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The most popular country prep schools for TBS clients

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Knight Frank
London and Country specialist property buying agents
20 Apr 2017  |   Jonathan Bramwell

A multi-ethnic group of elementary age children are playing soccer together at the park. A child is dribbling the ball up the field.

Tens of thousands of children failed to get into their first-choice primary school on national offer day in England last year; in London, where demand for places is highest, one in six families didn’t get a place for their child at their preferred primary. For those unlucky families, a number will consider moving out of London to be near a good, country prep school.

At any time of year, however, at least half of our buyers who are moving out of London to the countryside are motivated by schools. As London independent day schools become more and more competitive–with children as young as four and five being subjected to weekly tutoring for 7+, 8+ and the dreaded 11+ exam (often said to be more stressful than A levels), the option of extracting children from the hot-house environment and letting them have a more well-rounded education with sports and extra-curricular activities on the doorstep becomes ever more appealing.

One of our key recommendations for clients who want to make just one move is to look within the triangle formed by Hungerford, Newbury and Oxford. From there, you’re within an hour of some of the most popular public schools in the country, as well as some of the best prep schools.

These are the most sought-after prep schools for The Buying Solution clients in the countryside:


Summer Fields School, Oxford

Why? Traditional boys’ day and boarding prep school


The Dragon School, Oxford

Why? World-famous co-ed day and boarding prep school


St Hugh’s, Faringdon, Oxon

Why? Much talked about day, flexi- and weekly-boarding co-ed prep favoured by parents wishing to avoid Oxford city traffic


Cothill House, Abingdon, Oxon

Why? Traditional, family-run boarding school for boys


Abingdon Prep, Abingdon, Oxon

Why? Well-respected day and boarding boys’ prep in easily-accessible countryside


Beaudesert Park, Minchinhampton, Glos

Why? Happy, day, flexi- and weekly boarding co-ed prep school


Kitebrook, Glos/Oxon borders

Why? Family-run, small and friendly co-ed day and boarding school


Dean Close School, Cheltenham, Glos

Why? Co-ed, all-through day and boarding school with an excellent drama department


Cheltenham Prep, Glos

Why? Co-ed day and boarding school which feeds into both Cheltenham Ladies & Cheltenham College


Winchester House, Brackley, Northants/Oxon/Bucks borders

Why? Day and boarding prep school which offers a broad curriculum including a ’tinker shed’


Bruern Abbey, Bicester, Oxon

Why? Day and boarding prep school for boys with dyslexia or other specific learning difficulties


Moulsford Prep, Wallingford, Oxon

Why? All-boys day and boarding prep school set in 30 acres which is popular with London commuters


Godstowe, High Wycombe, Bucks

Why? Day and boarding prep school for girls which feeds into Wycombe Abbey


Caldicott School, Farnham Royal, Bucks

Why? Excellent, boys-only day and boarding prep school


The Beacon, Chesham Bois, Bucks

Why? Good, boys-only day school



Cheam School, Thatcham, Berks

Why? Oversubscribed co-ed day and boarding school


Elstree School, Newbury, Berks

Why? Boys-only day and boarding prep school set in 150 acres


Horris Hill, near Newbury, Berks

Why? Traditional boarding and day prep school for boys


Ludgrove, Woking, Berks

Why? Traditional boys’ boarding prep school


Farleigh School, Andover, Hants

Why? Fashionable, co-ed boarding prep school with a traditional Catholic history


Twyford School, Winchester, Hants

Why? Traditional co-ed boarding and day school


Pilgrim’s, Winchester, Hants

Why? Academic boys’ choir school which offers day and boarding


Churches College, Liphook, Hants

Why? All-round co-ed day school in the heart of the South Downs


Dunhurst, Petersfield, West Sussex

Why? Co-ed day and boarding feeder prep school for Bedales


St Margaret’s, Calne, Wilts

Why? Co-ed day and boarding prep which feeds girls to St Mary’s Calne


Pinewood School, Shrivenham, Wilts

Why? Friendly co-ed day and boarding school


Port Regis, Shaftesbury, Dorset

Why? Co-ed day and boarding school with excellent facilities

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