A private school in Northwood has renamed its school house, which was named after controversial military leader.
The Merchant Taylors’ School for Boys has renamed the Clive of India house following a consultation with past and present students, to avoid associations with the ‘foundation of the Empire’, reported Watford Observer.
The house is now renamed after former pupil and Surrey Cricketer John Raphael, who was capped playing rugby for England and died a war hero in 1917.
Clive attended the school himself for a year, before his expulsion for fighting. He later looted the Bengal treasury of an equivalent of £2.35 billion and became the first British governor of the Bengal presidency,
Clive was historically criticised and blamed for mass famine and plundering, and his controversies became a topic of discussion following the global Black Lives Matter protests in 2020.
Simon Everson, the headmaster of Merchant Taylors’, has said that Robert Clive has always been a controversial figure and his actions in India were the foundations of Empire, but were also questioned by his own contemporaries.
Company before rising up to a high position within the British military, media reports said.
However, the decision has been criticised by historians. Professor Robert Tombs, a Cambridge historian, has said that there was a craven and mindless attitude being taken towards the British Empire by many public institutions.
Clive joined the East India Company in 1743 and attempted suicide before going on to defeat Mughal forces – allowing British expansion into Bengal.
He was accused of plundering the population and causing starvation by mismanagement. He reportedly killed himself aged 49.