Our school shares its name with the local area and the paper mill. There has been a mill in the area for over 500 years; originally for grinding corn.
In the early 19th century, the mill was purchased by John Dickinson, a paper merchant. Over time, John Dickinson purchased most of the local mills, inventing new ways of paper-making which used machines, John Dickinson patented 13 different inventions. In 1818, the canal was also diverted, moved from the current site of our school (which had been ear-marked for a paper mill), to the site of the existing mills, where it remains today. When building the new school canteen in 1947, the original course was discovered and the clay used to make pottery.
Due to this, his company grew and expanded quickly, creating a range of things which were taken to London using the canal.
In 1836, John Dickinson moved from Nash Mills House (now part of the estate opposite school) into the newly built Abbots Hill, which is now a private school.