Standout Breakout Shoutout

Meet the Staff

Here you can discover a little about the staff at Meltham CE Primary School.


Phil Gibbins, Headteacher & Designated Safeguarding Lead


I began working at Meltham in September 2011, but when I’m not here working with your children, I have a wife (Maria, who is also a teacher) and three children (Elliot – a girl, Sam and Daniel) who keep me very busy and also very happy indeed. 

Since moving across Huddersfield from Netherhall Learning Campus, I have worked as a class teacher in Year 6 – where I tried my best to make Key Stage 2 SATs year as exciting as it possibly can be - I progressed to deputy headteacher before becoming the headteacher in September 2020. I must have done something right over the past few years! This job is very varied, but one of the perks is that I get the chance to wander right across the school – from Foundation Stage up into Key Stage One, and onward through Key Stage Two.  This is a part of my job that I especially enjoy as it lets me learn a thing or two from our fantastic teachers, and gives me the opportunity to interact with all of the children in school (not just my own bunch).

I haven’t always been a teacher though.  Before following my wife into education, I worked unsuccessfully in the banking industry; tried (on more than one occasion) to write a book – it turned out I wasn’t as good as I thought I was; and before that, I studied to earn my undergraduate degree in Geography, my Masters degree in Hydrology and my PGCE to enter teaching.  When I do get the occasional spare minute, I enjoy reading, doodling, travelling, playing a little electric guitar (in private of course), running (when the weather’s fine and I can find my shoes), swimming and spending time with friends.

Gill Turner, Deputy Headteacher & Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead

I’ve worked at Meltham CE since 2009, after teaching in Rochdale for 13 years!  I currently work in year 3 one day a week as a class teacher whilst working as Deputy Head Teacher. I love to teach all subjects but my preference is definitely maths – I love a challenge!

Out of school I enjoy taking part in amateur dramatics and am currently rehearsing for ‘Betty BlueEyes’ with Spot On Theatre Company.  I now live in Holmfirth with my husband and 2 girls and we enjoy holidaying abroad.


Sarah Drake, Year 6 Teacher & Assistant Headteacher, SENco

(currently on maternity leave)



I originally trained as a secondary ICT teacher at Edge Hill University. I was a supply teacher for 1 year all over Calderdale and Kirklees during this time I made the decision to pursue my career in Primary Schools as I enjoyed it so much. I joined Meltham CE in 2013, where I have become part of such a fab team and taught such vibrant children.

During my time outside of school I enjoy reading fiction, walking and spending time with my family and friends.


James Baseford Year 6 teacher and Assistant Headteacher, SENco 

Emma Wimpenny, Foundation Stage Teacher

I’ve been a teacher for 8 years and a Mummy for just over 1 – both of which occupations I love! My son, Danny, entertains most of my waking hours, but when I have chance, I love playing my flute, listening to music (particularly Bob Marley), yoga, running and watching films.

Nicola Mottram, Foundation Stage Teacher

Jenny Osborne, Foundation Stage  Lead and Class 2 Teacher
(currently on maternity leave)


I was lucky enough to begin my teacher training here at Meltham CE back in 2017. I began as a Foundation Stage teacher in early 2018 and I am enjoying every minute! I am a music graduate with a passion for singing, piano and violin and alongside that I really enjoy sports such as netball and football. 

Rachel Taylor, Year 1 Teacher

I have worked at Meltham C of E school for most of my teaching career. I have always taught in KS1 and, as having a degree in music, found myself becoming the schools music co-ordinator.

I live in Skelmanthorpe and have two grown up children who both attended Meltham C of E. My daughter, Charlotte, is currently living in Manchester and working for Ryan Air and Daniel is hoping to become a junior doctor aftyer studying at Leicester University.

I am a playing member of Skelmanthorpe Prospect Brass and I am also secretary for the whole organisation. I also enjoy line dancing. Anyone who knows me well knows that I love animals and now that my children are grown up I have acquired a stray cat as well as two rabbits, one of which, Ben, lives at school during term time and comes home with me for weekends and holidays.

Emma Pyke, Year 1 Teacher
Charlotte Hives, Year 2 Teacher

Bethany Varley, Year 2 Teacher
(currently on maternity leave)


I made my return to Meltham CE School in September 2015 after coming to school here myself from 1998 – 2005, I just couldn’t stay away!

I am a Foundation Stage teacher – which I love! Every day is different within the classroom and the school, but ensuring the children receive a broad and balanced curriculum whilst having fun is my favourite part. I graduated in July 2015 with a First Class Honours degree in Primary Education from the University of Huddersfield after studying there for 3 years. I have a passion for getting young children into PE and sport and started coordinating Dance and Gymnastics within the school in September 2016. I danced 4 times a week up until the age of 16 and taught lessons here and there, I loved every minute of it but due to starting college I had to make extra time to study!

