Deputy Lieutenants on the Active List:
Valerie Allen MBE, JP,DL
Val lives in Warrington and runs an engineering business in Widnes. She is Chair of Halton Chamber of Commerce and Enterprise, and Vice-Chair of Riverside College in Widnes. Currently Val is President of the Charity Compassion in Action and was previously a founder member of the NSPCC Business Board. She enjoys walking and visiting National Trust heritage sites around the country.
Rob Barrow MBE, DL
Rob has a degree in computer sciences and was Founder Chairman and CEO of one of the few UK software companies to reach the FTSE250. He was also a non-executive director of various investment trusts. Since retiring over 15 years ago, he became involved in charity and horticulture. He is a trustee, and ex chair, of East Cheshire Hospice, President of The Congleton4Congleton Fund, and a vice president of the Cheshire Community Foundation. An ex-Governor of King’s School, Macclesfield, he supports horticultural charities, including Perennial, the Gardeners Royal Benevolent Society, and is a Patron of the National Trust. He is married to Pam, who is a Fellow of both the RHS and Perennial, and they have a married daughter, Fiona, and grandchildren Kit and Laurie in Cirencester
Sarah Callander Beckett DL
Sarah is the owner of Combermere Abbey Estate in South Cheshire and operates a diverse commercial operation which includes farming, tourism and events business. Her other interests and activities are Historic Houses (Board Member); Country Landowners’ Association Cheshire (past board member); Cheshire Community Foundation (Trustee); Cheshire Leader (board member). She is a past High Sheriff of Cheshire.
Mark Cashin QFSM, DL
Mark lives in Moore in Halton. He served in the Fire Service for 33 years finishing his career as Chief Fire Officer and Chief Executive of Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service. He was awarded the Queens Fire Service Medal in the 2020 Birthday Honours.
Mark spent a lot of his career working with youth organisations and was the Chair of the Fire Service Prince’s Trust Association for over a decade. He has a long history of leading national public safety campaigns, some of them resulting in changes to the law.
Mark supports several charities and is a Trustee of the charity Classrooms in the Clouds.
Moira Chapman MBE, JP, DL
Moira lives in Weaverham and is a retired Public Health Specialist. Over years she served on a number of public bodies including Cheshire County Council and Cheshire Police Authority. Moira is currently Chairman of the Russett Learning Trust, a Multi Academy Trust meeting needs of children with learning disabilities. She recently retired as a magistrate after 33 years’ service and is becoming a volunteer with Youth Justice Service.
Jamie Christon DL
Jamie lives in Chester and is a keen supporter of the development of the City and Borough. He has been Chief Executive of Chester Zoo since 2021.
Jamie is responsible for the delivery of the Zoo’s strategy which has included the development of Islands which opened in 2015, and more recent commercial developments such as Oakfield Pub, The Square Wedding Venue, Heart of Africa and The Reserve Hotel. He is also leading work to ensure the resilience of the Zoo operation into the future as a major conservation education charity and visitor attraction.
Kathy Cowell OBE, DL
Kathy is a resident of Wilmslow, a banker by profession. Since 1991 Kathy has been a Non-Executive Director in the NHS, currently Chairman of Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust which operates the 10 hospitals across Manchester. Kathy is Chair of the Hammond School in Chester and TLC, a service company based in Stockport. With a passion for the community of Cheshire she has served on the boards of Cheshire Young Carers, Cheshire Community Foundation and Active Cheshire. She is a past High Sheriff of Cheshire.
Lord Daresbury DL
Peter Daresbury has held numerous positions, including CEO from 1993 to 2000 and Chairman from 2000 to 2006 of the FTSE 100 Company, The Greenalls Group plc. Peter was also Chairman of Aintree Racecourse for 25 years, where in his riding days he rode in the Grand National in 1975 and won the Liverpool Foxhunters in 1982 and subsequently, Haydock Racecourse, where he had a connection for many years as a Jockey, a Steward and as a Sponsor. He is also a Director/Chairman of a diverse number of companies. He lives with his wife Clare, on their estate near Malpas
Meredydd David OBE, DL
Meredydd lives near Nantwich and was the Principal of Reaseheath College for 14 years. Since retiring from that role in the summer of 2018 he has been a Deputy Commissioner for Further Education in England. He has also been a member of the Local Enterprise Partnership Board, Chair of the Rural Strategy Board for Cheshire and a board member of the Association of Colleges. Meredydd’s favourite pastime is chasing his four grandsons around and mountain walking particularly in the Snowdonia range.
