Alumni

If you were a pupil at Wellfield School, or one of our previously known names – A.J Dawson Grammar School, Wellfield A. J Dawson Grammar School, Wellfield Comprehensive School, and Wellfield Community School – we’d love to know what you are doing now.

Please contact Oliver Potts via O.Potts@wellfieldschool.net with the following information:

  • Your name now
  • Your name when you attended
  • The years you attended the school
  • What you have been doing since leaving the school

We would also love to see any memorabilia you have kept from your time at the school.

Notable Alumni

Here at Wellfield, we value EACH and EVERY SINGLE ONE of our students equally, having one over-riding objective with regard to every individual student and that is they ACHIEVE THEIR FULL POTENTIALboth EDUCATIONALLY and SOCIALLY in what is a happy and safe environment.

Many of our youngsters go beyond what can be considered the “norm” – if there is such a thing – and by “going the extra mile” drive on to achieve great success in adult life building on the foundation and hopefully the work ethos that we strive to instil over the 5 most important formative years they spend here with us at Wellfield.

We take great pleasure in learning how our youngsters develop in all aspects of adult life, in the full range of successful careers and through the creation of their own businesses. We also think it important to share and celebrate success and excellence, both within and beyond our shared community and use the attainment and success of our Alumni and Alumnae in order to illustrate “how our youngsters from across our community can excel and achieve real success”

We do this to enthuse and raise our current students’ aspirations and expectations. Many of our Alumni have returned to school to share their experiences and talk to our students to reinforce our shared ethos.
As mentioned above, we take great pleasure in sharing the success of our Alumni and Alumnae and the following “Roll of Honour” illustrates the achievements of some of them. This list is limited only by what we are currently aware of. If you know of additional individuals deserving of recognition, or details that have changed, please contact us here at Wellfield and we will amend this list. Thank you

