The Governance of Bristol Cathedral Choir School sits within the structure of governance for the Cathedral Schools Trust. The overarching governance body of the Trust is the ‘Members’. Beneath the members sit the ‘Trustees’. For information about Cathedral Schools Trust - including the Decision Matrix, Scheme of Governance and Terms of Delegation for Local Governing Bodies (for religiously designated schools) - visit the CST website here 

Below this structure, every school in the Trust has a Local Governing Body (LGB). The governors of Bristol Cathedral Choir School are listed below. If you wish to contact the governing body, please write to the Chair, Stephen Parsons, BCCS, College Square, Bristol, BS1 5TS

Stephen Parsons, MBE, LIB, FRSA, DL profile picture

Stephen Parsons, MBE, LIB, FRSA, DL

Chair of Governors, Quality of Education and Safeguarding Lead (years 12-13)

Term of office from 23 June 2020 to 22 June 2024.

Stephen became a Governor of BCS in 2002 and Chairman of Governors in 2004.He led the school’s transition from a fee-charging school (Bristol Cathedral School) to an Academy (Bristol Cathedral Choir School) in 2008. He welcomed the opening of Cathedral Primary School in September 2013, which helps fulfil the vision for a first-class “all-through” educational institution within the shadow of Bristol Cathedral. In 2016 the Cathedral Schools Trust was formed and this MAT now includes 7 Schools [three secondary and four primary schools] and educates 4000 pupils. Stephen became a Deputy Lieutenant of the County & City of Bristol in 2010.He was Chair of Quartet Community Foundation[2009-2014], the LEP Social Enterprise Sector Group[2011-2016] and was Master of The Worshipful Company of Security Professionals [2009-2010]. He has been Chair of the Cathedral Trust since 2013. In 2019 Stephen was installed a Capitular Canon of Bristol Cathedral and is a member of Chapter.

Mandy Ford profile picture

Mandy Ford

Quality of Education (years 7-11)

Term of office from 2 February 2022 to 2 February 2026

Mandy is the Dean of Bristol, a role which combines leadership of the cathedral with a place on the Bishop’s staff as the senior priest in the diocese. Mandy comes to Bristol having been Director of Discipleship and Ministry in the Diocese of Southwark with responsibility for the training and professional development of clergy. She also held the role of Canon Chancellor in Southwark Cathedral with particular oversight of education in the cathedral.

Mandy  was brought up in Hong Kong in an army family and educated in Wiltshire. She studied fine art in London before training as a teacher in Exeter where she subsequently spent ten years teaching in the junior department of the Maynard School.

After the call to ordination, Mandy studied theology in Oxford and began her ministry on a deprived estate in Leicester city centre. During this time and her subsequent ministry on a mixed estate on the edge of the city Mandy retained her involvement in education and with children and young people, acting as a school governor and trustee of a number of charities working with excluded and vulnerable young people. Mandy’s partner, Anne, is a former primary school teacher. Together they enjoy theatre, live music and gardening.

Hannah Hugh-Jones profile picture

Hannah Hugh-Jones

Co Vice Chair of Governors and Careers & Personal Development

Term of office from 1 December 2022 to 30 November 2026

Hannah is a freelance content strategist with over 20 years’ experience in journalism and communications. Having lived in Bristol since finishing university, she is passionate about the diversity of the city’s community, and has a particular interest in marginalised communities. She regularly volunteers locally for an alcohol and drug treatment charity, and homeless charities. Hannah was elected to the BCCS Board of Governors in April 2019 and serves as the Careers link governor.

Merlyn Ipinson-Fleming profile picture

Merlyn Ipinson-Fleming


Term of office from 23 June 2020 to 22 June 2024

Merlyn is a senior Human Resources professional with over 20 years’ qualified experience working in both Advisory and Strategic capacities and with extensive experience primarily in the public sector. Merlyn has worked in the NHS, Local Government, Education and currently the Civil Service focusing on Change Management, Organisational Development and Design and people management at all levels of the organisation.

Merlyn is also Chair of the newly established CST Trinity Academy and a Trustee and Committee Chair of Quartet Community Foundation as well as being a Trustee and Committee Chair for Cathedral Schools Trust.

