Board of Trustees

Graham Cook

Chair of the Trust

Graham has over 30 years in the computer software industry with a broad range of technical, operational, organisational, financial, strategic and international experience including 2 years working in the USA. He undertook a management buyout with 2 colleagues in 2011 to establish a software business based in the UK, USA and Sweden where he was CTO until the business was sold to a larger technology company in 2017 and subsequently became a Vice President until retiring in 2020. He was also a Director and co-owner of a local manufacturing business from 2009 – 2020. He served as a Parent Governor at Woldgate from  2009-2019 where he was Chair from 2011 to 2015, a period which saw the reorganisation of GB structure, appointment of a new Head (now our CEO) and improvement in the Ofsted rating from RI to Good. Graham has been the Chair of the Finance Audit and Risk Management committee of the WLP Board prior to becoming Chair of the Trust.

Christopher Keeler

Vice Chair of the Trust

Christopher has spent an extensive and varied career in education spanning five decades. Whilst working in Nottinghamshire and North Yorkshire schools he held a number of senior leadership positions including two deputy and two head ships. In 1995 he joined the School Improvement Team at Trafford Local Authority, Greater Manchester, as Senior Adviser before becoming Chief Inspector. In 2002 Christopher was appointed as Her Majesty’s Inspector of schools. One of his responsibilities during this period was leading and managing the inspection of Service Children’s Schools across the world. Following retirement in 2016 he spent four years as a consultant supporting schools in the north of England. He is currently Vice Chair of the Wolds Learning Partnership.

Jonathan Britton

Chief Executive Officer of the Trust

Jonathan is CEO of the Wolds Learning Partnership. As Headteacher at Woldgate School he moved from Requiring Improvement to Good and has been identified by Department of Education as one of the ‘top 100’ most improved schools in the country in 2016. In 2018 he became a National Leader of Education. He was previously Deputy Head at an Academy graded ‘Outstanding’ by Ofsted and experienced the transformation of that school from it being one parents actively sought to avoid due to its reputation, into one that was highly successful and oversubscribed. He was also integral to the leadership of school improvement and the grading of the school as ‘Outstanding’ and has led an ‘Outstanding’ SIAMS Inspection. He had also overseen the creation and construction of a new Sixth Form that would be recognised by the Department of Education as the highest performing vocational centre in the country, and he also established a highly successful teaching school. As Head of the Pathfinder Teaching School, he has led on school improvement, staff development, leadership and teacher training. Teacher of Maths and Physics.

John Sinclair

John is a determined, innovative and successful waste and renewable energy professional. He has created and delivered new European markets for waste wood biomass and refuse derived fuels for large corporate clients and many smaller businesses. He continues to advise, negotiate fuel contracts and supply waste derived fuels throughout the UK and Europe. In tandem with this work John and partners have developed a £30 million combined heat and power plant burning waste wood biomass at Holbrook, near Sheffield. This supplies heat to the local district heating schemes and electricity to the Grid. His family firm farms a small mixed unit in the Scottish Borders. A governor of 12 years standing at primary, federation primaries and secondary school means John brings both passion for children’s education and extensive experience in governance of schools. He is particularly adept at working with schools bringing to bear his extensive finance and development skills developed in his working life. He also brings extensive leadership experience, particularly in working with teams to assess, review strategy, set targets and deliver improved performance. He has also had broad experience in managing organisational change.  His enthusiasm for helping to bring about better schools for better outcomes for pupils remains undiminished after many years of governing.

Stephen Burley

Stephen is a member of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors, a Registered Valuer, Managing Director of RM English and a Partner and Auctioneer at York Auction Centre. As a long-standing Pocklingtonian, he is committed to the continuing development of excellence in our community and schools. He was born and bred in Pocklington and attended Pocklington Community Junior School in the early 60s, so has seen major changes to the school over time. Stephen has previously been a Governor at Pocklington and held specific Governor responsibility for finance, health and safety and the fabric of the school.

Adam Marham

Adam is Head of Governance and Compliance and Company Secretary at a Multi Academy Trust in West Yorkshire. Previously he was a Solicitor with over 15 years experience in Dispute Resolution, Employment and Insolvency. He was a Partner in a small niche firm which merged with a large regional firm. He has dealt with a wide variety of matters in Court up to and including the Court of Appeal. He lives in Beverley with his family and has been a co-opted Governor at Longcroft School and Sixth Form College since 2015 and Chair of Governors since 2017. He has worked with the East Riding of Yorkshire Council and the Wolds Learning Partnership to effect a partnership arrangement for the improvement of Longcroft.

Michael Clarke

Michael qualified as a chartered accountant in 1981 with what is now one of the Big Four firms, EY. He moved out of the profession shortly afterwards and spent the rest of his career in industry and commerce. He has worked in a wide range of businesses from small start-ups to multi-national groups. He has worked in both the building supplies industry and the motor dealership sector. Before his effective retirement in 2018 he spent the last twelve years working at a housing association in Grimsby. In 2020 he stepped in at short notice to deliver the statutory accounts for another housing association in Gainsborough, including a remote online external audit. He is a governor at two other educational institutes giving his financial expertise as required. His spare time is taken up with maintaining and enjoying his partner and his four classic cars ranging in age from 61 years to 99 years. He also enjoys music, reading and the theatre, in particular the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford upon Avon


Our five principles

A Trust Board that aspires for our children to have high expectations and high outcomes both in school and within the wider community.

A Trust Board that recognises the importance of a sense of local belonging and the empowerment of its local communities.

A Trust Board whose principal remit will be the oversight of quality educational outcomes across the partnership, underpinned by prudent financial management.

A Trust Board that incorporates expertise in the areas of teaching, school improvement, finance, employment law and educational law.

Trust Board that is innovative, promotes collaboration and is outward looking.


Telephone 01759 302395

Email office@wlp.education

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