Reed’s School describes its unique position as a ‘foundation with a school’ and its important work with alumnus Tim Henman and his charitable foundation

Reed’s School was founded as a charitable orphanage in 1813 by Rev. Dr Andrew Reed.  It was originally named the London Orphan Asylum, during a time when ‘asylum’ meant a place of sanctuary. Reed believed all children, regardless of circumstances, deserved access to a good education to break the cycle of disadvantage. This charitable ethos remains our beating heart; we are a foundation with a school, not a school with a foundation.

Although now a successful, independent school with 800 pupils set in Surrey, the Andrew Reed Foundation supports children who have suffered the loss of one or both parents and experienced some of life’s worst traumas at a very young age. Each year, the number of Foundation pupils supported is approximately 70.  Coming to Reed’s gives them continuity, support, care and, most importantly, the hope for a better future for themselves and their families. They, in turn, bring something very special to the Reed’s community and the Foundation’s ethos comes through everything that is done at School with understanding and compassion. This symbiosis between School and Foundation is one that is unique and brings benefits to the whole community and beyond.

Tim Henman (topright) At Reed's School In
Tim Henman (top right) in 1990, during his time as a scholarship pupil at Reed’s School

In addition, through the work of our Outreach programme, the reach of the Foundation is extended to help raise the aspirations and attainment of children in the state sector. Today, over 40 state primary and secondary schools in economically deprived areas within London and the south east are part of this programme and some 1,800 children are hosted at Reed’s – engaging our staff and pupils to deliver enrichment activities using our facilities. 

Much of this work would not be possible without the strong partnerships developed over the last few years with a broad range of partners to ensure the Foundation supports the most deserving children. This includes local authorities, youth groups, children’s charities, social mobility organisations and other charitable foundations. This, of course, includes the Tim Henman Foundation – an organisation that we are very proud of, having been founded by one of our alumni.

Today, Tim Henman Foundation provides targeted funding for six Reed’s Foundation pupils to attend the school and experience the same opportunities he received” 

The forging of meaningful relationships is not only important externally but internally too.  Working with state-school teachers, charities and families directly, there is in place a bespoke and caring Foundation application process for bursaries.  By the time the children join, a tailored support plan is already established covering their social, emotional, and academic needs.  It’s the holistic approach that Reed’s provides which enables our Foundation pupils to integrate into everyday school life and have opportunities to shine and flourish.

Reed’s unique ‘Circle of Support’ ensures no child falls through the net. Every member of staff is empowered to take on a duty of care that complements the education on offer to ensure that every child’s time at Reed’s is as fulfilled as it can be. The wellbeing of every pupil is at the heart of this, and emphasis is on collaborative teamwork, regular communication and shared strategies.  

Reed's and Tim Henman – foundations of strength
The Tim Henman Foundation works with disadvantaged young people through the three strands of sport, education and health

It is this unique model that Tim Henman – a former tennis scholar at Reed’s and since then a loyal and active ‘Old Reedonian’ – was able to see for himself.  Tim is so grateful for the scholarship he received from the school in recognition of his sporting talents that he wanted to provide the same opportunities for children, regardless of background. So, when the Tim Henman Foundation (THF) was established in 2015, he felt it was important that the charity worked with the Reed’s Foundation because of their shared values: that every child deserves the right to fulfil their potential. Today, THF provides targeted funding for six Reed’s Foundation pupils to attend the school and experience the same opportunities he was able to receive. 

This educational focus is very much part of the three key strands of the Tim Henman Foundation: sport, education and health. Naturally, as a sportsman himself, he and the team at THF fully understand the benefits sport can bring to young people. The physical benefits are clear to see, and the mental health benefits of regular participation in activity are increasingly valued. Benefits also reach further by increasing confidence and resilience. The THF firmly believes that young athletes should have the opportunity to pursue their sporting aspirations, which is why they provide support in the form of funding and mentoring to those with goals of reaching an elite or professional level.

“This symbiosis between Reed’s School and Foundation is one that is unique and brings benefits to the whole community and beyond “

Like the Reed’s Foundation, the THF understands the important work that community-based organisations do for young people. However, one-third of these types of organisations don’t have enough reserves to cover even three months of running costs (source: Sported Foundation, Parliamentary written paper), yet the coaches, teachers and mentors act as important role models. THF partners with these organisations to make sure these essential sport and education opportunities continue to be available. 

Reeds T H F
Tim Henman remains a committed ‘Old Reedonian’, acutely aware of the life-changing opportunities a scholarship can bring

In addition to this strand of work, the Tim Henman Foundation also runs initiatives to support and provide opportunities for young people who have special educational needs and disability.  Working with SEND units within schools and special needs schools is an important part of their strategy. There are substantial financial barriers to getting the required specialist support or additional opportunities that young people with special needs and disabilities deserve.  Families face, on average, extra costs of £581 a month and for almost a quarter (24%) of families with disabled children, extra costs amount to over £1,000 a month (source: By delivering programmes specifically for those with SEND the Tim Henman Foundation ensures these youngsters have the support they need to be happier, healthier and to thrive.

Both Foundations exemplify commitment to providing education and support for children who have faced significant challenges in their lives. With a rich history rooted in charitable values, the Andrew Reed Foundation continues to nurture a symbiotic relationship between the school and the wider community; the support of the Tim Henman Foundation is crucial to this aim. Fostering partnerships and implementing outreach programmes allow the impact to extend beyond immediate beneficiaries and, through shared values and dedication, these organisations create a brighter future for all.

Reed’s School

Tim Henman Foundation

Further reading: Knightsbridge School and Place2Be’s wellbeing partnership