The Governing Body

Outstanding Governing Body of the Year

The Governing Body of Bowdon Preparatory School for Girls comprises a group of professionals who are all committed to the aims and ethos of the school. They bring expertise in education, child protection, business management, finance, law, property and human resources. The majority have long-standing connections with the school as parents of previous pupils or as senior members of staff.

The governors are also Trustees of Bowdon Preparatory School Limited, which is a charity (Charity No.1142325) and a company limited by guarantee (No. 07577822), registered in England at the following address: Ashley Road, Altrincham, Cheshire WA14 2LT, UK.

The Governing Body meets regularly and has a good grasp of the school and its situation and opportunities. The governors work well as a team, giving good direction, and they are forward thinking and happy to delegate as appropriate.

Mrs Gillian Healey (Chair)

Mrs Healey's daughters attended Bowdon Preparatory School and she was a member of the Parents' Society during their time in the school; in addition she is herself an 'old girl'. For many years, Mrs Healey was Company Secretary of Burtonwood Brewery PLC, a brewery and pub company.

Mr Ian Pinnington (joint Vice-Chair)

Mr Pinnington's daughter attended Bowdon Preparatory School in the 1980s and his granddaughter is presently in the Infants. Mr Pinnington is a Chartered Accountant and Company Secretary and having spent most of his working life as a Financial Director in the brewing and construction industries, he has more recently spent time working in the University sector.

Mrs Clare Withey (joint Vice-Chair)

Mrs Withey’s daughter attended Bowdon Preparatory School until 2015. Mrs Withey trained and worked as a Chartered Accountant for a number of years. She has been involved with the school’s Parents’ Society for many years, acting as Secretary and later, Chair.

Mrs Marysia Bocquet

Mrs Bocquet has taught history for many years at a number of schools throughout the UK, latterly 12 years at Altrincham Grammar School for Girls. She is currently the Student Progression Manager at Connell Sixth Form College in East Manchester, part of the Bright Futures Education Trust, where she deals with university applications, apprenticeships and career guidance. 

Mr Mark Haywood

Mr Haywood's daughter has recently left Bowdon Preparatory School for secondary school. Mr Haywood is a solicitor specialising in real estate and has worked as a partner in Central Manchester for 18 years.

Dr Tessa Myatt

Dr Myatt’s daughter has recently left Bowdon Preparatory School for secondary school, having started in the Kindergarten. Dr Myatt is a Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist and Associate Medical Director with a local NHS Trust, and brings specialist safeguarding expertise to the governing body.

Mr John Stevenson

Mr Stevenson’s daughter is a pupil at Bowdon Preparatory School. Mr Stevenson is a qualified Chartered Accountant and has held a number of roles in practice and industry, before moving into stockbroking in 2000. He is an equity analyst and partner at an independent stockbroker in the City.

Mrs Catriona Ashurst

Mrs Ashurst is Assistant Head at The Manchester Grammar Junior School. In her role, she is responsible for the Maths curriculum; this includes using assessment and tracking data and developing the curriculum. She has a keen interest in Educational Research since completion of a Masters in Education and completes research within her role at The Manchester Grammar Junior School.

Mrs Sue Rylands

Mrs Rylands has worked for British Airways as Cabin Crew and Employee Shares Consultant and latterly with British Aerospace, involved in Sales/Marketing worldwide tours and training overseas cabin crew. Her voluntary work includes NSPCC, Business Mentor at Knutsford High School and six years on the Youth Offending Team panel. She is an old girl from Culcheth Hall and believes if we can provide children with a good education, then we have given them the opportunity to develop and reach their potential.

Mrs Jennie Duschenes

Mrs Duschenes’ two daughters attended BPS until recently and she was a member of the Parents’ Society during their time at the school. She worked in Financial PR in the City of London and then as Communications Director of Braemar Group PLC whilst qualifying and practicing as an antenatal teacher with the NCT. She has also served as a Governor of UHSM (Wythenshawe Hospital). She is currently a director of corporate finance company Bayfield Capital.


We are delighted that Bowdon Prep was successful in being awarded the prestigious title of Outstanding Governing Body of the Year in the 5th annual Independent School Awards 2014. The Independent School Awards celebrate excellence in the strategic and financial management of independent schools in the UK. Hundreds of nominations for outstanding schools, departments and individuals were submitted across 12 categories, covering the full range of independent school activity.