Our Chair of Trustees Kate Hellard and the Clerk to the Trustees Ms Suzanne Cristinacce can be contacted through the Academy on 01373 462539.


Kate Hellard

Chair/ SEND Link Trustee appointed 11.9.18 - resigned as a member 15.7.21
Staff, Pupils & Wellbeing, Business & Finance and Quality of Education Committee

Kate Hellard comes into her governing role with over 20 years experience of working with children and young people; in schools, for a local authority as a development worker for disabled children and their families and with national and local charities. She has worked across B&NES, Somerset and Dorset with disabled children and young people, new travellers and more recently ran a large play organisation delivering play ranger sessions and other play services. Kate now works for Frome Town Council, where she is a Community Project Officer; supporting local organisations to become resilient to changes in funding and meet the challenges of rising demand for their services. She is also building participative projects across the town together with local organisations and residents. She is passionate about inclusion and participation and believes that experience is the key to enable children and adults to making informed choices; enabling everyone to affect positive change in their immediate and wider communites. Kate has four children at various stages of their education journey in Frome and has been a parent at Oakfield for 10 years with many more to come.

Barry Edwards

LA Trustee- appointed 1.5.2015
Resigned 11.2.2021

After a long career teaching English and in senior management roles in various schools, it is a great pleasure to be involved with Oakfield Academy as a Trustee. Since my retirement from Exeter School, I have become a Tour Manager for Great Rail Journeys and I am still actively involved in tutoring and examining. My main hobby is singing: nothing gives me greater pleasure than performing lovely music in cathedrals or other fine venues!

Ms Lesley Peat

Staff Trustee/DSL appointed 1.2.2014 resigned 12.10.2020
resigned 12.10.2020

Worked at Oakfield since 2002 when I started my teaching career. I am a Pastoral Team Leader in KS3, DT Co-Ordinator and also Child Protection lead. Prior to this I worked in the catering industry after completing a HND in Hotel Management which led to me running my own business for a number of years. I have also done voluntary work for Oxfam and other organisations before embarking on my University degree.

Claire Hopkins

LA Trustee appointed 1.9.2007
Staff, Pupils and Wellbeing Committee

Claire Hopkins runs her own consultancy business providing expertise in stakeholder engagement and change management, business development and customer success, project management and marketing. She has over 25 years’ experience and currently works with several software-as-a-service growth-stage businesses. She is currently a Director of RIVIAM Digital Care. Claire has previously held senior roles in both the private and public sector including as Head of Internal and Executive Communications for Dell EMEA, a Director at international marketing agency Hill and Knowlton and Marketing Director at business consultancy Ctrl-Shift. Claire has an MBA with distinction from the Bath School of Management and is a certified Project Manager. She has a great interest in digital and tech, privacy and trust, and how to help children build the skills they need to thrive in our increasingly digital and connected world. She is Chair of the Pay and Personnel Committee at Oakfield Academy, link governor for Quality of Education, and is delighted to be have been part of the governing body for the last 10 years.

Gary Smart

Co-opted Trustee & member- appointed pre 2000
Staff, Pupils and Wellbeing & Finance Committee

Gary is a member of the Wellbeing & Finance Committee & enjoys all the challenges being a trustee brings. I have been in business for 30 years and own two garages in Bath. I joined Oakfield as a parent governor in late 1998, initially to ask about and challenge parts of my eldest son’s education. I soon became aware how difficult it is to be a teacher/TA/administrator/cleaner/supervisor in a school. I enjoy being involved in the committees and taking an active part in decision-making. Now I have a granddaughter at Oakfield and still feel as passionate about the need to provide a safe and welcoming school where all children, no matter their ability or background, get an equal opportunity to succeed.

Kate Stewart

Staff Trustee- appointed 19.9.17. Resigned 12.10.2020
Resigned 12.10.2020

I have Worked at Oakfield since 2003 when I started my teaching career following 20 years working in theatre and TV. I am presently both Head of Art and Head of KS3. In my spare time I read, take lessons in pottery, visit art galleries and exhibitions and regularly attend the ballet and theatre.

