Worksop College Preparatory School

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Ranby House Preparatory School
Motto Semper ad coelestia
Established 1948
Type Independent day and boarding school
Headmaster Mr Christian S J Pritchard MA BA (Hons) QTS- appointed September 2012
of the
Mr Colin J D Anderson MA[1]
Founder Nathaniel Woodard
Location Retford
DN22 8HX
Coordinates: 53°19′21″N 1°00′59″W / 53.3226°N 1.0165°W / 53.3226; -1.0165
Staff 33
Students 215
Gender Co-educational
Ages 3–13
Houses 4
Colours Navy blue, white and gold
Affiliation Woodard Corporation

Ranby House Preparatory School is a co-educational independent preparatory, day and boarding, school for boys and girls aged 3 to 13. It was founded by Nathaniel Woodard and is a member of the Woodard Schools.[3] The school is the feeder to Worksop College which is located some 5 miles away. The school currently has around 260 pupils and the Head Master is Mr Christian S J Pritchard MA BA (Hons) QTS. The school has two main parts, the 'Pre-Prep' (3–7 years of age) and the 'Preparatory School'. This 'Preparatory School' is then divided further into the four groups or houses: St Alban; St Benedict; St Columba; and St Dunstan.

Former pupils of the school include British actor and dancer Richard Winsor, GB hammer thrower Matthew Lambley and Katie Walter, the youngest person to go on an expedition to the South Pole in 2009.


Ranby House was the property of Sir Albert Bingham who was from a family of wealthy Sheffield steelmasters. Following Sir Albert's death, the house and the Elkesley estate were sold at auction in May 1948. The house was bought by Col. H.H. Storey on behalf of the Woodard School Trust.   As well as the house and stables the Trust also bought 30 acres (120,000 m2) of grounds, park and woodland. The school opened in October 1948 with 42 boys. [4]

The estate was originally purchased due to the "Prep" at Worksop College reaching 90 pupils and exceeding the capacity of the Prep Wing (now Portland House). There were at first joint headmasters, George Clayton and William Adler. Clayton retired in 1953. There was only accommodation for 30 boys at Ranby, so the remaining 60 stayed at the college until the remainder finally moved over in 1953. At Ranby the coach-house and stables were converted into the chapel with an organ being installed in 1962. As new classrooms were constructed in the quadrangle, those in the house became dormitories and pupil numbers rose. Other additions were a sports pavilion, swimming pool, dining hall, new chapel, 2 gymnasiums, resources centre, computer department, the boxing 'long room' was converted into science laboratories, a performing arts centre and 15 acres (61,000 m2) of land were converted into sports pitches.

It was announced in April 2011 that the school was to benefit from a £500,000 investment in the development of the school over the next two years. The plan is to spend the money on classroom development and state-of-the-art teaching equipment. [5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "School Governors". Ranby House School. Retrieved 2011-06-06. 
  2. ^ Ranby House School - Ofsted
  3. ^ Ranby House School
  4. ^ "Ranby House as Prep. School - Worksop Guardian October 1948
  5. ^ School gets £500,000 windfall - News - Retford Trader Guardian