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The woman chosen to lead Cromer High has outlined her aim to make it “the school to go to in North Norfolk”.

Penny Bignell will become the school’s first woman headteacher when she takes the helm in September - succeeding Glyn Hambling, who is becoming head at Northgate High in Dereham.

Mrs Bignell, 39, is currently vice-principal at the 1,800-pupil Thorpe St Andrew School, near Norwich, where she is responsible for teaching and learning and continuing professional development.

But she said she was “keen to work in a smaller, community school”, and added: “I’m delighted to have the opportunity to lead such a good school and I’m really looking forward to working with the people involved.”

She said her aim for the school, currently Ofsted-rated good with outstanding features, was to “make it even better”.

She added: “I want it to be an outstanding school for the community, and I want to work closely with the primary schools and the younger children to show them how good Cromer High School is.

“The challenge is to make it the school to go to in North Norfolk.”

Mrs Bignell worked for 10 years at Costessey High School, now Ormiston Victory Academy, where she began her career as a geography teacher.

She had a spell running a family restaurant in Essex, and most recently was assistant principal at Thorpe St Andrew for two years and vice-principal for five-and-a-half years.

She is married to Matthew, and they have a five-year-old daughter, Thea.

David Fincham, chairman of the governors at Cromer High, said: “We are pleased to have appointed Penny Bignell as headteacher of our school.

“She was the unanimous choice of governors after undergoing a rigorous two-day selection process alongside four other candidates.

“Her knowledge, experience and skills will enable her to lead the school into a new era and build on the outstanding progress already made.

“We are all looking forward to working with her from September.”

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