Merchiston Castle School

Type of school: Boys Senior school

Nearest international airport: Edinburgh (8km)

Age Range: 7-18

Number of pupils: 470

Number of boarders: 330

Fees per term: Boarding: £6,100–£9,520
Day: £4,350–£7,015


Photo of Merchiston Castle 2013profile

Based in 100 acres of beautiful parkland, Merchiston is a Scottish school, offering the English curriculum, and has a global, outward-looking dimension. The School is located just 15 minutes from Edinburgh International Airport, which has over 100 direct routes across the world.

A value-added education

Merchiston encourages self-reliance and independence, as well as respect and tolerance for others. The School has effective approaches to develop each boy’s personal achievement and boasts an impressive record of helping pupils excel far beyond their expected results at GCSE and A-level.

Academic success

Exam results have placed Merchiston at the top of the A-level league tables of Scottish schools for the last three years (The Herald, The Sunday Times ‘Parent Power’,

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Home away from home

From its youngest boarder, aged 7, to the young men in the Sixth Form, Merchiston provides a full-boarding programme seven days a week and is an extremely nurturing school, achieving the top grade, ‘Excellent’, in all areas inspected by the Care Inspectorate, in 2012 and 2013.


‘It is my common experience in life that when I buy something new, after the original excitement of the purchase dies down, I often start finding small faults with it. With our children’s education at Merchiston, however, it has been exactly the opposite. In every respect – academic, sporting
and pastoral – the School has exceeded our expectations, and continues to do so. In particular, the staff appear to have an almost magical ability
to maximise the potential of every boy, irrespective of their natural talents. But above all, it is the Merchiston “end product” that impresses us year after year; the young men who leave the School for university each year are polite, confident gentlemen, that any parent would be proud to call their sons.’

Current parent


There is a sport for every boy at Merchiston

There is a long and successful tradition of sport at Merchiston, with equal emphasis on recreation and excellence. There are over 20 sports and 30 co-curricular activities on offer for boys of all abilities, as well as specialist Tennis and Golf Academies. The School is currently represented nationally and internationally in many sports such as athletics, cricket, golf and rugby.

Links with girls’ schools

Merchiston also benefits from its strong links with girls’ schools for drama performances, cultural events and social gatherings.

The School provided excellent opportunities and activities for me to participate in, which catered for my interests, as well as giving me the best teaching and tuition, which led to my gaining a place at Cambridge.

Photo of AAGuide Merchiston 2 300x140Scholarships and financial assistance
A range of scholarships are available at ages 10+. Means-tested financial assistance is available subject to application.

‘Our main objective is to motivate pupils to try their hardest and to strive to achieve the highest levels possible in all areas, whilst living as part of a community. Whilst we are concentrating on the academic platform of each boy, alongside the importance of co-curricular activities, we also try to focus on developing boys who are all-rounders with a sense of values.’
Andrew Hunter, Headmaster

‘A balanced curriculum, excellent pastoral care and a high A-level pass rate make Merchiston one of the UK’s leading independent schools.’