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South West Prep feeder to Winchester College

(32 Posts)
Doloresvivamarie Fri 06-Jun-14 20:20:50

Can anyone recommend a boarding prep school in the South West that feeds Winchester College?

DS is not sporty, very bright and sensitive. Please no schools with a 'jock' culture.

Thank you.

summerends Fri 06-Jun-14 20:30:30

Not sure about jock culture but Horris Hill and Pilgrim's spring to mind. Personally I think it is healthy to have a mix of personalities including sporting as long as no particular type stifles another type from being themselves.

Sunnyshores Fri 06-Jun-14 20:31:24

In my experience Prep schools dont really feed a particular Private Senior - especially a top one like Winchester where children will come from all over UK.

With entry being at 13(?) and wanting a boarding prep your choices may be reduced to a manageable number - plough through Good Schools Guide.
I'd also phone Admissions and ask if there are more popular Preps.

CharlesRyder Fri 06-Jun-14 20:38:03

How old is he? Does he have to board? If he does why does it have to be in the South West?

Pilgrims is the obvious answer to you question.

summerends Fri 06-Jun-14 22:14:37

I presume that 'feeds' in this case means a school that successfully prepares a number of boys each year for Winchester entrance. I am not sure if this is still the case but Horris Hill had a better reputation for boarding although of course the music is very strong at Pilgrims.

Doloresvivamarie Fri 06-Jun-14 22:56:12

Thanks, I will look at those boarding schools. Interested to see that Horris Hill good for boarding. DS is 10 and would board from 11.

A friend has suggested Sandroyd. Does anyone know this school?

A very sporty school puts me off (perhaps unfairly due to present school experience) as DS has two left feet so I need an environment where sport is just one of many defining parts of one's personality. His present school has a real jock culture. Boys define themselves by sporting prowess. DS is very academic, but that appears to be of little value.

I want the prep boarding school for DS from 11, where boys value themselves in many different ways, other than just sport. It must be an academic school because DS is bright and a bit quirky. Has a very questioning personality.

Dolores x

happygardening Fri 06-Jun-14 23:02:46

I'm not sure Newbury or Winchester are exactly south west what about Port Regis? I have to say I don't know anything about it but a friend knows it well and likes it.

aufweidersehenpet Fri 06-Jun-14 23:20:56

Although not technically in the SW - Twyford School, just outside Winchester has boarders. The school 'feeds' Winchester College and other prestigious establishments.

eatyourveg Sat 07-Jun-14 07:48:57

Another vote for Pilgrims being the obvious answer

summerends Sat 07-Jun-14 10:04:47

HG southwest is always a relative term for me smile but you are absolutely right. Not sure about PortRegis, I always get the impression it is quite a sporty school and might not send very many to Winchester.
I hear Twyford's has a different atmosphere to Horris Hill and Pilgrims.
One issue with Pilgrim's is that it being so close to Winchester College might remove some of the excitement of senior school transition.

grovel Sat 07-Jun-14 18:26:15

Forres Sandle Manor?

TalkinPeace Sat 07-Jun-14 21:10:55

Pilgrims is the local feeder for Winohester : friends' kids from there have sailed in with no extra preparation

Twyford is more sporty
Port Regis is very rural so its range rover culture (if the mums do not get on, the kids will not meet)

Jerm123 Sun 08-Jun-14 16:27:55

Hi, Pilgrims' send about half the year to Winchester- sometimes just over and sometimes just under.
It also has a more tangible link in that it educates the Quiresters, who are officially on roll at the College. These are the trebles for the College chapel choir.
There may be other schools who send more boys to WC (although it must be marginal) but I doubt if any send a higher percentage.
Pilgrims have just been through several changes at the top and my experience is from several years ago.
My son enjoyed the school and it worked well for him. He is not particularly sporty - enjoyed the occasional game of football, but that's about it. He boarded from year 6. A word of caution, most boarders get taken out from after lessons on Sat to Sun night/Mon morning. A large number get a visit on Wednesday afternoon as well.

