Playing the game: why sport matters in schools

These days it is easy to become fixated on academic results but education is so much more than that. We asked leading independent schools in the county what part sport plays for them and their pupils

School: Ardingly CollegeAddress: Ardingly College, Haywards Heath, RH17 6SQ Tel: 01444 893000Website: 

What is your sporting ethos? Excellence and participation for all.What sports do you offer?  Soccer, Hockey, Netball, Tennis, Rounders, Athletics, Badminton, Squash, Fencing, Sailing, Biathlon, Swimming, Horse Riding, Basketball, Trampolining, Archery, Karate, Pilates, Yoga, Dance, Golf , Rugby, Gymnastics, Sports Conditioning, Shooting, Table Tennis. Skiing,Polo

Have you won any notable competitions?ESFA U18 CUP;  ISFA U18; Independent Schools Ski Champions 2009/10 Sussex County U14/15 Cricket2008/9 ; ISFA U18 6 aside 2009

Do you have any notable sportsmen or women among your alumni or current pupils?Gavin Thompson – UK middle distance and cross runnerJoel Kidger – UK middle distance runnerSara Langridge – UK modern pentathleteToby Pierce – previously at Sussex CCCFrances Houslop – England hockey and OlympianBen Brown – currently at Sussex CCCAdam Virgo –Celtic F.CMax Chiltern  Formula 2 Racing DriverMonty Gimpel (Leeds FC Current )Daniel Baker England U16 Hockey(Current)John Dollery ISFA U16 Captain (Current)Monty Gimpel ISFA U18 Player of the Year (Current)Abidene Sankande England U17 Cricket (Current)Sussex CCC U14-U18  J Higgins, J Howard, H Simms, T Howard, G Lawrence, H Clarke, J Taylor , J Bowman, A Norrington  J Phelps, M Bidlake ( current pupils)ISFA U16   J Dollery, M Gimpel,J Higgins,D Sargent,J Taylor,J Fitzgibbon(Current)ISFA U16  J Dudas M GimpelDaniel Baker , Olivia Bevan  South England  U/16 Girls Hockey( current pupils)

School: Brighton and Hove High School Address: Montpelier Road, Brighton BN1 3AT  Tel:  01273 73411Website: www.bhhs.gdst.netWhat is your sporting ethos?To involve as many girls as possible in physical activity – to give them life-long learning and enjoyment of sport. To develop good team spirit.  

What sports do you offer?  Dance ,gymnastics, badminton.netball,hockey, football, athletics, rounders,yoga, body combat, tennis, swimming 

Have you won any notable competitions?BHHS competes with schools in Brighton & Hove, with Independent schools in the wider area and with schools within the Girls Day School Trust. Both the U13 and U15 netball teams went through to the quarter final of the Sussex Schools Cup. 

Do you have any notable sportsmen or women among your alumni or current pupils?Alumni -Karen Pickering MBE, who was an outstanding member of the British swimming squad from 1986 to 2005Kirsty Javis –competes nationally in Rhythmic GymnasticSophie Coleman – World Junior Duathlon Champion now training for London 2012

Current pupils - Lily Pryke  U18 Sussex Youth Sonar Dinghy Racing TeamIsabel Smith – won the junior badminton Mid Sussex championshipsRebecca Waller – Brighton & Hove Cricket TeamSchool: Brighton CollegeAddress: Eastern Road, Brighton BN2 0ALTel: 01273 704200         Website: 

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What is your sporting ethos?The College has an established reputation for sporting excellence and continues to be one of the country’s leading sporting schools. Pupils both past and present have enjoyed success at the highest level and many have gone on to represent their country after leaving the college. The philosophy for Sport is based on participation and enjoyment. When pupils are involved and happy, they are more likely to achieve their potential Teams compete on a weekly basis throughout the year, with Saturday fixtures played against other major independent schools in the south east.  Teams are also entered in national competitions in Rugby, Squash, Cricket, Netball and Girls Hockey.

