Portsmouth and Winchester Diocesan Academies Trust

Members and Directors


What do Members and Directors (Trustees) do?

The Portsmouth and Winchester Diocesan Academies Trust (P&WDAT) is accountable to the Secretary of State for Education and Portsmouth and Winchester Diocesan Board of Education for the performance of those academies which form part of the Trust. This is with particularly with regards to standards of education, financial performance and fulfilment of other legal requirements, including the employment of staff and health and safety.


The 3 Members are akin to the shareholders of a company. They have ultimate control over the academy trust, with the ability to appoint the directors (trustees) and the right to amend the Trust’s Articles of Association.

Operational accountability is discharged by the Trust’s Directors who are also accountable for ensuring that the Trust meets its obligations under both the Companies Act and relevant Charity Commission frameworks.


The Members appoint the Directors. The term of office for all Trust Directors (excluding the Chief Executive Officer), is 4 years. One further term of 4 years can also be agreed by Members.

This useful document provides further information about governance in multi-academy trusts:

The Trust has established two sub committees:


Education and Standards

This sub committee monitors the effectiveness of educational provision including standards, of attainment and progress, attendance and exclusions, ethos and Christian distinctiveness in Trust academies. The sub-committee meets half-termly and is chaired by Graham Exon.



This sub committee monitors how effectively resources including finance, people and buildings are used to support the Trust’s work. The Trust has developed policies and procedures in order to comply with the Academies Financial Handbook. A link to the latest edition of the handbook can be found here: The sub-committee meets half-termly and is chaired by Cliff Taylor.


A Scheme of Delegation is in place with each individual Academy, in order to discharge some duties and responsibilities to Local Governing Bodies, their respective sub-committees and individual Academy Principals:



Further details about our governance arrangements can also be found on Get Information About Schools:

Trust Members and Directors (Trustees)


The  Directors named below are appointed by the Members.

The term of office for all Trust Directors (excluding the Chief Executive Officer), is 4 years. One further term of 4 years can also be agreed by Members.

Members and Directors interests can be found in the information section:

Members and Directors attendance at meetings can be found on the information section:


The Venerable Gavin Andrew Collins: Sponsor Director

Gavin is Archdeacon of the Meon and as such is responsible for the strategic direction, pastoral support and managerial and financial oversight of half of the mainland parishes in Portsmouth Diocese. 

Gavin brings considerable previous Trustee experience, most recently having served 9 years as a Trustee of the London School of Theology.  Prior to ordination, Gavin was a solicitor in the City of London, and so also brings legal and financial experience and an aptitude to his work with the Trust. Gavin is a member of the Resources sub-committee.

Date of appointment: 28/06/2016. Date term of office ends: 27/06/2020


Mr Graham Arthur Exon: Sponsor Director

With some 20 years experience in school governance, Graham has had significant involvement in both the maintained and independent sectors and is designated a National Leader of Governance. He is currently Chairman of the Governing Board at Talbot Heath Independent Girls School (ages 3 to 18) and chairs Bournemouth Schools' Forum. Graham is Chair of Bournemouth Septenary Trust, the Umbrella Trust of seven primary academies, having previously served as Chair of Governors at St Michael's Primary CE (VC) School, Bournemouth. He sits on admission appeal panels and is a member of the Strategic Board of Linwood Teaching School Alliance. He also works with the Diocesan Board of Education as part of the Associate Education Staff (Governance). Following a successful career in banking Graham was appointed Chair of Bournemouth Churches Housing Association and has served as a non-executive director of a number of local companies. He has significant experience within senior management and of corporate governance. Graham has also acted as a consultant to boards and trustees on dispute resolution and business planning.

Chair of P&WDAT Education & Standards sub-committee

Date of appointment: 25/08/2016. Date term of office ends: 24/08/2020


The Venerable Peter Leonard : Member and Chair of the Trust Board of Directors

Peter began his career in Marketing and Public Relations before responding to God's call to ordination in the Church of England. He trained at Trinity College, Bristol from 1994 and was ordained in 1997. He served in two parishes in the Guildford Diocese between 1997 and 2007, one a traditional wealthy middle class suburban parish and the other a partnership with the Methodist Church in an area of relative deprivation. He then responded to a call from God to be a teacher and so left the church to train as a primary school teacher. Peter taught in two schools becoming Head of School in a primary north of Portsmouth.

