Copthorne Preparatory School

West Sussex

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  • Category: Nursery / Pre-Preparatory / Preparatory
  • Pupils: Co-Education
  • Type: Day & Boarding
  • Religious Affiliation: Church of England
  • Roll: 160 (Boys) 140 (Girls)
  • Age Range: 2 - 13 years
  • Founded: 1902

General Information

Copthorne Prep is a thriving day and boarding school with extensive after school activities that are becoming very attractive to the children as well as our parents. Set in 55 acres, Copthorne Prep children have lots of space to grow and learn from the Nursery right up to Year 8. Along with an indoor swimming pool, sports hall, theatre and extensive grounds which hosts lots of matches on Wednesday afternoons followed by scrummy match teas. Copthorne Prep School gives every child every opportunity to find his or her talent whatever that might be.


Our lovely Nursery building provides a happy, purposeful environment for your son or daughter. It has its own playground which opens on to the sports field and down to the tennis courts and woods. The Pre-Prep Department is housed in a separate self-contained area. The children here also enjoy the benefits of the main school facilities such as the Chapel, the Dining Room and Theatre, in addition to the Sports Hall, the Swimming Pool and the extensive playing fields as well as having their own computer suite. Each classroom has its own computer. At the main school the theatre has tiered seating and modern lighting and sound systems. The sports hall houses a tennis court, netball court, four badminton courts and two cricket nets, dance studio and viewing gallery. There is an Art Room and Design technology Room.

With refurbished facilities and dynamic boarding staff, we provide the answer for parents who are working long hours and leading busy lives, and still want the best of family life. For weekly boarders, a warm, friendly and comfortable boarding house provides a secure and familiar environment to enjoy being with friends, the ability to do homework under supervision and make use of the school facilities for evening activities. Then it’s home to the family at the weekend, with London children being escorted safely back to the capital. Our full time boarders are able to enjoy wonderful weekends with us exploring the countryside.

Extra music opportunities are available, besides the standard orchestral instruments, lessons are offered on piano, keyboard, percussion, recorder, guitar and voice. There is a choir, wind, string and recorder ensembles and an orchestra. Clubs include golf, squash, tennis, Judo, chess, horse riding and cookery.

Entrance Requirements

The Scholarship Examination consists of tests in reading and spelling, English, Mathematics and Verbal or Non-Verbal Reasoning according to age.


Scholarships are available to internal candidates at 7+ {Year 3 entry) and 11+ (Year 7 entry) and to external candidates at 7+, 8+, 9+, 10+, 11+ and 12+.

Open Days

All visits are welcome, please contact the school.


2019/2020. Nursery (age 2½yr. – 4+yr.) 1 x Morning session/week £438 per term. 1 Afternoon session/week £266 per term. 5 morning sessions/ week £2190 per term. 5 Afternoon sessions/week £1330 (EYFE grant available)

Day fees. Reception – Year 2: £3250 - £3360. Year 3: £4430. Year 4: £4860. Years 5-8 (Day): £5580 . Weekly Boarding: £6800. Full Boarding: £8500. All per term.

Casual Boarding: £29 per night.. Sibling discount: Second child 5%, Third child 15%.


ISI Early Years Inspection 2012
ISI Inspection 2015

School Contact Details

Headteacher: Mr C Jones

Copthorne Preparatory School
Effingham Lane
West Sussex
RH10 3HR

[t]: 01342 712311
[f]: 01342 714014

Location Description

The school is situated on the Surrey/Sussex border and is surrounded by 55 acres of playing field and woodland. The school has excellent transport links being only 4 miles from the M23, and just 7 miles from Gatwick airport and railway station.

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School News

Copthorne independent day and boarding preparatory school West Sussex

To view newsletters from Copthorne Prep School click HERE

Copthorne independent day and boarding preparatory school West Sussex

Copthorne Prep fielded two of the youngest teams, each of three players, in the highly competitive Southern semi-final of the ECF National Schools Girls’

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Tournament held at St Catherine’s, Bramley.  Our squad comprised Sorcha C, Niamh G, Ann T, Amelie R, Natalie V-H and Jasmine O.  

