Mr Nick Armitage
I can remember leaving my senior school and thinking ‘Who on earth would want to be a teacher, given the way we have treated them?’ Less than a year later, having worked at a Boys’ Prep School in South Africa as part of a GAP year pre-University, I had changed my mind dramatically, having had the most wonderful time. Following a degree in Art History at UEA and 5 years working in the Advertising industry in London, it took my wife’s questioning to nudge me to make the jump into teaching, from which I have never looked back.
Our first year of married life was spent in Cambridge, where I studied for my PGCE, while my wife, Polly, studied for a PHD in Early Music. I then worked at three lovely co-ed prep schools, teaching children aged 7-13, was head of department, a teacher of most subjects and latterly focusing on Maths, as well as a range of sports, activities and running the boarding house at Beaudesert with my wife. As Deputy Head of St Hugh’s for 6 years, I liaised with parents and senior schools over the next steps for the pupils, led the pastoral team and was a member of the academic team. I jumped at the chance to lead Rupert House in the next exciting chapter of its journey, and I realise just how fortunate I am to work with such passionate and caring colleagues, every single one of whom is focused on inspiring the children to make the most of the opportunities they are presented with.
Away from school, we enjoy being in or on the water, be that surfing and exploring the rugged coves of the South-West or dinghy sailing and swimming on the North Norfolk coast. Much of my weekends are spent as the chief mucker-out of our ponies or indeed the driver to wherever my wife and daughter are riding. Having been a keen oarsman back in the mists of time, I do my best to maintain a vague level of fitness on the rowing machine, my bike and I enjoy pulling on my running shoes to explore new routes and trails. Living now near Henley, I very much hope to have the time one day to get back into a boat as well. We have always been involved with our local Church wherever we have lived and this has made us feel part of the community. I encourage my children with their art, and enjoy nothing more than pulling out my sketch book or easel, and visiting exhibitions is something that we all enjoy doing together. Inspired by their mother, who is a professional flautist, our own children are keen musicians and as a result our house is never quiet. I wouldn’t have it any other way.