The Pittard House Shield

The Pittard 'House' Shield

Yeovil School's 'Houses' and the 'House Shield'


The following is reproduced courtesy of Dave Shorey.


"The House system was introduced into the public schools in the early nineteenth-century when boarders were accommodated in separate premises in or near the school and the pupil was therefore 'housed'. Supervision was in the hands of a Master, supported by senior boys, and over the years the system engendered fierce competition and esprit de corps to the 'House'; the House was first, then the School.

The system and its ethos was also found in the Grammar Schools but the date of its introduction in Yeovil School is somewhat uncertain. It was definitely flourishing in July 1923 when the first school magazine was published and Old Yeovilian, Mr Wreford Pittard, presented the School with the House Shield. Designed by Mr GJ Mitchell, ARCA, and executed under his supervision by Wessex Artists, the trophy compels admiration by the dignity and artistic simplicity of its appearance. The outer shield is of oak surrounded by a laurel wreath, while in the centre, raised above the wood and cast in silver is a representation of the School Badge, with some modifications.

The upper part shows St John in a niche, the mere lines of the School Badge being replaced by figures. Representations of trees, presumably pines, appear at the extreme edges. Still following the School Badge the lower part depicts a dragon rampant, the arms of the County of Somerset. On a scroll of the same metal as the base is the School motto 'Esse Quam Videri'. Wreford Pittard and a reminder of his three-fold connection with the School - Old Boy, Governor, Parent - appear on the oak below the metal design.

The ultimate symbol of success, for which the three Houses - Ivel, Kingston and School - would fiercely compete, was awarded annually to the House which achieved the highest standard in work, conduct and sport. The house colours shown on ties and scarves were Ivel - green, Kingston - blue, and School - yellow, but why the colours were chosen is also a mystery.

The House system was at its zenith during the thirty years from the 1920s to the 1950s, but, even during the turmoil of values in the 1960s it retained its influence in the School. In each edition of The Yeovilian, the Houses reported on their activities and 'House Notes' reflected the atmosphere of competition and loyalty which the system promoted." 




Courtesy of the Old Yeovilians Association Archive

Yeovil School's 'House' Shield, presented by Wreford Pittard.