There were great performances all round with Jasmine and Ann in particular playing disciplined controlled chess and it was both notable and commendable that Copthorne girls were often the last of the 168 players to leave the playing hall.  Jasmine partnered with Sorcha and Ann and scored a very respectable 6/15 resulting in a mid-table finish, whilst Amelie partnered with Niamh and Natalie and placed 6th overall with 10½ points out of 15, winning the Top Under-9 team gold medal, and qualifying for the Final due to be held on the 6/7 April 2019.  

Copthorne Prep was the highest performing school in Sussex and this was an outstanding performance from a young squad who we did not expect to qualify for the finals until next year.  The result bodes well for our ambitious stretch target of Copthorne Girls winning the ECF National Schools title in 2021.  Taking into account the Northern UK semi-final, this competition is the largest girls’ tournament in the world.  Fantastic result girls but our thanks also extend to the parents without whom these extracurricular team events would not be possible.

Apart from the fantastic result from the Copthorne Girls’ squad, Amelie also captained the U9 Sussex squad of 18 players in an inter-county match against Buckinghamshire, Berkshire and Hertfordshire held in Twyford. Amelie was one of only two Sussex players to win all their games – an extremely difficult thing to do when you are playing on any of the top three boards. Amelie was also only one of two girls in the squad which is an imbalance I am seeking to address going forward. Sussex finished second but Amelie was still grinding her opponent down (from the winners Berkshire) whilst the trophies had already been given out and most people had left. Amelie had a reasonable performance in the LJCC U10 Majors standard-play event in late December with 3/6 and whilst it was not strong enough to win Top Girl (there were over a hundred players in her section), it was good experience for her as an U9.

The best of both worlds is on offer at Copthorne Prep …  a wonderful education in a traditional Prep School, surrounded by friends, great facilities

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and 50 acres of fields and woods all week , then home for the weekend with the family.

With refurbished facilities and dynamic boarding staff, we provide the answer for parents who are working long hours and leading busy lives, and still want the best of family life. For weekly boarders, a warm, friendly and comfortable boarding house provides a secure and familiar environment to enjoy being with friends, the ability to do homework under supervision and make use of the school facilities for evening activities.  Then it’s home to the family at the weekend, with London children being escorted safely back to the capital. Full boarders are equally well catered for, with weekends packed with activities and sport, and the school only closing for two weekends and during half-term.

We recognise the trust that every parent places in us when they choose Copthorne for their son or daughter and take enormous pride in the levels of pastoral care provided to your children.  A child’s well-being is a priority in any school, but nowhere more so than in a school which offers boarding as an integral part of its make-up.

As well as an excellent record for pastoral care, the school enjoys an enviable reputation for academic success. Over the last five years, an average of 60% of our Year 8 children have received scholarships and awards to their first choice schools

Established as a full boarding school in 1902 with just 9 boys, we now welcome 350 children of all nationalities from part-time 2 year old Nursery children to full, weekly or flexi boarders up to 13 years old.  We enjoy a remarkable cultural diversity which is celebrated throughout the school, developing deep-rooted friendships, understanding and mutual respect amongst peers.

‘Our Year 8 pupils leave us as confident young adults with exciting futures and lasting friendships’

Chris Jones, Headmaster

Copthorne Independent Preparatory school West Sussex

One of my favourite competitions of the sporting calendar took place last Friday when we joined Cumnor House and Windlesham for a Pentathlon. For those

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not in the know this is an event where each athlete must compete in the hurdles, 100m, long jump, shot put and finish with a gruelling 800m. They score points in each event which are then accumulated to give an individual winner and also caters for an overall winning team.

This competition is a great way to blow away the cobwebs which were left over from last summer, try and get PB’s in your strong events and also offers the chance to try something different which may be outside of your normal skill set. I selected a rather young squad this year with Gabi, Luke, Sam (all Year 5) and Jemima (Year 7) all competing a year up from their regular school age groups. Daniel, Beau, Rosie (all Year 8) and Beth (Year 6) made up the rest of the team.

