Jonathan Ash-Edwards : Chair of Trustees

Jonathan Ash-Edwards

Chair of Trustees

A former Warden Park student, Jonathan has served in school governance roles since 2007, including helping establish the Trust. His school governance experience now includes working to support other governors and trustees across the country. He has experience running small businesses and is Leader of Mid Sussex District Council, where he is responsible for giving strategic direction and leadership to the local authority.

Experience includes:

• Strategic, non-executive leadership and financial oversight of public services

• Chairing governing bodies, including involvement in multiple Ofsted inspections judging governance as effective

• Appointed by the Department for Education as a National Leader of Governance, supporting chairs of governors in other schools

• Awarded a contract by the DfE to deliver governor/trustee training and development

Esther Gunter :

Esther Gunter

Legal recruitment manager and trainer with a broad commercial skills set and management experience. Experience includes:

• analysing individuals’ potential and skills

• coaching and supporting staff and clients/candidates to identify career desires and support them through interview preparation

• advising businesses on employer branding, candidate attraction, interview processes and recruitment market intelligence

• nurturing talent, developing graduate or “first job” staff to be successful innovative employees

Hamish Hill :

Hamish Hill

Hamish works in independent practice as a Clinical Psychologist, focussing on therapeutic work with children, young people and their families. Experience includes:

• Therapeutic work as a Clinical Psychologist specialising in working with children, adolescents and families in both public (NHS, NSW Health) and private/independent practice settings in Australia and the UK

• Training and experience across a range of evidence-based therapies

• Experience in teaching, research and service development projects

• Working therapeutically with looked-after and adopted children and their families

Claire Homer : Vice-Chair

Claire Homer


Director of local business. Experienced Governor and Chair of the governing board during Northlands Wood’s conversion to academy status and joining the Trust. Experience includes:

• running a successful local business (broad commercial skills)

• leading and managing teams

• developing talent, including apprentices

Joelle Packham :

Joelle Packham

Extensive career in marketing and communications (working internationally) for a global engineering and energy firm, including focussing on recruiting communications and graduate recruitment. BA in French and Communication and an MA in Media and Communications. Broad commercial skills. Experience also includes:

• specialising in marketing and communications

• introducing internships and work experience placements within business

• recruiting and mentoring young talent

Jenny Pearman :

Jenny Pearman

Head of Client Services for a London based Software Services Company (Broadcast and Music industry). Broad commercial skill set. Experience includes:

• managing complex relationships across a wide variety of clients, balancing the clients’ needs against the company’s policy and growth

• assisting in growing a business from a start-up with one UK client to a globally recognised solutions provider that is driving the industry standards in an ever changing and diverse market

• developing teams and working with a diverse range of people (from the creators of programming and music through to legal and technical teams effecting business change and ensuring compliance obligations are met)

Roger Tapping :

Roger Tapping

Lead (Reporting Inspector) for the Independent School Inspectorate. Holds the National Professional Qualification for Headship. Former teacher (36 year teaching career) in non SLT schools and Chartered Geographer. Experience includes:

• management of Departments (including managing Learning Support)

• management and analysis of performance data

• training in Compliance, Safer Recruitment, Child Protection, Prevent, Safety Management on Educational Visits

• former Chair of the WPSA Pastoral and Safeguarding Committee

Jeff Thompson :

Jeff Thompson

Retired head of the consulting business for a London accounting firm and a Governor with 14 years of experience in primary and secondary education. Experience includes:

business strategy, financial control and operational management
leading diverse teams in complex and highly regulated environments
Chair of Governors focusing on growth and development of rural primary schools
financial Governor focusing on risk management, budget planning and project funding

Phil Todd :

Phil Todd

Chartered Engineer and Managing Director for a pioneering Building Services Engineering Company with offices in England and Ireland. Broad commercial and management skills. Experience includes:

• managing teams and projects

• designing and delivering world class schools and education facilities

• delivering STEM support

• advising on procurement, Health and Safety management and improvements, development of ICT facilities and support