Our History

Micklefield was started in July 1928 by Miss Jill Wilson (Willy, who later married Captain Ingram to become Mrs Ingram) and Miss Tish Beazley (Buzz). Initially, the school was in the grounds of Miss Wilson’s parents’ house, known as Grange Cottage in Gables Road, Rondebosch, and it was known as Grange Cottage School.

The school started out with only three pupils, Geoffrey McLachlan (born 2 May 1923), John Stevenson (born 4 August 1923), and Diana Brooke (born 31 May 1924). Gradually the school expanded, until the end of 1933, when it moved to 81 Sandown Road and was renamed Micklefield.

According to the Micklefield Jubilee Magazine of 1988, the origin of the name Micklefield School has never been clearly established. One tentative theory is that the two founders of the school had met at Micklefield School in Sussex, England, in the early 1920s, where they perhaps taught together.

“Miss Wilson and Miss Beazley were physical opposites. Miss Wilson was tall, with grey curly hair and was rather austere. Miss Beazley was shorter, dumpier and more approachable but neither of them were anything but The Headmistresses, not real people, to me.” (Janet Fry, née Gordon, pupil 1937/8–1943)

The era of the founders drew to a close in 1964 when Miss Beazley and Mrs Ingram retired, their 36 years marked by an air of cheerful industry. Miss Beazley left for England in February 1965 and Mrs Ingram remained in the cottage that now houses the Pre-primary, Aftercare and Music until she died in July 1988 (exactly 60 years after starting the school).

The Micklefield building has changed much over the years, with various classes moving to different parts of the school as rooms were added. In the beginning, there was just the main house on rather large grounds surrounded by a myrtle hedge, but following the death of Mrs Ingram, Micklefield Cottage became available to the school and the grounds were extended to include the nursery school.

Boys at Micklefield

Originally, Micklefield was open to both girls and boys, but the boys only stayed at the school from nursery through to Grade 3. By 1955 there were no boys left in the school, except for a brief period between 1988 and 1995.
The last boy was here in 1995 and his name was Christopher Otten.  “We needed to make space for more girls.”  (Jenny Masterson headmistress 1994 – 2003)

Uniforms

For a short while, before the days of wearing pink, there were no school uniforms at all. Then Miss Wilson and Miss Beazley decided on navy-blue gym tunics with beige blouses and cherry-coloured ties. Soon after this came the move to pink (Miss Beazley’s favourite colour).

Initially the uniforms could not be bought from a shop. Each girl had individualised, homemade dresses made from the official material, until into the 1960s, when some children bought dresses.
It was while Mrs Eileen Urquhart (now Mrs Phillips) was principal (1978–1981) that the standardised uniform came into being.

Interesting facts

  • The school’s telephone number has not changed since 1939.
  • In 1978 Micklefield celebrated its golden anniversary of fifty years and in 1988 its diamond jubilee of sixty years.
  • In 1999 the prefabricated school hall was dismantled and given to Siyazakkah School, where it is now being used as a hall too!

The Headmistresses up until this time

Miss Jill Wilson (Mrs Ingram) and Miss Beazley1928–1964
Mrs Wendy Waddell1964–1971
Mrs Helen Spilhaus1971–1978
Mrs Eileen Urquhart1978–1981
Mrs Penny Berens1981–1991
Mrs Margaret Erleigh1991–1994
Mrs Jenny Masterson1994–2003
Mrs Jeannette Welgemoed2004–present
Micklefield School

Contact Micklefield School

021 685 6494
Micklefield School
81 Sandown Road
Rondebosch
Cape Town
Western Cape
7700
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