Arts college where Orlando Bloom and Helena Bonham Carter studied aces Ofsted

PUBLISHED: 17:00 23 May 2012 | UPDATED: 15:39 24 May 2012

Staff and pupils of Fine Arts College Hampstead pose beside a Van Gogh they repainted for charity

Staff and pupils of Fine Arts College Hampstead pose beside a Van Gogh they repainted for charity


A Belsize Park arts college, whose former pupils include actors Orlando Bloom and Helena Bonham Carter, has proved it is streets ahead after being given an "outstanding" rating by Ofsted inspectors.

Fine Arts College Hampstead in Lambolle Place was given an outstanding rating in all seven categories it was assessed in, including quality of education and pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development.

Ofsted inspectors also praised the teaching and said: “The quality of teaching and assessment is outstanding overall.

“It is consistently good and is exemplary in many subjects, particularly in the arts and humanities.

“Teachers’ excellent subject knowledge and expertise engage and inspire students.”

Principal Nicholas Cochrane, said: “There is a sense of real achievement. It’s a team effort. We feel very elated as a team to have achieved this.”

The independent sixth form college has shown a leap in progress from a rating of good when it was last assessed in 2008.


Mr Cochrane, attributed this to implementing Ofsted’s feedback after its last assessment and the college’s own improvements.

He added: “The one unchanging thing has been the ethos, which is work hard and be nice to people.

“When Candida Cave (co-principal) and I set up the college, we wanted somewhere we would have liked to have come toourselves.

“We are relaxed and not as institutional as some schools can be.

“We provide pastoral care. Everyone has a personal tutor, so if there’s anything worrying them we know about it.”

The college specialises in arts and humanities and provides GCSE, AS-level, A-level and English Baccalaureate qualifications.

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