What sports do you offer?Rugby, Football, Cricket (Boys & Girls), Athletics (Boys & Girls), Girls, Hockey & Tennis, Netball, Cross Country, Squash 

Have you won any notable competitions?Netball – County, Regional and National FinalistsRugby – County 

Do you have any notable sportsmen or women among your alumni or current pupils?Current pupils – Matthew Lasis (England Hammer Thrower), Sophie Benton (England Hockey Squad GK), James Tyas (Scotland Rugby), Harry Leonard (Scotland Rugby), Georgia Adams (Sussex CCC Academy), Izzy Noakes (ECB Academy)Former pupils (currently playing) – Matthew Prior (England Cricket), Holly Colvin (England Cricket), Sarah Taylor (England Cricket), Laura Marsh (England Cricket), Ollie Phillips (Stade Francais Rugby),  John Hart (Wasps Rugby), Jordan Turner-Hall (Harlequins Rugby), Ross Chisholm (Harlequins Rugby), Ollie Richards (Leeds Carnegie Rugby), Ben Maidment (Cambridge University & England Students Rugby), Matt Berry (England Students Rugby)Former pupils (recently retired) – Clare Connor (Cricket), Alex King (Rugby), Carl Hopkinson (Cricket)

School: Buckswood SchoolAddress: Broomham Hall, Guestling, Nr Hastings. TN35 4LTTel: 01424 813813Website: What is your sporting ethos?Buckswood School is committed to providing the best environment and facilities possible. This commitment endeavours to provide for the full spectrum of Buckswood sportsmen and women, from preparing ambitious talented sportsman/woman for sport at the highest level to supporting those who wish to enjoy sport on a social level. All pupils are expected to abide by a code of conduct for sportsmanship, and as true sportsmen and women support the “unwritten rules’ of the game.What sports do you offer?Rugby, hockey, football, basketball, netball, tennis, cricket, biathlon, athletics, rounders, golf, netball, cross country, archery, horse-riding, horse polo, Have  you won any notable competitions?Our most recent achievement is the Under 14 regional Football Champions 2011Do you have any notable sportsmen or women among your alumni or current pupils?All our current students are notable sportsmen and women in their own right, as they play to their best ability and with the true meaning of sportsmanship.Students who have taken their abilities further include National Sailing and Archery representatives, and a number in the Sussex County football, hockey, cricket and rugby teams

School: Dorset HouseAddress: Church Lane, Bury, Pulborough, West Sussex, RH20 1PBTel: 01798 831456Website: 

What is your sporting ethos?Excellence in sport, sport for all 

What sports do you offer?Michaelmas term: Football and NetballLent term: Rugby and HockeySummer Term: Cricket, Athletics, Tennis and Rounders.We have a well structured PE curriculum comprising gymnastics, health-related fitness, swimming and softball 

Have you won any notable competitions?We won the National Prep School Squash Tournament.

Do you have any notable sportsmen or women among your alumni or current pupils?Currently we have a nationally ranked squash player who was number one in 2009. We also have pupils who play football, tennis, cricket and squash for the county.  A lot of our past students often go on to play county rugby. 

School:  Farlington SchoolAddress: Strood Park, Horsham RH12 3PNTel: 01403 254967Website: 

What is your sporting ethos and what sports do you offer?We want to encourage girls throughout the school to participate in and enjoy sport and to maintain their interest and develop a healthy lifestyle beyond school. There are ample opportunities for girls to compete at the highest possible level both inside and outside school with local, regional and national competitions in hockey, netball, cross-country, athletics, tennis, rounders, swimming and riding. In addition to traditional sports, we offer courses in fencing, judo, football, rugby, trampolining and badminton, to name just a few. 

Have you won any notable competitions?At the recent National Schools Equestrian Association Championships, which involves schools from throughout the country, Farlington’s Mini team came first in the Jumping with Style class and in the Intermediate Show Jumping class Farlington’s team again came first. 

Do you have any notable sportswomen among your alumni or current pupils?We have had a number of girls who have competed at national level in both swimming and cross-country. Rebecca Clarke, currently in Year 11, is a very able sailor who is now in her transitional year into Olympic class Laser and will be competing in the Nationals in August at Weymouth, which is the Olympic venue for 2012.

School: Great Ballard SchoolAddress: Eartham, Near Chichester, West Sussex PO18 0LRTel: 01243 814236Website: 

What is your sporting ethos?Sport is an important part of school life.  Children should have the opportunity to acquire skills in a wide range of sports and be able to compete as part of a team in inter-school matches.  Enthusiastic, well qualified sports staff ensure that those of national standard and those of more modest ability are equally well catered for. 

What sports do you offer?There is some sort of sporting opportunity every day with team sports including football, rugby, hockey, cricket, netball and rounders.  All will take part in athletics, swimming, dance, gymnastics, while the activity programme includes tennis, golf, mountain biking, judo, trampolining and much more.

