Newbury Manor School - Frome

Newbury Manor School is a specialist school for 30 young people who have autistic spectrum disorders (ASD). Our tailored approach means we are able to support young people with a wide range of needs, from those who are broadly average in their ability to others, who have more severe learning difficulties.

We accept that young people who are referred to us may have previously experienced a ‘cycle of failure’ and our aim is to have a transformational impact on their lives by through experiencing our ‘culture of success.’ We support all young people to achieve successful adult outcomes so that they can lead fulfilling and rewarding lives. 

We support young people between 7 and 19 years of age and offer a flexible range of packages including:

  • Day, weekly/termly boarding and 52 week provision
  • Full and part time
  • A broad and balanced curriculum, tailored to individual need
  • A wide range of accreditation 
  • A focus on holistic outcomes for every young person 
  • Direct or indirect therapeutic input
  • Carefully planned transition, including re-integration to mainstream / maintained provision, where appropriate
  • Outreach and advisory support

We are purposefully small so that we can offer highly bespoke packages of education, care and therapy for our young people. We strongly believe that some individuals will always struggle to ‘fit in’ to existing structures and will only thrive when their provision is tailored to their specific needs and circumstances. We warmly welcome our students into our community, which is underpinned by a culture of outstanding relationships, nurture and unconditional high regard

We take pride in the environment we can offer. The school is located in a beautiful, quiet, rural location in Somerset in a Georgian manor house, which has a range of outbuildings and extensive grounds. The nearby Bath Road Children’s Home, which provides residential options for our students, is newly renovated and offers excellent accommodation, specialist staff and opportunities to develop independent life skills.

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Our Services

Fees and Funding

Referrals & Admissions

Newbury Manor School Admissions

Newbury Manor School, Mells, is a specialist school for students with autistic spectrum disorders (ASD) with moderate to severe learning difficulties and associated complex needs. Due to the diversity of terminology students may be diagnosed with high functioning autism (HFA), autistic spectrum disorder (ASD), pervasive development disorder (PDD), or Asperger's Syndrome traits.

Admissions criteria

  • Boys and girls aged between 7 and 19
  • A diagnosis of ASD with moderate to severe learning difficulties and complex needs
  • A statement of special educational need

Admissions process

Students who are invited for an interview have been formally assessed and statemented under the Education Acts of 1981 and 1993. Most families come to Newbury Manor School not knowing what to expect. During several hours on the day of visit, there is the opportunity to see the school at work, join into the various groups and get a general feel of the school. Some assessment of a student’s learning style and previous experience may be necessary but there is no admission test to pass.

Our admissions process is in three parts:

1. Parents are invited for an informal view to see the college in action

2. The young person is invited to spend some time at the college, usually overnight

3. When agreement is reached between the parents, local education authority (LEA) and the school, the young person is admitted as a student

Accessing and Funding of Education and Care

Newbury Manor School has a nationwide intake of boys and girls aged 7 to 19 years with autistic spectrum disorders (ASD) with moderate to severe learning difficulties and associated complex needs. Most students will have a Statement of Special Educational Need.

Young people are referred to Newbury Manor School via local authorities, social services, education departments and health departments.

Placements are long-term and for up to 52 weeks of the year depending on individual need. 

More Info


Newbury Manor School is fully approved by the DCSF as a specialist residential school for pupils with autistic spectrum disorders (ASD) with moderate to severe learning difficulties and associated complex needs and has recently achieved the Investors in People Award.

The curriculum is tailored to individual needs so that delivery styles, content and priorities meet their needs. The curriculum accessed by each student contains elements of the National Curriculum that are personalised and adapted to the pace, progression and specific needs of the young person as indicated in their Statement of Educational Need.


Newbury Manor School provides residential care through its range of living units in which we aim to provide students with the highest standards of care in a safe, predictable and stimulating environment. All students are allocated a pastoral tutor, whose primary task is to ensure the happiness and well being of individuals in their care. Pastoral tutors assist the class teacher and consultant psychologist through drawing up an individual education plan (IEP) which highlights strengths and weaknesses, and sets realistic targets. This is done by focusing on the areas of need as identified in student’s statements and reviews.

