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The Howard Partnership Trust (THPT) is a Multi-Academy Trust created in November 2013 and led by Howard of Effingham School, an outstanding school which is also a designated Academy Sponsor. Visit website

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Mr R Coles

As some of you may be aware at the end of last week Mr R A V Coles, former Headmaster of Oxted (County) School sadly passed away. I have spoken this morning to the family and passed on the condolences from the School, the community and myself. 

Mr Coles was a remarkable Headmaster and led the school for over 18 years. I can speak from personal experience just what he meant to the students. You always felt that Mr Coles knew you personally, he would remember your name at the blink of an eye, but would also always know something about your background. He managed to make a large school feel like a community. He had a reputation as being firm, fair and approachable but you certainly never wanted to be summoned to his office, even if it was to deliver his lunch!   Whenever I remember Mr Coles, I remember someone who put the students first and he was Oxted through and through. 

For me personally, it is incredibly sad as I had hoped to invite Mr Coles to revisit the school. I wanted to sit with him and learn just how to be an outstanding Headteacher (as well as how to remember 2,000 names)!   I wanted to know how he would have felt about one of his former students returning to his office. 

We will, over the next couple of months, find a fitting way to remember his legacy. In response to the outpouring of love and remembrance from the community, I have commissioned a ‘book of remembrance’ to be set up in Reception at Oxted School.   Members of the community are free to come and leave their memories of this great man.   If you are unable to come into School but would like to pass on your regards and memories, please email Mrs Everall  We will then ensure these messages are passed on to the family. 

Our thoughts, love and prayers are with his wife and family at this sad time. He is a man who certainly left a lasting impression on a generation of young people and we will miss him.


Mr R Bond
Head of School