Grantchester star and former Colyton Grammar student Tom Brittney goes ‘back to school’

Tom Brittnry with students at Colyton Grammar School

Tom Brittnry with students at Colyton Grammar School - Credit: Colyton Grammar School

Former Colyton Grammar School student Tom Brittney, who has gone on to star in ITV’s period crime drama Grantchester, went back to school to give acting masterclass sessions to year 10 and 12 students. 

Tom, who was a student at Colyton from 2002 to 2008, visited Colyton to see the new purpose-designed Bradbeer Drama Studio, named after former teacher Sidney Bradbeer, who taught Latin, French and Maths at Colyton Grammar School from 1947 to 1981.  

Mr Bradbeer left the school a significant legacy which has been used to found the Bradbeer Bursary Fund. This has funded the Drama Studio and is used to support students from households with limited income and a range of educational activities. This legacy has also been used to install solar panels at the school and for developments designed for the benefit of students. 

Tom spoke to a group of students at lunch answering plenty of questions, which included describing storytelling as his favourite part of the job. 

Tom shared his years of acting experience with aspiring thespians at Colyton Grammar School

Tom shared his years of acting experience with aspiring thespians at Colyton Grammar School - Credit: Colyton Grammar School

Tom takes students through how to tell the story of their character

Tom takes students through how to tell the story of their character - Credit: Colyton Grammar School

Returning to school, he reflected that he always used to do a backflip on the front lawn of school - he wanted to entertain people from an early age. He also spoke about people he would love to work with, one of them being the late Robin Williams. He has been lucky to realise two of his ambitions already – working with Tom Hanks and he is now working with Dame Judy Dench.   

He said: “It was an absolute pleasure to get the chance to return to my old school, and to pass on some of what I’ve learnt over the years to the younger generation.  

“It was also great to see how much Colyton is putting behind its drama courses, and how passionate and inspired the students are.”  

Tom with members of the Colyton Grammar School site team Carrie-Anne Targett, Vanessa Potter and Sue Stock

Tom poses for a photo with members of the Colyton Grammar School site team Carrie-Anne Targett, Vanessa Potter and Sue Stock - Credit: Colyton Grammar School

Most Read

Suzi Brownley, head of drama at Colyton Grammar School, said: “Tom’s visit was a wonderful way to celebrate the new studio space and the students really benefitted from his expertise and guidance during the workshop.  

“Tom was very generous with both his time and advice and so the students were able to observe the impact of his feedback on the practical work that they were creating.” 

After leaving Colyton Grammar, Tom trained at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama. His first TV acting role was in Doctors and his acting career took off when he played the role of Lieutenant Jeremy Foster in Outlander. His most recent TV role has seen him play lead character Reverend Will Davenport in Grantchester.