Dean Close

About Dean Close

Dean Close

Dean Close School is renowned for its family feel and warm welcoming atmosphere, with both staff and children happily enjoying being part of the School. The Preparatory School is based on the picturesque 50 acre Dean Close site and caters for girls and boys aged 7-13, both day and boarding pupils. There are three elegant Georgian boarding houses, one for girls, one for boys and one mixed junior house for younger children aged 7-10. Surrounded by beautiful countryside and close to Cheltenham Spa town, there is plenty for boarders to do.

An active weekend programme keeps them busy with visits to the zoo, activity centres, picnics, bowling and much more. Excellent facilities support pupils on their educational journey. In 2013 a brand new £4.5 million building housing a 330 seat theatre, 12 individual practice rooms, classrooms and IT suite was completed. Dean Close School also regularly makes good use of the excellent Senior School facilities a short walk across the cricket pitch.

School life is very busy at Dean Close with great importance placed on pastoral care, academic achievement and extracurricular experience. From the youngest pupil who joins aged 7 to those aged 13, there is an emphasis on the right combination of supervision, encouragement and initiative. Children excel within the broad curriculum and are able to move towards reaching their potential, whether in the classroom, the music school, on the games field or on the stage.

With a Prep School population of 310, the sense of family-like community is developed in such a way that it is possible for every child to know each other and to be individually known, valued and cared about. The Prep School offers five different scholarships for pupils joining in Year 7. These are Foundation, Academic, Sports, Creative Arts and Performing Arts and educates the Choristers who sing Evensong at Tewkesbury Abbey.

Boarding at Dean Close

Dean Close is very much a boarding school, with a full programme of teaching and activities all through the week and at weekends. The School has a healthy mixture of Day and Boarding pupils plus a small number of Flexi Boarders who stay one or two nights per week. With families from as far afield as Australia or as close as across the road, the School does the upmost to accommodate the different needs and circumstances of each individual family.

With its large population of Boarders, Dean Close buzzes with activity 24 hours a day and the Day Pupils enjoy the extra activities and life that a boarding school creates.

Every pupil over the age of 7 is accommodated in a House, which is their main social and pastoral unit. Between the Preparatory and Senior School, there are seven Day Houses and nine Boarding Houses, one of which is a mixed Junior Boarding House for children aged 7-10 and two are Sixth Form only houses.



Type of School Co-educational Preparatory School
School Address Dean Close School, Shelburne Rd, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire GL51 6HE
Number of Pupils 302
Number of Boarders 80
International Boarders 7
Age Range 7 to 13 years
Distance from Airports

Closest airports: Bristol – 50 miles; Birmingham – 57 miles.

Distance from London

111 miles.

School Links

Dean Close Senior School. Dean Close Pre-Preparatory School.

Educational Programmes

Pupils study: English, Mathematics, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, French, History, Geography, Religious Studies, Spanish and Latin.

Co-Curricular Programmes

Sport Major: Sports Boys: Rugby, Hockey and Cricket. Girls: Hockey, Netball, Cricket and Tennis. Other Sports: Athletics, Cross Country, Swimming, Dance, Gymnastics.

Clubs available: Audiobooks, Athletics, Baking, Cartoon Drawing, Chess, Christian Unions, Colouring Club, Creative Kids, Cricket Nets, Cross Country, Dance Classes, Darts, Design Technology, Fencing, Football, Gardening, Gymnastics, Hama Beads, Handwriting, Hockey, Horse Riding, Hot Chocolate & Chick Flicks, Kick Rounders, Lego & K’nex, Mixed Tag Rugby, Mosaics Origami, Pop Lacrosse, Programming, Remote Controlled Cars, Revision Clinics Rugby 7s, Science Researchers, Shooting, Sports Scholars’, Conditioning, Swimming Clubs, Tennis, Textiles, Watercolour. Music: Music is an integral part of Dean Close Preparatory School and whilst every child is involved in music classes, more than two thirds choose to take additional music lessons.

The School has outstanding music facilities; a new £4.5 million building boasts a 330 seat theatre, supported by 12 individual contemporary practice rooms and dedicated music school. A team of 28 staff led by Director of Music, Tim McVittie, offer private music lessons in all orchestral instruments as well as piano, drums, guitar, saxophone and singing lessons. We currently have pupils who are members of the National Children’s Orchestra. Music Groups: 2 Orchestras, Swing Band, Senior Strings, Brass Ensemble, Senior, Junior and Chamber Choir. Chamber ensembles include: Clarinet and Flute Groups, String Quartets, Saxophone Trio and several pop and rock groups. The Choristers of Tewkesbury Abbey Schola Cantorum are also trained in the department and take a very active role in the musical life of the School. Drama: Drama is also an important part of the Prep School.

The School has a brand new 330 seat theatre, with computerised sound and lighting and two additional drama studios for day to day teaching. Two productions take place every year, one featuring the Senior Forms and one for the Junior Forms. Drama Lessons: Years 3 – 6 have weekly timetabled class drama lessons where children are taught essential dramatic skills as well as communication techniques. Speech and Drama: Currently 155 pupils have private speech and drama lessons. They can have these individually, in a pair, or in small groups and are entered for LAMDA Examinations.