- Why boys only?
- Does the school adopt a maximum class size?
- What is the School’s Entrance Criteria?
- How is Campbell Academically Selective and yet it caters for a wide range of ability?
- What part does Religion play in the life of the School?
- Does the school offer a variety of extra curricular activities?
- Is Campbell just a sporty school?
- Are Music and Art important aspects of school life?
- What are the transport arrangements?
- Opening hours of the School shop?
- Why Northern Ireland?
- Why Boarding?
- The History of the Houses
Campbell’s entrance criteria varies between Junior and Senior School. In the Junior School it is non-selective and as such does not use an entry test but rather boys are selected on a strictly first come, first served basis. However, the Head of Junior School does require to see all prospective pupils before joining and all are invited to visit the school for a 'taster session' before they join. This enables an informal assessment to be carried out before a pupil joins the school.
The Senior School has remained true to its heritage of being a boarding school as well as a selective school. Two streams of entry occur, a selective one through specific entrance assessments * and a non-selective stream through a range of criteria set out in the prospectus.
*Due to Covid, 2021 entrance for Year 8 will not be based on academic selection and new admissions criteria will be published soon.
Campbell caters for boys of all abilities. However, parents should recognise that the school day is longer than normal and the expectations placed upon each boy are demanding. Secondly, through the application of entrance criteria, in what is described as a ‘bi-lateral’ manner boys are selected for the College under specific academic criteria or under associated non-academic criteria. The College, together with parents, makes every effort to ensure that the school environment is right for each pupil. Additional support is provided for boys who struggle to meet certain areas of the curriculum. A rigourous application of streaming is used throughout the Senior School.
Campbell is a non-denominational school for boys aged between 3 and 18. The school positively welcomes boys with all religious beliefs. All boys attend Morning Assembly and are invited to attend a number of family services held on a Sunday throughout the year. Services are based on the Christian religion. The Religious Education syllabus follows the syllabus specific to the College, though influenced by the boys who are introduced to all major religions as part of our Religious Education and SMSC (Social, Moral, Spiritual and Cultural) programme.
The school runs a staggering array of extra-curricular activities – all planned with young males in mind. For some boys, their personal strength may often lie outside of the academic curriculum and it is important that these are recognised to the greatest extent possible within the structure of the school. The large list of activities encourages boys to participate in something after class most days: examples of activities include Sport, Art Club, Lego Technics, Rugby Football, Hockey, Cricket, Swimming, Kayaking, Combined Cadet Force and Modern Languages.
Sport adds greatly to the life of Campbell but not in isolation. Whilst boys enjoy a wide range of curricular sporting opportunities including; rugby, cricket, swimming, tennis, golf, athletics, badminton, volleyball and gymnastics, we are equally busy and successful in our music, art and drama departments. Outside the sporting curriculum, after school clubs include; archery, polo, SCUBA diving, badminton, water polo, fencing, handball and judo. It is hoped that skills such as determination, perseverance and tolerance fostered on the sporting field is then applied to everyday life within the College and at home.
Music, Art and Drama are very strong at Campbell, both in the number of boys who pursue these subjects after school and the standard that they achieve in each. More importantly though is the importance that is attached to each of these disciplines. Boys who excel or enjoy these subjects are recognised equally throughout the school and their achievements valued highly.
There are school buses to and from Bangor. After school there is an express and a stopper which leave from the school grounds, there is also a late bus which leaves at 4.55pm (Monday - Thursday). Other routes are serviced by the public buses operated by Translink (Tel: 02890 666630).
Parents should apply to their local education and library board for a bus pass, if a boy loses his pass he may obtain a temporary pass from Front of House along with the necessary information to send away for a replacement one.
The House System was introduced in April 1908 by Headmaster MacFarland to ‘foster internal competition’. It plays an important role in the everyday life of the College, providing opportunities for boys to get involved in College life outside of the classroom.
There are currently seven Houses – six Day Boy Houses and one Boarding House. Each House is comprised of one tutor group from each of Years 8-14. This gives the students the opportunity to mix with students from different year groups.
Each House is identified by a colour which forms the coloured stripe in each boy's tie, as well as House shirts worn during House Events.
Houses are named after former Masters; below is a brief commentary, on the figures who have contributed significantly to the development of our College.