Doloresvivamarie Mon 09-Jun-14 18:09:50

Thanks, everyone, for your comments.

Really useful!

I shall be visiting some of the schools.

Kind regards


4happyhours Tue 10-Jun-14 11:23:05

We have been over the moon with the level of care our DS has had in prep for CE at The Elms, Malvern. He's been sitting for Eton, but they have a scholarship set and line the kids up well. It's just been the best school we could have had him at, and we are not easy customers as we are in education ourselves. The Headmaster, Mr Thomas, is brilliant, and the school is small enough to look after them all really well. I'd definitely have a look.

happygardening Wed 11-Jun-14 07:12:45

According to their website the Elms haven't sent a boy to Win Coll. Of course this doesn't mean they couldn't adequately prepare a pupil but from experience I think it's better to send him to a prep that has some experience of preparing for their entrance exam (Win Coll doesn't use CE but writes it's own entrance exams).

agnesgrey Sat 14-Jun-14 22:35:51

HG / Summerends are right in that that is no "feeder school" in the sense that if you go that school you will get in to WinColl.

DS at Winchester - the schools which in his opinion send most to WC are Twyfords , Pilgrims . Horris Hill. However - my DS went to a different school - a good school and they prepared him well.

weepootle Thu 31-Jul-14 09:21:40

happygardening, you said you don't know anything about Port Regis, yet last year you claimed you had inside info on it and they were struggling to fill vacancies confused.

happygardening Thu 31-Jul-14 09:31:37

Yes that's true I did get that inside information but what I meant and didn't make very clear was that I don't personally know much about the sporting pastoral care side of it although the inside person providing the information about it talked highly of it.

weepootle Thu 31-Jul-14 15:11:42

Thanks for clearing that up, I just happened to come across this one straight after reading the other thread and was surprised to see you suggest it when I thought you sounded negative towards it previously.

happygardening Thu 31-Jul-14 16:04:26

The person who gave me the inside info was very much in the know. She had also in the past sent her daughter there, she talked well of it although admitted it had changed since her DD left but was concerned (for her employment) that the numbers were falling. Frankly the numbers in most small boarding preps away from a sensible commute for London are dropping, many are increasingly becoming day preps or offering flexi boarding. It's inevitable that the vast majority or parents who not only want a boarding prep and it's now considerable fees but also are to afford the very considerable fees charged by senior boarding schools are likely to live in London and the Home Counties. The former has many excellent day preps the latter many excellent boarding preps, few parents living in a London or the Home Counties are likely to have the time or inclination to flog off to Dorset on a regular basis thud the decline in numbers.

grovel Thu 31-Jul-14 17:08:30

My DH's prep school was in Dorset. At the time there were four boarding preps within three miles (two in Langton Matravers, two in Swanage). All have now closed. They "took" extra carriages on trains from Waterloo.

happygardening Thu 31-Jul-14 17:22:24

Extra carriages those were the days!

grovel Thu 31-Jul-14 18:12:07

There were no exeats in those days. Half term was a week-end (at school) when parents were allowed to take their children out during the day time.

Imagine how the new boys felt getting into a carriage of 80 other boys who all knew each other. Awful.

My MiL who would never go into a pub alone (or with other women) broke that rule at the beginning of every term. A load of mums would congregate in the pub at Waterloo (The Drum) and console each other over large brandies.

There was this sad countdown at the end of every holidays. Three days before term started the boys' trunks were sent ahead (by train - Passenger Luggage in Advance). As soon as the trunk left home the boys knew their time was limited.

My DH loved prep school. Bizarre.

happygardening Thu 31-Jul-14 19:53:47

So many of course sadly have this idea that boarding hasn't changed and that all who boarded were miserable.
What you describe is incomprehensible to current boarders of all ages.

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