Founded in 1833 in the centre of Edinburgh, the school moved in 1930 to Colinton House and the ruins of Colinton Castle, 4 miles south-west of the city. It is set in 100 acres of parkland beside the Water of Leith and close to the Pentland Hills. Facilities include an indoor swimming pool, purpose-built music and IT centre, a well-equipped library. The school’s ethos is based on traditional values, encouraging self-reliance and independence, as well as respect for and tolerance of others. Pupils are pupils encouraged to strive to achieve the highest levels possible in all areas – firstly academic, then cultural, sporting, leadership, and simply living together as part of a community. The English curriculum is taught; academic standards are high and results consistently good. Music is particularly strong, art, design, drama and debating are also popular; there are regular joint plays with its sister school, St George’s. The school has long had a reputation for sporting excellence, including in rugby with over 60 Merchistonians having played at full international level. There is a flourishing CCF, Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Scheme, overseas expeditions and a wide range of co-curricular activities.