About us

Beechwood Park is a co-educational independent prep school providing a high standard of education for children aged rising 3 to 13, located in extensive parkland in the Hertfordshire countryside. The school has its own onsite nursery: Woodlands Nursery which opened in September 2015 in a state of the art, purpose-built building nestling at the edge of the woods.

The most recent review by The Good Schools’ Guide summarises the school as follows; “Going places. With its dynamic new head and, in the words of one happy parent, ‘feel good factor’, Beechwood should definitely be on the list of parents who want the certainty of a quality end destination for their child without compromising the joy of the journey.”

The school is organised into four areas; Woodlands Nursery, Junior, Middle and Senior departments.  The school is situated on the edge of Markyate village in a delightful parkland setting just 15 minutes drive from Harpenden and 20 minutes from St Albans from whose stations London St Pancras International can be reached (direct) in under 30 minutes.  The school runs an extensive coach service to number of local towns and villages and is located just 5 minutes from Junction 9 of the M1.

Woodlands Nursery prepares pupils for a smooth and stress free transition to Reception, when they join the the Junior department until Year 2. The Middle department is for children from Year 3 to 5. Pupils at the top of the age range (Years 6 to 8) are in the Senior department.  Pupils go on to a range of excellent secondary schools, many with scholarships. There are fantastic sporting facilities including an indoor pool complex, large sports hall and extensive playing fields. A large variety of sports are on offer as well as the traditional ones (rugby, football, hockey, netball, cricket (boys’ and girls’) such as martial arts, fencing, sailing and orienteering.

There are also many opportunities to enjoy drama with annual school productions and performances and also music where there are a number of very popular choirs, ensembles and orchestras. Many children learn a musical instrument. The CS, art and DT departments are very active and the school is lucky enough to have its own pottery room, complete with kiln, in the cellar. Making full use of its stunning surroundings, there is well-established Forest School, complete with a new outdoor classroom.

Flexi-boarding is available from Year 5 and is a very popular option. The boarding house hosts many fun evening events and activities for the children in addition to ensuring that homework and music practice is done.Open Mornings are held each term, and individual visits are also encouraged by appointment. Please see website for details.

Latest news

20 Jun 2022

Woodlands Nursery at Beechwood Scoops Nursery Award

In their annual Top 20 Awards, daynurseries.co.uk have awarded Woodlands Nursery at Beechwood Park a Top 20 Nursery in the East of England Award for the second year running.

20 Jun 2022

Woodlands Nursery at Beechwood Scoops Nursery Award

Head of Woodlands Nursery, Shirley Hayman said “We are thrilled to have been named in the Top 20 Nurseries in the East of England for the second year running, and to have the dedication, hard work, passion and commitment of our staff recognised by Daynurseries. Thank you to all our parents who have taken the time to leave such glowing reviews about Woodlands, and for entrusting your children to us”.

Head Ed Balfour added “The Woodlands team is thoroughly deserving of this award; every day they ensure that the youngest members of the Beechwood family have the best day by delivering a varied, creative and innovative curriculum coupled with unrivalled nurture and individual attention. I could not be happier for Shirley and her team. Thank you also to our Woodlands parents, who are endlessly supportive of what Shirley and her team do every day.”

This award comes hot on the heels of Woodlands Nursery being “highly commended” in the “Most Creative Learning Through Play” category of the Muddy Stilettos School Awards.


ABOUT WOODLANDS NURSERY

Staff ensure that every day at Woodlands Nursery is varied and fun, using their extensive experience to deliver a balanced and engaging routine for the the children to enjoy. Each day combines indoor and outdoor play, child-initiated and teacher-directed activities, and sporting and creative exploits, all designed to support pupils’ physical, personal, social, emotional and educational development.

Staff also make the most of our woodland setting and regular Forest School sessions, led by our qualified, experienced and passionate Forest School Leader, help to deepen children’s curiosity, build resilience, and encourage risk-taking in a safe environment.

Members of staff from the main school regularly visit Woodlands during the week – the Head and Deputy Head are frequent visitors, popping in for assemblies or story-times, and members of PE and Music Departments introduce the Woodlanders to specialist lessons.

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08 Jun 2022

Year 4 Pupil is Highly Commended in 2022 iArt Competitions

Congratulations to Malin Spencer-Lavan, Year 4 pupil at Beechwood Park, whose sculpture "Animal Rescuer" has been Highly Commended in the IAPS iArt Competition.

08 Jun 2022

Year 4 Pupil is Highly Commended in 2022 iArt Competitions

Each year, the Independent Association of Prep Schools' (IAPS) holds an annual art competition – an opportunity to focus on the innovative and inspiring artwork produced by its member schools. The standard of entry is exceptionally high, and we are delighted to announce that Beechwood Year 4 pupil Malin's entry has been Highly Commended in the Year 3-4 Category.

This year the theme of the competition was 'My role model', and Malin's entry, a sculpture using wire, pipe cleaners and cardboard, was themed around an animal rescuer. Malin's entry was accompanied by her statement about why she had chosen this theme; "My role model is an animal rescuer because they don't do it for fame, they do it because they love animals. I love animals too".

Beechwood Park Head of Art, Alice Kelway-Bamber said "Malin's sculpture is exceptional, and must have taken a lot of time and care to build. Not only is it impressive, it puts across an important message about looking after our animals and the wider world. We are very proud of her at Beechwood!"

Malin and her family have been invited to attend a prizegiving event in London later this month to celebrate her achievement.

Well done to Malin and to all the other winners and Highly Commended entries.



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30 May 2022

Whole School Comes Together to Celebrate HM The Queen's Platinum Jubilee

To celebrate HM The Queen's Platinum Jubilee, every member of the School enjoyed a day of celebrations, the highlight of which was the recreation of the Union Jack flag.

30 May 2022

Whole School Comes Together to Celebrate HM The Queen's Platinum Jubilee

On Friday 27 May, all 553 pupils at Beechwood Park, joined by staff, came together to recreate the Union Jack flag on the front lawn of the School as they kicked off a day of celebrations to mark the Queen's Platinum Jubilee/

Paul Reading, Maths Teacher at Beechwood, had calculated the necessary dimensions, and our Estates Team had carefully marked out the different coloured sections of the flag. Pupils then came to school dressed in either red, white or blue according to year group, and, in military fashion, filed into the correct sections, whilst our brass band played the National Anthem and other tunes.

Head of Geography and Boarding Houseparent Rob Humphreys then let his drone soar above the assembled crowd capturing some photos which will doubtless become part of the Beechwood archive for years to come.

Following on from this, there was a whole host of celebratory events, including a 1950s style sports day and fete (complete with tug of war, egg and spoon races, coconut shies and pin the jewel on the Queen's crown), collaborative art and music activities, and a cake competition, finished off with a whole school picnic.

Head Ed Balfour said "Beechwood certainly knows how to celebrate, and today was a wonderful display of community as we came together to mark this momentous occasion. Thank you to all the staff for organising a day that will stick in the Beechwood collective memory for years to come. On behalf of Beechwood - pupils past and present, parents, staff and governors - I would like to congratulate Her Majesty the Queen on her Platinum Jubilee"

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