In 1933 Downside Abbey bought the Paddockhurst  estate in Sussex in order to start a junior school to feed the senior school at Downside.  It was a dependent monastic foundation called Worth Priory (named after a nearby village) with monks from Downside running Worth Preparatory School.  The school was evacuated to Downside during WW2 but returned in September 1945 and grew to be one of the biggest Preparatory Schools in the country by the late 1950s, taking in boys as young as 6 years old.

In 1957 Downside Abbey granted Worth Priory independence , and in 1959 a new senior school, Worth School, was started.   Worth Preparatory School was gradually reduced over the next 6 years until in 1965, when Worth Priory became Worth Abbey,  the Prep School became Worth Junior House taking in boys aged 11 for 2 years. It retained it’s separate identity to Worth (Senior) School for another 35 years , after which time it was integrated with the senior school and renamed Austin House.


Go to –  The Agius Family Connection to Downside and Worth


Summer 1934 – End of Foundation Year


Go to – Worth School Photos        (Desktop with hover and zoom)

or  Worth School Photos – iPad    (iPad friendly with click to expand)

The Worth Record 

Starting in the Lent Term 1946 , the Worth Record termly magazine gives a fascinating insight into the growth of Worth Priory and Prep School and charts its transformation into the Worth Abbey and School that we know today.

For further information go to

Worth Abbey –

Worth School –

Worth Society –


Worth Prep School (1933-1965)  Facebook Group



With thanks to Peter Hawkins (1945-49) , Michael Hawkins (1949-53), Peter Pavry (1953-58) and Rupert Cuddon-Large (1961-66)  for providing scans and original copies of the Worth Record.  Additional photos from Jim Sherry (1955-61) , Gus Mackay (1953-57),  Ross Kilpatrick (1961-66) , George Hutchins (1962-66).  This archive compiled by Peter Agius (1962-66).With the blessing and approval of Worth Abbey and School.

If you wish to be entered on the Worth (Prep) School database and be advised of future events then please contact




Photos – Vol I –  Jan 1946 – Jul 1948
Photos – Vol II – Sep 1948- Jul 1950
Photos – Vol III & IV – Sep 1950 – Jul 1953
Photos – Vol V to VII – Sep 1953 – Dec 1959
Photos – New Series – Jan 1960 – 1966
Dom Denis Agius – Worth Album – 1955/56
Worth 2016
Worth Prep School Reunion – 21st September 2017