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Our UK Locations

Beauty, history and culture
The traditional English experience
The UK's coolest seaside town
The UK capital

Our US Locations

San Francisco
'The city that knows how'
An All-American experience
San Diego
'America's finest city'
The education capital of America

Our Canada locations

Dynamic multicultural metropolis
Traditional Canadian Experience


Canterbury Cathedral, cream teas and river punting - if you are looking for that traditional English experience then look no further than Stafford House Canterbury

Top 5 things to see in Canterbury

  • Canterbury Cathedral

    Canterbury Cathedral

  • Trips on the river

    Trips on the river

  • Leeds castle

    Leeds castle

  • Dover Castle

    Dover Castle

  • Paris by Eurostar

    Paris by Eurostar

The School

Canterbury is in the heart of the Kent countryside, which is known as ‘The Garden of England’. This corner of England is rich in history because it is so close to mainland Europe – you will find castles everywhere you go! Paris and Brussels are just a short journey away. Our light, bright school is just moments from the centre of this medieval city, awash with history yet vibrant with student life from the three popular universities that also reside here.

Student Computers
45 mins long
Students in class
Average 10 (max 15)

School Facilities

  • Student lounge
  • IT lounge
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Library
  • Cafe
  • Outside courtyard
  • Interactive whiteboards
  • Self study room


Where you live is key to your happiness and academic success. Whether you prefer the independence of a student residence or the familiarity of homestay, our accommodation options are chosen to offer you the flexibility of choice and quality you deserve.


One of our most popular accommodation options, homestay allows you to integrate into family life and practise your English language outside the classroom, over dinner and throughout the weekend with your welcoming hosts. This is a unique way to live and study at your chosen destination.

Student houses

Similar to a residence but offering more independence, you will live with other students but on a smaller scale than in a residence, allowing you to build lasting friendships with your house mates. Fully furnished and equipped for self-catering.


Summer Residence 18+

Offering you more space to yourself, our hand-picked student residences provide the chance to live more independently with like-minded people from all over the world.



Summer Residence 16-17

We offer fully supervised residences for 16 & 17 year olds in July and August. This comes with a bespoke social programme designed for this age group as well as full board catering.

The residences include breakfast, lunch and dinner at Stafford House canteen and live-in residential supervisors. This is a great alternative to homestay for students under 18.



Meet our team

All of our teachers hold teaching qualifications ranging from certificate to diploma level and are committed to continuous development and share our passion for learning with our students.

  • Alicia Giles

    Student Services Officer

    Hello my name is Alicia. As part of the Student Services Team I am here to answer any of your questions or help you with anything you may need. You will find me on the reception desk, I am very friendly so do don't be afraid to ask me if you need to know something.

  • Amanda Bell

    Student Services Officer                  

    I have been with Stafford House since 2010 where I work as a receptionist; which includes helping students with everyday enquiries. I like meeting students from all over the world and helping them where possible, every day is different.

    Prior to working at Stafford House, I was for 7 years Practice Manager at a complimentary clinic in Eastry.  Before this, I was Branch Administrator for Legal & General in Canterbury, again, for 7 years until the Branch closed.  When first moving to Canterbury, I worked for the Senior Partner of a solicitors’ firm for 4 years, prior to his early retirement and, before this, I worked in London for a number of PR firms and one political consultancy as PA to their senior consultants and MD’s. 



  • Ffion Newberry

    Activity Leader                    

    Hi i am Ffion, I work on the activity programme. I get to take our students to lots of exciting places and explore. If you need any help or want more information about our activities please come and ask. I am always here to help!

  • Janice Addison

    Accommodation Officer

    I have been an Accommodation Officer for Stafford House in Canterbury since December 2005.  In my role as Accommodation Officer one of my tasks is to place students into host families, taking into account any allergies or requests that the student may have.