Robert Davis DL
Robert is an active member of the Cheshire business community. He is a member of the Local Enterprise Partnership, sitting on the Strategy Committee and Chairing its R&A Committee. He is the founder of the Cheshire Energy Hub and the Energy Innovation Centre, both nationally recognised as leading organisations in the energy field. His day jobs are as Chair and Group CEO of EA Technology, Chair of Mersey Dee Energy and Non-Executive Director of the Energy Systems Catapult. He has an ambition for Cheshire to see the fastest reduction in carbon of any county in the UK.
Dennis Dunn MBE, JP, DL
Dennis is High Sheriff of Cheshire 2023/24. He is former Pro Vice Chancellor and Dean at the Manchester Metropolitan University and Chairman of the BITWorld international conference series. A former Magistrates Bench Chairman, he has held numerous directorships in the commercial and public sectors. His current positions include Chairman of the Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and a national Trustee serving on the Board of the British Red Cross.
Mark Ellis, DL
Mark lives at Carden near Malpas. He was a partner at commercial law firm Aaron & Partners for ten years and in 2004 founded employment law and safety support business Ellis Whittam. In 2012 Mark co-founded the charity Cheshire Connect; Cheshire Connect supports many Cheshire charities, religious and voluntary organisations with the provision of professional skills, donated free of charge by participating businesses and business people. He is a keen cyclist, tennis player, windsurfer and gardener.
Steven Everett, DL
Steven has lived in Cheshire since 1983. In that time he has worked as a Prosecuting Solicitor based in Chester and as a Crown Prosecutor with the Crown Prosecution Service serving Cheshire and North Wales. In 1989 he transferred to the Bar and practised as a barrister from chambers in Chester and in 2007 he was appointed as a Circuit Judge before taking up a full-time appointment as the Resident Judge at Chester in 2018. As the Resident Judge and the Honorary Recorder of Chester, Steven is the lead judge responsible for the administration of justice in the Crown Courts throughout the county. Since his appointment as the Resident Judge he was delighted to be invited to be the Honorary President of the Cheshire Magistrates’ Association. He has also sat on the Parole Board and been appointed to active positions with Her Majesty’s Council of Circuit Judges (currently as the Honorary Treasurer) and as a course director and tutor judge with the Judicial College (training other judges on legal matters).
Naser Fouad DL
Dr Naser Fouad has over two decades of experience in the healthcare sector, recognised for his significant contribution to the field of neurology. He built his first Hospital in 2006 and subsequently opened 3 specialist hospitals in Warrington, Chester and Oldham. Awarded EY Entrepreneur of the Year 2016, he has founded a number of successful business ventures both in the UK and overseas. He is dedicated to a wide range of charitable activities, including the establishment of health centres in some of the most deprived areas of the world – he also works closely with Warrington Disability Partnership. Naser lives in Bowdon with his wife and two sons.
Christine Gaskell CBE, DL
Christine was on the Board of Bentley Motors for 18 years. She was Chair of Cheshire and Warrington Local Enterprise Partnership for 9 years and stepped down in 2020. Christine is currently Vice Chair of the Royal Automobile Club. In 2012 she was awarded an MBE for services to skills and apprenticeships and in 2019 a CBE for services to the Cheshire economy.
Mark Greaves DL
Mark is the former Managing Director of Flowcrete Group plc based in Sandbach, and former President of the global construction chemicals business of RPM International inc. Mark is currently a Director of Mannings Brewers and the Wild & Wild vegan restaurant, both based in Congleton. He is Vice President of Foden’s Brass Band, Ambassador for East Cheshire Hospice@Home, former Chair and now a Patron of Active Cheshire, Director of Congleton RUFC and a founding partner of the Cheshire Community Foundation. Mark Enjoys Rugby, Golf, Nordic Walking and Literature
Clare Hayward MBE, DL
Clare Hayward lives in Macclesfield. She is the Director of Cirrus – a leadership, engagement and talent consultancy firm based in Wilmslow, with offices in London and Melbourne. She is the Chair of the Cheshire and Warrington Local Enterprise Partnership and the Chair of the Employer Skills Board. She is also an Ambassador for East Cheshire Hospice and supports a number of other charities across Cheshire.
