Hall Grove is a popular day prep school for around 400 students with a family-vibe and close-knit community that is built on its small size, outdoor education, and high academic standards.
Students gain regular academic and sporting scholarships to leading public schools across the South, including Bradfield College, Caterham, Charterhouse, Tonbridge, Eton, Hampton, Harrow, St George’s College Weybridge, Wellington College, Westminster, and Whitgift. They perform well on the sports field. And students in the choir make regular appearances on Radio 4 and in the Royal Albert Hall.
Founded on a strong set of family values, the school is owned by the Graham family who bought the main house in 1956 to start a school with just six students. Today, Hall Grove has a very close-knit community of over 400 boys and girls aged four to 11 years. The founder’s son, who was headmaster until last year, continues to oversee the running of the school as principal.
Life here is very outdoorsy too. Hall Grove has some fantastic outdoor facilities, including its own golf course, mountain bike track, outdoor woodland classrooms, and a riding centre – all within the school grounds in Bagshot. A beautifully restored walled garden provides opportunities for all the children to learn about horticulture, and there is a small school farm with a resident flock of sheep.
It’s a kind and caring school where family is very much part of the community; events including Grandparents Day bring everyone together. There’s also a strong house system led by Year 8 students, which sees boys and girls across all year groups working together, and competing against each other.
Headmaster Neil Tomlin OBE is a newcomer to Hall Grove having joined the school in September 2021/ He joined the school following a career in the British Army, receiving an Officer of the British Empire award for Commanding Officer from 4th battalion, the Royal Regiment of Scotland. He’s said to have a passion for education, outdoor learning and pastoral development, and as Governor of Port Regis Prep School and Milton Abbey, and he has hands-on experience of working withing Prep and Senior schools.
Commenting on his appointment as Head, Mr Tomlin said:
“My career of public service to date has provided a strong foundation for my role as Headmaster of Hall Grove and I look forward to combining my leadership experience with my genuine passion for education and the development of people. I feel very privileged to be given the opportunity to lead such a wonderful school.”
The school teaches by its motto to 'Do what is right', which lays the foundations for a broad and balanced curriculum that is enriched through outdoor pursuits and performing arts. It’s a rigorous curriculum that prepares students for both Common Entrance and Senior School entrance exams, but it’s also filled with plenty of fun, enjoyment and adventure. The school takes full advantage of its vast grounds to bring the learning outdoors.
From Early Years onwards, students are offered a strong start to their education with that includes weekly specialist sessions in dance, PE, music and French, as well as many hours given to outdoor learning. New subjects such as DT, art and the humanities are introduced from Year 3, and there are lessons in current affairs, drama and performance from Year 5.
In Years 5-6, the focus is very much on giving students the skills in English, maths and sciences that is needed for success in exams for senior school. Students who stay on for Years 7 and 8 move onto an even broader 13+ curriculum with lessons in Greek and computing, as well as the three separate sciences. It’s a solid preparation for Common Entrance and, in some cases, scholarship exams.
Classics are a strength here, and students achieve top grades in Latin and Greek. Science, technology and the performing arts are also very popular subjects.
Outdoor learning is seen as essential to a complete education here, and the school has outdoor woodland classrooms, a beautifully restored walled garden where students to learn about horticulture, and a small school farm with a resident flock of sheep.
Every child at Hall Grove takes part in sport, dance, drama, art and music. It’s all seen as an important part of a well-rounded education.
There’s a team of 14 specialist teachers, delivering over 200 individual music lessons every week; a resident dance teacher holding weekly lessons for Pre-School through to Year 8. There also plans to open a Hall Grove Dance Academy, which will offer graded exams in ballet, tap and modern for all ages.
The major games for boys are football, rugby, hockey and cricket, and for girls it’s netball, hockey, lacrosse and cricket. Other sports offered include gymnastics, basketball, judo, cross-country running, tennis, golf, canoeing, athletics and swimming. There are competitive sports matches from Year 3 and several after-school sports clubs.
From Year 4, students spend memorable days at the school’s own residential field study centre, Battisborough House, on the South Devon coast. Located within six acres of grounds there’s a hard tennis court, riding arena, football field, badminton and croquet lawn, and woodland for plenty of outdoor learning and adventure. Students also visit the neighbouring dairy farm to learn about farming.
The school has its own riding stables with ponies on-site, and a Pony Grove club is run by an experienced mother registered with both The British Horse Society and The Pony Club as a qualified instructor. Lessons held in a 40m x 20m all-weather arena, and children can go for hacks around the school's 35 acres; there is also a dedicated cross country jumping field.
Hall Grove also offers an extended day option until 7.30pm, where students can sign up to a performing arts project each term or activities including fencing, shooting, chess, judo and creative textiles.
Students can board from Years 4-8, and Hall Grove offers a very small but flexible boarding programme for up to 14 children per night from Monday to Thursday during term time. This facility is open to children from Year 4 upwards (younger siblings below Y4 can be accommodated by special arrangement). Options include flexi-boarding, weekly boarding or an overnight stay in dormitories located within the main school building above the Headmaster's private accommodation.
Formerly a small Georgian country estate, this co-ed prep school is set within mature parkland in Surrey. There’s a community of over 400 boys and girls here, and 40 acres of land to explore. Historical features include an ice-house, lake, woodland walks, rhododendrons and azaleas. The walled garden is home to apples and pears, a fruit cage, a newly planted vinery (the school hopes to harvest its very own Hall Grove wine in the future!)
Hall Grove has created some beautiful, inspiring places to learn. Students in Years 5-6 have lessons in purpose-built Scandinavian log cabins, and there’s a dedicated early years building, The Barn. Specialist teaching facilities include a junior technology room, and rooms for food technology, ceramics, woodwork, drama and art.
The key points of entry are Pre-prep, Reception, Year 3 and Year 7. Students are assessed in English and maths for places in Year 3 and above. Annual day fees range from £12,000 to £16,650.
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