Boarding FAQs

A boarder's typical timetable


Breakfast is served for boarders in the medieval College Hall: originally the dining room of the Abbot of Westminster.


Afternoon tea for boarders and day pupils. Between tea and supper, Lower School Activities and rehearsals take place, and societies often meet for after-school lectures.


Supper in College Hall is served for boarders and also for day pupils who have stayed on after School for an evening activity.


For boarders, study time or prep commences in their houses or the Library. It is a structured session of independent learning, every evening, with the support of housemasters and tutors.


Prep ends, and boarders meet to play pool or table tennis, or continue their academic work. A programme of activities is arranged most evenings in the School’s Music Centre and Sports Centre.


Pupils return to their Houses unless they have permission to attend a family celebration or to go, with a group organised by a member of staff, to a play or concert. Bed times vary according to the age of the pupils.

General Boarding FAQs

  • Can I come on a tour of a boarding house?

    For 13+ entry: Yes, we are happy to arrange a tour led by the housemaster. There are regular tours of the boarding houses please email to book. Please note, it is not always possible to arrange a boarding house tour on the same day as a general tour of the School.

    For 16+ entry: Prospective pupils and parents can choose to visit a boarding house as part of their tour of the school during a Sixth Form Open Day.

  • Can I try boarding?

    There is an opportunity for boys who are offered a place at 13+ entry to attend a boarder taster evening while in Year 7; boys are given tours of the houses by current boarders and spend a night at the School. Offer holders will be contacted by the Admissions Team with details of upcoming taster evenings.  This event is not open to those applying for a day place and is booked on a first come first served basis.


  • Do I have to decide whether or not to apply for a boarding place at the time of registration?

    For 13+ applicants, the answer is no. The final decision between day and boarding is required by the end of February of Year 8. to can be delayed until a boy is in his final year at preparatory school. It is also possible for a boy to switch to boarding having started at Westminster as a day boy.

    16+ (Sixth Form) applicants must notify us whether they wish to apply for a day place or boarding place when registering for entry.

  • Can I express a preference for a particular boarding house?

    Yes, we will always aim to respect any preferences indicated. We cannot, however, guarantee that a candidate will be allocated the house requested.

  • Can I board during the school holidays?

    Westminster does not offer boarding during the school holidays.

  • Can I stay at School at weekends?

    All boarders in the Lower School, up to the age of 16, go home every weekend. Some Sixth Form boarders stay at School at weekends, but the School is typically quiet on Saturday nights.

  • Can I board at Westminster if my parents live abroad?

    Westminster is not a suitable boarding school for pupils below the age of 16 whose parents live overseas. We do welcome overseas boarders in the Sixth Form, but they must have guardians with whom they can stay at ‘Exeat Weekends’ or when they are unwell.

Find out when your child is able to join the School using the personalised age checker and timeline.

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