Meet the Members

Julia Attridge

Julia qualified as an accountant specialising in the public sector in 1990.  In 1995, she moved to work for the professional body, CIPFA.  There, she became an education professional, responsible for the education and training of accountants in the UK and overseas. In 2003 Julia gained an MBA and shortly after decided to add to her education expertise and give something back to the community by becoming a school governor. She chose the primary school which her children had attended many years before, which had for some years experienced severe difficulties, moving in and out of special measures. Julia had been a governor for around 8 years when in 2012 the school joined the HEARTS Academy Trust.  She believes that joining HEARTS has resulted in a fundamental improvement to the school and its governance and was delighted to accept an invitation to contribute to the Trust.


Gill Hopkins

Gill's background was in teaching and training.  After completion of a PGCE at the Urban Studies Centre in Stepney she taught geography in Yorkshire.  She also worked as part of the North Yorkshire Staff Development Team and with the Counselling and Career Development Unit at Leeds University.  On returning to Essex Gill ran the Teacher’s Centre in Chelmsford and also worked on teacher training programmes.  Whilst her children were young she worked part time at the FE College in Southend and then returned full time to teaching in a primary school.  In 2000 Gill took up a Headship of a failing Church of England Primary School which she successfully turned around to ‘outstanding’ before she left in 2007 to be ordained in the Anglican Church.


Gill served as curate in the Wickford and Runwell Team Ministry and was a governor at Wickford C/E School.  In 2010 she joined the Waltham Holy Cross Team Ministry and served as Team Vicar at the Church of the Holy Innocents, High Beach and Chaplain for Epping Forest and the Lee Valley.  The Chaplaincy was about developing ways to enable visitors to the outdoors to pay attention to their spiritual wellbeing.


Gill has ‘Permission to Officiate in the Diocese of Chelmsford’ following her retirement from full time ministry in February 2016.  She is Vice Chair of the Diocesan Board of Education and the Diocesan Member for the Hearts Academy.  Gill works as a volunteer for the Friends of Epping Forest at High Beach Visitor Centre and is also involved with a group welcoming Syrian refugees.


Gill is an‘Essex’ girl by birth and is married to Richard who was born in Australia.  They have two children who have followed their parents into the world of education.  Richard and Gill love all that London has to offer and also enjoy travelling, so they have moved close to a tube station to facilitate their movements.


Michael Maguire

Mick graduated from Queen Mary UOL in Classics and was a management Trainee with Dunlop Tyre Company and held senior management roles in the defence industry locally. He is now retired and has been a foundation governor at The Wickford C of E school for many years. Until 2013 he was vice-chair of the Governing Body and the nominated governor for health and safety. At the formation of HEARTS Academy Trust in 2011 he was appointed a Director.  Mick’s other interests include golf, French language and book club.


Vaughan Collier

Vaughan was born and educated in Essex until he was 13 when his family moved to Hertfordshire. He gained the Certificate of Education from London University and the BA Open University then a Masters in Educational Research from Anglia Ruskin University.


Vaughan taught for 8 years in Stevenage as then as Deputy Head of a new primary school in Rushden, Northants.  His first headship was in Havering and then he secured a second headship in Billericay, Essex. He was a member of the Billericay Community Trust and Head of a consistently outstanding school until his retirement from full time employment. He continues, on a part time basis, to be involved in Initial Teacher Training.


Vaughan is a Foundation Governor at Briscoe Primary School and Nursery and an active member of St Gabriel’s Church, Pitsea.




Hearts Academy Trust


2 Mount Road



SS11 8HE


Company number 7851097




T. 01268 572672









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