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Meet the Governors

Welcome to our Governors’ section.

Please find below details of how our Governing body is structured, including the names, categories, responsibilities and terms of appointment for each Governor.

We have also provided a Register of Governor Interests. We currently have no Associate members.

You can email the chair of governors directly as follows:

Chris Shepherd - Chair of Governors/ Health and Safety

Chris Shepherd - Chair of Governors/ Health and Safety 1 Appointed 27/4/16 Term of office ends 26/4/20

Chris Shepherd BSc CEng MIET

I have lived in Swindon for 15 years with my wife.

I graduated with a degree in Physics with Electronics in 1983 and have worked as an electronics engineer since, I currently work at the Great Western Hospital as a Biomedical Technician.

I have been a school governor for around thirty years, most recently at Lydiard Park Academy, where I was Chair of the Personnel Committee until 2016 and remain a Member of the Parks Academies Trust. I became a governor at Nythe in 2016 and was elected to Chair of the Governing Body in 2017.

I have always been interested in education and feel that acting as a governor allows me to put my personal skills and experience to practical use. I enjoy being a governor as it gives me an insight into the decisions being made by the Senior Leadership Team and the reasons for them. We discuss these decisions and challenge them when necessary. We can also make our recommendations/suggestions which we hope helps the school and the pupils.

Johanna Bryant Vice Chair of Governors/ Co-opted Governor Link Childprotection/Safeguarding

Johanna Bryant Vice Chair of Governors/ Co-opted Governor Link Childprotection/Safeguarding  1 Re-Appointed 27/02/17 Term of Office Ends 2021

I have been working in children’s social care for more than 20 years and have extensive experience in supporting vulnerable children through challenging and difficult times of their lives.

I currently live in Stratton and have two daughters who are both at university studying (dentistry and nursing) as a parent I know how important a child’s educational experiences are. I am passionate that all children and young people should have the opportunity to reach their full potential, not only educationally but socially and emotionally and I feel that Nythe Primary school shares that belief.

I have been a governor at Nythe for over 4 years and in that time have seen how hard everyone connected to the school have worked to make it the wonderful, supportive, nurturing and high quality school it is today.

Joshua Paine Co-opted Governor - Link Finance Governor

Joshua Paine Co-opted Governor - Link Finance Governor 1 Appointed: 01/09/2014 – Term of Office ends 09/20

I joined Nythe Governing Body September 2014 to give something back to the community but also to gain an understanding of how the school structure has changed in preparation for starting my own family. My wife gave birth to our first child, a little girl, in January 2016 who is just a wonderful, exciting, frustrating, ball of limitless energy.


My day job is as a Demand Consultant for the Information Management Team at Nationwide Building Society. I have a degree in Mathematics and a background in computers. I hope that I can use my skills and experience will make a positive contribution to the school and community. I am especially interested in ensuring the school continues to progress so we can get make the most of the tools and funding we have available, for both the pupils and the teachers.

Joan Bridge - Co-Opted Governor Link SEN

Joan Bridge - Co-Opted Governor Link SEN 1 Appointed 18/01/2017 Term of Office Ends 2021

I am delighted to be able to join the governing body of Nythe Primary School and hope that with my previous experience and general enthusiasm, I will be able to make a positive contribution to support the staff and children of the school.


I have recently retired but have spent the last 35years as a primary school teacher in a number of Swindon schools. I am especially interested in how children learn and, more importantly, how teachers can adapt their teaching and adjust the learning environment to enable children to successfully access the curriculum. For a major part of my career I had responsibility for children with special educational needs and disabilities and in my last post I was the lead person for safeguarding.


When I first came to Swindon I lived in various areas of the town including Nythe but eventually settled in Chiseldon when I started my family.


Apart from looking after my grandson for two days a week, having more free time has enabled me to pursue my interests, including reading, swimming, gardening, DIY maintenance and travel, however, my passion is long distance walking.

Ben Clare - Co-opted Governor

Ben Clare - Co-opted Governor 1 Appointed 05/04/2017 - Term of Office Ends 2021

My name is Ben Clare and I have lived in the Nythe area since 2005. I have two children, one of which attends Nythe primary school and the other Nythe pre – school. I am pleased to have been elected onto the board of governors and during my time I will do my best to ensure that the school continues to progress and continues to cater for the individual needs of all of the pupils in the school.

I have a background in teaching as a Geography specialist and teacher of Humanities since 2001 and in Swindon since 2003.

Sally Clarke - Headteacher/Co-opted Governor

Picture 1

I have a lovely husband called Phil, a daughter and a son who are both at University and a little rescue dog called Benjy. I love supporting Bath Rugby Club, playing the piano, reading, swimming and singing in a rock band with my husband. This year I am honoured to be serving as the President of the Swindon National Association of Head Teachers.

There are some events that took place in my early formative years that gave me my passion for teaching and the knowledge that teachers can make an enormously positive contribution to the long term quality of our lives.

I was born in Swindon Princess Margaret Hospital in 1971. When I was 2 and my brother was 4, our mum had a huge stroke leaving her severely paralysed. Mum was in hospital for the next 3 years and our dad still had to work so I was fostered by my lovely Auntie in Faringdon and my brother by our Uncle in Purton. Dad worked all week in Swindon and then worked at weekends with his own dad to build a house in Faringdon that was suitable for mum as she was left using a wheelchair. When she left hospital we were all able to live together again.

These events resulted in me being a very confused little girl. The Infant School in Faringdon allowed me to start school full time early and the very kind and understanding teachers there gently helped me to come to terms with being separated from my family, then later coping as a young carer to my mum. As a result of their love and understanding, I decided at a very young age that one day I would be a teacher at Faringdon Infant School, which I did!

I have been a teacher for many years, a Key Stage Leader, an Assistant Head, and an Early Years Consultant and Area SENDCo for Swindon before taking up my first Headship in Witney. I was very excited to take up my second Headship at Nythe in September 2015 and am bursting with pride that alongside the talented team of staff and Governors we gained a Good Ofsted outcome in September 2016, then an Achievement Award for the highest Year 6 SATs results in the Swindon Borough in 2016. We have achieved a great deal in a very short time and I look forward to working with more members of the local community as we continue to improve our lovely community school.

Jenni Akroyd - Co-opted Governor

Jenni Akroyd - Co-opted Governor 1 Appointed 20/09/2009 - Term of office ends:09/22

Claire Sowden - Staff Governor

Claire Sowden - Staff Governor 1 Appointed 01/11/2015 – Term of office ends:01/11/2019

Paul Davis (Clerk to Governors)

Paul Davis (Clerk to Governors) 1

Attendance List 2018-19

Attendance List 2017 2018

Attendance List 2016 2017

Declaration of Interest Summary

Governors Allowances

Scheme of Delegation