Shiplake College is an HMC independent day and boarding school for boys aged 11-18 and girls aged 16-18. Boarding is available from 11+ (Year 7). The College is situated on the banks of the River Thames, just outside Henley-on-Thames.
About the school
Whilst Shiplake College has evolved and moved forward since its founding in 1959, many principles remain the same. We aim to admit a well-balanced intake of pupils with a variety of skills and talents, be they in the classroom, on the sports field, in the theatre or the Chapel. We look for young men and women who will take the opportunities that they are given and grasp them with both hands. We challenge the pupils in our care to help them move on to bigger and better things. We firmly believe that in addition to a solid academic grounding, sporting, social and cultural achievement is vital to a pupil’s long-term development. Shiplake offers a wide range of challenging enrichment activities to ensure an all-round education.
Each year, Shiplake College offers a number of scholarships and exhibitions to reward excellence and to celebrate exceptional talent. Scholarships are offered to pupils demonstrating outstanding academic ability or excellence in a major co-curricular domain. Each year, Shiplake College offers a number of scholarships and exhibitions to reward excellence and to celebrate exceptional talent. Scholarships are offered to pupils demonstrating outstanding academic ability or excellence in a major co-curricular domain.
Year 7 (11+)
Year 9 (13+)
Year 12 (16+)
Sport (Rowing, Rugby, Hockey, Cricket, Netball)
The College Governors are committed to broadening access to the school by offering means-tested financial support to eligible parents or guardians to assist with the payment of school fees. Such support is known as a bursary and may be awarded in the form of a discount on tuition fees payable, depending on the financial, compassionate or other pertinent circumstances of applicants.
Bursaries are awarded on the basis of financial needs of the family. In applying for a bursary families will be asked to complete a financial disclosure form which will followed up by a home visit from the independent Bursary Administration Company. They will then provide the College with a detailed report on the family’s financial situation. Bursary applications must be submitted in line with the normal application process for a place at the College.
Full Boarding: £10,650 per term
Weekly Boarding: £9,990 per term (up to 6 nights a week)
Flexi-Boarding: £8,190 per term (up to 2 nights a week)
Day: £7,160 per term
Overnight Stay: £49.50 per night
Full Boarding: £10,650 per term
Weekly Boarding: £7,700 per term (up to 4 nights a week)
Headmaster of Britain’s Most Dog Friendly School Wowed by Surprise Portrait
The Headmaster of Britain's most dog friendly school - Shiplake College - was overwhelmed this week by the unveiling of a surprise portrait of him with his Golden Retriever, Simba.
22nd October 2020 — The Headmaster of Britain's most dog friendly school - Shiplake College - was overwhelmed this week by the unveiling of a surprise portrait of him with his Golden Retriever, Simba.
The portrait of Mr Tyrone Howe and Simba was a personal gift from TriQuant Investments Ltd. Local dog portrait artist Clive Hemsley was commissioned to paint the portrait of Mr Howe and Simba. Clive will also be painting the dog portraits of three lucky winners of the College’s Virtual Dog (and Non-Dog) Show. Entries are now closed for the show and judges are busy shortlisting the 200 plus entries which came in.
These amazing prizes have also been made possible by the kind sponsorship of David Watson from TriQuant Investments Ltd based in Henley. Mr Watson is also a current parent and his son Ben was present at the surprise unveiling of the portrait.
Clive, otherwise known as The Dog Portrait Artist, has painted hundreds of portraits of man’s best friend, alongside a career as a Creative Art Director in Advertising. He is based in Henley and is well known for his breathtaking life-like representations of much loved family canine companions on canvas.
With more than 30 dogs living on site at Shiplake College, they are integral to the daily lives of the 480 pupils who attend the school, and they love them!
Led by Head Dog Simba, and Deputy Head Dog Ernie, they form a huge part of the pastoral team at the school, helping with the wellbeing of pupils and sometimes being a welcome distraction to a busy and stressful day.
Mr Howe, said: “I am truly surprised and overwhelmed by this fabulous gift. The likeness of Simba has blown me away and I am lost for words.
“We are a very dog friendly school and they are a huge part of the Shiplake Family. When we had to cancel our annual Dog Show, which was part of FieldFest in September, we thought why not move the competition online?
“We have had more than 200 entries which is really fantastic, but we now have the difficult job of judging them, as the quality of entries are really high.
“We are now preparing a shortlist for each category and will ask staff, pupils, parents and everyone in the Shiplake community to vote on their favourites, which will all stand the chance of winning one of Clive’s amazing portraits.”
