An introduction to the Trustees

Professor Doug Cowper (Chair)

Doug Cowper Doug Cowper is a Chair of Governors at Winchcombe Abbey Church of England Primary School (the academy was judged to be 'outstanding' by Ofsted in April 2017) . Doug has been a governor since February 2007.  He was the former vice-chair and chair of the finance and staffing committee...continue reading

Rob Stokes

Rob Stokes is a Chartered Accountant and Partner for Randall & Payne LLP.  He currently works as a Client Director and Senior Statutory Auditor. Rob works with a growing number of both standalone academies and multi academy trusts and is responsible for expanding the firm’s offering in respect of education and academies. In addition to organising Academy seminars, he attends EFA working group meetings and training session as well as working alongside the  Gloucestershire and Worcestershire Association of School Business Managers. Rob also maintains an audit presence with commercial clients and charities. continue reading

Dr Kenny Lynch

Dr Kenny Lynch is a Reader in Geography and the Course Leader for the University of Gloucestershire’s BA and BSc Geography programmes.  He graduated from the University of Aberdeen and was awarded a PhD from the University of Glasgow.

As a Reader, he leads research teams and develops research capacity in the University.  2007-2011 he served as Deputy Director of the University’s Pedagogic Research & Scholarship Institute which encouraged and developed research activity, particularly focusing on research-informed teaching.  continue reading

Rosemary Dick

Rosemary Dick has twenty four years’ experience as a Chartered Accountant, with diverse experience in practice and industry. For the past sixteen years she has worked part time as an assistant to the Finance Partner for Davies Mayers and Barnett. Her areas of responsibility include financial management, credit control and time ledger analysis. Prior to this, Rosemary worked as a part-time accountant for Devereux Renny Ltd where she prepared monthly management accountants, undertook bank reconciliations and undertook VAT returns.  She has previous worked for both BHR Group Ltd and Grant Thornton as a chief accountant, undertaking accounts preparation and audits...continue reading

The Venerable Phil Andrew

Stephen Lake

The Venerable Phil Andrew joined the Diocese as Archdeacon of Cheltenham in March 2017. The Archdeacon of Cheltenham has responsibility for the four deaneries on the eastern side of the Diocese covering Cheltenham, Tewkesbury, Cirencester, and the Cotswolds.

Before his appointment as Archdeacon of Cheltenham, Phil spent almost 11 years as Vicar of St Mary’s Church in Reigate, Surrey, where he was also a school governor and an honorary canon of Southwark Cathedral. Before training for ordained ministry at St John’s College in Nottingham Phil had a career as a Chartered Engineer, working in a number of management roles overseeing design and construction projects, particularly in the UK water industry.

Mervyn Cowdrey

Commander Mervyn Cowdrey’s considerable professional skill set comes primarily from a 40-year career in the Royal Navy, highlights of which includes being Head of Personnel for all UK and affiliated military forces in Afghanistan with an oversight of the administrative support and duty of care of all UK forces during this time. He has a comprehensive knowledge of project management, personnel administration and end-to-end logistics. During his naval career, he was responsible for the development of maritime logistics strategy and policy. This included building processes for managing the interface between military forces and Non-Government Organisations. In his capacity as a Naval Subject Matter Expert, Mervyn has experience of major MOD-related projects.  He was responsible for the strategic management and planning of training for 4000 new entrants into the Royal Navy...continue reading

Philip Perks

Phil Perks

Philip Perks has been a member of the Gloucester Diocesan Board of Education (DBE) for the past 12 years, including Vice-Chair of the Board for the past six years and Chair of the Strategy, Trusts, Buildings, Admissions and Governance Committee.  He retired as Head teacher of Hillview Primary School, Gloucester, five years ago and is currently a Bishop’s Visitor, Substitute Ex-Officio Governor at Highnam CE Primary Academy and Churchwarden of Holy Trinity, Tibberton....continue reading

The Reverend Ruth Fitter

The Reverend Ruth Fitter was born and brought up in Gloucester.  After having two children, Gareth and Graeme, early on in life she then went back to train as a teacher when they got older.  Ruth worked as a Primary School Teacher for ten years specialising in Early Years, before taking a role as a Family Support Worker for CAFCASS (Child and Family Court Advisory Support Service).   This involved working with families going through the court system to ascertain contact and residency orders and working with families in care and adoption.  Her role was mainly to work with the children to support them and to write assessment reports to court with recommendations about what was in the child’s best interest.  During her time with CAFCASS, Ruth was selected for training to Ordination and undertook this at WEMTC (West of England Ministerial Training Course), continuing to work at the same time as study. 

Ruth was ordained in July 2011 and served her curacy in the parish of St Peter’s, Leckhampton.  She was then appointed as Incumbent and Vicar of St Paul and St Stephen’s, Gloucester in September 2014.  She served as Chaplain to the Mother’s Union and to the Mayor of Gloucester during 2016-2017.  She is passionate about education and the part it plays in allowing all our children, whatever their background, to enable them to be the people God most intended them to be.  She loves reading, writing, visiting new places, entertaining and walking.  Ruth is also not only a mother and mother-in-law but a doting and besotted grandmother to Beatrix.

Mr Tim Brock

Tim Brock became a governor at St James’ Church of England Primary School Cheltenham in 2009. Tim chaired the Ethos Committee before becoming vice chair and has been Chair of Governors since 2014. The school became an academy and joined DGAT in 2017.

Tim is a proactive commercial business leader capable of turning strategy into action. Strong informal leadership skills and experience gained in both the public and private sectors allow him to demonstrate organizational agility and an ability to drive change by influencing and engaging others.

Tim works for Beam Suntory, the third largest spirits company in the world, and is accountable for delivering the global account strategy for their largest travel retail customer. Previous roles with Bass PLC, The Forestry Commission and as a Policy Advisor to The Under Secretary of State for Employment have helped to shape his career.  

Tim was born and educated in Worcester and now lives in Cheltenham with his wife and two children.  He is happiest when inspiring others and cherishes honesty, passion and integrity.