Wellsway Multi Academy Trust is a partnership of schools which span the Bristol - Keynsham - Bath area that are now working together to provide a high quality educational experience for all students in their care.

Vision + Values

Vision + Values

Core Purpose

Wellsway Multi Academy Trust’s purpose is to ensure that each academy within the trust achieves outstanding outcomes and high standards in all aspects of its work, so that children and young people receive a first class education that enables them to realise their potential and leave school as confident, caring and well-rounded individuals.

We will achieve this through excellent teaching that challenges and inspires and through providing enrichment opportunities that support each child’s development. We want children and young people to enjoy school and to have positive experiences they will remember for the rest of their lives.

We will build a strong and cohesive identity for our trust whilst recognising that each academy within the Trust has its own unique characteristics. Through collaboration and joint working, we will ensure that all our academies share in, and benefit from, each other’s strengths

Values –


The Trust requires each academy to expect and uphold the highest professional standards in all aspects of its work.


The Trust’s primary purpose is education and priority will be given to allocating resources into the classroom and learning activities.


The Trust places inclusion at the heart of all its provision and seeks to develop a range of inclusive services to support learners with specific needs.


Gaining value for money is central to the Trust’s operation and directors actively seek opportunities to develop joint educational provision and shared services across schools.


The directors seek to develop a multi academy trust of optimum size, with economies of scale that create the capacity for the Trust to provide excellent support to all its schools, whilst retaining its local nature.


Schools within the trust will be located within a reasonable driving distance of the hub school, Wellsway, so that school-to-school support is possible.


Wellsway Multi Academy Trust has been established to support education within the wider local area.

Leadership Team

Leadership Team

The Executive Leadership Team has corporate responsibility for the overall formulation and implementation of strategies and policies approved by the Board of Trustees. It comprises of the Chief Executive, Chief Operating Officer, Director of Education, Executive Primary Lead, Strategic Lead for SEND, and the Principals/Headteachers from each academy.

Andrea Arlidge - Chief Executive

Andrea is the founding Chief Executive of the Trust, which was set up by the governing body of Wellsway School in 2014. She has extensive educational experience, which includes 16 year’s successful headship experience in three secondary schools. Andrea is a National Leader of Education and holds an Honorary Doctorate, awarded by Bath Spa University in 2018 for services to education. She plays a full role as a system leader in the wider local area and is a governor at Bristol Grammar School and City of Bristol College.

Tim Howes - Chief Operating Officer

Joined the Trust in August 2014 following a twenty year career in the hospitality industry. Formerly general manager at Accor Hotels for 10 years and previously at Disney and Marriott Hotels. Significant experience in financial strategy, estates management, human resources and marketing.

Tim Howes leads the Trust’s business services team, responsible for delivering shared services to all academies.

Gary Schlick - Director of Education

With 14 years headship experience in two secondary schools and executive leadership experience in other schools and specialist settings, Gary has significant experience in school leadership and in raising achievement. Gary has been involved in training headteachers internationally including in Africa and the Middle East.

Stephen Luke - Executive Primary Lead

Stephen has 25 years of experience in leading schools as a headteacher, executive headteacher and director of education. During this time he led nine schools from an inadequate judgement to good or outstanding within a three year period. This experience was gained at schools in areas of high deprivation and resulted in rapid raising of outcomes for all pupils.

Margaret Simmons-Bird, MBE - Executive School Improvement Lead

Margaret is a recently retired Director of Education with extensive experience working in local government, schools, colleges and universities to raise standards and improve the education outcomes for children and young people. She has led a wide range of education services including school improvement, schools finance, schools’ admissions and capital planning, looked after children and the music service.

Margaret has also been an Ofsted inspector, has worked with a wide range of schools to strengthen school leadership, improve teaching and learning and develop and promote effective inclusion and equalities policies to achieving a more diverse workforce.

Margaret is committed to working with schools to address all forms of inequality and social injustice.

Julie Dyer MBE - Strategic Lead for SEND 

With 15 years experience of headship she has recently retired as head teacher of Three Ways School, an outstanding special school. Julie was also the head teacher of St Nicholas Special School in Wiltshire.

With wide experience of special needs over many years she holds the following qualifications, M.ed in Autism, B.ed in SEND and a BA in Psychology. Julie was awarded an MBE in 2019 for services to children and young people with special educational needs.



The governance structure at Wellsway Multi Academy Trust.

Diagram showing the structure of the WMAT governance.