    I was born in Canterbury, attended the local schools and college.  I married and raised our 3 children here.  I was also a host family for many years when my children were younger so know how important it is for the students to be placed into a homestay where they will be comfortable and happy.  As I have lived in Canterbury all my life I know a lot of our host families from school days (mine and my children’s) and from previous positions that I have held.  I ask host families to treat all students as they would like their own children to be treated if they went to stay with a family in another country.

    I held various jobs before I joined Stafford House including working as a Personnel Assistant, a Checkout Manager and a Security Manager.  All of these positions were customer facing as I enjoy talking to people.

  • Laura McDowell

    Student Services Manager

    I have been with Canterbury SoE since Aug 2014 in the role of Student Services Manager. My responsibilities include looking after the student journey from start to finish, managing student welfare, finance and all different types of accommodation. I work with a brilliant accommodation team, finance co coordinator and reception team who all want to help make students’ lives as easy as possible when settling into Canterbury life. I love how every day is different, I enjoy enhancing any aspect the students journey where ever possible to ensure satisfaction levels are as high as possible.

    Customer service is very important to me and I will always try to exceed expectations of anyone that chooses to study in our school. Previously I used to work for a large retailer where I was a Customer Service Manager for 11 years, I learnt a lot in my time there about how important the customers really are. I grew teams that succeeded to a high standard which helped to create a customer focused culture that shone through many stores I worked in.

  • Mary Eastley

    Student Services Officer

    Hi I'm Mary, I work as a Student Services Officer. I joined Stafford House Canterbury in 2016. My role is to assist accommodation when placing student in Home stay. I love meeting new students and making their stay even better where possible.

  • Pat O'Donoghue


    I started teaching English in 1991 and joined Stafford House in 2001. I love meeting people from all over the world and seeing how they get on together.

    It is my hope they go home with a better understanding and view of different cultures, and of course of ours.

    I feel my role is to be like an Ambassador in my own country!

  • Shirley Neal

    Assistant Director of Studies

    I have taught English as a foreign language since 1993 and have lived and worked in various countries including Ukraine, Bosnia and Greece.

    I started working for Stafford House as a teacher in 2004 and have also been a Course Director and Senior Teacher before becoming Assistant Director of Studies. I love the international feel of the school and the way students of all different nationalities come together so harmoniously.

    I also enjoy seeing students’ English improve and develop over their time here and am proud to be a part of it.

  • Vicky McWilliam

    Director of Studies                 

    I joined Stafford House in 2011 and really enjoy the variety of people we meet at this school. I've been involved in English Language teaching for many years now and I always welcome the fresh perspective our students bring. The professionalism of our teachers is inspiring and we never stop learning in this line of work. Canterbury is a vibrant city full of multinational students, so it's a great place to live and work.


Social Programme

Speak English as much as possible - including at break time, lunch time, in the evening and at weekends! There are social activities arranged every week, an opportunity to make friends and practise your speaking skills.

  • FRI


    SEP 2018




    Time: 15.30 | Price: Free! Sign Up Online!

    Meeting point: Reception at 19 New Dover Road

    Why go? Get your fix of exercise by joining us at sports this week! We have football, basketball, volleyball, badminton and table tennis.

  • SAT


    SEP 2018




    Time: 09.45 | Price: £40.00

    Meeting point: 19 New Dover Road

    Why go? Gear up and get ready to take the battle to the opposite team. Use team tactics to win or take matters into your own hands as a lone wolf!

  • MON


    SEP 2018

    Canterbury Walking Tour


    Canterbury Walking Tour

    Time: Confirmed On The Day | Price: FREE

    Meeting point: Reception

    Why go? New students can join us for a walk around Canterbury's historical and beautiful high street, learning some useful tips about life in Canterbury.

  • TUE


    SEP 2018

    Roman Museum Visit


    Roman Museum Visit

    Time: 15.30 | Price: Free! Sign Up Online!

    Meeting point: Reception

    Why go? Fancy a trip back into the Roman Canterbury Times? Do you like learning about history? Would you like to see Canterbury's Treasure?

