School Governors

Board of Governors

The Governors are responsible for the general direction and ensuring the proper management and control of the School.  Each member of the Governing Body sits on one or more sub-committees where members of the Senior Management Team report in detail, their findings are then presented to the main Governing Body at their termly meetings. 

Dom Leo Maidlow Davis - Prior Administrator and Chair of Governors.

Dom Leo Maidlow Davis was educated at Downside and Cambridge University after which he joined the Monastery. Always involved in the School, Father Leo has taught classics, been House Master of Smythe and most recently until 2014 was Head Master of Downside School. He is now Prior Administrator, Chairman of Downside Abbey Trust and Chairman of Governors.

Giles Mercer - Vice Chair of Governors

Giles Mercer read History at Cambridge and gained a doctorate at Oxford. He was Head of History at Charterhouse and then Director of Studies at Sherborne School, before becoming the first lay Head Master at Stonyhurst College (1985-1996) and Head Master of Prior Park College (1996-2009). He was on the committee of the Catholic Independent Schools' Conference in the 1990s, becoming Chairman from 2000 to 2004.

Adrian Aylward - Education Committee

Adrian Aylward was educated at Worth and Oxford University then spent nine years in the City and Industry latterly as CEO of a public company. In 1992 he completed a PGCE at Kings College London and moved into education. He was for four years a Housemaster and Head of Religious Studies at Downside and from 1996 to 2006 was Headmaster of Stonyhurst College, Lancashire. Adrian was Headmaster of Leweston School, Dorset, until 2015. He is an ISI Inspector, with specialist training as a Boarding Inspector.

Dom Anselm Brumwell - Finance and Resources Committee

Dom Anselm Brumwell studied French, German and Theology at Durham University before entering the monastery in 1995. Following studies in Biblical Theology in Rome he returned to Downside in 2003 and since then has taught Religious Studies, Latin and German in the school and was a housemaster. He has been a trustee since 2004. In the monastery he is also choir master and vocations' director.

Dom David Foster - Finance and Resources Committee

After studying classics and philosophy at university, Dom David specialised in Patristic Theology. Currently based in Rome at Sant'Anselmo where he is the Choir Master and does some teaching. He has published three books, on lectio divina and prayer, and is currently working on a study of the metaphysics of prayer. He gives frequent retreats and talks on monastic theology.

Dermot Gleeson - Finance and Resources Committee

Dermot Gleeson, an Old Gregorian, graduated from Ullathorne House before studying at Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge. He has enjoyed a successful career in politics, in particular working closely with Chris Patten and the European Commission, and is currently the Non-Executive Chairman of MJ Gleeson.

Jerry Hawthorne - Chair of Education Committee

Jerry Hawthorne, has been a solicitor since 1974 and currently works as a Consultant to Farrer and Co. He specialises in dispute resolution and employment law and has spent most of his career acting for Roman Catholic Dioceses and Catholic Religious Charities. In addition to his work for Churches and Charities, Jerry has spent many years advising schools, both state and independent, and higher education institutions, on a broad range of contentious and employment matters. Jerry was Honorary Solicitor to the visit of Pope John Paul II to Great Britain in 1982 for which he was given the Papal award of Knight of St Gregory (KSG).

Catherine Hughes - Education Committee

Ms Catherine Hughes is the Principal of St Bede's Catholic College, an Independent Academy in Bristol. Having trained as a Mathematics teacher at La Sainte Union Southampton and subsequently graduating from Reading University with a Bachelor of Education, Ms Hughes worked in three Catholic schools before moving to St Bede's in 1995. She is recognised as a National Leader in Education and brings a wealth of educational experience to her role as a Governor at Downside. Catherine is responsible for Initial Teacher Training.

Peter Jenkins - Education Committee

Peter graduated from Downside in 1967 and went on to Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, where he studied Classical Philosophy. He continued his studies at Harvard as a Harkness Fellow. After a long and successful career as a diplomat based in Vienna, Washington DC, Paris, Brasil and Geneva, he retired to Bath, where he lives with his wife, and joined the Governing Body in December 2012.

Neil McLaughlan - Finance and Resources Committee

Neil graduated from Durham University. After a career in management consultancy with Accenture, he trained as an English teacher and has subsequently taught at Stonyhurst, Worth and Downside, where he was also Director of Admissions. Since 2007, Neil has been Head Master of Westminster Cathedral Choir School. He is also a governor of Ardingly College in Sussex.

James Scott-Gatty - Chair of Finance and Resources Committee

James, an Old Gregorian, graduated from Roberts House in 1976. After studying economics at Exeter University he qualified as a chartered accountant and has spent most of his career as a finance director for investment management businesses, including Laing and Cruickshank, UBS Wealth Management and Cheviot. He is a past parent and his father was also educated at Downside.

Dominic Tayler - Finance and Resources Committee

Dominic Tayler, an Old Gregorian, graduated from Caverel House in 1985. His son Alexander was educated at Downside, his daughter Isabella is in Caverel and he and his family have a long association with Downside. Dominic is an Investment Director at Cheviot Asset Management specialising in private client charities and in particular religious orders. He brings a wealth of financial expertise to the Governing body.