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Learn@ MAT

Learn@ MAT




Andrea Wills

Chair, Board of Trustees 

Interim Chair of Soundwell Academy Council

Quality and Standards Committee 


Andrea worked for the BBC for 25 years, starting as a journalist with Radio Bristol and then making television programmes for the Natural History Unit and Bristol Features.   As Chief Adviser, Editorial Policy she was one of the BBC’s most senior editorial managers and in 2005 revised its Editorial Guidelines.   

Andrea is a highly respected and skilled investigator of broadcast complaints and was an independent editorial adviser to the BBC Trust.  She is an experienced broadcast trainer and has worked for the BBC’s College of Journalism and spent a year in Sydney in 2012 launching the ABC’s Editorial Leaders Programme.

Andrea is on the Appeals Panel for the Video Standards Council Rating Board.


Gus Grimshaw

Vice Chair, Board of Trustees 

Committee: Audit Finance and Resource Committee

Interim Chair of Brook Academy Council  

Gus is retired and enjoying life back in the Cotswolds with his  wife and two dogs.  He is a very proud parent of two sons and grandfather to five grandchildren. A passionate follower of sport and his durability is illustrated by being a Bath Rugby season ticket holder for 50 years.  Gus became a Trustee of learn@MAT in 2018 after spending five very enlightening year “farming” and running a tourist business in North Devon.  

The majority of his working life was as a teacher and then Headteacher in schools in Bath, South Gloucestershire and Bristol.  During his 30 years of Headship experience he was fortunate to be part of a Building Schools for the Future scheme, a mini Education Action Zone, the BEON project (a scheme to introduce IT and the intranet into the classroom) and a School of Creativity!  Gus was also privileged to be seconded to work at the Local Authority on developing Federation and Trusts to encourage and promote partnership working and executive leadership across schools.  His school was one of the first in Britain to host a breakfast club, a forest school and a Children’s University (extended activities on a Saturday).  

Gus has the leadership experience of  being involved in four new builds and as a founding member of a free school.  Throughout his career Gus believed in parental engagement and partnership working  and the value of education in regenerating communities.

His passion for Learn@ MAT  is in its desire ensuring all young people are given the best opportunity to succeed in life.


Ray Moorcroft

Chair of Lansdown Park Academy Council

Chair, Audit, Finance and Resources Committee 


Married to his wife Jan. He has two daughters and six grandchildren. Retired in 2013 after 40 years service with an International Company based in Bristol where he gained a depth of financial and procurement acumen.

Now enjoys playing snooker, holidays, going to the gym and child minding.

Ray is the Chair of Lansdown Academy Council


Eileen Flynn (M Ed 'Raising Attainment in Inner City Schools')

Safeguarding Trustee 

Chair, Quality and Standards and Chairs Committee

Chair of St Matthias Academy Council

 Eileen has been a qualified teacher since 1978 gained her Master’s Degree in ‘Raising Attainment In Inner City Schools‘at the University of the West of England and has taught chemistry and science in secondary school for almost 40 years. For the last 3 years Eileen has been teaching in a primary school. Eileen was on the leadership team of an inner city comprehensive school for over a decade.

The Director of Inclusion and the designated Safeguarding Officer. Eileen has managed  Special Educational Needs , ‘English as an additional language’ department and learning mentors. Eileen led her school to be one of the first two secondary schools in Bristol to be awarded the Inclusion Standard and also to achieve the Healthy School’s award. She also led on the Aiming High project to support the achievement of African Caribbean students. Eileen has worked with colleagues across the city (Bristol) to avoid permanent exclusion of students and was a member of the Fair Access Panel. Eileen has also taught in Japan and worked with colleagues in Canada and Jamaica.  

Eileen has been on the Academy Council of St Matthias Park Pupil Referral unit for over a decade, her ambition is to ensure that all children receive the support and care that they need without having to go through the damaging process of permanent exclusion.

