The Governors are actively involved in every aspect of the school.

They attend performances, shadow staff and pupils and support many of the extracurricular activities that take place throughout the school year. However, they also play an integral part in the management of Wellington School.

The Board is responsible for: agreeing the vision and aims of the school with the Head; the conduct, governance and control of the assets of the school; overseeing the policies, plans and procedures that will ensure the best possible education for present and future Wellington pupils.

Some of Wellington School’s 11 Governors are simply Board Members while others sit on three internal committees – Finance, Bursaries and Estates – according to their expertise. The committees report back regularly to the full Board.

Jennifer Simpson, Chair of the Board

Key Facts

  • Jennifer has been a Board member since 2013 and three years later she was appointed as Chair of the Board of Governors.
  • Jennifer is a former Wellington pupil, parent to former and current pupils and her mother was a teacher here too! We find out more about her connections with the school in the Winter 2018 edition of The Turret. Read it here.
  • Jennifer is a Consultant in the pharmaceutical industry.

My mum was a teacher at Wellington in the 1950s, I was a pupil from nursery to S6 (1969 –1982) and my two children are were also Wellington Educated.

I have many fond memories of my time at Wellington and this long involvement with the school made me feel that I perhaps had something to offer in return!

I hope that we keep our Former Pupil community close – we are important part of the school͛s legacy but also the school’s future.

Fraser Aitken

Chaplain to the School until my retirement as Minister at St Columba Church in Ayr in 2019, I was delighted to be invited to become a Board Member that same year. This allows me to keep my close association with the Wellington Community, something which I cherish very much indeed.

Having lived and worked in Ayr for some 30 years prior to retiral, I hope that my knowledge of Ayrshire will prove useful and that my wide involvement with families and individuals in a host of situations will be beneficial to the wellbeing of the School.

My fellow governors are a very knowledgeable and experienced group of people and I am certainly benefiting from all that they share at our meetings.

Fiona Ablett

Key Facts

  • Fiona joined the Board in 2016.
  • Medical Practitioner at South West of Scotland Breast Screening Service at Ayrshire Central Hospital.

All three of my children have attended Wellington – the two eldest have left now but my youngest son, Hamish, is still here.

As a parent, my involvement in Wellington School has spanned almost 20 years!

I have seen a lot of changes over that time, attended countless school events, know the workings of the school well and count individual teachers as friends.

Gilbert Andrew

Key Facts

  • Appointed Governor in 2013.
  • Gilbert is an accountant with 30 year’s experience as a partner in BDO Stoy Hayward.
  • Gilbert sits on the Finance Committee.

Marguerite Hunter Blair

Key Facts

  • CEO of Play Scotland, which is the leading charity organisation for the development and promotion of children and young people’s play. Play is a powerful builder of happy, healthy, capable children. It also benefits families, communities and society.
  • School Governor since 2018

All my five children attended Wellington school, enjoying the wide range of subjects, musical performances, hockey, rugby, debating and exchange programmes. As a family we enjoyed hosting children from a wide range of countries and still keep in touch with some of them. The young ones all made life-long friendships and were enriched by the many staff whose enthusiasm for life and learning continues to inspire them.

There is an old African proverb, ‘It takes a village to raise a child’, which means that a whole community must interact with children for those children to thrive. Enabling all children and young people to flourish and reach their potential is everyone’s business, and I am delighted to be able to help support the school to be the best that it can be for all our pupils, families and the wider local community

Patrick James Lorimer

Key Facts

  • Appointed as a Governor in 1999, Patrick sits on the Estates Committee.
  • Patrick is an architect. His practice ARPL Architects has offices in London and Wellington Square, Ayr.

My aunt, sister and daughter are all former pupils of the school and my grandmother gave out the prizes on Speech Day.

I became a Governor for personal connections and because I felt that I could be useful to the school from both a professional and personal basis.

My grandmother, The Right Honourable Lady Onslow, who was forthrightly Irish, made a particular acerbic remark about the quality of her family’s intellect when she was handing out prizes at Speech Day – my sister, her Granddaughter, failed to collect a single cup!

Laura Wilson

Key Facts

  • Laura joined the board in 2018.
  • She is a director at MacRoberts Solicitors

My eldest son, Harry, is a current pupil in the senior school. I believe that the school is an excellent platform for pupils to have the best start in life. With further education and career prospects constantly evolving, I would like to see the school continue to adapt to this ever-changing landscape and prepare young people for exciting careers. Wellington School is a place where families maintain a connection for generations and that sense of belonging is something I particularly like.

