Alpha Plus Group

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Alpha Plus Group is an English education company which runs a network of pre-preparatory, preparatory and secondary independent schools, colleges and nurseries. It is the second largest private education business in the UK.[1] The group was acquired by Sovereign Capital in 2002 and sold to investment group Delancey in December 2007.[1][2] The chairman of governors is Sir John Ritblat, British Land’s former chairman and major Conservative Party donor.[3][4]

History of Alpha Plus Group[edit]

The Group’s origins date from the foundation in 1931 of DLD College ‘to provide tuition for the entrance examinations to Oxford and Cambridge universities and to the British Civil Service’. The College has moved campus five times and now occupies a state of the art building near Westminster Bridge, where it educates a diverse range of home and international students. Abbey College Manchester was established as a tutorial college in 1990 and now offers GCSE, Foundation and A level courses to local and international students. Abbey College Cambridge was founded in 1994 and has become one of the best sixth form colleges for international students in the UK. Our sixth form college students regularly gain entrance to Cambridge, Oxford and other leading UK universities.

St Anthony’s School is the oldest school owned by Alpha Plus. Founded in Eastbourne in 1893, it moved to Hampstead in 1952 and was acquired by the Group in 2009.Its sister school, St Anthony’s School for Girls opened in September 2016.

Wetherby School was founded in 1951, close to the site of the new Wetherby Kensington, and moved to its current premises in 1971; although many boys go on to Wetherby Prep, the pre-prep sends large numbers every year to Westminster Under School and St Paul’s Junior School. Wetherby Senior School opened in Marylebone in 2015 and continues the traditions established at Wetherby School and Wetherby Preparatory School.

The Falcons School for Boys, then known as Falkner House Boys, was founded in 1956 and at that time located in Notting Hill. In September 1989 the school transferred to its pre prep site in Burnaby Gardens, Chiswick. The preparatory site opened in Richmond in September 2008. The Falcons School for Girls, located in Putney was acquired in 2001.

Pembridge Hall was founded in 1979 and acquired in the 1980s. It regularly sends girls to St Paul’s Girls’ School, other top London schools and leading Girls’ boarding schools, including recent scholarship awards to Downe House, Cheltenham Ladies and Wycombe Abbey.

Chepstow House School started life in Pembridge Villas in 2010 and subsequently moved to Lancaster Road, Notting Hill, where it will educate boys and girls up to the age of 13.

All Alpha Plus preparatory schools send boys and girls on to top English senior schools, often winning entrance scholarships; this year a Wetherby Prep boy won a King’s Scholarship to Eton, a boy from St. Anthony’s was elected to a scholarship at Winchester. Pupils at Hilden Grange, the Group’s only Prep school outside of London, won two top scholarships to Tonbridge and a 100% music award to Wells Cathedral School this year.

The Minors Nursery School was founded in 1975 and moved to its current location after joining the Group in 2004. Most of its children progress to either Wetherby or Pembridge Hall, as do the majority of children at Rolfe’s Nursery School, Notting Hill. Davenport Lodge Nursery, Coventry, became part of the Alpha Plus Group in May 2007.

Portland Place School was founded in the late 1990s by the former Head of Chemistry at St Paul’s Girls’ School, London. The main school is housed in two adjacent, Grade II listed, James Adam houses (built in c1785); two further buildings were leased in 2002 and 2004.

The Alpha Plus brand was created in 2002 by Sovereign Capital, from the acquisition of the group of schools and colleges owned by DLD. Delancey’s DV4 Fund acquired the Group from Sovereign Capital in 2007 and expanded the Group through organic growth, opening new schools and acquisitions.

With the opening of Wetherby-Pembridge in New York and Wetherby Kensington in London the Group now has 16 schools and 3 colleges.


  • Chepstow House School, Notting Hill, London
  • Davenport Lodge Nursery School, Coventry, West Midlands
  • The Falcons School for Boys, Chiswick, London
  • The Falcons School for Girls, Putney, London
  • Hilden Grange School, Tonbridge, Kent
  • Pembridge Hall School, Notting Hill, London
  • Portland Place School, Westminster, London
  • St Anthony's School, Hampstead, London
  • St. Anthony's School for Girls, Hampstead, London
  • Wetherby School, Notting Hill, London
  • Wetherby Kensington, Kensington, London
  • Wetherby Preparatory School, Marylebone, London
  • Wetherby Senior School, Marylebone, London
  • Wetherby-Pembridge School, New York, United States
  • The Minors Nursery School, Pembridge Square, Notting Hill, London
  • Rolfe's Nursery School, London


  • Abbey DLD Colleges
    • Abbey College, Cambridge
    • Abbey College, Manchester
    • DLD College, London


  1. ^ a b "ALPHA PLUS GROUP". Retrieved 13 June 2017. 
  2. ^ RealDeals, 17 December 2007, Sovereign makes fivefold return on Alpha Plus sale Archived 2011-08-25 at the Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ Team, Guardian Interactive (1 July 2014). "Who sat with whom at the Conservative party fundraising dinner with an £11bn guest list". The Guardian. Retrieved 13 June 2017. 
  4. ^ "Alpha Plus Group - The Gold Standard in Education - Governors". Retrieved 13 June 2017. 

External links[edit]