School: Handcross ParkAddress: Handcross, Haywards Heath, West Sussex, RH17 6HFTel: 01444 400526Website:

 What is your sporting ethos?We always play our strongest teams at representative level, but want to give every pupil the opportunity to pull on the Handcross Park shirt and represent their school. We believe very much in fair play and enjoyment and never adopt a 'win at all costs' attitude.

What sports do you offer?Football (coached by Chelsea), rugby and cricket are the major boys' sports and netball, hockey and rounders the girls, although some are played by both.  The list of opportunities, however, is far longer and includes tennis, athletics, swimming, golf, horse riding, basketball, volleyball, badminton, aerobics, rock climbing, sailing, cross-country, triathlon, cycling, gymnastics, judo and trampoline.

Have you won any notable competitions?We regularly have individuals who represent their county in national competitions and often have county champions amongst including the current Sussex U11 tennis champion.

Do you have any notable sportsmen or women among your alumni or current pupils?Tania Streeter, the world record holding 'free diver', is a former pupil.

School: Hurstpierpoint CollegeAddress: College Lane, Hurstpierpoint, West Sussex BN6 9JSTel: 01273 833 636Website: 

What is your sporting ethos? Every pupil who wishes to, is likely to represent the School at some level; we love our B & C teams! Coaching is outstanding and Hurst boys and girls are instinctively supportive of each other whatever the activity. They play not just to win but also for the joy of it and, just as importantly, learn how to be gracious in victory and dignified in defeat. 

What sports do you offer? Major girls’ sports: hockey, netball, athletics, rounders and tennis. Major boys’ sports: rugby, hockey, cricket and athletics. Minor sports include swimming, squash, boys' tennis, football, golf and triathlon.

Have you won any notable competitions? Boys' hockey U14 and U16 West Sussex 2011 championshipGirls' netball U14 and U16 SISNA champions 2010; U16 Sussex Knock-out cup champions 2010Do you have any notable sportsmen or women among your alumni or current pupils? Alumni - Rugby: Noah Cato - England U19/U20 - Saracens, Charlie Matthews - England U18/U20 - Harlequins. Equestrian: Lucy Bunn, English International show jumperCurrent Pupils – 6th played for England U19 cricket team in Sri Lanka 2011; girl in England hockey U16 squad 2011; girl showjumper, - Team GBR International Pony Squad; member winning team, Nations Cup, Belgium. 

School: Lancing CollegeAddress: Lancing, West Sussex, BN15 0RWTel: 01273 452213Website: 

What is your sporting ethos?At Lancing College we think that development and realisation of potential is the key. Giving the pupils the opportunity is central – regardless of ability. We aim to provide for this in enjoyable surroundings with enthusiastic support.

What sports do you offer?Boys: Football, Hockey, Cross-Country, Cricket, Tennis, Rugby, Basketball, Fives, Squash, Badminton, Swimming, Climbing, Sailing, Athletics, Volleyball, Rifle Shooting, Clay Pigeon Shooting, Fly Fishing, Various Forms of Dance, Fencing, Karate,

Girls: Hockey, Netball, Cross Country, Swimming, Tennis, Cricket, Football, Rounders, Fives, Squash, Athletics, Climbing, Badminton, Volleyball. Ballet and other forms of Dance, Fencing, Karate,

Have you won any notable competitions?ISFA Southern Schools Football Champions 2008-09Aldenham and Dunelm Cup Winners (Swimming – Senior Independent Schools national titles)County Cup runners-up 2008-09Langdale Cup runners-up 2010 (U18 T20 Cricket)Lexus Cup Winners 2008 and 2009 (U18 Squash)Bisley Shooting returns numerous trophies and honours each yearNational Boarding Schools Cup semi-finalists 2010 (Boys’ U18 Hockey)Sussex League Finalists 2009 and 2010 (U18 Boys’ Tennis)We also have a very strong OL network that does well nationally – particularly in Football 

Do you have any notable sportsmen or women among your alumni or current pupils?Andrew Frampton OL – currently at Swindon Town FCCharlotte Woolliscroft OL – swimmer

School: Our Lady of SionAddress: Senior School: Gratwicke Road, Worthing, West Sussex, BN11 4BLJunior School: Westbrooke, Worthing, West Sussex, BN11 1RETel: 01903 228638Website: is your sporting ethos?Sport and physical education are important areas of personal development. Our aim is to make them an enjoyable and normal part of school, and later, adult life. Sporting activities encourage social interaction and a fair and competitive spirit. Our school motto, Consideration Always, encourages all members of the school community to apply that fairness to every aspect of their school life.