David Watson of TriQuant Investments, said:”When we decided to locate our hedge fund business in Henley-on-Thames it was for two reasons.
“Firstly, because Henley is such a great place to do business, and secondly, because my son attends Shiplake College, which saves me nearly two hours a day on the school run!
“On my first visit to the college I was struck by the amount of dogs around the place and the friendly atmosphere that surrounded them with both staff and pupils. It was a pleasure to team up with Clive to present the Headmaster with this portrait and I hope it has provided a bit of morale boost in difficult times. Good luck with the show!"
Clive Hemsley said: “I am so thrilled to be associated with Shiplake College who clearly have their priorities right - education and a close relationship with dogs - what a superb combination and great privilege for any pupil.”
Former Shiplake College Headmaster Sees His Vision Complete
Shiplake College was delighted to welcome back a very familiar face for a tour of one of the College’s new facilities - The Davies Centre - the state-of-the-art multi-activity centre on the banks of the River Thames.
13th October 2020 — Shiplake College was delighted to welcome back a very familiar face for a tour of one of the College’s new facilities - The Davies Centre - the state-of-the-art multi-activity centre on the banks of the River Thames.
Mr Gregg Davies, the College’s headmaster from 2004-2019 and the Davies Centre namesake, along with wife Alison and daughter Anna had their first tour of the Centre since its completion in September today.
Pupils have been enjoying the facilities at the centre since the beginning of term. It includes our new boathouse, climbing wall, gym, archery and rifle range and facilities and storage for the College’s outdoor education programme.
Mr Davies said: “I am so impressed with it! The gym and ergo room is fantastic, the climbing wall is the bees knees and the storage facilities for the boats and outdoor activity equipment are brilliant.
"It was absolutely fantastic to see a squad of girls training hard and the boys I remember from last year have grown eight inches!
"It really feels that Shiplake now has a facility that matches the ambition, spirit and ethos of the boat club."
Year 13 Shiplake College student and talented rower, Nicole Dunn secured herself a sponsor during lockdown to keep her hopes of competing for team GB alive.
11th September 2020 — Year 13 Shiplake College student and talented rower, Nicole Dunn secured herself a sponsor during lockdown to keep her hopes of competing for team GB alive.
During lockdown rowers were only able to continue training on the river, if they had their own boat.
So she came up with the idea of rowing virtually from Lands End to John O’Groats and to set up a Crowd Funding page to help raise funds to buy her own boat.
This endeavour came to the attention of PPE tracking company Maximedi Ltd, who very generously offered to buy her a £10,000 Hudson USP boat and equipment including roof racks so she could bring her boat from Devon to Shiplake and continue training on it at College.
Nicole only learned to row on the water in the Summer of 2018 on a week long learn to row course. From then she managed to row every two weeks if she was lucky and had time, while studying for her GCSEs. She was more used to rowing on her Concept 2 at home.
She said: “From a young age rowing always fascinated me, so I think I always had it in me to give it a go. However, when I started at Shiplake in 2019 I was keen to get on the water, but just kept falling in, it was so different to rowing on the ergo. But I knew I wanted to do it so much that I kept trying hard to get used to it and increased the amount of training I was doing.”
And the hard work paid off, by November 2019 Nicole went to the GB trials, coming 18th and qualifying for the GB camp in Spain. She then went on to win the Single Sculls race for her age group at Scullers Head and was the 3rd woman overall in the competition.
Nicole continued: “I’m incredibly grateful to Maximedi for their generosity and belief in me. It has meant I have been able to train throughout lockdown which has been hugely beneficial to me.”
Nicole is very pleased to be back on the water at Shiplake and hopes to take her rowing to the next level at university next year. She is currently in the process of looking at universities to study Medicine. However, her ultimate goal is to go to the 2024 Olympics or compete on an international level.
Shiplake Music Teacher Swims Channel for Music Charity
Mrs Laura Reineke, Shiplake College's new Music Administrator has completed her mission with The Henley Mermaids to swim the English Channel.
5th August 2020 — Mrs Laura Reineke, Shiplake College's new Music Administrator has completed her mission with The Henley Mermaids to swim the English Channel.
The 21 mile relay lasted 17 hours, 43 minutes and raised an amazing £27,000 for Henley Music School, a charity which brings music education to children who may not normally have the opportunity to get involved in music.
As well as her Music Administrator and Visiting Violin Teacher roles at the College, Mrs Renieke is the Founding Director of Henley Music School.
The Mermaids actually did the swim in 23 miles and had to follow strict rules for a successful swim. Swimmers were only allowed to wear a costume, hat and goggles and they had to stick to their relay order, with rules for how to get in and out of the water. If one person couldn't carry on, the whole swim would have been aborted.
