I have taught in the English Department at Stowe since 2017. Prior to life at Stowe, I taught English Literature in several universities in the United States, where I achieved tenure as an Associate Professor at Wittenberg University in 2010. I spent much of my life on football pitches, playing at university level in the States and for a year at University College, Dublin, and spend what free time I can steal to play ultimate frisbee, squash, tennis, or guitar. A First Lieutenant in Stowe’s Combined Cadet Force, I am the Master of Clay Pigeon Shooting and also a Paddlesport instructor, finding every excuse I can to get onto the Stowe lakes in a canoe.
I live in Grafton with my wife, Dr Hester Westley (Project Director of Artists’s Lives, National Life Stories, at the British Library), our two sons, Caspar and Stanhope, and their greyhound.
The House ethos is represented memorably by the House crest: the name ‘Grafton’ appears between two Latin phrases, virtus and integritas. Integrity - doing the right thing, even when nobody is watching - is at the core of Grafton’s spirit: the boys take pride in their efforts, and they thrive by displaying and receiving respect.
The Grafton crest also features the three-petaled fleur-de-lis, which is a visual reminder to the boys of the House’s informing values: Humanity, Humility, and Humour.
Established in 1926 and named after the Grafton Hunt (which, in turn, took its name from the Duke of Grafton), Grafton House has enjoyed nearly a century of successes.
Displaying excellence equally on sporting pitches (the roster of Graftonian athletes includes Bernard Gadney and Ben Duckett) and dramatic stages (David Niven and Harry Cavill both called Grafton home), the House takes well-earned pride in its history, but it blends a respect for tradition with a progressive, inclusive vision that encourages each Graftonian to think imaginatively, reflectively, and creatively on every endeavour he encounters.
"Grafton is not just a place where I study and sleep; it is a special community, a brotherhood, where I have created lifelong bonds and have thrived with the support of the amazing House team.
The word that best describes Grafton is ‘integritas’, meaning as a whole House we strive for integrity in everything we do."