at Cockermouth School

Accounting Officer:          Dr R P Petrie

Chief Financial Officer:    Mrs S Bamforth

Chair of Trustees:            Mr P Moody -

Trustees:                           All Governors

Chair of Members:            Mrs S Moses

Members:                          Mr L Cockcroft, Mr A Graham, Mrs S Moses, Dr D Rhodes, Mr L Studholme

Cockermouth School Governing Body


Co-Opted Governors

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Richard Askew

I am a Co-opted Governor at Cockermouth School and am the Link Governor for the Mathematics department. I was educated at the school and have continued to live and work locally since. Now a Chartered Accountant and Lead Partner of Armstrong Watson's Workington office, I have a passion for supporting and advising owner managed businesses. I am married with three young children, whom I expect will also be educated at the school. In my spare time I enjoy playing and watching football.

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Lesley Bowen

I joined the Governing Body as a Community Governor early in 2015 and became a Co-opted Governor when the school converted to an Academy. I have experience of working as a Parent Governor at a local primary school and am looking forward to using my professional and commercial experience to assist and support the work of the Governing Body at Cockermouth School. I have one daughter in the school, and am Head of HR Operations at Sellafield.


Helen Connolly

I joined the Governing Body in February 2018. I have held leadership roles as a specialist in communications and engagement in industries that are highly-focused on safety, performance, under public scrutiny, sensitive to politics and public funding. These roles have included setting a strategic vision, performance management, skills development, stakeholder management and budgetary responsibilities as well as the delivery of communication and engagement programmes. Outside work, I am interested in languages and drama. I speak fluent French having lived and worked in Paris for many years and been a member of improvisational theatre groups.

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Bob Crozier

I served as a Community Governor for several years at Cockermouth School, and am now happy to continue serving on the Governing Body as a Co-opted Governor, supporting Key Stage 5. I am married with two children who have been through the school. I work as a qualified Accountant plus some IT projects and am based mainly in Brampton. I attend Christ Church in Cockermouth. My hobbies include fell walking and railways.

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Sue Moses

I have been a Governor at Cockermouth School for 16 years. I am currently Link Governor to the MFL department and a member of Cockermouth School and Community Association (CSCA). I am also link governor for Pupil Premium. I retired from secular employment (insurance brokering and administration) in January 2012 which leaves me more time for my hobby of fly-fishing and walking the fells. I have lived in the Cockermouth area for the whole of my life (educated at Cockermouth Grammar School) and have a passion for this place and its people. I am proud to support the school and help to maintain its ethos: aspire – enjoy – include – respect – community.


Chris Nattress

I joined the Governing Body in February 2018. I have worked in education for over 25 years (primarily Further Education), allowing me to build up a detailed understanding of the operating environment for schools and colleges, and the nature of the many challenges we face. I have much experience in the workings of Boards of Governors and Corporations, having been active on school boards previously, and have a very active interest in how secondary schools can best work within the challenges all educational institutions currently face in providing the best education possible, whilst fulfilling their role as important community assets.

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Duncan Potts

I am currently a teacher at Cockermouth School, having been at the school since 2014, and became a Co-opted Governor in January 2017. Over the years I have taught in a range of different schools across the country including ones in Manchester, Cambridge and London where I fulfilled roles such as Head of Geography and Head of Citizenship. I am a Head of Year in Key Stage 4 whilst also teaching Maths and Psychology. Before entering teaching I ran my own business, travelled extensively and worked as the sports secretary at the University of Sheffield. I enjoy ultra-distance fell running and rugby league.

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Alan Rankin

I have been a Governor at Cockermouth School since January 2016. I am married with two daughters who currently attend Cockermouth School. I work in the HR team at Sellafield, having been involved in a broad range of HR Management roles for over 25 years in both nuclear and manufacturing industries. I am also Chair of Governors at Arlecdon Primary School, and am Chair of the Cumbria Police and Crime Commissioner’s Ethics and Integrity Panel. Cockermouth school is an integral, valued and vital part of the local community and its continued growth, development and success is fundamental in supporting and providing the best of opportunities for all students. I have a specific interest and role within the Governing Body in Safeguarding, SEND issues, and Health, Safety and Security.


