• video_forest



Members of Burnley College's Governing Board


Chair of the Governing Board, Remuneration Committee and Vice Chair of the Search & Governance Committee

David Meakin is Chair of the Governing Board, a position he has held since 2014. A qualified Accountant David holds a BSc(Hons) degree in Mathematics. David began a 35 year career with the NHS after leaving school, working in Nottingham, Birmingham and Aylesbury before arriving in Burnley. When David retired from the NHS in 2005 he was Director of Finance and Deputy Chief Executive.

Vice Chair of the Governing Board, Chair of Search & Governance Committee and Member of the Remuneration Committee

David J Brown has been a Governor at the College since 2005 and worked as Burnley Borough Council’s Director of Environment prior to his retirement. He held responsibility for Planning and Environment, Street-scene and Markets services.

College Principal

Karen Buchanan has recently been appointed as Principal of Burnley College and CEO of THEMIS. She was previously Deputy Principal of the College appointed in September 2011. Karen has worked in Further Education since starting as a part time computing lecturer at Burnley College in 1986. Prior to this Karen worked as a computer programmer and then a Systems Analyst at The Prestige Group PLC, British Aerospace and at Leyland DAF.

Member of the Finance Committee

Paul Henderson currently resides as the Director of Education Frameworks at International Building Contractor ISG. This followed previous roles including that of Client Project Manager responsible for the new build at Burnley College. A former GNVQ Building Studies student at Burnley College Sixth Form Centre, Paul progressed and graduated from the University of Central Lancashire with a BSc Hons in Building Surveying before completing a Master’s Degree in Business Administration.

Chair of the Audit Committee, Member of Human Resources, Remuneration and Search & Governance Committees

After leaving Burnley Grammar School, Jim Sutcliffe joined Burnley Building Society as a computer specialist and Audit Manager. He then moved to the National and Provincial Building Society in Bradford as a mergers and acquisitions planner and integration manager. He developed his own management consultancy business in 1997 before recently retiring.

Jim was appointed a Governor of Burnley College in 1998, a decision he states influenced by the high quality of education his sons received at Burnley College. He is now Chair of the Audit Committee and a member of the Human Resources Committee and Search and Governance Committee.

Chair of the Finance Committee and Member of the Search & Governance Committee

Retired Director of Kaman Aerospace Group, with headquarters in Connecticut, USA, Richard Thorley became a Burnley College Governor in 1993 whilst he was Managing Director at Smiths Aerospace. He is currently Chair of the Finance Committee.

A Chartered Management accountant Richard also holds a degree in Production Engineering and Management from Loughborough University.

Chair of the Human Resources Committee and Member of the Remuneration Committee

Philip Turner recently retired from being Senior Partner at Waddington and Son Solicitors. He had spent over 24 years at the firm after joining on a traineeship and continues to work for them as a Senior Consultant. Philip specialises in Criminal Law.

Philip has been a Burnley College Governor since 1993.

Chair of the Curriculum & Standards Committee, Vice Chair of Human Resources Committee and Member of Audit and Search & Governance Committees

Paul Ragnall joined the College’s Governing Board in March 2011. Paul works at the National Pensions Service and has held a number of roles over the past 30 years including benefit delivery, Human Resources, Health and Safety and the Job Centre Plus. Until recently, Paul was the Deputy Manager of the Department for Work and Pensions and has now taken up a national role in relation to health and safety and elements of the human resources function.

Vice Chair of the Finance Committee

Guy Thomas left aerospace manufacturing group Kaman UK in May 2014 after six years of managing three subsidiary businesses within the organisation, first as Group Finance Director and then taking a new role as Group Managing Director in January 2010. He is now a self employed consultant providing specialist services support to small and midsized corporates.

Guy is a qualified accountant and has many years experience in this role gained at Earnest & Young and Brockhouse Holdings where he was Group Finance Director.

Member of the Curriculum & Standards Committee

Following a career in social work and the probation service, Aidan Worsley moved to the University sector, firstly at the University of Chester and then the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) where he holds the position of Executive Dean leading the University in business, law and applied social studies.

Aidan enjoys a national reputation as a published research author in social work and is a former president of the Association of Professors of Social Work.


Member of the Curriculum & Standards Committee

Louise Robinson commenced her career with Hurel Dubois 21 years ago, worked in Supply Chain for 5 years and is currently Programmes Director of Safran Nacelles Limited.  Previously Louise worked for Rolls Royce as Commercial Manager and Bizjets as Senior Programme Manager. 


Member of the Audit Committee

Richard Robinson joined the College’s Governing Board in October 2017, joining  the College's Audit Committee. Richard is a Director at a local firm of accountants McMahon Leggate and of a company called FEEsource Ltd, a management consultancy service. He is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW).


Member of the Curriculum & Standards Committee

Gillian was formerly the Managing Director of Taylor Patterson, a financial services group based in Lancashire, having successfully completed a management buy out in 2006. Her main responsibilities were the future strategy of the business and the development of key business relationships.

Gillian is a Chartered Accountant and was President of ICAEW Lancashire & South Lakeland in 2016/17 and is currently Entrepreneur in Residence at Lancaster University.


Clerk to Governors - Simone Lomas: s.lomas@burnley.ac.uk


Staff Governors




Humera Khan : Member of the Curriculum & Standards Committee 

Humera Khan has a background in Mathematics, and has worked at the College for the last ten years, initially as a Maths Lecturer within the Division of A Levels and her current role is now as Head Of Maths and English. Previously, Humera worked in the private and public sector as a data and project analyst.


Keeley Seamans : Member of the Curriculum & Standards Committee 

Keeley Seamans has worked at Burnley College for 12 years and is currently the Events and Active Learning Zone Team Leader, she is responsible for the planning and coordination of all student, external and community events within Burnley College. She also takes an active role in staff development across the College, coordinating staff training and development initiatives.


Student Governors


Adam Smith: Member of the Curriculum & Standards Committee 

Adam came to Burnley College from Norden High School where he held the prestigious role of Head Boy. He studies A Level Law, Politics and English Language. He has a keen interest in Law and is intending to progress on to read law at university in order to realise his ambition of building a career in Corporate Law. Adam loves taking part in political debates and was part of a team that interviewed two local MPs on the issue of Brexit, creating a short film for the Our Place In Europe competition which was highly commended. Adam also enjoys playing the guitar in his time away from studying and politics.


Chloe Bond: Member of the Curriculum & Standards Committee 

Chloe came to Burnley College from Colne Primet Academy and is studying A Levels in Dance, History, Drama and English Language and Literature. Chloe is intending to read English at university as she wishes to pursue a career in writing or teaching. Chloe has completed her Bronze and Silver Duke of Edinburgh Awards, she is an avid reader and spends most of her spare time either teaching Dance or learning Dance which she loves. Alongside all of this Chloe is also completing an Extended Project examining the representation of minority groups in theatre where she is using case studies to build her project.