What sports do you offer?Athletics, badminton, basketball, cricket, cross country, dance, football, gymnastics, hockey, netball, rounders, rugby, squash, swimming, table tennis, tennis, volleyball and fitness training. School teams take part in district and county leagues and tournaments and Junior and Senior Schools both hold an annual Sports Day.

Have you won any notable competitions?Under -15 Rugby District League winnersUnder-13 Basketball District Tournament winnersUnder-14 Girls’ Basketball 2nd & 3rd in District TournamentUnder -15 Netball 2nd in Under-16 District LeagueCross Country – 2 students selected to run for Sussex at the Southern Inter-Counties

School: Shoreham CollegeAddress: St Julian's Lane, Shoreham-by-Sea, BN43 6YWTel: 01273 592681Website: is your sporting ethos?At Shoreham College our sports team ensures that every child is given the opportunity to be part of the team representing their house or the College in a wide range of sports.  It is not the winning that counts, but wanting to win!We play fixtures against a range of local state and independent schools and have had regional and national success in various Independent Schools’ Association events.  We liaise with local clubs so that our talented sportsmen and women are nurtured beyond the College coaching system where appropriate.

What sports do you offer?Athletics, badminton, basketball, cricket, circuit training, cross-country, dance, football, gymnastics, hockey, netball, rounders, rugby, softball, scuba diving, swimming, tag rugby, tennis, table tennis, uni-hoc, volleyball.

Have you won any notable competitions?U15 Southern Area Partnership basketball 2006/2007U14 Southern Area Partnership cricket 2010Independent Schools’ Association (ISA) Indoor Athletics Champions (U11Boys and Girls) 2009 

Do you have any notable sportsmen or women among your alumni or current pupils?Stuart Allcock – U16 Squash at County, regional and national levelCharlotte Allcock – County squash and U14 CricketAmelia Paul – competes in European ice skating competitionsRecent ISA National Champions: Tom Welch, Lucie Street, Aidan Cannon, Ryan Scott, Luca Bigg and Amelia RitchieSophie Walls – National Horse and Trap racing championHarry Bushby – National Under 16 Gymnastics championMax Spice – National champion surferSeveral county Cricket, Swimming, Rugby and Football players

School: Sompting Abbotts Preparatory School            Address: Church Lane Sompting BN15 0AZTel: 01903 235 960          Website: 

What is your sporting ethos?   Encouraging every child to fulfil their sporting potential. 

What sports do you offer?  Football, rugby, cricket, netball, hockey, rounders, cross country, swimming, rifle shooting and squash over 30 acres. At Sompting Abbotts we have thirty acres of beautiful woodlands, gardens and grounds; the facilities include a double hard tennis/netball court, four bay cricket practice nets and a heated outdoor swimming pool.  

Have you won any notable competitions?We play regular matches against a wide variety of local of local schools.Do you have any notable sportsmen or women among your alumni or current pupils?Professional golfers Garry Evans and Peter Roberts. 

School: St Bede’s Prep and Senior SchoolsAddress: St Bede’s Prep School, Duke’s Drive, Eastbourne BN20 7XLSt Bede’s Senior School, Upper Dicker, East Sussex BN27 3QHTel: 01323 843252Website:

What is your sporting ethos?   To allow all pupils and students to reach their level of excellence through both team and individual participation in the sports of their choice.  This ethos is as relevant to those who choose to play recreational sport as it is to those who wish to gain international recognition. 

What sports do you offer?Athletics, Badminton, Basketball, Cricket, Equestrian, Football, Hockey, Netball, Rugby, Rounders, Squash, Swimming, Tennis 

Have you won any notable competitions?2009 England Schoolboys’ Football Champions, current title holders of:Cricket: Sussex U18s, Sussex U15sFootball: Southern Independent League, Girls U18                              Independent Schools champions, Girls U15Independent National Sixes championsHockey: Girls U18, U15 Sussex champions, 2010 Boys U14, U15, U16, U18 Sussex championsNetball:  U18 Sussex Schools and Sussex Independent Schools championsSwimming: County Gala champions     Tennis:  U18, U16 Boys Sussex Independent champions, U15 Boys Sussex Shield, U15, Girls Sussex shield, U18 Boys ranked fourth nationally, 2008 U15 Boys National champions 