Andrew Ward

Having spent thirty three years in education I am really pleased to be starting a new chapter as a Co-opted Governor at Cockermouth School. I have recently retired from full-time education, having spent the last seven years as a teacher of mathematics at Cockermouth. My association with the school, however, is longer than that as both my sons attended the school and my wife has also worked here. I hope to use my experience to help the school in its continuing journey in providing a truly world class education for all its students. My particular area of interest/expertise is in ensuring all students achieve their potential through an imaginative curriculum and through excellent teaching. I was a very proud member of the teaching staff and I am looking forward immensely to representing the school in the Cockermouth community.


Parent Governors

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Jutta Devenish

I became a Parent Governor in January 2017. I have travelled the world as part of my work with an international development agency and moved back to the UK with my family after spending an extended time In Vienna, Austria. I enjoy living in Cumbria and am involved in our local community through various activities including volunteering at the Junior Tri-LakeIand club. I bring 20 years' experience in Marketing and Communications, including for an international IB school in Austria; Flextronics, Dynegy, the University of Westminster (Diplomatic Academy) and as a Business and Marketing lecturer for international universities in Vienna and Hungary. I am Managing Director for Zeitgeist Communication Ltd. My passion is to see secondary education as a partnership between parents and the school and to help our young people prepare for the future, with realism, room to dream and the desire to make a positive difference in the world we will hand on to them.


Marrie Shepherd

I became a Parent Governor at Cockermouth School in May 2018. I am mother to two children who attend Cockermouth School, one in lower school and one in Sixth Form. I originate from Yorkshire and have lived in Cumbria for 10 years. I have a BSc Hons Degree in Psychology from Huddersfield University, having returned to further education when my oldest child was 3 years old and totally enjoyed the challenge and experience of working part time, bringing up a small child whilst completing a full time degree. I am currently training in healthcare, providing support and continued independence for elderly people so they can continue to live at home. I am passionate about what a school community can bring to each and every individual pupil: stability, support, a sense of belonging and those all-important lifeskills that prepare each pupil for adulthood and their productive working role within society. I am equally passionate about Mental Health. We live in an ever-changing society facing extra pressures and stresses, both for adults and more importantly children. The introduction of social media has not only brought positives to our lives, but it has also brought negatives. I therefore support the maintenance of a strong sense of community, advocating respect and tolerance to everyone, providing the best possible happy/healthy environment for the whole school community. I believe that every pupil deserves the opportunity to reach their full potential and every teacher reaches their full potential in passing on valuable educational skills and knowledge.

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Paul Moody

I have been a governor at Cockermouth School since 2013. I was elected Chair of the Governing Body in July 2017. I have four children, all of whom are in the school at the moment. I am keen to support the school and always want to know what is going on. I am happy for parents, staff or students to contact me if they have any feedback or suggestions for the Governing Body. Our family moved to Cumbria in 2007 from Yorkshire and we have settled in Dearham (I am also Vice Chair of Dearham Primary School). I have worked in a wide variety of roles within the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. Covering roles such as operational delivery, project management, governance, stakeholder management and policy work enables me to bring a wide variety of different management skills to the Governing Body.

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Kate Parry MBE

With two children currently in the school, I became a parent governor in January 2017. For the last 20 years I have worked in the culture and heritage sector, managing Wordsworth House for the National Trust in Cockermouth and then the town’s arts centre - the Kirkgate Centre. I am currently Manager of the Cumbria Museum Consortium, working with museums across the county. I offer skills in fundraising, community engagement and arts project management. I believe that experiencing cultural activities of any kind makes a long-term difference to the wellbeing of young people and I hope to support and further the school’s excellent record in this area.


Staff Governor

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Paul Heap

I have been at Cockermouth School since 2004 as the Premises Manager. I returned to the Lakes after living all over the UK and as far afield as Australia. I have two children, both of whom came to the school. I took up the role as a Staff Governor in September 2013. I’m a keen outdoor person and love all sports. I currently play, coach and umpire hockey during the winter months and run Cockermouth Academicals cricket team in the WACCA League during the summer. I am also one of Cockermouth’s Retained Fire Fighters.