(Chair of the Board, Chair of Strategic Planning Committee) Although a true Geordie, Kevin has lived in Skipton for almost a quarter of a century! Kevin is an accountant and until he retired in 2010 worked as a director with the accounting firm KPMG. Throughout his career he has worked with many public sector bodies including those in education, local government and the NHS. His work has encompassed audit, accounting and advisory work with the whole range. One of his particular professional interests is how we ensure quality in the provision of public sector services. Outside work, Kevin is a regular writer for a blues music magazine and a keen cyclist and walker. He is also an angler with a particular passion for big game fishing. As a Geordie he is emotionally tied to Newcastle United, a bond which has led to many years of disappointment. He is also current President of Skipton Rotary club.
(Vice-Chair of the Board, Chair Compliance Committee)Fiona spent most of her career working in the Chemical Waste Processing Industry after graduating from Newcastle University in 1988. For many years she managed chemical plants across the UK before moving to the Skipton area 9 years ago to make a major career change and move into Medical Recruitment. In 2005 she became a Director in the NHS working for a Special Health Authority. She is currently Managing Director of a Medical Recruitment Business based on the Isle of Man and last year they opened a new office in Skipton Fiona has always had an interest in education and was a mentor to a number of secondary school children in Paisley through a scheme run by Renfrewshire Enterprise. She also had a voluntary role with the Chemical Industry Association and mentored their “Young Person of the Year” for a number of years. This role included promoting sciences to school children and was something she very much enjoyed. Fiona is married to Gordon and has three children aged 13, 15 and 17. She likes to spend whatever spare time she has with her family and is a great supporter of Upper Wharfedale Rugby Club where her youngest son and daughter both play
Robert Bellfield is the Principal and is responsible for the overall running of Craven College, ensuring that we continue to enrich lives through learning. He oversees the college’s strategic direction and is responsible for the efficient and effective day-to-day running of the organisation, ensuring budgets are adhered to and continuing to develop the high-quality provision of Craven College. Robert has worked in Further Education for almost 30 years, starting his career as a teacher of Agriculture at Northumberland College of Agriculture and most recently was director of Resources for Learning at Aberdeen College. He holds a BSc (Hons) Agriculture degree from the University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne and in 2008 obtained his MBA through the Open University. Actively involved in both educational and environmental associations, Robert is currently a Director of the Environmental Association of Universities & Colleges (EAUC). He has spent 14 years as an Associate Assessor for Education Scotland, reviewing and reporting on the performance of Scotland’s colleges. Born near Wakefield and now living in Settle, he knows the area well, but also brings valuable experience in education from other parts of the UK.
(Chair Search & Governance Committee) is a television producer, broadcaster, journalist and creator of TV channels throughout the world. He was born in Leeds, trained as a teacher, but decided to communicate to bigger audiences. He has many years of experience in broadcast, satellite and cable television and a great track record in launching and managing TV stations. Passionate about canals, photography, pin-ball machines and the apostrophe!
(Chair, Audit Committee) Penny is currently an Audit Manager at the Skipton Building Society, having joined them after a varied background in banking and operations. Penny joined the College as a Governor in 2010 after a period as a co-opted member of the Audit Committee.
(Chair, Curriculum Quality and Standards Committee)Helen started professional life in book publishing working as an editor, then a commissioning editor, for companies in the UK and USA, latterly working on children's and young adults' educational books. She left the world of publishing to set up her own retail and mail order business in 1991, later selling it as a going concern after the birth of her first son. Since the birth of her second son in 1998, Helen has held a variety of roles in the voluntary and community sector, largely connected to the world of education. She has been both a parent and a community governor in a variety of schools and has represented the National Governors' Association. After having acted as a national education campaigner and lobbyist for several years, she decided to stand for Parliament, representing the Liberal Democrats, at the 2010 General Election in an attempt to become MP for Skipton & Ripon. She currently is the Lib Dem Parliamentary Spokesperson for Skipton & Ripon and is a member of the Executive of the Lib Dem Education Association, where she has served and continues to serve on working parties to formulate new policy around education and young people in general. Helen lives in Nidderdale on a smallholding with her family and is passionate about poultry and fowl! She currently tends 20 chickens and 7 guinea fowl, and is hoping to graduate to pea fowl if the neighbours can stand it! Helen has always been firmly tied to Yorkshire, having been born and bred and Wakefield, and is very happy to have settled for good in North Yorkshire, amongst some of England's most beautiful countryside.
Andrew is a Partner with Bernard Williams Associates who are a medium sized national Quantity Surveying Practice. He is based in and runs their Leeds and Barnsley offices. He is a member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and has a BSc (Hons) degree. Andrew lives in Ilkley and through his involvement with Round Table has been involved with several local community and charity groups. He also provides professional property and construction advice to many education, arts, heritage and community organisations throughout the Yorkshire area. He is also a keen golfer and walker when time permits.
Initially a primary teacher and head teacher he later moved to Yorkshire to work in higher education. Here he was involved in the initial training of teachers and the provision of in-service training for serving teachers. He has an MA in the teaching and learning of reading skills and has contributed to adult literacy provision and the formation of a centre for the development of language skills. He joined the National Inspectorate as an HMI and for the next twelve years was involved in the assessment of educational provision in schools, colleges and universities. He then worked as a consultant specialising in primary and teacher education and visited America and conducted a detailed evaluation of educational provision in Macedonia for UNICEF. Although he has lived in Yorkshire for many years, Brian retains a strong tribal loyalty to his native Cumbria, especially through his unswerving support for the rugby and soccer clubs of Carlisle.
