Bursaries are provided to assist Senior School students who would benefit significantly from an education at The Abbey and whose parents could not otherwise afford to send them. Bursaries are means-tested and parental assets and income are assessed and reviewed on an annual basis. Every case will be taken on its individual merits but, among those who qualify financially, the academic potential of the pupil will be the overriding factor.

  • Bursaries are not available at the Junior School.
  • Parents should indicate to The Head of Finance and Resources that a bursary may be needed by emailing bursaries@theabbey.co.uk.
  • All bursary applications should be received by the last Friday in November in relation to a place for the following September.

Further information about Bursaries can be found in our admissions policy.


Scholarships are awarded in the Senior School to recognise excellence. The prestige in recognition of a girl’s ability is considerable and Scholars are expected to demonstrate commitment and enthusiasm throughout their school life.

Scholarships are not available at the Junior School.

Academic Scholarships

We offer Academic Scholarships at entrance to encourage excellence and aspiration and to celebrate students whose commitment to learning is exceptional.

An Abbey Academic Scholarship is confirmed for three years (Years 7-9) and then reviewed. If progress continues well and students remain committed to scholarship then these academic awards at point of entrance are confirmed for the remainder of their time at school.

There is a new application round for the Fifth Form (Years 9 and 10) and all new scholars will hold awards until they leave the School.

In the past we have awarded academic scholarships on the basis of performance in entrance assessment, supported by other evidence such as standardised testing. We will continue to use wider evidence but from this year it will be supplemented by an optional Scholarship Paper.

The format of the Scholarship Paper will change each year but the intention will remain the same: to give students who love learning the opportunity to enjoy playing with ideas. The only form of preparation required is to encourage curiosity and liveliness of mind: which are the best form of preparation for an Abbey education, and the qualities we seek to nurture in all our students.

Academic Scholarships provide a 10% discount per year on fees.

Applications for Academic Scholarships open 1 October 2021 and close 13 December 2021.

For Sixth Form entry (external only) Academic Scholarships are offered to the highest achieving candidates following a scholarship examination and interview on the Sixth Form Entrance Examination Day in November.

Specialist Scholarships

An Abbey Specialist Scholarship is confirmed for three years (Years 7-9). All Specialist Scholarships conclude at the end of Year 9, when there is a new application round for the Fifth Form (Years 10 and 11). There is then a final application round for the Sixth Form (Years 12 and 13). Often a Specialist Scholar will re-apply in the same discipline and may very well be successful, holding three successive scholarships. Some Scholars also have strengths in another discipline and wish to apply for a different scholarship path. Others decide to change focus and may step back from the scholarship programme. The system is designed to enable these changing decisions as well as keeping open an opportunity for those who may not be awarded scholarships in the first instance.

Much of the vibrancy of our community comes from the outstanding contribution our students make to sport and the arts, and the School provides exceptional opportunities for talented pupils to develop their skills and grow their enthusiasm alongside others who share their passion.

Applications for Specialist Scholarships open 1 June 2021 and close 1 November 2021.

Year 7 applicants will be informed by mid-December 2021 whether they have been shortlisted for interviews and auditions, which will take place in January 2022.

Sixth Form applicants will be informed by mid-November 2021 whether they have been shortlisted for interviews and auditions, which will take place in November/December 2021.

Use the form below to apply.

Art Scholarships

The Abbey offer the following:

  • Access to an enrichment programme of workshops and masterclasses led by artists/Artist in Residence 
  • Visits to galleries, museums or places of interest
  • A kit of quality specialist materials
  • Open studio sessions
  • Access to School Art clubs
  • Art mentoring
  • Exhibitions of work in the School’s gallery
  • Access to a wide range of media, techniques and processes in the Art Department’s purpose-built studios
  • A £500 annual discount on fees

What do we expect from our Art Scholars?

  • Regular attendance at Art clubs/open studio sessions
  • Attendance at Scholars’ workshops and masterclasses
  • Entry into art-related competitions
  • Role model within lessons
  • Willingness to assist the Art Department at Open Events as appropriate
  • Commitment, enthusiasm and engagement

Selection and assessment:

  • Applicants will be shortlisted based upon their Digital portfolio submission (see details below)
  • Shortlisted applicants will be invited for interview 
  • Shortlisted applicants will be expected to be able to discuss an artwork by another artist, preferably one seen firsthand, during the interview

Portfolio Advice

A completed Digital portfolio should include:

  • Up to 15 slides evidencing a combination of school and independent work completed by the applicant. This should be clearly labelled and annotated.   
  • Evidence of drawing from observation
  • Any 3D work should be photographed

Please see this guide on how to complete a ‘Digital portfolio’ for additional information

Drama Scholarships

The Abbey offer the following:

  • A year-long Drama enrichment programme, overseen by our Theatre Artist in Residence and our Head of Drama
  • A Drama Scholars’ trip every year
  • A workshop with an external theatre company or practitioner
  • A Drama Scholars’ production (Lower School, Upper School or a Whole School production)
  • Mentoring and support from the Drama Department
  • A £500 annual discount on fees

What do we expect from our Drama Scholars?

