Noted Old Danes & Teachers - ɫ



Noted Old Danes & Teachers


Joseph Alexander Allen (1910-2001) publisher of many books, especially those on equestrian pursuits, and owner of The Horseman's Bookshop. The customers in his bookshop included George Bernard Shaw, Max Beerbohm, Compton Mackenzie, Virginia Woolf and Lady Ottoline Morrell.  The shop was opposite the Royal Mews and members of the Royal family would often send an equerry across with their orders. He also published Lawrence Durrell's first collection of poetry.  

Ben Levene, born Gerald Philip Leven (1938-2010), was a talented artist.

Michael Baldwin (1931 - 2014) was a teacher at St Clement Danes Grammar School for Boys in the 1950s.  He went on to become an acclaimed poet and novelist and to play an important part in founding and developing the Arvon Foundation, a creative writing venture.  He served as  Arvon committee chairman, fundraiser and course tutor.

Andrew Wynford Davies (1936-) was a teacher at St Clement Danes Grammar School for Boys from 1958-61.  He went on to write screenplays and novels and is best known for 'Marmalade Atkins' and 'A Very Peculiar Practice'. He also adapted 'Vanity Fair' and 'Sense and Sensibility', and more recently wrote the TV adaptation of 'War and Peace', 'Mr Selfridge', 'House of Cards' and the screenplay for the film, 'Bridget Jones's Diary'. He was made a BAFTA Fellow in 2002.

John Oswald Francis  (1880 - 1956)  taught at the school  before the First World War.  He began writing plays in 1910 and is regarded as one of Wales' finest dramatists. His best work is considered to be 'Change' of 1913, a play about life in the industrial valleys of South Wales which won the Howard De Walden prize. He also published a collection of essays and a history of the University of Wales, Aberystwyth.  

Madani Younis  theatre director. He attended St Clement Danes between 1990 and 1997 and was Head Boy during his last year at the school. Took over as artistic director of the Bush Theatre in 2012. Acclaimed by The Sunday Times Culture magazine as the "brightest talent" in January 2016.


Sir John Barbirolli (1899-1970) conductor and cellist is remembered for helping to save the Hallé Orchestra in Manchester from dissolution in 1943. The school has named its Barbirolli Hall in his honour.

Andy Fraser (1952-2015) guitarist and vocalist for rock band Free who are famous for their song ‘All Right Now’. The bass line he wrote and played for All Right Now is widely regarded as one of the best ever written.

Glen Matlock (1956-) guitarist for the Sex Pistols. The Sex Pistols were an English Punk group in the 70s and helped initiate the Punk Movement.

Mikey Craig (1960-) bass player for the Culture Club and in 1988 he also released a single called ‘I’m a Believer ‘. Culture Club was popular in the 80s and one of their albums sold more than 10 million copies worldwide.

Alan Wilder (1959-) keyboard player for Depeche Mode. Depeche Mode was an English synthpop band of the 80s and is still around now.

Natasha Khan (1979-) singer and musician known as Bat For Lashes. She has released 3 albums and received Mercury Prize nominations for two of her albums.

William (Bill) Ashton OBE (1936-) was a teacher at St Clement Danes Grammar School for Boys during the early 1970s.  He is a British saxophonist and composer, best known for co-founding the London Schools’ Orchestra, now the National Youth Jazz Orchestra.

Lewis Foreman was a contemporary of Frank Field (see below) and is an acclaimed biographer in the world of music. In addition to writing the definitive biography of Arnold Bax, A Composer and his Times, he has also written books on Havergill Brian and Arthur Bliss, as well as several other titles.

Richard Keith Lewis, better known as Cass Lewis, (1960-) attended St Clement Danes Grammar School for Boys in the early 1970s.  He is best known as the bassist, co-songwriter and co-producer of multi-million selling UK rock band Skunk Anansie.

Jack Garratt (1991-) singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. Attended St Clement Danes between 2003 and 2010. Won Critics' Choice Brit Award in 2016, the same year his debut album 'Phase' was released.


Dennis Potter (1935-1994) television playwright, director and novelist. He is, perhaps, best remembered for his BBC TV serial ‘The Singing Detective’. In 1998 Humphrey Carpenter's authorised biography of Dennis Potter was published, in which the school and members of staff were mentioned.

John Slater (1916-1975) was a familiar face in British films of the 1940s and appeared in many classic films of the period.

Callum McDougall  has been Executive Film Producer on numerous 007 films including Casino Royale (2006), Quantum of Solace(2008) and Skyfall (2012).  Attended ɫ from 1976 until 1979.

