History of the school
The history of St Leonard’s Catholic School.
Springwell Hall, a rich coal mine owner’s mansion, set in spacious grounds on the northern outskirts of Durham city, was purchased by the Diocese of Hexham and Newcastle in 1935. One year later, on 26th August 1936, Springwell Hall became the home to St Leonard’s Catholic Central School.
Changes in the educational system over the years meant that the school later became St Leonard’s Modern School and then in September 1970, it changed status again to become St Leonard’s Comprehensive School. The growth in pupil numbers has necessitated major new building work but the original mansion house is still at the heart of this thriving school.
St Leonard’s has ten main primary feeder schools and currently there are over 1400 pupils on roll and over 150 staff. Since those early days in 1936, St Leonard’s has grown in stature and reputation as well as in size: excellent traditions have been established and the school is currently an over-subscribed, highly successful comprehensive school and sixth form centre with state-of-the-art teaching facilities.
Sixth Form education started with small numbers in 1970 but at the moment there are over 250 students enrolled. The students are housed in a spacious new building – appropriately named The Martyrs’ Building – as the land on which the Sixth Form block stands is the site where, many centuries ago, Catholics were executed for the defence of their Faith.
On Tuesday the 13th February, a very special concert took place at Durham’s magnificent Town Hall. James Weeks, the conductor of Exaudi, a small professional chamber choir, has been working on composition with Year 13 A Level music pupils since the spring of 2023. Following a series of workshops in school, the compositions were finally performed […]
Published: February 22, 2024
In October 2023 the school moved Year 7 and 8 to Ushaw College, so we could resume Face to Face Teaching for all year groups as soon as possible. This allowed the school to deliver a broad and balanced curriculum, and we are grateful that Durham University and Ushaw were able to be accommodate us […]
Published: February 7, 2024
Six brilliant candidates have received offers from Oxford or Cambridge this year. Congratulations to them all and we wish them every success as they prepare for their A Levels. Thank you to Miss Bird and all the Sixth Form staff who have given excellent support – as ever – during the application process.
Published: January 26, 2024