Lancing College - Timeless values for a changing world

Lancing CollegeLancing College’s Chapel dominates the landscape, boldly announcing its presence in the peaceful countryside of the South Downs National Park. But there’s more to this school than grand Victorian buildings and superb academic record.

You can have it all at Lancing, says Headmaster Dominic Oliver, opportunities are everywhere – it’s about opening doors students didn’t even know where there.

”Lancing is about education in the broadest sense – whilst we push them to fulfil their academic potential it is also about preparing them for life, encouraging them to do things they may not have thought about before. Lancing will get the best out of students,” said Mr Oliver.

”We strive to make students into a successful person in the future in not just their career but also family life because of the values they learn here.”

Focussing on the individual is important to Lancing. ”We do not ‘cookie cutter’ people, we treat every student as an individual and give them the time, space and opportunity to grow,” said Mr Oliver. ”It’s not an exclusive place in the sense that people with all kinds of strengths – be they academic, creative, sporting or practical – come here and develop, enjoy and share a huge range of positive experiences.”

Built in 1848 by Christian educationalist Nathaniel Woodard, the senior school is set in 550 acres including its own working farm. Its stunning and ornate Chapel remains central to daily life at the school, used for gatherings as well as worship, but school is open to pupils from all religions, or none. Students join aged 13 or 16 and can take a wide range of GCSE and A level subjects.

Extensive refurbishment of original buildings is a continuing process. Science labs have been given a fresh new look. The Reeve Art School opened in 2008, a contemporary and original structure with spacious photographic and art studios, high ceilings and huge windows showing magnificent views to the sea, over surrounding farmland. Surely a perfect environment for nurturing creativity.

Rows of small practice rooms make up the Music School, with larger areas for groups to come together. There are a number of drama productions each year, and collaboration between music and drama in the form of a major musical production every two years. Usually staged in College’s own theatre, plays have also been put on in the Chapel crypt and a grand production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat was performed in the main Chapel with spectacular results. Audience members to praise the show included former pupil Sir Tim Rice.

One student said: “I’m not the best actor, but we all get a chance to be involved here, and the shows are great fun. That’s the best thing about being at a school like this. You can try everything and really enjoy being a part of it all. It’s the same with sport – I love that I can try so many different things.”

“People who are happy in their learning are productive in their learning”
Dominic Oliver

Sixty per cent of the 550 pupils are boarders, split into nine houses each with their own live-in staff. Houses are a mix of age groups, with younger pupils sharing rooms between two to five, and older students each having their own study bedroom.

“We have the same room for the whole year, so we really like to make it our own,” said one pupil. “I go home just about every weekend, but this is like the other half of my bedroom – I have my photos and posters up, it’s just like home.”

Most boarders come from Sussex and surrounding counties, but there are also overseas students, with 29 nationalities coming together in the classrooms. Lessons until 6pm during the week, some day pupils opt to stay until 9pm for the evening study sessions and clinics, giving them the same level of support as the boarders. School continues on Saturday morning, with sport matches held in the afternoon.

Lancing works closely in partnership with parents and pupils to create a happy, productive environment. ”People who are happy in their learning are productive in their learning,” explained Mr Oliver.

With this recipe of academic success, strong values, first-rate pastoral care and excellent facilities, Lancing College is sure to keep its fine reputation as a leading independent school.

Note from the Head

Lancing is a beacon, a beacon in two senses. High on the Downs above Shoreham-by-Sea, the school Chapel can be seen for miles around and at night, floodlit, it is an even more remarkable and inspiring sight. The second, more significant, sense is that the College has been an inspiration on the educational landscape ever since its founding in 1848. We prize the many academic achievements of our pupils alongside the development of the whole person, be that in sport, the arts or a multitude of other areas. Every element of Lancing guides and helps our pupils to live fulfilled, happy, and successful lives.

This is a dynamic, creative place, underpinned by Christian values. Young people thrive in our care. We hope to see you here soon: you will be made most welcome.

Dominic Oliver  MPhil Oxon


"My boarding house has the feel of being in a big house full of your mates."
Current pupil.

"My son’s first year at Lancing has been exceptional. The growth and change in him, socially and academically, has been extraordinary."
Parents of Third Form pupils (Year 9).

"When I was at Lancing College I had a huge amount of opportunity and that was crucial to my development."
Former pupil.

