Founder and CEO Concept Education
Hugh Dickinson was educated at Stonyhurst College and has a degree in Classics from Bristol University as well as an LLB from the College of Law. After university he served for six years as an officer in the Irish Guards (including one year at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst) deploying on operations to Bosnia, Northern Ireland and Afghanistan.
After the Army, Hugh trained as a solicitor at Ashurst and then joined BlueBay Asset Management in 2013 as Fund Legal and Product Development Manager.
His interest in education developed during his time training young soldiers in the Army and has remained with him throughout his subsequent career in law and finance.
Through his work on The Boarding Project and as a governor at Downside, Hugh has developed a deep insight into current trends of the boarding school market and the competitor universe. Hugh is married to Melody and lives in West London with his wife and two young children
The Advisory Board exists in order to provide educational and commercial expertise to the project.
Anthony has been a freelance consultant
since 2015, working mainly with RS
Academics assisting independent schools with the appointment of Heads, Bursars and leading strategy projects. He has also helped governors by appraising heads and leadership teams. Anthony spent 13 successful years
as headmaster of Aysgarth School, the leading boys’ boarding prep school in the north of England. Prior to this he was an Associate Partner at Accenture, working as a strategy consultant.
His knowledge of the chemical industry was acquired through 21 years at ICI culminating in the post of Sales & Marketing Director of ICI Chemicals & Polymers. He has governed four boarding schools, and is currently a governor of two. Anthony was educated at Radley College and Cambridge University where he gained an MA in Geography. He is a qualified Leadership Coach. He is married with 3 children.
Aly owns and manages Country Court Care which has more than 30 care homes across the UK. He was educated at Oundle School and studied his LLB at BPP law school before joining the business in 2005. During his time within the Company, Aly has been passionate in his vision; to improve quality of care and hospitality within the sector and is proud for Country Court Care to now be considered as market leaders in the luxury care market.
Having expanded from five Homes in 2005, Aly is acutely aware of the challenges presented by growth in a highly regulated sector and has experience of implementing systems and processes to ensure quality is never compromised. Aly is the Chairman of Oundle Rugby Club where he also captained the first team for several years.
Jessica is the Head of Queen Margaret’s School, York which is the only girls full boarding school in the North of England. Jessica is the first female Head of Queen Margaret’s since 1982. Prior to this she spent seven years as Deputy Head of Leweston School in Dorset and 11 years teaching at Dulwich College, London during which time she rose to be
Deputy Head of the Upper School, Head of Lower Sixth and Head of Spanish. Jessica was educated at Farnborough Hill School and Oxford University.
Grace is a director of the Education Consultants at the Good Schools Guide. She has a wealth
of experience in education in the UK having visited about a hundred schools for the Good Schools Guide since 2004. She is very familiar with education provision in the UK and has also run her own advisory, Moodystuart Advisory, helping parents to identify the right school for their child, assisting them with the process and securing the best outcome. Her clients include UK clients from a variety of backgrounds some who live in the UK, others who are moving here from abroad, as well as International families from all parts of the world, including the USA, Europe, Australia, the Far East and the Middle East.
Grace read Classics at Cambridge and practised as a Barrister at Outer Temple Chambers until 2003. She then spent seven years teaching Classics at Sussex House School where she was also Assistant Director of Studies responsible for advising parents about senior schools, and writing the reports for senior school on each child. She has four school-age children and lives in West London.
Francesca is the founder of the Italian School in London and is also a PR and marketing consultant. She started her career as a magazine and book producer for a publisher in London. Subsequently she specialised in the production of promotional events for the SMH-Swatch Group. She put together a group of volunteers and opened the Italian School in 2010 where she was Chair of the board of Trustees until last September.
She still sits on the board as leader of the business development team. She has a degree in Philosophy and Modern Languages (French) at Oxford University. Francesca is the Local Authority governor of St Francis of Assisi Primary School in London.
Will is the founder and a director of Keystone Tutors. Will attended Harrow School and Oxford University. After Oxford he taught history at Fulham Prep School. He set up Keystone Tutors in 2007 and has established it as one of the UK’s leading tutoring organisations with offices in Hong Kong and Singapore. As well as being a governor of Westside Free School, Will is an active participant in UK education debates, appearing on Newsnight, The Today Programme and at the Wellington Festival of Education.He has advocated for the professionalization of tutoring in leading UK newspapers, and has spoken on education at institutions such as Credit Suisse and Freshfields. He is a board member for The Tutors’ Association and the Harrow Association.
Ben has been the Deputy Headmaster of King’s Ely since September 2018. Prior to that he spent seven years at Ampleforth as Housemaster, Deputy Head Middle School and maths teacher and he also coached the U16A rugby team.
Ben was educated at Ampleforth College and attended Bristol University before completing a PGCE at Oriel College, Oxford; he has recently completed a Masters in Educational Leadership at Buckingham University.
In addition to North Yorkshire, he has taught in Sydney, London and Sherborne, Dorset. He served for five years in the British Army with the Irish Guards and has played professional rugby for Leicester and Bristol. He is married to Emma, who is a considerably better golfer than him, and recently completed the hottest London Marathon on record.
Martin is the former High Master of St Paul’s School in London. Prior to that, he was
High Master of The Manchester Grammar School and Headmaster of The Perse School, Cambridge. He was Chairman of HMC (The Headmasters’ and Headmistress’s Conference) in 2014. He was described as ‘the most influential Head in the independent sector’ by the Times Educational Supplement and the Daily Telegraph.
After St Paul’s, Martin was the Director of Education for GEMS (UK) and Chairman of the Clarendon Academies Group, and Founder and President of The National Mathematics and Science College. Martin was educated at Uppingham School and has a PhD from the University of Sheffield. He is a Founding Governor of The London Academy of Excellence, as well as being the author of several historical novels and books on education.
Since 2011, Harry has been Managing
Partner of Harrington Cooper, a cross-border distribution business that raises assets from institutional and wholesale investors in the UK, Europe and Japan for investment managers based across the globe.
Prior to his career in asset management, Harry was an officer in the Irish Guards, retiring as a captain in 2006. As a father of three children, aged six to 13, Harry takes a keen interest in educational matters.
Stephen Fern is a qualified ACA who trained with PricewaterhouseCoopers and has over 18 years’ experience in finance, operations and risk management. Stephen has worked in the UK, Australia and more recently the US. He has worked in a turnaround capacity for SME businesses as well as supporting a number of businesses through a growth phase ensuring the infrastructure is sufficient to drive safe growth, with an ever-watchful eye on cash flow. Stephen was Finance Director of Country Court Care from 2014 to 2016 and subsequently a Partner and Finance Director of Nelson Solicitors until May 2019. Stephen is currently the Finance Director of 200 Degrees Coffee based in Nottingham and 9 months ago opened Venture Learning an Alternative Provision set up to support Key Stage 3 and 4 students.”