Local Committee Profiles

Parent Volunteers

James nellist

Mr James Nellist

I have a degree in architecture from University College London. In my last year at University I started my first business which proved to be the beginning of an entrepreneurial career in start-up business, product innovation and company turnarounds. I moved to Witney with my young family nearly 20 years ago to turn around a loss making small business. I managed the business to a £6m turnover and established it as a UK market leader in its sector. I successfully sold the business in 2006 to a listed company. I am now a business investor and small residential property developer.

Having run businesses of different types and sizes I have gained expertise in business management, staff motivation, IT, computer programming, data analysis and business operations which I hope will be of use in helping support the school.  I am dyslexic and throughout school I needed extra learning support.

I have a keen interest in special education needs and equal opportunity for all. As a Parent Volunteer on the Local Committee I would hope to support the School to continue going from strength to strength.  I am the SEND Lead Volunteer.


Academy Appointed volunteers

Hilary Davan Wetton courtesy filskifoto





Dr Hilary Davan Wetton

Committee Chair


Hilary combined a career as a performing musician and a teacher until 2006, when he fully embraced the excitement of freelance conducting. He was successively Director of Music at Cranleigh School in Surrey and St Paul's Girls' School in London.  Between these two posts he was Founding Head of Music Service in Milton Keynes and Community Director of Music. 

He is currently  Music Director of the City of London Choir, Associate Conductor of the London Mozart Players, Artistic Director of the Military Wives Choirs and Music Director of the Jersey Symphony Orchestra.

He has had a lifetime commitment to music making with young people and is currently Chapel Music Advisor at Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford.  He served as a governor of Tonbridge Grammer School 2007 - 2011.


Helen marshall

Mrs Helen Marshall

My husband and I have lived in Witney for 20 years during which time we had a break of 3 years when we lived in Erlangen, Germany through my husband’s work. We have 3 children, one of whom went to Wood Green, and two who went to Henry Box . I work part time on the Adolescent Unit at the Children’s Hospital in Oxford as a Paediatric Nurse. My interests include all things German (we host German students throughout the year), and music (I am learning the cello).  I run a toddlers music group in Witney and enjoy singing. I am the Committee's Safeguarding Lead .

Rachel breward governorMrs Rachel Breward

I am Academic Registrar at Oriel College, University of Oxford, and in this role I am responsible for academic-related student welfare, co-ordinating equality & diversity issues for students and academic related strategy at Oriel.  I have worked in the Higher Education sector for almost a decade. In my occupation I particularly enjoy working with students, and understanding their challenges.  

I am Treasurer of Sacred Heart Church in Blackbird Leys, and run a Brownie pack in Abingdon.  I enjoy working with others to promote a common aim, and I would like to work with the rest of the Local Committee at Henry Box to uphold the school’s ethos and strategy.

Staff volunteers

Wendy hemmingsley

Ms Wendy Hemmingsley 


Ms Hemmingsley joined the school in September 2013 and has served on senior leadership teams in both Oxfordshire and Nottinghamshire. As Headteacher, she has overall responsibility for the standards across the school, with a focus on improving student achievement through high challenge and high support. Ms Hemmingsley leads on the promotion of the school’s core purpose, vision and values. By building on the many strengths of The Henry Box School, she is responsible for ensuring that there is a culture of continuous improvement with high quality learning and teaching at the centre. Ms Hemmingsley aims for Henry Box to continue to be a school where everyone is given the opportunity to achieve their best.

Olivia McPhee


I joined The Henry Box School in September 2018.  I have had a varied career, which has included working for a major fashion label, a London advertising agency and more recently as a caseworker for an MP and government minister.  My role at school is Assistant SENDCo and I am also a Henry Box parent.

I am currently studying for a post graduate certificate in understanding and managing social, emotional and mental health difficulties in children and young people.