Emma Wilkes

Headteacher - appointed 1.1.2014
Staff, Pupils and Wellbeing, Finance Committee & Quality of Education Committee

Emma Wilkes was appointed as Headteacher of Oakfield Academy in January 2014. She has previously been the Acting Headteacher, Deputy Headteacher and Assistant Headteacher at King Arthur's School in Wincanton, responsible for the whole school curriculum, timetables, staffing, options, examinations and results in particular. Prior to that she held the position of Head of Maths at Kingdown School in Warminster and Head of Year at Hengrove School in Bristol. She lives in the centre of Frome with her son Alex.

David McGrath

Deputy Head Teacher –Staff Trustee
Quality of Education & Business & Finance Committee

I am fascinated with learning and continuing to develop my own skill set. Having originally trained as a geography teacher I have now been at Oakfield for over 10 years. I am an avid sportsman and currently play for a number of sports teams across the South West focusing on football, touch rugby, golf and running. I have been playing guitar for almost 20 years and have recently challenged myself to learn the drums and piano with varying degrees of success! My wife and I love to travel and try to incorporate our passion for walking and food into our travels. We have recently returned from Vancouver Canada where we were able to climb Mount Blackcomb and Mount Whistler in a day, an exhausting but exhilarating experience!

Susannah Hill

Safeguarding Link Trustee-appointed 21.1.2020
Staff, Pupils and Wellbeing, Finance Committee & Quality of Education Committee

Marc Higgins

Vice Chair -appointed 15.10.2020. Parent Trustee appointed - 21.1.2020
Business & Finance Committee

I come to the role with 8 experience of being a governor at Trinity First School in Frome. During that time I was chair of the finance committee as well as taking on the position of vice chair of governors. With both my girls having left Trinity and moved on to Oakfield I felt it was time to move on to a new challenge an so took up this role at Oakfield. I have worked in Local Government since 2001 and have been at Bath and North East Somerset Council since 2004 currently as Head of the Leisure Team. My experience of the Public Sector and the way its finances work in particular have been useful in my role as a governor. I have managed budgets that are similar in size to the schools as well as large capital projects to improve public facilities. I am particularly interested in helping the school further develop its vision and strategy to maintain and drive high standards while having to ensure every penny is well spent to manage the very real financial challenges all schools are currently facing.

Tony Martin

Parent Trustee appointed - 21.1.2020 resigned 24.8.2020
resigned 24.8.2020

Christopher Salmon

Parent Trustee appointed - 18.12.2020

With a background in the media, I hope to use my experience to help Oakfield Academy build closer relationships with parents. These are tough times for schools, but I aim to be a passionate and committed supporter of Oakfield, and one who works hard to make a difference."

Neil Corcoran

Parent Trustee appointed - 18.12.2020
Staff, Pupils and Wellbeing committee

As a parent of Oakfield children and a volunteer in the education sector I understand the need for help and support from the community and as a Parent Trustee I intend to assist with the continuing development and improvement of standards within a school close to my heart. In my career as an R&D scientist I have gained valuable skills in project and personnel management as well as problem solving and safety/risk assessment. I plan to use my time to help towards the continued effective running of the school."

Matthew Hill

Co-opted Trustee- appointed 11.2.21
Resigned 5.5.21

I am currently a Deputy Headteacher and Special Needs Co-ordinator in a Pupil Referral Unit. I have 21 years teaching experience, most of which was in a large secondary school. During this time I have had a variety of roles that have developed many of the skills and attributes I feel that I can bring to the role of trustee: SEND experience, Leadership & Management and also Safeguarding. The role of Parent Trustee is a very important role and one that interests me as I would like to support Oakfield on its educational journey and in turn help my children and the community of families that Oakfield serves.

Kathy Pinches

Staff Trustee Appointed 26.4.21

“Kathy has been a member of staff at Oakfield since 2013. This followed a significant career change after many years in Finance (she is a Chartered Accountant) – a change she is very pleased to have made. She is committed to Oakfield’s aim to enable EVERY pupil at the Academy to achieve their full potential…and to encourage a lifelong love of learning. As a staff trustee, Kathy hopes to use her skills in both education and finance to support the Academy in achieving these aims in whatever way she can. On a personal note, Kathy enjoys music of all genres. She sings in a community choir and her Covid lockdown project has been to learn the oboe – lifelong learning in action!”


