Our history

A shared vision…

In 1950, a group of parents wanted to find an alternative to schools in the area, believing that every child deserved access to the best education possible. Out of this shared vision, Bridgewater School was born.

A charitable foundation, the school took great care to ensure that all received income was spent wholly on maintaining the school and the education of its pupils. An ethos still in place today.

Bridgewater School Drywood Hall 1855 datestone

Foundations for success

Since opening our doors to just 55 pupils seventy years ago, our story has been one of great success and it is the school’s original and unchanging standards of endeavour, personal discipline and excellence which have enabled the school to flourish in such an outstanding way.

To this day, the family ethos which was at the heart of the school’s foundation remains the same and Bridgewater School now provides independent education to boys and girls across the whole schooling age range in an inspirational setting that is inclusive, stimulating and totally focused on achieving every pupil’s individual goals.

Bridgewater School History Timeline

Through the years

  • 1950 – Bridgewater School opens to 55 boys. The Earl of Ellesmere grants permission for the school to use the name ‘Bridgewater’ and part of his family crest for the logo
  • 1952 – The school makes its home at Drywood Hall, formerly part of the Duke of Bridgewater’s Estate. The half-timber style manor house, once home to Jesse Wallwork (Chairman of Bridgewater Estates), was built in 1855 and sits amid four acres of woodland. (See Wallwork History for more information.)
  • 1968 – The first girls are admitted to the Prep and Senior schools, transforming Bridgewater into the co-educational independent school that we know today
  • 1970 – In addition to the new Science Blocks added during the 1950s and 60s, the Main Hall is now opened and student numbers increase further still to 235
  • 1990 – Opening of the new Prep Building by Sir James Anderton, Chief Constable of Greater Manchester
  • 1996 – New Senior School Building added, providing laboratories and dedicated Art, Drama and IT spaces
  • 2006 – Grand Opening of the new Sports Hall Complex, with purpose built Drama Studio, Music Rooms and Dining Hall
  • 2015 – Addition of a new all-weather 3G sports pitch, outdoor play area and gym equipment
  • 2020 – Seventy years on and 480 pupils are now benefitting from a Bridgewater education

View our Development Programme

A first-hand account from a founding Bridgewater pupil

Gallery

The freedom to be yourself is the greatest freedom of all


Bridgewater School EYFS and Prep Open Morning March 2022

EYFS and Prep Open Morning 2022

When it comes to finding the perfect learning environment for your child, the team here at Bridgewater School believe that the best way to see why children are so happy

Read more

Memories of a Bridgewater Old Boy

A ghost, a ‘dip’ in the pond and a merry dance… As one of the 50 pioneering, founding Bridgewater Old Boys, and probably the oldest alumni, the school’s 70th anniversary

Read more

Christmas Gifting Appeal 2021

Every child deserves to have a special Christmas. Yet a third of young people are going to bed without a hot dinner, living with no central heating and don’t have

Read more

Bridgewater Alevel Art students experience Van Gogh Alive

Van Gogh Alive for Art students

This term our A-level Art students had the opportunity to journey through Van Gogh Alive, the world famous immersive exhibition. This innovative and inspiring experience, which transforms every surface into a

Read more