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Handford House


The wait is finally over! The new Handford House extension is complete and fully operational for the start of Advent Term 2016. The £2million extension adds a further 27 beds to the existing 44, making Handford the College’s largest House with space for up to 70 girls, and sees the House convert from Sixth Form only, to an all-through House for all yeargroups. As well as the extra beds, new bathrooms and space, the extension also provides a 120m² Common Room, with beautiful views across the South Downs to Boxhill, and a spacious, modern kitchen area.

For more information and pictures, click HERE.

The House was founded in 1986 and was named after Basil Handford, one of Lancing College’s longest serving staff members. He arrived at Lancing in 1914 as a pupil and apart from several years at Oxford University as a Hulme Scholar, remained until 1970. He taught in the school from 1927-1960 and then served as the College’s Historian and Archivist until 1979. In pride of place in our entrance hall is his piano on which he wrote the school song.

The Housemistress, Ms Anne McKane has been in post since 2010 and teaches in the English Department. There is a strong team of Tutors who guide the Handford girls and they comprise Miss Louise Gaukroger, the Assistant Housemistress and Classics teacher; Mr Tim Auty, the Head of Photography; Mr Jeremy East, a teacher of Mathematics; Mr Jim Sherrell, who teaches Economics (and who has been a Tutor in Handford for almost as long as the House has existed!); and Mrs Catherine Mole, who is Head of Economics and Business.

The girls are looked after superbly by our domestic staff Alison, Nikki and Hazel.

The House photograph above has been reproduced by kind permission of Gillman & Soame photographers and can be re-ordered by visiting or telephone 01869 328200 

Handford House: From the Archives...

Handford House was built to cater for the rising demand for Sixth Form girls’ places and received its first intake in 1985 with Miss Erica Taylor as Housemistress. ​Mrs Vanessa Bentley, whose husband had been Housemaster of Second’s, succeeded Mrs Cawte and was followed by Mrs Carol Palmer.

The House was ‘opened’ in 1986 by Lavinia, Duchess of Norfolk, Lord Lieutenant of West Sussex, in the presence of Basil Handford OL in whose honour it is named. Basil (usually known to his colleagues as ‘John’) born in 1900, the son of a clergyman from East Grinstead, was a scholar in Second’s House from 1914 to 1919, a classical scholar at Brasenose, Oxford, gaining a first in 1923 and an assistant master at Radley from 1924 to 1927, when he was head-hunted to be Sixth Form Master at Lancing. He was Housemaster of Head’s from 1928 to 1931 and of Sanderson’s from 1938 to 1958, including the evacuation.

In the 1930s he wrote the definitive and magisterial History of Lancing College. He retired in 1960, having been Second Master, but returned to teach Classics from 1962 to 1979, after which he updated the History, adding his Memoirs and established the College Archives. Perhaps his most enduring legacy is the Friends of Lancing Chapel which he helped to found in 1946 and for which he worked energetically until his death in 1991.





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