Headmaster's Welcome

Ashdown House Prep School is one of the leading co-educational, boarding and day, preparatory schools in the country, catering for boys and girls between 4 and 13. Founded in 1843, it is also one of the oldest. Situated on the edge of the beautiful Ashdown Forest in Sussex, its stunning rural situation belies the fact that it is in the busy south-east of England within easy reach of London, the coast and both Gatwick & Heathrow Airports.

We are proud to be offering your child an exciting, challenging and stimulating education. Our scholarship record speaks volumes for the quality of teaching and all children successfully pass into the leading public schools of their choice. As part of The Cothill Educational Trust, we are excited at being able to offer the experience of visits to the Château de Sauveterre in France.

We believe, however, that there should be much more than academic rigour in the classroom. Whether it is climbing trees, a game of chess, taking the resident dogs and ponies for a walk, building dens, looking after the chickens and turkeys, being creative in the Art or DT Rooms, composing a hit pop song (and rehearsing with the band) or digging a personal vegetable plot, opportunities abound: freedom and variety are so important in encouraging independent thought and responsibility in children.

A school that has a caring and nurturing ethos, both between staff and children, and importantly between the children themselves, is essential for the happiness and development of your child. At Ashdown we strive to maintain the right balance so that your child will thoroughly enjoy and benefit from his or her time here. Whilst we base our ethos on sound Christian morals, we welcome children from all denominations and none. Blessed with magnificent and extensive grounds, we offer the main sports and compete successfully against local prep schools and in National tournaments. Our Art, DT, Music and Drama Departments are equally successful with each year group putting on at least one play a year and nearly every child in the school learning at least one instrument. The opportunity for children to be creative is essential.

Most of the pupils join us either in the pre prep or in Years 3, 4 & 5 as day children though a few continue to start as boarders in Year 3. Many start flexi boarding soon after arrival and then convert to full boarding further up the school. We welcome both day, flexi and full boarding pupils and ensure that the boarding community have a very full programme of activities when their day peers are not at school – so much so that many a day child pleads to become a boarder!

The photos and information on this website will give you an idea of what we achieve at Ashdown. A visit to the School is strongly recommended and I am positive that, after experiencing the warmth and happiness of the children and staff, you will leave confident that Ashdown has something very special about it.

We very much look forward to meeting you.

Haydon Moore

If you have any comments to make, or wish to be sent a prospectus, please fill in our on-line form. We will deal with your request as quickly as we can. Please visit the ISC and ISI websites for more information on the school including our latest inspection report (2012).