Phil Ward has been the Headmaster of Thomas’s Clapham since September 2012. He was appointed after 12 happy and successful years as the Headmaster of Feltonfleet, Cobham. Phil was educated at Reigate Grammar School and Exeter University, after which he joined the staff at Uppingham, becoming the Director of PE, and the Senior Housemaster in due course. He is a Governor of three senior schools, two of which have their own prep schools. Phil and his wife Sue, who is a Year 5 teacher at Clapham, live near to the school, and have two grown-up children. 

January 2020:

We write to inform you that, after what will have been nine years of outstanding service to the school community of Thomas’s Clapham, Phil Ward has made the decision to retire from headship and his tenure as Headmaster will come to a close at the end of the next academic year, in July 2021.

We have no doubt that there will be universal acclaim for the vision, passion, energy and good humour with which Phil has led his school. His unerring ability to see the world through the eyes of a child has enabled him and his team to create an educational environment which is imaginative, inspiring and kind. There will be time in due course to express our collective gratitude to Phil for his outstanding qualities as a leader and to show our appreciation to both Phil and Sue for the dedication, commitment and sheer hard work which they have given to Thomas’s Clapham throughout almost a decade.

Happily for the wider Thomas’s community, we will not lose sight of the Wards altogether. Following his headship, Phil has agreed to take up the new post of Director of Education for Thomas’s London Day Schools as a whole and he will play a key leadership role as we grow a Thomas’s education into the senior years, starting with Year 9 in September 2021. These plans are developing at pace and we will write with further details in the coming weeks.

In the meantime, we have already put measures in place to appoint an outstanding successor to lead Thomas’s Clapham from September 2021. We will, of course, keep you informed as this process unfolds and will hope to make a further announcement before the end of the academic year.

Phil and his tremendous team of senior leaders will be sure to maintain momentum and to ensure a smooth handover when the time comes, assisted greatly by his ongoing role at Thomas’s. For now, we know that you will join us in giving heartfelt thanks to Phil and to Sue for their outstanding service to the community of Thomas’s Clapham.

With best wishes,

Tobyn Thomas and Ben Thomas, Principals
Thomas’s London Day Schools

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