English School Uniform: Individual Schools--Harrow County School for Boys

Figure 1.--This photograph shows the new boys at Harrow County School for Boys in 1962. The photograph was taken in October at the beginning of the year. Jeffrey Maynard. the webmaster of a site devoted to the school, tells HBC that he is in the photogtaph.

The Harrow County School for Boys was founded in 1911. By 1961 it was a grammar school, an academically selective secondary school. Uniform regulations of course varied over the years. In the 1950s all the new boys wore short trousers. In the early 1960s, the new boys wore shorts, except the taller boys were allowed to wear long trousers. The school became a comprehensive in 1975.

The School

The Harrow County School for Boys is now known as Harrow High School. The school was a grammar school which had a traditional uniform with a green blazer. Older boys were allowed some destinctive features to their blazer. The school, like most English grammar schools, has since been converted to a comprehensive school.

Black and White Photographs

One of the difficulties HBC faces is interpreting black and wite photographs. Sometimes guesses about colors can be made based on grey shades. Of course computers can colorize balck and white images as is done for the movies. Guessing colors from black and white images, however, is frought with peril. HBC had thought the blazers here were black blazers. In fact the blazers were dark green.


The photograph shows the boyus wearing a traditional uniform of dark (probably black) blazer with the school crest. The boys wear white shirts, ties, and grey trousers. The 10 boys in the front row are evenly split between short and long trousers. It is no clear what the rest of the boys are wearing because there is no way of knowing if this is a repesentaive sample. All the boys but one wear grey socks. One boy for some reason wears white socks. The boys in shorts have the kneesocks with the colored bands. Only a few boys wear plain grey kneesocks--mostly in the alter years when short trousers were becoming less common. All of the boys wear black leather shoes. The previous year in primary school, some of these boys probably wore sandals. We note that the headmaster in 1965 was concerned that during the Winter the boys were wearing coats and jackets in many different styles and colors. He thus introduced new rules on the coats that the boys could wear.

Figure 2.--New entrants at the school in 1962 wore both long and short trousers. While there was a set uniform, parents could choose either long or short trousers.


HBC has some time-line data about the school. Information is available from 1961 and 1972. The uniform looks almost identical over that period, exceot that fewer boys were wearing short pants and kneesocks in 1972. This was part of a general trend in England. Even the Boy Scouts switched to long trousers in 1969.


Photographs from the 1950s show all the new boys wearing short trousers and kneesocks. In 1953, for example, there were no exceptions for the taller boys. It is also likely that many boys in the 1950s wore shorts into the 2nd and even third form.


Boys in 1962 wear a basic English secondary school uniform, a green blazer with grey trousers. The school is quite strict about the uniform. Each boy is fully togged out for the class photograph. Many of the Form 1 or first year boys who were 11-12 at the beginning of the year wear short pants and kneesocks. Few older boys wore short trousers. Caps were still required, but the boys did not like them.


The uniform was little changed in 1964. Some first year boys wear shorts, but decidefly fewer than in 1961. As the school did not sytrictly enforce the rule about short trousers, more and more boys were successfully convincing their parents to purchase long trousers for them.

Figure 3.--New entrants at the school in 1972 mostly wore long trousers with their school uniform. There were still a few boys at the school, however, that wore short trousers. It appears that 1972 was about the last year that any of the boys at the school wore shorts.


Boys in 1972 wear the same basic English secondary school uniform, a blazer with grey trousers. The school continues to insist that boys wear proper uniform. The uniform is virtually unchanged from 1961. Almost all of the Form 1 boys now wear long pants, although a few boys still wear short trousers with their school uniform. The only other observable difference is the hair styles the boys wear.

Cadet Program

The Harrow County School was one of the largest state school CCFs and fielded army, navy and air force sections, as can be seen by the uniforms. We have a picture of the Harrow County School CCF warrant officers/NCOs from the mid-1960s. Note the peaked caps.

Harrow County School Page

Jeffrey Maynard, an old boy at Harrow, has compiled a wonderful web site on the Harrow County School. It includes a fascinating collection of clipings, memmories, photographs and much more. The images here on HBC are ones from Jeff's site. HBC incourages those who would like a an informative look at an English grammar school to visit Jeff's site. HBC of course focuses on uniforms and fashions, but much more goes on at schools and Jeff's site provides an ecclectic look at one English grammar school.


Related Chronolgy Pages in the Boys' Historical Web Site
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Related Style Pages in the Boys' Historical Web Site
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Created: December 18, 2000
Last updated: 9:46 PM 5/19/2005