Battle Abbey School is a thriving co-educational boarding and day school for children aged from 2 to 18 years of age. The senior school is located in the stunning surroundings of Battle Abbey and the preparatory school and nursery are located in nearby Bexhill with superb facilties including a 25 metre indoor swimming pool.
About the school
Battle Abbey School, an independent School in East Sussex, is extraordinarily special. A glimpse through its enchanting gatehouse tells you that you are not only in a historically significant place, but also in a school that has an incomparable character. Battle Abbey’s ideal size, wonderful pastoral care, impressive facilities, continuity of education from Nursery to Sixth Form and holistic approach allied to its warm, good humoured and highly supportive working environment make for a very inclusive and unique educational establishment. The School manages to blend traditional values to new, innovative thinking in teaching and learning whilst still providing a wide range of extra-curricular activities and many opportunities to support and serve the local and wider community. It has a proven track record in many curriculum areas and has developed an enviable reputation for adding value academically in a mixed ability setting.
Battle Abbey’s ethos is highly distinctive and focuses on nurturing a close-knit family atmosphere, encouraging active participation from its students, promoting an international perspective through its boarders and encouraging self-respect, self-confidence and compassion for the needs of others. It is the sort of school where students settle very quickly and contribute willingly and positively whilst developing a genuine pride in their school and a real passion for their learning.
Battle Abbey School’s next Year 7 and Year 9 Practical Scholarships and Entrance Exam Tests will be in January 2021.
Each year Battle Abbey School invites applications from suitable candidates for the Joanna Lumley Scholarship in Performing Arts. The Scholarship is open to new entrants into Year 12 at Battle Abbey, who are joining us from a state school and who have strong interest and exceptional ability in the Performing Arts. It may be worth up to 90% of school fees (subject to means-testing) for the two years of AS/A2 studies.
Auditions for the next award will be held at the School in November 2020. We are looking for performers who are strong in Drama, and who also have ability and potential in Music, Dance or Stage Craft. We will send full detailed instructions to all candidates who register for the Audition Day.
It is possible for students to join at any time in their School career so if you have any questions regarding scholarships, bursaries or registration please contact the School office on 01424 772385.
On Friday 20th November Battle Abbey Prep School was transformed into a school from the Victorian era. Every child – and member of staff- came dressed ready to spend the day immersed in one huge role play adventure!
30th November 2020 — On Friday 20th November Battle Abbey Prep School was transformed into a school from the Victorian era. Every child – and member of staff- came dressed ready to spend the day immersed in one huge role play adventure!
Laura Flannigan, History and English co-ordinator, said: ‘Due to the current pandemic all school trips have been curtailed so we decided that the next best thing was to create our own Victorian experience, one which involved every pupil in the school. All children aged 4 – 11 dressing up in Victorian costume and as you can imagine it very much changed the nature of the school and the pupil’s behaviour! Dress up days such as these celebrate learning and prove to be exceptional motivational. All who took part enjoyed the cross curricular day.’
All the children were introduced to the life of a Victorian and took part in a range of activities, all true to Victorian times. These included cleaning, elocution and of course the three Rs! In addition to this the children experienced a Victorian PE drill and had to apply for a job to gain employment! There was a whole new appreciation of electricity as some even wrote their application by candlelight.
Nova Shoesmith, Headmistress, said; ‘During these testing times we feel bringing learning alive, engaging with children’s imagination and creating memorable moments for them is vital. Despite the testing financial conditions these are exciting times for the Prep School. We currently have record numbers on roll and have just signed off on a brand new Science, Technology and Engineering Hub, which is due for completion on site this academic year. There is certainly much to be thankful for at a time when we know many Independent Schools have been suffering and we are delighted to pass some of this excitement on to the children who always enjoy our themed activities.’
Battle Abbey School announce new Prep School Headmistress
Battle Abbey School is delighted to announce that former Deputy Head Nova Shoesmith will now take up the position as Headmistress at the Prep School in Bexhill.
11th November 2020 — Battle Abbey School is delighted to announce that former Deputy Head Nova Shoesmith will now take up the position as Headmistress at the Prep School in Bexhill. The site based in Hastings Road also includes Battle Abbey School Nursery and the School swimming pool.
