prime Ministers Lord Palmerston and Robert Peel, founder of the FA Charles Alcock, Victoria Cross recipients Teignmouth Melville and Montgomery Cunninghame, the Duke of Westminster, former Head of the Civil Service Lord Butler, cricketers Nick Compton and Gary Ballance - and James Bond, the ornithologist after whom Ian Fleming named his famous spy.


Mark Ridgway

Mark is a Zoology Graduate of Sheffield University. He started his career at Fettes College, before moving to his alma mater Repton, where he was Head of Biology and a House Master. He came to Harrow in 1997 as Head of Biology. During his career he  has coached most games, been an officer in the CCF and Master in Charge of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award scheme.

His interests focus around wildlife and its conservation and he is involved with a number of committees at the Zoological Society of London. He has also been Vice Chair of Relate (London North West). Mark is married to Elizabeth, who worked in the London fashion industry prior to their marriage, and they have one daughter.

Brendan McKerchar

House Master Elect (from September 2019) 

Educated at Merchiston Castle School, Brendan went on to read Biology at the University of Durham before completing his Masters at the University of Oxford, where he earned two double Blues in rugby and cricket. He has also played both of those sports for Scotland. After leaving Oxford, Brendan taught at his alma mater, where he was an Assistant House Master and Director of Rugby, and was thereafter Director of Sport at Emanuel School in London for four years. He arrived at Harrow in September 2014 to teach Biology and is currently the Assistant House Master in The Park. He has a keen interest in travel and music, and is a proud Scotsman. Brendan is married to Lindsay, who is Head of Technology and Ethical Compliance for a fashion brand.


Elmfield began its history in the High Street building now known as Bradbys Boarding House. Owing to a steep increase in boarders at the School, former House Master Henry Davidson transferred his boys to a new purpose-built residence on Grove Hill in 1893, although a fire initially delayed their occupation.

Owned originally by Mr Davidson himself, Elmfield was eventually bought by the School in 1914. In 1958, the School’s Governors agreed to build more rooms in Elmfield to meet the demand from Old Harrovians for places for their sons.

Notable Old Elmfieldians include Prince Bovaradej of Thailand; pioneer aviator Lord Moore-Brabazon; recipient of the Victoria Cross and the Military Cross Major George Findlay; Robert Joicey Dickinson (formerly of law firm Dickinson Dees); Colonel Sir Donald Hamish Cameron of Lochiel; former Lord Mayor of London Sir Peter Studd; cricketer Alastair McCorquodale; various de Rothschild sons; photographer the Earl of Lichfield; founder of Pret and itsu Julian Metcalfe; explorer Tom Avery; and singer-songwriter James Blunt.

Alastair Campbell 

Alastair is an Economics Beak. Educated at Fettes College and Edinburgh University, he spent eight years in legal practice in both Edinburgh and London, specialising in private equity. He then taught for three years at The Haberdashers’ Aske’s School in Elstree, before coming to Harrow in 2013.

A keen squash player, Alastair coaches the sport at the School, along with football and rugby. He also runs the Law and Economics Societies, and was a Tutor in The Knoll before joining Rendalls as Assistant House Master. Alastair is married to Anna, who is a professional cellist and teaches at Harrow and other London schools. They have a son.  

The Grove

In 1094, Archbishop Anselm consecrated St Mary’s Church on the highest point of the Hill; a Rectory was built soon afterwards on the site of what is now The Grove, serving as the demesne manor house of successive Archbishops of Canterbury. Between 1778 and 1784, Richard Brinsley Sheridan, the playwright and politician, occupied the house together with his wife, the celebrated Miss Linley. In 1820, S.E. Batten bought the Rectory manor and called it ‘The Grove’, establishing it as a Boarding House.

In 1833, the House burnt down (only the front façade and some of the cellars remained) and was rebuilt in 1836. In 1881, E.E. Bowen (a founding member of the Football Association) became House Master. In 1900, he bought The Grove from the Batten family, bequeathing it to the School Governors when he died. Although Bowen and the School’s original intention had been to convert the House into a residence for the Head Master, economic pressures forced a change of plan. In 1915, The Grove and Church Hill House were amalgamated. In 2020, The Grove will be celebrating its 200th anniversary as a Boarding House at Harrow.

Eminent Old Grovites include England Rugby International, Maro Itoje; Richard Brinsley Sheridan; statesmen and author Sir George Otto Trevelyan; historian and academic George Macaulay Trevelyan; politician and advisor to Edward VIII during the abdication crisis Sir Walter Turner Monckton; biologist, cricketer and intelligence expert Victor Rothschild; barrister and writer Sir John Mortimer; Director of the SAS and former Commander-in-Chief of the British forces General Sir Peter De La Billière, and the diplomat Sir Jeremy Greenstock.

