Past students visit St Cuthbert's

15 October 2015

Today, we welcomed past students to St Cuthbert’s.  All attended St Cuthbert's from 1966-1971. They meet up regularly every year around the country, but this year as they have celebrated their 60th birthdays they wanted to make it a special occasion by visiting St Cuthbert's again.


They spent the morning talking to year 9 students about their time at the school and the careers they pursued once leaving us.  At break time they spent time talking to teachers in the staff room about how influential teachers had been in shaping their lives and reminiscing about former teachers.  After break they spent time with the Head Boy and Girl and the rest of the Senior Team learning about their hopes and aspirations for the future as well as enjoying a tour of the school facilities.  They took time to meet our newest members of the St Cuthbert’s community – our year 7 students - in their maths lessons. 


Here are the messages they wanted to pass on to our students:

“Your relationships with your teachers are critical to a good education on which to base your futures lives.  Your teachers provide the inspiration and tools you need to take advantage of opportunities that come by our way in the future and your teachers are there to help you”

Phil, Sue and David


Mrs Twist, Head of School said “We are proud of our supportive community of students, staff, governors, parents and friends of the school. We are all ‘Cuthies Kids’!  Of course, we particularly value our former students. If you are a ‘Cuthies Kid’, please sign up to our new 'Cuthies' alumni group. As it grows the group will be a great way of keeping in touch with the school (and former teachers), rekindling old friendships, reminiscing about your rime at the school with all the online photos, and maybe even visiting school just as our guests did today.  Eventually you’ll be able to advertise your services to your fellow alumni”.


If you would like to get in touch with the school about anything 'alumni' or would like to feature on our new website, please contact the PA to the Head of School, Mrs Cath Geden. We always love to hear from Cuthies Kids.


 Past students visit to St Cuthbert's


The photograph features Mrs Catherine Twist, Mr David Turley and Mr Phil Martlew (former students), Amy Lyon, Millie Brignall, Lewis Martin, Jack McConville, (Senior Team members)
Mrs Sue Parkington (former student), Mr Mike Talbot, Mrs Julie Pennington (current staff), Beth Gerrard and Callum Kelly (Head Girl & Head Boy - seated).


Unfortunately Ann was unable to join her fellow former students at school today, but she will be meeting up with them tonight and sends her best wishes to all staff and students.

Read our visitors’ stories below:



Philip Martlew


After leaving St Cuthbert's in 1971 with GCE results Phil went to West Park Grammar School in St Helens to study for his A Levels.  In 1973 he went on to Manchester University where he obtained a degree in Mathematics.  In 1977 he joined a Petrochemical Construction company in London where he qualified as a Programmer.  He later became a senior IT analyst.  In 1980 he then went to the U.S. to work for an IT software engineering company as their Head of Operations in Washington & Texas.  Phil returned to the UK in 1983 and joined Price Waterhouse Coopers (PWc) as a Management Consultant based out of London.  He worked primarily in the UK but also overseas including Turkey.  Then in 1988, Phil joined TSB in (TSB later became part of Lloyds Bank) as an IT Strategy Consultant. He worked there until he retired in 2012. During his tenure with Lloyds he held many senior positions across the UK including Head of Physical & IT Security and also Director of IT for the Retail Marketing Division.  Since he retired he has been studying for a degree in history from the Open University.  Furthermore, he is a governor of the NHS South Manchester Trust, and is also a Director of St George's Hall in Liverpool.  Phil is married and lives on the Wirral.  In his spare time he enjoys running and Astronomy as his hobbies.


Sue Parkington (nee Dye)


After leaving St Cuthbert's in 1971 with GCE and CSE results, Sue continued her education at St Helens College before commencing work in Local Government, a career spanning 40 years.


Her first role as Secretary led to promotion to various positions as Personal Assistant to several Chief Officers at St Helens Council.  Sue then became involved in Project Administration and Financial Management.  Her move to Wigan Council included her role working closely with the Chief Executive of Wigan and Leigh Housing as his Executive Support Officer.


Running alongside her Local Government employment, Sue started a part-time business in the Lake District managing holiday properties.


Sue is now enjoying an active retirement, and continues to own and manage a small portfolio of properties.  Sue has even taken up cycling and jogging - and recently took part in a 10K run.


Ann Riley (nee Cliffe)


After leaving St Cuthberts, Ann attended Newton Le Willows COF where she undertook further GCE's.


Ann then trained as an SRN at Whiston Hospital.


Ann went on to undertake a degree as a Specialist Nurse in Primary Care and then an MSc in Clinical Nursing.  Ann now works in General Practice as Nurse Clinician.  Nurse Clinicians work in a similar way to GP's, not knowing what will present, using skills in history taking examination and diagnostics to assess patients and prescribing where necessary, referring for further investigations including blood tests, x-rays, scans.  She refers to Consultant colleagues for expert advice/care of patients for a whole spectrum of problems.  She takes a share of home visits alongside her GP colleagues and is Clinical Lead for 6 Intermediate Care Beds that are allocated to CCG practices, within a local Nursing Home. These beds are used by what’s known as rapid response team to allow patients early discharge from hospital or to prevent patients going into hospital.


Ann is married with 3 children, has 2 grandchildren from her eldest son and a new grandchild expected any day from her Daughter who is her middle child.  Ann has 2 Cocker Spaniel dogs that she enjoys spending time with and enjoys long walks in the country.  She loves spending time with family and friends, holidaying in the UK and abroad.


Ann feels that it’s been wonderful to maintain friends from St Cuthbert’s and meets regularly with Sue, Phil and David.


David Turley


On completing his GCE’s at St Cuthbert’s in 1971, David went to West Park Grammar School where he obtained 5 A Levels. David’s dream was to become a car designer so on completing his A Levels he joined General Motors as a graduate engineering apprentice. During the first year he undertook basic training in manufacturing, production engineering, quality control, reliability engineering and working on the production lines building cars vans and trucks. During the next 3 years he went to Imperial College London to study Mechanical Engineering where he obtained his first degree. During the following 3 years he worked in the product design and engineering department on various assignments, developing and testing new vehicles whilst in the evenings, undertaking a diploma in management science, accounting and finance. He was also successful in winning a place in the General Motors Fellowship scheme. However in 1981 David left General Motors to take up a position as a project engineer in a fluid engineering consultancy company where he progressed quickly to become a chartered engineer and also, in his spare time, he successfully completed an MSc in Fluid Engineering. In1988 he was invited to join the board of directors of his company. In 2003, David successfully led a management buy-out of his business. This business was sold in 2008 whilst David continued to work for the company for a further 5 years as executive chairman.


David continues to pursue his interest in technology and product development. He is currently chairman of a renewable energy company and in his spare time he owns a pub and manages a rock band. David is married to Janet (whom he met at Imperial College London whilst playing pin ball) and has 3 grown up children and 3 grandchildren.