Henry Dallimore

Henry Dallimore burst
Bust of Dallimore at Christ’s School compound. Source: christsschoolalumni.org

Henry Dallimore was a pionner Christian missionary in old Ekiti Division and founder of the area’s premier secondary school; Christ School, Ado-Ekiti. Born 1885 in England, Dallimore came to Ekiti, Nigeria in 1925 alongside Rev. T. Harding, Mr. Babamboni, and Canon Jebb. Before this time, he had expressed his dissatisfaction with the defects and the conservatism of the English public school system which was limited to the study of Greek and Latin. Education in West Africa, Dallimore believed, should be established on a wider platform. In pursuit of this ideology, he moved from Sierra Leone where he was working, to St. Andrews’s College Oyo.

At Oyo, Dallimore was appointed superintendent of the Ekiti District with full authority to try out his education administrative ideas. Under him, Ekiti primary schools dotting all over the district was united as the Ekiti Central School, representing the beginning of what will become the Christ’s School. Dallimore, having laid the foundation of the school, retired in 1947. His struggle against the educational authorities and outright subservience had culminated in the upgrade of his school to a high school (called secondary) status. When Dallimore was retiring, he indicated he would like the place as his resting place. His wish was granted as he was flown to Nigeria for burial in July 19, 1970. It was said in Dallimore’s obituary that he showed the light to Ekiti and the people found the way.

Tope Apoola
Profession: Writer