  • WED


    SEP 2018

    Film Afternoon


    Film Afternoon

    Time: 15.30 | Price: Free! Sign Up Online!

    Meeting point: Room 105

    Why go? Watch one of the latest movies on the big screen with subtitles! Popcorn, drinks and snacks included!

  • WED


    SEP 2018

    The Big Quiz Night


    The Big Quiz Night

    Time: 18:30 | Price: Free! Sign Up Online

    Meeting point: Reception

    Why go? Can you and your fellow Lions win The Big Quiz? The quiz will have music, general knowledge and sports rounds.

  • THU


    SEP 2018

    Pub Night


    Pub Night

    Time: 18.30 | Price: Buy Your Own Drinks

    Meeting point: Reception

    Why go? Come and enjoy the evening in one of Canterbury's finest pubs. Play games or just relax the choice is yours!

  • FRI


    SEP 2018




    Time: 15.30 | Price: Free! Sign Up Online!

    Meeting point: Reception at 19 New Dover Road

    Why go? Get your fix of exercise by joining us at sports this week! We have football, basketball, volleyball, badminton and table tennis.

  • FRI


    SEP 2018

    Escape Room


    Escape Room

    Time: 13.30 | Price: £15

    Meeting point: Reception

    Why go? With clues to search for and puzzles to solve, you and your team have one hour to complete a challenging and exciting mission!

Social Feed

Nationality Mix

A healthy mix is key to students progression in English language and at Stafford House we are proud of a wide nationality mix across all our centres.

Top 5 Nationalities

  • Saudi Arabian
  • Thai
  • Korean
  • Kuwaiti
  • Chinese

Meet our students

To browse our student stories, click on their profile image below to read detailed student profiles.

  • Alexandra



    “I love my morning lessons – my teachers are really good and my English is improving really quickly. The classes really make you think – you get to discuss ideas and this helps you learn better.

    I chose Stafford House School of English because it was recommended by my cousin. I like that there are so many people from so many countries here.

    I love Canterbury, it’s beautiful. I love the shopping, the history, the Cathedral, the coffee shops – I love being here and getting to hang out with my friends.”

  • Dury


    North Korea

    “I want to be a musical actor. To do that and to do well, I need to be very good at English – which is why I am here at Stafford House School of English. Once I reach the English language level I need I will go to study at Cambridge School of Visual & Performing Arts! I love Canterbury for living in and for studying in, I love that London is so close for visiting and for shopping.”

    How did the drama lessons start?
    "I failed my first audition for the Drama Foundation course at Cambridge School of Visual & Performing Arts. I regretted it so much – I didn’t prepare. The school suggested I should take acting lessons."

    Was it difficult to learn the Shakespeare?
    "Yes. It was difficult to understand the monologue. There were lots of new words – like old words. Sarah (my tutor at Stafford House) translated everything for me."

    Do you feel you’ve made good progress at Stafford House?
    "Yes, especially listening and grammar."

    And you passed the next audition, didn’t you? Do you think these lessons helped you?
    "I’m really pleased about it! So happy! The lessons were really helpful. Absolutely."

    Have you enjoyed yourself here?
    "Yes. I’m really happy to make friends from other countries and English people and to know the culture here. The teachers at Stafford House are nice. I really like this school. The students are really nice and kind."

  • Ekaterina



    "I like Canterbury, I wish I could live here always – it’s so small, safe, peaceful and clean.”

  • Giulia



    “I hope to study medicine at university. I know that having a good understanding of English will help me with this.

    I love my lessons at Stafford House School of English. My teacher, Marina, really helps me with my English speaking – she is very understanding and friendly.

    There is a lot of freedom here. Everyone is free to do what they like (within reason!). Canterbury is a wonderful town – everything you need is here; shopping, coffee shops and the beach close-by, plus there’s a great social life.”

  • Hani


    Saudi Arabia

    “Canterbury is a really friendly and safe city.

