“Great oaks from little acorns grow.”
14th century proverb

Dean Close School

Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, England

Dean Close School, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, England | Dickinson | British Boarding School Consulting

Dean Close School

Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, England


Dean Close School, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, England | Dickinson | British Boarding School Consulting

Set in 50-acres near the centre of Cheltenham, Dean Close is a co-educational day and boarding school that seeks to uphold the Christian faith as a positive force for all. With around 900 pupils in total the School is small enough for everyone to be known, feel valued and get fully involved in school life, and large enough to have a strong boarding community, vibrant and exciting creative arts, impressive academic achievements and great sports results across all age groups.

At a glance

Age range: 13 to 18
Total no. of pupils: 496 / Boys: 264 / Girls: 232
Percentage of boarders: 50%
Percentage of International pupils: 13%
Pupils in Sixth Form: 194
Average class size: Senior school: 17 / Sixth Form: 9
Sixth Form termly boarding fee: 22/23 £13,298
Top 6 sports:
Boys: Rugby, Hockey, Tennis, Cricket, Athletics, Swimming
Girls: Hockey, Netball, Tennis, Athletics, Swimming, Horse Riding
Linked prep/junior school: Yes
Nearest major airports: Bristol (79km), Birmingham (93km)


The School welcomes pupils with a broad range of abilities, and the challenging but balanced curriculum stretches the most able whilst enabling those of more moderate ability to achieve their personal best. House tutors oversee pupils’ academic and pastoral progress and as they enter the Sixth Form students select their own tutor. The Director of Studies advises on subject choices at every stage and typically over 70% achieve A*/B at A Level whilst over 40% go on to Russell Group universities.


The house is the main social and pastoral unit, and a 20 year investment programme has developed new boarding accommodation and refurbished period buildings to an impressive standard. Each house with boarders has a residential housemaster/mistress who has the main responsibility for pupils’ welfare and progress, closely supported by a team of house tutors. With 4 day and 6 boarding houses, and dozens of extra-curricular clubs and societies, Dean Close buzzes with activity 24 hours a day.


Sport for All is the department’s ethos and all Year 9-11 pupils play for a team in one of the major sports each term, whether at inter-house, inter-school or representative level. Facilities include 2 floodlit water-based Astroturfs, a 25m swimming pool, a rifle range, a climbing wall and a £3m sports hall with dance studio and fitness suite. Elite level coaching and playing experience among the teaching staff across a range of sports enhances the competitive edge they can pass onto pupils.

Creative arts

From the Art School’s excellent studio spaces to the professional 560 seat Bacon Theatre and the stylish Music School, Dean Close’s purpose-built facilities enable the Creative Arts to deliver on high expectations to enrich, challenge and entertain. Art offers opportunities to work with a wide range of media and techniques, there are around 12 Drama productions a year and over 50 Music performances, ranging from informal lunchtime recitals to major choral or orchestral performances.

Did you know?

  • The BonBernard Art Gallery hosts external and internal exhibitions throughout the year, including showcasing work by Picasso, Matisse and David Hockney in recent years.
  • Boys who meet the qualifying time race for glory in the annual Quad Run, similar to the Trinity Great Court Run made famous by the Oscar winning 1981 film “Chariots of Fire.”