Competitive Independent Schools: A Full List


Independent, or private, schools are fee paying schools which don’t receive any funding from the government. There are approximately 2400 independent schools currently operating in the country.


Fees typically range from £5,000 to £40,000 per year.


Luckily, an increasing number of large and small independent schools offer means-tested bursarial support to families of candidates applying for entry, which in some cases cover the full tuition fees, plus extras. Aside from that, many schools award scholarships to the top-performing applicants in their entrance exams, which may range from 10% to 50% of the full fees.



But are there any real benefits of enrolling your child in an independent school? 



Here are a few of the main ones:


  • Most independent schools provide excellent pastoral care. Once a child is admitted and starts attending lessons, the staff begin to actively engage in providing the best possible environment for their academic and personal growth, centred on an individualised approach towards their learning needs.


  • Most independent schools make a wide range of extracurricular activities accessible to students in order to boost their broader skills and abilities, as well as to help them discover new interests and talents.


  • Many extracurricular programmes include cross-border trips to exotic destinations, through which independent schools aim to maximise pupils’ cultural awareness and broaden their horizons.


  • Most independent schools invest a lot of effort into maintaining their ethos, which often is as old as the school itself. This typically revolves around values such as compassion, integrity and tolerance whilst encouraging independent thought and promoting a sense of personal responsibility amongst students.


  • Most independent schools maintain strong ties with their notable alumni, which could include  Nobel Laureates, doctors, inventors and widely successful authors and athletes, thus inspiring current students and providing them with a powerful network they can tap into.


  • Most independent schools offer cutting-edge facilities and methods of teaching, leading to solid exam results and offers at the country’s top universities.



If you wish to learn more about the finest independent schools in the country, click on the links below to uncover details about their history, curriculum, admissions process and entrance exams:



Abbot’s Hill School

Abercorn School

Abingdon Prep

Abingdon School

Ackworth School

AKS Lytham

Aldenham School

Alderley Edge School for Girls

Aldro School

Aldwickbury School

Alleyn’s School

Alton School

Ardingly College

Arnold Lodge School

Ashford School

Ashville College

Babington House School

Bablake School

Badminton School

Bancroft’s School

Barnard Castle School

Bedales (Dunhurst) School

Bede’s (Prep) School

Bedford Girls’ School

Bedford Modern School

Bedford School

Beechwood Sacred Heart School

Belmont (Mill Hill) School

Benenden School

Berkhamsted School

Bethany School

Birkdale School

Birkenhead School

Bishop’s Stortford College

Blackheath High School

Bloxham School

Blundell’s School

Bolton School

Bootham School

Bournemouth Collegiate School

Box Hill School 

Bradfield College 13+

Bradford Grammar School

Braeside School

Brentwood School

Bridgewater School

Brighton College

Brighton College 13+

Brighton Girls

Bristol Grammar School

Bromley High School

Bromsgrove School

Bryanston School 13+

Burgess Hill Girls

Bury Grammar School

Canford School 13+

Caterham School

Channing School

Charterhouse School 13+

Cheadle Hulme School

Cheltenham College

Cheltenham Ladies’ College

Cheltenham Ladies’ College 13+

Chesham Prep School

Chigwell School

Christ’s Hospital

Christ College, Brecon

Churcher’s College

City of London Freemen’s School

City of London School

City of London School for Girls

Claremont Fan Court School

Clayesmore School

Clifton College

Clifton High School

Cobham Hall

Cokethorpe School 

Colfe’s School

Colston’s School

Cranford House School

Cranleigh School

Croydon High School

Culford School

D’Overbroeck’s College

Dame Allan’s School

Dauntsey’s School

Dean Close

Denstone College

Derby Grammar School

Derby High School

Ditcham Park School

Dixie Grammar School

Downe House School

Dulwich College

Dunottar School

Durham High School for Girls

Durham School

Eastbourne College 13+

Eaton (Holme) Grange School

Eaton Square Mayfair

Edgbaston High School for Girls

Elizabeth College, Guernsey 

Ellesmere College 

Eltham College



Epsom College

Eton College 13+

Ewell Castle School

Exeter School

Farlington School 

Farnborough Hill 

Felsted School

Forest School

Framlingham College

Francis Holland School (NW1)

Francis Holland School (SW1)

