Governor Pen Portraits

Father Adrian Hughes – Chair of Governors


21 Canon Hughes Adj Toned 3XFr. Adrian is the Vicar of St. George’s Church. He has been involved with schools and governing bodies in one way or another for the past twenty years. He has been a member of the Marden Governors for just over two years.

He says, “I love being around these young people in this learning environment and I am constantly amazed at the imagination and hard work of our staff to help them realise their potential. This is an exciting period at Marden High School with our new Head and Deputy Head and a brand new building. It raises our expectations of what might be possible and encourages us to explore even more ambitious possibilities for learning in this place.


Jon Ritchie


Jon Ritchie

Jon is a Chartered Accountant and is currently Executive Director of Corporate Services at Sunderland City Council. In this role, he is the Council’s statutory Chief Finance Officer, a role that is responsible for the management of the Council’s £600m revenue budget and £200m capital programme, including the City’s education finances.

Prior to this role, he has held a range of senior finance posts working in and with local authorities, including North Tyneside Council, where he was Head of Finance. As part of that role, he led the team providing services to the vast majority of schools in North Tyneside, including running the schools’ funding formula.

Jon is married with two daughters (at St Thomas More RC Academy) and lives in Monkseaton. He may occasionally attend meetings in his cycling lycra, for which he apologies in advance.

Kehri Ellis

Kehri Ellis is Chief Executive of North Tyneside Learning Trust, the Foundation Trust to 43 schools in North Tyneside. Kehri’s career history includes six years as Director of Newcastle Partnership, four years as Head of Social Investment at Sunderland Housing Group, as well as a number of senior regional management roles with national disability and mental health charities.

Kehri began her career in housing, managing the homelessness and housing advice service at Sunderland City Council. Kehri has an MA in Housing Policy and Management an MBA and is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Housing.

Kehri joined the Governing Body at Marden in September 2018 as a Foundation Trust Governor and has a daughter in Year 7. Kehri also currently serves as Chair of Governors at Carville Primary School in Wallsend

James Maclean

S8001731James has lived on the coast for over 35 years and has a strong connection with Marden High School as he, his brother and cousins all attended the school during the 1980s. Currently his daughter is studying in her last year for GCSEs and his son is in Year 8.

James works in Northumbrian Water’s Asset Strategy Team as a Technical Manager, responsible for developing and implementing policy for effectively dealing with waste water.

The company, through its Just an Hour community involvement scheme, has supported him over the past seven years in fulfilling the role of an active and dedicated Parent Governor, firstly at King Edward Primary School for four years and then here at Marden High. He has a strong desire to help provide our children with the best possible standard of education and in so doing afford them with as many opportunities in life as possible.

James says, “I use my experience and knowledge to good effect in this very important stage of our children’s education. This includes chairing the Finance & Premises Committee, being secretary of the Care Guidance & Support committee and as part of interview panels for senior appointments in school, such as Head Teacher and Deputy Head. Away from Marden, I’m a keen musician playing trumpet for Newcastle Concert Band, a STEM/Business Ambassador and represent Northumbrian Water on several regional groups, such as Heritage Coast and Coastal Streams partnerships.

Louise LangleyIMG_7350

Louise has lived in Cullercoats for thirteen years. Her daughter, Grace (13), is in Year 8 of Marden High School and her son, Tom (8), is in Year 4 of Cullercoats Primary. She considers this to be a wonderful place to raise and to educate a family, and her service on the Governing Body of Marden High School reflects her desire to contribute to this community for the future.

In her working life, Louise is a Professor of Geography at Durham University (, where she also serves on the academic governance body of Senate.

Louise says: “I enjoy teaching and writing about my subject immensely. It is a real privilege to spend time with young people, talking about their engagement with the geographical world in which they live. Within the UK context, the expectations placed on young people have perhaps never been higher. As a school governor, I would like to make a contribution to meeting those challenges in our local community. As the school looks forward to the future, with my fellow governors I would like to play a role in ensuring that it has the support necessary to grow and to flourish.”

Nick Brereton

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Nick works with young people to encourage their learning and personal development with a charity based in Newcastle.  He is particularly interested in young people’s leadership and empowerment.

In his personal life he is a keen amateur climber and mountaineer. His step daughter Caitlin was a Marden student until 2016.

Nicoll Loyd

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Nicoll Loyd joined the Governing Body in January 2017. Her two sons were students at the school: the youngest having just graduated from University and the eldest continuing his studies in America

Nicoll has over thirty years’ experience working in a range of roles in the NHS and is very much looking forward to working with the Governing Body to maximise the potential of Marden High School – furthering its great reputation as a school you want to both learn and work in.



Jackie Leadbitter

My name is Jackie Leadbitter and I currently have a daughter in Year 9 at Marden High School and a younger daughter due to join in September 2019.  I was raised in Cullercoats and attended Marden High School many years ago.

I have extensive experience as a former Parent Governor, Co-opted Governor and Chair of Governors within the primary school sector. I am looking forward to using my experience to support Marden High in the role of ‘critical friend’ to the school. My aim as a governor is to ensure that all pupils at Marden High School are given the best education possible by supporting the strategic direction of the school and ensuring high standards are maintained.

In my professional life I work within the public sector as a manager of multiple specialist departments.