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Mrs Victoria Walmsley- Chair of Governors 

I was elected onto the Governing Body of St Paul’s in April 2018 as Parent Governor and more recently was appointed by the PCC as a Foundation Governor. I am proud and honoured to be Chair of Governors from April 2024. I have two daughters, one who attended St Paul’s and is now in secondary school and the younger one is in the Juniors. My own children thoroughly enjoy school and I know first hand St Paul’s provides an excellent environment for our children to thrive. In my professional capacity I am a Marketing Manager working for a company predominantly servicing the Education sector, working with schools throughout the country.


My family and I attend St Paul’s Church and I am also an active member of the school PTFA helping to organise and run fundraising events to benefit the school and church community. I am honoured to be part of the Governing Body and hope I bring a positive yet critical parent view that can help to aid our schools continued growth.

Ms. Jill Kershaw - Associate Member

I have had the privilege of working in education for over twenty years, including two very happy years at St Paul’s. I have experience of being on a senior leadership team, I am a qualified special educational needs co-ordinator, and I am currently working as an advisory teacher for speech and language with the Local Authority. This role involves visiting a wide variety of local settings from nurseries to high schools, and has provided a fascinating insight into the education system. I am a skilled communicator, and am experienced in liaising with professionals to ensure the best outcomes for children. I am passionate about inclusion, and believe that school should be a place where all children can flourish. 


I love the way St Paul’s provides all children with opportunities to develop their creativity and resilience, and I also appreciate the strong sense of family fostered in the school. The local community is very important to me: I have spent my own childhood in the area. I attend church, and am keen to build on the strong links between school, church and surrounding area.  I am delighted to use my skills and experience to support and develop the school’s vision and ethos further. 

Mrs Nicola Martin - Local Authority Governor

I have worked in Lancashire since 1997 as a primary teacher, Senior Manager and Consultant.  I joined the Lancashire Literacy team in May 2004 after several years as a Leading Literacy teacher and Subject Leader, and have been involved in co-developing and presenting the very popular boys' writing projects in KS2 within PAN Lancashire and beyond.

I have a particular interest in the use of film to develop literacy and have gained Lead Practitioner status with the British Film Institute. In 2009, I was awarded NPQH and in 2010 became an accredited Local Consultant for Improvement in Stronger Management Systems and Support for Writing.

In 2012, I was appointed by DFE for leading phonics in Lancashire with an outstanding accreditation. I also specialise in reading development, improving writing, boys' writing and is the Lancashire Lead Moderator for KS1 and KS2.

I am excited to be working with Hoddlesden St Paul's and cannot wait to continue the good work in curriculum design. I am looking forward to further developing the school with my fellow members and ensure the school continues to flourish.

Mr Christopher Dugdale - Headteacher 

I have been the Headteacher of Hoddlesden St Paul's Church of England Primary School since September 2016 and I am very proud of the academic and spiritual journey the school is on. Prior to this, I was the Deputy and Acting Headteacher in a one form entry primary school in the neighbouring authority of Lancashire (Area East). 


I graduated from St Martin's College in 2006 and have taught in a variety of school settings across Lancashire. During 2008/10 I was able to support a Fylde based hospitality company and general manage a number of medium to large businesses, along with successfully supporting a large redevelopment application and bid. From September 2017 to 2019, I represented Primary Headteachers on the Local Authorities Employment and Skills Board, mapping and implementing opportunities for Career Related Learning. 


In 2020/21 I was elected as the President of NAHT Blackburn with Darwen, my role is as a representative for the National Union. One of my main roles is representing the NAHT view on the local SACRE board and I sit as the Vice Chair of this Board. From 2022, I have the privilege of representing headteachers in the North West on Ofsted's Headteachers Referencing Panel. 


I have had the privilege of coordinating Teaching and Learning improvement across our cluster of schools, with huge improvements in attainment, teaching & learning and developing collaborative approaches with our teachers. I am extremely proud of St Paul's achievements and I am excited to continue to be part of and lead an effective and innovative team. 

Mrs Victoria Brown- Parent Governor 

I am a parent at Hoddlesden St Paul’s Primary, my son is currently in Reception and I also have a daughter who is due to start in Preschool in 2023. Even though I am new to the community of St Pauls’ I want the school to build on its outstanding OFSTED rating and continue to improve and develop for years to come.


I have over 12 years’ experience as a primary school teacher and I am an EYFS specialist. Alongside my teaching experience I have spent two years as an assistant headteacher of a church school where I have been able to attend governor meetings and gain experience and understanding of the important role that governors play in the strategic development of a school. This has given me experience of organisational leadership of a church school including writing and evaluating school improvement plans, writing and updating policies, safeguarding, OFSTED inspections, analysing data to identify gaps and highlight target groups, managing staff and being involved in staff recruitment.


I understand that role the of a governor is not only to support the school and its dedicated staff but also to challenge decisions when necessary and I am not afraid to ask difficult questions on behalf of the children and families of St Paul’s.