Chris Knowles-Fitton is a Dalesman, born and bred, married to Pam with four children and three grandsons. He helps Pam run her successful B. & B. is still in the clothing trade and has been a Craven District Councillor since 2000. He graduated from Leeds University in Textiles and has been self-employed since his mid twenties.
Mark O’Neill is the Headteacher of Aireville school, a post he has held since January 2009. Before coming to Skipton he has held a range of posts in both Lancashire any Yorkshire, including a period as part of a team supporting a school in the centre of Leeds and as the Deputy Headteacher of a school in Dewsbury. Before entering the teaching profession he worked as a youth worker in inner city London and Manchester and then studied for a degree in Education at Liverpool Polytechnic graduating in 1991. He is married with two teenage sons and enjoys walking, reading, history and film.
Paul has worked in Education and Training all his life, first in teaching 16-19 year-old students, and then in Careers work in West Yorkshire. He then worked in North Yorkshire for the previous Training and Enterprise Council and the LSC before moving to Craven College in 2005. After a hectic and enjoyable five and a half years of bids and projects, he retired as Manager of the College’s Funding Development team in 2010. Born in Oxfordshire, he attended York and Cambridge Universities, although Paul has now spent by far the greater part of his life in Yorkshire. With two grown up children, his current challenge, in partnership with his wife, is to create a productive and attractive garden at their home on the windswept slopes of Pennine Huddersfield
(Teaching Staff Governor) A full time employee at the college for the past four years, prior to this Kevin served in the Royal Marines and saw active service in the Falklands conflict, 3 tours of duty in Northern Ireland and operational duties in the Far East before spending 2 years attached to British Special Forces responsible for anti-terrorist duties and safeguarding the UK’s oil and gas installations in the North Sea. After a short spell with the Intelligence Surveillance units in the Metropolitan Police Kevin entered the private security industry and held two Directorships with Cyrus International and Cyrus Global Resources in the Middle East and Moscow respectively. Before entering education Kevin was a senior research analyst at the Centre for Defence and Security Studies a subsidiary group working primarily for the United Nations. He has a 1st class honours degree from the University of York and is contemplating doctorial studies on the influence of the World Wide Web and terrorist recruitment.
(Chair Finance, Resources and Investment Committee) David is a Mechanical Engineer. After his engineering training with Rolls Royce he joined Shell International and spent 33 years living and working in Borneo, Nigeria, Syria, Russia, The Netherlands and the UK. He has a wide business experience working with diverse groups of people and holds a Post Graduate Diploma in Management. In his last job in the Netherlands, prior to retiring in 2010, he was responsible for the technical Learning of Shell Exploration and Production global Surface Engineering staff. David is married with three grown up children and lives in Giggleswick. He enjoys running (half marathons) and mountain biking and is a keen follower of F1 Motor Racing. He also sings in the local choir.
Sue was appointed in March 2012 and is currently Director of Human Resources at Incommunities Group Ltd, a housing association in Bradford; a job which encompasses employee resourcing, employment legislation, learning and development and health and safety. Linked to her role in the Housing Sector, Sue is a member of the Board of the Asset Skills, the Sector Skills Council covering Housing, which focuses upon improving the skills of employees. She has held a variety of different HR roles in local authorities, including Birmingham City Council and Craven District Council, which meant transferring from one of the biggest local authorities to one of the smallest. She says this was a bit of a shock to the system, but offered just as much job satisfaction. This job move enabled Sue to return to her roots and family in Skipton, which she always planned to do - it just took 17 years longer than anticipated! Sue's hobbies include cooking, reading, the theatre and walking but she is currently juggling her time, not entirely successfully, with further studying.
Alan Halsall was appointed to the Board in March 2012 and is currently Executive Chairman of Silver Cross. Alan qualified as a Solicitor in 1978 after graduating with a Law Degree from Newcastle University in 1972. After just 1 year in the Profession he joined the Family Toy Business which he took from about 1m sales upto about 80m before selling it to the Management team in 2006. Acquiring the Silver Cross brand from the receiver he has set up the HQ for the Business in Skipton and also now has subsidiary offices near Shanghai and HK. Silver Cross is exported to 33 different countries and are the only remaining UK manufacturer of Prams. Alan has founded locally the Skipton and Ripon Enterprise Group offering mentoring to businesses large and small. Living in Lytham with 2 grown up children he has a passion for horse racing.
(Business Support Staff Governor)Gary works as a member of the Technology Services team and was elected as a representative of the business support staff in October 2012. Gary has worked for the technical services department in College since 2002 after serving 25 years in the Royal Navy. During that time he has been from the Arctic to Antarctic, Hong Kong to USA and has seen Rockall. He completed his honours degree in mathematics and computing sciences in his spare time in a variety of places from an aircraft carrier in the Bosnian conflict, to the beaches of Ayia Napa. He is also a magistrate at Bradford courts and shares a keen interest in motorcycles with his wife Janice.
Adam is a Chartered Accountant and Director with the Shepherd Partnership in Skipton. He lives in Skipton and has two children, both at local schools. He is a keen sportsman in his spare time, enjoying running, skiing and golf.