Mrs Reineke said: “I was the first swimmer in the water at 11.50pm on Tuesday 21 July. I was terrified! I had to swim from the boat back to shore and then begin the swim from there - it was pitch black.
“I did the relay with four other ladies and we were all nervous. The second swim I did was really lovely as the sun was coming up. The third was great as I got into a good rhythm, but the fourth was particularly scary as it was at a point three hours before France where two tides clashed and it was really choppy.
“Along the way we encountered super tankers, an immigrant ship being picked up by the French Authorities and hundreds of jellyfish. I was lucky as I was the only one of us not to get stung!
“Overall it was the most unbelievable, harrowing, amazing, traumatic event I've ever done and I want to say thank you to everyone who supported us and our charity.”
Mrs Reineke is now back in training for her next challenges which include an ice mile (a mile in water below five degrees with no flow), the Winter Swimming World Championships in Latvia, The Windermere One Way, and a solo channel swim in 2023.
Virtual Prize Giving Ends the Shiplake Year 'In Style'
The whole of the Shiplake Community tuned in to a very special event on Friday evening, the College's Virtual Prize Giving Ceremony.
30th June 2020 — The whole of the Shiplake Community tuned in to a very special event on Friday evening, the College's Virtual Prize Giving Ceremony.
As bow ties were straightened and corks popped, we were treated with a James Bond style opening sequence with drone footage and the Headmaster Mr Tyrone Howe arriving in style via boat on the Thames. And, to ensure he wouldn't be late for proceedings, Mr Paul Jones and Mr Nick Brown turned up in the nick of time in a golf buggy to give him a lift up the steep hill to Skipwith Great Hall.
Mr Howe said: "This morning we should have been gathered in a sweltering hot marquee to mark the end of this academic year and this evening we would have been welcoming our Year 13 girls and boys, parents and staff on the front field for their leavers ball. Instead, I'm standing here in an empty Great Hall talking at a camera and sincerely hoping the internet connection doesn't let us down.
"Don't be down hearted, I hope you are sitting comfortably, and are smartly dressed with a glass of fizz, because this evening's unique prize giving evening is going to be a little bit different.
"It's designed to be fun, engaging and to put smiles on faces, but at the same time we will celebrate the wonderful work that has gone on at Shiplake throughout this year, recognise achievements and participation and applaud our prize winners this evening."
Mr Howe went through how the evening would look with speeches, a look back at the academic year and a few surprises thrown in.
The first segment featured Head Dog Simba, and members of the Shiplake Canine Resort (SCR) taking part in their own Zoom meeting about how lockdown has affected them. The idea came from Andrew Cotter, who because of the lack of competitive sport to commentate on, started to commentate on the antics of his two dogs, Mabel and Olive. At the end of the dogs Zoom call, the Shiplake audience were surprised by a personal message from Andrew Cotter himself!
And the surprises didn't stop there, there were also appearances from former British Lion and Ireland Rugby Captain, Brian O'Driscoll, Sports Commentators Gabby Logan and Kirsty Gallagher, former Scottish Rugby International, Kenny Logan, Writer and Broadcaster, Giles Brandreth, Actor, Robert Lindsay and Olympic Gold Heptathlete, Denise Lewis OBE.
Deputy Head, Academic, Mr Paul Jones had the pleasure of presenting the prizes this year, with some virtual waves and thank yous from the winners, who appeared 'magically' on the left of the screen.
Speeches this year were inspiring, engaging and inspirational. They began with Chair of Governors, The Right Honourable, Tim Eggar who gave thanks to the pupils for attending online lessons and joining in. He sadly announced that he would he standing down after 11 years as Chairman, and that Sir David Tanner, former Performance Coach for GB Rowing would be taking over from him in December.
Joint Heads of College, Rhys Ash and Estelle Thomas gave a very inspirational address about their time at Shiplake and how experiencing challenging and difficult situations has helped them to grow and overcome their fears, which has ultimately influenced who they are today. They then performed the #DontRushChallenge, made famous by social media platform, Tik Tok, where they handed over their tie and lapel pin to the incoming Heads of College, James Burgess and Trixie May.
Highlights during the evening also included a series of video montages which celebrated sport, music and drama, art and photography.
The school choir, Camerata performed a moving rendition of See You Again by Charlie Puth. Each singer performed their pieces separately, which were then put together to form a virtual choir.
Throughout the evening, families, staff and governors were encouraged to send in photos of them enjoying the ceremony, with Mr Howe sharing them live on screen at various points.
