Members are custodians of the Trust and are appointed on the basis of experience and community contribution; they take a hands-off role in the management of Kingfisher Learning Trust yet take an active interest in the life of the schools. In consequence of any shortfall in the performance of the Trustees, members are ideally placed to intervene and rectify, with responsibility for the appointment of a number of Trustees.

The Members sign a Membership Agreement to uphold the ethos of the Trust. They have access to the Trust schools and meet formally at the Annual General Meeting (AGM), where they meet with the Trustees and Executive Team. They make informational visits to the schools and read and assimilate minutes of Trust Board Meetings.

In simple terms, the Members “own” the Academy Trust. They have a number of statutory rights, including the right to remove Trustees, the right to amend the Articles and the right to receive the annual accounts. They also have the right to appoint up to five Trustees under the Articles.

Helen Crabtree Chair of Trust Board

Helen has been a School Governor in Oldham since 1992, initially as a Parent Governor at Foxdenton Special School and then as a Community Governor at Kingfisher Special School. In 2008 she became the Vice Chair of Governors, with a special interest in pupil progress and in this capacity chaired the school’s Educational Excellence Committee. She took on the role of Chair of Trustees at Kingfisher Learning Trust in September 2016.

Helen lives in Bury and is married with one daughter. Prior to retirement in 2008 she was a lecturer in the Business School at Salford University for 17 years, teaching Quality Management and Organisational Behaviour.

Kay Knox Member

Kay was an Oldham Borough Councillor for 23 years and was involved in education for all of them. She acquired many skills during that time that are now helping Kay in her role as a Member of Kingfisher Learning Trust.

Kay has been a School Governor for over 30 years and she is currently Chair of Governors at Littlemoor Primary School.

In 2005/06 Kay was proud and honoured to be the Mayor of Oldham.

Now retired, Kay’s main interests are: spending more time with her family and friends; supporting several charities and helping to run a “Memory Café” for people with dementia.  Kay’s 3 grandchildren give her the most pleasure and fun times.

Tariq Amin Member

Tariq’s family was one of the very first Asian families to settle in Oldham in 1962 and they have since made Oldham their home.   He is married with three grown-up professional children.

Tariq took over running the family business, a UK recognised poultry firm in 1980.  Over the years he has held several positions within Oldham such as: a Director of Chamber of Commerce in Oldham; Chairman of the Asian Business Association; Director of the Asian Forum of NWBD Agency; Governor of Hathershaw School (which he attended) and Director of Oldham Partnership Board to name but a few.

Tariq has been involved with fundraising both past and present and in particular, enjoyed fundraising and working for MR SCANNER for Oldham Hospital and MAHDLO.

Tariq is an outdoor person and enjoys walking and driving through the countryside and photography, especially in the Lakes.  He enjoys sports both playing and keeping fit and enjoys dining and meeting people from all walks of life.

Mike Jones Member

Mike was headteacher of an outstanding primary school in Oldham for 15 years until his retirement in 2018. Prior to that he had been a deputy headteacher for 6 years, a Special Needs Local Authority Teacher in mainstream education and a mainscale teacher. He is deeply committed to the principles that underpin coaching for excellence and the capacity to improve. He has successfully completed the Level 7 Executive Coaching Award and he was instrumental in supporting the coaching and mentoring of headteachers in Oldham for 12 years. He also holds the NPQH and he received a first-class honours degree in Education from Lancaster University in 1991.

He continued to be employed part-time by Oldham LA as a School Improvement Partner until 2021.

Prior to his education career Mike was in the Merchant Navy where he studied nautical science and was employed as a navigation officer. He was fortunate to travel the world extensively, in a professional context, as a young man and this experience shaped many of the values he carried into the rest of his working life.

He is married and has three adult children. He loves the outdoor life and seeks opportunities to hike and observe the natural world. He has a passion for music, reading and his family.

He wants to remain involved in education and regards it is a privilege to be part of the Kingfisher Learning Trust.

Frank Rothwell Member

Frank Rothwell established his business, Manchester Cabins in1979. The business originally manufactured affordable and cheerful portable construction site cabins but, in the last 20 years, the direction of the business has changed to a hire company which manufactures its own cabins, including the manufacture and hire the national market leading Bunkabin units (portable sleeping accommodation units).  Manchester Cabins employs over 50 people in our Oldham factory and depot and turns over nearly £20m a year.

Frank is now the chairman of Oldham Athletic as the Rothwell family have taken full ownership of the club.

Outside of business, Frank made the first Land Rover to be powered by steam and coal in his garage, and at the age of 70, became the oldest person to row a boat solo across the Atlantic Ocean – raising £1.1m for Alzheimer’s Research UK.

Over the years, Frank has supported many local organisations and, in 2020, donated £30,000 to Action Together to help the charity continue its vital work supporting the Oldham community throughout the pandemic and a substantial amount to help fund the new hydrotherapy pool at Kingfisher Special School.

Frank was awarded Freeman of the Borough in 2021 for his outstanding contributions to Oldham, in addition to his inspiring charity work.

On receiving his honour, Frank said: “Becoming a Freeman of the Borough has been the greatest achievement of my life and I am overjoyed to have received this local recognition.”


Tracy Brennand Member

Tracy has worked in Local Government for 40 years undertaking a wide range of roles across services before developing a long career in Human Resources.    Tracy holds the Director of HR role at Tameside Council and has core responsibility for a range of functions including Workforce, Transformation and Improvement, Policy, Performance and Communications.   Tracy over the years has been involved in a range of changes within the Education sector, supporting school improvement and academisation changes.

Tracy works with workforce colleagues across Greater Manchester and is on the board for the Good Employment Charter aimed to ensure that residents of the area are able to work within organisations that truly value and reward their workforce.

Until recently Tracy was the vice chair of Governors at an Oldham secondary school and is keen to continue to support educational outcomes for children and is keen to share her knowledge and skills in her Member role at Kingfisher Learning Trust.

Tracy has two grown up daughters and a grandchild who will start school in September 2024.