King Edward's
School, Witley

The vision for King Edward’s School, Witley came from Nicholas Ridley, Bishop of London, who, in the sixteenth century, convinced the boy King Edward VI to grant his palace at Bridewell, on the banks of the Thames, to the Lord Mayor of London. He thus created what is now the school's parent foundation, Bridewell Royal Hospital, as a place for the training and education of poor children in 1553.

Bridewell Palace burned down during the Great Fire of London in 1666 and was subsequently rebuilt.  1860 saw the setting up of a new charity scheme for Bridewell Royal Hospital and its associated 'House of Occupations' was renamed King Edward’s School. Boys and girls could be admitted from the age of 10 from anywhere in the UK. The boys moved to the newly built accommodation on the 100-acre Witley site, near Godalming in Surrey in 1867, and it was not until 1952 that King Edward’s again became co-educational.

Since the School’s return to Witley in 1949, it has gone from strength to strength as a flourishing co-educational boarding and day school.

Tradition is greatly valued at King Edward’s which retains close links with its historical roots. The Lord Mayor of London attends the school's annual Service of Thanksgiving at St. Bride’s Church, off Fleet Street, and Admissions Day, while pupils participate in a range of events and activities associated with the City of London.

A wide range of pupils

The school's unique heritage and place among British co-educational independent schools means it can aim to provide the best preparation for adult life to a wider range of people than almost any other institution.

A good education is a foundation for life. At King Edward’s this means an exciting and challenging curriculum, a broad range of sporting, artistic, social and cultural opportunities and an environment which is specifically created to instigate the values of independent learning, responsibility for others and the enjoyment of challenge.

Come and see what makes King Edward’s such an extraordinary, distinctive and forward-looking community and such a fantastic place to live and learn. That is one reason why the educational charities involved in supporting Boarding School Partnerships have been collaborating so successfully with us us in the support of vulnerable young people, many close to the edge of care.


Bursary assistance (provided by the School’s Foundation and the City of London, usually to a maximum of 50% of the fees) is offered to families where boarding or the King Edward’s style of education is a particular need. Applicants must satisfy the normal academic criteria for entry. Examples of qualifying circumstances usually include some form of trauma in the family such as the loss of a parent, where one or both parents are seriously ill or where there is a chronically ill or disabled sibling demanding much attention and time, with the result that the parent is unable to devote enough time to the child’s needs. The children of clergy, missionaries and other special circumstances may also be considered. We also consider bursaries for Local  Authority-supported young people and have collaborated effectively with a number of authorities over the past few years.

The level of bursary awarded depends on the family’s total income and assets and need as outlined. Each case is assessed annually in the light of any changed circumstances and, while there is no undertaking to align any increases with any rise in the school fees, once awarded, a bursary normally applies for the duration of a pupil’s school career at King Edward’s. 

Our objective is to ensure that assistance is sufficient to cover the child’s continuance at the School.

Strong links with City Livery companies and other charities, including those involved in Boarding School Partnerships, enable us to recommend other sources of funding in cases of additional need. 

King Edward’s, Witley is one of the leading schools involved in ‘Assisted Boarding’ places co-funded with the charities RNCF, SpringBoard, Buttle and Reedham.

Further information:

Phone: 020 7798 6223

Address: King Edward's Witley, Godalming, Surrey, GU8 5SG

Switchboard: 01428 686 735

Head: John Attwater

Web site: