Sign up now for FREE to read our insider reviews in full Sign Up Now
top 200
Edgeborough Farnham, Surrey Visit
375 pupils, ages 2-13
Day and Boarding


Open all

Our view

Easily commutable, yet leaps and bounds less pressured than London schools, this laidback co-ed prep brims with green space and traditional values.

Edgeborough merged with Charterhouse in 2021 to create one co-educational prep and senior school offering, but it still very much retains its own identity while benefiting from all that a partnership with a senior school brings. With an on-site nursery too, it’s a pretty attractive package.


There’s something refreshingly normal about Edgeborough: no intimidating mile-long drive, no OTT bells and whistles and nothing particularly snooty about the place, despite home being a great Victorian pile stacked with wood panelling and original features. Set just outside the Surrey market town of Farnham, surrounded by 50 acres of manicured gardens and more rough-and-ready woodlands, the estate was once owned by newspaper magnate and Daily Express founder Sir Arthur Pearson. After it became a school in the 1930s, it expanded to include functional add-ons. The nursery and pre-prep sit in cosy timber lodges with veg patches and views out to the beautiful grounds beyond.


Head Daniel Cox arrived from Lambrook in early 2022, where he was deputy headmaster and a member of the executive leadership team. Young, fun, approachable and clearly ambitious for this school, he’s been joined by his wife Lucy and their two daughters, Elsie and Iris – and having lived in the area before, they’re delighted to be back. 

Mr Cox will also be responsible for the delivery of ‘The Edgeborough Vision’, a go-getting, inspirational and far-reaching roadmap extending from pastoral care to physical infrastructure that demonstrates how carefully this already-thriving school is shaping its long-term future. Pedestrianisation of the site is one of his initial areas of focus, while other developments are more ambitious and will take longer, but there’s no timeline on the project, allowing it to sync with the school’s energy. 

Mr Cox wants to ensure each pupil’s time at Edgeborough is filled with fun and adventure, and with daughters at the school it’s both a personal and professional mission. Endearingly, he also promises to nurture and protect the brilliant work of his predecessors. 


Edgeborough is proudly inclusive and non-selective. Pupils are welcome to join in any year group, provided there’s space, but it’s Reception and Year 3 (when the school expands to three-form entry) that see the largest intakes. Prospective parents should book in for a tour – then, if they like what you see, children are invited back for a relaxed taster day where staff can observe a child’s interactions, parents get the chance to chat to the head and everyone can ensure they feel it’s a good fit all round. All a far cry from the bunfight of the London preps.

Academics and senior school destinations

‘Pushy’ isn’t part of the deal here, and while children do very well, academic results aren’t seen as the yardstick of success. Small class sizes mean SEN problems are picked up swiftly, and clever cookies are earmarked for the scholarship set. The newly launched scholarship programme allows pupils to nominate themselves or to be nominated by teachers, with scholars benefitting from a sixth-form mentor from Charterhouse.

Reception and Years 1 and 2 are based in a series of smaller buildings on one side of the site, with their own dedicated play areas and entrance. Towards the end of Year 2, children begin to familiarise themselves with the larger site by moving out of their classrooms for specialist lessons and heading to the main dining room for lunch.

Years 3 and 4 are based in the lovely stable block with a central courtyard, where maths, English and French are set from Year 3 and pupils are taught by specialists for music, drama, art, D&T, sport and French. From Year 6, all work is laptop-based on devices provided by the school. Best of all, there’s no Saturday school, so at the weekend, school runs are swapped for lie-ins.

Common Entrance is well prepared for, and the school uses the more skills-based Pre Senior Baccalaureate framework, which focuses on the active development and assessment of six core skills: communication, collaboration, leadership, independence, reviewing and improving, and thinking and learning. It’s about giving children the tools for learning, enquiry, collaboration, pastoral and emotional skills, social skills and problem-solving rather than ensuring they know certain topics. Year 7 and 8 pupils have a staff mentor to set them targets and establish a coaching programme spanning all areas of school life.

