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Manchester High School for Girls


Elizabeth Spence BA (Chair)

Elizabeth Spence’s link to Manchester High School for Girls dates back to 1908, when her grandmother started as a pupil at the School. Her mother was also a pupil, as was Elizabeth and her daughter, Esther, the fourth generation, who left in 2004.

After studying English at Leeds University, Elizabeth took up a career in teaching and worked in several challenging state schools before becoming the Principal of the Girls’ Division at The King’s School in Macclesfield. She was delighted to be asked to be a governor of Manchester High School for Girls in 2006, as her mother had been before her. She succeeded Christine Walker as Chair in December 2014.

To contact Elizabeth, or one of our governors, please contact the Clerk to the Governors on

Alternatively, Elizabeth can be contacted via the School's postal address.


Dr Amar Ahmed

Born and raised in Manchester, Dr Ahmed attended William Hulmes Grammar School then Guys and St Thomas’ Medical School. He returned to the North West and worked in various South Manchester hospitals training to be a GP. He has been a partner at Wilmslow Health Centre since 2000.

Dr Ahmed joined the governing body in 2013 and sits on the Academic Development Committee.

Andrew Bland FCA FABRP

An alumnus of Manchester Grammar School, Andrew obtained a degree in Accounting and Finance and qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 1986 at a small local firm. He moved to the Corporate Recovery and Insolvency department at Ernst & Young's Manchester office. In 1999, he successfully completed the Joint Insolvency Examinations and became a Licensed Insolvency Practitioner thereafter.

Following this, Andrew went into industry, concentrating on companies listed on the Alternative Investment Market, initially at a vehicle telematics company and latterly at a market leading personal insolvency business where he became the Group Operations and Finance Director. In 2004, Andrew returned to public practice and acquired a significant interest in a local accountancy practice and at the same time establishing an Insolvency Practice. In 2016, he acquired a further local accounting practice to build on the existing portfolio.

Andrew has acted as a finance trustee for a Manchester and London based charity established to assist people with learning disabilities to lead independent and fulfilling lives.

Kate Dickson

A former MHSG student (class of 1985), Kate joined the Governing body formally in December 2018, with an expectation of chairing the Estates Committee in due course. 

An Architect by training, Kate heads Creative Heritage Consultants Ltd, a multi-disciplinary practice that provides advisory services to those with responsibilities for historic buildings, based in Buxton. She gained particular experience in delivering a number of major projects as the Director of Heritage Works Building Preservation Trust, including the nationally significant regeneration of Murrays’ Mills in Ancoats, Manchester. 

She is a Trustee of the Architectural Heritage Fund and a consultant mentor for the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Stephanie Klass MA

Stephanie Klass has been a member of the governing body since 2004. She started in the Preparatory Department at Manchester High in 1953 and left the Sixth Form in 1967.

After reading Jurisprudence at Somerville College, Oxford between 1967 and 1970, she joined Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP, solicitors to the Bank of England, as their only (at that time) female solicitor.  She has been a partner in Berg Legal and Hempsons, and consultant to Hill Dickinson and Freeth Cartwright.

In her role as governor, she is a member of the Academic Committee and Chair of the Personnel Committee. Stephanie is also Vice-Chair of Governors.

Merlyn Lowther BSc MSc MA

Merlyn has been a member of the governing body since 2015 and is now Honorary Treasurer, Vice Chair of Governors and Chair of the Finance Committee. She  has a Mathematics degree from Manchester University, an MBA from the London Business School and an MA from the Central School of Speech and Drama.

Her executive career was spent with the Bank of England, where she was appointed the first female Chief Cashier in 1999. In 2004 she gave up her executive career to pursue a broader range of interests, holding many non-executive directorships with large companies.

Sue Beales BA PGCert AMBDA MA

Sue studied English at the University of Lancaster and went on to teach at GCSE and A Level. She then became a Special Educational Needs Coordinator, completing a Masters in Specific Learning Difficulties at Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU).

Sue retired from teaching seven years ago but has been an Associate Lecturer in SpLD at MMU, supporting students in their post graduate studies.

Sue, who became a governor in 2009, enjoys her role as she finds it rewarding to still be involved in education. She is Chair of the Academic Development Committee.

