Inspiring, nurturing and empowering young people with a vision impairment.


Trustee Governors

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Pat Dyson Chair of Governors and Designated Safeguarding Governor
Pat retired from her role of Executive Principal of Sense College at the end of March 2023. In this role Pat had strategic responsibility for two post-16 Independent Specialist Colleges, who work with students with special educational needs and disabilities. Throughout her career Pat has undertaken a number of non-executive roles in local and national disability charities alongside her employed roles. In addition to being Chair of Governors for New College Worcester, Pat is also Chair of Governors for Hereward College, Coventry. Pat`s employment history is 27 years in the public sector, in civil service and local authority senior management roles, with a further 18 years` experience in the voluntary sector working in local and national charities. Additional roles previously undertaken include part-time inspection roles for the Adult Learning Inspectorate and Ofsted, inspecting post 16 specialist education and employment provision.
Rachel Perks

Principal, Trustee Governor and DDSL, Rachel Perks

Rachel joined NCW in September 2022. Her previous role was as Headteacher for another Worcestershire residential special school and so she has a great deal of experience in the education of children and young people with special educational needs.

Philippa Simkiss

Governor, Philippa Simkiss

Whilst working as an engineer, Philippa began supporting blind people to retrain, following redundancy due to the introduction of computer-controlled machinery.
Since then, she has established award-winning employability programmes that operate internationally and has led research, policy and fundraising teams in national charities. She now works as an independent consultant, committed to enabling people to reach their potential. At NCW this means listening to students and helping them to follow their dreams.

Mary Russell

Governor, Mary Russell

Mary is pleased to be able to use her skills as a previous optometrist and rehabilitation worker for visually impaired people as a Trustee Governor at New College Worcester. Mary is no stranger to specialist VI provision, having taught ILS and Mobility for more than 8 years in a residential setting. Mary has at different stages been a parent governor and a staff governor in different fields, and feels very welcome in this vibrant community with its holistic approach.

Steve Tyler

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Steve is Director of Assistive Technology at Leonard Cheshire and has led a range of service and product developments over many years in the sector – from the speech system that drives Amazon’s Alexa and Kindle products to accessible ATM’s and access to TV. He is married with two children and has many interests outside of work – fragrance and coffee roasting being two of them.

Linda Morris

Having Graduated from Loughborough University, Linda Morris joined the NHS as a trainee Financial Manager in 1975. After qualifying, she spent a spell as assistant treasurer at Powys Heath Authority before relocating to the South East. Having worked in all sectors of the NHS, she was appointed as Director of Finance and Business Development for Royal Berkshire Ambulance Trust in 1992 and later moved into Health Commissioning roles in Berkshire and Buckinghamshire. Having spent more than 25 years at board level, she is particularly interested in corporate governance and risk. She is a Trustee and treasurer of a learning disability charity in Gloucestershire. There is a family history of blindness and vision impairment on both sides of the family, so she is delighted to be able to support the work of the college.

Tim Lawrence

Tim is retired after a 44 year career as a Chartered Surveyor specialising in residential development and estate management. In that time Tim held senior UK positions in the corporate world, including at Taylor Wimpey, a FTSE 100 company. His last 13 years were at Savills during when he acted as a consultant to NCW. Tim is particularly pleased to continue his relationship with NCW as a governor to help achieve its objectives. Interests include walking, golf, classic cars and skiing.

Adrian Price

Adrian Price

Adrian is the headteacher at George Salter Academy in West Bromwich, a large multi-ethnic school with over 1400 students. Prior to this headship he was headteacher at Tenbury High in West Worcestershire. Adrian completed his National Professional Qualification for Executive Leaders NPQEL in 2020 and has recently completed a level 7 Executive Coaching and Mentoring postgraduate. Adrian is a French teacher and can also speak Spanish and conversational Thai having spent two years living and working on the Eastern seaboard of Thailand (some time ago). When not working Adrian is a keen runner and has completed many 10K races and half marathons, albeit quite slowly, including our very own Worcester version. For his sins he is a lifelong Villa fan.