David Clark, Battle Abbey School Headmaster, said; ‘Much loved former Prep Head Maria Maslin sadly lost her valiant battle with cancer over the summer and there was never any doubt that Nova would step up and be extremely capable in the role, having served as Acting Head during Maria’s struggle with illness and oversee the school’s remote learning throughout lockdown. Nova will provide our parents with continuity and stability at this difficult time. Nova arrived from Bede’s School in 2014 bringing with her a wealth of experience in both Key Stage 1, 2 and in Early Years Provision. We are all suitably excited to see how Nova will bring her own brand of leadership and strategic thinking to the Prep School.’
Nova said; ‘Despite the sad news of Maria’s passing this summer there is much to be optimistic about with regard to the school’s future. We have a record number of 119 on role at the Prep School. The Nursery, based on the same site, is full in most rooms for most days and the Prep is in fantastic financial shape, particularly during these uncertain times. Battle Abbey Prep School is regularly listed in the Times top 50 Prep Schools and in particular it’s the relationships between staff, pupils and parents that make the Prep school such a unique place to work.’
‘I hope to continue to develop our services to parents and pupils through focused attention on academic achievement. To ensure all our pupils excel and reach their potential, whatever their starting point; through further development of our Enrichment programme. Give pupils the opportunity to explore, perform and think creatively beyond the academic curriculum, and to continue with our excellent pastoral care and consideration. I also plan to continue to develop personal wellbeing with the help of our school dog, Milo, and the future construction of a Wellbeing garden.’
‘We have some further exciting plans for the future including radically overhauling the School’s STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Maths) provision and facilities. The fact that we have the resources to invest in our pupils’ facilities is reassuring to the school and local community, firmly establishing the fact that Battle Abbey Prep School has a solid and secure future. As a Bexhill resident I’m very keen to develop strong links to Bexhill and the Bexhill Community and would welcome any suggestions on how best we can further participate and assist in the area. I am delighted to be the next custodian of our family school and look forward to some exciting times ahead.’
Battle Abbey Prep School evening Observatory visit
Battle Abbey Preparatory School Year 5 & 6 visited Herstmonceux Observatory and Science Centre for a special late afternoon/evening trip.
3rd December 2019 — Battle Abbey Preparatory School Year 5 & 6 visited Herstmonceux Observatory and Science Centre for a special late afternoon/evening trip. With the skies turning dark, the intention of the trip was to use the historic telescopes to view the night sky and look at some celestial objects to enrich their previous learning of Earth and Space. The centre itself is the former site of the Royal Greenwich Observatory and it gave the children an insight into how astronomers used to work.
Mr Barraclough, Prep School Head of Science said; "Unfortunately the weather was not on our side and the cloudy skies made it impossible to view the stars. However, using a state of the art programme, the night sky was projected onto a wall, showing the children exactly what the sky would have looked like with no inclement weather. Our guide, Dr Sandra Voss, was able to explain to us the different constellations visible at this time of year and the children learnt how the star Polaris (The North Star) was important for navigation and the creation of star maps. The children were then told the stories of different constellations and even found out about Saturn and its 82 moons."
A telescope tour was also conducted, where the children learnt about the origins of the huge telescopes and had the opportunity to ask questions about the centre and its previous importance to astronomy. They learnt about the original Royal Observatory in Greenwich and its primary purpose which was to reduce shipwrecks. At that time, mariners had no accurate way of working out their position when out of sight of land. Many sailors' lives were lost when ships struck rocks and so the observatory was tasked with producing accurate star maps for navigation. The children also had the opportunity to learn about recent research and were awed by pictures taken from telescopes in space such as the Hubble Space Telescope. It truly gave them a perspective of how vast the Universe is.
Battle Abbey Prep School host event for local schools
Battle Abbey Prep School, Bexhill, were delighted to invite children from local primary schools for an exciting programme of art, music and drama. The Prep school opened its doors and facilities with an aim to support the arts in the local community.
19th November 2019 — Battle Abbey Prep School, Bexhill, were delighted to invite children from local primary schools for an exciting programme of art, music and drama. The Prep school opened its doors and facilities with an aim to support the arts in the local community.
As part of the animal themed day, the 5-7 year olds made animal masks using a range of materials and artistic techniques, took part in drama sessions and learned a range of animal themed songs using percussion instruments to create accompaniment.
At the end of the day the children all came together and gave a short presentation to the older children in the school and visiting parents.
Mrs Golding Year 2 teacher said ‘The enthusiasm and excitement of the day was evident in all the children’s faces and the quality of work that the children created across the arts, was outstanding.’