Eric Hodgson JP, DL
Eric lives in Oakmere and is a Cheshire magistrate and recent Chairman of the Cheshire Bench. He has undertaken the following roles: Chairman of Arena Options Housing Association, Chief Executive of NHS general hospitals and mental health trusts, Governor of Warrington Collegiate Further Education College and Chairman of Oakmere Parish Council.
Bill Holroyd CBE, DL
Originally from Cumbria but a long-term resident of Cheshire, Bill is involved in multiple business ventures and founded the charity OnSide Youth Zones. Bill is a keen vintage and classic rally driver, and is a past High Sheriff of Cheshire.
David Maisey OBE, DL
David is the CEO and co-founder of multiple award-winning, Warrington-based ICC Solutions, helping his clients in over 100 countries to implement secure payments such as Chip & PIN. He is a Northern Powerhouse Export Champion, Export Ambassador for the Cheshire Institute of Directors, and a Founder Patron of the Warrington Youth Zone. He is an established supporter of The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, also providing export education to participants, and the Chairman of the Cheshire Commonwealth Association.
Robert Mee DL
Robert lives near Chester and following a long career in Financial Services, he now has a number of Voluntary Economic and Charity roles. He is a Board Member of the Cheshire and Warrington Local Enterprise Board where he Chairs the Strategy Committee, and is also Chair of the Cheshire Science Corridor Enterprise Zone Board. He is Chair of the Chester based, Hospice of the Good Shepherd and is a Trustee of Cheshire Young Carers. Robert is a past High Sheriff of Cheshire.
Mark Mitchell DL
Mark is Cheshire born and bred and lives with his wife, Anita, in Willaston in the west of the County. He has served as High Sheriff of Cheshire and owns and leads a retail automotive business representing Lexus, Mazda and Skoda based at Cheshire Oaks. Mark has a passion for “all things Cheshire” and makes time for his role as Director at Chester Cathedral and his involvement with Trussell Trust Foodbanks, CAP Debt Counselling Centres.
Brigadier (Retd) Tom O’Brien CBE, TD, DL, VR
Tom is a resident of Macclesfield. Tom served for 42 years in the Army Reserve and is currently the Vice-Chair of the Reserves Forces and Cadets Association, Executive Chairman of Broughton House – a home for ex-service Personnel, and member of the East Cheshire Army Benevolent Fund. By profession he is a technologist and businessman and is currently the Chief Executive of the Services Family, a military financial services business for the UK’s Armed Forces. In his spare time he enjoys running, scuba diving and wine – good stuff when he can get it!
Lynn Pegler DL
Lynn is Festival Manager of the Weaver Words Literature Festival in Frodsham, Vice Chair of Halton Chamber of Commerce, governor of Riverside College and Trustee of Norton Priory. She now runs public relations consultancy Pegler Communications following a career as a newspaper journalist and communications manager roles with the British Army, central government and British Waterways. She takes an active role in the arts and is an award-winning director and playwright with Kingsley Players, a published poet and plays violin in a local orchestra.
Graham Phillips MBE, DL
Graham is County Commissioner for Cheshire Scouts and CEO at Cheshire Young Carers. Before retirement he ran a number of successful businesses and is a passionate supporter of young people and the SME (Small and Medium Enterprises) sector.
