Meet the Team

  • Mary Lonsdale

    Mary Lonsdale CEO and Founder


    Mary started life at Merchant Taylor’s School for Girls and went on to study English and Classics at Leeds University. After graduating Mary spent the next 12 years as a Chartered Accountant. Mary grew up in a household of teachers and her dad tutored many students. This has meant that Mary has always loved education. Seeing how much her dad as a tutor changed the life of his students, inspired her to start up Mentor Education. Her passion and love for tutoring makes her the driving force of Mentor Education. Mary has two children Sophie and Jamie who are both at local schools in South London. In her spare time, she enjoys yoga and can often be found reading historical fiction.

  • Karol-An Kirkman

    Karol-An Kirkman Director of Education


    Karol-An Kirkman has 27 years of primary teaching experience and is a master of the 11 plus entrance. Karol-An was previously Academic Head at Finton House, one of South West London’s leading Preparatory schools, where she helped hundreds of children of all abilities prepare for their transition from primary to secondary school. She developed their 11 plus programme over many years, developing close relationships with the main independent schools in London and the South East. All of this experience makes Karol-An Mentor’s 11+ expert. In her spare time, Karol-An can be found at her daughter's puppet workshop! Karol-An also has 3 cute cats called Dora, Minnie and Tabitha.

  • Hannah Larsen

    Hannah Larsen Head of Marketing


    Hannah graduated from the University of Greenwich with a degree in Public Relations and Communications. After leaving university Hannah went on to work for James Allen’s Girls' School. Hannah has always loved being in education and feels passionate about the importance of giving children the best education possible, Hannah believes this is what Mentor has to offer. Having grown up on the Cornish coast Hannah loves the sea and can be found catching waves on her visits home. Hannah can also be found most weekends at festivals, concerts or throwing shapes on the dancefloors of London, making her a great candidate for organising the Mentor Christmas party!

  • Chilla Knight

    Chilla Knight Head of Partnerships – A-level Specialist


    Chilla started out at North London Collegiate School and then she went onto study A-levels at Westminster. After her time in secondary education, Chilla went on to study English and Italian at the University of Oxford, which included a year abroad in Rome, where she saw lots of art and ate lots of pasta! She then went on to scoop up a Masters in Art History from The Courtauld Institute of Art. Chilla understands what it takes to be an excellent tutor as she has been a private tutor for almost 3 years. She specialises in helping children to pass their 11+ and helps teenagers pass their A-levels, making her the tutoring guru of the team! In her spare time, Chilla enjoys visiting art museums and exhibitions. When not at museums or looking at art, Chilla can be found in the swimming pool or scoring goals on the football pitch!

  • Juuli Rossi

    Juuli Rossi Head of Tuition – GCSE Specialist


    After becoming a fully qualified teacher, Juuli moved from her homeland Finland to Berlin for 6 years where she taught English and German at an international school. She then 2 years ago decided to move to London, where she joined Mentor. Juuli is enthusiastic about supporting children, and their families, with their learning in a way best suited for the needs of the individual child. Juuli is also the most efficient member of the Mentor team! In her spare time, Juuli loves to sing and has sung in various choirs and acapella groups. She is also enjoys lots of art from calligraphy to water colouring and movies (particularly Zombie themed ones!) Juuli of course loves all the things that remind her of Finland, so she loves salty liquorice, Moomins, sauna and of course cinnamon buns.

  • Rachel Arbuckle

    Rachel Arbuckle 11 Plus Consultant


    Rachel has been part of Mentor for the past three years and heads up the 11+ team. As the 11+ client manager she advises and supports families throughout their journey. She has a great knowledge of the London schools, in particular, how to successfully transition from the state sector to the Independent School. Rachel loves talking to parents and will always offer oodles of pragmatic advice to help plan a stress-free 11+ schedule. Rachel is Mentors 11 plus guru. She is mum to teenage boys Sam and Finton, and our office dog Gilbert. Prior to joining Mentor, she ran a Photography and Production Agency where she travelled extensively. Outside of work she loves vintage fairs and collects timeless and beautiful pieces.

  • Maddy Banner

    Maddy Banner 11 Plus Specialist


    Maddy is Wandsworth born and raised meaning she is an expert on all things South London. She is also an expert on the 11 plus. She herself made the transition from Beatrix Potter to James Allen’s Girls’ School. With deep expertise in CEM, GL, and individual schools’ assessment approaches, she is able to advise on how to best prepare your child for how to get into the right senior school. Making her Mentors experiences advisor. In her spare time Maddy can be found lifting weights and making gains. When not picking up heavy objects she enjoys making texturises and jewellery, Maddy is also a keen photographer.

Meet the team: (Left to Right) Rachel Arbuckle, Karol-An Kirkman, Maddy Banner, Mary Lonsdale, Hannah Larsen, Chilla Knight