Arts Educational Schools

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Arts Educational Schools, or ArtsEd, is an independent performing arts school based in Chiswick in the London Borough of Hounslow.

Arts Educational Schools, London
ALWF Theatre - main image.jpg
Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation Theatre
Cone Ripman House
14 Bath Road
Turnham Green Park

, ,
W4 1LY

Established1939; 84 years ago (1939)
FounderGrace Cone and Olive Ripman
Local authorityHounslow
SpecialistPerforming arts
Department for Education URN102551 Tables
PresidentAndrew Lloyd Webber
PrincipalDr. Julie Spencer


ArtsEd provides specialist vocational training at secondary, further and higher education level in musical theatre and acting for film and television. The school also offers part-time and holiday courses in the performing arts.

ArtsEd is one of twenty-one specialist performing arts schools approved to offer government-funded Dance and Drama Awards, a scheme established to subsidise the cost of professional dance and drama training for the most talented students at leading institutions.[1][2] It is a member of the Federation of Drama Schools.[3]



ArtsEd was founded in 1939. It was formed as a result of a merger between the Cone School of Dancing founded in 1919 by Grace Cone, and the Ripman School founded in 1922 by Olive Ripman. Both Cone and Ripman offered curricula combining a general academic education with training in the arts, in preparation for professional careers connected with the theatre. The two schools were amalgamated in 1939 to form the Cone-Ripman School, the predecessor of today's ArtsEd.[4]

The school was first based at Stratford Place in London,[5] but following the outbreak of World War II, relocated to Tring, Hertfordshire, sharing premises with Rothschild Bank at Tring Park.

In 1941, the school reopened at Stratford Place, while the second school continued to operate in Tring. In 1947, both schools were renamed the Arts Educational Schools.[4] The London school was later based at Hyde Park Corner (144 Piccadilly),[6] and later still at Golden Lane House in the Barbican. In 1986 the school purchased the former buildings of Chiswick Polytechnic.[4]

In the 2000s the two schools became independent of each other, and the Tring school has been renamed Tring Park School for the Performing Arts.[7] Today, Arts Educational Schools London is a co–educational Independent Day School and Sixth Form for pupils aged 11–18, and a professional conservatoire specialising in acting and musical theatre, as well as a range of part-time courses.[citation needed]

For many years, the president of the school was prima ballerina assoluta Dame Alicia Markova; Dame Beryl Grey became Director in the 1960s. Dame Alicia was succeeded in 2007 by Andrew Lloyd Webber.[4]

Iain Reid was dean of the schools from 1999 until his retirement in December 2006. He was succeeded by John Baraldi, former chief executive of Riverside Studios, and former director of the East 15 Acting School; Baraldi left the school in 2009, and was succeeded by Jane Harrison. In 2017, Chris Hocking assumed the role of principal; he resigned in 2021 and was succeeded by Dr. Julie Spencer as interim principal.[8]

In 2013 ArtsEd was awarded a grant by the Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation to fund a refurbishment project. The money was spent on the main theatre, costume storage, the School of Film and Television and the school's access facilities.[9]

Chiswick School of ArtEdit

The arts and crafts architect Maurice Bingham Adams designed the Chiswick School of Art as part of the Bedford Park Garden Suburb's community focus on the site on Bath Road in 1881. It was destroyed by a V-1 flying bomb in 1944.[10] The school was meant to provide the estate with a feeling of community. It taught classes such as "Freehand drawing in all its branches, practical Geometry and perspective, pottery and tile painting, design for decorative purposes – as in Wall-papers, Furniture, Metalwork, Stained Glass".[11] The school was depicted by Thomas Erat Harrison in an 1882 book Bedford Park, celebrating the then-fashionable garden suburb.[12]


Day School and Sixth FormEdit

The Day School and Sixth Form cater to students aged 11 to 18. Students are required to study mainstream subjects, in preparation for the GCSE and A-Levels, alongside their performing arts pursuits.[13] Besides the A-Levels pathway, Sixth Form students have an option to complete a BTEC Extended Diploma in a performing arts discipline.[14]

In 2015 the school was rated "Outstanding" by Ofsted.[15] In 2019 it ranked second in the borough for percentage of pupils passing five or more GCSEs at A*-C.[16]


The school had been accredited by Drama UK (organisation dissolved in 2016). It offers Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education recognised qualifications validated by the City University London or Trinity College, London.[17] A non-degree foundation course is offered for students who do not meet the academic requirements for admission into the bachelor's degree programmes.[18]