In the Year 6 competition our highlights were Gabi who won the Girls’ 800m, Luke who came 3rd in the 100m, Sam’s 2nd place finish in the Boys’ 800m and Beth who finished 2nd and 3rd in the Shot Put and Hurdles respectively. I was very pleased with the Year 6 team, especially as 3 out of the 4 were competing out of age group so this bodes well for the rest of season.

The Year 8 team produced some fantastic performances most notably Daniel who won each of the 5 events at a canter. Beau was in fine support coming 2nd in the 800m and 3rd in the 100m. Jemima saved her best performance for the Shot Put were she secured 2nd place and also came 2nd in the Hurdles. Rosie was solid throughout finishing 2nd in the Long Jump and 3rd in the 100m, 800m and Shot Put.

We didn’t quite make the grade in the team event when all points were added together but we are proud to announce that Daniel took home the gold medal in the Year 8 Boys’ competition with Rosie earning the bronze medal position in the Year 8 Girls’ event.

Recent external scholarship results have once again confirmed that Copthorne has an enviable reputation for academic excellence and all-round achievement. Further results from Worth, Hurstpierpoint

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and Ardingly will be received soon, but we are well on the way to maintaining our very impressive record of over 50% of our Year 8 leavers receiving a scholarship of some sort, and all getting into their first choice senior school!

Congratulations to the following children on their success.

Yonis Caterham School Academic Scholarship
Dylan Whitgift School Academic/Music/Sport Scholarships
Robbie Lingfield Notre Dame Academic and Music Scholarships
Karina Lingfield Notre Dame Academic and Sport Scholarships
Harriet Lingfield Notre Dame Sport Scholarship
Annie Roedean Sussex All-Rounder Scholarship
Zillyan Brighton College Music Scholarship
Hannah Lingfield Notre Dame Sport Scholarship
Amardip Worth Academic Scholarship
Lakith Caterham Academic Scholarship
Ella Lingfield Notre Dame Academic and Sport Scholarship
Sheen Reigate Academic Scholarship
Zevon Reigate All-Rounder Scholarship
Elliott Worth Music Scholarship
Teja City of London School Academic Scholarship


Today 20p does not buy a bar of chocolate, a packet of crisps or a can of drink, so what will it buy?  At Copthorne

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Prep School, the School Council took on the challenge of getting their classmates to donate 20 pence pieces as part of World Food Week when they discovered that a child in Africa could be fed for 20p!

Armed with red cups, they encouraged each class to contribute 20 pence pieces to pay for school meals to help end child hunger.  By the end of the week we were able to provide 2413 meals, having raised £482.70.

Every year Sadlers Wells holds a Flamenco Festival where the best Flamenco dancers,singers and guitarists are invited to perform. This is now our third visit

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to the festival and each time we go we are amazed by the prowess and speed of the dancers, the singers’ passion and the guitarists flare.
This year we took 37 pupils from years 8-6 and for some this was either their first foray into Flamenco and for others it was the third. This performance was quite intense, sombre and yet quite original. This was the first time that we have seen a female guitarist and also the first time that we have seen a female dancer dress and dance the steps that the male dancer performs. Despite the late night I think pupils have experienced yet another element to this art form.
As always our pupils were a credit to the school and several of the audience remarked how well behaved they were and how smart they looked.

Mrs Dodson

For the first time, the 1st VII girls won the Copthorne U13 Versatility Tournament this week on a beautiful sunny Wednesday.

All the girls showed just what

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good netball players they are switching positions every 6 minutes and not one of them looking out of place on the court. Judging by some of the scores, we have some pretty good shooters!

CPS v Ardingly A – 8-0

CPS v Ardingly B – 10-0

CPS v CPS B – 6-1

CPS v Cumnor – 10-5

CPS v Gt Walstead – 9-1

Huge thanks to our parents for their support, to Matron and to Mr Harris & Mr Grainger.

