Home | West Buckland School

West Buckland School

Barnstaple, Devon, England EX32 0SX
Tel: +44 (0) 1598 760281

Private School (Fee Paying) Co-Educational 3 - 18 Years Day & Boarding (Flexi, Full, Weekly)

West Buckland gives its pupils an excellent all-round education for life, firmly based on Christian principles. Many people carry away memories of the friendly and lively atmosphere of the school, and the unspoilt countryside that surrounds it, near...

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Word From The Head

Head Photo

Mr Phillip Stapleton

Children learn well at West Buckland School: not just academically, though success here is at a high level, but to enjoy the richness of life, develop their talents for their own and for others' good and become responsible members of society.

Many people carry away memories of the friendly and lively atmosphere of the school, and the unspoilt countryside that surrounds it, near the edge of Exmoor. There is a strong sense of community, and an emphasis on involving each individual as fully as possible. The school is co-educational at all ages, with each house containing both boarding and day members. Many of the latter choose to board in their later years, as a stage towards the independence of adulthood. The close liaison between the preparatory school (from the age of three) and the senior school makes it easy to plan the education of a family as a whole, as day or boarding pupils.

Academic success is built by excellent teaching and attention to individual needs. Numbers in each set range from about ten to a maximum of twenty-four. The options system at GCSE allows individuals to develop special interests without omitting key subjects. The pattern of A-level subjects allows similar flexibility of choice and balance.

Outside the classroom there are many opportunities. Sport and outdoor activities play a large part in the life of the school, which makes good use of its location: the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme is especially popular. The performing arts centre provides broad opportunities for music and drama. Recent developments include new purpose-built boarding houses for boys and girls, a new Preparatory School building and all-weather pitch. Substantial investment has been made in IT for teaching and learning throughout the campus, as well as an IT Centre. The Jonathan Edwards Sports Centre was completed and opened in 2008 equipped with an impressive four badminton court sized hall, state of the art fitness suite, Club Room and classroom. A new development housing the Art, Design and Technology and Theatre was opened in 2010. September 2015 saw the opening of a fantastic new co-ed Sixth Form Boarding House with 70 single en-suite rooms and a new Library and Study Centre for use by the whole senior school.

West Buckland gives its pupils an excellent all-round education for life, firmly based on Christian principles.

Alumni - R F Delderfield (playwright and novelist); Brian Aldiss (writer); John Ashworth (Director LSE); Charlotte Read (England and Great Britain Fencer); Victor Ubogu and Stephen Ojomoh (England rugby players); Jonathan Edwards CBE (triple jump world record holder, Olympic Gold Medalist and World Champion).

Open Days, Visits & Events

06-05-2024 - Whole School Open Day

West Buckland School is hosting a Whole School Open Day on Monday, May 6th, at 9:30 am. It's a normal school day for us, and we're thrilled to welcome you for an insider's look at our vibrant community with a chance to experience our school in action. Come tour our facilities and meet our Head, Prep School Head, teachers and students. Explore our dynamic learning environment and uncover what truly sets our school apart. For those interested in our Prep School, we have an array of exciting activities planned, from art and football to music and beyond. We are looking forward to meeting you.

What We Offer

  • A Level - Advanced Level Examinations
  • GCSE - General Certificate of Secondary Education
  • LAMDA - London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art
  • Business studies
  • Design Technology
  • Drama/Theatre
  • Economics
  • ICT
  • Painting/Sculpture
  • Philosophy/Ethics
  • Photography
  • Psychology
  • Theology
  • English As Foreign/2nd Language
  • French
  • Spanish
  • Athletics
  • Badminton
  • Basketball
  • Cricket
  • Cross-Country
  • Fitness Training
  • Football
  • Golf
  • Gymnastics
  • Hockey
  • Martial Arts
  • Netball
  • Rounders
  • Rugby
  • Squash
  • Swimming
  • Tennis
  • Volleyball
  • Adventure Training
  • Astronomy
  • Ballet
  • Cadets
  • Canoeing
  • Chess
  • Dance
  • Drama
  • Duke of Edinburgh
  • First Aid/Life Savers
  • Fishing
  • Horse Riding & Management
  • Language Club
  • Public Speaking
  • Rock Climbing
  • Rowing
  • Shooting
  • Visual Impairment (VI)
  • Physical Disabilities
  • Dyslexia or Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLD)
  • Moderate Learning Difficulties (MLD)
  • Epilepsy
  • Hearing Impairment (HI)
  • Armed Forces Children
  • Expatriate Children
  • Gifted Children
  • International Students
  • Rail Services
  • School Bus Service
  • Special Diets


  • Assessment
  • Entry test or exam
  • GCSE results
  • Interview
  • Report from previous school
  • Trial day at school
  • Academic
  • Armed forces discounts or bursaries
  • Art
  • Financial Assistance
  • Music
  • Siblings
  • Sixth Form
  • Sport
  • Christian
  • English

    Age Range & Fees

    Age Range3 to 18
    Annual Day Fees *8310 to 16455
    Annual Weekly Boarding Fees *12570 to 12570
    Annual Full Boarding Fees *31320 to 37500
    * Currency:

    Number Of Pupils

    57Full Boarding35
    25Weekly Boarding26
    Boys Girls

    Number Of Staff

    Full-time: 81
    Part-time: 43

    % Pupils Gaining
    GCSE/IGCSE Passes 5 - 9

    % Pupils Gaining
    A Level Grades A – C

    % Pupils Going
    To University

    School Reviews

    Good Schools Guide

    A gem of a school in an exceptional location. West Buckland is an impressive all-rounder school with excellent facilities, great teaching and a real sense of community. Children work hard, get lots of fresh air and don’t grow up too fast. Best of all, they seem to have a whale of a time while...