Attendees Sebastian, Natalie and Frederica aged 6 and 7 said ‘Every single person was having fun. I loved making new friends. It was the best day ever!’
Nova Shoesmith, Deputy Head, said; ‘It is no secret that arts subjects are increasingly being deprioritised in many schools. At Battle Abbey Prep we see dance, drama, music and visual arts as fundamental to personal development, expression and cultural engagement. We believe that artistic experiences fuel imagination which, in turn, fuels creativity.’
‘During our themed art day we witnessed a whole host of skills being applied and enhanced that will naturally spill over into other academic areas. Perseverance, focus and collaboration to name just three. The latter in particular was evident in abundance as children from different schools exhibited great teamwork to work collaboratively at the end of day performance.’
‘At Battle Abbey we have specialist music and art teachers to help children harness their skills. With the right instruction the arts develop motor skills, language and social skills along with decision making and inventiveness. It also helps pupils develop a healthy relationship with risk taking.’
Battle Abbey School reach 500 on roll for first time
Battle Abbey School is delighted to report that, for the first time in its history, there are now 500 pupils on the school roll.
3rd May 2019 — Battle Abbey School is delighted to report that, for the first time in its history, there are now 500 pupils on the school roll.
Strong recruitment at all sites has led to this total with the school now operating a waiting list for several year groups.
Maria Maslin, Prep Headteacher commented, ‘With the arrival of Hugo and Thomas Clark-Fisher we have reached this record number. It seems fitting these pupils are the grandsons of Judy Clark, our former Prep School Headteacher and shows how our school family ethos extends through the generations. It is a time of great optimism for Battle Abbey School having opened our brand new Nursery facility last September which is thriving. Our Prep School is currently ranked in the Times Top 50 in the country for academic achievement and, for a small family school, we are proud to show we compete on a national level.’
Marketing Manager James Dennett said. ‘At a time of great uncertainty for the Independent School market in general Battle Abbey School is well and truly bucking the national trend. The current high levels of recruitment can be attributed to a number of factors but there is no doubt that the latest Government produced league table reported on the BBC has helped enormously. This important league table saw Battle Abbey Senior School ranked as the top secondary school in East Sussex, West Sussex and Kent for pupil progress and achievement at A Level and the same league table had Battle Abbey School ranked 26th nationally out of nearly 4,500 schools. It has also helped that our recent A Level and GCSE results have put us in the top 120 schools in the country.'
Equally, our award winning ‘Fuel Your Child’s Success’ marketing campaign has made a difference in raising the profile of the school regionally and we broke our Open Day attendance record this academic year with over 212 prospective pupils and their families attending the school sites.
David Clark, Senior Headmaster, said ‘Our parents and pupils continue to be the best ambassadors for the school and happy and satisfied parents who talk about us to their friends makes a significant difference for us. Our pupils conduct and behaviour beyond the Abbey walls is also a huge marketing fillip. Their confidence and attitude both while they are pupils at the school and when they leave to enter the world of work or further education, speaks volumes about the efforts the staff here put in to get the very best out of the pupils.’
Year 5 at Battle Abbey Prep School Bexhill have been learning about Fairtrade as part of their Geography studies.
8th March 2019 — Year 5 at Battle Abbey Prep School Bexhill have been learning about Fairtrade as part of their Geography studies.
The pupils learnt that Fairtrade is a way of buying and selling products that allows the farmers and farm workers to be paid a fair price for their crops and have better working conditions. They identified produce such as chocolate, coffee, sugar and even types of cotton which are Fairtrade.
Mrs Maslin, headteacher and geography teacher explained, "The children learnt to recognise these products using the distinctive Fairtrade Mark and were pleased to discover that this already applied to all the School’s bananas!"
The children will be leading a school assembly to raise awareness of Fairtrade Fortnight, to promote Fairtrade products and to explain how we can help farmers and their communities around the world.
Open Days are always very well attended and give prospective parents the chance to see what makes our school so special. Our Open Days in 2019 attracted a record 174 prospective pupils and their families to the School. On Open Day prospective families will have the opportunity to meet the head, talk to staff and pupils and see what makes our school so successful.
In the meantime if you would like to visit to the Senior, Prep or Nursery School please contact the school offices. Visiting on a normal school day allows prospective parents the chance to drop in on lessons and find out exactly what makes learning at Battle Abbey School such a unique experience for your child. You are welcome to visit the school at any time by appointment.