Our people

Meet the team at Farnham College

Our college comprises of individuals from a wide range of personal and professional backgrounds, who are highly committed to the vision and mission of Activate Learning; we want to transform lives through learning. We want to go beyond giving you great qualifications. Our focus is on building the mindset, attributes and skills that are most relevant for the ever-changing workplace, and developing you personally so you open up future career and life possibilities you cannot yet imagine.

College can be an overwhelming place at first and the best way to acclimate to a big change is familiarity. Come to one of our Open Events to chat to our team if you can, and read the profiles below to get comfortable with who we are and what you can expect from our learning programmes.

A selection of our support team and tutors

Neil Brookes Head of Campus

I am the Head of Campus at Farnham College. Following graduation from my degree, I went straight into teacher training before gaining a position teaching English. Having taught GCSE, A Level and Functional Skills in a range of settings, I have a great passion for the subject. 

Alongside teaching roles, I have worked as a Chief Examiner for English leading on the design, marking and awarding of English assessment materials nationally as well as undertaking work for universities as an External Examiner. 

Farnham is a unique college with a great community feel. I am hugely proud to be working alongside some outstanding subject specialists who cannot wait to share the passion for their subject with you. 

James Jagger Deputy Head of Campus

I’m the Deputy Head of Campus and Faculty Manager at Farnham College.

I’m also a highly-experienced Geography teacher who is passionate about the subject and in helping students gain their full potential in Geography.

I’ve been delivering outstanding Geography lessons for over 20 years and bring the subject to life with my infectious enthusiasm and humour.

My ethos is to make Geography come alive through the use of contemporary case studies and Geography in the news stories. I’m a master at getting the best out of my students in supporting them to achieve their very best in Geography.


Andrew Rowley Photography

As a teacher at Farnham College, I bring 30 years of experience as a practising professional within a range of disciplines in the field of art and design.  

My focus over the last 12 years has been to establish a photography department that has produced consistently high grades above the national average, allowing student progression into a range of higher education courses and employment. 

I have also been responsible for the teaching of three-dimensional design in a number of disciplines including ceramics and architecture. I am currently delivering A level three- dimensional design Architecture at advanced level, where there is a strong emphasis on practical making and drawing skills alongside computer-aided design.   

My studies at both WSACD Farnham and The Royal College of Art London have given me the foundations required to develop my own practice and apply this knowledge to teaching at Farnham CollegeContacts made at the RCA and WSCAD have proved invaluable in providing links to workshops activities, studio visits and visiting speakers, all to the benefit of our students. 

Julian Thompson Fine Art

I am a locally based teacher and artist who was born in Essex and went to school with the comedian Lee Evans. 

I trained in fine art painting at Reading University and Goldsmiths College, London and was taught by the celebrated artists Patrick Heron and Mali Morris.  

In the late 1980s I re-located to the Isle of Wight in order to paint the exotic and temperate climate, which inspired an energetic, colourful and vibrant phase in my painting. I taught art and graphics at Ryde High School.   

Since this time I have taught at Farnham College and had a successful career . As Head of Art, I taught the Hollywood actor Jim Sturgess to develop as an artist, and continue to inspire young students to reach their artistic potential. I believe in empowering students to learn by offering a programme that instils confidence and self-belief. I offer a wide range of studio practice across life drawing, printmaking, graphics and illustration, contemporary and traditional painting styles that cater for the needs of individual students and inspire a life-long interest in the subject. My approach is characterised by highly structured courses with a clear learning methodology that promotes inclusivity to support a range of abilities. This is designed to empower the learner to take risks and encourages them to connect on a personal level with their own practice informed by sound insight and knowledge from others’ work. This is based upon a deep understanding of art and design practice and how it can uniquely transform a learner’s understanding and awareness of the world around them. Many of my students have subsequently progressed to successful employment in art and design. At Farnham I teach A level Fine Art, A level Graphic Design and UAL Applied General Extended Diploma in Art and Design.  The results are significantly higher then sector averages and student work is widely celebrated both in the college and local community. 

