A SCHOOL in Blandford is markings its 70th anniversary by launching scholarships and other initiatives to broaden access to the school.

Knighton House School has confirmed a series of new schemes, including admissions for boys and a refurbishment of the school’s boarding accommodation.

The school has now launched the Knighton House 70 Appeal specifically to fund new scholarships for pupils from the local area and to widen access to the school’s teaching and learning experiences on its 35-acre campus at Durweston in Dorset.

“This is a hugely exciting time for everyone connected with the school as we start our 70th anniversary celebrations,” said Knighton House Headmaster, Robin Gainher.

He added: “The announcements we are making today demonstrate our passion for delivering truly inspirational education for all pupils and our clear commitment to build on our strengths and reputation for forward-thinking.

“Increasing access and progressively welcoming boys to the school signals an important step in our evolution while maintaining our long-established agenda of empowerment and confidence for girls.

“A new and dynamic co-educational setting beckons and we can’t wait to get started.”

For the first time in its history, the school is now accepting boys up to and including Year Six as day pupils.

This will be extended to include Years 7 and 8 with effect from September 2021.

Work is now proceeding on a planned refurbishment of the school’s boarding accommodation in preparation for the move to a full co-education environment in 2022.

The announcements coincide with the news that Bryanston has confirmed the acquisition of the land and buildings of the Knighton House campus.

Paul Slight, Joint Chair of Governors at Knighton House, added: “While we are all proud of the remarkable achievements of Knighton House over the past seventy years, we have never rested on our laurels and have always looked to build on the unique qualities and ethos that have underpinned the school’s continuing success.

“It is very fitting, therefore, to celebrate such a significant year with a special scholarships initiative that will enable more local children to benefit from our superb teaching and learning environment.

“Adaptability, innovation and agility are key qualities in today’s education and I have absolutely no doubt there will also be far-reaching benefits from having a like-minded landlord that shares our commitment to invest in the future and lead by example in the education of young people.”