Meet the Governors

Nicola Waters (Chair of Governors)

Co-Opted Governor

I joined the Governing Body at Billingshurst Primary School in July 2021. I have been a governor at several West Sussex schools over the past 13 years and am also Chair of Governors at The Weald as well as chairing an Interim Executive Board for a federation of 3 schools in the Rother Valley. In addition to these roles, I am a West Sussex Local Leader of Governance which involves assisting WSCC Governor Services with a range of tasks.

As Chair of the Governing Body, my role is to ensure that we have a clear understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of the school, offering both challenge and support to the leadership team to drive school improvement and ensure the highest standard of education for all pupils.

Marion Ley


David Lowe

Local Authority Governor

I was originally appointed in 1988 as a governor for the junior school. I escaped briefly in 1993 when working in another part of the country, but was reappointed at the time of the creation of separate Governing Bodies, serving on both and as the first Chair of the infant school Board. I have been closely involved in many building projects and the appointment of 5 headteachers.

I was educated as a Metallurgist but followed a career in manufacturing and general management before setting up my own cost management consultancy in 1995. I have one daughter who moved on from the East Street site via the Weald and is currently teaching History in a large secondary school. My other daughter was also educated at the Weald, qualified in pharmacology and as a vet, lives locally and has two children who both completed their Primary education at BPS.

I always aim to put the interests of the children first; I am very keen on the pursuit of excellence in all things. I see the Governor role as strategic – probing & challenging the Senior Management and exploring better ways to deliver the best possible education for our children (and grandchildren!).

Chris Evans (Vice Chair)

Co-Opted Governor

I have been a Governor since 2016 as I wanted to be able to support my children and their school. I am a self-employed electrician, scout leader, climbing instructor and now aspiring paddleboard instructor. My wife Natalie and I are Billingshurst born and bred and my boys refuse to believe that the school was once in three parts. We've seen it come together and grow and I want to help.

I take great pride in being a parent and like most parents I would like what's best for my children and I want to help make sure that they get the best opportunities. As a school governor I have an opportunity for me to use my business, financial, communication and other 'work' skills that don't get a lot of use around the house.

Richard Runalls

Parent Governor

I was delighted to join the governing body as a parent governor in 2022 as my eldest son was in Year 3 at the time and my youngest son joined the school shortly after my appointment. I am particularly interested in ensuring that all children are safeguarded well and can fulfil their full potential whatever their background or circumstance. I have a background in working with children who have special educational needs. My experience of the difficulties faced by these children and their families will ensure that the support and championing of these children and families be a key focus of mine.

Although I had no experience of school governance when I was appointed, I am a member of the senior management team with my employer and through this role, I have developed the skills necessary to provide support to the school when difficult decisions and discussions are needed in order to give the children and staff the best possible chance to succeed.

Melissa Galea-Holmes

Parent Governor

I have lived in Billingshurst since 2020 and became a Parent Governor in autumn 2022. The role is an opportunity for me to contribute to our school and village community and support the successful progress of Billingshurst Primary School towards its objectives and values.

I am a full-time working mum of two (in KS2 and nursery) and coordinate a nationally funded health and care research programme based at a London university, which lends plenty of useful skills to the governor role along with my parent perspective.

Tom Hampson

Staff Governor

I have been a class teacher and a school leader at Billingshurst Primary School since September 2019. Currently, I teach Morocco Class and am Phase Leader for Lower KS2. Within school, I am also computing subject lead and director of the KS2 Choir. I am delighted to be the Staff Governor as we work together to provide the children in our care with the best primary school education and experience.

Prior to moving to Billingshurst, I lived and worked in the Dubai, UAE in a large five form entry international school teaching the British Curriculum. This gave me the opportunity to progress to being a middle leader and gave me valuable experience of effective systems and school leadership. I started my career in my home town of Bolton, working across KS2 for 3 years in a local outstanding school.

As I move into my 12th year in education, I am dedicated to making a difference at Billingshurst Primary School during a time of transition to ensure that this is a fabulous place to be for staff, children and the wider community.

