St Bede C of E Primary Multi Academy Trust

MAT Leadership Team





Sarah Bagshaw
Chief Executive Officer 

Worked within the Education sector nationally at a strategic level for over 15 years. Upholds the Christian ethos of the MAT. Manages the overall operations of the organisation. Develops and approves strategies to meet Members, parents, children, educational agencies and employee needs. Communicates with people inside and outside the organisation to discover what policies, operational and marketing strategies will help the Trust move forward. Underpinned by a background as a Chartered Accountant with over 30 years’ experience driving successful business operations in a variety of sectors, dealing with growth and change management at a strategic and operational level





Sarah Rostron
Chief Operating Officer

 Sarah has over 19 years’ experience in Primary School education. In her role as Chief Operating Officer, Sarah works alongside Headteachers on strategy and improvement to ensure that children have access to an education package that prepares them for the future. She creates working groups across the Trust to develop new policy, practice and educational approaches to improve outcomes for both staff and pupils. Sarah is a Specialist Leader of Education with specialisms in Teaching and Learning, Curriculum Leadership and Quality Standards. She has successfully led initiatives at St. Bede and other schools to raise standards in Maths and English; to improve the quality of teaching and to improve data reporting and analysis. She has also played a leading role in a number of “Deep Dive” diagnostics which have led to whole school improvements in the Trust and beyond. Previously Head of School at St. Bede, a three form entry primary school in Bolton. In 2021, she received TES Headteacher of the Year award, after being nominated by staff, Governors and parents, for her dedication and hard work during the pandemic.





Carol Mee
Finance Director

Over 30 years’ experience of working within a finance and payroll environment both within the public and private sectors. Extensive experience in financial and payroll administration, process control and multi-site operations team . Works closely with the senior leadership Team at each Academy and within the Trust for over 6 years supporting the education team to drive forward changes which benefit the children and the Trust. Provides mentoring and advice to other Academies and schools within Bolton on finance and administration issues.





Emma Pendlebury
Human Resources Director

 Emma has experience of working in the Public Sector, Further Education Sector and the Not for Profit Sectors and has tangible experience in leading and managing HR services delivering on a number of key organisational objectives. She is currently responsible for Human Resources across the Trust and St Bede Childcare Ltd and leads on supporting the senior management team on all aspects of Human Resources. Emma has designed a quality improvement plan and works closely with Finance and IT teams to deliver a positive customer – led service. Emma is responsible for a HR Team consisting of a HR Attendance Officer and a HR Assistant.





Karl Denton
Operations Director


Karl has over 15 years of experience of working in ICT within the education sector. He is currently responsible for ICT across the whole of the Trust and St Bede’s Childcare Limited. Karl continually strives to ensure the ICT services are working effectively, while constantly reviewing the efficiency of organisational systems and comparing performance/costs to new emerging systems within the IT sector. Karl manages a small ICT team whom ensure that network resources on and off site for all end users including children and staff are working effectively, to ensure a high level of security and keep up to date with the changing demands of the organisations.





Anna Black

Over 19 years’ experience in education. The Headteacher at St. Bede Primary Academy, a three-form entry primary school in Bolton, and is committed to providing educational excellence. A Specialist Leader of Education with particular expertise in the Quality of Education. Has been successfully deployed to support a number of schools resulting in significant impact on standards. A recent external review report stated, “The Headteacher leads with energy and vision.”





Nicola Whittaker

 Nicola has been a Headteacher since September 2019. Having worked at St Bede Primary Academy for fourteen years she first became professionally involved with Tonge Moor Primary School in March 2017, supporting school improvement. After sponsor lead acdemisation in 2018, she became Deputy headteacher. Within three years of headship, including during the global pandemic, she has ensure sustainable whole school improvement at Tonge Moor Primary Academy from an OFSTED judgement of inadequate to good. As a former pupil of the school, improving outcomes for the most disadvantaged pupils is a passion, ensuring that all children get an equal chance at achieving their potential regardless of backgrounds or postcodes. The vision is that everyone feels inspired to work towards their lifelong aspirations through a love of learning. She has almost twenty-seven years’ experience in five primary schools and senior leadership experience in four schools. During her career, she has held a variety of leadership roles including whole school responsibility for Special Educational Needs, Safeguarding, Teaching and Learning and Assessment. As a senior leader, she has been responsible for ensuring the highest standards of teaching and learning, developing positive school and pupil culture as well as the strategic planning and monitoring of continual school improvement. In addition, she has supported the St Bede Primary Academy teaching school, working with Altrincham Girls Grammar school as a Quality Assurance mentor for School Centred Initial Teaching Training. She considers it a privilege to have the opportunity to contribute to the career development of both experienced teachers, trainees and support staff, as this always has the best impact on learners.





James Palmer
Catering Manager

Over 20 years' catering experience working both within the private and public sector. Experience in managing teams, driving strategy, controlling budgets, and delivering a high level of service to stakeholders. Liaises with catering teams to ensure our children: are provided with nutritious and delicious meals; experience foods from diverse cultural and ethnic backgrounds; receive a consistently positive dining experience in comfortable and inviting surroundings; feel listened to and included on menu choices.