Lisa Mauro-Bracken

Lisa Mauro-Bracken

Lisa lives in Worcester and is originally from New York in the United States. She has a background in international public health and spent over 10 years living and working in Pacific Island nations running programmes to promote health and well-being with local communities. She is also Irish through marriage and spent 9 years in Ireland working closely with asylum seekers and refugees where she was able to use her skills to promote positive relationships across diverse communities. She is currently the Head of Department of Health and Well-being in the School of Allied Health and Community, University of Worcester. As Head of Department and Principal Lecturer she is committed to inclusive, student-centred learning and has supported several students over the past 12 years with a variety of learning needs, including 2 graduates from NCW. Her research interests centre around the links between wellbeing and the impact of transition into higher education. She is passionate about ensuring students are involved in decisions regarding their support and adjustments and interacts closely with student services to enable the best outcomes. She values the diversity of the students and staff she works with and actively works to create an inclusive learning/working environment.

Katharine Gorick

Katherine Gorick - Governor

Katharine has more than 20 years’ experience of working as a Qualified Teacher of the Vision Impaired. She has supported children and young people with VI of all ages in a variety of mainstream and special school settings. For 9 years she was County Lead of the Oxfordshire Vision Impairment Team.  During this time she was the Local Authority representative for the pupils with VI who attended specialist out of county settings and she visited NCW regularly. She is pleased to be maintaining her links with the world of VI education and hopes it will encourage her to keep up her braille skills!

Sian Sweeney

Sian SweeneySian qualified as a Chartered Accountant with Ernst and Young and has over 30 years experience working in a variety of financial roles in different industries, most recently as Financial Director for an international engineering group.

Her interests outside work include hill walking, camping and quilting.

James Auden


James joined the NCW Governing Board in September 2023, bringing over twenty years of teaching mainly in Primary and Secondary phase and business experience, most of this based locally in the Independent Sector. James has experience in Education Management as a Head of Department in the primary phase and more recently, qualified as a School Business Manager. He has served as a Multi Academy Trust Director and Hereford Diocese Foundation Governor in Shropshire, becoming a member of the Diocesan Education Board in Hereford. James also owns and runs his own property management company, a role he has fulfilled for thirteen years.
James has an interest in charity fundraising, having worked briefly in the hospice movement as a Community Fundraiser. He currently works for St Richard’s Hospice as a Relief Shop Manager across Worcestershire and Gloucestershire ‘to experience retail- an entirely different world day-to-day’.
In his spare time, James has a passion for cooking and enjoys gardening, textile crafting and walking and divides his time between Worcester, Devon and Lincolnshire with his fiancé, John.

Peter Cheer

Peter is an associate governor.

Chris Clark

Chris ClarkChris joins NCW as parent governor. He brings seventeen years of experience working in IT within the life sciences and technology industry, and over ten years leadership experience in customer relations supporting colleagues and clients across the globe.  Chris is currently a Senior leader for a leading Life Sciences Software as a Service (SaaS) vendor leading a large team across Europe and Asia. Chris is married and a father to two daughters, one born with a severe visual impairment (SVI) and a pupil attending NCW. Chris is passionate in supporting young people with a VI to access an appropriate and inclusive education.  Chris enjoys badminton and golf although has not played regularly since becoming a father!


NCW Staff Governors

Emma Williams

Emma Williams - Teacher Governor

Teacher Governor
I work as part of the NCW Independent living skills team as a teacher of activities for daily living. My role is to equip our 6th form students with the knowledge and skills they need to live independently in the future.  I was a student at NCW from 1989 – 1995 and then returned to my home town of Fareham where I completed a B.Tec in Childhood studies. I went on to work in various preschool settings. I am married with one son and in my spare time I sing in a community choir. I love to read and have been an avid fan of The Archers for the last 30 years. I have worked at NCW since 2014, firstly running the youth club and since 2019 I have thrown myself into my current role which I thoroughly enjoy.  

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