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Clayesmore School
Clayesmore School
Clayesmore School
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Clayesmore School Blandford Forum, Dorset Visit
Clayesmore School
Blandford Forum
390 pupils, ages 13-18
Day and Boarding

Clayesmore School

Our view

Sandwiched between Blandford Forum and Shaftesbury in dreamy Dorset countryside, co-ed Clayesmore combines academic rigour with a feel-good family vibe. The prep and senior schools share the same site: the former is housed in a turreted mansion, while the latter has separate buildings, playing fields and even a dance studio, so pupils can enjoy the many bonuses of being part of an all-through school (especially for those in Years 7 and 8 who spend a term trying out subjects such as DT and pottery in the senior school). Note: at 13+ nearly 90 per cent stay on – surely the best litmus test of parental satisfaction.

Head Jo Thomson makes an inspiring role model, drawn to the school for its holistic ethos from her previous position as deputy head at Christ’s Hospital. Facilities are ace: sports pitches galore (it’s one of the top schools in the country for cricket), a large purpose-built theatre where students often direct their own dramas and a dynamic music department with ensembles that range from a horn quartet to a bagpipe band. The sixth form offers A-levels and BTECs (many opt for a mix of both), with the emphasis on helping pupils achieve their individual goals rather than shoehorning them into Oxbridge.

A help-all mentality filters down from the top here. Pupils with SEND (currently more than 100) are offered specialist assessments at the well-regarded Teaching and Learning Centre; based on the outcome, targets are set across the curriculum. There are also specialist learning-support teachers to help with the development of speech, language and motor skills, as well as reinforcing topics where necessary (a best-practice way of helping learners with additional needs). Lots of ‘overlearning’ through games to keep things fun, while at the same time strengthening auditory and visual skills.

The relatively small size of the school and sense of everyone getting stuck in together naturally creates a supportive atmosphere, but it goes beyond that: there’s also plenty of community work and a help-all mentality that filters down from the top. About 50 per cent of seniors board and many stay in school at weekends to take part in the masses of fun activities (everything from table-tennis tournaments to pizza and movie nights). For those looking for a long-game school that goes all the way from ages two to 18, where children of every ability will thrive, this is a sure bet.
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Army cadets in camouflage kit walking down stone steps
Exterior image of Clayesmore school
Students with teacher in science lab wearing white coats
Boy and girl in DT wearing safety goggles sawing a piece of wood
Boys in white playing cricket with blue helmets
Students playing musical instruments
  • Academic results

    GCSE results
    A level results
    Download results as PDF
  • University destinations

    15% of leavers went on to a Russell Group university.
    98% of leavers went on to their first choice university.
  • Subjects offered


    Art & Design
    Business Studies
    Computer Science
    Design and Technology
    English Language
    English Literature
    Food Technology
    Physical Education
    Religious Studies
    BTEC Creative Media Production

    A Level

    Art & Design
    Business Studies
    Design and Technology
    English Language
    English Literature
    Further Mathematics
    BTEC Sport
    BTEC Hospitality
    BTEC Health & Social Care
    BTEC Music Technology
  • Fees and bursaries

    Day fees per term

    Year 7-
    Year 8 -
    Year 9 £9,252
    Year 10£9,252
    Year 11£9,252
    Year 12£9,252
    Year 13£9,252
    Boarding fees per term

    Year 7-
    Year 8 -
    Year 9 £12,608
    Year 10 £12,608
    Year 11£12,608
    Year 12£12,608
    Year 13£12,608

    Clayesmore offers means-tested bursarial support to students entering the school at any point, as well as to current students whose financial situations may have changed. These awards are assessed individually, are subject to a full financial history and are reviewed annually. 

    The school also offers a School Service Award to children of serving members of the Armed Forces, granting partial fee remission. For more information about both funds please see the school’s website, or contact the Director of Finance and Operations to request more information:

    Director of Finance and Operations: Mrs A Hughes

    Bursary contact:
    Director of Finance & Operations Mrs Nina Bailey Phinn
  • SEND

    This school currently supports the following kinds of learning needs, health needs and physical disabilities:
    Dyslexia, Speech and Language Therapy, some ADHD/ASD, there are also qualified nurses and a full time medical centre. Access to local doctors surgery.

    This school currently provides the following support for pupils' mental health needs
    Deputy Head Pastoral, nurses, house parents and teaching staff provide first line mental health response and there is a counsellor available via the medical centre.

    Co-ordinator: Joy Essex
  • Transport links

    School Transport
    School daily bus network

    Public Transport
    Nearest mainline train station: Gillingham Dorset
    Journey time to London by train: 130 minutes
    Nearest international airport: Bournemouth (24 miles)

School Updates

  • See Clayesmore in our All-through Schools Guide

    See Clayesmore in our All-through Schools Guide
  • See Clayesmore in our Senior Boarding Schools Guide

    See Clayesmore in our Senior Boarding Schools Guide

Clayesmore School is
linked with:


Iwerne Minster, Blandford Forum, Dorset DT11 8LL

01747 813111


ISI Report


Term Dates

Open Days

Open days and how to visit View Open Days Register for open Day

Sixth Form Open Morning
08 October 2022

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