One of the sons of Arthur Phillips Woods and his wife Katherine Isabella Woods, he was educated at Cordwalles Preparatory School, Natal, Michaelhouse, Natal, Rhodes University, where he graduated BA (first class Honours) in History, MA and UED, and at the University of Oxford, where he took his degree of DPhil.
A Cape Province Rhodes Scholar in 1968, in 1971 he was appointed an assistant master at Felsted School, Essex, England, where he became Head of History four years later. He was Headmaster of Gresham's School, Holt, from 1982 to 1985 and then Head of History at Trent College, Derbyshire, from 1985 to 2004.
He is the brother of Dr David Randle Woods, Vice-Chancellor of Rhodes University from 1996 to 2006.
- WOODS, Timothy Phillips MA, DPhil in Who's Who 2007 (London, A. & C. Black, 2007)
- Rhodos May 2006, page 6, citation by Professor Pat Terry dated 8 April 2006
- Woods, Dr Tim, 'Robert Roseveare' in The Times (London) dated January 18, 2005, p. 52
- WOODS, Dr David Randle DPhil; FRSSAf in Who's Who 2007 (London, A. & C. Black, 2007)