A New Hand On The Tiller - Clongowes Wood College

Posted: 26th August 2015

Following the departure of Fr Leonard Moloney last week, Mr Chris Lumb, has become the first lay headmaster of Clongowes Wood College… 

Chris (pictured above with the Rector, Fr Michael Sheil) was selected as headmaster following a rigourous selection process lasting several months, and has much experience in that role in boarding schools and in the Jesuit tradition. From 1997 – 2004 he was assistant headmaster at Mount St Mary’s, a Jesuit 350-pupil co-educational day and boarding school in Sheffield. He followed that with eight years (2004 – 2012) as headmaster of Austin Friars St Monica’s School in Carlisle, a 450-pupil, junior and senior co-educational day school in the Augustinian tradition. Between 2012 and 2014 Chris was headmaster of St Joseph’s College, Ipswich, a 600 student, junior and senior co-educational boarding and day school in the De La Salle tradition.

Chris, whose career has been marked by the pursuit of high academic standards, the nurturing of Catholic ethos and the support and development of diverse co-curricular opportunities, joins us from Stoke College, Suffolk where he was on a special assignment as Executive Headmaster. He has a BSc in Chemistry and an MEd in Science Education from Manchester University, and began his teaching career as a Chemistry teacher in 1986 in St Ambrose College, Altrincham, a Christian Brothers 700-pupil boys school.

Chris and his wife Eileen plan to live on the Clongowes campus, together with their sons Dan (16) and Sam (13), who will also attend the school as boarders. The Board looks forward to welcoming and supporting them as they integrate into our Clongowes Community, and Chris assumes the leadership of the school.

In a letter to the parents, Fr Moloney noted that he was particularly pleased that Chris has a deep familiarity with Jesuit spirituality and with Jesuit education from his time at Mount St. Mary’s in Sheffield. He concluded by wishing him and Eileen, and the two boys, every happiness and success over the coming years as they enter a new era in the evolving history of the school.


Declan O’Keeffe, Head of Communications

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