Cottesmore School

West Sussex

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  • Category: Pre-Preparatory / Preparatory
  • Pupils: Co-Education
  • Type: Day & Boarding
  • Religious Affiliation: Church of England
  • Roll: 95 (Boys) 80 (Girls)
  • Age Range: 4 - 13 years
  • Founded: 1894

General Information

Cottesmore is an academic boarding Prep school, which has been preparing children for the major public schools for over a century. We are large enough to be competitive in academic standards and facilities, but small and friendly enough to allow us to respect each boy and girl as an individual, and to take account of his or her needs, strengths and weaknesses. Within a warm and secure atmosphere, the children are encouraged to work hard and to play hard. A child rarely leaves Cottesmore without having excelled in some field.


Chapel, Information Technology suite, Junior science laboratory, Art Room, Design Technology Room, indoor swimming pool, new Astroturf, fishing and boating lake, both grass and hard courts for tennis, squash, athletics, Judo, golf, cross country, basketball, archery, canoeing, windsurfing and shooting as well as the core sports of football, rugby, hockey, cricket, netball and rounders. Pupils are able to take part in dance and drama productions, choir, orchestra, various ensembles and a wide range of instrumental lessons. Separate Pre-Preparatory Department.

Entrance Requirements

Interview and Report from previous School.

Open Days

2019. Sat. 11th May, Sat. 28th September and Sat. 23rd November. All 10am-12pm.

Private tours can also be arranged with the school by contacting the school office on or 01293 520648.



Pre-Prep. Reception and Year 1: £3360per term. Year 2: £3640 per term. Year 3: £4480 per term.

Prep. Day Boarding: £6290 per term. Full Boarding: £9550 per term. International Boarding: £10,550 per term.


ISI Inspection 2016

School Contact Details

Headteacher: Mr T Rogerson

Cottesmore School
Buchan Hill
Pease Pottage
West Sussex
RH11 9AU

[t]: 01293 520648
[f]: 01293 614784

Location Description

Victorian mansion situated in 35 acres of beautiful West Sussex countryside, one hour from London and just south of Gatwick airport at the end of the M23.

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School News

Cottesmore independent day and boarding preparatory school West Sussex

On Friday 3rd May, Cottesmore School’s clay shooting team attended IAPS National Clay Pigeon Shooting Championships in West London. A huge congratulations to Cottesmore’s Rufus

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for becoming U12 IAPS National Clay Pigeon Champion 2019!

In addition to Rufus’ fantastic achievement, Cottesmore was represented by 2018’s U11 National Champion, Humphrey, who was placed 4th nationally for the U12’s in this year’s competition with Xavier placed 4th nationally in the U11’s category.

Cottesmore independent day and boarding preparatory school West Sussex

Cottesmore School was delighted to host its annual ‘Cottesmore Chess Congress’ this month. The congress is a collective celebration of local chess talent, with invitations

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extended to over 15 Independent Prep and State Schools in the county.

Each school was invited to submit a team as their representatives in the competition, with each team comprising of three children at Prep school age, between ages 8 to 13. As host, Cottesmore submitted two teams, this year included a regional chess champion.

In 2018, the individual winner was won by a Cottesmore pupil and Cottesmore’s team finished in second place.

This year’s Cottesmore Chess Congress commenced at 9:30am, 48 players taking part, with a total of six rounds and the day concluded with prize giving for both team and individual winners.  The 2019 team winners were Brighton College Lower School with Cottesmore finishing second. With even tougher competition this year, including a British Champion, two England players and sixteen county players, the individual 2019 winner was awarded to a Cottesmore Year 8 boy.

Having taught Britain’s youngest Grand Master, and three times winner of the Congress, Cottesmore’s Chess teacher Jonathan Tuck is well acquainted with the talent on show. Tuck says “this is the best quality chess school competition in the country, with over half of the entrants playing at county standard”. He adds “it is an absolute privilege to be part of this event which is held in such high regard by all participants”.

Chess is a much celebrated sport at Cottesmore and as such, is part of the sport curriculum. The tournament has an illustrious history of winners, with 21 of the previous 22 Cottesmore Chess Congress winners going on to play for England.

To learn more about Cottesmore’s Chess Congress, or to arrange a visit of the Pre-prep and Prep school, please contact the Admissions Department on 01293 520648; or by email: Cottesmore’s next Open Morning will be held on Saturday 11th May at 10am until 12pm.


Cottesmore independent day and boarding school West Sussex

Cottesmore School has been awarded ‘Boarding school of the year’ at the prestigious national TES Independent School Awards 2019.

Founded in 1894, Cottesmore School has been

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a “home-from-home” for young people for more than a century. Described by one schools guide as a “fabulously old-fashioned country prep,” the judges said the school epitomises many of the best qualities of British boarding.