    My favourite thing about School of English is the teachers, because they make me feel so welcome - I really feel like I am in my own country!

    The other students are like my sisters and brothers - I feel like I am at home here. Canterbury is not too big or too strange - you can walk anywhere, explore and find great places to hang out.”

  • Hosam


    Saudi Arabia

    The teachers here are very very good! I started here as a beginner and I didn’t know what I was saying, it was difficult to talk and understand others, communicate with people from different countries with different accents, now really I find it so easy to communicate with both internationals and native speakers and understand what they say. I think I’m ready to start my university studies and that means I’ve achieved my goal. I’ve passed the exams to start my pre-sessional course so Stafford House helped me to get into university that I wanted.

    Staff here is very helpful they always smile and always friendly – provide us help with everything we need. Stafford House is something else, it’s difficult to explain, it’s like my second home – I will miss it very much.

  • Insoo


    South Korea

    Teachers at Stafford house are so fabulous! I’ve learned from them not only English but also a lot about British culture. Classes are very enjoyable and fun – we learn by playing games and working in groups. When I arrived I could only understand about 20% of what people were saying to me in English but now I understand 80-90% so my English has definitely improved a lot! I was in Intermediate level and now I’m in Advanced.

    The staff here are very friendly and they are friends for me now not just staff. I’m staying in a host family and I’ve met the most angel-like host mother and father – I’m very happy living with them. They are very young – under 35 and it seems that they are like my friends. They have made my life in the UK much easier – they’ve even organised a special festival party for me. Social programme is great – excursions and activities change every week so we are not bored of it, and it’s a great chance to meet and socialise with other international students and practise your English.

  • Jan



    “Canterbury has a lot to offer; it has a great social life, it’s really welcoming to international students and it has a friendly atmosphere. I find the School to be an exceptionally pleasant place to study in – a really relaxed environment. The teachers are fun and approachable, and I enjoy mixing with so many other nationalities – learning about other cultures and making new friends."

  • Jeong-Hoon


    North Korea

    “I was nervous when I first arrived, but the teachers are so friendly and helpful that they made me feel at home instantly.  In the school I have the opportunity to talk to so many different people, we all speak English and this dramatically improves our learning.

    Every 3 weeks we have a personal tutorial - it's a great chance to understand where I am with my English and what I have to do to improve more. I am confident that my English is getting better and better and I can't wait to continue my studies at CATS Canterbury.”

  • Jixing



    “We always have fun in the lessons, plus they are always interesting – my English is improving all the time. Canterbury is perfect for studying – it’s so peaceful. Plus the coast is really close by – I love being able to swim in the sea and relax at the beach.”

  • Kaoru



    "I’ve been learning English at Stafford House School of English since June. I studied in Canterbury School for two months and I’m studying in London for four months until December.

    I studied in a relaxing environment in Canterbury and I could get used to living in Britain. There are lots of places to see in London. It is easy to access anywhere in Britain from London. I’m learning not only English but lots of things now. I talk to teachers and staff if I have some problems. They kindly help me every time.”


  • Kevin


    Hong Kong

    Kevin spent 5 months at Stafford House School of English in Canterbury and is now preparing to begin the Pre: Programme at CATS College Canterbury.

    Kevin's story
    Kevin finished F.5 in HK in last July, but the result was disappointing, with an English IELTS of only 2.5.

    His mother visited Stafford House in September together with Kevin, and they decided it would be a good place for him to improve his English before further study.

    Kevin made many friends from around the world - Korea, Saudi Arabia and more.

    After only 5 months at Stafford House, Kevin's mother was delighted to find that Kevin had improved significantly – he is now able to speak English well and his listening skills are also very strong.

    For his accommodation, Kevin chose the homestay option, staying with a local family. This was so successful he has asked to stay with the same family when he moves over to CATS College Canterbury.

    Kevin's aim is to study the A level Business pathway at CATS and is looking forward to going to University in a couple of years.

