A top Taunton college has announced it will have a new female principal for the first time in its 400-year history.
John Abbott, the current principal of Richard Huish College, is set to become the full-time chief executive of the Richard Huish Education Group.
Emma Fielding, the current deputy principal, will take over the headship from September 2020.
Ms Fielding has worked in post-16 education for 17 years in a variety of roles.
She said: “It is a great privilege to be given the opportunity to become the new principal at Richard Huish College.
“I am very proud to be part of such an exceptional college with its reputation for delivering outstanding education to the people of Taunton, Somerset and beyond.
“I believe the college truly is at the heart of the local community and has a massively positive impact on the lives of so many, not just our students.”
As the Huish Education Group grows, the need for a full-time CEO has become necessary.
Along with the Taunton Academy, the Huish Education Group also now includes Nerrols Primary School, North Curry Primary School, North Town Primary School, West Buckland Primary School and very shortly Lyngford Park Primary School.
Mr Abbott agreed to change his role at the college as the trust works towards improving all of its education institutions.
Mr Abbot has been principal and chief executive of the college since January 2013, but has worked at Huish since 2003.
He said: “I have worked in further education for more than 25 years and am passionate about the impact it can have on everybody’s lives, but particularly young people.
“I am proud to have been principal here; all my teaching and support staff colleagues show outstanding commitment to the development of our students and I am delighted that I will continue to work closely with the college as chief executive of the Huish Education Group.”