I graduated from the University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne with a first class honours degree in English Literature in 1981. From 1981 until 1986 I was a post-graduate student at Cambridge University and a member of Gonville and Caius College. I received my PhD in English Literature in 1986.
I began teaching when I was a post-graduate, supervising undergraduate dissertations and teaching literature and language for a number of Cambridge schools. I also taught intensive courses in secondary schools in Cremona and Padova, Italy.
In 1984 I was awarded a fellowship to pursue research in the USA and spent a term in the Huntington Library, Pasadena. I moved to Madrid in 1992, initially working as a teacher and ADOS for King’s College. From 1993 until 2016 I worked for the British Council teaching adults, as a teacher trainer and in materials development. Literature was, and is, my passion but I greatly enjoy language teaching and the challenge of helping students realize their potential as learners. I try and identify not only what students need, but also the best way of helping them develop according to their interests, objectives and learning style. My teacher training work includes courses for CAM, CRIF Acacias, CEP Inca and Manacor, TESOL and British Council Teacher conferences. This work is immensely rewarding and ensures my ideas about theories of teaching are rooted in the realities facing teachers on a daily basis.
I am also a published writer and my work includes academic articles, poetry and course book materials. Upper Street is a school for students of English language – where for specific purposes such as exams, or general interest, people who want to learn about literature and drama in English and for teachers who wish to develop their skills and interests.