Our history

Who was Desmond Anderson?

Desmond Anderson was born in 1885 in Cheshire. He lived most of his early life in Devon. In 1902 he entered the Royal Military College, Sandhurst and in 1904 passed out first, receiving the Kings Gold Medal and the Anson Memorial Sword for general proficiency. There followed a distinguished military career at home and abroad through the two World Wars. He was promoted to Lieutenant General Sir Desmond Anderson.

After the Second World War he lived in Ifield, Crawley. He took an active part in our community helping servicemen after the Wars and he became interested in children and their education. He served on the Committees of the Crawley Parish Council, the Crawley Community Association, the Horsham Rural District Council and the West Sussex County Council. He was Governor and Manager of the Crawley Secondary and Primary Schools.

In 1953, with Mr Norman Longley and Mrs Colclough he held an Enquiry of Education in Crawley and submitted it to the West Sussex Council Council.

His hobbies included cricket, football, running, golf, walking and swimming. A crippling illness forced him to leave Crawley in 1956 after a long and active life. He died in 1967, bequeathing his Anson Sword of Honour to the school, which hangs in our entrance hall.

Academy history

Desmond Anderson First and Middle School first opened in 1958, across two school sites.

In 2005, the two schools merged to form Desmond Anderson Primary School, moving into a new purpose built building.

In February 2017, the school joined the University of Brighton Academies Trust and became Desmond Anderson Primary Academy.