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Thomas Deacon Education Trust

Education Trust boards are accountable bodies in law and as such must act collectively in the best interests of children, ensuring the good conduct of academies and promoting high standards of educational achievement. The three core functions of the Board are to:

  • Ensure clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction;
  • Hold executive leaders to account for the educational performance of the organisation and its pupils, and the performance management of staff; 
  • Oversee the financial performance of the organisation and making sure its money is well spent.


Mark Potter - Chair of the Board 

Mark is currently the Headmaster of the British School of Paris Junior School, having previously been Headmaster at Laxton Junior School, Oundle.

His first teaching post was at St Mark’s RCVAP School in Ipswich and, after a fulfilling four years, his sense of adventure took over and he joined the Shell Schools’ Network, to work at a School in Nigeria. Following a very successful two years in Africa, Mark moved to China to work at The CSPC International School, Shell’s new school in Daya Bay.

Mohamed Mavani - Vice Chair of the Board 

After completing a BA (Hons) degree in Accounting and Finance from Nottingham Trent University, Mohamed qualified as a Chartered Accountant in September 2001, completing his training with PKF in Nottingham before moving to KPMG. Mohamed joined Moore Stephens as Audit Manager in April 2005.

Mohamed became an Associate in July 2010 and was promoted to partner in April 2015.

Mohamed leads on audit activity for the Moore Stephens office, looking after a wide range of clients. He is responsible for the control of audit assignments, ensuring they are delivered efficiently and on time. He undertakes various audit, due diligence and consultancy assignments and regularly advises clients on internal control systems and their effectiveness.

Mohamed is the Education Sector specialist for the East Midlands, acting as Audit Partner for all the firm’s Academy and MAT clients. His sector experience also includes charities, manufacturing and construction.

Richard Barnes

Richard was brought up on a council estate in Cambridge and educated under the old direct grant system at the Perse School. 

He studied natural sciences for medicine at Cambridge and then, by a series of serendipitous events, ended up as a University Lecturer in Physiology at Cambridge.  

His main research interests are in heart, circulation and early human development.  

In Cambridge his main educational interest, apart from lecturing, has been in facilitating access and outreach work, both through his college (Emmanuel) and the university.  

He has participated in master classes, particularly in South Yorkshire, which is one of his college’s link areas, and has run many summer schools for the university.  

Richard is also Chair of the Villiers Park Educational Trust which seeks to create social mobility by providing education opportunities for gifted children from underprivileged backgrounds. 

Kate Hall


Kate is a freelance Creative Producer and has worked in the creative sector, mainly theatre, for all of her career.  Her focus is to create new opportunities for artists to work with communities to support social cohesion, well-being and aspiration .  She delivers this work through Jumped Up Theatre, a small charity, now based in Peterborough, which she founded over 20 years ago.  She has also worked locally for Vivacity and Eastern Angles, and nationally for organisations such as the Royal Shakespeare Company, English Touring Theatre and Manchester Royal Exchange

Kate lives in Peterborough with her husband and daughter, and enjoys yoga, swimming and live events, from sport to music.

Kate was a governor and chair of local infant school for a number of years.  She is passionate about all children being given the equality of opportunity from a strong and well-rounded education, and creating a lifelong interest in learning to equip them for the challenges that life may hold.


Lucy Jones

Dr Lucy Jones is Vice Principal Academic Development at Peterborough's new university, Anglia Ruskin University Peterborough. Lucy has over 25 years of broad experience across higher education leadership including inclusive education, improving quality and outcomes in education, outreach (particularly in STEM) and partnership working both in the UK and internationally. Passionate about supporting young people to access higher education and promoting social mobility and lifelong learning, Lucy has a particular interest in supporting women in accessing opportunities in science and engineering and works with a number of national and international organisations to promote gender equality.

Darren Bridger









Darren was raised and educated in Peterborough and has a background in business-to-business sales and distribution management.

For the past 15 years, Darren has been the driving force behind his own coatings company based in Leicester. The business, as well as establishing a strong reputation within its industry, supplying services to clients in various sectors including retail and construction, has also served as a platform for employing and training school leavers, many of whom come from disadvantaged backgrounds, providing them with valuable skills and opportunities.

In addition to running the coatings company, Darren has also successfully launched and managed an eCommerce venture.

In his spare time, Darren is a keen runner and hill walker, having completed several challenging events such as the 190-mile Coast to Coast walk and the New York Marathon.

Michael Wright 

Michael is currently Principal of Iqra Academy, Peterborough, an independent Girls Secondary School with an Islamic ethos. He is also Chair of the Education Group of the Muslim Council of Peterborough, and Chair of the Association of Muslim Schools for the East Midlands. He sits on the Peterborough Partnership of Secondary Schools and on the Schools of Tomorrow Fellowship.

Michael was previously Vice Dean at Lincoln College International, Saudi Arabia and was responsible for setting up a cluster of three new Colleges of Excellence. He was college lead for teacher training and was part of an inter colleges inspection team, which shared good practice with schools and colleges across the UK, Brazil, Saudi Arabia and Greece. Michael passed the Ofsted assessments to become an HMI for Further Education and Skills.

Michael was appointed as an Educational Advisor to the London 2012 Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) and was seconded full time to LOCOG as the Executive Director of Education, relating to the Bridging the Gap Project for the 2012 Games. He has worked for the Brazilian Olympic Public Authority in managing a training pilot programme for the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games and has also advised the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games on education and employer engagement.

He is a keen sportsman himself and holds National Coaching qualifications in rugby, football, tennis, badminton and weightlifting.