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The Andrews Pages Picture Gallery : Godalming, Surrey
A selection of photographs and postcards of a Surrey country town
Charterhouse School, Founder's Court & Thomas Sutton's Statue

Founder's Court, pictured above in 1912, was bounded by Saunderites on the left (initially the headmaster's house) and the old chapel on the right with the accommodation for the Gownboys joining the two. It is the front of the school buildings. The fountain in the centre of the lawn had been in place for some years by the time the picture was taken, but the area of lawn behind where the boys are standing was being prepared for the statue of Thomas Sutton, the school's founder (see below).

Whilst it isn't easy to tell how old the boys in the foreground were, one can only hope that they weren't amongst the 700 former pupils who were killed during the First World War. Others had served during the Boer war, including Lieutenant-General Robert Baden-Powell, 1st Baron Baden-Powell (1857-1941) who was at the siege of Mafeking. It was later said that he managed to get a letter out to his mother in London in which he mentions the school's Founder's Day on 12th December. B-P is said to have tried to locate another Old Carthusian in the town so they could honour both the school and "good old Thomas Sutton"[1] but he celebrated the event alone.

Charterhouse School was founded
in the City of London in 1611.

The entrance from Founder's Court, beneath a lofty tower, can be seen in the second image. The tower itself is 140 feet high and was a nesting place for owls. A. H. Tod, in the Handbook he wrote about Charterhouse in the early twentieth century, states that "the upper part of the tower contains a large cistern into which water is pumped for the supply of the school". Unfortunately, in 1896 the cistern burst and ten thousand gallons of water fell onto Gownboys and the beds and bedding had to be laid out in the court to dry in the sun[2].

The granite fountain, shown in the middle of the lawn above, was a gift from an Old Carthusian, Sir H. Seymour King[2].

Close up of the statue erected in memory of the school's founder.
Thomas Sutton (b. Knaith, Lincolnshire 1532-12 Dec 1611).

The magnificent Sutton statue, like the older school buildings, is Grade 2 listed. It was the work of W. Goscombe John[3] and was erected in the grounds to celebrate the school's tercentenary in 1911 after a fund was set up in 1910 for donations to benefit all Carthusians, and there was to be an exhibition of the school's relics at the same time[4].

There is another bronze statue, also listed today, of William Haig Brown in the grounds; this was erected outside the old Chapel in 1900 as a memorial of his work as headmaster[5].

The British Museum has a portrait of Thomas Sutton in its prints and drawings section. Although he is seated in the Museum's portrait, Sutton is depicted holding a scroll - just as he is here.

1." Founders Court, Charterhouse School, Godalming". Valentine's Series, No.72456. Registered in 1912. Card posted in 1916?. The sender was living at 11 Great George Street, Godalming.
2. "Charterhouse, Godalming". Published by F. Rogers, High Street, Godalming. Real Photographic Series, No. 17. No date. Posted on 4 Jul 1917. The card's message is not relevant to view.
Postcards in the collection of, provided by and © Ann Andrews.
Researched, written by and © Ann Andrews.
Intended for personal use only.


[1] "Tamworth Herald", 28 January 1922.

[2] Tod, A. H., M.A. (2nd Ed., Revised) (1919) "Charterhouse". Handbook to the Great Public Schools. London : George Bell and Sons Portugal St. Lincoln's Inn W.C. Cambridge: Deighton, Bell & Co New York : The MacMillan Co Bombay : A. H. Wheeler & Co.

[3] Jameson, E. M. (1937) "Charterhouse". Blackie & Son Limited, London and Glasgow.

[4] "Dorking and Leatherhead Advertiser", 20 August 1910.

[5] "Morning Post", 30 July 1900.

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Statue of the first headmaster of the Godalming School

The Charterhouse,
City of London