Tim Lovejoy (1968-) is a British television presenter most famous for hosting Saturday morning football programme Soccer AM.  He currently presents Sunday Brunch on Channel 4.

Michael Oliver (1937 - 2002) was a BBC broadcaster, writer and journalist on classical music. He presented BBC Radio 3's 'Music Weekly' programme (1975–90), and also was a presenter of BBC Radio 4's 'Kaleidoscope' (1974–87).

Dino Mahoney attended ɫ in the 1960s.  He worked as a presenter and writer for Radio Television Hong Kong for many years and is now an established playwright.  His radio plays have been broadcast on the BBC World Service and BBC Radio 4.


Katy Brand (1979-) an English actress, comedian and writer, known for her ITV2 series Katy Brand's Big Ass Show and for Comedy Lab Slap on Channel 4.

Jack Rooke is a comedian, performance poet and radio presenter. He attended St Clement Danes between 2004 and 2011. He won plaudits for his show 'Good Grief' at the Edinburgh Festival in 2015 and rave reviews at the Soho Theatre in 2016. The resident expert on grief and bereavement on Radio 1's 'The Surgery'.


Geoffrey Davies (1923-2008) developed pacemakers with Dr Aubrey Leatham – these pacemakers were the grounds for the lifesaving pacemakers that doctors use every day.

Alvin Nienow was a Professor of Biochemical Engineering from 1989 to 2004 at the University of Birmingham and Director from 1989 to 2000 for the Centre of Biochemical Engineering.

Michael Ward (1939-2008) was a British economist and statistician who developed the international economic statistics.

Graham Morgan attended ɫ in the 1960s.  He is a radiology professor and has written various noted medical publications.

Tom Duncan  (1922 - 2007)  was one of the most influential school textbook authors of the second half of the 20th century. He taught physics at ɫ and several other schools after the war and was then appointed lecturer in physics education at the University of Liverpool. He wrote more than 20 books on physics and electronics which were translated into into numerous languages and achieved worldwide sales of millions of copies. 

Dr Geoffrey Pollard  (1936 - 1993) was Senior Lecturer and Dean of the Faculty of Applied Science at the University of Leeds and also spent time working for The British Council teaching in Sri Lanka and South Korea. He published many technical and academic papers on metallurgy.   

Harvey Indyk  who left the school in 1967 has been made an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to analytical chemistry and the dairy industry in the recent New Years Honours list. Over a 40 year career as a chemist in the dairy industry in New Zealand he has developed techniques ensuring that dairy products are safe and meet regulations.


Walter ‘Wally’ Downes (1961-) is a former football player, manager and coach. He was most recently first team coach with West Ham United before leaving this post in December 2012.

Hugh Murray Lindsay (1938-) is a former amateur footballer who played as an inside-forward for Great Britain in the 1960 Summer Olympics held in Rome, as well as making two Football League appearances for Southampton in 1961.

Denise ‘Dee’ Caffari (1973-) is a British sailor who, in 2006, became the first woman to sail single-handedly and non-stop around the world ‘the wrong way’: westward against the prevailing winds and currents.   In February 2009, she completed the Vendee Globe race and set a new record to become the first woman to sail solo, non-stop, around the world in both directions.

Rob Kiernan (1991-) is a footballer who currently plays for Glasgow Rangers. He previously played for Wigan Athletic and Watford, and spent time on loan at Kilmarnock, Yeovil Town, Bradford City and Wycombe Wanderers. He has captained the Republic of Ireland national football team at under-19 level and under-21 levels.

Leroy ‘Lee’ Canoville (1981-) is a professional footballer, who plays for United Counties League side Spalding United. He joined Arsenal as an apprentice in the summer of 1997 from the FA School at Lilleshall, turning professional in August 2000.

John Jackson (1942-) is a former footballer who made 656 appearances in the Football League playing as a goalkeeper for Crystal Palace, Leyton Orient, Millwall, Ipswich Town and Hereford United.

Alan Inns (1948-) rowed for Great Britain and was a coxswain on the National Rowing Team in his 20s and 30s.  He is a coach at Tideway Scullers and Leander in Chiswick and continues to develop and coach rowing talent.

John Pritchard (1957-) is a British rower who competed in two Olympic Games, winning a silver medal with the British eight at the 1980 Summer Olympics.  After leaving ɫ in 1975, he studied Law at Cambridge University and rowed in the Oxford v Cambridge Boat Race three times.  In 1984, the Cambridge boat in which he rowed famously sank after hitting a barge.   

