Meet our Governors

To find out more about our governing body members, please read the short biographies below.

Patrick Gillespie – Chair of Governors

I have been a Foundation Governor at English Martyrs Catholic Primary School since 2010 and the Chair of Governors since 2012. I initially became a Foundation Governor of a primary school in Plumstead which is where my two daughters attended. I am committed to catholic education with a strong belief in the choice offered through a catholic school, now and for future generations of children.

 I feel privileged to be a foundation governor of English Martyrs, and I am very impressed by the strong catholic ethos that the school embodies, the outstanding care shown to the children and the schools consistently high standards of education which is delivered by dedicated and hardworking teachers under the excellence leadership of the Headteacher.

 I am now semi-retired after working in Mental Health initially as a nurse and then as a manager for over 30 years. I believe my work place skills support the Headteacher and staff of the school. Being actively involved as a governor has given me a greater understanding of other important roles in school life.

Janet Douglas Gardner – Foundation and Deputy Chair 

My name is Janet Douglas Gardner and I am a Foundation Governor. As an educator, I use my knowledge and skills of policy and pedagogy to be a critical friend to the school.

I am a member of the Curriculum Committee and Link Governor for Literacy.



Julius Ogunmuyiwa – Foundation Governor

I have been a foundation Governor at English Martyrs’ Catholic Primary  School for over 4 years. I  serve on the Premises and Finance committee, and also sit on the Diocese of Southwark Schools Admissions Appeals Panels.

I am a practising Catholic and a strong believer of the choice offered by the catholic ethos embodied  in our schools which consistently reflected in high standard of education.

I am retired but active. During my working life abroad and in the UK worked in Accounting and Finance. Since retirement I have been giving my skills and experience to Society by volunteering in the community. I volunteer in courts with Citizen Advice – Witness Service, Pact – helping and supporting prisoners and their families. 

I have a wide and good experience of the inner city and hope that my skills and experience can be of help to the development of future generation.

Marie Southall – Foundation Governor

I have been a Foundation Governor at English Martyrs’ School  since 2013.

 have worked in numerous public affairs roles during the past 5 years and currently manage the public affairs team at the Catholic Education Service.  I am proud of the success of the pupils and staff at English Martyrs’ and look forward to continuing to play my part to ensure that all children receive the best possible Catholic education.


(Awaiting Photo) 

 Caitlin O’Kelly – Foundation Governor

I have been a member of the Governing Body since spring 2018 and have lived in the area for the last four years. I work for central government and volunteer my time for causes that are important to me, including the Samaritans. I want to support the school by bringing my experience in central government and other volunteering and combining it with my belief in the importance and value of a catholic education. It is a privilege to be a member of the Governing Body and the Learning and Curriculum Committee.

(Awaiting Photo) 

Mr Joel Arda- Foundation Governor

I joined English Martyrs’ Catholic Primary School as Foundation Governor in March 2019.

During a long and varied career in teaching, including in Catholic schools, I have gained different levels of experience in a range of educational settings to be an active member of the Governing Body. In accruing many years as an experienced teacher, middle and senior leader within secondary education, has led me to implement and monitor change, as well as assess the impact of initiatives all in service of young people.

Collaborating with English Martyrs’ leads to a natural exchange of ideas. The resulting dialogue between primary and secondary schools is a very important stage of a child’s education and to bring about an awareness between both phases. At the same time, I recognise the role of Foundation Governor is to challenge and support with this being distinct from the running of the school by its senior team and staff.

I hope to contribute my skills to promote Catholic education through effective governance by benefiting English Martyrs’, its staff, parents, community and ultimately the students.

(Awaiting Photo)

Ms Mead – Staff Governor

 Appointed January 2021.

(Awaiting Photo)

Mr Adayemi – Parent Govenror

Governor Information

Please click on the headings below for more.

  1. Full Governing Body List

    Our Members

    The members of the Governing Body are as follows:

    For Governors to view the Performance and Achievements of English Martyrs’ please click on the following link.

  2. Foundation Governors

    Foundation Governors

    Foundation governors at the school represent the interests of the Diocese of Southwark who are trustees of the school. The role of the foundation governor is to ensure that the school is clearly recognisable as Christian in its ethos and that its role is seen in the provision for Catholic children of the Diocese.

  3. Parent Governors

    Parent Governors

    Parents of pupils registered at the school are eligible to stand for election as a parent governor. They are elected by other parents at the school. The school has two elected parent governors.

  4. Staff Governors

    Staff Governors

    The Head Teacher is automatically eligible to be a full member of the Governing Body by virtue of the office. Head Teachers have the choice of being a governor. Both teaching and support staff who are paid to work at the school are eligible to stand as staff governors. They are elected by other members of the staff at the school. The school has one staff governor.

  5. Local Authority Governors

    Local Authority Governors

    Local Authority governors are appointed by the Local Authority of Southwark. There is one Local Authority governor at English Martyrs.

  6. Associate Members

    Associate Members

    There are a number of associate members who can attend meetings of the Governing Body at English Martyrs. Their presence provides valuable expertise in a variety of areas. Associate members, however, do not have the right to vote at meetings.

    Governors generally hold their office for a period of four years at a time. During this time they have the opportunity to attend training courses and workshops on a comprehensive range of topics provided by the Local Authority and the Archdiocese, and receive updates on salient issues from a variety of sources.

    Governors provide guidance and support. The role of a governor is that of a ‘critical friend’, who is there to give direction and focus to the school leadership. The management of the school is the responsibility of the Head Teacher.

    Meetings of the full Governing Body are usually held once a term throughout the school year. Topics covered in meetings may include planning the school’s long term vision through the School Improvement Plan, target setting and monitoring, and the school budget. Much of the work, however, is devolved to a series of committees to ensure the workload is dealt with effectively. The Governing Body is answerable to parents and the wider community.

  7. Business Interests & Governor Induction

    Business Interests

    For information regarding any governors with business interests, please click on the link below:

    Governors Induction Document

    Please clink on the link below to view our Induction Document for your information.

  8. Governor Meetings

    Useful links for Governors

    • National Governors’ Association
    • Click here to log onto the NGA website for school governor resources.
    • GovernorNet
    • A DSCF website that provides news and information for school governors.
    • Southwark Local Authority Training Department
    • Southwark Schools Commission

Contact our Governors

If you wish to make contact with our Governors, the email address is