Ardingly College () is an independent boarding
school near Ardingly
, West Sussex
, England. The school is a member of the Headmasters' and Headmistresses' Conference
and of the Woodard Corporation
of independent schools and as such has a strong Anglo-Catholic
It was originally a boarding school for boys, and became fully co-education
al in 1982.
For the academic year 2015/16, Ardingly charged day pupils up to £7,710 per term, making it the 29th most expensive Headmasters' and Headmistresses' Conference
(HMC) day school. It is a public school
in the British sense of the term (i.e. fee-paying). As of 2017, there are about 416 pupils enrolled at the school, aged between 13 and 18. Additionally, there are about 520 pupils aged from 2½ to 13 at the Ardingly College Preparatory school, with which it shares some grounds.
The school is regularly positioned amongst the top ten International Baccalaureate
(IB) schools in the United Kingdom, and has won the Royal Society of Chemistry
Top of the Bench Competition.
Ardingly played an important role in providing infantry throughout the 20th century conflicts, with around 1,200 Ardingly pupils going on to fight in the First World War
, 146 of whom were killed, along with two former members of staff. In addition, 88 Old Ardinians
died in World War II
; their names being recorded in a book of remembrance.
The school's former pupils – or "Old Ardinians
" – include four Conservative
MP's; satirist Ian Hislop
['HISLOP, Ian David', ''Who's Who 2016'', A & C Black, an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing plc, 2016]
; Formula One
World Champion Mike Hawthorn
; author Neil Gaiman
inventor John Paul Wild
; and Allard Motor Company
founder Sydney Allard
Ardingly College was founded as "St Saviour’s College", Shoreham
, in 1858 by Canon Nathaniel Woodard
whose aim was to provide education firmly grounded in the Christian
St Saviour's College opened on 12 April 1858, occupying the New Shoreham buildings in the lee of the churchyard of St Mary de Haura which had been vacated by another Woodard School
, Lancing College
, when it moved to its permanent home in April 1858.
The site at Shoreham however was never intended to be permanent and it was left to Woodard to scour the South of England for a suitable permanent location for St Saviour's School.
In 1861 Woodard came across the 196 acre (0.79 km²) Saucelands estate at the southern edge of Ardingly
village, which was acquired in 1862 for £6,000.
employed Richard Carpenter
as the school's architect, and the foundation stone at Ardingly was laid on 12 July 1864 by Granville Leveson-Gower, 2nd Earl Granville
St Saviour's College moved to the partially completed site at Ardingly
on 14 June 1870 when the new school was officially opened by the Bishop of Chichester
, with the inaugural sermon delivered by Samuel Wilberforce
Today Ardingly occupies a 420-acre (1.7 km²) site situated in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
Ardingly is divided into three autonomous schools, comprising a Pre-Preparatory School catering for pupils aged 2½ –7, Junior School catering for pupils aged 7–13 and Senior School for pupils aged 13–18.
Both Junior and Senior Schools accommodate boarders
who make up the majority of the Senior School student population.
All Junior and Senior School students are assigned to a boarding house
in which boarders
live and study and where day-pupils have study areas. In all, the college has approximately 750 pupils.
According to the Good Schools Guide
2008, Ardingly College has admitted more pupils this year than at any point in its history and places are at a premium.
The college's Combined Cadet Force
was established in 1902 in the wake of the Second Boer War
Around 1,200 Old Ardinians went on to fight in the First World War
, 146 of whom were killed, along with two former members of staff; their names are recorded on the war memorial in the college chapel.
In addition, 88 Old Ardinians died in the Second World War
; their names are recorded in a book of remembrance in the crypt
and on the memorial board in the Under.
In 1958 the school celebrated its centenary
. On 9 June 1958, as part of the celebrations, the Queen
and the Duke of Edinburgh
A stone plaque on the terrace parapet
commemorates the visit, where she "beheld the view".
Later that week, on 14 June 1958, the then Prime Minister
, Harold Macmillan
, visited the school to open the Centenary Building, which comprises the college cricket pavilion
and upstairs Centenary Room.
On 8 May 2008, the Duke of Kent
visited Ardingly as part of its sesquicentenary
celebrations and officially opened a new teaching block at the pre-preparatory school.
There are three academic terms in the year:
* The ''Michaelmas
term'', from early September to mid December. New pupils are now admitted only at the start of the Michaelmas Half, unless in exceptional circumstances.
* The ''Lent
term'', from mid-January to late March.
* The ''Trinity
term'', from late April to late June or early July.
Similarly, there are five academic years:
*"Shell", pupils in their first year at Ardingly (year 9).
*"Remove", pupils in their second year at Ardingly (year 10).
*"Fifth", pupils in their third year at Ardingly (year 11).
*"Lower Sixth", pupils in their fourth year at Ardingly (year 12) which start studying for their A levels
*"Upper Sixth", pupils in their fifth and last year at Ardingly (year 13).
In 2014, 65% of GCSE
entries were awarded A* or A grades. Since 2001 Ardingly has offered the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme
ers in addition to traditional A-Levels
In 2008 Ardingly was ranked 7th in the UK in The Independent's
league table of schools offering both an A-Level
curriculum. In 2012 44% of A-Level
entries were awarded A* or A grades, while IB
students averaged 38 points, equivalent to A*AAA at A-Level
. 18% of IB
students achieved 40 or more points putting them in the top 5% worldwide. In 2016, Ardingly's IB students averaged 39 points, placing it 9th on the table of schools in the United Kingdom
Ardingly has several sports available to both prep students and college students. Athletics
and cross country
, and fencing
are all open to prep students. The same set is offered for college students with the addition of badminton
, shooting, scuba diving
, and sailing
, and the exception of rounders, cross country, and swimming.