Howard Platt DL
Howard is chair of Cheshire Community Foundation and chair of The Challenge Academy Trust which consists of 10 Warrington schools educating over 8,000 learners. Howard and his wife Wendy jointly founded Lymm Heritage Centre and open their garden at Laskey Farm each year under the National Garden Scheme. Howard is a North West Business Angel and VP of Lymm Rugby Club
David Pollock DL
David is a North Rode resident, and is Founder Chairman of Chess, named after his two eldest children Charlie and Jessica. Chess is a Business Connectivity, Digital, IT & Cyber Security specialist with 11 years in the Sunday Times 100 Best UK Companies to Work For, making it to #1 in 2018. He chaired The Prince’s Trust NW Development Committee for 10 years, is a Vice President of East Cheshire Hospice and a former Trustee of Active Cheshire. He is a keen adventure cyclist and wilderness trekker to Bhutan, Costa Rica, Peru, Patagonia also summiting Mont Blanc and Kilimanjaro.
Chris Purslow DL
Chris lives in Thelwall and is a Founding Director of four successful start-up engineering companies. He is a Founder Patron and Deputy Chair of Warrington Youth Zone and Chair of Warrington Impact Group. He is Trustee of several charities leading church growth. Chris is passionate to help the poor and vulnerable in Cheshire by joined-up action and prevention over cure. He finds looking after his two grandchildren more exhausting than his slow triathlons and mountaineering exploits.
Angela Robinson DL
Angie Robinson has lived in Cheshire for over 40 years and was a Director and Chair of Marketing Cheshire for several years. A former CEO who has held many Board positions, she is now semi-retired and acts as a mentor for Expert Insight, a company that supports the development of social enterprises. She is a Trustee of Lyme Green Settlement in Macclesfield. Angie lives near Knutsford and is a very busy Grandmother.
Jennifer Roulston-Parry DL
Jennifer lives in Sandymoor, Runcorn. She is a solicitor. She is a trustee at St. Roccos Hospice and the FDR Foundation, and is a founder member of the Warrington Business Awards.
Susan Sellers DL
Susan has over 20 years of Board level experience in the NHS as well as being a former National Chairman of The Arts Society. She lives near Tarporley and is a Patron of Tarporley War Memorial Hospital, Vice President of the Royal British Legion Cheshire County and a trustee of both Active Cheshire and Cheshire Crimebeat. She is a past High Sheriff of Cheshire.
Zoe Sheppard DL
Zoe runs Cheshire Community Foundation, connecting people who want to give back, with the most effective local charities in Cheshire and Warrington, helping those most in need.
Major General Keith Skempton CBE, DL
Born in Chester, Keith served with the Cheshire Regiment including command on operations. On the General Staff, he was responsible for major logistic deployments in Africa, The Middle East and the Balkans. He is President of SSAFA Cheshire, Chair of the Chester Cathedral Garden of Remembrance Trust, Vice President of the Cheshire Regimental Association and an active supporter of the Military Museum at Chester Castle.
Sir Robin Spencer DL
Sir Robin lives in Chester. He retired in 2023 as a High Court Judge but continues to sit in the Court of Appeal (Criminal Division). Cheshire born and bred, Sir Robin practised as a barrister in Chester chambers from 1978 to 1999 and subsequently as a QC continued to work mainly on the Wales and Chester Circuit, becoming Leader of the Circuit from 2004-2006.
He started sitting as a part time judge in 1994, and was knighted on appointment to the High Court in 2010. He was a Presiding Judge on the South-Eastern Circuit from 2013 to 2017.
Sir Robin supported his wife Julia in her career in Special Education in Cheshire both as a teacher and an Early Years Adviser. Julia is a trustee of the Makaton charity and led the bid to make Chester a Makaton friendly city.
Sir Robin and Julia have three daughters and five grandchildren who keep them busy.
David Thompson MBE, DL
A Warrington resident, co-founder and Chief Executive of Warrington Disability Partnership, Dave had a 20-year career in senior management in the NHS until semi-retirement in 2015. He is the founder and event Co-ordinator of the Disability Awareness Day. He is a Trustee (Non-Executive Director) of the Halton based Ella Together Performance Group, ex-Trustee and now Patron at the Tim Parry and Jonathan Ball Foundation for Peace, a Patron at Warrington Sea Cadets, Governor at the Expanse Learning Group and Honorary President at the Cheshire Police Museum. Dave is campaigner for disability equality and human rights, a keen Scuba Diver and avid supporter of Warrington Wolves RLFC.