Chris Tolman

Chris graduated with First Class Honours in Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE) from Christ Church, Oxford. Before coming to Harrow in 2001, he worked at St Albans School for three years. In his first year, he was a non-resident Tutor in Druries and was then appointed Head of Economics in 2003. Between 2002 and 2009, he served as Assistant House Master in The Grove, and then in West Acre for three years. He has been House Master of The Grove since 2012.

Chris has also been in charge of applications to Oxford and Cambridge and has served on the School’s Academic Advisory Committee. He is a Governor at Lockers Park School and is a keen musician. At Oxford, he directed the Christ Church College Choir, sang in the choir of St John’s College and played saxophone in the Oxford University Jazz Orchestra. At Harrow, he sings bass in the Byron Consort, accompanies the School on the piano for Songs and musical productions, and regularly plays the organ for Chapel services. 

The Head Master's

The Head Master’s is situated on the High Street, in the heart of the School, with far-reaching views of central London. It is the oldest of Harrow’s 12 Boarding Houses, with a history dating back to the mid 1600s. Except for one short period, the building has always comprised the Head Master's family residence as well as The Head Master's Boarding House.

Among the House’s many distinguished former members have been British Prime Ministers Sir Winston Churchill and Sir Stanley Baldwin, Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru; the philanthropist and social reformer Anthony Ashley Cooper (7th Earl of Shaftesbury); the photographer William Henry Fox Talbot; and Field Marshal Earl Alexander of Tunis. Seven of the 19 Harrovians who have won the Victoria Cross to date were in The Head Master’s. 

Dr Stephen Harrison

Stephen graduated with First Class Honours in Pure and Applied Mathematics from The Queen’s University of Belfast. After completing a PhD in Theoretical Physics, he continued to work in academic research before taking up a post in the defence industry and then joining the Mathematics department at Harrow. Stephen has held various positions of responsibility, including Director of Studies for Harrow School Enterprises’ Easter Revision Courses, Examinations Officer and Assistant House Master of The Park.

He is passionate about all sports, particularly soccer and golf, but also rugby and cricket as well. For a number of years prior to becoming a House Master, he was Master in Charge of Soccer, during which time he coached the 1st XI team and led tours to the USA, Hong Kong and Sweden. As an experienced hill walker, he has been on many of the School’s Duke of Edinburgh's Award expeditions to the Lake District, South Downs and France. Stephen is married to Karen, who is Head of Mathematics at Orley Farm prep school. They have three children: twin sons and a daughter. 

The Knoll

The Knoll is situated just off the High Street, on Football Lane. It opened in 1870 under Reginald Bosworth Smith and moved to its current site in 1982. Lord Deedes (Cabinet Minister in the 1960s and former Editor of the Daily Telegraph) was in The Knoll, as was the philosopher and novelist Alain de Botton and the writer Simon Sebag-Montefiore.

The Knoll's motto is "Let the boy win his spurs" - as said by King Edward III of his son, Edward the Black Prince, during the battle of Crecy in 1346.

Dr Craig Owens

Educated at the University of Wales, Swansea, and Southampton University (post grad), Craig has a PhD in Solid State Chemistry. He has 15 years’ teaching experience, including at Uppingham, where he tutored in a Boarding House and was Head of Community Service and Master in charge of Soccer. Craig joined Harrow in September 2014 and was a tutor in Rendalls before becoming House Master of Gayton and then House Master at The Knoll in 2017. He is a keen sportsman, with a particular interest in soccer, and enjoys cycling, running and golf. Craig is married to Joanne, a solicitor working in the City, and they have two sons.


Lyon’s is located in Garlands Lane and is named after the School’s founder, John Lyon. It opened in 2010 as the first new House to be built at Harrow for over 100 years. Lyon's has purpose-built accommodation with large, light, airy rooms and welcoming open spaces, many of which have views of the School estate and the rest of London. In keeping with its House colour, Lyon’s is green at heart and makes full use of modern technology to limit its impact on the environment.

Nick Marchant

Nick read Electronic Engineering and Computer Science at University College London. He first worked in retail management for two years and went on to complete a PGCE in Bath. He arrived at Harrow in 1995 to teach Design and Technology and was Resident Tutor in The Grove until 1998. Nick was also an officer in the CCF, where he was in charge of the Royal Marine section. His other roles have included Head of Academic ICT, Director of Harrow’s Summer School, Chairman of the Treasures Committee and House Master of Gayton. Annually, and has worked with Harrovians on several charitable building projects, in Tanzania, Malawi and Swaziland. 

