Eton College

sights / Architecture

Eton College information

Windsor & Eton , England
High St, Eton
+44 1753 370100
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closed to the public
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Eton College is the largest and most famous public (meaning private and fee-paying) boys' school in England, and arguably the most enduring symbol of England's class system. High-profile alumni include 19 British prime ministers, countless princes, kings and maharajas, famous explorers, authors, actors and economists – among them Princes William and Harry, George Orwell, Ian Fleming, John Maynard Keynes, Bear Grylls and Eddie Redmayne.

Eton was founded by Henry VI in 1440 with a view towards educating 70 highly qualified boys awarded a scholarship from a fund endowed by the king. Every year since then, 70 King's Scholars have been chosen based on the results of a highly competitive exam; these pupils are housed in separate quarters from the 1300 or so other students. All pupils are boarders and must wear formal tailcoats, waistcoats and white collars to lessons (though the top hats went out in 1948).

At the time of writing, no public visits or tours of Eton College were available. Small-group tours may begin in early 2017; check the website.