Join our panel of speakers to debate the question of how we can achieve an inclusive and relational educational system and the role of government, schools and teachers in reaching this goal.

Following the panel session we would invite you to join us for a drinks reception celebrating both the Rees Centre’s new five year strategy and our new website highlighting the Centre’s research on attachment and trauma informed practice.

This event will take place in Seminar Room A, Department of Education, 15 Norham Gardens, Oxford OX2 6PY.


5pm – 6.30pm: Panel discussion

6.30pm – 7.30pm: Drinks reception

This is an in-person event.

Register for in-person attendance


Speaker: Sir John Timpson


Sir John Timpson was educated at Oundle and Nottingham University.

The Timpson family business was taken over in 1973, but 10 years later Sir John led a £42m management buyout.  In 1987 he sold the shoe shops and concentrated on building the shoe repairing and key cutting business.

Timpson now has over 2000 branches nationwide with a turnover of £300m. It is a private business wholly owned by Sir John Timpson and his family. Timpson is the UK’s most active employer of people from prison. In 2018 Sir John chaired an expert panel that made recommendations to government on future plans for Town Centres.

Sir John was married to his late wife Alex for 47 years. He has five children and Sir John and his wife were foster carers for 31 years during which time they fostered 90 children.

He describes his business philosophy in his book, ‘Upside Down Management’ and has a weekly column in the Daily Telegraph.

In 2004 he was awarded the CBE in the Birthday Honours List for Services to the Retail Sector, and in 2017 he was awarded a knighthood for Services to Business and Fostering.


Speaker: Andy Wright

Andrew Wright


Andy is the chair of the Attachment Research Community (ARC), ASCL Council Member for Virtual Schools and Trustee of the West Midlands Virtual School Children In Care Foundation.

Andy has over 40 years of teaching experience, including over 10 years as Head Teacher/Principal, in a range of secondary school across the West Midlands. A clear strategic thinker, he has an expertise in school improvement within challenging settings, transforming the ethos of schools, the behaviour, attendance and attainment of young people. He has been recognised by Ofsted as a leader who sets ‘a clear direction and vision focusing on raising aspirations and achievements’.

Andy has a keen understanding of developing an inclusive curriculum both within and across schools. He has influenced innovation in curriculum design through a range of strategic roles including chair of a collaborative network of schools, regional and national strategy groups and has directly integrated partners from the world of work into the learning experiences.

Andy has recently retired as Head Teacher of Dudley Virtual School for Children In Care which supported over 600 young people in their educational settings. As the Head Teacher of the Virtual School, he was committed to developing a sustainable system of support to enable all children to develop into independent and successful adults. He recognises the importance of strong partnerships across services, businesses and agencies and has developed a menu of support and opportunities in a ‘Learning Tool Kit’ for Children in Care.


Speaker: Catherine Lowther

Catherine Lowther


Dr Cath Lowther qualified as an Educational Psychologist in 2012 and worked in local authorities in South East England in that capacity until the end of 2021. She is now the General Secretary of the Association of Educational Psychologists, the trade union and professional body of educational psychologists, representing approximately 80% of that workforce across the UK. She has also worked as a teacher, youth worker and manager of a Sure Start Children’s Centre. She is passionate about mental health, resilience, inclusion and education reform, early intervention, the voice of young people and co-production. Her Twitter handle is @CathLowther


This is an in-person event.

Register for in-person attendance