Nick has a keen interest in photography and, along with his wife Rachel, has been Harrow’s official photographer for many years. Rachel is a private music teacher and the daughter of a Harrow Master; by virtue of this fact, she is one of a handful of girls to have attended Harrow in the Sixth Form. Nick and Rachel have two children. 


The site now occupied by Moretons originally housed an inn called The Queen’s Head. In 1811, the brother and nephew of a former Head Master opened adjoining Boarding Houses on the site, before disappearing overnight in 1826, leaving enormous debts. The Revd William Oxenham, an Old Harrovian affectionately known as ‘Old Billy’, built the House that still stands today on their plot, running it for 37 years (the longest tenure of any Harrow House Master). It was a later House Master, H.E. Hutton, who named it Moretons, after distant relatives who had died young and were the last in their ancestral line. In the period around the First World War, the School Governors purchased Moretons and its neighbouring building for £7,000. The House was largely untouched during the Second World War (a large underground air-raid shelter remains in the garden today) and survived a major fire during refurbishment in the late 1980s.

Famous Old Moretonians include Thomas Baring, banker and politician; Sir Michael Culme-Seymour, Admiral and Aide-de-Camp to Queen Victoria; Edward Glynn, Bishop of Peterborough; Lord Randall Davidson, Archbishop of Canterbury; Edric Gifford, 3rd Baron Gifford VC; Horace Vachell, author; John Galsworthy, author and dramatist; Archibald MacLaren, England cricket captain; Eric Milner-White, Dean of York and Dean of King’s College, Cambridge; Sir Keith Joseph Bt, Conservative politician and Secretary of State for Education; The Rt Revd Michael Mann, Dean of Windsor; H.M. Faisal II, former King of Iraq; Timothy Bentinck, 12th Earl of Portland, actor; and James Rhodes, pianist.

Robin Martin-Jenkins

Educated at Radley College and Durham University, Robin spent 15 years as a professional cricketer with Sussex County Cricket Club. He then taught for four years at Hurstpierpoint College, near Brighton, where he tutored in a boarding house, taught Geography and Religious Studies and coached various sports. He arrived at Harrow in September 2014 as a Geography Beak, Master in Charge of Cricket and a tutor in The Head Master’s. Robin is married to Flora, a teacher of French and Spanish, and they have two young children.


Newlands opened in 1889, with Francis Marshall as House Master and seven boys on its roll. Although Boarding Houses at Harrow were traditionally named after their founding House Masters, Marshall more likely named Newlands after Newlands Valley in the Lake District, near to his family home and with a tranquility reminiscent of Harrow Park. Newlands was the first Boarding House to have electricity and this may be the reason for the House colour: a distinctive canary yellow. Although Newlands also had hot water, a tosh after eccer (i.e. a bath after games) was a privilege only for the House Fez (i.e. Captain).

Notable Old Boys include pioneer aviator Edward Teshmaker Busk; various de Rothschild sons; Danish politician Per Torben Feferspiel; Zambian politician Stewart Gore-Browne; Chief of the General Staff General Lord Guthrie of Craigiebank; author Raymond Sheffield Hamilton-Grace; anthropologist Thomas Harnett Harrisson; actors Julian Holloway, Guy Middleton, and Sir Nigel Ross Playfair; circus owners Cyril Bertram and Bernard Notley Mills; astronaut Dr Nicholas Patrick; economist Professor Arthur Cecil Pigou; physiologist and mountaineer Dr Lewis Griffith Cresswell Evan Pugh; and skier William James Riddell.

Eugene Higgins

Eugene is Senior House Master at Harrow.

Eugene read Chemistry at the University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa. He came to Harrow in 2001 to teach Mathematics, spent five years as a Tutor in Druries and, in 2006, became the Resident House Tutor. He was appointed as House Master of Newlands in 2009. He has taken boys on numerous outward-bound expeditions, including two swimming tours to South Africa and a cross-Channel swim. He has coached teams in rugby, soccer, hockey and athletics, was Master in Charge of Swimming and Water Polo and a member of the English Schools Swimming Association for many years. Eugene is also Master-in-Charge of the exchange programme for foreign students. 

