Stephen Winkley Boarding Achievement Award – acknowledging the champions of boarding


Boarding Achievement Award

For over 50 years, the Boarding Schools’ Association (BSA) has championed boarding throughout the UK and internationally. We know that boarding has been, is and will continue to be a desirable education choice for thousands of parents and children, and we have worked to support schools that make this choice possible.


The BSA was fortunate enough to have as one of our Chairs (in 2003) Dr Stephen Winkley, previously Headmaster of Uppingham (1991–2006) and Rossall Schools (2008–13). Dr Winkley worked in boarding for over 40 years, spending much of that time promoting and celebrating the boarding community.

Dr Winkley was a boarder at St Edwards School, Oxford, moving from there to read Classics at Oxford, where he also completed his Doctor of Philosophy. Dr Winkley believed a boarding education is a way for young people to grow up in a safe environment, allowing them to learn about the world around them and how to work and live with others.

Dr Winkley was a prominent figure in the boarding sector, always willing to speak up on its behalf and always keeping the welfare of the pupils as the purpose of all his actions. His Headship of Uppingham and Rossall led both schools to brighter futures. And his Chairmanship of the BSA came at a vital time.

But most importantly, Dr Winkley was, first and foremost, a teacher. He lived and breathed education, and enjoyed spending time with his pupils. He shared their passion, intelligence, eccentricity and their sense of fun. He was always particularly interested in guiding pupils who were less prominent in school life but still needed a champion, as all children do.

After Dr Winkley’s death in 2014, the BSA created the Stephen Winkley Boarding Achievement Award in honour of his passion for the transformative effect a good boarding education can bring. This award commends the achievements of an individual who is employed in boarding at a BSA member school and who has made a significant contribution to the cause of boarding.

Now in its third year, the Stephen Winkley Boarding Achievement Award remains one of the most prestigious awards presented within the boarding sector.

To be shortlisted for the award, a member of staff must be nominated by either the Headteacher or the Chair of Governors, making the award a recognition not only from the BSA but also from those within the school who know them best.

Chief Executive of the BSA, Robin Fletcher, said of the award ‘The Stephen Winkley Award represents what that the BSA stands for – championing a boarding education and promoting excellence within boarding schools. A fitting tribute to a great Head.’

At the 2018 Annual Conference for Heads the award was presented to Margaret Baverstock of Felsted School. Ms Baverstock’s compassion, humour, forgiveness and legacy of care impressed the judges and truly represents all that Dr Winkley worked for. On her retirement in July 2018, Ms Baverstock would have had a positive influence on about 1,300 adolescent young men or ‘her boys’ during her 33 years in boarding education. She leaves behind a legacy of care and understanding.

The Stephen Winkley Boarding Achievement Award will continue to celebrate those who have had a lasting positive impact on the boarding community and it is a lasting testament to a true champion of boarding.


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