J H Badley, founder of Bedales, moved the school to rural Hampshire in 1900 because the lease on the original school house was expiring so that students could continue to benefit from clean air and a close connection to the landscape.
The 120-acre estate includes playing fields, orchards, woodland, pasture and a nature reserve; the countryside comes right to the heart of the schools.
An eclectic mix of buildings adds to the charm of the setting; they range from the modern, custom-designed classrooms at Dunhurst and Dunannie through to the grade-1 listed Lupton Hall and Memorial Library at Bedales (designed by Ernest Gimson and completed in 1921), and two, contemporary, award-winning buildings - Olivier Theatre (1997) and the Orchard Building (2005). Bedales' stunning new Art & Design Building was completed in 2016 (view photos and film).
The three schools share the following facilities:
- Full-size, floodlit Astroturf (twelve tennis courts in the summer term)
- Sports hall with the floor space to take eight badminton courts and equipped with indoor cricket nets
- Superb modern indoor swimming pool
- Two gymnasiums
- Six hard floodlit netball/tennis courts
- Numerous grass pitches (17 acres of playing fields), incorporating cricket and football pitches.
- The Sam Banks Pavilion - a timber framed barn completed in 2013, and constructed by members of the Bedales community
Bedales has exceptional IT facilities with wireless coverage across the campus and students can have their own laptops configured for use with the school system.