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Old Bloxhamist, Ian Davenport, Set to Head the UK's Leading Boarding School Bursary Charity

RNFC & SpringBoard Bursary Foundation MergeOld Bloxhamist and Bloxham School Governor, Ian Davenport, is set to head the UK's leading boarding school bursary charity, it was announced this week. 

The new organisation will be formed from a merger of the Royal National Children’s Foundation (RNCF), which traces its history back to 1827, and the SpringBoard Bursary Foundation, which was founded in 2012. Mr Davenport will be the Chief Executive of the new charity, having previously held the role of Chief Executive of SpringBoard Bursary Foundation. Bloxham is a partner school of SpringBoard which aims to transform the lives of disadvantaged children through full bursaries at state and independent boarding schools. 

Mr Davenport says: “With bursary school charities facing a record demand for the support they offer, the new charity will focus on building on the great work of the Royal National Children’s Foundation and The SpringBoard Bursary Foundation. The aim is to increase the number of children currently supported by RNCF and SpringBoard, taking the figure from 600 to 1,500 within the next five years. In doing so, the new charity will transform many lives and fulfil the boarding sector’s ambition to play a leading role in enabling social mobility.”

As a result of the merger, more than 600 disadvantaged children will be able to attend UK boarding schools from September 2017. There, they will be given the opportunity to fulfil their true academic and personal potential. The new charity will continue to support the nearly 400 vulnerable children previously supported by the RNCF and the nearly 200 disadvantaged children previously supported by SpringBoard. 

Mr Davenport was subject to a high-profile interview on BBC Radio 5 Live's Breakfast Show on Wednesday. He spoke coolly and eloquently during a ten minute interview in which he was subjected to some seraching questions and he certainly got his message across; reactions from listeners afterwards were overwhelmingly positive, with most stressing the positives of boarding and many complaining about Nicky Campbell's negative tone. The interviewer later concluded on Twitter that 'I think I misjudged it. But he was very good', and such was the interest created by the interview that Radio 5 Live chose to make boarding schools the subject of the station's flagship phone-in programme Your Call in the morning. For those interested in hearing the interview, it is between 34.00 and 44.10 if you follow this link: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b08q45bm

We wish Mr Davenport every success in the new charity, and we are looking forward to our future involvement with SpringBoard.