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Visas and Immigration

What you need to know about entering the UK to study

UK immigration rules are changing as a result of Brexit – the full details have not yet been announced.  We will update this page as soon as we are able.  If you have any queries, please email

DO I NEED A VISA or other permission?

Read below for details about the different immigration routes and answers to some common questions.  If you are unsure if you need a visa or whether to see a border control officer on arrival, please check your eligibility here.


Under UK Government immigration rules, from 2021 to come for the One Year School you must have the right to study in the UK for longer than 6 months.  The most common routes are either:

  • be a British citizen; or
  • be an Irish citizen; or
  • hold a UK Ancestry Visa; or
  • have a Tier 5 Youth Mobility Visa – currently available for nationals aged 18-30 of Australia, Canada, Japan, Monaco, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Republic of Korea or Taiwan, and British overseas citizens, British overseas territories citizens, and British nationals (overseas). The UK Government has indicated that other countries including EU countries may be added to this list – please check here

From 2021, other international students may study with us for up to 6 months using the Visitor route.  That means you may study with us for all of Winter School (22 weeks), or all of Spring School (10 weeks), but not both.

The UK Student Visa is not available to students studying at Capernwray. 


From 1 December 2020 provisions for study contained within the current Short Term Study rules and guidance will instead be divided between the Visitor route and a different Short-term Student route.


The UK intends that from 1 December 2020 visitors from EU/EEA countries and Switzerland will be able to study for up to 6 months without requiring a visa but further details on what you will need to do are still awaited.  We will update this page as information becomes available.


Currently, short term students must not use the eGates. At the port of entry, rather than following the eGates signs, you should join a queue to see a Border Force Officer. As a short term student you must see an officer in order to get a stamp in your passport. This stamp gives you the permission needed for your studies and you will need to obtain this from a Border Force Officer every time you enter the UK during your course. If you enter via the eGates you will enter as a tourist and so not have the permission required to study at Capernwray.  You will be required to leave the UK and re-enter to obtain the correct stamp.  


Please do not enter the UK via the Republic of Ireland (Dublin) because ROI is part of the Common Travel Area with the UK and if you enter the UK via Ireland, you will receive an Irish immigration entry stamp but you will not see a UK Border Force Officer and so you will not be able to receive the stamp in your passport to enter as a Short Term Student.  You will be required to leave the UK and re-enter to obtain the correct stamp.


Currently, students from certain countries, i.e. visa nationals, are required to apply for, and obtain, a short-term study visa before travelling to the UK. Information on the application, including the required supporting documents, is outlined on the Home Office website. The acceptance letter from Capernwray should be submitted as a supporting document with your visa application.


This immigration route currently has the following restrictions:

  • You cannot take employment in the UK (including part-time or full-time vacation employment);
  • You cannot undertake a work placement/internship (paid/unpaid) as part of the course of study;
  • You cannot work on a self-employed basis in the UK or be involved in business activities;
  • You must leave the UK within 30 days after the end of your study period or before your leave expires, whichever is earlier;
  • You cannot extend your stay in the UK;
  • You must demonstrate you have the funds to support yourself during your studies in the UK.

If you have questions about visas or permission to enter the UK, please email

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