Leavers take core subject exams in the summer and then spend their final few weeks on a leadership programme. As Edgeborough is part of the Charterhouse family, plenty of pupils head over there at 13, but many also go on to an array of top day and boarding schools, including Cranleigh, Lord Wandsworth, Dauntsey’s, Priors Fields and Wellington College, with discussions beginning early in Year 5.


Outside the classroom, there’s heaps of drama – it’s part of the core curriculum right through the school, and every pupil gets the chance to enjoy the limelight on stage or with lights, props and staging. Expect masses of music, with five choirs plus the chamber choir (who will be touring Belgium this year). Years 2 and 3 all play the violin and recorder in class, so everyone learns to read music, and musicians progress to an impressive paperless music-tech vibe in the older years, making soundtracks for videos and rocking their lessons with headphones and onscreen keyboards.

Sport is big, inclusive and timetabled from nursery, and there are no stereotypes here – girls are just as likely to be found knocking about with a cricket bat as they are leaping around on the netball court. All children are coached by specialists from the outset, and there’s no shortage of space, with an abundance of pitches, Astros, cricket nets, an outdoor pool and a fantastic cross-country course that our Year 8 guides were very keen to show us: a stunning track cut into the meadow grass before dropping into the woodlands that roll away behind the main school.

The judo and climbing teams have been busy adding silverware to the trophy cabinet, and dance is gaining pace – pupils can take lessons in ballet, modern, tap and street, and secure a slot in the school’s annual summer arts festival. Clubs include everything from cooking to coding, and there’s a huge emphasis on fresh air: think den building, outdoor cooking and nature trails. Younger children can stay at clubs until 5.50pm, and pupils from Year 4 can stay for wraparound care and activities until 7.30pm from Monday to Thursday.

Art and D&T are both suitably impressive and even relatively young children can have a crack at batik, ceramics, printmaking, needlework, woodwork, computer-aided design, metalwork and 3D printing. Year 3 upwards learn touch typing (a very sensible move, especially given the IT-based teaching from Year 6), before moving to Scratch for programming in Year 4 and web design, app design and stop motion animation in Year 8. Food tech is also on the agenda from Year 3, which is all part and parcel of teaching these bright young things the skills they need for life beyond the classroom.


Boarding begins in Year 3, but the majority wait until they’re a little older to give it a go. Although full boarding is an option, this is more of a Monday to Friday school – most pupils do anything from one to three nights a week or opt into the odd B&B night. Bright, cosy dorms sit at the top of the main house.

The optional wraparound care is superb. Day children can be dropped off for breakfast at 7.50am before parents dash off to work in London (this is commuter-belt territory) and scooped up again after supper and activities. There are 55 beds available, and the infectious boarding bug seems to gather momentum as the year goes on – by the summer term, every bed is usually full.

School community

This is a small, tight-knit school, meaning staff know their pupils inside out, and there’s no danger of any pastoral issues being missed. Deputy head pastoral Ellie Buckey runs a tight ship, and as well as heads of section and a wider pastoral team, there are also seven separate pupil-led school councils, meaning that every voice can be heard and acknowledged. There’s no head boy or head girl, and the prefect system gives everyone an opportunity to take on a role of responsibility throughout their final terms.

Anti-bullying ambassadors, a week-long wellbeing festival and pastoral tracking mean that this community has well and truly got each other’s backs. The four much-loved international students staying at Edgeborough during their gap years take on big brother and sister roles, and are involved in every aspect of school life.

Edgeborough is a hit with London exiles, and the community is broadly local. Just like the school, families are traditional but not stuffy and prioritise childhood over pressure. The parents’ association organises events throughout the year for those who want to get involved, with fundraising for pupil-selected charities part of their remit. 

And finally...

With a veritable armada of enthusiastic teachers, an ambitious and likeable head and a long-term vision underpinned by the link with Charterhouse, this popular Home Counties prep is a robust and attractive all-round choice for parents – and for pupils, it’s quite simply a lovely little place to grow up.