The board of trustees – the board is responsible for setting high standards and levels of student achievement and for monitoring performance and ensuring accountability. It is tasked with driving continuous improvement through regular review planning and evaluation activities. It also manages corporate communication and stakeholder engagement.   Once strategies have been agreed, the board delegates most operational activity to the executive leadership team.

There are four trust standing committees which have duties to support the board of trustees in these responsibilities, to focus on the delivery of the vision against the trust’s standards and engage with stakeholders internally and externally to ensure that their needs are being met, as follows:

Finance and estates committee:

The committee’s core functions cover all financial services and estates management. It has a critical role in overseeing budget formulation, monitoring, and treasury management. Its financial functions extend into value for money and procurement. It also has a wider brief covering asset and facilities management.

Audit and risk committee:

This committee has a number of core functions that include internal controls, external and internal audit, fraud, risk management and health and safety. The committee also receives and considers in detail the statutory accounts for the trust and recommends them to the board of trustees for approval prior to presentation to trust members at the AGM. It also recommends the appointment of the external auditors to the board of trustees for subsequent approval by the trust members at the AGM.

HR committee:

This committee’s role is to oversee all matters relating to strategies and policies for human resources and organisational development. It also has a wider brief in monitoring key performance indicators such as staff turnover and absence and promoting and monitoring staff wellbeing. The committee has a remuneration sub committee to review a framework for the remuneration, benefits and incentives of the executive team.

Education and standards committee:

This committee's core functions are in relation to the overall performance, attainment and achievement of the Trust's academies. It has a wider brief to include curriculum, governance effectiveness and monitoring of high performing and disadvantaged groups.

Academy governance committees (AGC):

The Board has also established committees known as Academy Governance Committees for each academy within the Trust.  Their role is to oversee all matters relating to students’ learning and well­being. The core functions of an AGC cover all factors which relate to, and underpin, good teaching and learning. It has a critical role in monitoring the progress and impact of personalised learning interventions to ensure high standards and student outcomes in line with the Trust’s vision and strategy. 

The members

Diocese of Bath and Wells logo, blue cross on a white backgroundDiocese of Bath and Wells, has been a member since 1st September 2015
Nigel HutchingsNigel Hutchings, has been a member since 26th March 2019.

Nigel transferred to Lloyds Bank, Keynsham as sub manager in the late 1980s to 1998. He was seconded to Business Link West and offered a position as regional affairs director to Bristol Chamber of Commerce and Initiative. Whilst there, he helped to form the SW Chambers of Commerce representing 10 000 businesses on the Regional Assembly and SWERDA.

During this time Nigel became a co-founder of Ablaze, a Bristol based education/business charity, and remains its chair of the board of trustees. In June 2015, Ablaze was honoured with the Queens Award for voluntary service.

Nigel retired from full-time employment in June 2013.

He is a member of Keynsham Rotary and a past president, a past member of Keynsham Round Table, and a current Trustee of Keynsham Charities.

Peter Rilett, member of the WMAT TrustPeter Rilett, has been a member since 26th March 2019.

Peter was the senior partner of KPMG’s Bristol office prior to his retirement. As a qualified chartered accountant he has significant experience in the property, construction, printing and leisure sectors. He also held a number of national internal responsibilities including tasks for the firm’s pension schemes and property portfolio, combined with national leadership roles for specialist units serving passenger transport (rail and bus) and real estate advisory.

Peter’s expertise lies in the commercial analysis of a business situation and the development of a strategy to extract maximum value. He is an experienced commercial negotiator with strong project management skills.

Since retiring in 2005 Peter has held a number of board and chair positions including non-executive director of: Centaur Services Ltd (chair until sale in August 2008 now board adviser), Cotswold Homes Ltd, Watts of Lydney Group Ltd, Advanced Transport Systems Ltd (2005 - 2012).  Also Chair of North Bristol NHS Trust (2009 - 2017), Chair City of Bristol College (from 2016), trustee of St Monica’s Trust (chair of finance and development) (2009-2018), chair of governors of Bristol Grammar School (2009 - 2013), BusinessWest (2005), member Society of Merchant Venturers (2004, master in 2012)



The board of trustees (directors)

Malcolm BroadMalcolm Broad MBE - trustee since 1 September 2015 and chair of the trust board. Chair of the trust finance and estates committee and chair of the Wellsway Multi Academy Trust Trading Company.

Malcolm has been involved in the education sector since 2000 when he chaired the Bristol Education Action Zone (23 schools in the most deprived areas of Bristol) for five years. He has experience as a governor of primaries, secondaries, academies and eight years as a governor of an independent school in Bristol. He is currently a governor at St Patrick’s Catholic Primary School, Bristol.