I am a very creative person and I love anything to do with art and crafts which I use within my teaching when suitable. I have two young nephews who I love spending my free time with and exploring for bugs and grubs and even the Gruffalo in the woods! In October 2016 I adopted two kittens, Jelly and Bean who keep me busy and entertained every day and my class love to see pictures of them and hear stories about their mischievous ways.

Vicky Taithe, Year 3 Teacher

Since joining the Meltham CE Primary School team in September 2007, I have been a class teacher in lower key stage two. I love teaching in Year 3 as we feel close to Key Stage One and Foundation Stage whilst we are helping children embark on their journey into key stage two. This is very important to me as subject leader for
English, as I strive to work with all year groups to ensure we provide children with the best books to inspire them and help them to develop as keen and confident readers.

I am also responsible for teaching French and teach all of our Key Stage Two pupils. When I am setting up for French lessons, we often sneak a few minutes to have a chat about great books in English and share recommendations too! 

I have a degree in French language and literature and, before I became a primary school teacher, this helped me to secure jobs in the hotel industry and universities in both the UK and France and in our local textile industry. This is why I am so keen for our pupils to learn another language – it really can open doors.

Rebecca Myers, Foundation and PPA Teacher

I graduated in 2002 with a BA Hons degree in English and History; I then went on to gain a PGCE in Primary Education in 2004. After working as a supply teacher for a short while, I began working at Meltham CE in October 2004. I began my time at Meltham by completing my NQT year in Year 4 then moved down to Year One, where I have been since 2007! I love the variety every day in key stage 1 brings, the children make my job rewarding every day! 

I returned to full time work in 2016, after working part time whilst looking after my two children. Outside of work my two children, Neve and Poppy, keep me very busy! Climbing, walking and cycling are some of the activities we pursue as a family – anything to burn off energy! I also enjoy running, reading and travelling.

Tracy Aspey, Year 4 Teacher
Carl Aspey, Year 4 Teacher

I started at Meltham C.E Primary school in January 1995 when Mr Middleton was head teacher. Following my Art degree at Derby University, I was the Art and display coordinator to begin with. A few years later I was asked what I thought of computers, my answer “I like them”….that was it, I was now ICT coordinator. At the time we had chalk boards, a few old BBC computers and one dusty PC in the office. So I didn’t have a lot to coordinate to start with, but it wasn’t long before we had a computer suite, in the former library and now the front office.

I spent a short while away from Meltham C.E School when I worked for two terms as a seconded ICT Advisor for Kirklees in 2001, coming back as a so called ‘floating’ Yr2 teacher for a term, an interesting title for an interesting term! The rest of my time has been spent in either Yr5 or as currently in Yr4.

I am a governor and enjoy being an active part of the PSA.  When I first came, someone (who had been at the school a while) told me I was very lucky to be starting my career at a school where people tend to stay. I didn’t understand what they meant at the time, I think I do now, and I understand why!

Kate Watson, Year 5 Teacher

Naomi Ellis, Year 5 Teacher

I have been a teacher at Meltham CE Primary School for two years after graduating from the University of Hull in 2014.  Having loved being at the school as a pupil I was very excited to start my teaching career here.  In my downtime (when I'm not jetting around the World!) I enjoy listening to music, shopping and watching films.  My ambition is to continue exploring the different continents.

Jonathan Davies, Year 5 Teacher

Joanna Mitchell, Year 6 Teacher

(currently on maternity leave)


Scott Charlesworth, Year 6 Teacher

Stephanie Bartholet, Art & Dance PPA Teacher

I have worked within education for over 20 years. Happily, as a class teacher and then specialising in art as the Advanced Skilled Teacher of Art for Kirklees, a role involving advising, supporting colleagues, providing model lessons and supporting induction of new teachers and leading professional development.I have also enjoyed working as a freelance artist- creating art, painting landscapes for private commissions, exhibiting in local galleries – leading art and dance workshops.

I later went on to work as a freelance Art consultant for Cape UK, Huddersfield Art gallery and later Kirklees Learning Service- I have managed and led art projects in schools, galleries and the local community, carried out action research into community cohesion, carried out neighborhood housing projects, planned artists in schools visits, supported Inset training and organized art network meetings for primary and secondary teachers in the Arts. I am passionate about the arts and am presently enjoying working at Meltham C of E delivering an Art and Dance curriculum to the pupils.I have a love for all things vintage and run Bubzi – a place where I trade in handpicked retro clothing and homewares.Born in Huddersfield – now living in Holmfirth. Family life consists of my husband, step- daughter, son and daughter and of course Bobby the yorkie!

