Meet our Members

Tarka Learning Partnership’s Members have ultimate control over the Academy Trust and hold the Board of Directors to account. Their role is largely strategic, with the responsibility to guard and support the Trust’s vision. We are pleased to introduce you to our Members below:

Peter Blyth, Member

I am originally from Kingsbridge in South Devon and attended Kingsbridge Community College before moving to Plymouth College of Further Education to embark on a career in Electronics. I graduated from Plymouth College of Further Education (Plymouth Polytechnique) in 1991 with an HND in Telecommunications and Electronics Engineering and in 1992 I joined AWE Aldermaston (near Reading) on a 2-year Trainee Engineer scheme.   On completion of this I worked as an Electronics Engineer until I joined Media Products Ltd as Principle Engineer in 1996.  In 1997 I moved to my current employer, XP Power.

I have been at XP Power for over 22 years and started out as an Applications Engineer before moving into sales in 1998. In 2002 I moved to the USA to become the Medical Sales Director and moved in back to the UK in 2009.  In 2011 I become Executive Vice President European Sales and in November 2017, I changed roles to become the Executive Vice President of Global Products and Marketing.  Outside of work I am married with 4 wonderful children and love living in North Devon. I love most sports and have played Rugby and Cricket for a variety of teams in South Devon, Reading, California (USA) and North Devon.  I am also a committed Christian and an active member of our local church.

Graham Cockell, Member

I have been a governor for 15+ years at both primary and secondary schools and, during that time, I have been involved in most aspects of school governance including a spell as Chair of Governors. I was a governor at Newport during the academy conversion and have seen the benefits that has brought. For the past 6 years I have been a governor at the Park with a focus on the collection, analysis and interpretation of the ever-growing amount of data available to schools.

I have three children who have all been pupils at both Newport and the Park and have now progressed to further education (A levels and university).

My background is in engineering and software development and I am currently a co-founder and Chief Technology Officer of a US based healthcare IT company involved in the delivery of health improvement programs to the government and large employers.

I was a governor at the Park Community School when the possibility of forming a local MAT involving both primary and secondary schools was first discussed. The potential for this MAT to have a significant impact on the education young people in the area from nursery through to GCSE was obvious and I am excited to have the opportunity be part of that continuing journey.

Jane Hanson, Member

I represent the Diocese of Exeter as a Foundation Corporate Member, and have raised my family and lived in North Devon for over 20 years.

My career as an educationalist spans 43 years, working in primary, secondary and the further and higher education sectors, as a teacher, lecturer, education consultant and senior leader.  These roles have taken me across the country where I have gained wide experience and expertise in helping organisations to improve growth and raise standards in educational performance.

I retired in April 2021 and am continuing to pursue my passion for learning with personal interests.

Marie Mock, Member

I have lived, studied and worked in North Devon all my life and am now married with two teenage sons. I am very committed to raising the aspirations of young people in this area, through learning, and ensuring they have the support and opportunity to be the very best that they can be.

My career has been fairly diverse, starting in travel and tourism, then moving into revenue management, advertising and strategic planning. For the last 10 years, I have been self-employed as a proofreader, nutritional therapist and holistic therapist, enabling me to work from home and be flexible around my boys’ school and sporting commitments.

I have over a decade’s experience working on a voluntary basis for community and sports organisations, and as a school governor. I have chaired committees, been a Trustee, been responsible for the performance management of head teachers and assisted with the recruitment of many staff (including senior leadership/head teacher). I have experience with strategic planning, decision-making, school data, finance, curriculum, safeguarding and external inspections.

I strive to ensure that young people have the opportunity to thrive and grow throughout their education to become confident, resilient individuals who feel empowered to raise their own aspirations and carry forward a will-do attitude to learning and life. I will work hard to ensure that the Tarka Learning Partnership upholds its vision and values to ‘empower young people in North Devon through learning’.

Victoria Nel, Member

I have a background in education as a teacher of Key Stage 3, GCSE and A Level. I currently lecture at Petroc. I am  a trustee of Sol Language School in Barnstaple. I am also a qualified solicitor and practise in a North Devon firm.

As Chair of Governors of Newport, I was part of the team responsible for establishing the setting up of the Tarka Learning Partnership. I was appointed as a Local of Leader of Governance in February 2019 and my current role within the TLP is Chair of Members. I am also a Barnstaple Town Councillor.