Governors' Profiles

Co-optative Governors: Mr N. Arnold, Mr C.M. Clapp (Chairman), Mr N.J. Cryer, Mr N.P. Hall, Mr B.J. Hurst-Bannister, Mr P.M. Johnson, Mrs M. MacNeice, Mr J.K. Macpherson, Mrs J.M.A. Mannix, Fr R. Maudsley, Rt Rev’d N. McKinnel, Mr I.R.G. Thomas, Dr M.E. Wood

Representative Governors: Mrs E.V. Heeley

Mr N Arnold BA (Hons), App Dip Crim (Cantab)

Formerly Chief Constable (acting) of Devon and Cornwall Constabulary. He has been a trained Gold Commander for Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Attacks and a member of the international Cadre of Hostage Negotiators. A former director of Courtenay Associates and advisor to the Ministry of Defence he is now a member of the Department of Health Advisory Group, a member of the North and East Devon Advisory Committee (responsible for the appointment and conduct of Magistrates in N&E Devon), a trustee and director of the Devon Community Foundation, of the Plymouth Drake Foundation and of the Community Council for Devon.

Mr C M Clapp FCA

Currently Chairman of the Governing Body. Educated at Blundell’s, a Chartered Accountant by profession and Licensed Insolvency Practitioner with Ernst & Young (1966 to 1999) and Senior Partner Baker Tilly, Bristol (2000 to 2006). Now retired but acting as a consultant to Veale Wasbrough Vizards Solicitors and formerly local Chairman for Clydesdale Bank in Bristol and Duncan Lawrie Private Banking in the south west. He is also a director of Thurlestone Estates Limited, a company that owns hotels in Devon and Cornwall. He is a Vice President of The Old Blundellian Club.

Mr N J Cryer BEng (Hons), MCIBSE

A chartered engineer by profession, with over 30 years’ experience in property and construction. Initially site based in contracting, Nick progressed into consultancy where he led high profile construction projects for some of the world's leading property companies including Canary Wharf Group, Hammerson Plc, Prudential and Lendlease, culminating in a position on the UK Board of WSP Group Plc. In 2002 Nick established a new regional office for global cost and project management consultants EC Harris LLP, leading consulting initiatives throughout the UK and Europe as a senior partner and latterly, in the role of Head of Commercial Development. In 2009 Nick formed the property and construction company Berkeley Place, focussing on the private residential market. In parallel, Nick attracted PE and VC investment to deliver his own development projects including a 135 bed student accommodation building combined with a Sainsbury's store in Plymouth. Nick is a trustee of various charitable institutions supporting their property and investment decision process.

Mr N P Hall MA FCA

Currently Chairman of the Finance & General Purposes Committee. Educated at The Haberdashers’ Aske’s School, Elstree and Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge, he qualified as a Chartered Accountant with Price Waterhouse in 1980. He joined the fashion retailer The Burton Group PLC in 1984 and undertook a wide variety of financial and general management roles before becoming Finance Director of the company, by now renamed Arcadia Group PLC, in 1997. Following the sale of the company in 2002 he has pursued a portfolio career as a non-executive director of several public and private companies. He is currently a non-executive director of law firm Michelmores LLP and is also a Director of Exeter Rugby Group Limited, the Exeter Chiefs. He is married to Jill, has two grown up daughters, and has lived near Butterleigh, Cullompton since 1998.

Mrs E V Heeley BA (Hons), Cert Ed

Educated at Dorking Grammar School and Exeter University with a career spent in education as an English teacher – eight years at The King’s School, Grantham, (boys’ grammar school with 800 boys) followed by twenty years at St Aubyn’s Prep School, one year of which was when St Aubyn’s belonged to Blundell’s. Retired in 2001. Former Blundell’s parent and past chair of Governors of Cullompton Community College, (mixed comprehensive of over 700 students). Foundation Governor of the Children First Federation and Churchwarden at Sampford Peverell.

Mr B J Hurst-Bannister MA

Currently Vice Chairman of the Governing Body and Chairman of the Finance and General Purposes Committee. He is a non-executive director of Talbot Underwriting, Price Forbes, The Standard Club, and Charles Taylor Plc, and was previously Chairman of the Lloyd’s Market Association and sat on the Council of Lloyd’s. He has a degree in Modern History from Oxford University and is an Associate of the Chartered Insurance Institute and past President of the Insurance Institute of London.

Mr P M Johnson MA FRSA

Currently Chairman of the Education Committee. Retired in September 2008 after 32 years working in independent education. He was a teacher, coach and Housemaster at Radley, Headmaster of Wrekin College (1991-1998) and Headmaster of Millfield (1998-2008). He was educated at Bec Grammar School and Oxford University where he gained an Army Scholarship, following which he spent five years as an officer in the Parachute Brigade. He has been a keen sportsman all his life and played rugby and cricket to a high level. He is a Privilege Member of the Rugby Football Union, an educational advisor to the London Chamber Orchestra, a trustee of Wells Cathedral, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and a governor of two other schools. He is passionate about music, wine, gardening and books.

