AN independent school in Taunton is planning to invest in improvements over the coming year.

The new headmaster at Queen's College, Julian Noad, who starts in September, will oversee work on the fabric of the school.

The development was announced by chairman of the governors Mark Edwards at the end of year speech day yesterday (Thursday).

He said: "When we started the process of looking for a new head, it was the perfect time to sit and think about what we are looking for and the future shape of Queen’s College."

Mr Edwards thanked everyone who had contributed to the parental research project as part of the exercise.

He added: "This work is invaluable in helping us to make sure we are delivering what is wanted and critically focus on areas we can improve or, indeed, strive to aim higher where it’s clear we excel.

"The board of governors are committed to realising the ambition of Queen’s being a modern all-through college, truly fit for the 21st century."

He paid tribute to the current head, Dr Lorraine Earps, who is leaving after five years in charge to take up a headship in Cheshire.

Dr Earps thanked everyone who had supported her, particularly through the many challenges during the Covid-19 pandemic.

She singled out members of her leadership team and also praised the teachers and support staff, along with the pupils who had been “amazing”.

In her final speech, she showed two films – a collection of her favourite memories at Queen’s and a specially-recorded farewell song with students.

Speech day also heard from the head boy and head girl, Ollie Hughes and Molly Kelly, and Oscar Webb, president of the Old Queenians Association.

The guest speaker was Richard Browning, who attended Queen's from 1987 to 1997 and who is famous for his jet suit exploits.