NameYear 
Reverend Fred Stainthorpe1939-1945Memories of the Reverend Fred Stainthorpe
In mid-September 1939, a hundred and twenty nervous boys and girls stood in the hall of A.J.Dawson Grammar School, Wellfield in the village of Wingate, Co.Durham, wondering what lay before them. I was one of that number. [Read more]
Ted Harrison ArtistTed Harrison is one of Canada’s most popular artists. His love of the land and people of the Yukon has brought him national acclaim. His distinctive style of painting is both colourful and sophisticated yet retains an innocent charm, and appeals to young and old alike. [Read more]
Paul Scott
Consultant/Specialist Orthodontist
GDC Number: 76025, BChD(Leeds), MFGDP(UK), MFDSRCS(Eng), MSc, MOrth(Ed), FDSRCS Orth(Eng)
Paul studied dentistry at Leeds University qualifying in 1999. He then spent several years gaining a broad postgraduate education, working in both NHS and private general dental practice, community and the hospital service in both the UK and New Zealand with posts in Paediatric Dentistry and Maxillofacial Surgery. [Read more...]
Stephen Chapman BA1982 Upon leaving Wellfield, Stephen completed a 5 year apprenticeship locally as a Motor Mechanic before joining the Police Force. Stephen’s career with The Durham Constabulary has seen him promoted through the ranks and gain a wide variety of specialist skills from the different Branches of the Force he takes great pride in serving, he now serves as a Detective Chief Inspector in the Safeguarding Branch.
David Smith
BSc 
1984 David joined the Army on leaving school, serving a full 25 years, working as an Aircraft Technician in the REME, with the rank of Sergeant.  During his Army career, he had postings throughout the world, with active service in Northern Ireland, Iraq, Afghanistan,  and Sierra Leone. Whilst in the Army he studied with the Open University and despite his many postings and active service he earned a degree in Science. Now retired from the Army, he is nearing the end of his teacher training course.
Michael Wilson
BA (Hons) 
1985After leaving University, Michael began his career in broadcasting in Local Radio, progressing into Radio Journalism and eventually into TV  with Channel 5 and SKY TV. Michael’s advancement within the medium of TV progressed, he joined ULSTER TV in Northern Ireland in 2005. In 2008 he was promoted to his current role of Managing Director of the Northern Ireland ITV licensee, where he is responsible also for programme commissioning, regulatory compliance and the programming, communications and resources areas of the business unit.
Richard and Sharon Anderson
(nee Tindle) 
1985Upon leaving Wellfield, Richard joined the  family footwear company. After marrying Sharon, they moved out to Indo-China where they have established their own successful footwear manufacturing company with production plants in Thailand, Vietnam, China and Hong Kong, speaking local languages.
Carolyn Morris
(nee Goyns) LLB 
1985After studying Law at University, Carolyn settled in the Midlands where she now practices as a Solicitor
John and Arlene Anderson
(nee Mason) 
1986 John joined the family footwear company after leaving Wellfield and eventually using his expertise gained over the years he worked in the footwear business he and his wife Arlene established and operate their own footwear import and distribution company WF International Footwear Ltd, of which John is the Managing Director.
Robert Kelly   1986 Robert studied Economics and Computer Studies and started his career with what became HSBC bank as a junior Computer Programmer. Over the years he progressed as a computer programmer and was subsequently promoted into Project Management eventually managing his own Project Team. Further promotions followed and he is currently Global Finance Environment IT Delivery Manager at the Bank’s Data Processing Centre in Sheffield
Stephen Saxby
BEng MBA
1987After leaving Wellfield, Stephen joined Cummins Engineering at their Darlington Plant as an apprentice. He rose through the Engineering structure into Diesel Engine design and Project Engineering, eventually promoted as a member of the Global Engineering Team. He is currently Director of Engineering at Cummins plants in China and he and his family are living in Beijing China.
Jayne Dixon
(nee Smith) BA (Hons)   
1988 Completing her degree in Corporate and Hotel Management at Manchester University Jayne has made a career in Hotel and Catering Management, working for major British chains as well as spending time in New York. Eventually Jayne settled into Facilities Management and has worked in the NHS and Higher Education establishments, she is currently Operational Facilities Manager at Durham University.
Terry Holdcroft
BSc (Hons) 
 1989Terry went on to study Pure Mathematics at Durham University and graduated with a First Class Honours Degree. He worked for a small local company gaining practical experience before joining the NHS at Hartlepool Hospital as a Statistician. He progressed through the Management structure at Hartlepool and eventually was promoted as a Manager with the North Tees and Hartlepool NHS trust, with whom he continues to excel, currently as a member of the Senior Management team serving as Quality and Clinical Excellence Manager.
Dr Lisa Frost
BSc (Hons) PhD  
1990Lisa studied Chemistry at UMIST completing her PhD in Organic Chemistry, this was followed by a post-doctoral research fellowship at Sussex University in the area of Cancer Research. Lisa then worked as a Senior Scientist at Evotec, a Scientific Research company in their Drug Discovery alliance and development partnership, which focuses on rapidly progressing innovative products working with leading pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. [Read more...]
Cdr. Catherine Jordan
RN LLB (nee Maley) 
1991Catherine joined the Royal Navy as a University Cadet Aviator and studied Law, graduating in 1997 when she followed up her initial Navy training by qualifying as a helicopter pilot, serving through the 2003 Iraq war. Her service with the Navy continued and she was promoted through the Officer Structure in various Officer roles until in 2010 she was given Command of her first Ship. In 2012 she was promoted to Commander, she has been Commanding Officer of HMS St Albans, a Type 23 Frigate since 2013.
David Tempest
BSc (Hons) MBA (Oxon.) 
1991After graduating from University, David joined the Anglo/Dutch Scientific Publishing company Reed-Elsevier as a Publishing Editor working on a range of Scientific Journals. He was promoted through the Management Structure of the company and served in a range of positions, specialising in Electronic Publishing. He is currently based in Oxford and Amsterdam as Director of Universal Access, working with Universities throughout the World.
Paul Scott
BChD MSc, MFGDP, MFDSRCS, FDSRCS Orth.