  • Regular attendance at Scholars’ club and production rehearsals 
  • The ability to make confident, informed acting choices, driven by an understanding of their character
  • The commitment to work as directors/co-directors, designers or technical crew
  • The ability to discuss drama thoughtfully and perceptively
  • The ability to work well with others, in an open and supportive manner
  • The ability to work imaginatively and independently
  • An open mind, enthusiasm and a sense of humour
  • A willingness to try new things
  • An interest in live theatre, as both audience and performer
  • Willingness to assist the Drama Department at events, including Open Events, and act as role models within the school community
  • Scholars are encouraged to participate in performance opportunities, as appropriate, including the Year 7 Pantomime, the Lower School Play, the Upper School Play, and the School Musical

Selection and assessment:

  • Acting experience, at school and/or with other organisations, as well as any Speech and Drama qualifications are welcome but not essential
  • It is not necessary to take, or intend to take, GCSE Drama, A-level Drama and Theatre, or IB Theatre to apply

For entry into Year 7
Applicants should prepare and learn a two-minute monologue to be taken from the list provided by the department. Applicants will also have a short interview and participate in a group workshop.

For entry into the Sixth Form
Applicants should prepare and learn a two-minute monologue from a play of their choice. The monologue must come from a published play and should not be a poem, an extract from a book, a standalone monologue from the internet, or one that the applicants have written themselves. Applicants will also have a short interview and participate in a group workshop. Applicants should read the whole play that their monologue is taken from, as they will be asked about the play and the character during their interview. Applicants should also be prepared to have their monologue redirected.

Music Scholarships

The Abbey is a very busy school in terms of music-making with a large variety of ensembles and activities that we hope will suit a wide range of musical interests and ability levels. Our Music Scholars are among our most enthusiastic and committed musicians who are happy to make music a principal focus of their school life. We rely on our Music Scholars to be role models for other musicians in the School and thus they are key members of the School’s musical ensembles.

The Abbey offer the following:

  • Free tuition at school on one instrument
  • Participation in the annual programme of Music Scholars’ events with the opportunity to prepare performances in collaboration with our Principal Accompanist
  • Workshops and masterclasses
  • Concert trips to hear major orchestras 
  • Regular dialogue between Music staff and instrumental teachers concerning progress, to include discussion of future opportunities for Music Scholars

What do we expect from our Music Scholars?

  • A high level of musical proficiency and enthusiasm 
  • A commitment to working with other musicians in chamber ensembles
  • Willingness to be role models for other musicians
  • Membership and leadership of appropriate ensembles
  • Full attendance at relevant music rehearsals and at concerts
  • Willingness to assist the Music Department at Open Events as appropriate

Selection and assessment:

  • Applicants are expected to have achieved a minimum standard of at least Grade 4, but musicality, potential and enthusiasm are considered to be equally important
  • Performance of a solo of their choice on their principal instrument
  • Performance of a solo of their choice on any other instruments they play, where time in the audition allows
  • Applicants will be required to undertake some supporting tests (e.g. sight-reading)
  • Discussion of musical activities at interview with the Music staff

Major Music Award (MMA)

This is an additional award available to Sixth Form applicants only.

This is a very prestigious award given to our most committed musicians. Applicants would be performing at least at Grade 8 equivalent level and expecting to take music as an A-level or IB option. Our MMA holders give extensively to the musical enrichment of The Abbey and this is reflected in the enhanced financial reward. Rigorous auditions are held. We award only one (or occasionally two) of these scholarships annually.


Sport Scholarships

The Abbey offer the following:

  • Access to a mentoring programme
  • Opportunity to receive specialist coaching
  • Professional advice on fitness and nutrition
  • Attendance at our annual Sports Awards
  • A £500 annual discount on fees

What do we expect from our Sport Scholar?

  • Performance at a high level in a range of sports and sporting disciplines
  • Competing for the School in all sports in which they are selected
  • Attendance at all Sport Scholars’ meetings
  • Role model on and off the pitch
  • Supporting the work of the PE Department
  • Willingness to assist the PE Department at Open Events as appropriate

Selection and assessment:

  • Applicants to provide references from current sports teachers or club coaches regarding the level at which they are competing
  • Video evidence can also be provided alongside a reference
  • Shortlisted applicants will be invited to attend an assessment day which includes an interview and assessments in a variety of physical activities

Specialist Scholarships application form



Please supplement your application with references, where applicable, to verify the achievements listed above - email: admissions@theabbey.co.uk

This form must be submitted to the Admissions department by 1 November for those seeking to join the following academic year.