History

Welcome to the History Department 

Teaching staff at St Catherine’s are passionate about their subject.  We are so fortunate to teach a subject which never fails to inform and excite.  History is a rich tapestry unfolding with ever passing day.  It is a subject which allows pupils to use their skills of judgement, analysis and evaluation to their fullest extent.    

This is a subject which takes a robust pride in its academic rigour.  It is the most ‘human’ of all the subjects because it is ‘our story’.  Like a landscape whose textures, colour and mood change according to time, weather and season, so our perspective on the past changes with each passing generation.  History is very alive at St Catherine’s.  Take a look at our website to gain a further insight.

History Department Staff
  • Mrs Gillian David - Head of Department. B.A. Manchester, PGCE (History & Politics) / Marketing 
    email: gill.david@stcatherines.info
    Has been teaching more years than she cares to remember in both the state and the independent sectors! She was taught at Manchester by eminent historian Ian Kershaw although his specialist subject, Nazi Germany, is not one of her favourites. She has always had a fascination for Russian history and can indulge this interest at St Catherine’s in the A Level Russian Rulers 1855-1964 module and indeed by taking the Sixth Form to Russia every other year. She loves to teach the First World War and the French Revolution. When she is not reading history non-fiction, she likes to go on long walks, do armchair genealogy and sail.
  • Mrs Angelique Burns, BA Leeds PGCE (History)
    email: angelique.burns@stcaterines.info
    Joined St Catherine’s in 2012 having taught previously in both the state and independent sectors, including three years as Head of History at a girls’ school in Croydon. Although specialising in Tudor and Victorian History at University, her academic interests go far beyond that and are ever-changing as friends and family buy her new books! She has a keen interest in Russian History, particularly the Stalinist period, and has a current obsession with the Stasi in East Germany - sparked by a recent visit to Berlin. For bedtime reading, ‘Horrible Histories’ is preferred!
  • Mrs Nicky Higgs,  BA Manchester (History) 
    Second in Department / Politics
    email: nicky.higgs@stcatherines.info

    Joined St Catherine’s in September 2013 having previously worked in both the state and independent sectors, including three years as Head of Year at a girls’ grammar school in Kent and a spell as an AST (Advanced Skills Teacher) In addition to her teaching experience, Nicky spent 18 months working as an Education Officer for the Holocaust Educational Trust, an organisation who she still has links with, notably through our 6th formers taking part on their Lessons from Auschwitz Project. Nicky also leads the annual assembly to commemorate Holocaust Memorial Day each January. Nicky enjoys teaching many aspects of history with the Cold War and Weimar and Nazi Germany being particular favourites. Outside of the classroom, Nicky keeps very busy bringing up a young son, indulging her passion for good food and drink, spending time with loved ones and attending as many loud rock music concerts as possible!

  • Mrs Isabel Cook, BA, MEd Ed Leadership Buckingham email: isabel.cook@stcatherines.info
    Joined St Catherine’s in September 2017. Isabel has had a varied career working across Independent and State Sectors. She has also delivered training to teachers and worked within Senior Management. Most recently, she was Head of History in an independent girls’ school in Hampshire. It was here that she completed a Masters of Education from the University of Buckingham. Isabel loves all History! At university she studied a wide variety of options from Crusading Warfare to Vietnam. More recently, following a trip to Russia, she has become fascinated by all things relating to Soviet Russia. Beyond the classroom, Isabel works within boarding as the Keller Boarding House Mistress. When she is not in school she enjoys spending time with her loved ones, travelling and cycling. Being half French, she enjoys the odd glass of wine too!

Mrs Gillian David

Mrs Angelique Burns

Mrs Nicky HIggs

Mrs Isabel Cook