Mr Jason Newsham- Foundation  

This role is one of passion and pride, due to my previous role within school as a class teacher and SENCO from September 2017. I was extremely fortunate to undertake these roles until April 2019, where I was then able to be seconded to a school in Lancashire. Due to the outstanding leadership and school improvement learning I gained from St Paul's, I was able to continue this and support another school with their school improvement journey.


Hoddlesden St Paul's CE Primary School is an incredible place and where children and staff (once like me) can thrive and flourish to become the best they can be. As an Assistant Headteacher of a large inner city primary school, I am able to draw on my day to day experiences to help support the continued growth and success of St Paul's. My experience in school improvement has and will continue to inspire my role as a governor at this wonderful school. As a Dad of 2 young children, the church school family focus is something I am extremely passionate about and I am pleased to be able to continue to be part of this family, now as a governor. 


Mrs Jocelyn Yates- Foundation 

I have worked in Education for 17 years and I have advised for SEMH difficulties in children across the Borough. My current role is Inclusion Centre Manager within a secondary school.


I live in the village and have 2 children, 1 who attend St Paul' in Year 4 and my eldest has just transitioned to secondary school. I feel very lucky to have the opportunity to be part of this excelling school family.  I really enjoy my role as a foundation governor here at St Paul’s and having the opportunity to support in the area of SEND and work closely with SEN co-ordinator is fantastic. There is a true passion for meeting the needs of all children within St Paul’s. I will do my upmost to support the staff and the families within it, in order to achieve the best outcomes for our outstanding school.


Mrs Jade Grime- Foundation 

I have been involved in education for twelve years and have held many roles including: Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator, Key Stage Lead and deputy designated safeguarding lead.  I have had the experience of working in many different mainstream primary settings but currently have the privilege of working in Alternative Provision teaching children with behavioural difficulties who have been excluded for mainstream schools.


I also represent the Church PCC at our United Parish of Hoddlesden St Paul’s and St Barnabas.  Both my daughters attend the school and are flourishing in there education – I love the school and I am looking forward to helping in which ever capacity that I can as a foundation governor.


Mrs Laura Bradley -  Staff Governor  

I am a dedicated staff member at St Paul's school and enjoy a number of fulfilling roles as Assistant Headteacher, Curriculum Lead and Science Subject Lead. Becoming a member of the Governing Body has added a new dimension to my role within school and created further opportunities to make a difference. I enjoy and thrive on the challenges that come with every aspect of school life and am passionate about high quality education and each and every child reaching their full potential.


Rev Ben Marston -  Ex-Officio

I grew up in a village in Lancashire and started attending church regularly aged seven, partly thanks to an invitation from the local vicar. After university I spent ten years working for a charity helping students discover and grow in Christian faith. Because of my own story and experience, I am passionate about making sure church is engaging and enjoyable. A real highlight of my week is being in our local schools, helping young people explore who Jesus is and what difference He could make to their lives, and I am delighted to be doing that not far from where I first discovered that for myself.   


Mr Matt Berry -  Foundation

I have worked in a variety of educational settings, delivering music in classrooms over the past 15 years. I have a passion for all things creative and see such subjects as vital to a well-rounded education and, above all, essential to a child’s wellbeing. As well as working in schools, I have worked closely with local authority young people’s services in Blackburn with Darwen and Bolton, targeting hard to reach young people in youth settings and alternative provision schools. I am a strong advocate for inclusivity and feel that no child should be left behind. I am also lucky enough to have two children at St Paul's and have seen them grow in confidence and benefit from the Christian values and ethos that St Paul’s delivers consistently. It is an honour to be part of the community and family that St Pauls bring


Mrs Claire Warner -  Foundation Governor  

I run a company that helps charities and nonprofit organisations to focus on and improve colleague wellbeing and organisational culture.  The realisation of how much better I was able to perform at work, at home, as a parent - everywhere really - when I prioritised my own wellbeing, rather than when tired, stretched and stressed, was a big learning for me. And generally is for the people I work with.


I've spent my whole career in the nonprofit sector and before setting up my own company, I held senior leadership roles in some amazing organisations across the North West.  My day job involves working between colleague teams and with CEOs and Senior Leadership teams. Some of my work is in the area of coaching - helping individuals and small groups through challenge or change; and some of it involves projects that span entire teams or organisations, helping them to tackle challenges that cause 'unwellbeing'.


I have found that as someone who is impartial, who understands what it is like in being in the sector, and whose only focus is on change for good, I am able to ask questions that help lead to solutions, I hold difficult conversations more easily than others, I am able to deliver feedback positively and productively, and I can see all sides in a discussion.


I am also committed to helping organisations value and look after their colleagues.  The wellbeing of the people who we rely on to support, nurture, educate and 'round' our children has got to be of interest to us as parents and carers.

These, in addition to the governance experience I have gained on the PCC of our former church in Bradshaw, and as a Trustee at Forget Me Not Children’s Hospice, are skills and experiences that I am able to put to good use as a governor on the Governing Body at school. 

Start children off on the way they should go and even when they are old they will not turn from it.
- Proverbs 22:6