Academy trusts are founded by Members who have a general duty to exercise their powers, to further the academy trust’s charitable purpose. Members provide independent oversight to the work of the board of trustees to ensure suitable accountability for decision making and strategy.
Martin Lawrence MBE has been supporting school governing boards for more than twenty years. He has also been a governor at a wide range of schools, including vice-chair of Sponne Academy. He was the Leadership and Governance Adviser for Northamptonshire County Council from 2000 until 2013 and vice-chair of the National Co-ordinators of Governor Services.
Martin is a director of GLM, the not for profit organisation that accredits schools with Governor Mark and is a trustee of Governors for Schools, a national charity recruiting, training and supporting school governors. Martin has worked with more than 300 governing boards, undertaken 32 external governance reviews and overseen the work of 10 interim executive boards. He is a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Educators in the City of London.
Christopher Watt was a founding Member of Tove Learning Trust and is Chair of Trustees. Chris has extensive experience of being a governor for over 20 years at Sponne, with 11 years being Chair of Governors. He has seen the school through foundation, trust and then academy status. Chris was previously Chair of Governors for 5 years at a primary school. Chris is an active trustee representative on many of the local governing bodies and leads the Chairs of Governors group across the MAT.
- 15 years as director and shareholder of a privately owned corporate finance company. Role included business recovery and restructuring, HR, debt recovery and premises management.
- 5 years as a business recovery specialist.
Born in India in 1946, Lord Edmiston, the son of a war time fighter pilot, came to the UK at the age of three and subsequently spent five years in Kenya before returning to the UK in 1962. He started his career as a Bank Clerk but today owns companies in the property, motor and finance sectors with a combined turnover of approximately £650 million.
The I M Group of companies have activities that include importing various car marques into Ireland, Sweden, Finland, Denmark and the Baltics, and has a Beijing office which, in addition to developing Group interests, operates as a consultancy to industry generally, acting as a trading house and as a procurement office on behalf of third party clients.
Lord Edmiston is a father of a grown-up family, has ten grandchildren and three great grandchildren. He married Lady Tracie in 1998. Together in 1988 they had founded CV, an international charity with offices in 22 countries. Lord and Lady Edmiston have sponsored three senior schools.
Lord Edmiston, having been a member of the House of Lords, retired in July 2015 to devote more time to his charitable activities.
Lady Edmiston was born in the UK where she spent most of her adult life. Tracie grew up with a strong work ethic and the importance of doing good to others as one of her key life principles.
At the age of 22, she became responsible for a programme to assist long term unemployed adults retrain and secure full-time employment, education or selfemployment. As Managing Director of the Agency, she was responsible for 80 employees and a variety of community schemes.
In 1988 Tracie accepted a post to work for Bob Edmiston to assist him in setting up an international charity. As the MD of ‘Christian Vision’, Tracie travelled into many war-torn and poverty-stricken nations setting up projects. Since their marriage in 1998, the day to day operations have been handed over, but today Tracie is the Executive Trustee.
Lord and Lady Edmiston’s life is varied involving, charity, politics, business, schools, family and travel.
Details to follow.