John Tierney attended ɫ from 1961-8.  A keen rower from the age of 13, he went on to be Team Leader and Coach for the US Rowing Team from 1986 to 1992 during which time he rowed at the Pan Am Games (1991) and the Barcelona Olympics (1992).  Mr Tierney is a Professor of Chemistry in the USA.

Jimmy Gitsham attended ɫ from 1953-8. He was a footballer who played left back for Brentford FC between 1961 and 1963.

Philippa Lowe attended ɫ as a student and then as a trainee PE teacher. In March 2016, she debuted for Great Britain in the European Indoor Athletics Championships in Belgrade. Running the second leg in the 4x400m, she was a member of the team which won the silver medal.


Graham Hobson co-founded Photobox, the UK's number one on-line digital photo printing company in 2000 and acquired in 2011.  He attended ɫ from 1976 to 1983.


Frank Field (1942-) has been a Labour Party Member of Parliament for Birkenhead since 1979.  After Labour's defeat in the 2010 election, he was given the role of ‘poverty czar’ in David Cameron's coalition government.

David Stoddart (1928-) was the Labour Party Member of Parliament for Swindon from 1970 to 1983, when he lost his seat to a Conservative Party candidate.  He is now an independent Labour policitican.  He was raised to a life peer in 1983 as Baron Stoddart of Swindon. 

Gareth Lodwig Wardell (1944-) taught Economics at St Clement Danes Grammar School for Boys in London in the late 1960s.  He is a former Member of Parliament for Gower after winning the 1982 by-election.  He held the seat until he stood down at the 1997 General Election.

Emma Kate Hopkins OBE is a former student.  She was appointed Her Majesty’s Ambassador to the Republic of Bulgaria, in May 2015. She received an OBE in the 2014 Queen’s Birthday Honours List for services to preventing sexual violence in conflict-affected countries overseas.  A barrister, her career in government has spanned immigration, human rights, EU, organised crime as well as violence against women. Whilst at the Home Office she developed the strategy on human trafficking and delivered it through a national and international campaign. She received the “civil servant of the year” award for outstanding contribution to public service in 2008 for this work. 

Jonathon Porritt (1950 - ) taught English at the school. He is an advisor and writer on environmental matters and a long term advocate of the Green Party.



Jonathan Davey became a QC in 2016Prior to taking silk, Jonathan served on the Attorney General’s A Panel of Counsel to the Crown, the highest of the three Crown Panels.



  • 08:51 am - 14th June, 2024 On 4-6th June, our Year 7, 8, and 9 drama students delivered a fantastic performance titled "A Read Through Time" Read more:
  • 08:48 am - 14th June, 2024 Great work by ɫ & Rickmansworth staff to get a cricket game in today with yr 10Rickmansworth made 65 first 6 off 12 overs ɫ chased down to get 68 for 2 off 7 Ben was potm with 2 wickets and 31 not out 👏
  • 02:28 pm - 13th June, 2024 We are very proud of our students that have participated in the past year. Their volunteering has had a huge impact in the local community
  • 01:24 pm - 13th June, 2024 We are incredibly proud of our fellow ɫ Alumni, Emma Victoria Payne, for designing the beautiful wedding dress for the Duke and Duchess of Westminster! Here is Emma preparing the Duchess to walk down the aisle.
  • 01:20 pm - 13th June, 2024 Excellent afternoon for our athletes today in meet 6/6Big points were needed to try to get all four teams into the County League Final U14 Girls- BetsyU14 Boys- Noah 🥇🥈U16 Girls- Abi 🥇🥇U16 Boys- Oscar 🥇🥇Huge 👍 to Betsy & Liv for stepping in as last min replacements
  • 01:59 pm - 6th June, 2024 Today we celebrate D Day. All of our students listened to an assembly commemorating those who fought for our country 80 years ago.
  • 02:36 pm - 4th June, 2024 Excellent start to the first of our June lunchtime music recitals.
  • 07:51 pm - 3rd June, 2024 Opening night is tomorrow! Have you got your tickets yet? Last few remaining…come and see ɫ’s lower school talent! 7pm in the Drama Hall 4th, 5th & 6th June
  • 07:03 pm - 15th May, 2024 Tickets are on sale for the lower school show, featuring students from Year 7-9 and directed by Ms Smart showcasing some of ɫ’s outstanding talent!
  • 10:17 am - 15th May, 2024 Year 12 Drama & Art students attending a Careers workshop today
  • 12:15 pm - 22nd March, 2024 All groups out and enjoying the view! Avoiding the rain for now.
  • 11:01 am - 22nd March, 2024 All groups out and enjoying the view! Avoiding the rain for now.