Newbury Manor School is aware of the difficulties that students can experience when away from home and tries to ensure that the environment is warm, secure and understanding. There is a large care staff team that, with tutors, endeavours to maintain links with home and share in keeping families up to date and involved in what happens at school. We aim to understand the individual needs of our students and ensure that leisure time is enjoyable, offering every student opportunities to develop new skills and face new challenges.

Accommodation and Facilities

Newbury Manor School is set in five acres of beautiful Somerset countryside. The main building, a grade II listed Queen Anne house accommodates all the residential units, kitchen and dining room and administrative offices. The majority of the educational facilities are located within the grounds. Bath is only 12 miles away and we are 80 minutes by train from London Paddington.

Accommodation is mainly through single room accomodation. All students have access to a lounge area for TV and video/DVD as well as facilities for making drinks and snacks. We have three separate living areas and an independent unit within the school, together with purpose built accommodation in Stoke St.Michael and Shepton Mallett.

Newbury Manor School has a range of specialist facilities. We have a sensory room, where students can work on their visual, tactile and auditory stimulation. We also have a sensory integration room, with suspended equipment. The newest addition to our therapeutic facilities is an independent living flat, which allows our students to develop their independent life skills in a simulated home environment within the safety of the school, before embedding these skills in the real world.

Our young people have access to a wide range of educational activities and experiences outside of the classroom. Our extensive grounds give opportunities to develop skills in horticulture, animal care and forest school activities. Away from our site, we have a range of partnerships in the community which allow our students to access activities such as horse riding, swimming, work experience and a range of outdoor pursuits. 

Life development plans

Our experienced staff are specifically trained to provide a range of succesful interventions and support strategies which can include:

  • Intensive, personalised educational support and activity support
  • Intensive therapeutic and sensory diets
  • PECS - Picture Exchange Communication System
  • TEACCH - Treatment and education of Autistic and Related Communication Handicapped Children
  • Individually differentiated educational and social timetables
  • Access to sensory integration programmes

Newbury Manor School Policies

Newbury Manor School's Special Educational Needs Policy references the CDSF document Code of Practice on the identification and assessment of Special Educational Needs.

The School has a range of polices and local procedures regarding the welfare of students which are available on request:

  • Safeguarding Policy
  • Local Safeguarding Procedure
  • Anti Bullying Policy
  • Behaviour Management Policy
  • Exclusions Policy
  • Assessment Procedure
  • Complaints Policy with summary of complaints ( 2011 / 2012 )
  • Curriculum Policy
  • Equality and Diversity
  • English as an Additional Language
  • Health and Safety Procedures  
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Ofsted

Holistic approach

We are proud to offer a range of on-site therapy for both the school and children’s home. Our highly experienced therapy team includes a Speech and Language Therapist, Occupational Therapist, Counsellor / Play Therapist and Educational Psychologist. Care, education and therapy teams are integrated and work as a cohesive whole. We offer a range of opportunities that allow our young people to develop their interests, aspirations, social and emotional resilience, communication skills, self esteem and wellbeing.

These include:

  • Individual care pathways tailored to individual needs
  • Behavioural therapy
  • Child and adolescent psychiatry and psychological support where needed
  • Access to specialist literacy support
  • Access to speech and language therapy and occupational therapy
  • Access to educational psychology

We have developed and maintain very close working relationships with a range of local healthcare providers, including specialist CAMHS teams and work together to meet the needs of our students. We work closely with social care services to offer a range of packages to meet the needs of young people and their families / carers.

Newbury Manor School Quality and Regulation

Priory Education Services has a system for auditing the services provided against the regulations detailed by Ofsted Care and Education Inspection Standards and National Minimum Standards where appropriate. These are implemented at individual school level by managers and staff as part of the day to day life and work of the school and include expectations, systems, policy and procedures. Each school is audited for the quality of its provision and outcomes for the young people in its care by Priory's Regional Managers and by the School Improvement Partners who visit every term. The 'Every Child Matters' (ECM) agenda is at the heart of everything we do.

Location Details