William de Bolla

Vice Chair - appointed 11.7.2017-resigned as Vice Chair Sept 2020- resigned as a Trustee 10.7.2021
Appointed as a member 15.7.21

Will became a trustee at Oakfield Academy in 2017, as part of a personal desire to use his skills to help the local community. With a Maths degree and a professional career covering Management Consultancy and now Data Science, he is approachable, analytical, and likes using data to drive decision making. He is a big believer in opportunity for everyone, and that every child is capable of achievement with the right support. Outside of work he loves playing and watching sport, and enjoys explaining maths, science and programming to anyone who’ll listen.

Sarah Hynds

Vice Chair & Community Trustee- appointed pre 2000, resigned as a Trustee 21.1.2020
Member from 21.1.2020

I have been honoured and proud to be associated with Oakfield Academy since 1993, first as a parent and then as a Trustee. I have held the office of Vice Chair and also Chair. I live and work in Frome as a Child-minder and also as a Family Support worker for Somerset getset services. I am passionate about ensuring that at Oakfield Academy we provide opportunities and support for all our young people in the community, to enable them to flourish and be the best that they can be.

Tim Cutting

appointed 1.1.09, resigned as a Trustee 21.1.2020
Member from 21.1.2020

Tim Cutting is 66 years old, retired and lives in Frome. In 2001 he sold his share in a manufacturing business that he started with his wife and which grew to become a thriving commercial success. Since coming to Frome in 2006 he has studied for and gained an MSc in Architecture (Advanced Energy and Environmental Studies) at the Centre for Alternative Technology (CAT). He was a trustee and Board member of ECOS Trust and ECOS Homes, and is currently a director of Frome Renewable Energy Cooperative (FRECO), Frome Cohousing CIC and the Carley Development Trust CIC. Stepped down as Chair of Governors July 2018.


Oakfield Trustees

Committees - Attendance and Business Interests

Trustee/member Name


Date of Appointment

Date of Renewal


No of Meetings Attended 2019-2020

No of Meetings

Attended 2020-2021

Pecuniary Interests

Mr Tim Cutting


1/1/09, resigned as a Trustee 21.1.2020. Now a memebr





Frome Co Housing CIC

Mrs Kate Hellard

Chair of Board



Staff, Pupils and Wellbeing, Finance and Quality of Education Committee



Frome Town Council (Employee)

Mr Barry Edwards


1/5/15- resigned 11.02.21


Staff, Pupils and Wellbeing Committee



Trustee of Frome Museum

Mrs Claire Hopkins




Staff, Pupils and Wellbeing Committee



Claire Hopkins Ltd. Business and Marketing Consultancy

Mrs S Hynds


Pre 2000, resigned as a Trustee 21.1.2020- now a memebr





Son teaches music

Mr D McGrath




Quality of Education Committee




Ms L Peat


1/2/14 resigned 12.10.2020






Mr G Smart

Parent Trustee

Pre 2000


Staff, Pupils and Wellbeing & Finance Committee




Mrs E Wilkes

Head Teacher



Staff, Pupils and Wellbeing, Finance and Quality of Education Committee



Senior Independent Director at Somerset Activity & Sports Partnership.

Mr William de Bolla


11/7/17- resigned as a trusstee 10.7.21 now a memeber


Finance and Quality of Education Committee




Ms K Stewart

Staff Trustee

19/9/17-resigned 12.10.2020






Mrs Susannah Hill

Safeguarding Link Trustee



Pupils, Staff and Wellbeing, Finance and Quality of Education Committee




Mr Marc Higgins

Vice Chair/Parent Trustee






Wife is SENDCo at Oakfield Academy

Mr Tony Martin

Parent Trustee

21/01/2020-resigned 24.8.2020




Mr Matthew Hill Co-opted Trustee


resigned April 21

      1 Deputy Head at Tor School (PRU)
Mr Neil Corcoron Parent Trustee 18.12.2020   Finance Committee   8 None
Mr Christopher Salmon Parent Trustee 18.12.2020   Finance Committee   5 Wife is a governor at St John's school Frome.
Mrs Kathi Pinches School Trustee 26.4.21   Finance Committee   4 None