An independent board oversees the Hastings Opportunity Area. It brings together talented and committed senior leaders from schools, communities, business and central and local government. These individuals bring experience, insight, and ambition for Hastings and its young people.

Our Chair


Richard Meddings – independent chair

Richard serves on the boards of TSB Bank, Deutsche Bank and Jardine Lloyd Thompson Group plc. He is a non-executive director of HM Treasury and a trustee at Teach First. From 2002–2014 Richard was a group executive director at Standard Chartered plc and group finance director for 8years. He is an associate of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales and has a degree in Modern History from Exeter College, Oxford.

Partnership board members

  • Carole Dixon: chief executive, Education Futures Trust, a charity working to transform opportunities for students and families in Hastings
    • Dan Shelley: vice principal, East Sussex College Group
    • Graham Peters: deputy lieutenant, chair of Team East Sussex and vice-chair of South East Local Enterprise Partnership
    • Jessica Stubbings: senior manager, Partnerships and Governance, East Sussex County Council
    • John Smith: head of School of Education, University of Brighton and chief executive, University of Brighton Academies Trust
    • Kay Tinsley: principal, The St Leonards Academy
    • Lorraine Clarke: regional director, Ark academies trust
    • Maria Ludkin: legal director, GMB
    • Paul Hetherington: CEO, Marshall-Tufflex Ltd
    • Paul Lewis: Director of Government Relations, The Careers & Enterprise Company
    • Richard Preece: executive headteacher / CEO, Torfield & Saxon Mount Academy Trust
    • Richard Watson: Health Inequalities Programme Manager, NHS Hastings and Rother Clinical Commissioning Group
    • Victoria Conheady: Assistant Director, regeneration and culture, Hastings Borough Council

The meetings are also attended by the Dominic Herrington, regional schools commissioner for South-East England and South London, Emily Williams,  Department for Education’s head of delivery, and Helen Kay programme director, who provide advice and support to the partnership board.