Wendy Haynes, Year 3 Teacher

I have been teaching at Meltham CE Primary School since September 2014. I have been teaching since 1996 and have taught in primary schools in Manchester, Stockport and Oldham. I have spent the majority of time teaching Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 but I also spent a year teaching Year 5 and two years teaching in Year 3 and 4. During my teaching career I have been a Literacy Key Skills teacher, a KS1 leader and have also been the coordinator of ICT, Literacy, Music, PSHE and RE. 

I attended Sheffield University where I gained a Bed Hons in Mathematics. After university I spent time travelling through Australia.  I gained a love of travelling and have had many wonderful experiences such as teaching English in Poland, building paths and dry stone walls in Croatia and researching the teaching of steel pans in Trinidad. My last teaching post was at St Mary’s Primary School in Greenfield which is where my children attend. I live in Greenfield with my husband, 2 daughters and 2 cats.

Charlotte Sanderson, Year 4 and PPA Teacher


Suzanne Hudson, PPA Teacher KS1


Julia Stocks, Year 2 teacher


Adele Ingham, Cover Supervisor


I have been a Teaching Assistant at Meltham CE since 2015 after volunteering in classrooms while working as a Lunchtime Supervisor. I really enjoy working with the youngest children in the school, its immensely rewarding to see little minds grow.

My son is the 3rd generation of my family to attend Meltham CE School, after me and my dad. We have 2 cats, April and Clooney. One day I dream of owning a llama. As a family we enjoy cooking, films and spending time together. In my spare time I enjoy releasing my creativity by painting, drawing and inking. 

Donna Robb, Year 1 Teaching Assistant

I have worked at Meltham CE since 2012. I am currently working in Foundation stage as a teaching assistant but have also briefly worked in years 2 and 3, having started my time at the school as a lunchtime supervisor.

I live in Meltham with my husband, 2 children and our dog Tilly. As a family we enjoy spending as much time as possible outside walking the dog and geocaching along the way!

Sian Parker, Year 2 Teaching Assistant

In 2008 I decided to volunteer as a parent helper at Meltham CE as I had a few free hours to offer. I discovered I loved working with the children so decided on a career change (I had previously worked in admin) and completed a course to qualify as a teaching assistant.  I also trained as a paediatric first aider.  I was lucky enough to be offered the role of teaching assistant in Reception in 2010.

I now work in Year One and find my role very varied and very satisfying. It is wonderful to watch the children learn and grow so much over the course of a year!

I am married with two sons and most weekends find me at various kart tracks, cheering on my youngest son who takes part in a number of karting championships. On a rare free weekend I enjoy, baking, reading, eating out and indulging in my love of photography.

Linda McNeil, Year 1 Teaching Assistant

At present I work as a teaching assistant in year 1 which I have done since 2007. I started at Meltham C of E over twenty years ago as a lunchtime supervisor alongside working with various children throughout the school on a 1 to 1 basis. I enjoy my job and interacting with the children.

I used to work as a secretary for a solicitor before I had my children.  I have two grown up children both of whom attended this school and one Grandchild. I love visiting London where my Son lives and I enjoy going to the theatre. I also enjoy walking in the Lakes with my husband Alan and golden retriever Maizie.

Hayley Taylor, Teaching Assistant

I started working at Meltham C of E primary school in September 2015. Never did I think I would work at the school I attended as a child!!

Prior to working here I was on the psa and a voluntary parent at Meltham C of E. I worked for Huddersfield and Calderdale NHS trust for over 20 years working with sick children. I loved my time working on the children's ward and the rest of the time in the community.

I am married and a mum to two lovely children who also attend the school. So far I am loving working here and extremely grateful this opportunity arose. The children here are a pleasure to work with and give you so much to smile about! . In my spare time I like to tread the boards and perform in musicals and plays locally.


Paula Spittlehouse, Foundation Stage Teaching Assistant


Kristie-Leigh Charlton, Foundation Stage Teaching Assistant


Stephanie Helliwell,  Teaching Assistant


Lisa Shepherd, Teaching Assistant


Dawn Coldwell, Year 1 Teaching Assistant

Katie Kenny, Teaching Assistant
Caroline Booth, Year 2 Teaching Assistant
I have been working at Meltham C of E since June 2014. My role is a teaching assistant. I currently support pupils in year 2, although in the past I have worked in year 1 and foundation stage. I also work as a lunchtime supervisor. I have a level 3 Diploma in supporting teaching and learning in school.

I began my role supporting children in education at St James's Church and Meltham Community Pre-school. Many children that I work with now are those that I have supported since my days at pre-school. It is wonderful to see how they have progressed with their learning since their early years. I feel that I am constantly learning and my role is very rewarding.

