Meet the Team
We have experienced, mature outdoor practitioners who understand how to run a safe, fun and educational programme.
An excellent team of staff is the key to running adventure activities safely. At Encompass Training, we use a range of well-qualified and experienced staff. All staff are fully checked by the Disclosure and Barring Service (formerly CRB).
See also: Safety
“The instructors were great. Friendly, organised. Spoke to the children appropriately. School staff felt at ease with them and knew that their top priority was the children’s safety. Instructors encouraged children to complete activities which were challenging to them although there was no pressure. Instructors were relaxed with children but commanded respect from them which was good. Pleased that children were encouraged to be independent and organise themselves for the day’s activities.” Class Teacher, Devon
Alastair Rice took on Great Potheridge House at the beginning of 2010. Since then much has been done, with the support of our landlord, the Clinton Estate, to renovate the house and barns. Alastair has been working in outdoor education for over twenty years as an instructor, centre manager, lecturer and operations manager. In his spare time he’s travelled extensively, climbing everywhere from the Alps to the Andes.
Claire is the Centre Manager. She joined our team in 2014, and is also a fully qualified instructor. Claire is very experienced in the field of outdoor education. She has been working in the industry for the past twenty years.
Claire’s job is to make sure you are getting everything you want from Encompass Training. Claire will liase with you while you are here to learn what you, as a group, have gained or would like to gain from your stay with us. Claire enjoys all the outside activities, especially kayaking, and is a very enthusiastic instructor. Claire’s sidekick is Banjo.
Andy has been working in outdoor education for nearly thirty years. His work has involved him working for the young people’s charity, Fairbridge, and taken him to places such as Norway and Scotland. With many years of experience behind him and a range of high level qualifications such as his Mountaineering Instructor Award, Andy is the ideal person to be Technical Advisor for our licensed activities. Andy has recently returned from Argentina, having climbed the highest mountain in the Americas, Mount Aconcagua!
Milo has been an instructor one way or another here longer than we have been running Great Potheridge! He is qualified in many outdoor activities. Milo has lots of experience working with young people from all kinds of backgrounds. He has also worked as Centre Manager at several outdoor centres, and as Operations Manager for the Fairbridge charity centre in Bristol. In his free time, Milo is a very experienced diver and enjoys a spot of cave diving.
Tom has been working here for over five years. When not leading groups in the outdoors, he’s off having his own adventures. Tom has been working in Patagonia for two of the last three winters, climbing, sea kayaking among icebergs and trekking over ice fields. Tom studied outdoor education at Duchy College.
Debs has been working for us for the past four years as a freelancer. When she is not working for us she is Senior Field Tutor and Head of Biology at Slapton Ley Field Centre. She has many qualifications in the outdoor industry, and is very experienced. Debs has recently returned from Argentina, having climbed the highest mountain in the Americas, Mount Aconcagua!
Dayna started working at Encompass several years ago as part of her college course. Following this she completed her apprenticeship with us and has worked here, on and off ever since. Dayna also runs Great Torrington Scout Group including their Ten Tors team. If she has any spare time, she enjoys walking on Dartmoor and caravanning.
Steve has been working in outdoor education for many years with young people from a variety of backgrounds and also adults on corporate programmes. He has a wide range of outdoor qualifications and his passion for the outdoors has taken him to a number of places both abroad and in the UK.
Louise is the Office Manager at Encompass having gained experience in a number of administrative/office manager roles in the banking, insurance and IT industries. She is also a qualified Sports Massage and Holistic Therapist, Health Coach and Meditation Teacher. In her spare time, she enjoys the outdoors, hiking, kayaking and cycling.
Hannah became one of our full-time instructors after completing her apprenticeship with us. She has acquired a number of years experience working with children as a Brownie Leader since the age of 16 and has also completed an Outdoor Qualification at Exeter College. In her spare time, she is a keen surfer.
Trevor is one of our full-time instructors. He started work with us five years ago as a freelancer, having worked in other centres and having completed an apprenticeship in Outdoor Leadership. Outside of work, Trevor is a keen climber.
Bill worked for a holiday letting agency for fourteen years as a manager, organising bookings and overseeing all aspects of holiday letting. He has also worked as a chef for 20 years on and off. He loves to cook at home for friends and family and for various functions. His own son attended a residential at Potheridge House. Funny fact: Bill is a classically trained singer!
What the schools say about him:
“The barbeque was really good and the chef was amazing! Great food.” -A regular school.
“ Thanks to all the kitchen staff especially Bill. 10+ out of 10 for the food!” -Edward Bryant School
Claire’s sidekick is Banjo – a sprocker (Springer Spaniel/Cocker Spaniel cross), a very young, energetic and friendly dog who is sure to give you a warm and happy welcome.
Our furry member of staff, Molly, is responsible for site security, chasing balls and entertaining adults and children alike. She is a Border Terrier/Labrador cross and is very friendly and gentle with young people who are not used to dogs.