The Board of Governors

DF2T0800 Prep School Boy Smiling In Class 1 DF2T2388

To write to the Board of Governors, please address correspondence to:


Geraldine Watkins

Chair of the Board of Governors

c/o Louise Waltham

Bede's Senior School

Upper Dicker

East Sussex, BN27 3QH



Mr Peter Pyemont DepEd IAPS


Vice President

Dr Adrian R Bull MD



About the Governors

              Anthony Meier, CB OBE

Since retiring from the Army as a Major General, Tony Meier spent a decade in Ministerial Appointments in the MoD, Tribunals Service and the NHS.  He has twice previously been a school Chair.


Christopher Bean, LLB (Hons)

Christopher Bean is a former student of Bede's having attended both the Prep and Senior School.  He is a Partner at Gaby Hardwicke Solicitors and is also a trustee and governor in other local organisations.


John Burbidge, BA (Hons), ACA

John Burbidge graduated from the University of York. John has over 30 years’ experience in Investment Banking and was CEO of a major international bank in London for 10 years until he retired in 2011. John currently sits on two boards as a Non-Executive Director.


Andrew Corbett, MA (Hons) PGCE

Andrew Corbett is a retired Prep School Head, most recently of Holmewood House School. He has, at various times, been a Governor of five schools and Vice Chair of IAPS (the Independent Association of Preparatory Schools).


Jeremy Courtney, FRAgS, MBIAC

Jeremy Courtney is a farmer and director of a company that specialises in rural commercial property.


Dr Matthew Crummack, BSc (Hons)

Matthew Crummack graduated from the University of Aston and is a parent. Matthew has 25 years experience in consumer product and service industries, and currently serves as CEO and non-executive director at two different FTSE companies. Matthew was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from Aston University in 2016 for his achievements as an alumnus, and is Chair of the University's Business Advisory Group.


Peter Denison, OBE, CQSW

Peter Denison is a former pupil of the Prep School. Since resigning from the Regular Army as a Captain, he worked for 35 years in the Probation Service. For 28 years he was Chairman of Stepping Stones Trust, a Christian charity for the rehabilitation of ex-offenders for which he was awarded the OBE.


Christopher Doidge, (Safeguarding Governor) MA (Oxon)

Christopher Doidge recently retired as Senior Master and Housemaster at Lancing College, having also spent many years as Head of Modern Languages.


Ian Hunt, BSc

Since retiring from a career in banking, Ian Hunt has spent the last 10 years on the Boards of various NHS bodies and local organisations. He specialises in audit, finance and merger issues and is also, currently, Finance Director of the Royal Eastbourne Golf Club.


Dermot Keegan

Dermot Keegan has spent over 35 years working in Asset Management in London for both global and specialist firms. Dermot currently works in hedge funds and he is a parent.


Katharine Lees-Jones, JP, MCSP

Katharine Lees-Jones is an East Sussex magistrate and also works as an independent physiotherapist. She has experience both of teaching and of extensive pastoral involvement as a Headmaster's Wife for twenty years in independent preparatory boarding schools.


Professor Andrew Lloyd, MA (Cantab) PhD

Andrew Lloyd is a graduate of Robinson College, Cambridge and has 30 years experience in Higher Education. He is presently Professor of Biomedical Materials and Dean of the College of Life, Health & Physical Sciences at the University of Brighton and has experience as a trustee and governor within other organisations.


Mark McFadden, FRICS ACIArb

Mark McFadden is a former pupil of the Prep School and parent.  He is a partner in a regional firm of Chartered Surveyors and past President of Eastbourne & District Chamber of Commerce.


Nicholas Mercer, BA (Hons)

Nick Mercer graduated from the University of London. Nick has over 35 years’ commercial experience and is currently the Commercial Director of Eurostar International Ltd. Nick also sits on two other boards, one for a charitable foundation and the other a business partnership.


Kate Nash, BEd

After 30 years teaching experience in the independent sector, 10 as Head of Pre Prep at Marlborough House School, Kate Nash has worked as a Subject Advisor for IAPS and as a freelance educational consultant; this includes delivering teacher training to the independent sector in India.


Xavier Van Hove, MA (Hons) (Oxon)

Xavier Van Hove is a former pupil of the Senior School. He has worked for over 15 years in the financial industry and is a member of the Advisory Council of Lady Margaret Hall at Oxford University (currently on a two-year leave of absence).


Geraldine Watkins (Chair)

Geraldine Watkins is a local magistrate and owner and director of a property firm in the area. She has previously worked as an Ofsted lay inspector of schools and is also a past parent of Bede's, having had four children attend the School.


Chris Yates, MBA, BA (Hons)

Chris Yates graduated from Salford University and was awarded an MBA from City University Business School (now CASS). Chris has over 30 years commercial experience specialising in transformation and turnaround. He is currently the CEO of Office Outlet.