Arts and Crafts movement

Geoffrey Lupton Constructing the Library  Edward Barnsley

With an exceptional retrospective exhibition currently in the Bedales Gallery, it seemed an opportune moment to give an assembly on the Arts and Crafts movement and the intertwining of its heyday and the early history of Bedales School. The alumni list of Old Bedalians from the early years of the school is littered with the children of influential craftsmen and makers of the movement, and others who went on to become makers after starting their making journeys in the Bedales workshop.

Amongst these pioneers and advocates of the movement were Geoffrey Lupton and Edward Barnsley, both of whom were educated at the school. Ernest Gimson, one of the most distinguished and well respected designers of the period, was commissioned to draw up plans for the buildings of the school in 1906 of which the Hall and the Library were constructed. The Lupton Hall was constructed (and financed) almost entirely by Geoffrey Lupton and the Memorial Library built later after the great war to these plans. The furniture in the library was designed by Gimson and made by Edward Barnsley in the workshop that now bears his name in Froxfield.

Plans for the ladderback chairs made for the Library

As a community we are hugely privileged to have this grade one listed facility at our daily disposal and it is of enormous satisfaction that the legacy of the Arts and Crafts period remains flourishing in these parts. The relationship between the Barnsley workshop and Bedales remains strong with the Barnsley Scholar annual award to an upper sixth Design student cementing that relationship.

The exhibition of the furniture of the Edward Barnsley workshop  and some fine paintings inspired by the local landscape by renown artists working in the area can still be seen until 6 December. Further details on the gallery website.

By Ben Shaw, Head of Design

Pictured:
1) Geoffrey Lupton constructing the Library
2) Edward Barnsley
3) Plans for the ladderback chairs made for the Library


Bedales School is one of the UK’s top independent private co-education boarding schools. Bedales comprises three schools situated in Steep, near Petersfield, Hampshire: Dunannie (ages 3–8), Dunhurst (ages 8–13) and Bedales itself (ages 13–18). Established in 1893 Bedales School puts emphasis on the Arts, Sciences, voluntary service, pastoral care, and listening to students’ views. Bedales is acclaimed for its drama, theatre, art and music. The Headmaster is Keith Budge.

Hänsel and Gretel: a truly magical opera

As we all know, music is very special in the Bedales community. On Wednesday and Thursday last week, those of us who were lucky enough to get tickets (as they were all sold out weeks before the performances!), felt really privileged to attend this wonderful opera.

Hänsel and Gretel was originally composed by Engelbert Humperdinck in 1893 (in fact, the year John Badley founded Bedales!) so it was just perfect to perform it in the Lupton Hall.

The opera showcased the great collaboration of the Arts: Phillip Guy-Bromley (director), Sheila Rowe (producer), Nick Gleed and Will Lithgow (répétiteurs), Jo Alldridge (choreographer), Simon Sharp (set designer) and Rod Edwards and Cameron Cross (lighting technicians).

Superb singing, fantastic music playing, beautiful set, costumes, lighting and dance made this event truly amazing. And it was great to have our Bedales and Dunhurst musicians together: the young Dunhurstian singers added even more magic to the final scene.

Hänsel and Gretel were played respectively by 6.2s Olivia Brett and Immy Welch, two phenomenal and exceptional singers. Block 5 George Butler (the father in the fairy tale) and Josh Grubb (6.2) playing the clarinet also stood out. Everybody worked so hard.

It was so professionally done, polished and brilliant: “la cerise sur le gâteau” seems quite fitting here!

As always, a massive bravo to the Music department and a very big thank you to everyone involved. This special event will be remembered and cherished in our hearts for many years to come. John Badley (looking from above) must have been very proud indeed.

This fairytale opera was indeed truly magical! What a great treat!

By Marie-Pierre Hamard, Teacher of French

Hänsel and Gretel: a truly magical opera

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Bedales School is one of the UK’s top independent private co-education boarding schools. Bedales comprises three schools situated in Steep, near Petersfield, Hampshire: Dunannie (ages 3–8), Dunhurst (ages 8–13) and Bedales itself (ages 13–18). Established in 1893 Bedales School puts emphasis on the Arts, Sciences, voluntary service, pastoral care, and listening to students’ views. Bedales is acclaimed for its drama, theatre, art and music. The Headmaster is Keith Budge.

Hansel and Gretel come to the Lupton Hall

Bedales music students are performing the opera of the famous children’s fairy story Hansel and Gretel with music by Engelbert Humperdinck in the Lupton Hall on Sunday 30 June at 7 pm (the day after Parents’ Day) and Monday 1July at 8 pm. This promises to be a marvellous opportunity to hear some of our top singers performing this beautiful music. Free tickets are available from tickets@bedales.org.uk or 01730 711511.

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Bedales School is one of the UK’s top independent private co-education boarding schools. Bedales comprises three schools situated in Steep, near Petersfield, Hampshire: Dunannie (ages 3–8), Dunhurst (ages 8–13) and Bedales itself (ages 13–18). Established in 1893 Bedales School puts emphasis on the Arts, Sciences, voluntary service, pastoral care, and listening to students’ views. Bedales is acclaimed for its drama, theatre, art and music. The Headmaster is Keith Budge.