This section provides brief biographical information on the Honourable Company’s main officers. With the exception of the Warden Emeritus and the Clerk, the incumbents change each year. Thus when the Hon Hugh Tollemache took over from Anne Chambers as Warden on 12 May 2016, Sir Dusty Miller was elevated to Assistant Warden and Helen Lovatt became Junior Warden.
Air Marshal Sir Dusty Miller joined the Royal Air Force in 1967 and initially completed a 2-year apprenticeship qualifying as an airframe fitter. He went on to become a pilot flying the Jet Provost, Hunter, Jaguar and Tornado; he was a flying instructor on the Jet Provost and Hunter, and a weapons instructor on the Hunter and Jaguar. His has served in the Ministry of Defence, attended the Joint Services Defence College, Greenwich and undertaken operational command with NATO in Sarajevo acted as Air Component Commander for UK Forces in Afghanistan, where he was awarded the CBE. He has also served as head of Royal Air Force training subsequently head of Royal Air Force personnel and career management. He was knighted in the New Year’s Honours List 2007 and retired in 2008 after serving as Deputy Commander of the NATO Headquarters in Naples . He now holds a commission as a flying officer in the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve (Training). He is the National President of the Royal Air Forces Association, Branch President of the Cheltenham Royal Air Forces Association, President of the Air Power Association, Vice-Patron of the Royal Air Force Halton Apprentices Association, Patron of the Central Flying School Association, Honorary President of the Tangmere Military Aviation Museum, Honorary President of 125 (Cheltenham) Squadron Air Training Corps, and is a member of the Gordonstoun School Board of Governors and the Finance & Estates Committee. He is Patron of ‘Turn to Starboard’, a sailing charity for recovering wounded injured or sick armed forces veterans. His leisure pursuits include offshore sailing and holds the RYA Yachtmaster qualification. He is Chair of the Honourable Company’s Armed Forces Interest Group.
Helen Lovatt retired as a solicitor in 2010 after practising in Gloucestershire for over 25 years. Whilst her legal specialism was in corporate finance, in her final role as a partner, she managed the firm’s business development and marketing. Helen now offers consultancy services to early stage businesses including angel investment and mentoring. She is also a non-executive director of family business, Blue Sheep LLP. Her volunteering started with the PTA at her children’s school and has included being a Parent Governor at Pate’s Grammar School, a Governor at Gloucestershire College and member of the Appeals Board at the National Star College. Helen is now a Trustee of Gloucestershire Community Foundation. Her interests include walking, skiing and travel. Helen chairs the Community Support Group.
A veterinary surgeon and graduate of the University of Bristol, Professor Chris Gaskell worked as an academic clinician (companion animals), and latterly in an administrative role, at the Universities of Pennsylvania, Bristol and Liverpool. He retired in 2016 after nine years as Vice-Chancellor of The Royal Agricultural University, Cirencester. He is currently a member of the Chief Scientist for Wales’ Science Advisory Council and the Welsh bTB Eradication Programme Advisory Group. He has previously served as Chairman of Defra’s Chief Scientific Advisor’s Science Advisory Council and a member of the Government Chief Scientist’s Food Research Partnership; he currently chairs the Research Advisory Group for DEFRA’s Sustainable Intensification Programme. He is a member of the Council of the Royal Agricultural Society of England and an Associate Member of the Royal Agricultural Societies of England. He was previously a member of the Council of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, the Board of UCEA (the University and College’s Employers Association) and Vice-Chair of GuildHE, the representative body for specialist universities. He is a Governor-elect of the University of Winchester, and is an adviser to Applied Inspiration, a company providing advice on student recruitment, widening participation, and careers. Chris somehow also finds time to chair the Business Group.
Eton College, Royal Agricultural College, Scots Guards. M/D Colesbourne Estate Company and associated companies each engaged in Farming, forestry, property, motor trade & snowdrop garden. Rural District Council (1959-74), County Council (1970-92 Chairman/Vice-Chairman 10 years). High Sheriff (1979/80), HM Lord-Lieutenant (1992-2010), Knight Commander of the Victorian Order (2009). Hon. Dr. Phil. University of Gloucestershire, Hon. Dr. Laws University of West of England, Hon Fellow Royal Agricultural University. President Gloucestershire Country Landowners Assn. (2005-), Regional Director Lloyds Bank (1985-91), Member Judicial Appointments Board (1994-2000), President Gloucestershire Reserve Forces & Cadets Assn (1992-2010), Twenty years Chairman Prince’s Trust Gloucestershire and Prince’s Youth Business Trust, Liveryman Worshipful Company of Gardeners, Initiator of Honourable Company of Gloucestershire and been associated as Patron, President or member of more than 20 County voluntary societies.