The first cross-country meet of 2014 was hosted by Brambletye and thankfully we managed to escape the recent bad weather.  The competition was split into Junior

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(Yr 5 and 6) and Senior (Yr 7 and 8) events with winning teams in each and an overall winner after combining scores.  All 16 Copthorne runners worked tirelessly in slippery conditions, negotiating tight turns and steep gradients.  After the race we were very positive of getting a good result and when all scores were calculated we were pleased to hear that our Juniors finished in 3rd place whilst the Seniors ran out in 4th.  It was a superb event and all participants played their part in a fine outcome; fully deserving of the double effort stars they received.  Special mention must go to Daniel Westwood who finished in 1st place in the Junior race.

Well done one and all!

Juniors: Beau H, Bradley S, Ella C, Rosie H, Daniel W, Will R, Yelena F, Hermione A

Seniors: Dylan H, Robbie E, Amalia F, Alice R, Hugo H, Sam M, Chloe R, Willow P

They did it again!!!!

For the second year running Copthorne Preps team of Georgia and Harriet Keenleyside plus Roselly Hamlett won a National Title

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at the NSEA Championships held in Addington Manor.

They took on 24 of the top equestrian school teams in the country. With only three in the team all scores had to count for this brilliant trio who rode fantastically well for one last time.

In 2013 the honour was the higher 85cm JWS Arena Eventing Title, a discipline judged on speed, jumping and horsemanship, demonstrating  great partnership with your pony.

Congratulations also to Harriet who came 6th overall as an individual.

What a wonderful and fitting finale for such a successful team.

3 Copthorne pupils (Amardip, Madeleine and Adam Smith) were part of the Sussex U11 team that won the National Championships yesterday at Nottingham High School.

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There were 18 counties at the final with a team of 24 children each and to be crowned National Champions is a huge achievement. The Copthorne pupils should be especially proud of themselves since most teams consisted of Year 6 pupils and therefore the children were sometimes competing against those who were a year or even two years (in the case of Amardip) older.

Well what a super way to start off the half term, on a glorious day! Josie captained the side and despite most of the girls

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feeling tired due to the fantastic sleep over they had at boarding, they put this aside and really put everything into the match!

The U9s went into bat first today so they knew they had to go out and bat hard to put themselves ahead, and this they did, with 8½ rounders being scored in the first innings, with full rounders scored from Charlotte, Ella D and Neve and some great halves from Katie, Ella C and Rosie! This enthusiasm was carried over into the fielding and I must say this is the best I have seen the U9s field yet! With 3 great catches, 2 from Charlotte and 1 from Ella D, and some super quick thinking from the rest of the team resulting in Ella C stumping out two players at second post as well as Ella D, and then Neve stumping out another at fourth post.
A great first innings for the U9s!

However they did not stop there and came back even stronger in the second innings, especially with their batting scoring another 12 rounders; with full rounders from Charlotte, Ella D and Katie and halves from Amelia, Katie, Neve, Josie, Rosie and Kushi. The U9s then went into field for the second time and although Cottesmore picked up their game they continued their fantastic teamwork and play, resulting in them taking another 3 super catches from Amelia, Katie and Charlotte and Ella C also stumping out another player at second post! The final score after the last innings today was 20½ to Copthorne and 11½ to Cottesmore, so again Copthorne were indeed the worthy winners!

A tremendous effort from all of the U9s today throughout the match, you were all stars and my players of the match, and it is lovely to see your progression each week, lets keep this up girls!
Well done to you all, and to Charlotte who was Cottesmore’s player of the match!
Charlotte 4½, Ella D 3, Katie 3, Neve 2½, Rosie 2, Amelia 1½, Khushi 1½, Josie 1, Ella C ½, Katherine R ½, and Katherine M.


We had a wonderful outing to Drusillas Zoo where we saw lots of farm and zoo animals. Some of the children enjoyed competing in the

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Zoolympics, ie holding their breath to see if they could hold it for as long as an otter (1 min), standing on one leg like a flamingo and shouting as loud as possible. We were as noisy as a kune kune pig – 92 decibels!

Our educational talk on mini beasts was really interesting and the children were able to touch cockroaches, a giant African millipede and giant African land snails. Our fun day ended with a ride on Thomas the Tank Engine train ride around the zoo

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