The post of Treasurer dates from 1553, when Edward VI granted the Charter to the three Royal Hospitals of Christ, St Thomas and Bridewell. Richard Grafton, who had been the King’s Printer and Treasurer of St Bartholomew’s Hospital, was appointed Treasurer-General to the three Royal Hospitals which Edward VI founded.  For much of the subsequent period, the Treasurer, who was elected by the ruling Court of Governors (later Council of Almoners), and took his charge (terms of office), had day-to-day responsibility for the running of the School. As the name implies, he (no woman had been appointed to the post until 1996 – see below) was responsible for accounting for the School’s income and expenditure; for the appointment and conduct of the staff (including the teachers); and for ensuring that the decisions of the ruling bodies were put into effect; there was also a ‘guardian’ responsibility for the children under the Hospital’s care. The Treasurer chaired the meetings of the Court of Governors, the Committee of Almoners and its other committees, although the President (particularly the Duke of Cambridge) occasionally chaired the first two groups. The post was a demanding one. It was also unsalaried, although he had a large and splendid residence within the Newgate Street grounds.

In 1891, when the Scheme of Administration for the running of Christ’s Hospital was introduced, the role changed markedly, in particular, through the re-structuring of the School’s governance which would no longer see the Treasurer at its head and the granting of substantially greater powers to the Head Master (and Head Mistress). Further, the Treasurer’s house was lost with the move to Horsham, although the post does remain unsalaried.

Since the founding of the School, as can be seen from the list, which can be reached by clicking on the icon on the left, some 50 people have filled the post. Of these, 16 have been Old Blues, mostly post-18th century. Amongst many distinguished Old Blue Treasurers, William Foster White (1867-1872), was the first Old Blue to be Treasurer; Sir Walter Vaughan Morgan (1891-1910) was a major benefactor to the School and was Lord Mayor; Frederick Augustus White (1920-1922) was elected to the post aged 80; Sir Barnes Wallis (1957-1970), again a major benefactor, also became the first Chairman of the Council of Almoners; and Susan Mitchell, in 1996, became the first woman to be elected to the post, serving until 2002.