@kenyancowgirl, thanks for your response. I agree with all you said re additional expenses. It is definitely something to seriously consider.
@Ladymuck, you're an absolute star for taking the time to reply in such detail. I can assure you that her scholarship at RR was 80% with a 20% bursary. The CHS is more of an even split. I have kids in the indie sector myself (currently taking the North London consortium exams) so understand how costs rack up. It's obviously a lot more for secondary school. It is of concern that she might somehow feel inferior to others if she misses out on everything and doesn't have all the latest gadgets and to some degree I will help but frankly there's absolutely no way she'll be 'keeping up with the Jones'. You have given us lots to think about and for that I am grateful. I live quite a distance away so have no local knowledge of the area but i offered to ask the questions on here. We are a lot luckier down here with all our choices particularly for girls schools.
I think there might be more bursary girls at CHS and while I know my niece to be a confident child who takes no prisoners I don't want her ever to feel in anyway less than adequate simply because they are not well off.
I have offered to buy uniforms etc and we'll probably take it from there if we don't, as hoped, get one of the grammars she passed. I just wish RR was better academically as it seems to tick more of the boxes. If you're paying for private education it should be a more holistic offering encompassing great education and fantastic extracurricular.
I'll pass the message on and we'll see what the future brings. My feeling is that if she gets offered either of the grammar schools then thank God however if not and the alternative is one of the local comps then we just have to bite bullet and let her go to one of these fee paying schools.
Thanks again to you both. At least she has got admission in some schools, I'm still fraught with worry at the outcome of the interviews and pending interviews my daughter has and we don't find out till end of Feb, agonising!!