Academy Committee Member Profiles

Mrs. Michelle Robson – Chair of Academy Committee (Parent Member)

Picture and bio to follow

Mr. Robin Brims (Ex-Officio (Foundation Member))

I was born and brought up in Heddon and have worshipped at St Andrew’s all my life. I spent nearly 40 years in the Army rising to the rank of Lieutenant General. I then reorganised a university in Erbil, the capital of Iraqi Kurdistan. For the last 10 years I have worked with several charities seeking to give young people a better chance in life. I am Lay Chair of St Andrew’s PCC and in the photograph I am welcoming the Reverend Rachel Scheffer as Priest in Charge in September 2021.

Mrs. Lynda Henderson (Foundation Member)


My name is Lynda Henderson. I am currently a Foundation Governor on the Academy Committee at Heddon on the Wall St. Andrew’s CE Primary School.
I am now retired but worked for over 33 years in the school office so  have a very keen interest in the work and progress of the school. As I am also a Church Warden at the  local Parish Church, I am very eager to continue to build on the very strong foundations and good relationships which currently exist between the Church and the School.
In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with my five grandchildren, walking and amateur dramatics.

Mr. Andrew Wheatley – Headteacher (Headteacher Member)

I have been Headteacher at the school since September 2009 and prior to that was Headteacher at Hawthorn Church of England First School in Ashington. As Headteacher I sit on all the Committees providing support and advice. In my (limited!) spare time I enjoy spending time with my beautiful daughters, walking my dog on the wonderful beaches near my home and reading. As I see the School and Church having an essential partnership I attend and support St. Andrew’s Church in Heddon as often as possible.    

Mrs. Hannah Abbott (Staff Member)

I am a mum of three and have taught across most year groups at Heddon since September 2010.  I currently teach in Year 2.  I lead English (with a particular focus on reading, phonics and speaking and listening) across the school as well as being the Educational Visits Co-ordinator.  I have been the staff representative on the Academy Committee for two years and currently chair the Curriculum Sub-Committee.

Ms. Suzanne McFarlane  (Parent Member)

I have been a parent representative since May 2013, and have two children who attend St Andrews. Having grown up in Heddon, I also attended the school…an ever increasing number of years ago!  My career has been, for the most part,  in education management – with particular focus on finance, quality assurance, and project management – and I support the Academy Committee as Chair of the Finance and Premises committee.  In my spare time, I’ll be out and about with my son and daughter or,  I’ll be lost in a book in a quiet corner!

Mrs. Gillian Reed (Parent Member)

I moved to Heddon with my husband and two boys in 2014. Both my boys now attend Heddon school and they love their time there! I started volunteering in the school a few years ago and have grown to love being part of the school community, so much so I am now doing a college course in Specialist Support for Teaching and Learning (Teaching Assistant). I am a qualified Town Planner and, having previously worked in regeneration and community development, I now work four days a week as a Planner and Project Manager and more recently have been involved in school place planning as part of this role. In my spare time I usually end up doing housework, but for fun I enjoy playing trains, cricket, Mario Kart etc with my boys, and enjoy a good curry whenever possible!

Mrs. Claire Johnson (Co-opted Member)

I joined the Academy Committee at Heddon in 2021 and am excited to be involved with this lovely school.  I am the Deputy Head Teacher at Ponteland Primary School, which is also in the Pele Trust, and both schools work closely together.  I have two young children and enjoy spending my spare time with them, usually at the park, soft play or clip n climb!  I am a passionate reader and love nothing more than curling up with a book and losing myself in the story.  One of my favourite parts of being a teacher is discovering new children’s literature which I can then share with the children in school and hopefully fire up a lifelong love of reading in them too.

Miss. Anne Vernon (Foundation Member)

I have recently joined the Academy Council and I’m looking forward to supporting pupils and staff at Heddon on the Wall. I work for the education team across the Durham and Newcastle dioceses and enjoy providing school improvement support and training across 106 schools! When I’ve got some spare time l like crafting, gardening and curling up with a good book.

Mr. John Walsh (Co-Opted Member)

I am a former headteacher with extensive experience in Primary Education. I currently work with the PGCE Primary team at Newcastle University as an external tutor, I also work as a School Improvement Partner for several Local Authorities and I am an Educational Consultant for the Dioceses of Durham and Newcastle.

Our Clerk is Mr. Steve Leigh (Pele Trust)

Notes Photographs will be provided as soon as practicable. Academy Committee members regularly go into School and attend School related events.

If you would like to contact a Academy Committee member please direct your request to the School or Mr. Steve Leigh (Clerk to the Academy Committee) at or chat to them at anytime you may meet them.