Mrs M MacNeice BCL, LLB, LLM, Barrister, BL

A barrister by profession – practising under her maiden name Martha Maher – with almost 30 years' experience at the chancery commercial bar. She was educated in Ireland at University College, Cork and then at Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge and the Inns of Court School of Law. She was called to the bar of England and Wales in 1987 and has practised from the Western Circuit with chambers in Bristol. She is a member of the Honourable Society of Inner Temple and the Chancery Bar Association and has reported cases to her credit including leading cases in the spheres of partnership law and company/insolvency law. She has lectured widely on company/commercial law topics including most recently to the Channel Islands Law Societies. She is vice-chair of the Disciplinary Committee of a leading accountancy body. She is married to a lawyer, Rory, and has children at schools in the South West. She is passionate about horses and has the distinction of being the first lady barrister to have won the Bar Point to Point. Her extra-curricular interests also include gardening, poetry and of course, family.

Mr J K Macpherson B.Ed

Currently Chairman of the Preparatory School Committee. Educated at Hurstpierpoint College and the University of Exeter, after some industrial experience he entered the education profession. He taught Business Studies, Economics, English and French on his way to becoming Headmaster of The Downs School, Bristol and of King’s Hall School, Taunton. He has also been a careers advisor and athletics and rugby coach. He is a former Justice of the Peace, Inspector for Independent Schools, Chairman of the South-West region of the Independent Association of Preparatory Schools and Blundell’s parent.

Mrs J M A Mannix MA

Educated at Blundell’s and University of St Andrews achieving an M.A. in French. She has worked for Oxfam, NSPCC, and Wadham College, Oxford in Development Director and fundraising roles and has undertaken further development and fundraising projects for Wadham College, Brasenose College and the Ashmolean Museum. She has lived in both South America and South Africa and is fluent in French and Spanish.

Fr R Maudsley

Currently employed as a full time Education Officer with responsibility for fifty of the one hundred and thirty church schools in the Diocese of Exeter. He has been Head Teacher of three church schools, two in Hertfordshire and one in Wiltshire. His last headship was of a large community school in North London serving a wide multicultural community. Alongside this headship experience he has supervised students and lectured on aspects of primary education at Middlesex University. As an Ofsted trained Inspector and School Improvement Partner he has tried to balance the demands of academic achievement alongside the development of the whole child. As a trained S.I.A.S. inspector he has carried out Statutory Inspections of Anglican Schools in the London, Chelmsford and Truro Dioceses. He trained for the priesthood later in life and was ordained in St Paul’s Cathedral by the Bishop of London serving his curacy in North London before moving to Devon in 2009. He supported St Andrew’s Tiverton during its interregnum and is now working with a group of rural churches in mid Devon.

The Right Reverend Nick McKinnel

Studied Law at Cambridge and Theology at Oxford prior to ordination to a London parish in 1980. Subsequently Chaplain at Liverpool University, Rector of Hatherleigh and Rector of St Andrew’s Church, Plymouth. Made Bishop of Crediton in 2012. Bishop of Plymouth since 2015. He has been a school Governor in primary and independent schools for over 25 years, is currently on the Board of Governors at the University of St Mark & St John, Plymouth, and has been a trustee of Allied Schools as well as Medic Malawi and various church charities. He has acted as a Chaplain to the police, RNLI, 29 Commando Regt., ex-services associations and Plymouth College. He is married to Jan and they have four children, six grandchildren and live in Plymouth.

Mr I R G Thomas AFPS

Educated at Universität Düsseldorf and the University of York prior to qualifying as a Chartered Wealth Manager. He has spent most of his career at large financial services companies including AXA, Fidelity Investments and JP Morgan, where he was responsible for the Nordic region and lived in Stockholm. More recently, he co-founded a pension and employee benefit consultancy, which operates primarily in the independent schools sector. He is married to Anna and they have two teenage children.

Dr M E Wood MA

Currently a Senior Lecturer in Organic Chemistry at the University of Exeter. He graduated in Chemistry (BA 1986, MA 1989) from the University of Oxford (Balliol College) and subsequently undertook PhD studies in Organic Chemistry at Oxford, under the supervision of Professor Sir Jack Baldwin. After graduating and a short period of postdoctoral research, he was appointed to the position of "GlaxoWellcome Fellow and Tutor in Organic Chemistry", a joint appointment with St Catherine's College (where he served on the Governing Body for six years) and the Dyson Perrins Laboratory, both University of Oxford. In 1996 he joined the former Department of Chemistry at the University of Exeter as a Lecturer in Organic Chemistry, transferring to the newly formed School of Biosciences in 2005, where he was subsequently promoted to Senior Lecturer. In addition to teaching, he has maintained active research in synthetic, mechanistic and biological organic chemistry and is a Chartered Chemist (CChem) and Member of the Royal Society of Chemistry (MRSC).