Prep sports day

House System

Building collaboration and community

Our house system encourages student camaraderie and a genuine sense of belonging. Through friendly competition, our boys work together as a connected cohort and forge lifelong friendships.

Each boy belongs to one of four houses, named after our founding fathers, described in more detail below. The houses are:

  • Taylor
  • Watsford
  • Waterhouse
  • Cotton

Our boys contribute their unique talents to represent their house in a range of activities across academics, sport, service and co-curricular. While the competition is strong, it encourages our boys to try their best as part of their overall team endeavour.

PC 08122 1 P4 A5637 PC 08118 1 P4 A5544 1 P4 A5501 1 P4 A5471 2

The house system gives our boys responsibility and creates a community to which each boy knows they belong.

When we award the Wesley Cup to the winning house, boys from all houses join together to celebrate their achievements, demonstrating the good sportsmanship and character we nurture as part of the all-round education of our Princes Men.

Houses 0002 Taylor


Taylor House is named for William Taylor, a man who was most influential in the founding of the school. A Methodist bishop from the United States, and known as California Taylor from his work in the streets of California, especially on the goldfields where he was a ‘social conscience’ willing to tackle and social issue in any place. Taylor was an inspirational missionary in many countries, from Africa to the Caribbean to South Asia to Europe to Australia. He began many churches and encouraged educational opportunities in these countries. His visit to Australia and Adelaide in 1865 was pivotal in the launching of a Methodist school in Adelaide through his advocacy and his profound influence on Thomas Greaves Waterhouses’s decision to provide substantial gifts and guarantees which made it possible for Prince Alfred College to move from a dream to a reality. Taylor house is represented by a wyvern, a dragon with two legs and an armed tail. It was the symbol used by John Wesley and stands for valour and protection. Taylor House is, therefore a place for those who would be willing to stand up and be counted, and who seek to support other members of their house.

Houses 0000 Watsford


Watsford house is named for John Watsford, a founder of the school. Watsford, the son of a horse stealer convict who was pardoned after his conversion to Methodism, was the first Australian born Wesleyan minister. Before being sent to Adelaide in 1862, Watsford spent twenty years as a minister in Fiji and New South Wales. In 1868 he was ‘sent’ to Victoria where he continued significant ministry eventually becoming President o the Australian Wesleyan General Conference in 1878. Watsford served as minister for the two most prestigious churches (Pirie St and Archer St) and as Chairman of the SA district of the Wesleyan Methodist Church. Watsford chaired the steering committee and called it together to make the decision to buy the land and eventually establish Prince Alfred College. Watsford House is represented by a stallion, a symbol of one ready to do all that is required for his school and the house. The stallion is also a symbol of one who leads and is willing to put himself on the line for the sake of others.

Houses 0001 Waterhouse


Waterhouse is named for Thomas Greaves Waterhouse, a founder of the school. More than any other individual donor, Waterhouse’s efforts made possible the existence of Prince Alfred College. The Waterhouse Wing of the main building is named after the man, and he contributed to its construction with a 2 for 1 subsidy. Together with Cotton, Waterhouse was responsible for the development of building plans. In responding to the fervent preaching of William Taylor, Waterhouse made a public profession of his Wesleyan Methodist faith. Taylor had been told that if he came and preached for a week in the unfinished Pirie Street chapel ‘we will get Thomas Waterhouse converted to God and he will help us pay the debt on the church, and he will build us a college..’ Waterhouse made the prayers come true. In ill health, Waterhouse returned to England in 1868 still holding mortgages from his financial support to the school. A portrait of Waterhouse has hung above the fireplace in the Headmasters office since 1878. Waterhouse is represented by an eagle, a symbol of strength, bravery, alertness and judiciousness. Waterhouse is a house where one would expect those qualities to be very much in evidence.

Houses 0003 Cotton


Cotton House is named for George Witherage Cotton, One of the founders of the school. A land agent, Cotton was a member of the College Committee and alerted it to the imminent sale of land where PAC now stands. Cotton successfully bid on behalf of the Committee. Cotton was the first secretary of the College Committee and Prince Alfred College. He served form 1865 to 1886. Cotton was involved in the selection of the first headmaster and was jointly involved in the development of building plans. On his retirement from the College Committee an illuminated address was presented to him and it is now in the possession of the school. A portrait of George Cotton hangs in the Main building of the school. Cotton House is represented by a Lion. This symbolises the strength, courage and leadership that the school experienced from GW Cotton, and members of the Cotton House can also be people who provide strength, courage and leadership within the school.