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The Cedars School

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The Cedars School
Coombe Road, Lloyd Park

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Coordinates51°21′49″N 00°04′17″W / 51.36361°N 0.07139°W / 51.36361; -0.07139Coordinates: 51°21′49″N 00°04′17″W / 51.36361°N 0.07139°W / 51.36361; -0.07139
TypeIndependent school
MottoLatin: In Gaudio Serviamus
(May We Serve Joyfully)
Religious affiliation(s)Roman Catholic
EstablishedSeptember 2013 (2013-09)
FounderPACT Educational Trust
Local authorityCroydon London Borough Council
OversightPACT Educational Trust
Department for Education URN139811 Tables
HeadmasterRobert Teague[1]
Age range11–18
Enrolment193 (2019)[2]
Colour(s)Navy and Gold         
AccreditationIndependent Schools Association[3]
Listed Building – Grade II
Official name: Coombe House (St Margaret's School)
Designated29 January 1951
Reference no.1188548

The Cedars School is an 11–18 boys, Roman Catholic, independent school and sixth form in Lloyd Park, Croydon, Greater London, England. It was established in September 2013 by the PACT Educational Trust, in a Grade II listed building dating back to the 18th century. It is the first senior school in the country to be based on the ethos of Opus Dei and is located in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Southwark.[4]


Geoffrey Harris House in 2005, now occupied by the school.
Geoffrey Harris House in 2005, now occupied by the school.

The Cedars School was established in September 2013 as a Roman Catholic, independent school for boys by the PACT Educational Trust, a parent-led charity group, with an initial intake of 46 and fees of £3,900 a term. The trust had initially intended to open the school as a free school but was put off due to the "very restrictive" admissions policy that would have stopped them from reserving places for Catholics. It is the first senior school in the country to be based on the ethos of Opus Dei, which does not directly run the school but supported its opening and has links with the trust.[5][6]

The school opened in a Grade II listed building that was acquired by the trust, dates back to 1761 and was known as the Coombe House. Having gone through several owners and let to various tenants in the 1830s, it was owned by Frank Lloyd in the 1890s, a newspaper magnate and son of Edward Lloyd (owned the house before him), and lived there for 35 years until his death in 1927. The neighbouring Lloyd Park was created from land bequeathed by Lloyd and is named after him. By 1937, it became a nursing home for army officers and used as St Margaret's School for disabled children between 1946–1985. Two extensions were added during the 1950s, and the building was latterly owned by an NHS trust as Geoffrey Harris House, a residential care home for those with mental health and learning difficulties.[7][8]

On 22 March 2017, the Real Madrid Foundation opened its first football school in the United Kingdom in partnership with the school; Football for Unity, a non-profit pro-football organisation; and the Kinetic Foundation, a local sports charity that was set up following the 2011 England riots. The Foundation already runs similar schools in other countries and said, "The aim of the project is to support children and young people by offering them activities to develop their skills, both in sports and relational and social integration." Officially opened by former player Emilio Butragueño, it involves free football sessions at the school that are led by coaches trained by Real Madrid.[9][10][11][12]


  1. ^ "Staff". The Cedars School. Retrieved 12 October 2019.
  2. ^ a b "The Cedars School". Get information about schools. GOV.UK. Retrieved 12 October 2019.
  3. ^ "The Cedars School". Independent Schools Association. Retrieved 12 October 2019.
  4. ^ "The Cedars School". Catholic Independent Schools' Conference. Retrieved 12 October 2019.
  5. ^ "Opus Dei to open first school in London". Evening Standard. 11 February 2013. Retrieved 12 October 2019.
  6. ^ "Fundamentalist Catholic group moves into education". National Secular Society. 12 February 2013. Retrieved 12 October 2019.
  7. ^ "About the School". The Cedars School. Retrieved 13 October 2019.
  8. ^ Birch, Patricia (2007). "Geoffrey Harris House". London Gardens Online. London Parks and Gardens Trust. Archived from the original on 13 October 2019. Retrieved 13 October 2019.
  9. ^ Matthews, Tom (14 March 2017). "Real Madrid are opening their first UK soccer school - in Croydon". Croydon Advertiser. Retrieved 12 October 2019.
  10. ^ "Real Madrid opens first British football school in Croydon". ITV News. 22 March 2017. Retrieved 12 October 2019.
  11. ^ "The Real Madrid Foundation presents the first socio-sporting school to open in the UK". Real Madrid CF. 22 March 2017. Retrieved 12 October 2019.
  12. ^ Anglesey, Anders (23 March 2017). "Real Madrid open soccer school near Lloyd Park in Croydon". Wandsworth Times. Retrieved 12 October 2019.
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The Cedars School
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