GHANI SADDENED BY ASHDOWN HOUSE SCHOOL CLOSURE

Nus Ghani, MP for Wealden, was saddened to hear that Ashdown House Preparatory School has announced its closure at the end of this academic year. 

The school, previously attended by Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his sister Rachel, will be closing due to the impact of coronavirus after nearly 180 years operation.

In light of the financial challenges due to the outbreak of Covid-19, the school’s Trustees have concluded that they can no longer provide a high standard of education. Tom Beardmore-Gray, Chief Executive of the Trust of which Ashdown House is part, said: “It is with an incredibly heavy heart that the Trustees have come to the decision that closing the school is the only remaining option.”

From September, the school is projected to be less than a third full, following a decline in the number of international boarders and fewer new and existing parents taking up their places for the next academic year. Mr Beardmore-Gray confirmed that staff and the families of the school’s existing pupils have been informed, with the school now putting in place a comprehensive programme of support, guidance and consultation to help Ashdown’s community. 

Nus Ghani said: “It is always sad to see a good local school close, especially one with such a long and rich local history. The challenges of managing Covid-19 has put a strain on a number of businesses including the private school sector and the closure of Ashdown House Preparatory School will have an added impact on uncertainty for local parents”.