Lady Rachel Cooper OBE PhD

Rachel Cooper grew up in the Midlands; she loved Art at school and went on to gain a first class honours degree in Graphic Design. 

Now Distinguished Professor of Design Management and Policy at the University of Lancaster, Rachel is Chair of Lancaster Institute for the Contemporary Arts and undertakes research in design.

She is a non-executive director of The Future Cities Catapult company and has undertaken several advisory roles to a number of universities, companies and Government departments.

She became a governor in 2002 and is a member of both the Academic Development and Personnel Committees.

Marie Grant Cert Ed

Marie Grant, former Headmistress of Wilmslow Preparatory School, is an educationalist, deeply committed to independent education.

Marie became a governor in 2002, and sits on the Academic Development and Personnel Committees.  She is one of two governor representatives on the Health and Safety Committee and is the Staff Liaison Governor. 

Marie thoroughly enjoys her involvement with the School and its many activities, taking a special interest in the Prep School.

Vicky Kloss BA

Vicky was born and raised in Greater Manchester and later Glossop, Derbyshire and attended Manchester High School for Girls from 1981-1989. She was a student on a part bursary during her time at the school and she has been passionate supporter of the Bursary campaign in recent years and up to the present day. During her final year at Manchester High she was a member of the Head Girl team (one of four deputies).

On leaving MHSG, she attended Queens College, Cambridge University where she graduated with a BA (Hons) degree in Modern and Medieval Languages (French and Latin). From Cambridge, she fulfilled her vocation to join the Police Service, becoming a Detective in the Metropolitan Police, London (1993-2001).

Following her relocation to Manchester for family reasons, she embarked upon a new career in Public Relations and Communications, becoming the Press Officer at Manchester City Football club, of which she is a lifelong fan. She has continued her career path at the Club over the past 16 years, becoming Director of Communications and, following the expansion and creation of a number of sister football clubs around the world, now holds the position of Chief Communications Officer of City Football Group. She is responsible for all communications - External, Internal, Commercial, Media and Public Affairs - for the global organisation which now includes six football clubs in North and South America, Europe and Australasia. She is also a member of the organisation's Executive Leadership Team.

Professor Robert Munn DSc

Bob Munn graduated from Bristol University with a BSc and a PhD in Chemistry. He was awarded the degree of DSc by the Victoria University of Manchester, later becoming a Reader and then Professor of Chemical Physics at UMIST. He served three periods as Head of Department, was Vice-Principal for Finance, and became Dean of UMIST, responsible for the student experience. 

Bob joined the governing body in 2006 and sits on both on the Academic Development and Personnel committees.

Harry Yeung MBE

Award-winning chef, Harry Yeung, began his culinary apprenticeship in the kitchens of Hong Kong, and joined the family team who opened the world-famous Yang Sing restaurant in 1977.

Harry became a governor in 2011 and sits on the Academic Development Committee. He has a passion for Manchester United. 

Christopher Saunders OBE Chartered FCSI

After gaining an MA in Modern History at Wadham College, Oxford, Christopher joined Barclays Bank and subsequently established an Asset Management company which was quoted on the AIM section of the London Stock Exchange.  After the sale of that firm, he set up the new firm of S&T Asset Management LLP.

He served as Treasurer and then Chairman of the East Midlands region of the Conservative Party, covering 48 constituencies, and served on the Party’s National Executive.  Christopher is Chairman of two charities; the Manchester High School for Girls Charitable Trust and the John Slater Foundation.  He is also a director of a quarrying company in Somerset.

Laura Earnshaw BSc

After leaving MHSG in 1998, Laura went on to achieve a first class degree in Business from Kings College London.

After graduating, she joined Accenture and worked as a Management Consultant for several years in the U.K. and Canada. She then took her career into Industry where she was a Global Head of HR in several Global companies, her specialisms included Talent Management and Strategic Workforce Planning a career that took her around the world.

In 2016, Laura decided to pursue a passion to positively impact the mental wellbeing of children in the U.K and launched; an innovative curriculum for primary schools to help them build resilient, balanced and happy minds.

She remains hugely grateful for her bursary place at MHSG and for all that the school have her done for her. She became a Governor in 2017 and is proud to serve on the Academic and Personnel committees.