Conference will celebrate education pioneer

Painting of Henry Morris on display at Sawston Village College

Painting of Henry Morris on display at Sawston Village College - Credit: Henry Morris Memorial Trust

A special conference is being held to mark the 100th anniversary of Henry Morris being appointed director of education for Cambridgeshire. 

Henry Morris was responsible for transforming the education system by introducing a ‘cradle to grave’ principle which thrives to this day. 

He called it ‘raising the school-leaving age to 90’. 

Cllr Bryony Goodliffe, chair of Cambridgeshire County Council’s children and young people’s committee added: “Henry Morris was one of the great education reformers of the 20th century. 

“We are immensely proud that his vision and foresight originated here in Cambridgeshire, but went on to benefit so many others both here and across the world.  

“This fascinating conference will revisit his many achievements and ensure his legacy lives on.” 

The Henry Morris Memorial Trust will be hosting the conference at Bottisham Village College on June 30. 

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Henry's legacy is important, but the event will focus more on schools contributing to a future with 'education from the cradle to the grave'. 

Morris was chief education officer in Cambridgeshire for over 30 years from 1922.  

In 1924 he wrote the now famous memorandum which led to the establishment of the village colleges.  

This led to a shift towards community education in many parts of Britain and abroad - a change based on the belief that education should be a lifelong process.  

His work and influence saw the emergence of village colleges, which were created to serve the whole community – not just the children.  

Henry Morris’s achievements were recognised in 2016 when a blue plaque was put up outside the house in Darwin College in Cambridge where he lived for many years. 

Speakers at the conference on June 30 will include Neil Hopkins from Bedford University; Jonathan Lewis, Cambridgeshire County Council’s current Director of Education and Tom Woodin from the University of London’s Institute of Education. 

The event will be free and you can book in advance at Henry Morris Centenary Conference Tickets, Thu 30 Jun 2022 at 16:45 | Eventbrite 

Peter Hains, chair of the Henry Morris Memorial Trust said: "Henry Morris began a revolution in Cambridgeshire when he invented 'community education'. 

“This conference, open to all, will celebrate the excellent work that many village colleges are still doing today, and it will discuss the future for adult education in the county."