Meet the trustees

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The Board establishes the overall vision and governance framework for WHAT. Each Trustee is selected for their expertise and influence.

Simon Kearey

Simon Kearey

A qualified accountant, with over 30 years senior leadership experience across all sectors, Simon was appointed Chair of Trustees in April 2013. He is a trustee and chairman of a number of local and national organisations, specialising in business transformation and turnaround. Simon is keen to ensure that the Trust opens up the exciting world of Heritage and Arts to the wider community, working collaboratively with many local organisations. Simon is also very much involved in the world of education and childrens’ services, seeking to provide children and young people with the best start in life and believes the Trust has a very large part to play in this locally.

Paul Meek

A senior director with over 20 years’ experience in the UK and international markets, experienced in IT programme and project management, procurement, consultancy, marketing and out-sourcing. Holds Certificate of IT Service Management (ITIL) and PRINCE practitioner.

Excellent negotiator responsible for drafting Ts & Cs including SLA and successfully concluding multi-million pound ICT contracts. Director of a management consultancy company specialising in the implementation of business change through the intelligent use of IT. Expert witness in several IT related cases. Excellent communication and relationship skills. Resourceful, self-motivated, energetic, organised, flexible and used to working under pressure.

Auriol Pettit

Auriol is a commercial consultant with 20 years experience in the catering/hospitality and building management industries.  She has worked previously within the Museum and Leisure sectors.  Auriol is passionate about food and service and the role that these facilities play in supporting the visitor experience.  She has been on the board of trustees for 2 years plus - helping with the transition of the Museum to management directly by the trust.

Current focus is developing the commercial activities of the Museum to help develop a sustainable future for this wonderful local resource.  As a mother of young twin boys, Auriol is also keen to develop the Museum as a family attraction with year-round appeal.

Jenny Baker


After a life-long career as a senior manager in the voluntary sector, Jenny retired recently after six years as Chief Executive of the national charity, Brain Tumour UK.  Previously working for over thirty years for the National Trust, ultimately as its national lead on volunteering, community involvement and diversity, in 2005, Jenny was awarded the OBE in recognition of her services to voluntary action in the heritage and environmental sectors.  Jenny is a national Committee member of Healthwatch England and Chair of Healthwatch Bucks. She is also a Trustee of Community Impact Bucks and her past Board experience for two national charities was with The Churches Conservation Trust and Volunteering England.  These have all  brought insight into the services provided by charities and community groups and the difference their efforts can make to people’s lives and wellbeing.

Tony Green

Tony Green

Tony has been a councillor for over 30 years, first with the London Borough of Lambeth and then since 1999 with Wycombe District Council. In 2013-14 he was Mayor of High Wycombe. He is the Council's representative on WHAT and is also a member of the management board of Wycombe Community Arts Centre. He is chairman of the High Wycombe Town Twinning Association and vice chairman of the High Wycombe branch of the Royal British Legion.

Tony is a governor at Highworth Combined School and Nursery and Holmer Green Senior School.

Ed Gemmell

Ed is a sales and marketing expert who was originally trained as lawyer.

Director of Style Media UK which is the pre-eminent real li fe Word of Mouth marketing agency generating millions of conversations for top fmcg companies such as Unilever and Nestle. Ed lives in Hazlemere, plays hockey for Wycombe
hockey club and is a frequent visitor to the Museum with his family.

Mark Bilsborough

Mark has a strong education and charity background. He worked in Malawi for the water charity Pump Aid and Chairs the TESS education charity, supporting secondary education in Uganda. He previously sat on the Board of Museums, Libraries and Archives South East (MLA South East).

As a Senior Civil Servant, he developed policy and advised
UK Ministers on education, training and development issues. He is also a qualified English teacher, working in schools and colleges and for a UK examining board.

Keith Ray

Although educated as an engineer, Keith has spent his entire career as a management consultant, firstly with local government, then in a general ‘retail’ consultancy, and finally 26 years running the internal consultancy within a major international food company. Since retiring ten years ago, he has continued to keep his hand in as a freelance consultant, but has also developed his life long interest in industrial and technological history, writing a monthly history article for Marine Engineers Review, and writing a number of books on the history of land and air transport. He is self confessed ‘petrol head’ and ‘Cornwall-phile’, and a Trustee of Mid-Thames & Buckinghamshire Relate,