Impington: Education

A History of the County of Cambridge and the Isle of Ely: Volume 9, Chesterton, Northstowe, and Papworth Hundreds. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1989.

This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.

'Impington: Education', in A History of the County of Cambridge and the Isle of Ely: Volume 9, Chesterton, Northstowe, and Papworth Hundreds, (London, 1989) pp. 137-138. British History Online [accessed 12 April 2024]


There was no village school in Impington until the mid 19th century, but Thomas Wiborough, vicar 1639-69, kept a private school in his house after the Restoration, (fn. 1) and in 1818 some poor children were taught at Histon charity school. (fn. 2) A Sunday school was established by 1825, when 39 children attended, and by 1836 the parish clerk gave evening classes to 12 children at the expense of a local landowner. (fn. 3)

A church school was built opposite the church in 1846 to accommodate 48 pupils. (fn. 4) It had a single schoolroom with a teacher's house attached. (fn. 5) It was transferred to a school board in 1875, (fn. 6) and a new school with two classrooms was built near the Histon boundary in 1881 (fn. 7) to meet the parish's growing population. The school was closed in 1939, when the juniors were transferred to Histon and the seniors to the village college. (fn. 8) Its building housed a nursery school until demolished in 1963 when the Histon bypass was built. (fn. 9)

Impington village college, the fourth established in the county, was opened in 1939 on a site given by Chivers and Sons Ltd. in Impington Park. Chivers paid for the adult wing. The original building, designed by Walter Gropius and Maxwell Fry, has been widely admired as a pioneering example of the modern movement. The school, which became comprehensive in 1974, was frequently extended from the 1950s and in 1986 served seven parishes. (fn. 10)


  • 1. Proc. C.A.S. lxx. 168-9; Walker Revised, ed. A. G. Matthews, 88; Cambs. Episc. Visit. 1638-65, ed. Palmer, 113.
  • 2. Educ. of Poor Digest, 61.
  • 3. C.U.L., E.D.R., C 1/6; C 3/21; Educ. Enq. Abstract, 63.
  • 4. Mins. of Educ. Cttee. of Council, 1849-50 [1215], p. clxvii, H.C. (1850), xliii; C.U.L., E.D.R, C 3/25.
  • 5. C.R.O., 391/P 48.
  • 6. 53 Lond. Gaz. 10 Sept. 1875, p. 4451.
  • 7. Kelly's Dir. Cambs. (1883); C.R.O., 391/P 48.
  • 8. Black, Cambs. Educ. Rec. 63.
  • 9. Camb. News, 1 July 1963; 10 Feb. 1967.
  • 10. J. Brackenbury, Impington Village Coll. 1-10 (copy in Cambs. Colln.); Archit. Rev. lxxxvi. 225-7; Pevsner, Cambs. 412-13, 559; above, plate facing p. 28.