I have extensive industrial experience having worked as a freelance artist / graphic designer and being a musician in a local Pink Floyd tribute band which has toured across the country and abroad 

Klaer Brooker Business

My professional journey began in hospitality, I remember being fascinated how businesses became successful and what made the difference. I enjoyed understanding how each part of the business worked from costs and margins through to marketing and ultimately the service delivered by its people. It is then I decided to work in an area of the business that focused on the people, which started my path into Human Resources. 

I spent most of my career in global business; recruitment, talent acquisition and employer branding, moving to retail and sales operations, leading HR teams and ultimately to HR transformation, designing and implementing global business change initiatives.  I started my journey into teaching by running the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) course and from there moved into teaching business.    

Throughout my career, I have always kept people at the heart of what I do, not only from a business perspective but from the individual. I have always been passionate about supporting and developing individuals to reach their ambitions. Teaching business brings all of this together, with my blend of people expertise and business experience I am able to support students to develop themselves, and their passion for business. 

Sarah Toone Biology and Applied Science

After growing up in Lincolnshire and completing my GCSE exams, I emigrated to Queensland, Australia with my family in the early 1990’s.  Whilst there, I finished school and headed off to university to study a Bachelor of Science and Post Graduate Diploma in Natural Resources and Wildlife Management.  I then worked at a seed breeding company for a couple of years before deciding to pursue a more fulfilling career in teaching.  My first teaching post was in the Queensland outback where I stayed for five years and had many fantastic experiences, including rounding up cattle from a helicopter. 


I then returned to the UK, teaching Science in a Surrey secondary school, followed by a role as Head of Biology at an independent school in West Sussex, where I still live with my husband and a small menagerie of animals. It was there that I discovered a passion for sixth form teachingBeing able to make a difference at this unique and crucial point in a student’s education is truly rewarding.  This led me to Farnham College, where I am now in my fifth year, teaching A Level Biology and BTEC Applied Science.  One of the things I love most about Farnham is our small size.  You can really get to know your students well and support them to achieve their goals. 

Steven Bell Performing Arts, Music Technology and Media Studies

I am a teacher of Performing Arts, Music Technology and Media Studies at Farnham College, I joined in 2013 after completing my teacher training. I was previously a student at Farnham College before reading Drama at The University of Hull. I have worked as a lighting and sound technician, a set, lighting and sound designer, and stage manager. I have worked with live bands, comedians, circus performers, puppeteers, theatre makers, TV writers and directors, and recording artists. I use my industry experience to inform my teaching of vocational subjects.  

My approach to teaching is one of exploration and creating a safe space to take risks, make mistakes and to learn from those experiences rather than fearing them.   

Sue Martin Psychology and Applied Science

I teach Applied BTEC and A level Psychology at Farnham College and have been a teacher here since 2008. I have 5 children, 9 grandchildren and 2 great grandchildren. After leaving School at 15 without any formal qualification I initially focused on my role as a mother. As my children began to grow up I decided I wanted to re-enter education. At first I trained as a therapist and spent 10 years in this role. However, in 1998 I decided I wanted to further my education, firstly completing an access course before obtaining a 2:1 BSc honours degree in Psychology from the university of Portsmouth. I then went on to complete a PGCE teaching qualification and have been teaching ever since. I find my role as a teacher very rewarding and hope to be teaching for many years to come.  

Zoe Howells Law

I studied Law at A Level and at University and thereafter studied the Post-Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice (LPC) at Guildford College of Law.  I qualified as a solicitor in 2002 and spent 10 years working within a medium-sized high street firm as a civil litigation specialist.  I have extensive experience of employment, personal injury and negligence disputes. I undertook my teacher training qualification in 2011.  I have been teaching Law since September 2011 and have taught on various courses including CILEX (adult learners who wish to become Legal Executives), BTEC, AS and A Level.  I have undertaken exam marking for AQA as an examiner which means I have a real insight into what the examiner is looking for in terms of student responsesMy passion and enthusiasm for the subject has translated into a proven track record when it comes to results, which consistently exceed national averages. I enjoy sport and current affairs so it’s not quite ‘all about Law’ (but it nearly is!!!).