Welcome to Our New Trustees
In our first issue we would like to welcome four New Trustees to Ottery Help Scheme. They have each been kind enough to provide a brief pen portrait, allowing us to get to know them a little better...
I have lived in East Devon for most of my life so far. My family home was in Sidmouth, and I attended the Kings School in Ottery St Mary.
I worked in the Midland Bank in Sidmouth for five years before we started our family. I married a local man from Talaton, an engineer and a passionate sports man. We settled in Ottery and have lived here ever since.
I became aware of the Help Scheme many years ago through Dr Graham Ward and Dr Jeremy Bradshaw Smith, while working at the local Doctors surgery in Ottery. I joined the Practice part time as a Receptionist in 1982 and later that year the Practice re-located to their new premises at the Coleridge Medical Centre.
In 1989 I became Practice Manager, a role I thoroughly enjoyed until my retirement in 2012. As Manager I worked closely with the Help Scheme and co-ordinator Pat Lane and some of her successors. I have been proud to support and promote the achievements and development of the Help Scheme, and took every opportunity to promote its good work with other GP Practices. On retirement I became a Help Scheme Volunteer in order to maintain my involvement with Patient Health and Care.
I am privileged to act as a Trustee for the Help Scheme which provides such an invaluable service for our local community.
My wife and I retired to Devon nine years ago. A working life in the electronics industry revolved around airports, flying around the world selling integrated circuits to Japan, Taiwan, Australia, South Africa, Singapore, Hong Kong, all over Europe and the US. It gave me little time to give back anything to the areas and people where I lived. I made the commitment when I moved to Tipton to change that.
Within nine months of arriving I became a Parish Councillor for Tipton St John and did two terms as a Councillor.
Another key committee I sat on was the Finance and General Purposes Committee and in my last year at the Council I was Chairman of that Committee and hence Council Treasurer. Responsible for funding, and leading numerous beneficial projects for Ottery, I also used my funding knowledge to advise local groups, achieving several useful outcomes.
In May this year I did not apply to be re-elected as a Parish Councillor - I needed time to work on my own projects - yet I still wish to give time to outside projects albeit not with the intensity I had at the Council.
I believe that working as a Trustee for the Ottery Help Scheme does that. I have the experience of finance and funding and would be pleased to use that knowledge for such a good purpose.
I have lived in the Ottery area since 1981. I was a Teacher at Clyst Vale Community College, Broadclyst for 29 years (teaching Geography, being Head of Year and also Assistant Principal) and subsequently Clerk to Ottery St Mary Town Council for 8½ years, retiring last June.
As teacher I organised and led a successful school handbell ringing team which performed in venues all over England and which, as a result of considerable fund-raising, I took on 3 occasions to America and Canada.
As Town Clerk I was responsible for advising the Council and effecting the decisions it made as well as administering its services and properties. I am married to Wilfred, a retired Police Officer. I am Choir Director and a bell ringer at Ottery St Mary Parish Church.
I moved to Ottery in 2013, following retirement, with my wife and purchased Seasons Tea Rooms in the town to keep both of us active.
During the main part of my working life I worked in the gaming industry with various responsibilities covering internal audit, security, insurance premium/claim negotiations, fleet management, health and safety, licensing, general compliance including being the Data Control Officer.
During our albeit short time in Ottery we have been made to feel extremely welcome by and all and I felt that I would like to repay in some small way the kindness shown to us.
I am now, in addition to being a Trustee of the Ottery Help Scheme, also a Trustee of the Station Project and endeavouring to, in my small way, assist in continuing the fantastic work already being undertaken within the community and, where possible, make improvements for the benefit of all.