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Durham Blue Coat C.E Aided Junior School

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Meet the Governors

Blue Coat C of E (Aided) Junior School - Governing Body

The Governing Body

Mrs H Donkin

Position: Chair of Governors

LA Governor

Committees: Behaviour and Attitudes/Personal Development, Headteachers Performance, Leadership and Management (Chair)

Term of Office: 22/6/21 to 21/6/25

Business, Personal and Pecuniary Interests: None Declared

Meetings attended 2021/22 100%


I work for Durham County Council as a Special Educational Needs Support Worker with a lead in Autism and Social communication difficulties.  I am a past pupil of Blue Coat School and currently have a son who attends the school as well as a daughter who has recently left.  I live in Sacriston with my children and husband and our array of family pets.


Mr M Fox-Watson

Foundation DBE Governor

Committees - Leadership and Management (Chair), First Pay Review

Term of Office 21/7/2017 to 3/10/2025

Business, Personal and Pecuniary Interests - None Declared

Meetings attended 2021/22 87.5%

I am currently a foundation governor having recently been appointed this year to the Governing Body. As a Business Manager working for Barclays Bank across Durham and Bishop Auckland, I was approached to become a governor for the financial expertise which I have built up in my 15 years with Barclays. Prior to that I worked in Marketing for Reg Vardy.

I have 3 children, one who has recently left Blue Coat and the others will be progressing through over the coming years. While the children take up much of my spare time, when I get a chance I play golf whenever possible.

While my children give me a vested interest in the progress of Blue Coat CofE School, I am passionate about making the school the best place it can be for all current and future students and staff and hope that I am able to do that during my time as a Governor.

Revd Canon Caroline Dick

Foundation DBE Governor 

Committees - Behaviour and Attitudes/Personal Development, First Pay Review

Term of Office Ex-officio

Business, Personal and Pecuniary Interests - None Declared

Meetings attended 2021/22 100%


I am the Team Rector of Durham North Team (6 churches, 7 communities) and have a ministerial focus at All Saints Newton Hall.


I am a foundation governor and see my primary role within the school as being to support the staff in the delivery of the RE curriculum and to develop the worshipping life of the school.


I take assemblies on a regular basis, lead the school services in Church and help to prepare the children for confirmation.


I have been a governor at Sacriston Primary School and have two adult children.


Before joining Durham North Team, I worked for the Diocese of Durham as their Social Responsibility Officer and in that capacity helped to develop a number of church based community development projects in deprived communities.

Mr D Jackson

Foundation DBE Governor 

Committees - Leadership and Management

Term of Office: 15.3.21 to 13.3.25

Business, Personal and Pecuniary Interests - None Declared

Meetings attended 2021/22 14%


I am a Chartered Surveyor with 20 years experience of dealing with commercial properties and developments and a Director at GVA, an international property consultancy where I am asset manager for a range of property companies and developers. I oversee the property management of a number of UK wide commercial portfolios and lead the management teams in the northern regional offices of Newcastle, Leeds, Manchester and Liverpool.


In my spare time, I run the Framwellgate Moor unit of the The Church Lads’ & Church Girls Brigade which is a youth organisation with around 4,000 members nationally. I lead the Durham Diocesan area and hold the position of Regimental Commander and serve as a Trustee on the national board. Through the CL&CGB, I organise North Eastern Camp, which is an outdoor pursuits holiday for children which takes place over a week in the Lake District each August.


I have fundraised for several local and national charities and sat on the organising committee for the St Oswald’s Hospice (of Gosforth, Newcastle) Charity Ball and have raised over £27,000 through sponsored events and challenges including treks to the top of Kilimanjaro and along sections of the Great Wall of China.


Mrs S Horsfield

Associate Governor

Committees - Leadership and Management

Term of Office 2/10/2017 - 01/10/2025

Business, Personal and Pecuniary Interests - None Declared

Meetings attended 2021/22 100%



I joined the school in 2015 after working in 3 other schools over the past 26 years in school administration. I completed my School Business Management qualifications and worked as Office Manager for a number of years before being promoted to School Business Manager.  I have served on 2 other governing bodies as a staff representative and Parent Governor.


I regularly help at a local Rainbow and Brownie unit in Chester le Street.   I am also treasurer of the Chester le Street Guide shop and help regularly selling uniform to all areas of the Guiding Association.   I enjoy walking and am a member of a local gym.