New starters are made to feel welcome through a “buddy” system to support their transition into boarding. Long-standing traditions form an integral element of school life, from ‘Cottesmore’s got talent,’ to the 100 year-old Carson Cup cross country run and the leavers’ boat race on the school lake. Extensive trips, which last year included trekking on the glaciers of Iceland, as well as a broad array of clubs and facilities such as grass tennis courts and adventure playground, mean pupils have space to explore all of their interests and talents.

The school also prides itself on creating a close-knit community filled with warmth where teachers and pupils get to know each other well. The entire staff are trained in mental health and children are encouraged to express their feelings. All aspects of life at Cottesmore are underpinned by the school’s unofficial motto: “Everyone has a talent.”

Other schools nominated for awards at the ceremony included Eton College, Rugby School and Wellington College.

Lead judge John Dunston said Cottesmore offered a “strong reflection of why boarding, in general, is a good thing” and highlighted how it “encouraged boarders to recognise how they need to contribute to the community and that the world doesn’t just revolve around them”. Head of Boarding at Cottesmore, David Revill, said “we are absolutely thrilled with this award and to be recognised by such a prestigious name in education is incredible. These are really exciting times for the whole team at Cottesmore”.

In addition to winning ‘Boarding school of the year’, Cottesmore was one of 3 finalists for the ‘Independent school of the year’.

The entire school has marked this accomplishment with celebrations over the weekend, including a fun ‘stay up’ for the children.

To learn more about Cottesmore, or to arrange a visit, please contact the Admissions Department, on 01293 520648 or by email: Cottesmore’s next Open Morning will be held on Saturday 2nd March at 10am until 12pm

Cottesmore independent day and boarding preparatory school West Sussex

Cottesmore School, the academic Prep School in West Sussex, was delighted to welcome Leah Wilkinson, Wales’ hockey captain, last week. Leah has collected over 150

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caps for Wales. Following the success of her previous visit to Cottesmore, Leah returned to school to provide coaching for the Cottesmore staff and pupils.

With hockey being an important sport for the children at Cottesmore, the girls were incredibly excited to meet Leah again. Making her Wales debut as a teenager in 2004 and, more recently, being appointed Assistant Director of Coaching for Woking Hockey Colts, this was a real occasion for the girls to learn. The afternoon was spent coaching staff on the Astro Pitch, with the sports staff participating, followed by the girls’ hockey teams. Leah’s visit was concluded with the 1st Girls’ hockey team who enjoyed supper together. The entire experience was a fantastic opportunity for the Cottesmore girls to learn first-hand about high-octane hockey and what it takes to compete on a national and global stage.

Sian Kerr, Head of Girls’ Games at Cottesmore School said, “We were thrilled to welcome Leah back to Cottesmore. Leah is an exceptional role model for our girls; they thoroughly enjoyed their time with her and embraced the opportunity to train with an international player, who imparted words of wisdom on winning matches”. Leah added “it was lovely to be back at Cottesmore and to be made to feel so welcome – it was great to see the enthusiasm and ability in the team here at Cottesmore and I’m sure they’ll do great things together this season”.

Leah Wilkinson coaches staff and Cottesmore 1st team


The rugby season may be over as hockey takes over for the rest of term — but good rugby news continues to roll in. Sam

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H, the co-captain of the Cottesmore 1st team, has been offered a place in the junior development squad of Harlequins RFC, following in some very worthy footsteps. Conor Walker-Simms, who still holds the 1st Team record of 19 tries in a season, was also a member of this exclusive squad, as was Luke Wallace who has gone on to play professionally at the Quins. We wish Sam all the very best in his promotion to an elite level of rugby and hope that he can take it as far as he wishes. Sam is currently awaiting the results of a sports scholarship to Worth, where he was also offered an academic scholarship very recently.



1st VII v Duke of Kent: won 2-0

Will P reports: “We lost the toss and began to an encouraging start. The first goal came soon from brilliant team work between Harry and Yode, with Yode scoring. As the match went on there were various moments where the ball was lost and won by both teams due to various slip-ups and tackles. However, at half-time the score remained 1-0 to Cottesmore.”

“We had push back for the start of the second half and almost came to an instant goal from Harry, assisted by Will. Our second goal did come soon after from a great assist from Harry and Will getting past the keeper. The final score was 2-0 to Cottesmore”. Special mentions went to Gleb and Bertie V, with Harry awarded Man of the Match.


3rd Boys’ Seniors Hockey VII v Windlesham: won 4-0

Our boys played brilliantly, fighting hard to win virtually every 50/50 ball and playing the ball about well. David on the right wing gave us a wide option that was well used and also created lots of space in the centre for Dimash to exploit; scoring a fine hat trick thanks to his intelligent runs and deft finishes. Mathieu covered every inch of the pitch and Rafferty’s stick was like a ‘ball magnet’, stopping most of their clearances and recycling the ball back to our forwards. George and Ollie defended heroically and on the few occasions when we were caught out, Asad saved brilliantly!  “A true team performance and a great win!” said a very happy Mr Revill.


