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The History of The Russell

The Russell School’s history began over 160 years ago. The name Russell was chosen for a new village school situated in Richmond Park as Lord John Russell (Prime Minister of Great Britain) founded the school in 1851.

At that time, the Russell family was living at Pembroke Lodge. The site in Richmond Park was made available under a Royal Warrant for the education of the poor. In 1891, Lord Russell's estate and interest in the school site were transferred to the Trustees of The British and Foreign School Society which was originally formed for the advancement of education for the poor.

The newly named Petersham Russell Infant School was damaged beyond repair by enemy action in 1943. Surrey County Council provided new premises for the school to continue while a new school was built. The Orchard Junior School was opened in 1952 and the rebuilt Petersham Russell Infant School in 1954. It is these buildings that currently house The Russell School.

The Russell School was opened as a one-form entry primary school on 1st April 1980. The school was formed with the amalgamation of The Petersham Russell Infant School and The Orchard Junior School. Other buildings have also since been added to the extensive site.

We are now in the middle of an exciting new phase for the school as our whole school rebuild is complete and we begin the exciting process of designing play spaces and landscaping.   

Despite moving and changing, The Russell remains a village school at the heart of its community.