Our beneficiaries

Cranleigh has a long history of giving bursaries to children whose families cannot afford the fees. Below are some of our OCs who benefited from financial assistance write about how Cranleigh helped them. Our first Foundationers only started to leave Cranleigh in 2016 and we look forward to updating this page with even more reflections on the impact of Cranleigh’s support.

Michaela Bell

It is impossible to dispute that my experiences as a student at Cranleigh School formed the most defining period of my life to date. It is no exaggeration that the direction of my life was transformed because I was awarded a Music Scholarship and bursary from the school. To have had that unending support from fellow students, Housemistress, teachers and matrons was a truly special experience. One could not help feeling that your personal wellbeing was being nurtured just as much as your academic accomplishments.

I learnt very quickly that at Cranleigh, the doors were wide open, and every opportunity was available to you. There was more on offer than I had ever been exposed to before. Being able to dip your toe into a plethora of extra activities and utilising the amazing facilities on site meant that I could do so much more than ‘just’ music — I could do anything and everything if I just applied myself.

The bursary and music scholarship I was given was a huge help in terms of easing the financial burden on my family, for which I, and my family, are hugely grateful. Cranleigh’s financial aid allowed my parents see their daughter pursue any avenue of interest that she desired and the ability to try new things without restriction — something I believe every parent wishes for their children.

The newfound confidence and self-belief I gained from Cranleigh absolutely carried me through my university years at Manchester and beyond. In 2012, I began running my own business — something the shy and retiring pre-Cranleigh self would not have dreamed of doing! I felt able to present and promote myself, throw myself into new and unchartered territory and meet new people and make new contacts.

I carry with me an immense sense of pride and gratitude for having had the incredible opportunity to attend Cranleigh School. I consider myself immensely lucky.

If it hadn’t been for Cranleigh, I…

…would not have had the confidence and conviction that I could set up my own business, I would not have met my most dear friends, and my future life experiences would have been all the poorer.


Lucy Cronin

I was offered a warm welcome right from the start of my time at Cranleigh. There were lots of fun opportunities and projects to get involved in – musical and otherwise. I made friends for life and I had fantastic teachers who set me up brilliantly for the next stage of my education.

Despite being awarded academic and music scholarships, my family still couldn’t have afforded to send me to Cranleigh. It was a bursary which made this possible for me. And I am so grateful for that. If someone really wants to go to the school and money is the one thing getting in the way of that then a bursary is such a special gift to that person in allowing them to fulfil their potential.

If it hadn’t been for Cranleigh, I…

…wouldn’t have had the courage to fulfil my ambition to apply to Cambridge and the confidence to embark on a career in music.


Stuart Meaker

I came over from South Africa in 2001 because my mother saw how the politics of the country were going to affect our future and she wanted to give us better opportunities. I had always been good at sport so was awarded an Eric Abbott Award, which was topped up with a bursary.

Bursaries tie-in with Cranleigh’s values. It’s not just about providing a solid education for people who can afford one. Bursaries change people’s lives for the better. The School enables exceptionally talented children to become good examples in later life. Bursaries are what Cranleigh stands for: providing opportunities to improve a child’s own life and those around them now and in the future.

If it hadn’t been for Cranleigh, I…

…wouldn’t have made the friendships I made.


Dominic Murray

Going to Cranleigh set me up to go to university to read music. Studying music wouldn’t have been possible for me without Cranleigh and the teaching I got there.

I had so many inspirational moments at Cranleigh: playing the Fiddler in Fiddler on the Roof was a definite highlight, it was great fun! Looking back, I generally got involved in every single thing the School had to offer – sport, art, music, drama. Some of my best memories are at Cranleigh.

Having financial assistance really helped my family and me a lot – without it, the education I received at Cranleigh would not have been an option. By allowing people from all walks of life to come to Cranleigh, the School is attracting a diverse range of people, which benefits the whole community.

If it hadn’t been for Cranleigh, I…

…think my life would have taken a very different story arc and I might not have pushed my music as much as I did.

Email from Dominic’s parents:

Dear Cranleigh

In 2005 our son Dominic was awarded a music scholarship which also included a bursary. We would like to let other parents know the amazing education Dominic received.

The music department introduced Dominic to a whole range of music to which he was able to join – the band, the choir, and also solo-singing. This then enabled him to travel with the school and go on tour to some amazing countries: all with financial help.

Dominic was introduced to the drama department, which he thoroughly enjoyed and went on to be part of some wonderful music productions: Les Misérables, Sweeney Todd and finally the lead role in Fiddler on the Roof.

We believe as parents Cranleigh gave our son a fantastic all-round education that enabled him to go on to university and gave him great confidence skills in his place of work.

Regards extremely grateful parents

Michael and Gail Murray


Kuziva Ndewere

I probably wouldn’t have developed my sport – rugby and athletics – to the level I did without Cranleigh. My parents were keen for me to move to a better school but I wasn’t. I’d already rejected many schools but when it came to seeing Cranleigh I said yes straight away. I just had a feeling that this was where I was meant to be.

We should support bursaries because they give people from my background – people like me who don’t realise they’re good at something because they haven’t been exposed to it – a chance to succeed. A bursary at Cranleigh changes a child’s life course.

If it hadn’t been for Cranleigh, I…

…wouldn’t have found my love for acting – but it’s so much more than that. I wouldn’t be the man I am today.


Bethany Porter

I cannot comprehend how different my education would have been had I not been awarded a bursary and music scholarship to Cranleigh. Scholarships and bursaries allow children to experience a wonderful teaching environment, vast amount of co-curricular activities and life lessons.

I was able to pursue other musical instruments as well as my first instrument (recorder). Without the financial support of the school, my family would not have been able to afford this tuition and therefore I would never have been able to get to the standard I did; I definitely would not be going to university to study Popular Music and Recording.

If it hadn’t been for Cranleigh, I…

…wouldn’t have had the opportunity to immerse myself in a wide curriculum, which has since given me countless opportunities in life and built me into a well-rounded individual.