New headteacher returns to her roots in Burnley to take up her first headship

Mrs Ellel surrounded by some of her pupils
Mrs Ellel surrounded by some of her pupils

A teacher has returned to her hometown of Burnley to take up her first headship.

Mrs Maria Ellel has taken over the reins at Wellfield Methodist and Anglican Primary School and, although she now lives in the Ribble Valley, she is Burnley born and bred.

Mrs Ellel grew up in the Harle Syke area of the town and is a former pupil of St John's RC Primary School. She also attended Colne's Fisher More RC High.

After studying at Edge Hill University Mrs Ellel taught at a number of schools including Whalley Primary, where she was associate headteacher, St Peter and St Paul's Primary in Rishton and also Heasandford Primary in Burnley.

Speaking about her new role at the Wellfield Drive school, Mrs Ellel said: "This is a wonderful, friendly and thriving school and we are aiming for excellence in all areas, particularly the children's learning experience and the best possible outcomes for them.

"There is a lot happening here at the moment and some very exciting times ahead."

In her free time, Mrs Ellel loves walking in the Ribble Valley countryside with her husband Andrew and their two dogs.

The couple also have three children. Bradley (20) is studying computer science at the University of York and Hayden (13) is a pupil at St Augustine's RC High School in Billington. Their youngest is 10-year-old Tilly who attends Whalley Primary School.

A competitive Latin and ballroom dancer the family are often busy taking Tilly to competitions and she recently competed with Team GB in China.