St Hilary's Association

The St Hilary's Association (SHA) is open to any past pupil or member of staff and its main objective is to bring together those associated with St Hilary’s School.  

Our patron is the actress Ms Jenny Seagrove.  We are very proud to have such a thriving association; one reason for this may be the good friendships created during pupils' time at this school.

We warmly invite ex-pupils and their families to join the association by emailing

(It helps greatly if you can indicate the years that you attended St Hilary’s).

Memories of St Hilary's

As part of our 90th anniversary celebrations, we encouraged past pupils, parents and staff to share their memories of the school with us.  Here is a selection of what we received:

Christine, who attended the school between 1947 and 1954, sent us this:
"As I remember, the assemblies each morning were special to me.  Miss Hiorns led them, her prayers and short message were spiritual and guiding.  We sang hymns - and I was in the school choir - led by Miss Tabb who played the piano.  Here is a photo of the choir, with Miss Tabb at the piano.

Story time in Nursery - after lunch, I was asked to read to the little ones, who were lying on little camp beds covered over by a blanket.  As I read, one by one they would fall asleep!  The Nursery class was taught by Miss Knight, who also taught us needlework.  I did win the needlework cup one year.  Also my love of children remained and I trained as a sick children's nurse.

Talking in class - I think I was about 5 and we were told to be silent - I carried on talking and was told to stand in the corner with the dunce's hat on!

Greek dancing - we were taught by Miss Belairs.  In the summer, we performed on the lawn for our parents.  In the wings, we were secluded by a large weeping willow tree between scenes.

In my last term - 1954 - I was presented with the St Hilary's cup, it was such an honour.

My years at St Hilary's were the very best school years of my life, I was most happy there."

Mrs Alcock, our Head of Maths and Year 5 Tutor who has worked at St Hilary's for 25 years, shares the following:

"I seem to have had a number of incidents with birds while I have been at St Hilary's!
Shortly after I arrived at the school, The Hydestyle Wildlife Trust came to talk to the children in the hall. They had free flying birds and one landed on my head and tried to eat my hair!


More recently, while I was teaching in the now 3P classroom, a child said they could hear a bird in the cupboard behind my desk. Of course I didn't believe them and to prove it I opened the cupboard. There on the floor was a tiny bird! The window was open and I can only assume it had flown in. How long it had been there we will never know. The caretaker came to the rescue and set the bird free."

Former pupil, Denise, has sent us the following:
"I was at St. Hilary's from 1953, when my family moved to Milford near Godalming,  to 1958. I remember the prayers and singing hymns every morning. When it was your birthday, you were allowed to choose a hymn for that day. As my birthday is in December, I always chose a Christmas song. Also, we had an important Christmas carol concert every year; we practiced for months beforehand, and the parents came to hear us sing.

I can remember Miss Hiorns telling us that she had been at the top of her preparatory school, and then gone into the first form at secondary school. Then she was Head Girl  in the Sixth Form, at the top of that school, and went to the first year of University. Finally she finished at university, winning lots of prizes, and left to be "the most junior member of the faculty"  at her first job as a teacher. I think this must have been our last year, and she was preparing us for leaving; going from the top form of St Hilary's to the youngest one in secondary school.

I do have a copy of "The way of poetry" by John Drinkwater, inscribed  "July 1958. St. Hilary's School. Prize awarded to Denise Ginzler for verse speaking. L. IV", and it is precious to me. I still love reading poetry, and although I've never published, I have been writing all my life, and credit St. Hilary's with giving me a wonderful start in the love of books."


To keep up to date with all the latest School news, please search for St Hilary's School Trust on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @StHilarysSchool

A Brief History

In 1927 Miss Marjorie Hiorns founded St Hilary’s School as an independent co-educational preparatory school in Godalming, which later in 1966 became a charitable trust with a Board of Governors. The area now occupied by St Hilary’s is marked on maps as Kilcott and a chimney bears the date ‘1870'; but the earliest written records are 1878-84. In 1888 the home was owned by Robert Smith, whose son, George, the Corinthian footballer who played centre forward for England, needed the large field for practising. Today, sport continues to play an important part of school life and pupils enjoy it at play time and on Sports days. Many additions to the original house have followed over the years to support the learning that goes on and every year the school celebrates with a Hiorns Day along with Founder’s Prize Givings.

Jenny-Seagrove.jpg victoriahamilton_portrait.jpg Lucy-Parham.jpg   Andrew-Haveron.jpg    
Jenny Seagrove
Victoria Hamilton
Lucy Parham
Concert Pianist
Andrew Haveron
Concert Violinist



Lucy Prebble
David Farr
Theatre Director and Writer
Camilla Harris



St Hilary’s School, Holloway Hill, Godalming, Surrey GU7 1RZ  •  Tel: 01483 416551  •  Email:
Skype: sthilarysschoolgodalming  •   Find us on Facebook  •   Follow us on Twitter

 © St Hilary’s School 2018    |   Sitemap    |   Privacy Policy    |   Cookie Policy    |   Site by QSDesigns