Air Marshal ‘Black’ Robertson joined the RAF in 1963. After three years at the RAF College Cranwell he spent the next 32 years in flying, staff and command appointments, including tours of duty in the USA and Germany. He flew all the RAF’s front line aircraft and also qualified as a helicopter pilot. The air marshal then spent some 5 years with British Aerospace, which subsequently became BAE Systems, before setting up his own defence/aviation consultancy. He has acted as Clerk and Company Secretary to The Honourable Company of Gloucestershire since 2013. His interests include field sports, winter sports, sailing and the arts.
Nick Broady is MD of the Avenue Group, founded in 1988 as Avenue Cars of Gloucester Ltd it has since expanded with Gloucester Coating Ltd and a commercial property portfolio. A founding member of the Honourable Company of Gloucestershire, he chairs the Sports Group, which is always looking to help and support sport locally. He is also the Chairman of the Pied Piper Appeal here in Gloucestershire, based at the Gloucestershire Royal Hospital. The Pied Piper Appeal raises funds for sick and disabled children across the county. Nick is a keen sportsman and golfer and has been President of Brickhampton Golf Club since 2010.
Patrick Brooke is a chartered accountant, recently retired after 44 years in the profession. He was a partner in Grant Thornton UK and during his time there was managing partner of three offices in the region, national partner responsible for Single European Market Services, a regional sales & marketing partner for the South and Wales Region of the firm and Chairman of the national partnership meetings. Outside of the profession, he has been a Non-Executive Director of Gloucestershire Training and Enterprise Council and a director of the Gloucestershire Development Agency. Patrick was Chair of the Cotswold Nuffield Hospital Support Group, a member of the Development Committee of Cheltenham Festivals Ltd and Chair of its Audit Committee, a member of Council at the University of Gloucestershire and Chair of its Audit Committee and a member of Council at Cheltenham College, where he was also a member of Finance & General Purposes Committee and Chair of the Campaign Board. He is currently a Trustee of Cotswold Hospital Radio, a member of the Cheltenham Art Gallery and Museum Development Trust and a Governor at All Saints’ Academy in Cheltenham. He is a regular broadcaster on BBC Radio Gloucestershire, covering financial matters. Patrick is married with two sons and enjoys playing golf and tennis. He is is a member of the New Club, Cheltenham, and Cotswold Hills Golf Club, where he was Captain in 2005 and previously Treasurer. Patrick was a Founding Member of the Honourable Company of Gloucestershire and assumed the role of Warden between May 2012 and April 2013.
Anne Chambers is the owner and hands on gardener at Kiftsgate Court where she has lived most of her life. Anne was High Sheriff of Gloucestershire in 2009 and was a founder member of the Honourable Company; she has been a member of Court since January 2013. Anne has been President of the Gloucestershire Society and a past trustee of the Gloucestershire Community Foundation and has provided support for several local charities. Her interests include travelling and country pursuits.
Professor Colin Dennis has enjoyed a 44-year career in food science and technology, including 28 years at CampdenBRI in Chipping Campden, 21 years during which he was Director General. He continues to advise the food industry internationally as well as the UK Food Standards Agency and Innovate UK. He was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 2009 for services to the Agri-food industry. He has served as a Deputy Lieutenant of Gloucestershire since 2005 and was a founding member of the Honourable Company, where he took over as Warden in May 2014. He is committed to other charitable and pro bono activities such as the International Food Information Service (Chair of Trustees), Governor and member of Audit Committee of the Royal Agricultural University, Governor of the British Nutrition Foundation, Board member of National Skills Academy and is President Elect of the Institute of Food Technologists (USA). He was listed as one of the top 100 Practising Scientists by the Science Council in 2013.
