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Governing Body

Lingfield created an Educational Trust under lay management at the beginning of 1987, establishing a Board of Governors.

Mr Ian Rolfe - Chairman of Trustees and Governors

Educated at Ratton Secondary School in Eastbourne, Ian graduated from Brunel University with an Honours degree in Government, Politics and Modern History  following which he joined stockbroking firm James Capel. After eleven years in emerging markets stockbroking with Bear Stearns and JP Morgan he joined Dresdner Kleinwort’s UK equity sales team. Following Dresdner’s sale in 2009 he moved to Panmure Gordon before retiring from the City in April 2015. Other than keenly following the stock market, his hobbies include anything to do with military aviation, badminton and working in the garden. His son Edward left Lingfield in 2016 to take up a place at Exeter University.

Appointed to the Board in 2016

Mr Peter Samuels - Trustee and Governor

Peter was educated at Horley Bi-lateral School (Grammar) and is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales having qualified in 1972. In the ten years to 1988 he was Finance Director and Managing Director of an engineering group. Thereafter he established a corporate finance advisory practice that he continues to head today. Peter has lived in Lingfield for many years and is married with two daughters who both attended Lingfield. He is interested in all sports and enjoys reading and music, having played the guitar since his teens.

Appointed to the Board in 1999

Mrs Clare Higgins - Trustee and Governor

Educated at St Wilfred's RC Comprehensive School, Crawley and University College, London, Clare qualified as a solicitor in 1987 and worked in the City until 2000.  She is now a partner in a Kent based civil and commercial mediation firm, and also works as a volunteer facilitating community mediations for West Kent Mediation. Clare is married with three (adult) children and lives in Sevenoaks. She continues to be involved in legal matters at local level, and enjoys walking, music and reading.


Appointed to the Board in 2010  

Reverend Nigel Hinton - Trustee and Governor

Educated at Hornchurch Grammar School, Nigel gained a B.Sc. in Geography at University College London. There followed a PGCE from Birmingham and a M.A. (Ed) from the Institute of Education, London. Nigel has taught exclusively in independent schools, including 25 years at St Paul's in South West London. For the last five years, before retirement in 2012, he was Vice Principal (Academic) in a Christian Mission school for international students in South India. As an Anglican priest he has worked in several dioceses. Nigel is married with two grown-up daughters and is currently Associate Vicar at St John's, Dormansland. His interests include Meteorology, Christian Apologetics and several sports.

Appointed to the Board 2011

Mrs Linda Charlton - Trustee and Governor

Educated at Tonbridge Grammar School for Girls, Linda then gained a Law Degree from De Montfort University after which she joined Fidelity International, a privately-owned investment company.  She covered a number of responsibilities during her 30 year career including global Chief Risk Officer, Head of Fund Accounting and Investment Services Operations for UK and Continental Europe and Fund Operations in Asia.  In addition to these business responsibilities Linda was also the Chair of the Corporate Fund Raising Committee and a sponsor for the Diversity and Inclusion Committee including being the Champion for Mental Health.  She was also a Trustee for the UK Pension Fund for a number of years.  Linda is married and has three children, all of whom have attended Lingfield College. Linda participates in a number of voluntary activities which include being a helper for a local branch of the Riding for the Disabled, Trustee and Secretary of the Withyham Village Hall, a brand ambassador for the Hospice in the Weald and a cross country judge and dressage steward for British Eventing South East. She is also an independent Pension Trustee for a London-based company.  Linda's interests include walking, gardening, reading and anything to do with horses.

Appointed to the Board in 2017

Mrs Andrea Penton - Trustee and Governor

Andrea was educated at Our Lady’s Convent Abingdon and Oxford High School before gaining a BSc in Physiology and Pharmacology at Southampton University. From there she joined JP Morgan’s finance division, then moved to Lehman Brothers where she became an Executive Director in European Equities. At that time she also had responsibility for graduate recruitment within the Equity department. Andrea left the city to look after her family. She currently has two daughters at Lingfield, and chaired the LNDA for several years. 

Appointed to the board in 2016

Mrs Amira Cooper – Governor

Amira grew up in the Middle East and came to school in England when she was 10.  Educated at Ardingly College and then Manchester University, she graduated with a BA Hons in Languages in 1995. After graduating, she moved to Dubai where she worked for Hilton Hotels as a Business Development Manager and then Emirates Airlines as Head of Marketing for Emirates’ Ecotourism Projects.  She met her husband in Dubai and they moved back to the UK in 2002 and had their first child later that year. Amira has done voluntary work for Médecins Sans Frontières and Riding for the Disabled as well as translation work and tutoring since starting a family.  She has 3 children who have all attended Lingfield College.  Her youngest is currently at the Prep School. She speaks Farsi, Arabic and French and her interests include travel, reading, dog walking and tennis.

Appointed to the Board in 2018