Building on Benefaction at the Dragon

Draogns Skating on School House Lawn 1960sCurrent pupils enjoy facilities funded by the generosity of others. The continuing and ongoing generosity of current and past parents, Old Dragons and friends ensure that the Dragon remains a diverse, vibrant community with excellent facilities.

In 1886, parents’ faith and financial support enabled Skipper Lynam to fulfil his extraordinary vision to found a school that would nurture, inspire and celebrate children’s unique gifts. £2,000 (over £200,000 in today’s terms) was raised to found the Dragon School and, by 1895, parents had donated a further £4,000 to fund the move to Bardwell Road. In 1953, the school was registered as a charity, The Dragon School Trust Ltd. At that time, three debentures (loans) were issued to raise capital and a ‘founders’ benevolent fund’ was created.

Parents and ODs continued to support pupils’ learning, creativity and enjoyment with generous contributions to the development of the School’s main site including the Resources Centre (Library) in 1996-97, the Science Block in 1998-89 and the Pool/ADT building in 1999-2000. In addition, since 2002, the lives of 54 pupils have been transformed by the school’s 125th Anniversary Bursaries programme which has been supported by A Block leavers’ parents, the Nicholas Knatchbull Bursary Fund, the Inky Fund and individual significant or regular donations.

Dragon Swimming Pool 1971In 2007, as part of the School’s carefully considered business plan, the Governing Body made a bold and prudent decision. In order to secure the school’s long term future on its historic North Oxford site, it purchased the land the school sits on from St John’s College. The repayment of this essential loan remains a financial restraint on capital development. As a result, the planned Music School, essential to children’s musical learning and enrichment, is the first major capital project to be funded solely through benefaction since the building of Lynam Hall, completed in 1984.

Fees cover staff and running costs, along with maintenance, however current pupils continue to benefit from the generous support of the past parents, Old Dragons and former staff that loved the ethos of the school and invested in the future of the school.

We are grateful to all those who continue this tradition.