Claire Davies, currently Headteacher at St Matthias CE Primary Academy in Malvern and Executive Headteacher of Elmley Castle CE First School, has been appointed as the new CEO of the Diocese of Worcester Multi-Academy Trust (DoWMAT). The DoWMAT provides a route to becoming an Academy for any school across Worcestershire and Dudley wanting to join a trust with clear Christian values and vision. There are currently eight primary schools in the DoWMAT with a number of others in the pipeline to join.

Claire will take over from Interim CEO, Karen Surrall, who has been responsible for the initial set up of the DoWMAT; turning the diocesan vision into a robust reality. Claire will now look to grow and develop the offer for schools, ensuring that those who are part of the Trust continue to be supported effectively and standards across the schools continue to improve.

Claire said:

“Karen has done an amazing job in establishing the DoWMAT and I’m looking forward to working alongside her for my first few months as I start to build strong professional relationships with each of the schools. From January, I will take on the role full time, co-ordinating the Trust and building capacity within the DoWMAT to enable each of the schools to flourish. I am very excited about working with a group of extremely committed and dedicated headteachers, their staff teams and the local governing bodies of each academy.”

Claire brings her experience of working as Headteacher of three very different church schools. She has a background in school development and effectiveness; always looking for ways to improve the schools in which she has worked so that children have the best possible chance to achieve of their best. She has also looked after school budgets; working with Academy Boards to keep schools financially viable and sustainable.

She said: 

“This post will be a new challenge for me and I am looking forward to the opportunity to work with schools from a different perspective. The Diocese is committed to creating and sustaining a family of academies working collaboratively to achieve excellent outcomes for children. This is very reassuring for our headteachers who face many challenges in today’s educational landscape and I am pleased and excited to be part of such a worthwhile venture.”

Claire joins the DoWMAT part time in September, gradually increasing her hours over the first three months. The DoWMAT is still relatively new with the first schools joining last February. Claire will help to develop the structures of the Trust, providing strategic leadership and direction as well as support for the schools involved. She will also work closely with the Diocesan Education Team to ensure that church schools within the Diocese of Worcester continue to be both challenged and supported at a time of significant change within the education landscape. 


The Diocese of Worcester is one of 42 dioceses in the Church of England. It covers an area of 671 square miles and includes parishes in the County of Worcestershire, the Metropolitan Borough of Dudley, and a few parishes in northern Gloucestershire, south east Wolverhampton and Sandwell.

From: Sam Setchell, Press Officer for the Diocese of Worcester and the Bishop of Worcester.

Tel: 01905 20537 Mobile: 07852 302516