  • Man


    Hong Kong

    “The teachers do not just teach us English, but they also understand how we are feeling – they are really supportive, they really care about you. Canterbury is good for shopping, and having London so close by is great."

  • Naomi



    "My English has improved a lot and I have made lots of friends here. There are many good teachers and everybody is friendly and kind. The School environment is homely.

    I chose Canterbury because I didn't want to be in a big city but wanted easy access to London. I will miss this School and I strongly recommend it."

  • Nataly



    I improved my English a lot! I started in Pre-Intermediate level and progressed to advanced. I had a lot of teachers in the time that I’ve been here and I think they are the best! They really care and help us with every question that we have. I also love the social programme and activity managers! I took a lot of trips over the weekends to Brighton, London, Cambridge, Oxford, Leeds Castle, Dover Castle so I feel like I’ve travelled all over and know Britain very well. And now my IELTS score will help me progress onto a Master’s degree in Manchester University. I live with a host family and I think that they are the most lovely host family that anybody can have!

  • Pattanan



    "The school provides everything a student wants and the teachers are very helpful, cheerful and kind.

    I chose Canterbury because it's a quiet town where I can concentrate on my studies. The environment here is suitable for studying in every way. The most important thing is that the staff care about what students think and listen to them."

  • Rahel



    Recommended by a friend, I really like Stafford House! There are many activities and our activity leaders are very cool and I’m always socialising and traveling all around. All my friends are usually coming with me and we have this extra opportunity to speak and practise our English. I’m staying with a host family and I really like them! I talk with them a lot when I go home and have dinner with them. They are great and taught me how to play Lawn Bowling - it’s so much fun! My teachers are all very different but I like all of them.

  • Seren



    I enjoyed all things about Stafford House. We have lots of activities and get to choose from many different options. Pub nights, museums, cinema days, pool competition. Every weekend we have a journey to another city - Cambridge, Oxford, London and Brighton - they are really unforgettable memories for us. I feel that I really improved my English at Stafford House - of course my main aim! Before I came here I didn’t trust my speaking and it was really hard to understand the English accent but now I can speak fluently and understand everything.

  • Tinn



    In my opinion teachers in Stafford House are very good because they can give us examples and whenever I have a question they really take time to explain and make sure I understand. I have 4 different teachers in 5 months that I’ve studied here. The classes are very useful and it was a great choice to go for intensive class. I’ve made great progress – I used to speak very slow and made a lot of mistakes, now I still make mistakes but I’m much more confident and have a wider vocabulary. Staff in the school is very friendly and provide a good service! It’s important because when you live in a foreign country you need a lot of help and staff is here to help us and resolve any issues. Social programme here is very useful because you can use the language that you learn in the classroom and you can practise a lot more.

  • Victoria



    Staff in the school is very helpful, I’ve just changed accommodation and now live in a student house with a lot of international students which is great because I’ve made a lot of friends. There are a lot of activities in the afternoon every day and we are having a great time here!


Our Courses

We have a range of programmes to suit all english levels. You can count on our experienced teachers to empower and guide you through your journey in English, they go the extra mile to immerse you in their language and culture.

Sample Timetables

The Essential programme consists of the Core Course in the morning.

9.00 - 10.30 CORE COURSE
10.50-12.20 CORE COURSE

Standard programmes consist of the Core Course in the morning plus one module. There will be no classes on Friday afternoon

Students will be allocated one afternoon module class
9.00 - 10.30 CORE COURSE
10.50-12.20 CORE COURSE
13.20-14.20                                                        MODULE 1 FREE AFTERNOON

Intensive programmes consist of the Core Course in the morning plus two modules. There will be no classes on Friday afternoon

Students will be allocated two afternoon module classes
9.00 - 10.30 CORE COURSE
10.50-12.20 CORE COURSE
13.20-14.20                                                        MODULE 1 FREE AFTERNOON
14.30-15.30                                                        MODULE 2

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