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Our raison d’être is to equip girls socially, emotionally and economically to succeed in an increasingly complex international world.

Life within the House

In September 2016, we move into our beautiful, newly re-furbished building, designed for 65 girls from Shell to Lower Sixth. It is a lively, welcoming and caring community in which to live and learn during term time. The boarding accommodation is located on three floors with a friendly mix of year groups and nationalities in the house.  The girls share a spacious, light and comfortable common room, gathering here for house meetings and events, relaxation and conversation. It’s the social hub of the house and there is also a fully fitted family kitchen in which the girls can cook and bake at the weekend, in addition to games consoles, books and a piano.  Life in Toynbee house is busy and fun; girls form lifelong friendships here, under the watchful eyes of the experienced staff members that care for them. 

Louise Porter
Housemistress - Mrs Louise Porter

Mrs Porter is the Housemistress of Toynbee. Having joined Ardingly in 2014, she became an Assistant Housemistress the following year. She has taught English for the last 12 years, including for a short time in France and has taught at The Weald of Kent Grammar School for Girls and Sevenoaks School in Kent. She has a BA (Hons) in English and French and an MA in English Literature and runs the Middle School Literary Society.

Her interests include craft, swimming and the history of women’s rights.

Mrs Porter lives in a self-contained house attached to the boarding house with her husband Dr Miles Porter, who is Head of Chemistry at the College. They have two young daughters, Dilys (5) and Bonnie (4), who attend Ardingly Pre Prep and who love the fact they have so many ‘older sisters’ to play with in the boarding house!

Helena SilvaAssistant Housemistress - Ms Helena Silva

Ms Silva is from a small town in the North of Portugal and joined Ardingly in 2015, when she became an Assistant Housemistress. Previously, she taught at Wellington Academy, where she was a resident tutor in a boarding house. She teaches Mathematics and holds an MSc in the subject. She pioneers girls’ football at the College and loves walking and cooking.



Matron and the Tutor Team

During the day, the house matron, Mrs Liz Hayes, helps to look after the girls. They quickly get to know and rely on matron for a variety of daily needs, from a listening ear to laundry needs and uniform repairs.

Toynbee House is fortunate to have a highly experienced tutor team, which consists of senior school teachers from a range of academic disciplines; each evening prep session is supervised by one of these tutors, who is also on hand to assist the girls with their prep, if appropriate. The tutors also support house sporting, musical and social events; in this way, the girls are encouraged to develop productive relationships with other adults in the house, away from the classroom.

We invite you to learn more about life in Toynbee on our Twitter page (from September 2016) or by contacting the Housemistress, Louise Porter: t: 01444 893168.

Toynbee House take the Mannequin Challenge
Toynbee Twitter