St Andrew’s School for Girls was founded in early Johannesburg by two Scottish women, Jean Fletcher and Jessie Johnston, on 22nd January 1902 in Esselen Street, Hospital Hill. Before long, the school had outgrown the Esselen Street premises, and in June 1904, St Andrew’s School for Girls moved into the newly built schoolhouse on the corner of Girton and Hillside Roads in Parktown. In 1920, Jean Fletcher purchased 108 morgan of Bedford Farm land and the homestead, Bedford Court, from the deceased estate of Sir George Farrar. Sir George was a well – known South African figure during the early 1900’s; a Randlord; Mining Magnate; Leader of the Opposition Party and Chairman of the Chamber of Mines, until his untimely death on 20th May 1915. St Andrew’s School for Girls opened its doors again in 1921. To this day, St Andrew’s School for Girls has been housed on the land that was once Bedford Farm and in the beautiful Sir Herbert Baker- designed homestead, which was once the residence of Sir George and Lady Ella Farrar and their six daughters!

After 117 years of Excellence in Education – St Andrew’s remains one of the country’s foremost, historic schools.

View the St Andrew’s Story Map:

A view of Bedford Court  taken in 1907 , with the head gardener in the foreground.

Sir George Herbert Farrar

Lady Ella Farrar

Another view of Bedford Court taken in 1907, showing the extent of the homestead.