- Alden’s House
- Allison’s House
- Davis’s House
- Dobbin’s House
- Price’s House
- Yates’s House
- School House (Boarding)
Housemaster: Ms V Wightman
Colour: Dark Green
History of House:
Lewis Alden was the fifth son of an Oxford 'gentleman', educated entirely in his home town. Short-sighted and irascible, he arrived at Campbell in 1898 to teach English. He encouraged his pupils to read modern as well as more traditional literature, and no less than four future professors, including C S Lewis and E R Dodds, were to acknowledge their academic debt to his teaching. He was also noted for his elegant ice-skating whilst smoking a cigar! Alden was appointed one of the four original boarding Housemasters in 1908. He retired in 1930 and died on 22 October 1941. The name of Alden's House briefly disappeared in 1995 with the creation of a single boarding School House.
Housemaster: Mrs K Magreehan
Colour: Light Green
History of House:
William Mitchell Baird Allison was an Irishman who joined the Staff in 1896, and quickly became Senior Mathematics Master. He was respected as a teacher of outstanding fairness and integrity, and was one of the few who was able to maintain discipline without resorting to the cane. He was a natural choice as a Housemaster in 1908. Allison became Second Master, and was asked to deputise in April 1922 when the Headmaster died suddenly. He declined because of recurrent ill- health and he died soon after on 2 March 1923. The immense regard in which he was held was demonstrated by the installation of the clock in his honour in the main tower.
Housemaster: Mr D Ledwich
History of House:
Robert Furley Davis was born in Nottingham, the son of a lace warehouseman. He was educated at Nottingham High School and Cambridge University, where he studied Classics. An organised, modest, incisive and witty individual, he arrived at Campbell in 1902 from Leamington College, and retired in 1931. Although of diminutive stature, he was a highly-respected Classics teacher, who conveyed a passion for his subject. Although photographs do not show it, he had lost an eye, but he proved another able ice-skater! He was in charge of the first Day-boy House, founded in 1908. He died at his home in Wandsworth Road on 14 February 1937, and was honoured with an obituary in The Times.
Housemaster: Mr S Collier
Colour: Light Blue
History of House:
Thomas Ringland Dobbin was a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants. He joined the school office staff in 1898, but became Bursar and Commercial Master in 1911. He retired twenty years later. Known as 'Toby', little is known about him. Dobbin's was instituted in 1921 as a junior Day-boy House. He retired in 1931.
Housemaster: Mr J Cupitt
Colour: Dark Blue
History of House:
George Fetherston Price was an Irishman, a Classicist who had been a Scholar and Gold Medallist at Trinity College Dublin. Blessed with 'a sense of humour and a pungent wit', he was also a passionate angler, a pastime which he encouraged amongst his pupils. It was claimed that 'a day in his company was a joy forever'. One of the original 1908 boarding Housemasters, he retired in 1927 to Stoke Trister in Dorset, where he died after a long illness on 3 April 1940.
Housemaster: Mr R Hall
History of House:
John William Yates was born in Birmingham, the son of a doctor, and educated in his home town and at Oxford University, where he displayed a passion for drama and rowing. An uncomplicated and unassuming man, he arrived at Campbell to teach Classics in 1898. He was a capable musician, blessed with a good tenor voice; he also composed the school song - Ne Obliviscaris - in 1910, and one of his tunes graced the Irish Church Hymnal. He produced many of the plays performed at Speech Day, and was regarded as something of an inventor - patenting a gadget that made Double Dummy bridge possible! He was one of the original boarding Housemasters in 1908, and in 1925 retired to St Albans, where he died on 1 January 1939.
Housemaster: Mr B Robinson
History of House:
Boarding has always been a central part of Campbell life. When the college opened in 1894 with around 250 boys on the register, 90 of them were boarders.
The names of the boarding houses have changed over the years. School House came in to existence in 1995, when two boarding/day boy houses, Alden's and Price's, were merged.
School House has developed further over the years:
- In 2004 a Junior Boarding Department was opened
- In 2012 a 48 bedroom, en-suite facility opened
- In 2019 a 61 bedroom, en-suite facility opened
With the new provision came the opportunity to reconfigure Boarding at Campbell College and 2019 saw the creation of three Houses, a Junior Boarding House and two vertical Senior Houses:
- Armour’s - Junior Boarding House Years 8-10
- Bowen’s – Senior Boarding House Years 11-14
- Chase’s – Senior Boarding House Years 11-14
Today, we have over 150 boarders from all over the world - a far cry from our humble beginnings!