Mike Lea profile picture

Mike Lea

Finance and General Purpose

Term of office from 23 June 2020 to 22 June 2024

Until his retirement at the end of 2020, Mike Lea was the managing partner of PKF Francis Clark's new Bristol office, a venture he began in July of 2019. Previously Mike had built twenty-two years of experience with a Top 10 firm in Bristol, ten of which were spent as managing partner and two as senior partner. Mike is a corporate tax specialist, having qualified with a ‘Big 4’ firm in the north of England and then spending a further eight years working on domestic and international tax assignments before returning to the South West.

Focussing heavily on the building and construction, aerospace and defence, music and entertainment sectors, he also regularly presents at tax technical seminars as well as annual budget events. Mike is a member of a number of professional bodies and committees, including the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) and the Chartered Institute of Taxation (CIOT).

Mike is heavily involved in the charitable sector in Bristol and is well known in the city for his work on a diverse range of organisations covering sport, education, theatre, youth work, religion and drug treatments. He is chairman of a number of these boards.

Andy Parfitt profile picture

Andy Parfitt

Staff Governor

Term of office from 15 October 2020 to 14 October 2024

Andy has been teaching Mathematics at BCCS since September 2015, when he joined the school on completion of his PGCE at Oxford University. Prior to that he spent over twenty years in the Army, working in a wide variety of appointments that gave him experience of a number of aspects of management, including operational planning, public-sector finance, risk-management, human resources, policy development, and project and change-management. Andy is married with two sons and they have thoroughly enjoyed living in Bristol since 2016, following their previous itinerant military lifestyle. His eldest son joined the school in 2019.

Garry Porter profile picture

Garry Porter

Behaviour & Attitudes

Term of office 13 February 2023 to 12 February 2027

Air Commodore (Retd) Garry Porter is a former pupil of Bristol Cathedral School and currently chairman of its alumni, the Cathedralians Society.  A Food Science graduate of Queen Elizabeth College, London, he worked in industry before joining the Royal Air Force as a navigator. He subsequently enjoyed a number of operational command positions, including running a major air station and its associated budget; staff appointments also exposed Garry to the demands of Defence strategic financial planning. 

He was a school governor, focused on pupil premium, in Wiltshire for 6 years before joining the BCCS board in Summer 2019, where he has now shifted his focus to Behaviour and Attitudes.  

Peter Murden profile picture

Peter Murden

Pupil Premium

Term of office from 11 May 2022 to 10 May 2026

Peter got his BA Hons in Politics & Communication Studies from the University of Liverpool in 2014 and since then has worked extensively in marketing consultancy for faith-based organisations. He moved to Bristol in 2020 to enable his wife to study for a PhD at the University of Bristol. He brings his own experience of education, alongside professional skills, to help ensure that every pupil in the school community can thrive. When he isn't overworking, Peter, can be found cooking, reading or enjoying the sights and sounds of Bristol.

Barney Angliss profile picture

Barney Angliss


Term of office from 11 May 2023 to 10 May 2027

Barney is an independent consultant, Tribunal Representative and expert witness in Special Educational Needs and Disability who researches and writes on experiences of disability in childhood. Barney has years of leadership experience in alternate provision and Local Authority management, and was a SEN Co-Ordinator in Secondary schools for 15 years. Barney is autistic and occasionally speaks about identity and representation at conferences and in parent support groups.

Antonia Lythgoe profile picture

Antonia Lythgoe

Safeguarding Lead (years 7 - 11)

Term of office from 21 November 2023 to 20 November 2027

Antonia Lythgoe was bought up in London before coming to Bristol to train to be a secondary school teacher, having completed her Geography degree at the University of Manchester. Following several years in the classroom teaching Geography to secondary school pupils, she became a curriculum support teacher for the Local Education Authority in Bristol, supporting the introduction of Citizenship into the National Curriculum. She moved to the University of Bristol to run the Citizenship PGCE programme in 2007 before becoming the Programme Director for the Teach First Programme at the School of Education. Antonia has worked in education for 25 years and has a passion and commitment to addressing educational inequalities and helping to ensure that children are able to reach their full potential, whatever their socio-economic background. She has spent time in many classrooms in the most challenging schools in Bristol and understands some of the obstacles some schools face in terms of helping their pupils reach their full potential. Her current role is as Undergraduate Portfolio Director in the School of Education and Senior Lecturer on the Education Studies programme. Additionally, she has an expertise in student wellbeing and pastoral support as a result of all of her education roles, but most recently as Senior Tutor in the School of Education. Antonia is a mother to two boys and enjoys amongst other things cooking, going to the opera and singing with the Bristol choir, the Exultate Singers.