I have three fantastic boys who keep me extremely busy with all the different activities they do and one very helpful husband! When I have time for myself I enjoy pottering around the garden, cooking, walking and shopping.
Gilly Peace,  Teaching Assistant

I started working as a teaching assistant at Meltham CE Primary School in 2013 working five mornings in year 3 and three afternoons in year 5. I am also a lunchtime supervisor. I have two boys who both came to the school. I am a level 2 teaching assistant and I'm trained in first aid. I also run a lunchtime colouring club once a week.

My husband and I enjoy taking our dog out walking, the boys aren't quite as interested in muddy treks anymore! As a family we love spending time with friends, playing video and board games, watching films and relaxing together.

Louise Bull, Year 4 Teaching Assistant

My association with Meltham C of E began around 17 years ago when the first of our three girlsstarted school here. I first came into school as a parent helper helping with swimming in the school pool, reading and accompanying many school trips. I currently work as a lunchtime supervisor and teaching assistant in year 4, run an after school sports club with a friend and am involved with the organisation and training of teams representing the school at many sporting events.

Outside school I enjoy playing/umpiring hockey, holidays, theatre trips ,eating out and socialisingwith family and friends.


Lindsey Muir, Year 4 Teaching Assistant

Claire Needham, Year 6 Teaching Assistant
Sharon Mellor, Year 5 Teaching Assistant
I have been working at Meltham School since 2011 as a Teaching Assistant in Year 5.   My 4 children attended this school and during this time I worked voluntarily in the Library, Cooking Club  and Knitting Club.  When not in school, I love spending time with my family and friends and walking my two dogs.
Dawn Stier, Year 6 Teaching Assistant

I started at Meltham CE Primary school as a year 3 teaching assistant in 2007 and current support year 6.  I look forward to the annual residential trip to Robinwood as it's great to share the children's achievements outside of the classroom. I am also a cover supervisor leading the class which sees me interacting with children across the whole school.

I hold a PGCE in Further Education, a degree in Business & Finance and am first aid trained.  I previously worked as a lecturer at a sixth form college before starting a family. My husband and I have two beautiful girls and a crazy dog who we enjoy walking with and spending time with family and friends.

Margaret Widdop, HTLA

After starting work at Meltham CE in 1997 as a parent helper I have had many different roles, - such as lunchtime supervisor, classroom support and cover supervisor.  I have a love of maths and in 2007 decided to go to night school and do my A level in pure maths and mechanics which I passed with high grades. The main aspect of my current role of HLTA (Higher Level Teaching Assistant) sees me working alongside teachers to improve maths in KS2. When necessary I still cover for absent teachers in all other year groups, however a lot of my time is spent in year 6 primarily leading up to SATs.

Outside of school I enjoy going to the gym - particularly Zumba classes - this I do to counteract the fact that I also enjoy cooking and eating out. I also love the sun and my summer holiday abroad is something I particularly look forward.

Family is important to me and my husband Peter and I have 3 grown up children and four beautiful (I am biased of course) granddaughters who we spend many a happy hour playing with at weekends and often staying over!

Caroline Pearson, Cover, Support, Speech & Language

I have been working at Meltham CE since September 2008, where I started as the ETA for both year 4 classes. Since then my role has changed, initially supporting maths throughout the school, to my current role of supporting reading in Key Stage 1. My other duties include; cover supervisor, speech and language support, cooking and gardening in the curriculum and finally running the out of school Let's Get Cooking Club.

I love a challenge and have throughout the years at Meltham, organized large scale events such as the farmers’ market, breakfast, healthy eating weeks and enabling the school to be awarded the bronze and silver awards for Food for Life.

In 2009 I gained a Foundation degree in supporting learning and in 2011 gained Higher Level Teaching Assistant status (HLTA). I have attended a number of courses for teaching cookery in school through the Children Food Trust and hold a current Health and Hygiene qualification and first aid.

Outside school, I am a Brownie leader, which I have been for over 30 years, and hold the important role of the treasurer for Huddersfield Dartmouth Division guides. Finally in my spare time I enjoy taking my labrador for walks and both my husband and myself love to cook, eating out and going to the theatre.

Danielle Durie, Learning Mentor
Jackie Oldham, School Business Manager

I began working at Meltham CE School as Admin. Officer in 2008 and gained the position of Business Manager in 2013.  Previously I had the role of Admin. Officer at Cowlersley Primary School, where I worked for 4 years.

Prior to having my two children I worked in the textile industry.  I held several positions, my first role was as a Production Manager for a cloth finishing company and latterly I had a career selling textile machinery.  This allowed me to travel extensively around the world.  It was very enjoyable but also very demanding.  I continued to study whilst working gaining qualifications in Business, Finance, Marketing and Management which was of great benefit in helping me gain the role I now have in School.

Alice Gahan, Business Support Officer

Sara Hogan, Business Support Officer

Frances MacBeth, Senior Business Support Officer

Nigel Turner, IT Technician
Pete Nicholaides, Caretaker

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