THE 575-year history of Chipping Campden School is being celebrated with an archive project.

The school, which was founded in 1440, has been awarded £30,500 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) to archive memories and memorabilia of former pupils and staff over the next two years.

Current students will work alongside former pupils to build an online archive with photos and anecdotes from the school. Reunion events are planned for the surrounding towns and villages in the school catchment area and ex-students from around the world will be encouraged to contribute online.

Headteacher John Sanderson said: “I can’t wait to see what treasures are unearthed as all this activity reaches its climax with our 575 years celebrations.

“Having the funding in place to enable such a fabulous project to take place will be great news to everyone associated with Chipping Campden School both past and present. Crucially, it will also lay down a legacy to benefit future generations of students who will make Chipping Campden School part of their story.”

Campden and District Historical and Archaeological Society (CADHAS) and Gloucestershire Archives are partners in the project and will help the volunteers to study their records for clues to the school’s history.

Judith Ellis, chairman of CADHAS and former Campden head girl, said the project came about after members found they kept discussing school memories at meetings.

“A number of CADHAS members are old students,”

she said. “In our CADHAS family history group memories of the school kept coming up. We suggested that it may be worthwhile to make a proper project of it.”

Photographs, badges and reports have been offered to the archive including a blazer marked with ‘Old Scholars’ Association’ which suggests the existence of an ex-student society in the 1930s.