Meet the Team

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Jane Cummings

Jane spent 12 years working at  Strode College teaching Numeracy, Literacy and Study Skills to 16-20 year olds and also worked as a Family Learning Tutor during that time setting up and running courses to develop literacy and numeracy skills of both parents and Key Stage 1  children. 

At present Jane works as our horticultural therapist, having gained RHS Level 2 Certificate in Horticulture and completed a year’s training under the WRAGS scheme (Women Returning to Amenity Gardening) in all aspects of garden maintenance.  She has worked as a volunteer in community gardens working with adults and primary-school aged children and run a short pilot horticultural therapy course at a Special School in Somerset.  She has studied with Thrive and gained the Award in Social and Therapeutic Horticulture for Children with Special Educational Needs and the Diploma for Social and Therapeutic Horticulture from Coventry University.

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Mike King

Mike has a background in education and worked as a primary school Head teacher in Suffolk and Somerset, before changing career to work with Sport England as Active Communities Development Fund Manager for the South West region. As part of the Youth Offending Team in Bath & North East Somerset, he set up the successful ‘Compass’ Youth Inclusion Support Project – working with young people at risk of offending. He then moved on to become Regional Development Manager for a national charity where he gained valuable experience in the voluntary sector helping to promote volunteering amongst young people.

He is currently working with the Sedgemoor Learning Alliance (Community Learning Partnership) in Bridgwater, Somerset where he set up the Somerset Children’s University and over a period of six years successfully raised more than £500,000 for disadvantaged children in his area allowing them to partake in a variety of positive opportunities that would not normally have been available to them.

Most recently he helped set up and promote two Community Interest Companies (Social Enterprises) that now operate successfully in the Somerset area.

Mike is passionate about the benefits of extra-curricular activity and outdoor learning. He believes strongly that this type of learning is significant in helping to raise aspirations and self-esteem, improve well-being and have a positive influence on higher levels of educational attainment.

Over 85% of learning occurs outside the school! Children aged 9-14 yrs spend 900 hours a year in school and 1,500 hours a year watching television.

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Ann Watson

Ann Watson was a secondary school teacher for 25 years both in the UK and in Zambia. She then joined Connexions to work with young people in schools, trying to raise their aspirations and plan their career pathways. She has, more recently, been employed in curriculum support with students at Strode College. She is currently a development worker for Mendip and Sedgemoor Community Support, a small charity which helps local voluntary groups, and is gradually gaining control of her allotment in Wells.

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Dick Cummings

Dick is the Growing Roots secretary and, after many years working as a Chartered Engineer, spent 12 years teaching computing and electronics engineering at a several local FE colleges and is now retired, but very active!  Dick provides useful technical expertise to Growing Roots particularly in the areas of IT and he maintains the website. Dick has been a keen allotment holder for nearly 20 years.