1991 Paul studied Dentistry and qualified from Leeds University in 1999. He spent a number of years gaining experience of dental practice both in the UK and New Zealand gaining Membership of General Dental Practice and Dental Surgery awarded by the Royal College of Surgeons. In 2007 Paul gained a Master Degree in Orthodontics and subsequently Membership in Orthodontics from the Royal College of Surgeons. Continuing work in Dentistry and Orthodontics in Leeds, further developing his specialism in Orthodontics culminated in 2012, when he was awarded a Fellowship in Orthodontics. Paul is currently working in Specialist Practice and holds a part-time Consultant post, specializing in Cleft Lip and Palate correction at Doncaster and Mexborough Hospitals.
Dr Steven Cammiss
LLB LLM PhD
1991Steven studied Law at university in London, gaining both Bachelor and Master of Law Degrees. Having obtained his Degrees, Steven moved to Warwick University, where he took up a Graduate Teaching role whilst he studied and researched for his PhD. He joined the Law School at Birmingham University in 2002 as a Lecturer specialising in teaching criminal law, criminology and competition law. In 2007 he moved to the School of Law at Leicester University. His main research interests are in the field of the administration of criminal justice, with an emphasis on mode of trial. In 2013, Steven was promoted to the post of Senior Lecturer in Law at Leicester, a post he continues in.
Lesley-Ann McDermott (nee Buxton) 
BA (Hons) PGCE 
1991 Lesley Ann gained her Honours Degree and completed a PGCE at Lancaster before beginning her teaching career. She has taught History & RE in Secondary Schools across the North-East since 1997, including 5 years here at Wellfield.  Additional to her teaching, Lesley Ann’s responsibilities included Head of History, Study Support, Gifted & Talented & Literacy Coordinator. SSAT Lead Practitioner, National CPD presenter & teacher trainer. She is currently teaching in Stockton.
Jerome Iveson
BA (Hons) 
1992   Jerome studied Graphic Communication at The University of Wolverhampton, graduating in 1997. Whilst at University, he developed an interest in Web Design for the growing Internet market and after graduating he established his own Web Design Consultancy – Distil Design Ltd. He built up his expertise and client base over the 11 years he was associated with the Consultancy. In 2008, Jerome established his own specialist company - Thrive, where he works with his small team developing aspects of computer software to make the best business management solutions for the design and creative companies and consultancies. Thrive is currently developing specialised “Cloud” based software applications for clients.
Nick Decosemo 1992 Whilst at Dundee University, Nick moved in a wide circle of friends including musicians etc. and it was here that working with the likes of Gary Lightbody (Snow Patrol) he continued to develop his interest and love of popular electronic music. He developed his musical career in DJ and music as a member of the bands DedRekoning and Freeform Five. As an aside Nick worked as a music journalist and eventually served as Deputy Features Editor of FHM and in 2007 became Editor of the music magazine MixMag, a role he continues with, whilst at the same time making and playing his specialist brand of music – Electronic and Clubbing mixes, appearing as a guest DJ on BBC  Radio 1
David Anderson
BSc (Hons) MSc
1992David studied Chemistry at University, graduating in 1999 when he took up various roles within the Chemical Processing Industries. He went back to Brunel University in 2010 and studied Advanced Manufacturing Systems, gaining a MSc with Distinction. He moved to Canada to further his career and is currently a Consultant in Chemical/Scientific Engineering
Dr. Amy Anderson
BSc (Hons) PhD 
1995Amy studied Medical Biochemistry at Birmingham University, graduating in 2000. She then won a Research Scholarship at Imperial College London where she studied and carried out research in Immunology and Genetics. She was awarded her Doctorate in 2005. She is currently working as a Research Associate at Newcastle University
Tommy Miller
Professional Footballer
1995From an early age, Tommy was part of the youth system of Ipswich Town but signed as a professional for local team Hartlepool United where he developed before being re-signed by Ipswich Town and for whom he re-signed and played for on 2 separate occasions including UEFA Cup ties. In a long career, Tommy played Premiership Football with Sunderland AFC plus a range of Football League clubs. Tommy missed out on International Football, when in 2005 he was selected to play for Scotland against Wales but unfortunately suffered an injury leading up to the game and consequently missed out on his International Cap.
Lisa McAdam (nee Hinton)
BA 
1996  Lisa graduated from University and her first role was as Learn Direct Co-ordinator back at Wellfield School. She gained a PGCE and subsequently joined the Teaching Staff, working within the English department. She still teaches English and is currently the school’s Literacy manager and KS4 English Language co-ordinator.
Christopher Anderson
BSc (Hons) MSc
1996Christopher studied Computer Studies and Artificial Intelligence at Derby University, graduating in 2001. He then achieved a Master Degree  in Computer Aided Graphical Technology. He then made his career in Computing and is now a Network Programmer for BlinkBox in London.
Leanne Devine (nee Patterson)
BA (Hons) PGCE 
1996Upon graduating from University, with an Honours Degree in Early Childhood Studies, Leanne also obtained a qualification in British Sign Language. She then studied and subsequently was awarded a PGCE from Durham University. Leanne commenced her teaching career in 2002 at Wheatley Hill Primary School, proudly returning to the primary school that she attended as a young girl. She has remained a member of the teaching staff, gaining promotion over the years and is now a member of the Senior Leadership Team and teacher of Year 5 pupils. Leanne is subject leader for English and PE and is also charged with developing the school Library and fostering children’s love of reading. She takes the school lead with regard to Rights, Respecting School, Global Learning and Junior Road Safety, as well as being Collective Worship and British Values coordinator.
Adele Mutton (nee Henderson)
BA (Hons) PGCE  
1996   Adele graduated with an Honours Degree in RE and Philosophy before completing her PGCE at Durham University. She then took a number of years to raise a family before joining Wellfield as a Learning Assistant. She gained further high level qualifications as a specialist in the teaching of children with Special Educational Needs, including children who suffer with dyslexia and autism. She currently serves as Assistant Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator at Wellfield.
Stephen Richardson
BA (Hons), PGCE  
1996    Stephen graduated from Northumbria University with an Honours degree in History and went on to complete his PGCE at Newcastle University. He worked as a primary school teacher for several years before taking up his current role as International Student Centre Co-ordinator for the Methodist Church in Newcastle and serving as chaplain to Newcastle University. [Read more...]