In 2014 he was appointed Canon Chancellor of Portsmouth Cathedral where he was responsible for the Education and Community Engagement program at the Cathedral. He has been a member of the General Synod of the Church of England since 2015, has been Chair of Governors for several primary schools and has been a trustee of OneBodyOneFaith since 2017. He became Archdeacon of The Isle of Wight in May 2019 and is passionate about the transformative power of education and is delighted to be involved in achieving that on the Island as part of the Portsmouth and Winchester Diocesan Academies Trust.


Mrs Fiona Perkins : Interim Chief Executive and Director

Fiona has had  a varied and successful  career in education, working across three local authorities and on the Isle of Wight. She has held the post of Headteaher in Infant, Lower and Primary Schools as well as that of Associate Lecturer in Education at her local University. Her Headteacher roles have been in Catholic and Church of England Schools as well as in Community Schools. Fiona was Principal of one of the Trust's Academies for a year and is currently working at St Blasius Academy on the Isle of Wight as its Principal.


Mr Andrew Ronald Robinson: Member

Andrew Robinson was appointed Chief Executive of the Diocese of Winchester in 2008. Working alongside the Bishop of Winchester, Andrew shares in the policy formation and leadership of the Diocese. He has a key role advising on strategy, policy and resources. He is responsible for the leadership and oversight of the staff employed by the Board across all of its business areas.

Since 2000 Andrew has been a commissioned officer in the Royal Naval Reserve (RNR) and has undertaken a variety of roles and operational deployments; between 2013 and 2017 he was the Naval Equerry to HRH Prince Michael of Kent, GCVO. In 2017 Andrew was appointed to head-up leadership strategy and development within the RNR.

Andrew is a Governor of Winchester University, an elected member of the Diocesan Secretaries Liaison Group, a Director of Winchester Social Enterprise, a member of the Hampshire Safeguarding Children Board, and Chairs the Local Authority funded Hampshire Good Neighbour Network. Andrew was appointed a lay Canon of Winchester Cathedral in 2012. Andrew has previously been a Director of an academy trust.

Date of appointment: 24/05/2018. Date term of office ends: N/A - Member


Mr Clifford Gerald Taylor: Sponsor Director

Cliff was a secondary school teacher early in his career, for 3 years at a large comprehensive school in Hove, and for 2 years in a small international school in Kenya, where he was appointed Acting Head during his second year. Since that time, he has spent more than 25 years in multinational companies, mostly in Human Resources. Cliff and his family have lived in several countries, including Kenya, Austria, the USA, Hong Kong, and Singapore, during which time Cliff has held roles with responsibilities across several countries in different regions. Cliff believes he brings experience and passion for coaching and developing people to be successful leaders, and in helping people across organizations in managing change for themselves and for others. He also has experience with governance across many organizations in many countries and different cultural settings, and is keen to learn how to apply this experience for the benefit of the Portsmouth & Winchester Diocesan Academies Trust. He is a member of the Resources sub-committee.

Vice Chair of the P&WDAT

Date of appointment: 04/06/2018. Date term of office ends: 03/06/2022


Mrs Victoria James: Member

I have worked for the Diocesan board of Finance, serving the parishes and communities since 2014. Most recently this has been as Diocesan Secretary since October 2018 which requires me to lead the team working from Peninsular House and manage the budget and governance of the charity  seeking that we grow in depth, impact and number. Prior to this I was the Diocesan Stewardship Adviser encouraging generosity as part of  our discipleship. 

I am a qualified solicitor and worked in private practice for a decade before joining the diocese. My passion during that time was working the field of matrimonial law with a particular specialism in domestic abuse and children cases. 

Date of appointment: July 2019. Date of term of office ends: N/A Member