New Gateshead College principal and chief executive Judith Doyle said she was “thrilled” and “proud” to be taking up the post.

She had been deputy principal for curriculum and quality at the college for four years before taking over the role on August 1 following the retirement of Richard Thorold.

“I am thrilled to be appointed and feel privileged and proud to have been given the opportunity to lead Gateshead College,” said Ms Doyle, the college’s first female principal.

“I am really looking forward to building on Richard’s excellent work to ensure that Gateshead is the college of choice for students and employers.”

Ms Doyle has more than a quarter of a century’s experience in FE having joined the college teaching team as an English lecturer in 1987 after completing her teacher training there.

She then moved on to a role developing adult community learning provision across Gateshead, followed by senior management roles as director of teaching and learning, and assistant principal for quality, before taking up her deputy principal post.

Outgoing principal Mr Thorold said: “I am delighted to be passing on the principal’s baton to Judith and wish her the best of luck in taking the college forward to an even brighter future.

“I know the college will go on to even greater achievements under her leadership and she will be absolutely dedicated to the staff, students and community we serve.”

Robin Mackie, chair of the board of governors, said the quality of applicants for the role had been “extremely high”.

He said: “Judith is a highly talented, extremely motivated and dedicated individual who impressed with her ambition, commitment and passion for Gateshead College and the wider region.”

Ms Doyle said: “It is an exciting and challenging time to be involved in further education.

“I am absolutely focused and devoted to making sure that all students continue to receive the highest quality training to equip them with the skills and confidence that will provide the important foundations for their future success, give them the edge in the jobs market and help them to adapt to a constantly changing world.”

The college got a grade three (satisfactory) Ofsted inspection result in June last year.

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  1. John fairbairn

    Dear Ms Doyle, congratulations on your recent appointment. Perhaps one of your first moves should be to reduce the waste of rate payers money involved in the printing and distribution of your quality multi coloured printed booklet. I imagine on a conservative estimate that 75% weren’t even opened and ended up in the bi, hopefully recycled but doubtful. I’m sorry but I consider this a disrespectful waste of public money, especially when all services are making useful savings towards the turn around of this country’s fortunes. Yours Sincerely. John Fairbairn.