Coombe Road Primary School

Coombe Road Primary School

Every child, every family and every moment matters.

Milner Road, Brighton, East Sussex, BN2 4BP

01273 077130

Our history

log books and dolphins!

We have detailed log books that provide an interesting daily insight into the school’s history, including the first ever entry from the day the school opened on Monday 1st April 1912. You will see that Coombe Road School (as it was called then) started as a boys school with 193 boys on that opening day.

The first ‘head master’ was Thomas Mogridge in 1912.

The school adopted a logo that fitted the city’s crest and fashion at the time - a dolphin in the shield.

The school colours

The school colours have changed over time. The pictures below show our school crest in the 1950s and the yellow that was part of the uniform in the two school ties and crest during the 1970s. There was even a school blazer!

The blue and yellow school shield below was designed by one of the children in the 1970s but the yellow has long since been phased out, leaving us with the navy and white school colours we have today.

dolphin imagery in victorian brighton

In more modern times, there was speculation as to what the image on the school logo was with many considering it to be a fish, possibly a gurnard. However, it was actually the image of a dolphin taken from popular Victorian statues and ornaments that were around before the school was built.

These cast-iron examples below were created by William Pepper for Amon Henry Wilds’ Old Steine fountain which was commissioned in commemoration of Queen Victoria’s 27th birthday.

However, the dolphins were removed from the Victoria fountain when extensive refurbishment was undertaken in 1990 and used as part of a statue, which can be found on the Western Road, near Norfolk Square today.

Similar depictions of the dolphins can be seen on Victorian era candlesticks and ornaments.

dolphin images in local heraldry

These Victorian dolphin images were inspired by the old Brighton and Hove crest. According to Brighton and Hove City Council, the Commissioners of Brighton (the local government body during the first half of the 19th century) used two dolphins in their seal.


It is now a matter of speculation whether the dolphins were adopted because of the town’s association with the sea or because the commissioners had adopted the emblem of one of the leading families in the town. Both the Scrase family, who were associated with the Manor of Brighton and represented amongst the Commissioners, and the Lashmar family, one of whose members was High Constable in 1799, bore dolphins on their Coat of Arms.

These dolphins on the crest can be seen on the wall of ‘The Pavilion’ and it is easy to see the resemblance to the school's original emblem on the right. Notice too that the 'CRS' stood for Coombe Road School because it was not referred to as a primary school originally.

Since then, the crest and its dolphin images have been modernised with this example found on ‘The Brighton Centre’ wall.

We have also celebrated our link to the dolphins at events, such as the Children's Parade. You can see the original school logo on the children's T-shirts.

modern imagery - meet milner the dolphin

In 2023, our school logo was modernised to the dolphin it is today. Say hello to Milner the dolphin!

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