Frensham Heights School

Gad’s Hill School

Giggleswick School

Godolphin and Latymer School

Godolphin School

Gresham’s School

Guildford High School

Haberdashers’ Monmouth Schools

Haberdashers’ Aske’s Boys’ School

Haberdashers’ Aske’s School for Girls

Haileybury School

Halliford School

Hampton Court House School

Hampton School

Hampton School 10+

Harrogate Ladies’ College

Harrow School 13+

Headington School

Heathfield School, Ascot

Heathfield School, Ascot 13+

Hereford Cathedral School

Highclare School

Highgate School

Hill House School, Doncaster 

Hipperholme Grammar School

Howell’s School, Llandaff

Huddersfield Grammar School

Hull Collegiate School

Hulme Hall Grammar School

Hurstpierpoint Prep School

Hymers College

Ibstock Place School

Immanuel College, Bushey

Ipswich High School

Ipswich School

James Allen’s Girls’ School

Jersey College for Girls

Junior King’s School

Kensington Park School

Kent College, Canterbury

Kent College, Pembury

Kew House School

Kimbolton School

King’s College School, Wimbledon 13+

King’s Ely Junior School

King’s Hall School

King Edward’s School, Birmingham

King Edward’s School, Witley

King Edward VI High School for Girls

King Edward VI School, Southampton

King Edward’s School, Bath

Kingham Hill School

King Henry VIII School, Coventry

Kingston Grammar School

Kingswood School 

King’s College Lower School

King’s High

King’s Rochester School

King’s Worcester 

Kirkham Grammar School

Kirkstone House School

Lady Eleanor Holles School

Lancing College 13+

Latymer Upper School

Leehurst Swan School

Leicester Grammar School

Leicester High School for Girls

Leighton Park School

Lewes Old Grammar School

Leweston School

Lingfield College 

Long Close School

Lord Wandsworth College

Loughborough Grammar School

Loughborough High School

Luckley House School

Magdalen College School

Maida Vale School

Malvern College 13+

Malvern St James Girls’ School

Manchester Grammar School

Manchester High School for Girls

Manor House School, Bookham 

Mayfield School

Mayville High School, Southsea 

Meoncross School 

Merchant Taylors’ School, Crosby

Merchant Taylors’ School, Northwood

Merchant Taylors’ School, Northwood 13+

Millfield School

Milton Abbey School 13+

Monkton Combe School

More House School

Moreton Hall 

Mount House School

Mount Kelly College

Mount St Mary’s College

Myddelton College

Newcastle High School for Girls

Newcastle School for Boys

Newcastle-under-Lyme School

New Hall School

Normanhurst School

Northampton High

North Bridge House Senior, Canonbury

North Bridge House Senior, Hampstead

North London Collegiate School

Northwood College

Norwich High School for Girls

Norwich School

Notre Dame School

Nottingham Girls’ High School

Nottingham High School

Notting Hill and Ealing High School

Oakham School

Ockbrook School

Oldham Hulme Grammar School

Old Palace Croydon School

Oundle School

Our Lady of Sion School

Our Lady’s Abingdon School

Oxford High School

Palmers Green High School 

Pangbourne College

Park School for Girls

Pipers Corner School

Plymouth College 

Pocklington School

Portland Place School

Portsmouth High School

Princess Helena College

Princethorpe College

Prior’s Field

Prior Park College

Priory School

Putney High School

Queen’s College

Queen Anne’s School, Caversham

Queen Anne’s School, Caversham 13+

Queen Elizabeth’s Hospital

Queen Elizabeth Grammar School (QEGS)

Queen Ethelburga’s Collegiate

Queen Margaret’s School, York 

Queenswood School

Queen’s College London

Queen’s Gate School

Quinton House School

Radley College

Ratcliffe College

Reading Blue Coat School

Redmaids’ High School

Reed’s School

Reigate Grammar School

Rendcomb College

Repton School 13+


Royal Grammar School, Guildford

Royal Grammar School, Newcastle

Royal Grammar School, Worcester

Royal High School Bath

Royal Hospital School

Royal Russell School

Ryde School with Upper Chine

School of St Helen & St Katharine

Seaford College

Seaford College 13+

Sedbergh School

Sevenoaks School

Sherborne School

Shiplake College 

Silcoates School 

Sir William Perkin’s School

Solihull School

South Hampstead High School

St. Albans High School for Girls

St. Albans School

St. Bede’s College

St. Catherine’s School

St. Columba’s College, St Albans

St. Dunstan’s College 

St. Edmund’s College

St. Edmund’s School, Canterbury

St. Gabriel’s School

St. Georges Weybridge

St. Helen’s School

St. James Senior Girls’ School

St. John’s School, Leatherhead

St. Margaret’s School, Hampstead

St. Mary’s College, Crosby

St. Mary’s Calne

St. Mary’s School Ascot

St. Michael’s School

St. Paul’s Girls’ School

St. Paul’s Juniors (formerly Colet Court)

St. Swithun’s School

St. Swithun’s School 13+

Stamford High School 

Stamford School 

Stockport Grammar School

Stonyhurst St. Mary’s Hall

Stowe School 13+

Surbiton High School

Sutton High

Sutton Valence School

Sydenham High School

The Abbey School

The Cathedral School, Llandaff

The Grammar School at Leeds

The Grange School

The Harrodian School 

The John Lyon School

The King’s School, Chester

The King’s School, Gloucester

The King’s School, Macclesfield

The Leys School

The Oratory School

The Perse School

The Portsmouth Grammar School

The Queen’s School, Chester

The Royal Masonic School for Girls

The Stephen Perse Foundation

Tonbridge School 13+

Trent College

Trinity School

Truro School

University College School

Uppingham School 13+

Wakefield Girls’ High School

Walthamstow Hall

Warminster School

Warwick School

Wellingborough School

Wellington College 13+

Wellington School 

Wells Cathedral School

West Buckland School

Westfield School, Newcastle upon Tyne

Westminster Under School

Wetherby Senior School

Whitgift School

Wimbledon High School

Winchester College 13+

Wisbech Grammar School 

Withington Girls’ School

Woldingham School 

Woldingham School 13+

Woldingham School 13+ (deferred entry)

Wolverhampton Grammar School 

Woodbridge School

Woodhouse Grove School

Worth School

Worth School 13+

Wrekin College

Wycombe Abbey

Yarm School



The information provided about independent schools was believed to be correct at the time of publishing. However, please be aware of future changes. We advise you to contact the school directly if you are unsure of anything. School contact details are provided within the posts.



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