Queen Ethelburga’s students follow a sports programme with the values of fair play, honesty and determination at its heart. Our motto of ‘to be the best that I can, with the gifts that I have’ is never more evident than through the work we do as TEAM QE.

Sports Facilities

Queen Ethelburga's has a dedicated Sports Village, completed in 2016, to which all students have access to inside and outside of formal school hours.

The Village is home to a 25-metre swimming pool, triple court sports hall, gym and specialist studios. Outside we have a four-lane synthetic cushioned running track and over 30 acres of grass and 3G artificial pitches.

QE's Sports Village is built to a professional standard for students to practise competing at an industry standard. The Sports and Leisure Teams regularly host Premier League football teams, like Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester United, at the Village through the school holidays.

Facilities at a Premier League Standard

Interview with Ed Brand, Under-18 Head Coach of Chelsea Football Club.

Physical Education

All Queen Ethelburga’s students follow a sports programme designed to stimulate the values of fair play, honesty, determination and application through a wide variety of pursuits.  

Health and fitness is a vital part of school life for QE students with many continuing with sport and exercise, either recreationally or as a route of study, through to their chosen university or career pathway.


There are a wide range of sports and activities available including:

  • Football
  • Netball
  • Cricket
  • Swimming
  • Basketball
  • Rounders
  • Tennis
  • Fencing
  • Dance
  • Gymnastics
  • Trampolining
  • Archery
  • Cross Country
  • Badminton
  • Volleyball 



The facilities on campus are outstanding, with the recent development of our dedicated Sports Village, to which all students have additional access outside of formal school hours. Staff cater for all abilities and encourage each student to enjoy all the fantastic opportunities on offer during their time at QE. 

Performance Sports

There are five performance sports at Queen Ethelburga's: Rugby, Basketball, Cricket, Football and Netball. These sports benefit from higher coaching expertise, the opportunity to compete at a good level across different age ranges and the option to partake in Performance Sport Programmes.

Specialist high-level coaching, as part of a Performance Sports Programme, is provided for students attending The Faculty, wishing to pursue their chosen sport and represent that sport at the county level or above.

Each student's programme follows a unique scheme of work, including the latest tactical, technical, physical and mental training. They are designed with individual talent development as the key component and present opportunities for students to develop their skills through to UK and international competition.  

Our Sports Science Centre provides students with a movement analysis testing and monitoring facility, together with equipment designed for assessing a broad range of health and fitness indicators. To help the rehabilitation and post-training recovery of our students, we also have our Sports Treatment Centre, where we use tools such as cryotherapy cold spa baths.  

All of our Performance Sport students are enrolled within The Faculty, where the flexibility of the curriculum allows them to combine their sporting programme with a range of options in GCSE, A level and BTEC courses in both Key Stages 4 and 5. This enables them to maintain a well-rounded education whilst pursuing their passion. They also have access to a strong network of pastoral and academic support, including Tutors, Heads of Year, and Academic Learning Mentors.  

Students are taught responsibility, resilience and leadership skills and challenged to achieve at the highest level at all times.

Watch Dara's story to see how the Performance Sports Programme has helped him pursue his career in basketball.

Dara's Story

In the QE Faculty Class of 2022, Dara tells his story of how Queen Ethelburga’s shaped his love for basketball and opened new opportunities for his future. He is now signed with Taft School in Connecticut and has represented Great Britain in their Under-18 team at the European Championships.

The Five Performance Sports

Some thoughts from our Team QE alumni...

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My greatest highlight at QE has been participating in the Sport Elite Programme for hockey. Since beginning the program in Year 10, I quickly progressed from playing 3rd team hockey at Leeds Hockey Club to playing in the 1st team. Now post-QE, I have continued to play a high level of hockey at the University of Nottingham.

The hockey coaches went out of their way to introduce us to new skills and to clarify tactics and formations. Unlike other schools and sports clubs, QE’s coaching staff was supportive of both my sporting and academic pursuits, valuing not only the player but the individual.

My two years at QE were two of the best years of my school career. I got the opportunity to have a taste of what it was like to train as a full-time athlete, while completing my A-levels in one of the best schools in the area. 

I developed my hockey skills massively with the help of two fantastic coaches. Not only were they coaches, but they were also friends who supported you on and off the pitch.

QE helped me get to my chosen university and helped me push my hockey to a higher level. 

The QE experience is not something you find easily. It has a perfect balance of high standard academics and high standard sport which is exactly what I was looking for after being released by York City Football Club. Deciding to go to QE was the best decision I have ever made in my life. I would not be where I am today if it was not for everyone at QE.

The standard of coaching is in a different class. Mr Bolland and Mr Newey always pushed us to be the best players we could, whilst also always believing in us, giving us support when needed, and having a great time along the way too. 

QE has made it possible for me to realise my potential and I will forever be thankful for the place.