Elliot was succeeded in 1887 by the Rev. A.
Hancock and the latter was in turn succeeded
by the Rev. E. Munro in 1893. Alas ! the
idyllic bliss that governed the school was
not to last forever. Disaster struck in the
winter of 1895 and for a long spell ill-luck
dogged the school. Firstly, covetous eyes
were cast on Sherwood, described as 'that
most desirable piece of property'. The school
received notice to quit. 'Sherwood' in
order that a new Government House might be
built. Masters and boys were shunted from
pillar to post. As a temporary measure,
accommodation was provided at 'Barnsdale' in
the vicinity of the present-day Secretariat
and temporary it proved to be, for in the
early hours of Easter morning in 1896, the
boys were rudely awakened and told to
evacuate the building which was on fire.
Although there was no loss of life thanks
largely to Mr. Tom Taylor who supervised the
evacuation, the building itself, largely made
of wood, was reduced to ashes.
But Fate was not done yet. It was decided to
move the school to the 'health resort' (!) of
Khurpatal. Here cholera and enteric swept
through the school, claiming among their
victims the then Principal, the Rev. E. Munro
who died of enteric in Ramsay Hospital.
When this happened, it was generally felt
that it was time to beat a hasty retreat.
For want of anything more suitable, three
houses on Alma hill - 'Tonnochy', 'Snow view'
and 'St. Cloud' - served as temporary
accommodation. The school now hit an all-time
low. From over 100 boys at the beginning of
the year, only 35 had survived the ordeal. By
1898 numbers had dwindled to 32.
some land on a spur of Ayarpatta was acquired
in 1897 and the foundation-stone laid by
Alfred, Lord Bishop of Lucknow, on 5th June.
Hence from that date, June 5th has
always been reckoned as Founder's Day. The
school had at last found a permanent
In 1898, the Rev. R. Biggs, who had filled
the void created by Rev. Munro's death,
reigned and Mr. R.C. Rosselet was
appointed. He was the 'Principal for a mere
three years but under him Sherwood grew and
established itself and the ill-luck that
dogged the school seemed now a nightmare of
the past. It was he who chose the school
motto, 'Mereat Quisque Palmam' - 'Let each
one merit his prize'.
By the turn of the century, the school was
making itself felt in the field of sports.
The Colvin Club and the Gymkhana had both
been regarded as the best cricket teams until
the Sherwood XI revised the order before it
went on to beat Aligarh College. Football and
hockey were late - starters but it was not
long before a fearsome reputation in sports
was built up - a reputation zealously
maintained to the present day.