I decided to become a governor because I have a keen interest in learning and development and, as such, am keen to ensure that all pupils at the school receive the best possible education. It is important that each pupil is fully supported and prepared for entering the world of work and real life. Through my professional skills and experience, I feel I can make a valuable contribution to the board and the school

Tom Steele

Key Facts

  • Tom was appointed Governor in 2017

Tom has a Masters Degree in Construction Management and holds professional registrations with the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (FRICS) and the Chartered Institute of Building (MCIOB). He has spent over 35 years working in NHS Scotland, holding senior posts within NHS Ayrshire and Arran, NHS Forth Valley, NHS National Services Scotland and currently holds the role of Director of Estates and Facilities at NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde. He is also currently involved with a number of national committees and service review groups.

Tom has a particular interest in strategic asset management and is an Honorary Professor at Glasgow Caledonian University’s School of Engineering, Computing & Built Environment. He Chairs the University Built Environment & Asset Management Research Centre Advisory Board (BEAM).

“I became a Governor because I believe that I have relevant skills and experience that I can bring to operation and governance of the school. I am also keen to explore opportunities for students to get some exposure to the roles of specialist designer and operational sectors within the healthcare environment”.

My association with the school is fairly recent as my daughter joined Wellington in 2015 at S1 stage and has thoroughly enjoyed the experience and opportunities that are offered to students.

Alastair Wilson

Key Facts

  • Alastair was appointed Governor 2007 and he sits on the Estates Committee.
  • He is the Managing Director of Wilson Homes (Kilmarnock) Limited.

I was the Chairman of Drumley Preparatory School, supervising all major projects and maintenance; I was also there at the time of the merger with Wellington.

My sons were educated at Drumley School and Gordonstoun while my wife and daughter were both pupils at Wellington – we have a long history with the school!

John Grover-Minto

Key Facts

  • John was appointed Governor in September 2021.
  • John has over thirty years of experience working as a senior project manager with agencies such as the EU, SIDA (Sweden), UK AID and USAID. He has been responsible for designing and implementing projects in complex humanitarian and development settings in countries such as Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Nigeria and South Africa. John has also worked as a project manager with a major University in Sweden in order to deepen their programme of internationalisation
  • John’s work as a senior project manager and leader has been recognised through Fellowships with both the Royal Society (RSA) and the UK Institute of Leadership and Management. John is a project management consultant to a range of organisations and is an Associate Lecturer on the University of the West of Scotland’s MSc in Project Management

When my family decided to relocate to the UK in late 2018, the choice of School for our three-year-old daughter was pivotal. Our earliest contact with Wellington was extremely positive so we enrolled Adriana into the Nursery. I am delighted to say that our expectations have been exceeded and she is making great progress across the board in P2.

The current trend within the evolution of all organisations has seen the identification, planning and implementation of innovative projects. I hope that my own practical experiences as a project manager can support the School as we address short, medium and long term opportunities and challenges because I believe that Wellington’s response to the pandemic has shown that we are well placed to grow across a number of platforms in future

David Kennedy

Key Facts

  • David was appointed to the Board in September 2022.
  • Previous Bursar at Wellington School from 2017-2021.
  • Now retired

In addition to serving as the Bursar, I previously spent 35 years working in the Banking industry, during which I was awarded a Fellowship.

My sister is a former pupil of Wellington.

Having gained an in depth understanding of the School I am very much looking forward to being involved at Wellington as it develops over the next few years.

Keir Gilius

Key Facts

  • Keir was appointed to the Board in December 2023.
  • Partner of a long-established Ayrshire law firm, dealing principally with civil litigation and dispute resolution, with a focus on family and commercial cases.

Wellington School has always been an institution that I have been familiar with on both a personal and professional level. I’m delighted to now serve on the Board of Governors, bringing to the Board my legal knowledge, having worked in various areas of the law in national and more local firms over the course of my career to date.

I have always had a keen interest in education, which I maintain by teaching on various courses at the University of Strathclyde as well as acting as External Examiner to another University’s Exam Board. Professionally, I am regularly appointed by the Court to work with and represent children and young people and I am keen to bring to the Board my experiences from across my working life, which I hope will be of assistance!