Rose Hill School, Alderley

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For Rose Hill School in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, see Rose Hill School.
Rose Hill School, Alderley
Alderley House, the main building of the former school
Motto conando floreamus
Established 1839[1]
Closed 2 September 2009[2]
Type Preparatory school
Religion Anglican
Headmaster Paul Cawley-Wakefield
Founder Mr T Alfree (RHS Tunbridge Wells)[1]
Location Alderley
nr. Wotton-under-Edge
GL12 7QT
Coordinates: 51°36′55″N 2°20′11″W / 51.6154°N 2.33635°W / 51.6154; -2.33635
Gender Co-educational
Ages 2–14[2]
Houses Romans, Greeks, Trojans[1]
Colours Pink, Blue
Website Official 'Old RoseHillians' Website

Rose Hill School, Alderley was a co-educational, boarding and day, Pre-preparatory and Preparatory School for children aged 2–14 years old.[2][3] It was situated in Cotswold countryside in the village of Alderley, near to Wotton-under-Edge in Gloucestershire, England. Its motto, 'conando floreamus',[4] translates as 'We are distinguished through effort'. The school closed on 2 September 2009[2] to merge with Querns Westonbirt School, together forming Rose Hill Westonbirt School which is co-located with Westonbirt School in nearby Tetbury.[5][6][7][8] ros


Rose Hill School was originally established in Tunbridge Wells, Kent in 1832. In 1903 the then Headmaster, Mr Browning, founded a second Rose Hill School in Banstead, Surrey, taking the vast majority of the original school with him. Following the outbreak of World War II, this second Rose Hill School re-located to the small village of Alderley, near Wotton-under-Edge in Gloucestershire in 1939.[1][8] The school was based around the 20-acre site of Alderley House,[8] a Grade II Listed[9] neo-Elizabethan 19th century manor house[10] designed by Lewis Vulliamy[10] and built for Robert Blagden Hale[11] between 1859 and 1863.[12] The house was built on the site of a previous Jacobean property,[4] and the cellars from the original building remain to this day under the house.[8] On the ground floor of the house were located the dining room, the library, the Headmaster's study, two classrooms, the school office, a billiards hall, a small laundry, the staff room, the staff dining room and the kitchens, whilst the upper floors (including the former servants' quarters on the top floor) provided the Sick-Bay and all dormitory accommodation and washing facilities for boarding pupils, as well as living quarters for the matrons and some teachers. All of the dormitories were named after local villages, including Alderley, Badminton, Hawkesbury, Hillesley, Kingswood and Stinchcombe.

The sizeable grounds in which the school was situated included a number of spinneys, two grass tennis courts, a hard court, an outside swimming pool and a large playing field,[8] and it adjoined St Kenelm's Church.[13][14] The grounds directly to the west of the house were dominated by a mature Wellingtonia tree, a very tall specimen of the Giant Sequoia family, while on the other side of the house towards St Kenelm's Church were two Monkey-Puzzle trees.

Closure of the School[edit]

After 70 years at the Alderley site, Rose Hill School closed on 2 September 2009[2] when it merged with Querns Westonbirt School (formerly Querns School, Cirencester until its acquisition by Westonbirt School in 2002[15]). Together the two schools formed Rose Hill Westonbirt School[5][6][7][8] which is co-located with Westonbirt School[5] in nearby Tetbury.[5] Weston Birt School Limited (Company Registration No. 230224, Registered Charity No. 311715) acquired the undertakings, assets and liabilities of Rose Hill School Alderley Limited (Company No. 911698, Registered Charity No. 311708) for £1.798 m on 29 August 2008.[16] The property at Alderley was put on the market at the end of 2009 for £3m[8] and subsequently sold for use as a private residence. After purchasing the house the new owners employed Humphrey Cook Associates to refurbish the property back to its original state in 1860.[17]

In September 2009 the property was used as one of the filming locations for a Season 24 episode of BBC1's hospital drama Casualty[18][19] which aired in early 2010.

