Bursaries | Scholarships


Bursaries help ensure that pupils are drawn from diverse backgrounds; many of our students are from families whose income is below the national average. Currently, one in five pupils receives a Bursary-assisted place. This is made possible by our Open Door Bursary Fund, which aims to maintain the ethos of Lord Leverhulme who, when re-endowing the School in 1915, wanted to offer an education for all, regardless of financial circumstances.

The School strives to make sure bursary recipients are supported to make the very best of their educational journey at Bolton School. Mrs Jane Mees, the School’s Partnership, Outreach and Liaison Coordinator, works closely with pupils and their families to ensure each bursary recipient has the support and encouragement they need to thrive throughout their time at the School.

Mrs Mees explains more about her role in this short video:

The School offers fee assistance to those parents whose income is such that they would not otherwise be able to pay the full fees. The awards are based on the child's performance in our Entrance Examination and the degree of assistance required. The latter is based on an annual declaration of income and assets. A bursary will usually continue until the end of Year 11 and there is the possibility it will continue into the Sixth Form. The amount to which you are entitled is re-assessed annually.

Parents whose income is less than circa £20,000 may be offered full remission of fees. Those parents whose income exceeds circa £80,000 will not qualify for assistance.

If you wish to be considered for a bursary, please complete the Application Form which will be sent out with the invitation to sit our Entrance Examination. That form will require an estimate of your income for the year ending 5 April. After submission of the form, there will be a parental interview with the School's Clerk & Treasurer for those who are being considered for bursary assistance.

If your child is successful in the Entrance Exam in January they will be offered a place, in writing. That offer will inform you of the provisional level of Bursary Award (if you qualify on financial grounds) in terms of your contribution towards fees. You should then follow the instructions relating to your acceptance of that place.

In May you will be asked to complete a Final Declaration of Income form. On this you will be asked to enter details of your actual income to 5 April . With this Declaration you will be asked to provide documentation to corroborate your income for the previous fiscal year. We will inform you of the amount of your own contribution towards fees, in writing, during the course of the school summer holiday.

The amount of your award will be re-assessed annually. We may ask you to pay a greater proportion of the fees if your income should rise, however there is no obligation on the School's part to increase the percentage should your income fall. Each year you will be asked to complete a new Declaration of Income form and to provide details of your income for the previous fiscal year. You will be provided with explanatory notes in order to help you to complete both the Provisional and Final Declaration forms. Alternatively you may telephone the Bursary Officer, Mrs Saunders, on 01204 840201 ext 329, or contact her by email [email protected].

Bursary support is also available to students who apply to join the Boys' or Girls' Division Sixth Form. We award bursaries after consideration of family income and a student's academic merit.  In order to help us ascertain the academic potential of students applying for a bursary we will require them to sit a cognitive test administered by the School.

I am eternally grateful for your support over the past few years, my time here has been absolutely amazing and I have had the opportunity to experience things I wouldn't have been able to elsewhere.

I am now working towards achieving my offer to study Politics, Philosophy, and Economics at King’s College London.

I feel truly privileged to have been able to spend the past two years with such lovely friends and excellent teachers, whilst getting a top class education. I sincerely hope to keep in contact as an “Old Girl” and I will miss the school, the traditions and the welcoming atmosphere immensely. I will be forever grateful for your support.

My father is a doctor working in the NHS, and the only earner in my family. He initially struggled to support the expenses of my education, so the assistance provided by the school in the form of a 45% bursary helped ensure that I was able to continue at the school through to Sixth Form.

Oscar’s bursary is life changing for him. It is an opportunity for a brilliant education but also for ‘all the other stuff’ that Bolton do for their boys with clubs, trips, team-building and helping to develop tomorrow’s adults really well. During lockdown, school has excelled.

Our sons have been able to fulfil the drive and need they have within them at Bolton School. In our opinion, no other school would have been able to allow them to achieve this. Indeed we returned from Spain after three months because of this. Whichever paths they take, it is down to the bursary scheme which has allowed them to attend Bolton School.

The friendly atmosphere of Bolton School has enabled my academic and social progression. I have had the room to grow and develop crucial skills such as communication, leadership and teamwork throughout my time here. As I now look to my next steps in life at University, I am confident that my academic abilities and social skills which I have developed whilst at Bolton School will help me go far in life. Without the financial aid from the school, this would not have been possible for me and many others in similar positions. I am very grateful for my experiences I have had as a Bolton School pupil.

The small class sizes have been beneficial in maximising the support from my teachers and increasing my passion for my subjects. I’ve been able to help with running clubs for younger pupils and have been a peer mentor for a year. The arts and science evening lectures which I regularly attend have broadened my knowledge base and allowed me to gain an insight into a variety of subjects which I would not have thought to explore.

Three years ago I was undereducated, underachieving and underestimated. The bursary at Bolton School meant that I had a chance at changing my life. It offered me new blueprints for the future, and I saw endless possibilities. Whatever my results are, they are nothing compared to the development I know I have had as a person.

We will be eternally grateful for the help that the bursary scheme offers to both our boys. Neither of them take this help for granted and both always try to honour this by achieving the best they can.


A number of Scholarships are available to pupils entering either the Girls’ or Boys’ Division in Year 7. These generous Scholarships are not means-tested and are awarded to those pupils who, we believe, will make a strong contribution to the academic and wider life of the School.

The Scholarships are offered at the discretion of the Head of Girls' Division or Head of Boys' Division following the Bolton School Entrance Examination and Interview.

Further information and application forms to sit our Entrance Examination are available from Helen Atkinson (Girls’ Division: [email protected]) or Angela Fenton (Boys’ Division: [email protected]) on 01204 840201.