Meeting Michael Wilson, headmaster of Cranleigh Prep School

If Michael Wilson was PM, he says he_d stop education being used a political football

If Michael Wilson was PM, he says he_d stop education being used a political football - Credit: NA

The headmaster of Cranleigh Prep School in Cranleigh, Surrey, Michael Wilson is nothing if not multi-talented; he was previously a Davis Cup tennis coach, has also run a safari company and even thought about becoming a doctor at one stage…

If you hadn’t become a teacher, what would you have done instead?

I would have become a doctor if I hadn’t ended up spending too much time playing tennis but this at least gave me some time as a Davis Cup coach, which took me back to Kenya. It gave me the chance to work with a very talented group of young players. I taught and we ran a safari company at the same time.

What were your favourite lessons when you were at school?

Biology (and also general studies because the lessons took place at Sherborne Girls’ School!).

Was there any type of school dinner that you couldn’t stand?

Macaroni cheese.

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How do you like to relax?

Playing golf, going to our house in France and building a new Cranleigh in Abu Dhabi!

Which is your favourite film?

Out of Africa because Sydney Pollack really understood the essence of Africa. I also love the music and the memories that it evokes of my childhood.

So, your Desert Island Disc...?

The Sound of Silence by Simon and Garfunkel, having seen them at Wembley Stadium in the early ‘80s. I have become a Clapton fan late in life as well, having seen him in concert recently.

If you were Prime Minister for one day, what’s the first thing you’d do?

I would form a cross-party committee with people who really understand education and stop it being the political football it has become. I would then get them to focus on improving the bottom 10 per cent of schools, rather than blanket bombing the entire system.


School of thought...

Maths or English? It would have to be English I think.

School dinners or packed lunch? School dinners, particularly if chocolate is involved.

Newsletter or Twitter? Neither – no one reads the former and too many read the latter.


Cranleigh Prep School, Horseshoe Lane, Cranleigh, Surrey GU6 8QH. A preparatory school for boys and girls with both day and boarding provision. Tel: 01483 542058 /

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