In documents filed since the sale of the property the house has been referred to as "Alderley Manor",[20] whereas the Land Registry still refers to it as "Alderley House".[21] There also appears to be a reference to the property as "Alderley Manor" in the National Archives, in the context of R. H. Blagden Hale's purchase deeds.[22]


2005–2009 Mr Paul Cawley-Wakefield[23]
2002–2005 Mr Peter Platts-Martin[23]
2002-2002 Mrs Ginny Jackson (Acting Head)
199?-200? Mr Richard Lyne-Pirkis (author, nom de plume: "Richard de Methley"[24])
1983?-19?? Mr Kenneth Green
1982?-1983? Mr David Austin (Acting Head)
1978?-1982? Mr Chris? Knox
1957–1978 Mr Gilbert Wheat[25]
19??-1957 Mr T Geoffrey ("Tiggy") Hughes

Notable former pupils[edit]

  • 1868 Robert Baden-Powell (pupil at Rose Hill School, Tunbridge Wells)
  • 1926-1929/12 [Lewen B.O. Tugwell pupil. Whilst there, worked in the Carpentry Class on the construction of the "ss Scouter". His two younger brothers also attended Rose Hill. (Robert Baden-Powell and his wife Olave were friends of Lewen's parents. When Lord Baden-Powell couldn't be present, Lewen's parents Basil and Mysie Tugwell alternated in giving out prizes on Prize Day at the school, and reading a message to the boys from the Chief Scout.)
  • 1968/9-1972/3 Robert Lawrence
  • Richard Hildick-Smith (part of the 2008 Beijing pre-Olympic British modern pentathlon team)[25]


  1. ^ a b c d Liza-Jane Gillespie (2008-01-20), School celebrates 175 years, The Gloucester News, retrieved 2011-02-09 
  2. ^ a b c d e "Establishment: Rose Hill School". Department for Education EduBase. Retrieved 2011-02-09. 
  3. ^ "Details for Rose Hill School". UK School Web Index. Retrieved 2011-02-09. 
  4. ^ a b "Home". Rose Hill Memories. 2009-07-04. Retrieved 2011-02-09. 
  5. ^ a b c d "Rose Hill Westonbirt School history and background". Rose Hill Westonbirt School. 2009. Retrieved 2011-02-09. 
  6. ^ a b Charlotte Shepherd (2008-07-09). "Private schools to merge". Gazette Series. Retrieved 2011-02-09. 
  7. ^ a b "Private school is set for merger (From Gazette Series)". The Gloucester News. 2008-07-08. Retrieved 2011-02-09. 
  8. ^ a b c d e f g "School building on the market for £3 m (From Gazette Series)". The Gloucester News. 2008-11-25. Retrieved 2011-02-09. 
  9. ^ Good Stuff IT Services (1985-09-09). "Google Map/Streetview of Rose Hill School - Alderley - Gloucestershire - England". British Listed Buildings. Retrieved 2011-02-09. 
  10. ^ a b
  11. ^ Richard Wilson, Alan Mackley (2000), Creating paradise: the building of the English country house, 1660-1880, Continuum International Publishing Group, pp. 216–217, ISBN 978-1-85285-252-8, retrieved 2011-02-09 
  12. ^ Colvin, Howard M "A Biographical Dictionary of British Architects, 1600-1840" p.1080
  13. ^ David Verey, Alan Brooks "Gloucestershire: The Cotswolds" p.134
  14. ^ Gloucestershire: The Cotswolds - Google Books. 2007-11-12. Retrieved 2011-02-09. 
  15. ^
  16. ^ "" (PDF). 
  17. ^ "Humphrey Cook Associates - Conservation - Alderley House". Retrieved 2011-02-09. 
  18. ^ lhutchinson. "Drama at old school as pupils return to meet stars of Casualty | News". This is Bristol. Retrieved 2011-02-09. 
  19. ^ "Holby City Filming News". Retrieved 2011-02-09. 
  20. ^ "" (PDF). 
  21. ^ Alderley House, HM Land Registry, retrieved January 2011
  22. ^ "Access to Archives". The National Archives. Retrieved 2011-02-09. 
  23. ^ a b "Head teacher sacked over plans for future (From Gazette Series)". 2005-04-01. Retrieved 2011-02-09. 
  24. ^ "Headmaster writes raunchy novel (From Gazette Series)". 2008-01-14. Retrieved 2011-02-09. 
  25. ^ a b "Pitch is off to a flying start (From Gazette Series)". 2005-02-11. Retrieved 2011-02-09. 

External links[edit]