Elmfield School in the 1950s
Elmfield School in the 1950s

Elmfield School opened in 1934 in a house called Elmfield in Selly Oak, Birmingham. This was the home of Henry Lloyd Wilson and his wife Theodora, whose son Michael, in conjunction with Fried Geuter, invited Eileen Hutchins to found the venture. It started initially to provide a Waldorf education for the children of people working at Sunfield Children’s Homes in Clent.

When war broke out in 1939 the school was evacuated and two classes were offered temporary accommodation at Sir Hugh and Lady Chance’s home in Bromsgrove, while the rest were housed at Sunfield in  Clent. After a term all were re-united at Sunfield, with school taking place in former workshops there. Two years later, however, the school was closed except for a small Kindergarten group that was carried through the war years by Eileen Hutchins.

At the end of the war, Eileen Hutchins’ father bought Park Hill, the present main building of the school. After clearing up the dilapidated house and garden, following occupation by US Army troops who had been billeted there, the opening took place on 16th October 1946. Thorn Hill, the house next door, was bought by the school in 1962, with a condition of sale being that the school should look after the resident peacocks !

Further buildings were added and alterations made: the gym hall, uniting the two houses; a handwork and classroom block (Blue Cedar); and the Tobias Wing, with its purpose-built eurythmy room, laboratory, pottery and classrooms.

The latest addition to the school was the extension to the Tobias wing, Gawain, providing the school with four large, well-equipped classrooms and a smaller room dedicated to the use and teaching of information technology and to smaller subject groups.