Yvette Rowe

Co-Opted Governor

I am delighted to be one of the Co-opted Governors at BPS. I have lived in Billingshurst over 25 years and during this time I have seen the village and community grow and now that I am in a position where I have spare time, I believe it to be a privilege to be able to support the school as it continues to be the best it can for all its children, parents and carers.

I have a professional background in Business Management and a career that has led to over 25 years of Senior Retail Management and Consultancy experience and I am hoping that my broad range of skills will help benefit the school.

Having young nieces, nephews and godchildren I have a keen interest in education and see this role as a great opportunity to be able to listen, challenge, encourage new ideas and appreciate our teaching and non-teaching staff and also the parents. I have an open and honest down to earth style and feel great pride in strategically shaping the school’s aims and objectives and supporting the school in achieving them.

Kate Kulka

Co-Opted Governor

I am delighted to have been appointed as a governor for Billingshurst Primary School. My husband and I moved to Billingshurst in 2019 and became parents here in 2020 and 2022, so are very keen to develop links with our local community and serve it in any way we can.

I began my professional life as a Primary School Teacher in Surrey, specialising in developmental literacy, leading Key Stage 1 and as lead mentor for student teachers and NQTs. Whilst teaching, I worked very closely with our governors which gave me an understanding and respect for the role of the governing body, which I hope to put to good use at BPS.

I also worked for Mencap, running leisure groups for young people with a range of disabilities and I now manage learning programmes in museums, galleries and historic houses in London - both roles which I feel have helped me to be a passionate advocate for children’s wellbeing and academic development. I am very glad to be part of the team at BPS and will continue to strive for excellence for their pupils.

Annette Calver

Co-Opted Governor

I am delighted to join the Governing Body of Billingshurst Primary School; I moved to Billingshurst in 2017 and have four grandchildren at BPS. My professional background is in education, I was Headteacher of a Surrey primary school for 23 years. I have worked as a Local Leader of Education, Performance Management Consultant, External Adviser and as Improvement Partner for a Multi Academy Trust of five primary schools in Surrey.

Seeing pupils grow and develop a love of learning as they experience a carefully designed curriculum delivered by talented professionals is a source of eternal fascination for me. Given the right conditions, and encouragement, all pupils can enjoy learning, progress well, experience success, learn to take pride in their achievements, develop high aspirations and grow the life skills of resilience and perseverance. I hope to make a positive contribution to the school by supporting it to continually improve and maintain high standards in all areas.

Ross Kelland

Co-Opted Governor

I am really pleased to have been appointed a co-opted governor at Billingshurst Primary School in 2022. With my two sons set to begin their journey at the school this seems like the perfect time to use some of the skills I have developed in a twenty year career as a police officer to help the school be the best it can.

For me the rewards of this role come in the knowledge that I am in a small way helping to support the school maintain outstanding educational standards for the children.

Having only moved to the village in the last few years I am really keen to engage with the staff, parents, pupils and local community to benefit Billingshurst Primary.

As a career Detective I have specialised in the area of safeguarding working in a number of public protection roles. I hope to use my background to ensure we are putting the welfare of our children first.

I have the best interests of the school at heart and in the future hope to share and celebrate in the success of the children, staff and school as it continues to thrive.

Sue Samson

Co-Opted Governor

I am delighted to join the governing body of Billingshurst Primary School, having retired from a full-time role in the education sector.

I have lived in Billingshurst for more than 30 years and my two children both attended the then Infant and Junior School and also The Weald. They both had a great education and have benefitted hugely from the wide experiences and opportunities provided for them by the schools in this village.

I have spent my entire career commuting out of the village to work in education myself. I have been a teacher; an Advisor for West Sussex County Council; an Ofsted Inspector; a Director in the Department for Education; and a CEO for an Academy Trust. I am now really excited to have the time to contribute to education in my own community.

I am passionate about the power of education to enrich lives and to provide children with opportunities to believe in themselves and to achieve their dreams and aspirations. I look forward to supporting Billingshurst Primary School in its great work to provide exceptional education in our community.