He has chaired a secondary academy and two primary academies as well as chairing an interim executive board.

For the past 19 years he has been training trustees in their responsibilities and accountabilities in schools and a wide range of charities.

Malcolm became a National Leader of Governance (NLG)  in 2016.

Away from the education sector, Malcolm is a trustee of Bristol Zoo and chair of its audit and risk committee, treasurer of Keynsham Baptist Church, treasurer of the Bristol Baptist College and a non-executive director of the Baptist Insurance Company Plc.

His strengths are in providing leadership, conflict resolution, mentoring support, investigation work, employment relations casework and finance.

Malcolm is a retired HSBC senior commercial manager and former chair of the Banking, Insurance and Finance Union manager’s committee and former chair of the HSBC job evaluation committee.

Andrea ArlidgeAndrea Arlidge - chief executive and trustee since 1st April 2014.

Andrea is the founding Chief Executive of the Trust, which was set up by the governing body of Wellsway School in 2014. She has extensive educational experience, which includes 16 year’s successful headship experience in three secondary schools.

Andrea is a National Leader of Education and holds an Honorary Doctorate, awarded by Bath Spa University in 2018 for services to education.

She plays a full role as a system leader in the wider local area and is a governor at Bristol Grammar School and City of Bristol College.

Connor RyanConor Ryan - chair of the education and standards committee. Trustee since 1st April 2014.

An educational policy and communications specialist and writer, currently working for the Office for Students as director of external relations. He is also a National Foundation for Educational Research trustee. Previously worked extensively for other national education organisations including the Sutton Trust. He was David Blunkett’s special adviser while he was secretary of state for education and he worked in 10 Downing Street as Tony Blair’s special adviser on education.

Marlene MorleyMarlene Morley CBE - vice chair of the trust board and chair of the audit and risk committee. Trustee since 1st July 2014.

Marlene brings to the role her wide experience at the MOD where she led major projects specialising in people and organisational change. She was awarded the CBE in 2010 and retired from the MOD in 2012. Marlene has also worked for several years to enhance the skills of young people in the West of England, most recently on the skills group of the Local Enterprise Partnership. Marlene is currently chair of the working group that designed and is delivering the Employablity Chartermark, aimed at improving the work readiness of young people leaving school.

Graham Shaw - chair of the governance committee. Trustee since 1st September 2015.

Graham was a partner in a national law firm TLT Solicitors, specialising in employment and professional conduct law before retiring in 2015. Before studying law, he was a teacher, latterly as head of faculty and head of resources in a Northamptonshire comprehensive school. He holds an advanced diploma in education management and was formerly a parent governor at his daughter's school in Northampton.

Neil SimpsonNeil Simpson - member of the HR committee. Trustee since 1st April 2014.

Consultant paediatrician and medical director, Sirona Care and Health, an independent non-profit distributing organisation providing publicly-funded health and social care services. Member of the board with particular responsibilities as responsible officer and quality and safety of service.

Susan RobbinsSusan Robbins - trustee since 20th March 2015 and chair of the HR committee.

A teacher for 16 years, left the profession in 1990 to become education officer in local government, including a posting as head of education planning and Lifelong Learning for Gloucestershire Council. An independent education consultant since 2007 with six local authorities, with specialisms including school organisation, admission and transport.

John Everitt - WMAT trusteeJohn Everitt - trustee since 1st July 2020.

John is a Chartered Civil Engineer with over 30 years experience of leading large private and public sector organisations. In 2012, he retired after 17 years as Chief Executive of Bath & North East Somerset Unitary Council and he also had responsibility for the co-terminus NHS Primary Care Trust. Prior to this, John was an MD for Bouygue, a French Multi National. As well as experience in running public and private sector organisations, John has significant knowledge of the workings of local and national government, governance arrangements and also the voluntary sector with whom he worked closely in his last full time role.

Since retiring, John has been a Trustee for The National Blind Children's Society, Guide Dogs and a member of The Bath Abbey Restoration Committee. He is currently a Non Executive Director for the NHS North Bristol Trust. 

National leaders of governance (NLG) and local leaders of governance (LLG)

NLG are highly experienced individuals who give their knowledge, skills and enthusiasm to a range of different schools. They are designated by the Department for Education. Malcolm Broad, chair of the Wellsway Multi Academy Trust (WMAT) is a NLG and is able to offer support to schools across the west country. In addition the WMAT has two LLG: they are Graham Shaw and Chris Trout. Graham is also a trustee of the WMAT and Chris is the chair of governors at IKB. They can be deployed to support schools in the local area, both within the WMAT and beyond.