I believe in the ethos of the school and try to contribute to the life of Bluecoat and wish to support the children and families of Newton Hall.

Mr D Knapton

Foundation PCC Governor

Committees - Behaviour and Attitudes/Personal Development

Term of Office 08/010/2019 - 19/06/2023

Business, Personal and Pecuniary  Interests : Principle Lecturer at University of Sunderland, child in school

Meetings attended 2021/22 100%


As an active member of All Saints Church, I have been appointed as foundation governor. Being involved with some of the varied activities the church offers children and young people, I’m looking forward to maintaining and further strengthening the excellent links between Blue Coat and the church.


I have worked as a Design Engineer in the automotive industry and as such have a keen interest in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) subjects and making these accessible to young people. I’m Principal Lecturer for Engineering at the University of Sunderland where I carry out both teaching and management responsibilities. I’m also undertaking a PhD study to investigate how higher education can more effectively bridge the gap between school and working careers.


I live in Framwellgate Moor with my wife and two children, our Son is a pupil of Blue Coat as a family we thoroughly enjoy being part of the school community and all that it offers its pupils.

Ms L Ingleby

Position: Vice Chair of Governors

Co Opted Governor

Committees - Leadership and Management, Quality of Education

Term of Office 21/03/2022 - 20/03/2026

Business, Personal and Pecuniary Interests - Durham CC - Inclusive Provision and Pastoral Support

Meetings attended 2021/22 100%


I am currently a Co-opted Governor and Interim Vice Chair of Governors having recently being appointed to the Governing Body. I work as part of the Education Durham Team within Children and Young People’s Services at Durham County Council as Lead for Inclusive Provision & Pastoral Support. A key area of my role is school improvement working directly alongside senior leaders within schools. I have extensive experience of leading senior teams within schools and of developing pastoral provision practices across other local authorities.

Councillor M Simmons

Foundation DBE Governor

Committees - Behaviour and Attitudes/Personal Development, First/Pay Review

Term of Office 4/10/2021 to 3/10/2025

Business, Personal and Pecuniary  Interests: Governor at Newton Hall Infants, Trinity Sports College, Framwellgate Moor Primary

Meetings attended 2021/22 80%


 I live in Newton Hall so I am familiar with the school and the surrounding area, and I also attend All Saints Church.        

 I have worked for Durham County Council for thirty-five years as a teacher/headteacher.   I am a Durham County Councillor and at present I am Chairperson of the Corporate Parenting Panel and also show an interest in all areas of children’s services within the County. I am a governor at three other schools in the area showing my committed interest in Education.

I grew up in a large family having both older and younger brothers and sisters. I have therefore had in my heart the welfare and happiness of children all my life. I am the mother of one son.


I promise all parents I will work for the good of all children attending Durham Blue Coat Junior School.



Mrs E Royle


I am a Deputy Head teacher with 27 years of experience working in schools. I have worked in mainstream primary and currently work in a special school for pupils with Severe Learning Difficulties from age 2 to 19. I have taken the lead for a range of subjects before joining the SLT. I have also been a governor in my own school for over 15 years and have first hand experience of the leadership and management of education, I feel my experience enables me to have a positive and supportive impact on the work of the school. 

I strongly believe in providing children with a varied and rich education that develops them as a whole person, I feel all children should have the opportunity to be happy and successful and that we all have a role in supporting them to be the best that they can be.

I live locally and have two children who attended Bluecoat and have many happy memories of their primary school experience and have moved successfully into secondary education


Ms K Watson

Parent Governor

Committees -  TBC

Term of Office 6/12/2022 to 7/12/2026

Business, Personal and Pecuniary Interests : None Declared

Meetings attended 2021/22 NA


I have worked in regeneration roles for over 15 years, the last 10 of which I have been a Project Manager in Regeneration and Development for Durham County Council.  I work in and amongst the community of South Durham helping businesses to grow and thrive, with a particular focus on town centre vibrancy and viability.


We moved to Newton Hall from Chester-le-Street in 2020 and both of our children now attend the school.


I play for Durham Roller Derby and roller skating is my passion.   We are an active family that enjoys long walks with our German Shepherd, Charlie.  Charlie and I also do canicross together.


I hope in my role as Parent Governor I can provide both strategic and objective advice to the Governing Board to ensure the best success of the school whilst helping to maintain the high standards of education and extra-curricular activities that we know and expect.