DLD College London atrium interior

Leadership Team

Our staff come from a diverse range of backgrounds, many have enjoyed previous careers in academia, government service, industry and commerce. Many of our teachers have been educated at the UK’s top universities and have a depth of experience.

Leadership Team

Irfan Latif, Principal

Irfan Latif, Principal of DLD College London

Qualifications: BSc (Hons), PGCE, FRSA, FRSC

Irfan Latif joined DLD College London in January 2018 having been the Headmaster of Sexey’s School in Bruton, Somerset for nearly five years. During his career Irfan has held a number of leadership roles in the independent sector, including Deputy Head (Academic) at Bedford School, Head of Science and Chemistry at St Benedict’s School in Ealing, Senior Housemaster at Whitgift School, as well as being an Assistant Housemaster and Teacher of Chemistry at The Haberdashers’ Aske’s School for Boys.

Educated at Emanuel School, London, Irfan graduated from King’s College, University of London with a BSc (Hons) in Chemistry, followed by a PGCE in Secondary Education and is currently studying for an MA in Educational Leadership at the University of Buckingham. At university he was on the student council and played representative sport, including rowing.

Irfan has an active role in boarding and is currently on the Executive Committee of the Boarding Schools’ Association, having been their Vice Chair, he is also Chair of the London Boarding Forum and on the Board of Directors at AGBIS. In addition, Irfan is a co-founder of the Inclusion and Diversity group for the Independent Schools’ Council and he also sat on the Board of Education at the Diocese of Bath & Wells.

Outside of College, he enjoys art and attending galleries, museums and concerts, follows Arsenal FC and Wasps RFC, camping and trekking, and engaging in politics. He is married to Jocelyn (a former Head of Science at a leading independent girls’ school) and they have two daughters and their Jack Russell terrier, Rodney.

Tom Hadcroft, Senior Vice Principal (Academic)

Tom Hadcroft joined DLD College London in August 2016, overseeing the boarding and pastoral areas of the College. He is wholly committed to strengthening the excellent support structures that the college offers and can draw on a wealth of experience gained in both the UK and Internationally.

Tom was a Senior Houseparent at Collège Alpin Beau Soleil for five years, an international boarding school located in the Swiss Alps. Prior to this experience he worked for seven years as Assistant Boarding Housemaster and Head of Department at St John’s School, Leatherhead. Previous to that, he worked both in the UK and Europe in the education and finance sectors.

Tom has a particular interest in the emotional wellbeing of the students. He is focussed on providing an enhanced framework, ensuring the whole community is focussed on realising the individual potential of the students. He has worked to develop the College’s Wellbeing Centre alongside a culture of coaching within the College and also to define the urban boarding experience.

Tom has experience as an International School Accreditor for CIS, he is a course tutor for the Boarding Schools’ Association, a Mental Health First Aid Youth instructor and is currently working on an MEd in Educational Leadership from the University of Buckingham.

James Kidd, Vice Principal (Pastoral)

James joined DLD College London in September 2020 from St. John’s School, Leatherhead where he was Assistant Headteacher (Boarding and Co-Curricular). Prior to this he was a Housemaster in the largest boys’ boarding house in the school and previously spent five years as a successful Head of Department. He teaches Economics and Business Studies and continues to teach and inspire students at DLD.

With two post-graduate Masters degrees, an MA in Educational Leadership and Management from the University of Nottingham and an MA in Business Management from Kingston University, James also has the BSA boarding management qualification from Roehampton University.

James is passionate about holistic education and the development of young people and is pleased to have joined the DLD College London team where he can support the College with its ambitious development plans and growth strategy over the years to come.

Outside of school, James is a governor at a state school and is also team manager for the Surrey Schools’ Athletics Team. For his sins, he admits to being a Spurs and Quins fan and he loves a bit of karaoke!

Helen Edwardson, Bursar

Helen joined DLD College London in September 2021 from Prior’s Field School in Surrey. Helen is an experienced school bursar, having worked in a number of schools – independent, boarding and state and in industry too, where she was a Business Director for the Ogilvy Group and an accountant at PWC.

Helen is an Oxford graduate, having read Modern Languages (Italian) at St Anne’s College and has studied for several qualifications, including management studies, school business management and accountancy. Helen is also keen to get involved in the co-curricular life of the school, including boarding.


John Branney, Assistant Principal (Teaching and Learning)

John Branney

Qualifications: MA, BA (Hons), PCET

John joined DLD College in 2013 and has almost 20 years of experience as a classroom teacher. Having previously worked with the Centre of Excellence in Teacher Training with the University of Warwick, where he was responsible for delivering initial teacher training programmes, he has maintained a keen interest in pedagogy. John has worked as an examiner and author for OCR (Oxford, Cambridge and RSA), writing exam papers and co-authoring new A-Level qualifications. A keen academic, John has achieved post graduate qualifications with the University of Warwick and the University of Exeter.

John is an award-winning teacher and was presented with the Most Inspirational Teacher award at the Shine Media Awards, an award that was sponsored by the Times Educational Supplement (TES). His students have also received a number of national awards, in recognition of their exceptional work. In his spare time, John works as a freelance journalist and has written for a number of publications including The Guardian. He also works with a variety of youth groups, leading mentoring programmes and projects around climate change. John enjoys running long distance and has raised money for a number of charities, including The Blue Cross.

Gareth Evans, Assistant Principal (Lower School)

Gareth Evans, Assistant Principal (Lower School)Qualifications: BA (Hons), MA, PGCE

Gareth joined DLD College London in August 2016 as Director of Studies before being promoted to Assistant Principal (Lower School). He joined us from Strode’s College where he was Head of the Creative Arts Faculty since 2009.

Aside from his role as Assistant Principal, Gareth currently teaches Film and Business Studies at A Level. He has also taught Media A Level and Film Studies GCSE. Gareth is an examiner and moderator for EDUQAS. Beyond these academic commitments, Gareth is involved in a number of CCA’s including Community Projects, Run Club and the Duke of Edinburgh Award.

In his free time Gareth is an avid ‘very’ amateur surfer and enjoys spending time on the beach. Gareth is a keen member of the community where he lives and was elected as District Councillor in May 2019. He is also an award-winning community volunteer which recognised his contribution to his local community. He has been involved in setting up a history society, running an oral history project in collaboration with ‘Discovering Stratford Village’, organising inter-generational disco parties, running children’s events at the local library and is co-presenter of East End Mystery Show on East London Radio.

Gareth is also a school Governor for Loxwood Primary School in West Sussex where he lives and is currently working towards his second Masters in Senior Leadership and Management.

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