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Introducing our Patrons

We have a highly esteemed and talented group of Patrons supporting our mission in the North of England.

David Beckham OBE

Sportsman and charity ambassador

Sir Howard Bernstein

Former Chief Executive of Manchester City Council

Access to a good education is a basic right and one of the foundations of our society. I’ve seen first-hand the positive impact of SHINE’s work across the country. As a Patron I am committed to helping the charity to tackle the most significant challenges in education across the North of England.

Professor Gavin Brown

Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Education at the University of Liverpool

At the University of Liverpool, we are passionate about making sure that young people from all backgrounds have access to the best quality education. I am delighted to be a Patron of SHINE and to support the charity’s work in the North of England. It is vital that we make sure that all children in the North can discover their potential at school and excel in further education and beyond.

Sarah Brown

British campaigner for global health and education

Gavyn Davies OBE

Economist and former chairman of the BBC

Professor Chris Day

Vice-Chancellor and President of Newcastle University

SHINE and Newcastle University are united in our aim to support more young people from disadvantaged backgrounds to benefit from a high-quality education. The fact that so many children from low income homes in the North East fall behind during secondary school, and then do not leave school with good GCSEs, is a concern of mine. I look forward to supporting SHINE’s work in this area.

Sir Alex Ferguson CBE

World-renowned football manager

SHINE gives children the chance to make the most of themselves; it gives them the chance to turn their potential into reality. Who wouldn’t want that?

Professor Sir Chris Husbands

Vice-Chancellor of Sheffield Hallam University

The strategic priorities of our South Yorkshire Futures programme are very closely aligned with SHINE’s focus. We are both looking to improve outcomes for disadvantaged children in the early years of education and the transition from primary to secondary school. I’m proud to be a Patron of SHINE and to be taking a lead role in making sure that young people in the North of England are not left behind.

Sir Alan Langlands

Vice-Chancellor of the University of Leeds

Every child should be given a fair chance to succeed at school and go on to realise their full potential in later life. Sadly, for a lot of children, this is not currently the case. I am proud to support SHINE in its bold new vision for the North, and I would urge others to fully support them in any way they can.

Professor Susan Lea

Vice-Chancellor of the University of Hull

All young people, regardless of their background, should be able to achieve their dreams. I’m proud to support SHINE’s work helping schools to test pioneering interventions that will help to raise attainment and allow more children to realise their true abilities.

Anne Longfield CBE

Campaigner and former Children’s Commissioner for England

It is fantastic to see SHINE refocus its strategy on the North of England. My Growing Up North report shone a light on the challenges that children in communities across the region face. I am looking forward to working with SHINE to make sure that children most in need in the North are supported to achieve their potential at school.

Gary Neville

Football coach

In the UK today, a child from a low-income home is much more likely to get poor GCSE results in comparison to their wealthier classmates. This is incredibly unjust and it’s even more prevalent in the North of England. I’m proud to be a Patron of SHINE and to be supporting the charity’s work to make sure more children can achieve their dreams.

Lord Gus O'Donnell

Economist and former Cabinet Secretary

Sir Peter Ogden

Businessman and founder of the Ogden Trust

George Osborne

Newspaper editor and former politician

SHINE has played a part in helping London schools to innovate and be the success stories that they are. By supporting SHINE, you can help to replicate this work in the North.

Professor Dame Alison Richard

Former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Cambridge and anthropologist

I know how important it is for children to have the best possible opportunities from the early years of education. If a child has a negative experience during this early stage, it can have a huge impact on their outcomes at school, job prospects and their health and wellbeing. I was thrilled when SHINE made the move to the North of England and made the decision to focus part of its work on the early years of education.

Nick Robinson

Journalist and broadcaster

Giving kids from poor communities some decent opportunities to succeed at school has always been an incredibly worthwhile cause. To get them a good job, it’s essential that these children leave school with the best possible grades, and that makes SHINE’s work even more important than ever.

Professor Dame Nancy Rothwell

President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Manchester

In recent years there has been much written about the educational success of London in comparison to other parts of the country. SHINE has a strong track record in raising school attainment and aspirations, and I look forward to seeing this impact replicated across the North. By supporting SHINE, you can help give all children a fair chance to succeed.

June Sarpong OBE

TV presenter

Nicola Shindler OBE

TV producer

Dr Sushil Wadhwani CBE

Economist and founder and co-CEO of Wadhwani Asset Management LLP