From 1959-2003 Ceri Evans worked with the Charnwood Brick Group, becoming Co-owner and Managing Director. With a turnover of some £10M and over 100 employees, the Group had factories in Gloucestershire, Leicestershire, Sussex and Northamptonshire. He was a Director and Member of the Brick Development Association and Chairman and Director of the Southern Brick Federation,
A magistrate from 1981-2011, Ceri was Chairman, Forest of Dean Bench (1992-1997), Chairman, Gloucestershire Magistrates Courts Committee (1995-2002) and Chairman, Gloucestershire Bench (2005-2008). Appointed a Deputy Lieutenant in 2000, he was High Sheriff of Gloucestershire, 2010/11. His other appointments included Church Warden, 1992-2012, and Chairman Great Oaks Dean Forest Hospice from 2004. A governor of five Forest of Dean schools for over 20 years, Ceri has also chaired the Forest of Dean Round Table and been President, Rotary Club of the Forest of Dean.
He is involved with the Gloucestershire Community Foundation, Crimebeat, Crimestoppers, (Chairman), Sheep Liaison Group (Chairman), Gloucestershire Magistrates Dining Club (Chairman), and is a Trustee and former President of The Gloucestershire Society.
John was born and educated in Suffolk before being commissioned in the Suffolk Regiment for National Service, serving in Trieste and Germany; he then spent 7 years in the TA. After graduating in Natural Science at Cambridge he worked within Unilever for 36 years in a number of different countries and companies. When he retired John was Deputy Chairman of the Walls Ice Cream business and Works Director of the Unilever Ice Cream operation in Gloucester, the largest ice cream factory in Europe. He has held a number of government appointments in various departments, including Michael Heseltine’s Merseyside Task Force and the Ministry of Defence. Within the county he was founder chairman of the Gloucestershire Training and Enterprise Council and the Gloucestershire Development Agency. Always very interested and involved in rural communities, John was chairman of Gloucestershire Rural Community Council (RCC) for 10 years and is currently Treasurer of ACRE, the national umbrella organisation for RCCs across England. He continues to work with a range of organisations across the county and chairs the Gloucestershire Management Research Group, which includes members from the University, Colleges and private sector businesses. John was awarded a CBE for services to training and appointed a Deputy Lieutenant of Gloucestershire in 1994.
Now retired from full time work in the media, Mark joined the BBC in 1978 and, apart from a short time in commercial radio in the early 1980s, has worked for the Corporation continuously in a wide variety of roles; these included presentation and production in both TV and radio before he turned his hand to management and leadership. Appointed as Editor of BBC Radio Stoke in 1998, he returned in 2002 to run Radio Gloucestershire where he was actively involved in many of the station’s major stories, including extensive coverage of the 2007 floods and conducting the final interview with Laurie Lee. Mark remains particularly keen that local media should reflect local rather than national life. In 2013 he worked in London for a year managing a BBC-wide initiative, ‘World War One at Home’, which focussed on the home front. He fulfilled a similar role in 2016, this time with local radio coverage of the centenary of the Battle of the Somme, and continues to work part time for the BBC on various long term projects. He and his family have lived in the county for 27 years and become involved in the local community in a variety of ways; he is a season ticket holder at Kingsholm and sings with local choirs. A founder member of the Honourable Company where he serves on the Arts & Heritage Group, Mark is an Honorary Fellow of the University of Gloucestershire, a Patron of the Friends of the Wilson in Cheltenham, a Governor at King’s School Gloucester and in 2017 was appointed a Deputy Lieutenant.
Sir Michael was born in Kenya of Gloucestershire parents who had emigrated in the 1920s. Sent to Cheltenham College after the war, he maintained a connection with the school through sons and grandchildren, as well as serving as President of Council. His main career was with Standard Chartered Bank where he became chief executive. He was appointed Director of the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London, in 1989 and knighted on retirement. He has been chair of the Royal Commonwealth Society and the British Empire & Commonwealth Museum and, on returning to Gloucestershire in 2004, chair of Cheltenham Festivals. Has been a member of the Honourable Company since 2011 and chairs the Arts & Heritage Group.