The Park

The Park is one of Harrow’s older houses, founded in 1831 by the Revd William Phelps. The building, located to take advantage of the  panoramic views of London across the parkland and lake designed by Lancelot 'Capability' Brown, dates back to the 18th century. Henry Holland and John Nash were involved with its building and decoration, and an interesting architectural feature is the Coade stone lion above the Reader (i.e. library) window, facing the High Street.

Distinguished 19th-century Parkites include the poet Charles Calverley; Viceroy of India and poet Edward Bulwer-Lytton; newspaper proprietor and manuscript collector Henry Yates Thompson; Home Secretary Viscount Ridley; and the son of Prime Minister Sir Robert Peel, who was also the first Harrovian to win the Victoria Cross. The 20th-century saw Olympic athlete Guy Butler and playwright Sir Terence Rattigan in residence. During the 1940s, the Park was known as the “Scots House” under former Scottish rugby international W.H. Stevenson, House Master to King Hussein of Jordan; both he and his Parkite brother, Prince El Hassan, later sent their sons to The Park. More recently, the polar explorer Pen Hadow, the actor Benedict Cumberbatch, and founder of the Majestic Wine Warehouse Esme Johnstone have been House members. 

Ben Shaw

Ben graduated with First Class Honours in Classics from Lincoln College, Oxford. He then completed an MPhil in Philosophy at Trinity College, Cambridge, before moving to Harrow in 1999. During his time here, Ben has been Head of Classics, Senior Head of Subject, Oxbridge Co-ordinator and Director of Studies for Harrow School Enterprises’ Easter Revision Courses. He was a non-resident Tutor in The Park for seven years, during which time he directed five Park House Plays.

Previously, he was Assistant House Master at Elmfield, Examinations Officer and, for some years, a cricket and rugby coach at Colts and Yearlings level.

Earlier in his career, Ben was a professional actor and had his translation of Euripides’ Hippolytus published by Cambridge University Press. He is married and has three children. 


Built in 1853, at the very beginning of the golden age of architecture at Harrow, Rendalls was the first Boarding House built solely for the purpose of housing Harrovians. Situated centrally, just north of Speech Room and opposite the Art Schools, it was the brain-child of the Revd Frederic Rendall. Before 1912, the House was named after its various House Masters but Mr Edward Graham, the House Master at the time, decided during a particularly successful period in charge that it should be known thereafter by the name of his distinguished forebear. There have been just 12 House Masters in post since Rendalls' foundation. 

Famous Old Rendallians have included Bishop Henry Hutchinson Montgomery of Tasmania; Sir Arthur Evans, archaeologist and excavator of the Palace of Minos, Crete; General Sir Pervcival Marling VC; James, Edward and Laurence Fox, all actors; Richard Curtis, director and screenwriter; Queen’s Counsel John Steel; Michael Doughty, Queen’s Park Rangers footballer; and brothers Harry and William Glover, England rugby sevens players.

Simon Taylor

Simon studied Fine Art at Kingston University in Surrey, after which he pursued his interest in combining art practice with teaching as an Artist-in-Residence at Christ’s Hospital, Sussex. He went on to teach Art full-time and became a House-tutor and sports coach. Simon was appointed as Director of Art at Harrow in 2009 and has pursued a love of sport by coaching the 1st XI soccer team and accompanying tours to Sweden, Hong Kong and New York. He has also coached the Colts A cricket team. 

Simon continues to develop his interest in art by visiting exhibitions and museums, and in his own practice, and play a wide variety of sports. He is married to Zoe and they have two children.

West Acre

A Harrow Master named G.T. Warner bought a pair of semi-detached villas on the London Road end of the High Street in 1846, opening them as a Boarding House named West Acre the following year. In 2013, West Acre was chosen as the subject of an eight-part documentary called Harrow: A Very British School, which gave an insight into boarding life at Harrow.

Notable Old West Acreans include writer L.P. Hartley; fashion designer Charles James; member of Sir Winston Churchill’s cabinet Leo Amery; and the physicist and Nobel Prize winner John Strutt, 3rd Baron Rayleigh.

Dr John Roberts


After completing undergraduate and postgraduate Classics degrees at Newcastle University, John went on to take his PGCE at Cambridge. His teaching career began at Uppingham School, where he taught Latin, Greek and Ancient History, tutored in a Boarding House and coached First XI soccer, as well as rugby and cricket. He joined the Classics Department at Harrow in 2005, was awarded his PhD from the University of Warwick in 2013 and became Head of Classics here in 2014. John has authored the School’s Contio Latina for the last four years and has coached all three major sports at Harrow. He has been a tutor in West Acre since his arrival in 2005. John is married to Rachael and they have three children.