Dale House

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Dale House was the original ‘School House’ and the first boarding house at the school. The House was renamed after Nobel Laureate and Old Leysian, Sir Henry Hallett Dale, who was a boarder here between 1891-94.

Girls’ Boarding House, 13-18

59 girls - 40 Boarders, 19 Home Boarders

Housemistress: Clare Battison (Art)

Assistant Housemistress: Alison Lainchbury (Library)

Matron: Noreen Cox

House Team: Claire Leigh (Head of English), Georgina Jefferies (Geography), Cathy Earl (Maths)


This is a relaxed and happy house. The girls are very sociable and take pride in creating a wonderful house spirit. Warmth and friendliness springs to mind, alongside the noise, chatter and singing. Dale takes pride in the different talents of its residents and there are numerous academic, art, music and sports scholars within the walls. The girls participate fully in the life of the school. We nurture and develop the all-round enthusiastic, high spirited girl in conjunction with the quiet, scholarly, gentle and placid young lady. Altogether they are a close-knit set of girls.

Dale is like a second home. In Year 9 all the boarders are in one dorm together which encourages the girls to get to know everyone in their year. The 10s are in triple rooms and the 11s and L6 work and live together in pairs. The U6 have the privilege of a single study bedroom.

When the new Year 9s join in September they are matched up with a ‘Big Sister’, a girl in the Sixth Form who is there to help them settle in and act as a mentor during their time at the house. This is a partnership and bond that is very special, based on mutual respect, trust and openness. They choose each other because they have connected, or have similar interests, family connections or nationalities. The aim is to provide an opportunity for the development and growth of the new Year 9s socially, morally and emotionally. To allow the girls to gain a sense of belonging and feel welcomed within a large boarding house and above all, raise self-esteem.

Being located in the centre of the school is ideal, as the Dale House common room is a popular place to socialise and unwind at break time, after supper or at the end of the school day. The member of staff on duty is always in the foyer for extra help with prep or just for a cup of tea and a chat. Another unique aspect of Dale is the Birthday Chair, which is a relatively new but well-loved tradition; each girl receives a card, balloon and an early morning rendition of ‘Happy Birthday’ during registration. Each Christmas, we also have in-house activities followed by our house Christmas party, which is always a great way to end the Autumn Term. Although the school day can be busy and exhausting, having such a friendly and supportive boarding house is an aspect of The Leys which all pupils are grateful for.

Head of House


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01223 508900

The Leys School

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