An entrepreneur and owner of a specialist telecoms and internet company based in Cheltenham and operating throughout the UK, Ian also has commercial interests in the upstream oil and gas exploration market and previously owned a small chain of restaurants; he has worked extensively throughout the Middle East and Africa as well as the UK. His background includes experience of investment banking, where he developed strategies for the introduction of electronic trading platforms at Deutsche Bank, and policing, where he worked in numerous roles as a senior officer within Gloucestershire Constabulary. Educated at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, Ian was commissioned into the Light Infantry and served in numerous operational theatres domestically and internationally. He is a graduate of Loughborough University and a post graduate of the University of Cambridge. An enthusiastic sportsman, he is a former international hockey player and track & field athlete; he also once held the world record for the longest indoor hockey match. An avid adventurer, he recently completed an expedition into the Arctic Circle and Svalbard (one of the world’s northernmost inhabited areas). Nearer to home Ian provides tutor and mentoring support to 13-14 year old school children and is involved in volunteer coaching for a youth hockey team. He also supports a local initiative to help adults reconnect with hockey and regain fitness after significant breaks from playing regularly.
Chair of the Armed Forces Group, during 34 years in the Army Colonel Tony Singer served all over the world, from Belize to Bangkok via Cyprus and Naples. His last tour of duty ended in 2007 in Germany and he has since maintained a busy lifestyle, acting as Chairman of the St John Council for Gloucestershire, serving on the Diocesan Synod, and as a trustee of the Viney Hill Christian Adventure Centre. He is Chairman of The King's Royal Hussars Regimental Association and also a trustee of the Regiment. As Chairman of SSAFA Gloucestershire Tony is able to draw on experience as a Case Worker for both SSAFA and the Royal British Legion. He is a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Farriers and serves in the Company of Pikemen & Musketeers, the honorary bodyguard of the Lord Mayor of the City of London. Tony's lifelong interest in sailing is now focused on race management, and he runs a number of major annual regattas on the Solent. A family including six grandchildren apart, his other interest is fishing.
The High Sheriff of Gloucestershire for 2017-18, Andrew Tabor is currently farm manager and a partner in a predominantly arable farm in the North Cotswolds. Commissioned from the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst into 15th/19th The King’s Royal Hussars, an armoured reconnaissance regiment, in 1982 he served in a variety of posts at regimental level and on the staff at both the Ministry of Defence and the Permanent Joint Headquarters, Northwood, before leaving the Army in 2001. He is a serving magistrate and since 2009 has run a Mock Trial Competition for Primary Schools which teaches children about the criminal justice system and develops their confidence in public speaking. He is also active in both The Royal British Legion and ABF The Soldiers’ Charity, within the county.
The Watts family have been part of Gloucestershire for over 150 years and runs, under John’s chairmanship, a business said to be the third oldest in the county. Educated at Wycliffe and Selwyn College, Cambridge, after an engineering apprenticeship and experience in European motor sport, he returned to the family business in 1966. Although based in the Forest of Dean, Watts Group has been active worldwide in manufacturing and transportation, with John taking a leading role in the motor trade and tyre trade organisations both in the UK and worldwide. He became a DL in 2009 and continues to contribute to several Forest of Dean and county business and educational organisations. A Foundation Member of the Court and trustee of the Honourable Company’s charitable arm – it was formed during his time as Warden – John is also a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Carmen. For generations his family have been active Freemasons and he is currently Deputy Provincial Grand Master of the Provincial Grand Lodge of Gloucestershire with special interests in fundraising and charitable activities. As Chairman of several family charitable trusts in Lydney , John’s objective is to benefit the local community without external funding support. In his spare time he continues to take advantage of his free over-75 ski pass and enjoys the garden at the family home in Lydney.
Hugh Tollemache was born in Suffolk, and moved to Gloucestershire in 1974. After school, Hugh spent two years in the jungles of Borneo teaching at a Secondary School as a volunteer with Voluntary Service Overseas. On his return he spent some years in the City of London with Barclays Bank and with the Financial Times. He then decided to spend a decade studying the major religions and the wisdom that has been passed down through many cultures over the centuries. He was instrumental in starting a school which continues to educate people of all ages and beliefs. As a by-product, he built up a printing company which was based in Cheltenham employing about 100 people. Hugh was brought up with a love and respect for the Natural World and in recent years he was able to devote some time as Chairman of the Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust, and Trustee of the Royal Society of Wildlife Trusts. He was High Sheriff of Gloucestershire in 2013/14 and is on the Council of the High Sheriffs’ Association. Hugh is married to Rosie, whose help, support and wise advice he values greatly; they have three sons, Tom, David and Johnny who are in their twenties.