(16) HMC/IDPE School Bursaries Conference, (Amba Hotel Marble Arch, London, 22 January 2018)


This conference is for: Heads, Chairs of Governors and Bursars/Clerks to the Governors in independent schools.  We recommend that, if possible, at least two delegates attend from each school.

Delegate fees:  £285 per person, or £245 per person if two or more people attend from one school.





Coffee and Registration


10.00 – 10.30



Session 1: Welcome and opening keynote speech

Keynote: Sir Peter Gershon, KBE, FREng

Chair:Shaun Fenton, Headmaster, Reigate Grammar School and Chair-Elect of HMC


10.30 – 10.40


Session 2: School bursary beneficiary

Speakers: Mahin Uddin and Nicole James, both Gershon Scholars  

10.40 -11.15


Session 3: ‘The school bursaries landscape’ – short presentations from the panellists, followed by questions from the floor and discussion

- Parental affordability

- Data

- Statistics

- Benchmarking

- The political climate

- The value and impact of school bursaries


Barnaby Lenon, Chairman, The Independent Schools Council (ISC)

Rhiannon Cutler, Director Baines Cutler Solutions Ltd.

Chair: Keith Budge, Headmaster, Bedales School  

11.15 – 11.30



11.30 – 12.20

Session 4: Workshop (1) – delegates to choose one from the following options: 

1. Fundraising for schools with established bursary programmes: Examples and case studies from small and larger schools; how to keep bursary programmes fresh; ideas about raising the bar

Speakers: Shaun Fenton, Headmaster; Sean Davey, Director of Development, Reigate Grammar School

2. ‘Friend Raising to Fund Raising: How to plan and kick start your campaign’

Speakers: Ben Vessey, Headmaster; Ben Davies, parent; David Brook, Bursar; Rowena Gaston, Director of Development; Canford School. Martin Barker, Headmaster, Westbourne House Prep School   

3. The US model  

Speaker: Glen Fendley, Head of Development, GDST and Chair of Trustees, IDPE

 4. Affordability: Strategic approaches to school finance and widening access  

Speakers:Mark Taylor, Bursar, The King’s School, Canterbury; James Underhill, Director, Underhill Associates; David Woodgate, Chief Executive, ISBA   

 5. Measuring the impact of school bursary programmes

Speaker: Ian Davenport, CEO, RNCF/SpringBoard Bursary Foundation

 6. Recruitment and selection of beneficiaries

Speakers: Amanda Scott, Director of Development; Catriona Sutherland-Hawes, Director of Admissions, Latymer Upper School; James Priory, Headmaster, Portsmouth Grammar School.

 12.20 – 1.20


1.20 – 2.10

 Session 5: Workshop (2) – delegates to choose one from the six options:  

[See Session 4 above]

2.10 – 3.10



Session 6: Plenary – Leadership models and creating effective working relationships between all involved in fundraising and bursaries


  • Ben Vessey, Headmaster; and Rowena Gaston, Director of Development, Canford School
  • Philip Britton MBE, Headmaster; Laura Firth, Head of Development, Bolton School
  • Richard Harman, General Secretary, AGBIS
  • Peter Wells, recently retired Head of Prep at The King’s School, Canterbury

 Chair: To be confirmed

3.10 – 3.30



3.30 - 4.15


 Session 7: Plenary panel – What can we learn from other sectors?

  • Glen Fendley, Head of Development at the Girls’ Day School Trust: Lessons learned from the US study tour
  • Gavin Maggs, Director of Development and Alumni Relations, The University of Bath: The importance of internal audiences

Chair: Sean Davey, Director of Development, Reigate Grammar School

4.15 – 4.35

Session 8: Closing speech from a beneficiary

4.35 - 4.45


Closing remarks and depart