Our History

Trinity School is part of the John Whitgift Foundation, which has been serving the Croydon community since 1596.

The foundation stones

In 1596 Archbishop John Whitgift was granted permission from Queen Elizabeth I to establish a Foundation in Croydon, providing education for the young and care for the elderly.

Shortly after approval was given, the foundation stones for the Hospital of The Holy Trinity (the Almshouses) and a nearby school were laid.

Fast forward to the nineteenth century, when Archbishop John Whitgift’s legacy continued with the development of Whitgift Middle School. By the early twentieth century, it was decided to build two schools, which were to be known as Whitgift School (located at Haling Park) and Whitgift Middle School, based in Croydon’s North End.


It is a school for any bright child, regardless of socio-economic background.

Trinity Parent

William Ingrams was Whitgift Middle School’s first Headmaster, who ensured that the School’s fee level remained accessible to all sectors of society.  Oliver Berthoud changed the School’s name in 1954 to Trinity School of John Whitgift.

Trinity moved to the site of the Shirley Park Hotel in 1965, where it remains to this day. This heralded a new and exciting time in the School’s history, flourishing throughout the remaining part of the twentieth century and becoming the successful, dynamic and inspiring school we know today.

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The John Whitgift Foundation

John Whitgift Foundation is a leading education and care charity located in Croydon. Our vision is to support people of all ages and backgrounds, bringing them together to inspire a sense of community in all that we do.

We have a unique history in Croydon thanks to the legacy of our Founder, Archbishop John Whitgift. In 1596 he laid the first two foundation stones of the Hospital of The Holy Trinity. In the same year, just yards down the road, he opened a school. Together, these two buildings would help him realise his founding vision to educate and care for the people of Croydon. This was his legacy. Today, more than 400 years on, he’d take great pride in the charitable work the John Whitgift Foundation carries out in his name.



Our work covers three core areas:

Access to education:

As one of the largest bursary providers in the country, we grant thousands of young people access to an outstanding education at our Foundation Schools, Old Palace of John Whitgift, Trinity and Whitgift, that many could not otherwise afford.

Care for older people:

Through our care homes and services, we give older people a true sense of community, comfort and joy in later life.

Support of Croydon’s carers:

We offer free advice, information and a support network for Croydon’s carers – providing a welcome break from the isolation and exhaustion they can endure.

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