10 Questions with Paul Topping

Paul Topping is a member of the new Executive Leadership Team and Headteacher of Senior School Voorschoten at the British School in The Netherlands. He is designated a National Leader of Education by the Department for Education and is a serving Ofsted inspector. Paul has previously held Headships in two outstanding schools, including a National Teaching School in the West Midlands, UK.

Established over 80 years ago, the BSN is located in The Hague and is one of the largest international schools in Europe. For more information, go to https://www.britishschool.nl/

1. Which living person do you most admire?

At the moment, Jürgen Klopp. He has brought the spirit back to my home team.

2. Which talent would you most like to have?

The gift of being able to pick a language up easily.

3. What do you consider your greatest achievement?

Apart from having a child, cycling from Caen to Nice in 11 consecutive days in 40C heat – taking in Ventoux on the way.

4. Where would you most like to live?

Provence.

5. What is your favourite book?

A prayer for Owen Meany – John Irving.

6. What is your favourite £5 (or equivalent amount in your currency) treat?

A set of new guitar strings (well, half a set).

7. When you were a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

Both a surgeon and a foreign correspondent – presumably not at the same time.

8. What do you like to do in your spare time?

Cycle long distances.

9. What is on your bucket list?

I’ve seen my teenage heroes Sting, Paul Simon, Billy Joel and Elton John at big venues. I’d still love to see the Rolling Stones. (Tickets anyone?)

10. What is one thing people would be surprised to know about you?

I’m quite shy.