Laura Talbott (nee Fisher)
BSc (Hons) PGCE 
1999 Laura graduated from Durham University with an Honours Degree in Science and took a PGCE as a follow-up. She entered the education profession as a Secondary School Teacher of Science in Middlesbrough until she was appointed as Head of the Science Department here at Wellfield, a post she has held since 2014.
Philip Richardson
BA (Hons), MMus,Dip Ed (Higher), ABRSM
1999    Philip was always interested and participated in all things music, so on leaving Wellfield followed through an academic career based around the study and practice of music. Graduating from Newcastle University with both First Class Honours and Masters Degrees, subsequently adding a Teaching Diploma. Matched to that, Phil’s practical mastery of the piano keyboard advanced to extreme proficiency and he now is recognised locally, nationally and internationally as the virtuoso he has become. [Read more...]
Chris Cowan
BMus (Jazz, Popular and Commercial Music)
1999   Chris discovered a passion for popular music during a project here at Wellfield school called "making music work". Since when he has developed skills as a singer/songwriter and has sold albums all over the world. Chris continues his practice as a hard working musician and takes part in well over 100 live performances every year, as well as teaching others, writing, recording and producing music. Claypath, - a long term collaboration with his friend and colleague Phil Richardson, has been a huge part of Chris's professional career and together they continue to deliver acclaimed live performances and original material. Life-long study is important to Chris and he actively pursues learning opportunities. Recently Chris spent time in Colorado, America studying specific Roots music techniques. Since 2003, music education has had major part to play in Chris's life. The music courses Chris runs in local colleges, have produced some of the best young musicians in the North East. Chris designs and delivers music courses and in 2014 wrote and received validation for an exciting new Foundation Degree in Roots and Popular Music.
David Coulson2000David Coulson – Chef and Restaurateur
Upon leaving school, David joined the kitchen staff of The Castle Eden Inn, as a humble kitchen porter. This was to be the start of a most illustrious and successful career in “culinary art” and high-end restaurant food specialism. David has operated as a chef at all levels from his humble beginnings as a kitchen assistant and developed his skills, expertise and creativity, working alongside some of the best Chefs, including Michelin Starred Chefs, in some of the finest restaurants in The North of England. David’s expertise and creativity received National prominence and acclaim as a result of his appearances and success in reaching the final of BBC tv’s MasterChef : The Professionals. Since this exposure of his skills, David has built a palmarès to be proud of. With a wide range of awards including 2 “Knives and Forks” in The Michelin Guide and 2 “AA Rosettes”. Since 2013, David has owned the very successful “Peace and Loaf” Restaurant in Jesmond, where he is also The Executive Chef. In the years since David developed the restaurant his expertise and ability have been enhanced further with the award of “Winner Best Restaurant in the 2015 Secret Diner Awards”, “Best Local Restaurant in the 2016 Good Food Guide” and “North East Best Restaurant Award 2017”.
Richard Anderson
BDS   
2003Richard graduated from Newcastle University with a Batchelor of Dental Surgery degree in 2010, since when he has worked as an Associate Dentist in a mixed NHS/Private practice in Leeds. He is currently working towards his MFGDP qualification.
Katie Davies
BA (Hons) NJTC 
2004Katie studied History at University and upon graduating in 2009 she studied for and was successful in gaining an additional qualification in Journalism - NJTC. She joined the Newcastle Journal/Evening Chronicle stable of newspapers as a Junior Reporter. Since then she has steadily climbed the competitive ladder that is newspaper journalism and has gained an advanced NJTC qualification and is now Chief Reporter at the newspapers. In 2013 she was on a shortlist of 6 nominees for the Society of Editors Regional Press awards for the prestigious National Young Reporter of the Year held in London. Katie has recently been appointed as a journalist with The Daily Mail and will shortly take up her role working on the Electronic version of the newspaper, MailOnline, this will involve moving to her new base in Sydney, Australia.
Andrew John Longstaff
MChem (Hons) 
2006Andrew graduated from Newcastle University with a First Class Honours Master Degree in Chemistry, including a successful Industrial Placement with the Dutch Chemical giant AkzoNobel. He is currently studying for his PhD in Polymer Chemistry at Durham University.
Hannah Hutchinson2010Hannah Hutchinson left Wellfeild in 2010, and studied Civil Engineering at Newcastle College before moving to Leeds and studying Construction Management graduating with a 2:1 at Leeds Beckett University, she now works for Galliford Try, North East and Yorkshire as a Site Manager and will be building the new Teaching and Learning Building for Durham University this year.
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