Headmaster's Welcome

Ashdown House Prep School is a leading co-educational, boarding and day, preparatory school, catering for boys and girls between 4 and 13.

Situated on the edge of the beautiful Ashdown Forest in Sussex, it is a magical place where children strive, learn, laugh and thrive. They enjoy an education that is exciting, challenging and that offers a wonderful breadth of opportunity.

Our scholarship record speaks volumes for the quality of teaching and all pupils are expertly prepared for entry into the leading public schools of their choice. As part of The Cothill Trust, we are also excited to offer the experience of visits to the Château de Sauveterre in France, providing an added richness to the children’s learning.

There is a tremendous sense of community spirit in every aspect of school life at Ashdown. Children are encouraged to express themselves with confidence. Whether it is climbing trees, playing chess, taking the resident dogs and ponies for a walk, building dens, looking after the chickens, being creative in the Art or DT Rooms, composing a hit pop song or digging a personal vegetable plot, opportunities abound outside the classroom. Children have the time and space to make the most of their varied days and this plays a vital part in encouraging them to be independent and thoughtful of others.

Ashdown House has a justified reputation for its caring and nurturing reputation, between staff and children, and between the children themselves. We see this as an essential ingredient in the happiness and development of your child.

We are proud to base our ethos on sound Christian morals, and we also welcome children from all denominations and none. Blessed with magnificent and extensive grounds, we coach the major sports and compete successfully against local prep schools and in National tournaments; you will find our teams are encouragingly competitive! 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 opportunities for children to be creative are as boundless as their own interests, enthusiasm and passion.

Ashdown’s 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.

Children may join the school as boarders or day pupils. Many enter the Pre-Prep or in Years 3 and 4 as day children while some wish to start directly as boarders at the traditional entry point of Year 3 / Year 4. Flexi-boarding is extremely popular and many children take up this option soon after arrival before converting to full boarding further up the school. We welcome both day, flexi and full boarding pupils and ensure that the boarding community has a very full programme of activities when their day peers are not at school – so much so that the majority of day pupils plead to board!

I do hope you will enjoy looking through the photos and information on this website which will give you a glimpse of what goes on at Ashdown House. It would be a pleasure to introduce you to pupils and staff, and to discuss how we would welcome your son or daughter into the community, to nurture and inspire them in their academic and personal development in the time ahead.

Isabelle, the staff and I very much look forward to meeting you.

Mike Davies

Headmaster