Commemorating John Russell, 1st Earl Russell, (August 18, 1792 – May 28, 1878) a leading Whig and Liberal politician who twice served as Prime Minister. However, it was not in his role as PM that he was honoured but in his position of president of the Warehousemen and Clerks’ Schools charity, for “the children of deceased and necessitous warehousemen and commercial clerks”. The school was completed here on June 18, 1866 on Russell Hill, named after the statesman, having moved from its original location in New Cross when demand outstripped the facilities. In 1961, the Russell Hill School at Purley was closed.
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