Ashbourne College

W8 4PL

Currently rated ‘Outstanding’ by Ofsted, Ashbourne College prides itself on adopting a University-styled ethos and specialises in preparing students for higher education through A-Level and GCSE courses.

Founded in 1981 by its current Principal and Director Michael Kirby, it is located in the heart of Kensington, London - just 100 metres from Kensington Palace to be exact - and was once a single-room building which has evolved into four floors, filled with state-of-the-art facilities.

In the early 1980s, Ashbourne specialised in Maths, Sciences and Economics, while it now teaches 35 subjects, including The Humanities, Social Sciences and Creative Arts. The two-year A-Level programme now sits at the heart of everything it does, and is backed up by its small but growing GCSE department, founded in the early 1990s.

Many enthusiastic, highly-motivated students from all over the world have made their way through the doors of this institution and have achieved excellent exam results and proceeded to top British universities. In 2015, more than 50% of its students secured places to study at Russell Group universities including University College London (UCL), Imperial College, London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), Oxford and Cambridge. Ashbourne students are encouraged to be independent and take ownership of their learning in order to prepare for life’s biggest challenges. It counts its small size as one of its main strengths, allowing for a more personalised learning experience for all. In fact, students in tutorial-style classes rarely exceed 10 in one group. It also allows for more assessment through homework.

Swelling student numbers and upgrades to its buildings have gone hand-in-hand with Ashbourne’s rising reputation. A number of teachers have taught at the college for well over a decade alongside a strong and dedicated administration team.

London Accommodation

Still presided over by its founder, Michael Kirby was educated at the universities of Toronto and London, where he read Aerospace Engineering and Statistics. He is known as a key figure in the promotion of independent education in the UK through bodies such as the Council for Independent Further Education (CIFE) and the British Council Education Counselling Service.

Perhaps one of Ashbourne’s most alluring features is its location. In the heart of England’s capital, it offers easy access to the diverse cultural landscape that is London, and its numerous attractions. Nearby are Hyde Park, Kensington Park, Imperial College, the Museum of Natural History, the Victoria and Albert Museum, as well as the Royal Albert Hall and the magnificent shopping of Knightsbridge and Kensington. It is a safe, clean and a quiet area of residential and commercial London.

Ashbourne offers a wide range of extra-curricular activities, ranging from critical-thinking seminars and an Astro-Particle Physics Club to Bollywood dancing and Go-karting. There is an annual Christmas revue and several overseas trips each year, broadening students’ horizons with fascinating trips. Staff and students celebrated the college’s 35th anniversary at the start of 2017, when an impressive display of students’ artwork went on display, putting the learners at the very heart of the occasion