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Coordinates: 51°23′40″N 0°25′07″E / 51.39444°N 0.41861°E / 51.39444; 0.41861

Cobham Hall
Established 1962
Type Independent day and boarding school
Headmistress Sandra Coates-Smith
Location Gravesend
DA12 3BL
Local authority Kent
Students 180[2017]
Gender Girls
Ages 11–18
Affiliations GSA
Round Square

Cobham Hall is an independent day and boarding school for girls in Cobham, Kent. The school is housed in a Tudor era manor, which is now Grade I listed. It is a Round Square school[1] and a member of the Girls' Schools Association. School was previewed in the movie , Wild Child, when it was called Abbey Mount

Building history

The garden front in 2009

There has been a manor house on the site since the 12th century. The current building consists of a pair of Tudor wings built for The 10th Baron Cobham in the 16th century and a later classical central block, the 'Cross Wing', remodelled in 1661–63 by Peter Mills of London for The 3rd Duke of Richmond.[2] The attic storey was extended and other alterations made for The 3rd Earl of Darnley by Sir William Chambers, ca 1767–70[3] A kitchen court was added to the rear in 1771–73. The most notable feature of the interior is the two-storey Gilt Hall, designed and installed by George Shakespear, master carpenter and architect, of London, who made extensive interior alterations, 1770–81.[4] The organ was built by John Snetzler in 1778-9.[5]

The fourth earl, who inherited in 1781, employed James Wyatt extensively, for interiors that included the Picture Gallery and the Dining Room, and for stables and a Gothic dairy.[6] The Library was fitted up by George Stanley Repton in 1817–20,[7] and with his brother, John Adey Repton, in Jacobethan style, including the ceiling for "Queen Elizabeth's Room" (1817).[8] Their father, Humphry Repton, was hired to design a landscape plan for the estate and completed one of his famous 'Red Books' for Cobham in 1790. Cobham Hall remained the family home of the Earls of Darnley until 1957 and is now home to the school. It is open to the public on a limited number of days each year. [1]

Cobham Hall circa 1880.

The building has also been used as a film set. A scene in Agent Cody Banks 2 in which Frankie Muniz fights Keith Allen in a room full of priceless treasures was filmed in the Gilt Hall. Scenes from an adaption of Bleak House were also filmed outside the building, and it was also used in a few scenes in the comedy sketch show Tittybangbang.

The Hall is used as the school 'Abbey Mount' in the 2008 film Wild Child starring Emma Roberts and as the Foundling Hospital in the CBBC adaptation of Hetty Feather.


Cobham Hall was founded as an international boarding school for girls aged between eleven and eighteen in 1962. The school now welcomes both day girls and boarding students. The school has a large contingent of international students, with approximately 25 nationalities represented. Just over 50% are local British. The school aims to encourage girls to challenge themselves, and the motto is 'There is more in you than you think'.[9]


From September 2018, Sixth Form pupils will be studying A Levels. The A Levels will be the academic portion or a broad curriculum, which also encompasses the Extended Project Qualification, PSHE, Theory of Knowledge, The Duke or Edinburgh's Award or Service, and Sport. Girls in Middle School (up to Year 11) follow the GCSE curriculum.[10]


Over half of the student population are boarders. There are three boarding houses: Main Hall, Bligh House and Brooke House.[11]

Notable alumnae


  1. ^ Round Square Archived 26 March 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  2. ^ Howard Colvin, "Peter Mills and Cobham Hall" in Colvin and John Harris, The Country Seat1970.
  3. ^ Colvin, A Biographical Dictionary of British Architects, 1600–1840 3rd ed. 1995, s.v. "Chambers, Sir William".
  4. ^ John Cornforth, in Country Life, 3–10 March 1983, citing documents in Kent Archives Office, noted in Colvin 1995, s.v. "Shakespear, George".
  5. ^ S. Bicknell, The History of the English Organ, 1999.
  6. ^ Colvin 1995, s.v. "Wyatt, James".
  7. ^ John Preston Neale, Views of Seats, vi, 1821, noted in Colvin 1995, s,v. "Repton, George Stanley".
  8. ^ Colvin 1995, s.v. "Repton, John Adey".
  9. ^ International Students Archived 26 March 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  10. ^ Academic Archived 5 March 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  11. ^ Boarding Houses Archived 18 April 2012 at the Wayback Machine.

External links

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