During the course of the evening there were montages to celebrate the art and photography, sport and performing arts highlights from across the year. The evening concluded with a goodbye to all those staff who are sadly leaving Shiplake at the end of the Summer Term, and the #ShiplakeAtHome montage of all the amazing virtual activities that have taken place during lockdown.
Mr Howe, said: "So we have made it to the end. It has been challenging, but thank you to everyone for their efforts and support. Not only have we got through this period, but we have done so in style. Shiplake grasped the opportunity. It has educated and supported its pupils, right through to the end of this term. I asked for us to finish strongly and we are fine shape as we cross the line.
"It has been a proper team effort. When the chips are down, it's when you see what people are made of. That's when you really test the heart of the school. I believe that the heart of Shiplake College is beating more strongly than ever.
"I can't wait to embark on the next academic year with everyone back in our school community."
The ceremony came to a close with a replay of The Weekenders' performance from this year's Shiplake Rocks Home Edition, a virtual concert held on the penultimate week of term.
Many thanks for the numerous messages of thanks and congratulations received from parents, staff and governors, illustrating that the evening had been enjoyed by all those who were watching - many as part of socially-distanced watching parties.
Mr Motivator surprises pupils at Shiplake College Wellbeing Week
Shiplake College pupils and staff took time to reflect on their own physical and mental health last week, during Wellbeing Week, and were treated to a very special virtual guest - Mr Motivator!
30th June 2020 — Shiplake College pupils and staff took time to reflect on their own physical and mental health last week, during Wellbeing Week, and were treated to a very special virtual guest - Mr Motivator!
Organised by Revd Chris Briggs and supported by staff across the school, the week was all about encouraging pupils to assemble a toolkit for good mental health by trying something new, such as meditation, yoga, exercise or prayer each morning and then reflect in the afternoon by doing something they love, or just having some downtime.
On Monday, the theme was 'Be Inspired'. The Headmaster Mr Howe, started the morning with an interview with Old Viking and Olympic Gold Rower, Will Satch, who talked about his own journey to becoming the person he is. In the afternoon, pupils were encouraged to offer kindness to someone.
On Tuesday, the theme was 'Be Prayerful'. The Rev led the morning session with prayers for loved ones lost in the Covid Pandemic and for those who may be isolating at home. The afternoon was about getting creative.
Suzi Griffiths introduced the Wednesday morning session with a live introduction to Yoga for the ‘Be Calm’ theme, to warm us up for the day ahead. In the afternoon, pupils were encouraged to 'Be You' and develop something they really love to do.
On Thursday Dr Gemma Prata introduced us to meditation for the 'Be Still' theme. Meditation can help people to unwind and destress, and it can also help us to stop, take some time and be in the moment. In the afternoon pupils were encouraged to 'Be Mindful' and be thankful for all we have.
The week was finished off in style with an exercise session hosted by TV fitness legend Mr Motivator. He led a 10 minute exercise session and then gave a motivational talk about how exercise can help with wellbeing and physical and mental health.
Rev Chris Briggs said: "I hope everyone enjoyed the week as much as I did, and that they took something away from it. It was great to see so many getting involved.
Lockdown has been a challenging time for many of us, so looking after our wellbeing is more important now than ever before. We are all learning for life, and this toolkit is an important support for good mental health.
"I am really looking forward to seeing everyone again next term and I hope to run more events like these for pupils and staff in the College calendar."
All of the Wellbeing Week sessions are available on the Wellbeing Week Playlist on the Shiplake YouTube Channel.
Shiplake College does not select on the grounds of academic ability alone. Applications are welcome from all pupils who have the potential to make the most of the wealth of opportunities that Shiplake can offer. Our assessment process is therefore designed to identify boys and girls who have a genuine interest in education that stretches beyond the confines of the academic curriculum, and will therefore benefit from our balanced and well rounded education. In return, they are expected to make a positive contribution towards many aspects of College life.
The entry assessment process requires no specific preparation. All candidates start on an equal footing, with identical opportunities to display their academic aptitude and other skills. Shiplake College’s aim is to encourage applications from a diverse range of backgrounds. This enriches our community and is vital in preparing our pupils for the modern world.
The majority of pupils join Shiplake in Year 7 (11+), Year 9 (13+) or Year 12 (16+) but occasionally places are available in other year groups. Parents who are interested in applying for a place at Shiplake should complete the Registration Form (available below) and return it to the College along with the registration fee.
Year 7: January (of Year 6) prior to entry
Year 9: September (of Year 8) prior to entry, with some pre-test assessments for boarders (October of Year 7)