Do you have any notable sportsmen or women among your alumni or current pupils?Jono Ketley – Home Counties Decathlon championJay Amin – sixth at UK Junior games (100 metres)Badminton: Adam and Amber Lam – National Independent Schools doubles winnersCricket: Ollie Rayner and Luke Wells – Sussex County Cricketers, Callum Jackson – England U16, Chiara Green – England U18Football: Dan Harding – Southampton FC, James Norwood – Exeter FC, Romulo Dos Santos - Benfica FC, Matt Armstrong-Ford – Exeter FC, Larry Egunjobi and Soloman March U18 ISFAHockey: Dilly Newton – England U21 (player of the tournament at 2010 European championships), Nick Paxton and Lauren Allymohammed – England Performance SquadRugby: Rob Buchanan – England U20s and HarlequinsTable Tennis:Yolanda King – U18 England championTennis:  Clare Wood and Julie Salmon – former GB and WTA tour players

School: Burgess Hill School for GirlsAddress: Keymer Road, Burgess Hill, RH15 0EGTel: 01444 241050Website: 

What is your sporting ethos?The PE Department prides itself on offering a quality physical education programme that meets the needs of every individual pupil.  The department feels strongly that there is a place within the curriculum and extra-curricular programme to include a wide range of activities that fully reflect the ‘Sport for All’ ethos of the school as well as providing an excellent level of coaching, in the core sports, to ensure those who thrive on the competitive element have the opportunity to compete at local, regional and national level.  The department sees enjoyment at all levels as a measure of their success.  We are also keen to promote sport in the community and actively encourage the girls to get involved in club sport outside school.

What sports do you offer?Netball, hockey, cross-country, volleyball, tennis, rounders, athletics, basketball, football, cricket, rowing and dance. 

Have you won any notable competitions?Cross Country – in 2010 Sussex Schools Junior Champions and 4th in Regional Final (Top Sussex School)In 2010, U14 team competed in the Regional stages of the Netball Nationals.In Aegon Tennis Competition 2010, the U15 team were Sussex Champions and got through to the Regional stages of the competition.Athletics – over the last 4 years, we have been to 3 Regional Finals and qualified for 2 National finals in the Track & Field Cup.2010 – U12 team won the South East Schools Tennis Tournament.2011 – U15 team got through to the final of the Sussex Hockey Cup. 

Do you have any notable sportsmen or women among your alumni or current pupils?Caroline Atkins (alumni) – Women’s England Cricket SquadLaura Moss-Bromage (alumni) - British team to compete at the World Championships for Icelandic Horses in August 2007Ella Popely (current student) – show jumping - 

School: Moira House Girls SchoolAddress: Upper Carlisle Road, Eastbourne, BN20 7TEWebsite: What is your sporting ethos?Sport for All and strong school/club links are at the heart of sport at Moira House Girls School. Pupils are given opportunities to develop their full potential in a range of activities. What sports do you offer?Hockey, netball, swimming, cricket, trampolining, horse riding, water polo, aqua fit, Yoga, tennis, football, badminton, basketball, volleyball, rounders, athletics, cross country, fitness, gymnastics, dance. Have you won any notable competitions? U13 Sussex Cricket Champions, U15 Indoor area cricket winners. National School Relay Finalists (swimming).Do you have any notable sportsmen or women among your alumni or current pupils?Hope Beland - England Golf Training, Flora Alessandroni - Italian Pentathlon Trials, Rosie Sharp - Area Hockey Squad,  Alice Greenland - Top 10 in country for breaststroke in her age group. Rosie Sharp, Pippa Mockett, Kirsty Taylor - East Sussex Netball Team.

School: Christ’s HospitalAddress: Horsham, RH13 0YPTel: 01403 211293Website:

What is your sporting ethos?and girls sport All pupils are encouraged to participate in the major team games, developing physical competence and confidence. Christ's Hospital provides the opportunity for pupils to be creative, competitive and face up to different challenges as individuals and in teams.The major team games for pupils who show a degree of aptitude for an activity are compulsory up to the Lower Sixth Form. The School values the positive experiences which can be gained from working in a team.Pupils at Christ's Hospital also get the chance to explore other sporting interests in both a competitive and more recreational setting.

What sports do you offer?Boys: Rugby, football and cricketGirls: Netball, hockey

Have you won any notable competitions?During the last few years, four athletes qualified for the English schools and Christ’s Hospital has probably been the most successful Fives school in the country in the past three years.

Do you have any notable sportsmen or women among your alumni or current pupils?Christ’s Hospital School’s sporting history embraces some famous names including England bowler John Snow and MCC captain Dennis Silk. The School’s director of Rugby is Andy Turner who coaches at Harlequins and is the coach of the England under 18 South group, as well as coaching the Sussex Senior team.  The School also excels in hockey and netball.

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