Fresh starts

children at school

Our round-up of Bristol's best schools

The time has come for schools to throw open their doors and invite prospective parents and children in. However, with so many options available, it can be easy to feel overwhelmed. The best thing to do is to go along to a school’s open day – this gives you and your children a chance to see the best that the school has to offer. You’ll have the chance to meet older students and staff, allowing you to ask any questions you might have, as well as seeing first-hand how the teachers interact with the pupils. This is also a great opportunity to check on the little details too – if the grounds are well maintained, if the paintwork is up to scratch and if the technology and equipment is up to date. As well as this, you can meet the headteacher, find out about the staff-to-pupil ratio and discover what extra-curricular activities they offer. We’ve rounded-up our favourite schools in the Bristol area to help you make the perfect choice for you and your children.

Badminton School

Badminton School, 160 years on, aims for girls to discover their talents and leave confident to make a positive impact in today’s society.

Student ages Girls aged 3–18

Location Westbury Road, Westbury-on-Trym, Bristol BS9 3BA

Private/state Private day and boarding school

Headmistress Mrs Rebecca Tear, BSc, MA, PGCE

Head of junior school Ms Emma Davies

School size Approximately 460

Open day dates/times:

Sixth Form open evening: Friday 28 September 2018

Whole school open mornings: Saturday 6 October 2018 & Monday 6 May 2019.

Contact admissions to book your place and for further information, or book online here:

Admissions Harriet Barnes, Admissions Manager: 0117 905 5271 or


Fairfield High School

Fairfield High School is a vibrant and diverse community where every individual is valued and nurtured. Students have a wonderful time as well as achieving excellent results that set them on the path to a great future.

Student ages 11–16

Location Horfield, Bristol

Private/state State

Principal Mr Nick Lewis

School size 900

Open day dates/times

Open Evening:

Thursday 20 September 6.00–9.00pm.

Open mornings:

Tuesday 2, Wednesday 3, Thursday 11 and Friday 12 October 9.15–10.30am.

Admissions /


The Downs Preparatory School

The Downs School is a leading, independent, preparatory school for girls and boys. For each child we aim to provide an invigorating, stimulating education developing to the full the creative, physical and intellectual potential of all our pupils.

Student ages 4–13

Location Nestled in 60 acres of private North Somerset Countryside – Just four miles from the centre of Bristol

Private/state Private

Headteacher Marcus Gunn MA (Ed) PGCE BA IAPS

School size 287

Open day dates/times

5 October 2018 9.30am–2.30pm.

Admissions Caroline Crew, 01275 852008 /


Sidcot School

An independent day and boarding school set in glorious Somerset countryside for boys and girls aged 3–18.

Student ages 3–18

Location 30 minutes south of Bristol city centre and just 10 minutes from Bristol Airport: Oakridge Lane, Winscombe, North Somerset BS25 1PD

Private/state Private

Headteacher Mr Iain Kilpatrick BA, Med, FRSA

School size 600

Open day dates/times

Friday 28 September 2018 and Friday 25 January 2019. From 09:15am to 12 noon.

Admissions Claire Rundle, 01934 845 212 /


Clifton High

Operating the Diamond Edge Model of education, the school’s aims are to foster within its pupils independence, resilience and curiosity, and to celebrate each child for who they are and what they achieve.

Student ages 3–18

Location Clifton, Bristol

Private/state Independent

Headteacher Dr Alison M Neill

School size 600

Open day dates/times

Senior school and sixth form open evening: Thursday 20 September 2018.

Whole school open morning: Saturday 20 October 2018.

Nursery school and reception open morning: Thursday 8 November 2018.

Admissions Ms Lindy Scudder 0117 933 9087 /


Torwood House School

Torwood House School is a small, yet vibrant, award-winning school located on the edge of Redland. Each child receives a truly individualised teaching plan – meaning your child will get the best possible start to their first stage of formal education. 

Student ages 4–11

Location Redland, Bristol

Private/state Private

Headteacher Mrs Dionne Seagrove

School size 40

Open day dates/times:

Thursday 11 October 2018, 9.30am–12.00 noon. Register to confirm attendance via email or phone.

Admissions 0117 9736620 /


Fairfield School

Fairfield is a small school with a family atmosphere, where our children are encouraged to feel secure, happy and valued.

Student ages 1–11

Location Backwell

Private/state Private

Headteacher Mrs Lesley Barton

School size 130

Open day dates/times

Individual tours (9.30am or 11.00am) by appointment throughout the year.

Admissions Cathy Scott,


Bristol Grammar School

At Bristol Grammar School our aim for your child is for them to leave BGS happy, confident and secure, equipped not just with qualifications but with the skills they need to make their way in the world.

Student ages A co-educational day school for children aged 4–18

Location University Road, Bristol BS8 1SR,

Private/state Independent

Headteacher Mr Jaideep Barot

School size 1,300

Open day dates/times

Reception open morning

Tuesday 25 September, 9.30am–11.00am

Open evening

Friday 5 October

4.00pm–6.00pm (junior school)

4.00pm–8.00pm (senior school and sixth form)

Junior school open morning

Tuesday 9 October, 9.30am–11.00am

Sixth form information evening

Tuesday 6 November, 5.00pm–7.15pm

Admissions Hollie Matthews, Admissions Manager: 0117 933 9885

Catherine Ball, Infant and Junior School Admissions Officer: 0117 933 9631

Katie Hillier-Swift, Sixth Form Admissions Officer: 0117 933 9630


Clifton College

Clifton College is a thriving, co-educational school with superb academic results and excellent co-curricular, sport and arts achievements.

Student ages 2–18

Location Clifton, Bristol

Private/state Independent

Headteacher Dr Tim Greene

School size 1,217 (Preparatory School, ages 2–13, 504; Upper School, ages 13–18, 713)

Open day dates/times

Pre-Preparatory School and Prep School:

Saturday 22nd September 2018

Upper School:

Saturday 6th October 2018

Sixth Form

Wednesday 10th October 2018

Admissions, 0117 405 8417/

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