1st VII v Duke of Kent: won 6-0

The 1st team started their season in fine style recently with a super first match. The boys played

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well together, communicating well and making solid passes. This was a convincing win for the team. Well done to all and especially Sam H (Man of the Match), who played exceptionally well in the centre. Sam scored two of our goals and the other scorers were Alex (2) and Oliver M (2).


1st VII v Handcross Park:  won 4-1

This was another convincing win for the team. They continued to play well together and adapted well to the quick pace of the new Handcross astro. We dominated possession and only through one poor pass did Handcross manage to sneak in a goal.

Well done to all and especially Oliver M, Man of the Match.  He played exceptionally well on the right wing, consistently making excellent, fast paced crosses for the team. There was a hat-trick for Alex, with a goal scored by Sam H to take the tally to 4.


2nd VII v Handcross Park: won 7-2

We started incredibly strongly, surging down the wings and pinging in many dangerous crosses which caused mayhem amongst their defence. As a result, we scored 4 early goals in the first half.

In the second half we started slowly and conceded 2 goals which put us under a fair amount of pressure. However, we continued to be a threat when attacking and soon killed the game off with 3 further goals. “A great team performance!” said a delighted Mr Revill afterwards.

There were hat-tricks for Adam and Matteo, with Edward also scoring.  Man of the Match was awarded to Pablo.


Colts teams v Handcross Park: A team drew 1-1; B team lost 3-1; C team lost 5-0

Again playing on a fabulous astro turf facility put us at a huge disadvantage as we are more used to playing on a wet and sticky grass pitch. All credit to the boys for a battling effort, with the ‘A’ team deserving special mention for an excellent result. Our scorers were Yode and Freddie, with Men of Match awards going to Drummond for the ‘A’ team, Freddie (B) and Rafferty (C).


Squash match v Brambletye

This was a close-run match with excellent skills and determination shown by the squad. There were lots of good serves, returns of serve and some incredible agility around the court. The weekly coaching sessions are really paying off with some very promising young squash players coming through the ranks.  Mr Pearson commented: “Well done to all, and thanks to the parents who turned out to watch the team”. Our players were: Tallulah, Edward, Sam H, Pablo, Will P and Alec W.



Lancing Tournament U11s: won 2 drew 2

In a tightly-contested tournament the team performed very well, finishing in third place overall.  Congratulations go to Sophia M, an U10 player who won the ‘Best Player’ trophy from all competitors entered at U11 level, a superb achievement.

The U13 team fought hard, but were overpowered; the team comprises predominantly U12 players and all are gaining valuable experience for next year.  Abigail was awarded Girl of the Game, both for her efforts and her mature approach.

Cottesmore independent day and boarding prep school West Sussex

A fabulously eclectic musical afternoon was relished by our guests on Saturday at our annual concert. With a theme of ‘World Peace’, the school’s Vorchestra

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opened the afternoon’s programme with ‘Let It Be’.  Accomplished individual solo performances in the first half included Fursey on clarinet (When Your Hair Is Like The Snow); Isabel on piano (Spanish Dancer); Emily on saxophone (A Slice Of The Action); Robert on cello (Bourree 1 & 2 from JS Bach’s Cello Suite no. 3) and Katherine on harp (Rouet).  These contemplative pieces were interspersed with some glorious group songs, including ‘Peace Train’ (Forms 1 & 2) and ‘One Love’ (Forms 3 and 4). The first half drew to a close with the Kemble Choir’s beautiful rendition of ‘Reach Out and Touch’.

There were more superb solo instrumentals to follow, from Ju-Eun on piano (Chopin’s ‘Nocturne’) and Alan on guitar (Karuli’s ‘Rondo’). Abigail and Poppy lent their voices to a beautiful rendition of Dylan’s ‘Blowin’ In The Wind’ and The MorGans ‘High Hopes’ also won deserved applause. The Form songs concluded with ‘Where Is The Love’ (Forms 5 & 6), before the Chamber orchestra’s superb performance of the Allegro from Handel’s Sonata in F.

There were two terrific contributions from our chapel choir, ‘What The World Needs Now’ and Leonard Cohen’s highly-charged ‘Hallelujah’.  Finally, the entire school took to the stage to raise the roof with ‘We Are The World’, bringing another memorable musical afternoon to a close.

The first half of the Easter Term has been full of achievement and enjoyment for pupils from our seniors to the smallest members of the

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Highlights of this packed period include inspiring talks by a representative of Action Aid, (which supported topics of study) and an anti-bullying presentation by Robert Higgs. A skipping workshop was much enjoyed by everyone and Sundays ‘in’ have provided some fantastic treats both in and out of school. Trips to Brighton’s Sea Life Centre, Laser Quest and a new venue – Airhop in Guildford — guaranteed both fun and relaxation.

In Sport, Cottesmorians have displayed both determination and resilience in the face of some difficult playing conditions, as heavy rain and strong winds threatened to disrupt play. On the few occasions when the weather prevented play altogether, the teams overcame their disappointment and focused on the opportunities for extra training. There have been some great victories and the coaches have been pleased not only with pupils’ developing skills, but also with their sportsmanship.

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