Gallery See All

  • Senior school destinations

    Senior school destinations

    In 2023 Year 8 pupils have moved on to the following schools: Bryanston, Canford, Charterhouse (Academic (1) Sport (1)), Churcher's College ( Adademic 1), Frensham Heights, Hurstpierpoint, King Edwards, Witley, Lord Wandsworth College (Academic (1) Sport (3), Art (1), Drama (1)), Millfield, Seaford (Sport (1)),St Edmund's (Sport (1), Tonbridge, Wellington College, Winchester College

  • Scholarships for senior schools


    Academic3Charterhouse, Churcher's College and Lord Wandsworth College
    Drama1 Lord Wandsworth College
    Sport6 Charterhouse, Lord Wandsworth College, Seaford, St Edmund's
    Art1 Lord Wandsworth College

  • Fees and bursaries

    Day fees per term

    Year 1£4,390
    Year 2£4,390
    Year 3£6,430
    Year 4£6,430
    Year 5£7,130
    Year 6£7,130
    Year 7£7,130
    Year 8 £7,130
    Boarding fees per term

    Year 1-
    Year 2-
    Year 3 -
    Year 4 -
    Year 5 -
    Year 6-
    Year 7-
    Year 8 -

    Boarding fees are £45.00 per night.

    Edgeborough offers means tested bursaries across all age ranges upon entry to the school, according to a full financial history and subject to annual review. The awards are based upon a clearly identified financial need. Bursaries are reviewed annually, or until there is a significant change in parental income or assets.
  • Transport links

    Public Transport
    Nearest mainline train station: Farnham
    Journey time to London by train: 50 minutes
    Nearest international airport: Heathrow (35 miles)

  • Parents tell us

    ‘Our children have been educated abroad all their lives and have moved frequently, so we were looking for a prep school that kept a strong cohort of pupils to 13 so that our eldest could have three years in one school. We wanted co-ed and no Saturday school. 

    The admissions process was very slick, it wasn’t easy as we lived abroad and some paperwork got held up in the post, but communication was very good.

    Mrs O'Reilly and her class TA, Mrs Pavitt, have been fantastic. As have Mrs Pasley and Mrs Elliott in LEAP (Edgeborough’s programme for learning support). Mrs Jones in the boarding house was also outstanding.

    I think communication between schools and parents is never easy as everyone wants something different, but overall I think Edgeborough does a very good job of balancing it out. I like the system of emails being sent out in groups from the Edgeborough post account.

    I've had good communication with teachers individually and the response from all staff members is timely. 

    Pupils are well looked after, I know they are safe.

    Junior prep (Year 3 in particular) was well set up as it is a new part of the school for so many of the children. Edgeborough responded well to any issues raised. 

    Mrs Jones was extremely caring and supportive and the boarding house was an unexpected and hugely positive experience for my children.

    There is a very active PTA who organise events throughout the year, both for parents and families (although, again, it is hard to comment fairly on this as we have not had a huge amount of time at the school). 

    There was a welcome coffee session for new parents and the year groups organised casual coffees during the first term. Parents are spread over quite a wide area, but everyone I have met has been very welcoming.'

School Updates

  • 10 Questions with Daniel Cox, head of Edgeborough School

    10 Questions with Daniel Cox, head of Edgeborough School
  • WATCH: Hear a parent talk about their experience of Edgeborough

    WATCH: Hear a parent talk about their experience of Edgeborough
  • See Edgeborough in our Town & Country Prep Schools Guide

    From bucolic country preps to schools on the edge of buzzy market towns or slap bang in the centre of a city, there are a myriad of prep school options up and down the UK and within a daily minibus-ride of the Big Smoke. Use our guide to help with your search.
    See Edgeborough in our Town & Country Prep Schools Guide


84 Frensham Road, Lower Bourne, Farnham, Surrey GU10 3AH

01252 792495


ISI Report


Term Dates


Open Days

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

Click for a larger version of map

Need help?

Don’t panic! We have more than ten years’ experience of visiting schools and advising parents, and we are all parents ourselves – we can make this easier for you.

Talk to our team