College History

Laying of the Foundation Stone on 30 April 1983  Plaque commemorating opening of College

When Canberra's population was flourishing in the 1980s, a new Anglican school was conceived to match the growth. After careful planning and consideration, Radford was created.

The school's namesake, Bishop Lewis Bostock Radford, was an advocate of modern education and passionate about schools being fair, progressive and engaging. He was a supporter of education for women and community engagement. Notably, he also revitalised the Anglican Church in the Canberra region.

Formally founded in 1983, the foundation stone of Radford College was laid by Bishop Cecil Warren in 1983 and the school opened its doors in 1984 with just 235 students and 15 teachers. As a school centred on inclusiveness, community, modernity and success, it grew very quickly in size and reputation.

Today, there are 2009 students enrolled from Pre-Kindergarten to Year 12, with equal numbers of boys and girls across all year groups. The College is constantly developing to make sure we stay in touch with our students and the world.     

 Principal JA Mackinnon and Sir Ninian Stephen    Governor General Sir Ninian Stephen and the Chairman of the Board Dr TB Millar on Opening Day, 11 February 1984
Opening Day, 11 February 1984
(L) Governor General Sir Ninian Stephen with Foundation Principal Mr Jock Mackinnon, AM
(R) Governor General Sir Ninian Stephen with Chairman of the Board Dr TB Millar

A detailed timeline of Radford's history can be viewed here

Radford College Archives

If you would like to know more about Radford's history, or if you have photographs or other items you want to donate, please contact the Radford archivist, Katie Taylor, at