Brigadier John Thomson OBE, QVRM, TD, DL
James Timpson OBE, DL
James lives near Chester and runs his family business Timpson, trading from over 2100 shops across the UK and Ireland. James is also Chair of the Prison Reform Trust and a Trustee of Tate.
Eleanor Underhill DL
Eleanor has worked extensively across Cheshire during her career, which involved senior leadership positions in local newspapers, and then with the National Trust. Now recently retired, she operates as a freelance training and development consultant for the National Trust, and is also a Director of Marketing Cheshire. She is actively involved in various sporting and musical groups in the county, and enjoys spending time with her family, especially her two young grandchildren.
Sandra Verity JP, DL
Sandra has lived and worked in Cheshire for over 30 years. Having run a marketing business and brought up her family, she now increasingly spends her time involved in the community. She sits on the Board of the University of Chester and The Kings School Chester, is a Trustee of Cheshire Connect and The Chester Clergy Charitable Trust as well as volunteering at Bridge Wellness Gardens and sitting as a Magistrate.
Joëlle Warren MBE, DL
Joëlle was appointed Vice Lord-Lieutenant of Cheshire in 2010 and the Founding Chair of Cheshire Community Foundation in 2011 a post she held until 2019 when she was appointed by the Prime Minister as Chair of the Crown Nominations Commission to appoint the new Archbishop of York. She is widely known in the North West business community as Executive Chair of Warren Partners, the Cheshire-headquartered executive search firm and as a member of the North West Business Leadership Team. She serves on the CBI’s SME Council and received an MBE in 2016 for Services to Business. With her husband, Andrew, Joëlle is heavily involved in the local church and they love to travel, ski, climb mountains and spend time with family and friends.
The Duke of Westminster DL
Professor Tim Wheeler DL
Tim lives in Frodsham and was the foundation Vice-Chancellor and Principal of the University of Chester for 22 years retiring in 2019. By profession, he is a psychologist and statistician. He was also a member and more recently Deputy Chair of the Local Enterprise Partnership Board for nine years until March 2020. He is a lay Canon of Chester Cathedral, Freeman of the Cities of London and Chester and has had extensive UK and international experience as a researcher in dyslexia.
Kathy Whitaker DL
Katherine has lived and worked in Cheshire for 25 years. After a successful career in IT and bringing up her family, she now owns and works within her own property development businesses. Working within the community, she has been a Trustee for the Tim Parry Jonathan Ball Peace Foundation. She became a Justice of the Peace in 2009 and is a Member of the Cheshire & Merseyside Advisory Committee for Magistrates Courts where she has led innovative work in developing new ways of raising awareness to attract new applicants to the Magistracy.
Paula Williams DL
Paula lives in Runcorn and until recently was an Assistant Executive Director (Culture and Communities) for Knowsley Council. She has always worked in culture and communities with over 30 years working for the public sector and, prior to that, working for the community and voluntary sector, again using culture to engage, inspire and connect people.
She has held a number of roles on Boards and Advisory Boards including as a Director with Volair in Knowsley and as Advisory Board Member for the Culture in Libraries Hub in St Helens. Throughout her career, Paula has worked in various multi-agency partnerships and been fortunate to be part of exciting initiatives and projects where communities, people and places can flourish and shine. This has included Shakespeare North Playhouse and the Liverpool City Region’s “Borough of Culture”.
David Wootton CBE, DL
David lives near Nantwich. He has over 40 years experience in education in a variety of roles across the UK – he has been Chief Executive of one of the highest performing school groups in the country, was also an Adviser to the Department for Education and served on Ministerial working groups. He was awarded a CBE in the 2021 Queens New Year’s Honours List for Service to Education.
David is presently a consultant adviser working across the educational landscape with a focus on governance, strategy and leadership, and writing and speaking at events and conferences. He is a Life Fellow of the Royal Society for the Arts and a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Educators (City of London) and Visiting Professor in Education at Manchester Metropolitan University.
David’s focus presently is significantly on community activities in Cheshire, working with charities, and he is a Trustee of Cheshire Community Foundation and Chester Zoo and Chair of the largest schools Trust in Cheshire.