Julie Atherton

Julie Atherton 

Julie is currently on sabbatical

Chair of Knowle DGE Academy Council

Committee: Audit Finance and Resource Committee


Founder and Managing Director of Small Wonder a marketing consultancy specialising in the education sector. After over 20 years’ working at a Board level in commercial businesses and agencies, Julie has a breadth of strategic experience delivering leadership, business transformation, integrated marketing, and brand development. A digital and social media expert, Julie currently works with many organisations, schools and universities, in content marketing, brand development, recruitment, fundraising, CRM, digital and data, and social media. An industry leader and trainer, Julie creates and delivers digital and direct marketing training for the IDM and universities, regularly judges awards, and chairs the DMA Social Media Council.Julie is a co-opted member of the University of Gloucestershire Council sitting on Finance and General Purposes committee, a Trustee of Learn@ MAT and an Academy


Toby Kempster


Committee: Quality and Standards Committee 


Toby is a practising barrister and has for over 25 years specialised in employment and personal injury law. He is presently a deputy head of Old Square Chambers which is based in London and Bristol.

He lives in Bath and is married to a solicitor and has two adult children.

In his spare time, and amongst a number of mainly sport related hobbies, he has for more than 10 years been involved as a volunteer with Keynsham Mencap.


Helen Bond


Committee: Audit Finance and Resource Committee

Helen is mum to two boys and has lived experience of neurodivergence, including autism and ADHD.  She understands the world of Special Educational Needs first-hand.  Having spent years working in the oil industry and local authorities, Helen took a career break to raise her boys.  Once they were old enough Helen went back to education gaining a FdA in Therapeutic Counselling, a BSc in Applied Social Science and a Post graduate diploma in Psychology. 

Helen is currently the Co-ordinator of her local Parent Carer Forum and actively involved in working with families whose children have SEN or disabilities.   Helen has a particular interest in supporting families whose children are not currently in formal education.  Helen has been Chair of a small charity in the past and hopes to bring some of her experience from that role along with her interest in Special Educational Needs to the role of trustee. 

 At home she enjoys spending time with her family and her chocolate Labrador.  Helen likes to read, knit and spend time with friends.


Avril Marshall


Committee: Audit Finance and Resource Committee


Avril has lived in Hartcliffe for 34 years and been involved in the Regeneration for 28 of those years.  She has worked on /with many projects and energetic individuals in the local community, to make Hartcliffe and Withywood a place of choice to live and bring up their families, with many business and employment opportunities.

As the parent of children who have been Permanently Excluded and gone through the Pupil Referral system Avril has waited for an opportunity to actively get involved in the development of Pupil Referral Unit across Bristol and is really excited that that time has come.

Avril is especially looking forward to an opportunity to be part of a dialogue with the City of Bristol College, and for the local BAME community in particular by expanding the chance to learn about BAME Hair and Beauty. This will enable students from Hartcliffe (and South Bristol) to reduce their carbon foot print rather than be referred to the Ashley Down site.

Avril was the first person from her family to go to University and obtain a Degree in Business and Finance, at the University of the West of England (falling pregnant with each of her sons, while still working full time),

Avril is the founder member of Vision (Visual Society in One Network) Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME), which is a support group for local BAME residents living in Hartcliffe and Withywood.  They meet on a monthly basis to discuss issues which affect  local residents, such as Education, Health, Housing, Criminal Justice system and access to traditional Food i.e. local Morrisons to name a few. 

Avril believes that she has a role to play with her skills and experience being a different angle, to assist the Academy Council in building resilience and combatting the many challenges ahead for society as a whole.


Lucy Quattrone


Committee: Audit Finance and Resource Committee


Lucy studied Economics and Management in Italy and currently work as an IT Specialist Consultant at Deloitte.

Alongside her studies she has always tried to help Academies and Charities and has experience working with young kids with social, emotional, mental health (SEMH), social language and communication needs (SLCN) and autistic spectrum condition (ASC).

Now that she lives in Bristol, she is extremely proud to have joined the trust and motivated to provide the best possible future and education to many children.