Trustee Profiles

Mark Friday

Mark is the Chair of the Trust Board and Chair of the Finance & Resource Committee. Mark is a qualified Accountant who works as a Project Director for the Department of Education supporting the government’s delivery for capital investment programmes into schools.

Mark joined the Governing Body at Caludon Castle in March 2009 as a community Governor.
Prior to joining the Governing Body, Mark worked for Coventry City Council. One of his main responsibilities was to monitor the PFI contract arrangements to ensure the delivery of an effective facilities management service by the private sector on a day to day basis. Mark worked closely with the school during this period and when leaving the Council was subsequently asked to join the Governing Body and continue supporting the school.

Much of Mark’s spare time is spent as the Chairman and manager of 2 football teams at Ernesford Dynamos Junior football club.

Matthew Hanmer

Matthew joined the Trust Board as a Trustee on 13 March 2019. Matthew sits on the Finance & Resource Committee and the School Improvement Executive Group.

Matthew has global responsibility for MasterCard’s largest product line, mass credit. He previously held a number of senior product & commercial roles with Mastercard as well as Barclays & Citibank in a 20 year career in the Finance sector. Within these roles he developed significant strategy, finance, commercial, product & marketing skills & experience in both UK & global markets. Prior to this he worked in commercial roles in the Franchising & Insurance sectors. As well as Senior Management experience he sits on two Boards: Warwick Business School Board & as Trustee & Treasurer for Friends of Abington Park Charity.

Matthew holds an MBA from Warwick Business School where he conducted research into behavioural economics within joint ventures and strategic alliances. He has an MA in Philosophy, Politics & Economics from Keble College, Oxford University. He is Founder of the Warwick Finance Network and was appointed an Associate Fellow of The University of Warwick in 2016.

Kate Ireland

Kate sits on the Trust Board as a Trustee and also sits on the School Improvement Executive Group.

Kate has worked with Caludon Castle school for many years; in her previous role as senior school improvement adviser for Coventry Local Authority and more recently in regard to Initial Teacher Education.  Kate joined the governing body at Caludon Castle as community governor and is now in her second year as Chair of the Local Governing Body.

Kate has many years of experience of providing challenge and support to schools and has current and extensive experience of quality assurance and enhancement and the Ofsted inspection process. Kate brings to Caludon Castle and the Trust passion for the importance of learning and teaching, a commitment to exceptional quality of education and a drive to support and challenge the school leadership team to maximise the learning and educational experiences of all Caludon children and young people.

Academic Interests & Teaching & Learning Specialisms

  • Educational Policy
  • School Improvement and Effectiveness
  • Educational Leadership
  • System Leadership Organisational Change Culture

Publications & Projects between 2008-2018

  • Developing effective learners through Learning Conversations
  • Developing effective Initial Teacher Education Partnerships
  • Co-constructing and co-delivering effective subject knowledge and pedagogy
  • System Leadership development across Coventry Schools
  • Teacher Supply and Retention: A Partnership model

Neil Forrest

Neil joined the Trust Board on 18 October 2017 and sits on the Finance & Resource Committee. Neil is a qualified Solicitor who works as an in-house counsel for an IT company, supporting the full international legal requirements of the business for the sale of software into the financial services sector. Prior to qualifying as a solicitor Neil acquired 8 years industry experience in IT and Telecommunications. Neil gained experience as a software engineer, software architect, team leader and project manager working both within software houses and IT departments’ and telecommunications businesses.

Neil joined the Trust Board at Caludon Castle in October 2017 as a Trustee.

During his career Neil has worked across many industry sectors for major blue chip clients including telecommunications, utilities, automotive, airline, central government, manufacturing, financial services and education.

Neil’s spare time is spent partaking in and watching sport in particular rugby and cricket and looking after his two young children.

Peter Freeth

Peter joined the Trust Board as a Trustee on 13 March 2019. Peter sits on the HR & Governance Committee and the School Improvement Executive Group.

Peter has 17 years’ experience in developing leaders and organisational cultures, and prior to this, 17 years’ experience in the IT/telecoms industry, through the birth of both the Internet and mobile communication. Peter feels this gives him a rather unique perspective on human behaviour, and the impact of technology on society, both of which are vital in overcoming the challenges which lie ahead. He has written more than a dozen books on coaching, training, organisational change, leadership and management, and as he has charity trustee experience from a Midlands based musical charity, he feels he has value to add to Castle Phoenix Trust from a number of angles. Peter is also a Fellow of the RSA, a branch committee member of the CIPD and a keen traveller and photographer.

Paul Simpson

Paul joined the Trust Board on 31 January 2017 and is the Chair of the Audit & Risk Committee. Paul is a national process, compliance and risk manager for Royal Mail Sales.

Paul joined the Governing Body at Caludon Castle in January 2012 as a parent Governor and prior to joining Caludon, Paul had been a governor at Wyken Croft Primary School since October 2002 (10 years), covering all aspects of Primary & Early Years governance.

Paul utilises his knowledge of compliance and risk in the workplace to chair the Audit and Risk committee for the Castle Phoenix Trust, ensuring we remain vigilant against potential risks, ensuring we are compliant and able to function in a way conducive to the needs of the schools and the students, whilst remaining safe. Paul is a member of the Trust Board and also sits on Caludon’s Governor behaviour panel working with students and parents to create a plan of action to foster positive behaviour in school.

Much of Paul’s spare time is spent raising money for the local Charity, ‘Zoe’s Place Baby Hospice’ on behalf of ‘Strictly Christmas’, through dance and other forms of fundraising.

Shafiq Ahmed Sharif

Shafiq joined the Trust Board on 18 October 2017. Shafiq sits on the Audit & Risk Committee. Shafiq is a Chartered Marketing and Category Management professional with over 25 years in commerce and industry and has also served as an Executive Board Member on an industry trade association.

He has been an award winning Parent Governor and Chair of Governors at Anderton Park Primary School in Birmingham for 16 years where he was highly instrumental in its’ transformation and leading the school out of special measures.

He is currently a Member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing (MCIM), Master Fellow Member of the Institute of Sales Management (MISM), Non-Executive Director of Victoria Multi-Academy Trust in Smethwick, Birmingham and Committee Chair and Volunteer of the UKIM iCare Interfaith Food Aid Hubs in Birmingham.

Shafiq’s skill set includes; Marketing/Branding, Supply Chain/Procurement, Educational Leadership & Governance, General Management, Growth/Change Management and Strategic Planning.