School news

12th Oct 2018
Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the President of the Republic of Ghana, returned to Lancing College, his old school, on Sunday 7 October. The President was welcomed by Head Master Dominic Oliver before touring the school and joining over 200 guests for a reception and lunch. Guests included ... more
30th Aug 2018
Following a strong performance in A Level results last week, pupils at Lancing College can celebrate a successful achievement in their GCSEs. 2018 has seen Lancing students take the revised 9-1 graded GCSE examinations in a wide range of subjects. Considerable success has been achieved with ... more
17th Aug 2018
In the first year of the reformed - and more challenging - vast majority of A Level subjects, Lancing College is delighted to report another very strong round of results: 55% of all examinations at A grade or better and 76% at A*- B grade 25% of the Upper Sixth cohort of students ... more
13th Jun 2018
Lancing College offers a diverse and rich range of sports; amongst those on offer, Hockey remains one of its most popular and successful. This term we celebrate the successes of Sixth Formers Mabel Woodley and Michael Laurent. Both pupils play for the College’s respective Girls’ and Boys’ ... more
31st May 2018
Lancing College has recently taken delivery of the new GrowModule365, a portable hydroponic growing system, which will allow the College Catering team to grow their own leaves, herbs, young vegetables and soft fruit at any time of the year, for use in the school’s own kitchen as well as provide ... more
6th Apr 2018
On Saturday 28 and Sunday 29 April, the BBC will return to Lancing College’s renowned Chapel to record and broadcast the Choral Evensong and Sunday Worship. This is very exciting and a testament to the wonderful College Choir and also the long-standing and respected traditions of worship at ... more
1st Feb 2018
This year, seven exceptionally talented Lancing students have secured highly coveted offers to study at Oxford and Cambridge. This underlines a further significant upward trend in Lancing’s rising, year-on-year success in the highly competitive arena of Oxbridge entrance. Oxbridge achievement ... more
26th Oct 2017
Lancing College is delighted to announce that Raphael (Rafi) Bellamy Plaice has just been awarded BBC Radio 2 Young Chorister of the Year 2017 (boys) in this year’s competition which was held at the BBC Philharmonic Studios at MediaCityUK in Salford. Currently in the Third Form at Lancing, ... more
29th Sep 2017
On Friday 22 September, Lancing College hosted BBC Radio 4’s Any Questions? in the College Chapel. Jonathan Dimbleby welcomed the audience of over three hundred and fifty to the historic Chapel, describing its features to guests both familiar and new. The BBC’s popular topical radio ... more
12th Sep 2017
Lancing College is to host the well-known and popular Radio 4 programme Any Questions? on Friday 22 September. The programme will take place in Lancing Chapel where the audience will hear answers to political, economic, social and moral issues of the day from questions posed from the ... more
24th Aug 2017
Following a strong performance in A Level results last week, pupils at Lancing College can celebrate a successful achievement in their GCSEs with 81% of exams taken scoring A* to B. Other highlights include: 57% of GSCEs taken scored A* to A and nearly 1/3 of grades were achieved at A* ... more
16th May 2017
Lancing College has been judged excellent across the board in its recent Education Quality Inspection. This process investigates the quality of academic and other achievements as well as the quality of pupils’ personal development. The published report highlights the fact that “pupils’ ... more
10th Feb 2017
Lancing College Sixth Form students have secured six highly prized offers to study at Oxford and Cambridge, achieving first class success across a range of the most competitive subjects. From the humanities to the sciences, students of exceptional talent have once again underlined Lancing’s ... more
16th Dec 2016
Lancing College Equestrian Centre, set in over 15 acres in a designated area of outstanding natural beauty, will provide stabling for up to 20 horses and riding facilities for all abilities. It is located just a short walk from the College at the former Hoe Court Farm, whose buildings have been ... more
16th Dec 2016
Ronan O’Hora, international pianist was perform on Thursday 12 January 2017, 7.45pm, at the Great School. Tickets at £10 (£8 concessions) are available in advance from the Music Secretary  (01273 465968; online from the Music Department pages on the College website ... more
2nd Dec 2016
A Christmas concert event held at the historic Lancing College is set to raise money for a childhood bereavement charity in the West Sussex area. Winston’s Wish is delighted to be holding its first Christmas Concert to celebrate its 10th year in the area. The Christmas Concert takes place ... more
24th Nov 2016
The Lancing College production of Coram Boy, which has just taken place, was directed by Matt Smith, Head of Drama, with musical adaptations by Neil Cox, Director of Chapel Music at the school. This ambitious enterprise played to a packed house each night. It was most enthusiastically ... more
7th Sep 2016
Lancing College is delighted to announce the appointment of the Rt Rev Jonathan Meyrick as its new Provost. Educated at Lancing, Bishop Jonathan is currently Bishop of Lynn and will take up his new position in addition to his current responsibilities in the Diocese of Norwich. Bishop ... more
18th Aug 2016
Pupils from Lancing College have performed extremely well in the 2016 A-levels, with 22% scoring A* and 77.2% A* to B. 53% of pupils secured grades of A* or A All five offers of places at Oxford and Cambridge have been successful Average UCAS Score 385, which is in excess of A*AA ... more
29th Jun 2016
James Chan, aged 18, has been praised as one of the nation’s brightest young composers. He entered the prestigious BBC Proms Inspire Competition, in the Senior Category for 17-18 year olds. There are two winners in each category, and it has just been announced on BBC Radio 3’s flagship music ... more
15th Jun 2016
The impressive etching, Three Women on the Tube, by Hermione Shaw, an Upper Sixth Pupil at Lancing College, has been selected for this year’s Royal Academy of Arts Summer Exhibition. This is a real accolade, as this exhibition is the world’s largest open submission show, with 12,000 entries, ... more

School details

Address: Lancing, West Sussex, BN15 0RW
Phone: 01273 465 805
Head: Dominic Oliver
Founded: 1848
Pupils: 550. Day: 134 boys, 84 girls; Boarding: 206 boys, 126 girls
Ages: 13-18
Ofsted / ISI: Click to view the report
Prospectus: N/A


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