Former pupilsEdit

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Grants and bursaries for adult learners". Archived from the original on 4 February 2009. Retrieved 6 February 2009.
  2. ^ Dance and Drama 10023485 Archived 16 July 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ Granger, Rachel. "Rapid Scoping Study on Leicester Drama School" (PDF). De Montfort University Leicester. Retrieved 7 September 2019.
  4. ^ a b c d "History". Retrieved 20 August 2021.
  5. ^ "Survey of London: 6. Stratford Place" (PDF). Bartlett School of Architecture, University College London. p. 31. Retrieved 20 August 2021.
  6. ^ Cove, Grace (6 April 1962). "The Arts Educational Schools Limited" (PDF). The London Gazette. Retrieved 11 May 2022.
  7. ^ "Tring Park School for the Performing Arts". Tring Park School for the Performing Arts. Archived from the original on 15 April 2011. Retrieved 20 August 2021.
  8. ^ "Arts Ed Principal Resigns After Safeguarding Report Published". Chiswick W4. 24 October 2021. Retrieved 24 October 2021.
  9. ^ "Lloyd Webber donates £3.5million to 'Dorothy' performing arts school". Evening Standard. 12 April 2012. Retrieved 20 August 2021.
  10. ^ "Chiswick School of Art". Artist Biographies. Retrieved 2 August 2021.
  11. ^ "1881 – Chiswick School of Art, Bedford Park, London". Archiseek. 26 August 2009. Retrieved 2 August 2021.
  12. ^ Dollman, John Charles; Hargitt, Edward; Harrison, Thomas Erat; Jackson, F. Hamilton; Nash, Joseph, Jr.; Paget, H. M.; Rooke, Thomas; Trautschold, Manfred; Brooks, Vincent; Carr, Jonathan T.; Berry, Berry F. (1882). Bedford Park. Harrison and Sons. OCLC 193146366.
  13. ^ "Day School Curriculum".
  14. ^ "ArtsEd London Sixth Form — Curriculum Policy" (PDF).
  15. ^ Ofsted Communications Team (14 December 2017). "Find an inspection report and registered childcare". Archived from the original on 25 June 2016. Retrieved 14 June 2016.
  16. ^ "School league tables in London: Find out how your school did for GCSE and A-Level results". Evening Standard. 7 February 2020.
  17. ^ Higher Education Review (Alternative Providers) of The Arts Educational Schools. Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education. October 2017.
  18. ^ "Courses: Foundation".
  19. ^ "Kai Alexander". Tresa Magazine. 1 June 2020. Retrieved 30 May 2022.
  20. ^ a b c d e f "The Arts Educational performing arts schools". The Chiswick Calendar. Retrieved 30 May 2022.
  21. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l "Alumni". Arts Educational Schools London. 2022. Retrieved 30 May 2022.
  22. ^ Hanrahan, Laura (18 February 2021). "Everything You Need To Know About 'Bridgerton' Season 2 Star Simone Ashley". Cosmopolitan. Retrieved 18 February 2021.
  23. ^ Cassell, Paul (3 June 2009). "Samantha Barks in the popular musical Cabaret". GetReading. Retrieved 8 December 2012.
  24. ^ King, Gordon. "Darcey Bussell". Retrieved 26 October 2019.
  25. ^ Gordon, Bryony (21 October 2008). "Darcey Bussell: Dance? Not for my daughters". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 26 October 2019.
  26. ^ "Gary Carr" (PDF). London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art. Archived from the original (PDF) on 17 July 2011. Retrieved 1 July 2009.
  27. ^ "Food: Laura Haddock and Eleanor Wylde". OK!. 29 January 2008. Archived from the original on 23 February 2012. Retrieved 13 August 2009.
  28. ^ "Madeleine Mantock". Retrieved 10 November 2017.
  29. ^ McKenna, Megan (2018). Mouthy. John Blake. ISBN 978-1786068958.
  30. ^ Pickstock, Heather (15 March 2013). "Bristol actress Tuppence Middleton stars in Hitchcock TV thriller ..." Bristol Post. Archived from the original on 31 March 2014. Retrieved 31 March 2014.
  31. ^ ArtsEd [@ArtsEdLondon] (22 May 2018). "Our brilliant Saturday Skills #Alumna Mimi Slinger, will now be appearing as a regular character, Leanna Cavanagh in @emmerdale. Congratulations Mimi!" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  32. ^ "Charles Spencer on Instagram: "My son, Louis, graduated today from @artsedlondon with a First-class degree. He was selected as his year's valedictorian, and it was an absolutely beautiful speech - perfectly-delivered, touchingly generous, hugely grateful, and including references to so many of his 80 classmates. A final farewell hug to his brilliant principal here, and then on to his career. I couldn't be prouder of him - so much hard work, to add to a very rare gift. Congratulations, Louis!"". Instagram. Retrieved 20 September 2022.
  33. ^ Pelley, Rich (20 July 2020). "Timmy Mallett and Michaela Strachan: how we made Wide Awake Club". The Guardian. Retrieved 22 July 2020.
  34. ^ Gray, Chris (18 July 2013). "Abingdon's Oliver Tompsett on his star role in We Will Rock You". Oxford Mail. Retrieved 30 May 2022.

External linksEdit

Coordinates: 51°29′46″N 0°15′09″W / 51.49611°N 0.25250°W / 51.49611; -0.25250