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New headteacher announced at Barnard Castle School

David Cresswell
David Cresswell

A leading independent school has revealed its next headmaster, the 11th in its 140-year history.

David Cresswell returns to the fold at Barnard Castle School after three years away working at the prestigious 1,500-pupil Whitgift School, in Croydon, London, where he is senior deputy head, responsible for day-to-day operations.

The 38-year-old served as Barnard Castle School’s deputy head in charge of sixth form from 2017-2020.

The governing body has appointed him to succeed Tony Jackson from September 2024.

Darlington and Stockton Times: David Cresswell
Darlington and Stockton Times: David Cresswell

Before joining Barnard Castle School, David taught modern languages and theatre studies at Cranleigh School, before moving to Radley College to take up the positions of head of German and deputy housemaster.

He is a graduate of modern languages from Oxford University, where he captained the hockey team.

A keen theatregoer and former professional hockey player in Germany and England, Mr Cresswell will return North with his wife, Aynsley, who is a qualified GP, and their two young children, Olivia and Alexander.

Mr Jackson is to pursue a new career outside of education but will remain an active member of the school community as a parent, with his children, Annabel, Georgina and William, continuing their educations at the school, where his wife, Dawn, teaches geography.

Chair of governors Catherine Sunley said: “It is with great excitement that we announce the appointment of Mr Cresswell as our next headmaster. He is an experienced and talented educator with exceptional qualities who not only shares our vision for Barney, but whose appointment will undoubtedly shape the future of the school, building on the remarkable tenure and foundations laid over the past seven years by Mr Jackson.

“Many members of our community will already have an association with and remember David from when he served as a very successful deputy head, responsible for our thriving sixth form.”

Mr Cresswell said: “I am delighted to have been appointed as the next headmaster at Barney, a school that is close to my heart and a community of which I am proud to be part. I am incredibly excited about the opportunity to lead this wonderful school to continued success, building upon its already strong foundation, where community is at the heart of everything it does.”