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Life with Lower School

Exham House is where you, as First and Second Form students, will take your first exciting steps at Bloxham. For the Lower School boarders, your residential home is at Park Close.

Here is an introduction from Head of Lower School and Exham Housemistress, Mrs Jane Cochran.

Exham House

Exham House is based on the school campus and is in the newly refurbished Day House which gives you somewhere to relax at break times. You will always have company in Exham, whether it's the duty tutor or Sixth Form students doing their DofE volunteering. As a Day House, we are open from 8am until 6pm with lessons and activities running from Monday to Friday. On Saturday morning we offer extra sport sessions run by our coaches. These are for our students who want to raise their skill level even further.

Exham House Captains are Layla Williams and Micah Tumilty.

Park Close

For the Lower School boarders, your residential home is at Park Close. Park Close is your boarding house where you will go home to after supper and where you will be cared for by your Housemistress, Mrs. Heathcote, and her team. Park Close is an idyllic home situated a short walk off the main campus and set in its own gardens and grounds. The girls' bedrooms occupying the top floor and the boys' the middle. There is an excellent and well equipped indoor social space, with the outside space including a cricket pitch, tennis courts and astro cricket nets.

Boarding is very flexible- it can be all week or just a couple of nights a week and short-notice stays can be accommodated as long as there is space in the House. Evenings are busy for Lower School Boarders, with a well-run programme of events and activities, including theatre trips, film nights, sports and swimming, bowling nights, a table tennis and climbing club and other seasonal excursions.

Head of Lower School

Jane Cochran joined Bloxham in 2016 as a Language Teacher, prior to that as Head of Modern Foreign Languages at a school in West Oxfordshire. Mrs Cochran lives in Banbury with her family and her daughter Ella attends Bloxham School. At Bloxham, Mrs Cochran began her Lower School journey as a tutor swiftly becoming the Head of Lower School in 2018. She believes that all the experiences gained in Lower School help to build secure foundations in preparation for Senior School.

Assistant Head of Lower School

Alex Redpath joined Bloxham in 2015, he is the Director of Music, conductor of the school Orchestra, Brass Ensemble and Concert Band. He is happiest when making pizza with his children. He works very closely with Mrs Cochran to keep Exham running smoothly.

Park Close Housemistress

Sophie Heathcote joined Bloxham in 2004 as a sports coach, and since then has taken successful sports tours to Northern Europe, Paris and South Africa. In 2013, Sophie became Lower School’s Sports Coordinator before extending her reach in Exham to become a tutor and then Assistant Housemistress of Park Close in 2015. Sophie takes responsibility for all boarding and pastoral care of the Exham House boarders as well as continuing her support to the PE Department in hockey, rounders, tennis and netball. Prior to Bloxham, Sophie spent many years as an A&E nurse before taking a break to raise a family. She has three children; Alice, Harry and Louisa, who are all Old Bloxhamists. She especially enjoys supporting the broader curriculum at Bloxham, leading outward-bound activities such as the annual French Alps Trip and First and Second Form camps, as well as supporting DofE. Sophie lives at Park Close with her husband, Guy Heathcote, with her children visiting often! 

Tutors

On joining Bloxham, each student is assigned a tutor. Tutors mentor and guide their tutees, monitoring and supporting their academic, spiritual, social, and physical development. They are in regular touch with a student’s home, to share with parents and guardians how the student is developing, passing on information and sharing ideas about how each individual can be helped to mature and grow.