About Us

Our Members

Mr Derek Blake MBE

Derek Blake is a former Bank of England senior official with extensive governance experience in the education and charity sectors. Member of Social Security and Employment Tribunals spanning a twenty five year period. Former Chairman of the Theatre Royal, Bury St Edmunds and Sudbury and District CAB. Particular experience of employment and other HR issues (MSc in HR and FCIPD). Current Trustee of Clare Castle Country Park and Clare Ancient House Museum, and Chairman, Clare Walks Group.
Declaration of business interests: Clare Castle Country Park - Trustee, Ancient House Museum - Trustee, Clare Liaison & Support Project - wife is Secretary and part time driver, Independent Review Panel, West Suffolk Council - Member of Panel, Suffolk Local Access Forum, Suffolk County Council - Member of Forum.

Mr Simon Ash

Former Chief Constable of Suffolk until 2013. Served 30 years as a police officer in Kent, Hertfordshire and Suffolk. Currently an Independent Member of the Parole Board and Independent Chair of the Bishops Safeguarding Panel for Ipswich and St Edmundsbury.

Declaration of Business Interests: None

Mr Keith Haisman BEM

Chair of Trustees - Keith was awarded the British Empire Medal for services to education in the 2013 New Year Honours List. A former senior executive with a multi-national banking group. Keith’s experience spans Board-level roles in all aspects of Financial Services and Business Associations. Keith has served on the management board of a school in Germany.

Declaration of Business Interests: None

Mr Phil Stanbury-Jones

Phil lives in Clare, is a parent of four school aged children and works in Cambridge as an Operations Director for a FTSE 100 high-tech company.

Declaration of Business Interests: None

Mr Richard Smith

Chair of Governors at Stour Valley Community School – Resident of Clare, Emeritus Professor of Historical Geography and Demography and Emeritus Fellow of Downing College, Cambridge, Chair of Clare Historical and Archaeological Society and The Clare Ancient House Museum.
Declaration of Business Interests: None

Our Trustees

Mr Keith Haisman BEM

Chair of Trustees - Keith was awarded the British Empire Medal for services to education in the 2013 New Year Honours List. A former senior executive with a multi-national banking group. Keith’s experience spans Board-level roles in all aspects of Financial Services and Business Associations. Keith has served on the management board of a school in Germany.

Declaration of Business Interests: None

Miss Laura Goldsmith

Community Trustee. A CIPD qualified Human Resources (HR) professional with broad generalist experience in both the public and private sectors. Prior to working in HR, Laura has worked in operational management, marketing and accountancy, which enables her to take a broader view of the best approach to different business challenges.

Declaration of Business Interests: Philips AVENT (Employee)

Mr Chris Hawkins

Community Trustee. Clare resident with specialist knowledge in building maintenance programmes, refurbishment, costings and management, as a Chartered Building Surveyor at leading international real estate advisers, Savills Plc.

Declaration of Business Interests: Associate Director. Savills (UK) Ltd. Director & Secretary, East of England Buildings & Preservation Trust

Mr Tony Sharp

Community Trustee. Originally a social worker, specialising in working with dementia patients, and a member of the Central Council for Education and Training (CCETSW). Tony became the first City & Guilds Health and Social Care Adviser in England, and In June 2018 was appointed an Honorary Member of The City and Guilds of London Institute. Tony and his extended family had lived and worked in Clare across many generations; he created the Clare Town Lions Junior Football Club, was a Trustee of the Playing Fields and Pavilion and was responsible for reporting to the Suffolk FA as part of the Football Foundation Grant.

Declaration of Business Interests: None

Mrs Suzanne Goldsmith

Community Trustee - Suzanne is a qualified Chartered Accountant and has been an auditor for more than 15 years. As a manager in an accountancy practice she works entirely in the charity and not for profit sector and has a number of Academy Trusts amongst her portfolio of clients. Suzanne lives in Clare and has two school age children.

Declaration of Business Interests: Price Bailey LLP (employee) Clare Bears (Trustee, Treasurer), Cambridge Carbon Footprint (Trustee)

Mrs Rachel Kelly

Headteacher of Stour Valley Community School. CEO of Stour Valley Educational Trust Ltd (any MAT enquiries to Rachel please, rkelly@stourvalley.org). Rachel was previously a Deputy Headteacher at Notley High School and Braintree Sixth Form in North Essex. She began her teaching career as a French teacher in 1995 in Norwich. Her career path has allowed her to develop significant expertise as a Teacher of French, Head of Modern Foreign Languages, Professional Tutor for Trainee Teachers, Advanced Skills Teacher and she has a wealth of experience in a variety of roles as a Senior Leader. She is married with two teenage children. In her spare time she enjoys walking her Cocker Spaniel, Pilates and Parkrun.

Declaration of Business Interests: None

Mrs Mary Evans

Suffolk County Councillor.

Declaration of Business Interests: None

Mr Richard Priestley

Community Trustee. Originally a Teacher of Classics, Richard became a member of a working group for the Oxford Local Examination Board (OLEB) creating new GCSE courses in Classical subjects. Developing his career through Deputy and then Headship, he continued as Chief Examiner of O-level Greek for OLEB and represented the Board on the Secondary Examinations and Assessment Council (SEAC). Since retiring, Richard volunteers for the National Trust at Wimpole Hall, is Secretary of the Royston and Saffron Walden National Trust Association, Director of the Museum in Saffron Walden and Vice-Chairman of the Probus Club of Audley End. Richard was also on the Stour Valley Community School start-up committee.

Declaration of Business Interests: None

Important Documents