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Outstanding Schools Group Expands Presence in South West with Latest Acquisition ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

Forfar Education, known for supporting schools to become outstanding centres of excellence, today announces the acquisition of Springmead School and Nursery in the picturesque village of Beckington, just a few miles from Frome. Springmead joins Forfar’s impressive portfolio of independent preparatory schools across the UK, stretching from Bournemouth to Sunderland.

The specialist schools group, established in 2016 by former army officer John Forsyth, has a strong track record of owning, building and managing exceptional schools across the globe. Forfar’s leadership team brings more than 80 years of experience in the education sector to Springmead, as it begins to map out the future for this much-loved prep school, well known for its family atmosphere and inviting, idyllic location.

Forfar CEO John Forsyth said the Group’s most recent acquisition was not only strategic in terms of location –increasing the group’s presence in the South West alongside its school in Bournemouth - but also in terms of its similarities with the existing schools in the Group.

John said: “We’re delighted to welcome Springmead to our growing family of excellent prep schools. The school appealed to us not only for its impeccable reputation locally for educating and supporting the development of its children to the very highest of standards, but also for its beautiful setting, strong team of inspirational teachers and commitment to delivering a holistic learning experience, inside and outside the classroom.

“We look forward to investing in Springmead’s facilities and its future with a strategic plan of refurbishments and curriculum expansions over the coming years. The school is set to benefit from the varied and award-winning experience of Forfar’s industry-leading team of educators as it becomes the latest addition to our ambitious and dynamic Group.”

In 2022, Springmead was shortlisted for the National ISA Award for Excellence and Innovation in Early Years, in 2020 it was shortlisted for the National ISA Award for Excellence in Pupil Personal Development, in 2019 it was shortlisted for the ISA Early Years Award for Excellence and Innovation in Provision and in 2018 the school won the National ISA Award for Excellence in Extra-Curricular Activities. 

John added: “Forfar will maintain the small family ethos that Springmead and Forfar share and with Forfar’s educational experience and financial investment, Springmead will be the ‘family’ preparatory school of choice in the region.

“Our aim as a group, made up of experts in education from across the world and now rooted in all corners of the UK, is to create and nurture inspiring schools that teach self-belief, resilience and deliver academic excellence in a happy environment. Springmead offers the perfect foundations – in terms of size, history, ethos and culture – for us to develop the school and propel it to stand amongst some of the top prep schools in the country.”

Headmistress at Springmead, Sally Cox, said: “We’re thrilled to have joined Forfar and to now be part of a very impressive selection of excellent prep schools, sharing learning, ideas, inspiration and energy with the best Early Years and prep school experts in the country. Springmead has a strong history of preparing children for all of the challenges and successes life may hold and we are proud to have an excellent track record of academic and sporting results along with decades of experience in fulfilling our pupils with a strong sense of self-worth and a life-long love of learning.

“We look forward to getting to know the other schools in the Group and enhancing our reputation as the very best prep school in our region.”

Springmead, which has just been awarded a double excellent result in its latest ISI inspection (Feb 2023), is also home to an outstanding nursery setting offering provision for children from the term before their third birthday. A large proportion of the nursery children, who benefit from specialist teachers for music and French, move into the main school each year, with strong established links between the nursery and reception class to ensure that the transition is calm and happy.