Ardingly have won the Independent Schools Football Association
Cup three times: in 1997–98, 2014–15 and 2015–16, only behind Millfield
who have been proclaimed champions four times. It is also the first school in history to have won both the Elgin Southern League trophy and the ISFA Cup as well as being the second to have won two consecutive ISFA cups.
Chapel of St Saviour
The Grade II listed chapel bears the historical name of the school, being laid the foundation stone 12 July 1864. The architects were R. H. Carpenter
and William Slater
. The structures are in Gothic Revival
style in red brick and tiled rooftops. The chapel possesses the east end of the mid block, having four bays each containing a glass-stained window of Decorated sort. It stretches out into a further two narrows east of the west wing. Over the rooftop there is a bell tower.
In 1976, cartoonist Nick Newman
was expelled from Ardingly in his last term of Upper Sixth for wiring the Chapel to play rock music
during a school Mass
* 1858–1894 Frederick Mertens
* 1894–1904 Francis Hilton
* 1904–1911 Herbert Rhodes
* 1911–1914 Marchant Pearson
* 1915–1932 Thomas Wilson
* 1933–1946 Ernest Crosse
* 1947–1961 George Snow
* 1962–1980 Christopher Bulteel
* 1980–1998 James Flecker
* 1998–2007 John Franklin
* 2007–2014 Peter Green
* 2014– Ben Figgis
Ardingly College Lodge
The school has its own Masonic lodge
, Ardingly College Lodge, which is a member of the Public School Lodges council.
The lodge, which is open to male Old Ardinians as well as those with an affiliation to the college, was founded in 1922 by the then headmaster, Thomas Erskine Wilson, together with masters, the Provost
of the school and the Bishop of Lewes
Freemasonry at Ardingly takes its form from the Enlightenment in England
during the 18th century, and shares characteristics with charitable organization
s. It provides a common meeting place for Old Ardinian men with similar interests.
Combined Cadet Force
The Ardingly College Combined Cadet Force
, or CCF, has existed in its various forms since 1902, with the outbreak of the Second Boer War
. The Ardingly College CCF is split into six categories. These are Army, Royal Navy, Royal Air Force, Royal Marines, Drum Corps and Marching Band. The Army section is affiliated to the Princess of Wales's Royal Regiment
, allowing cadets to take part in military and adventure training not readily available to non-cadets.
Ardingly Solar Car
Ardingly is one of the very few schools that take part in the World Solar Challenge
, a biennial solar-powered car race
. The school's students worked in the project for three years, achieving to complete the race 23 October 2015.
The current patron of Ardingly Solar is Prince Albert II
As of the academic year 2020/21, Shell–5th boarding
fees are £34,935 per annum while Shell–5th day
fees are £23,985 per annum. Sixth form boarding
fees are £35,865 per annum, while Sixth form day
fees are £23,985 per annum.
The school was featured in the second episode of the BBC
series ''Stiff Upper Lip: An emotional History of Britain'', where the protagonist Ian Hislop
returns to Ardingly, his former school, to describe his experiences there as well as the impact of the British public school
system in shaping men in Victorian era
In February 2014, the BBC confirmed that several fossils had been discovered at the school grounds. The remains were found by staff and pupils during the construction of a new boarding house for girls. According to the Natural History Museum
and Imperial College
, some of these bones were around 140 million years old.
Notable former pupils include four former Conservative
MPs, ''Private Eye
'' editor Ian Hislop
, author Neil Gaiman
, band leader Victor Silvester
, Formula One
World Champion Mike Hawthorn
, and Crufts
dog show founder Charles Cruft
Fictional Old Ardinians include Tim Nice-But-Dim
from ''The Nearly Complete and Utter History of Everything
''.Ardinian creation – Telegraph
Southern Railway V Schools class
The school lent its name to the eighteenth steam locomotive (Engine 917) in the Southern Railway's Class V of which there were 40.
This class was also known as the Schools Class because all 40 of the class were named after prominent English public schools. ''Ardingly'', as it was called, was built in 1934 and withdrawn in 1962.
*Argent, N; Ardingly College 1939–1990. Autolycus Press (1991)
*Gibbs, D; A School with a View: A History of Ardingly College 1858–2008. James & James Publishers Ltd (2008)
*Letts, S; Ardingly: Its Building and Buildings. Old Ardinians Society (1985)
*Perry, R; Ardingly 1858–1946: A History of the School. Old Ardinians Society (1951)
*List of SR V "Schools" class locomotives
*Ardingly Green (#01613a), seal brown (#59260B) and mellow yellow (#FDEE00).
Ardingly College website
Category:Anglo-Catholic educational establishments
Category:Educational institutions established in 1858
Category:Member schools of the Headmasters' and Headmistresses' Conference
Category:Boarding schools in West Sussex
Category:Independent schools in West Sussex
Category:International Baccalaureate schools in England
Category:1858 establishments in England
Category:Church of England independent schools in the Diocese of Chichester