Founded in 1862 Clifton College is a co-educational boarding and day school set in 20 acres of grounds near the centre of the vibrant city of Bristol, itself surrounded by beautiful countryside. Whilst housed in some grand buildings the facilities are all modern, and the fine all-round education on offer is of the highest academic standard. The College aims to develop intellectually agile, socially confident, decent and forward-thinking individuals, the best possible version of themselves.
At a glance
Each pupil is asked to aspire to the highest standards to which he or she is capable, whilst high teaching standards, excellent facilities (including a roof telescope!) and a belief in the pupils combine to empower them to pursue the future they choose, whether at a Russell Group university or elsewhere. Tutors, each attached to a house, meet their tutees weekly and play a key role in pupils’ academic and social progress and extra-curricular activities. On average, over 50% gain A*/A at A Level.
The house system is one of Clifton’s great strengths, engendering a sense of belonging in the pupils, each of whom is allocated to one of 7 single-sex boarding houses led by housemasters/mistresses who live on site with their families. They in turn are each supported by an assistant, a matron and several tutors. The year groups mix well and there is a friendly rivalry between the houses with sporting, debating, drama and singing competitions among the most anticipated events in the calendar.
The College’s sporting heritage began with the very first school rugby match played in 1864 and the school fields teams in 15 sports, whilst a range of recreational sports is also offered. Facilities at the main campus and at the 80 acre state of the art Beggar Bush complex range from an Olympic standard 4G hockey pitch to an indoor tennis and netball bubble. Specialist coaches with elite playing experience offer pupils a competitive edge and the College maintains close links with top clubs.
The artistic range of the staff allows a wide range of disciplines to be taught, and pupils regularly win the Bristol Senior Schools Art Competition. Clifton’s Redgrave Theatre is the second largest in Bristol and the Drama team work closely with the world-renowned Bristol Old Vic theatre. A recital hall and a recording studio with a full-time sound engineer together give focus to a range of musical ensembles whilst the students themselves bring it all together in the eagerly anticipated Annual Musical.
Did you know?
- Old Cliftonians include Lily Owsley, member of the GB women’s hockey team and a Rio 2016 Olympic Gold medallist.
- The College has a synagogue within its Polack Jewish Centre, a legacy of its links with the Jewish community which endure and thrive to this day.