Cogges Manor House garden view in summer
Meet the board
Our Trustees

representing communities with a range of expertise

Cogges Trustees (voluntary roles)

Cogges Heritage Trust is the charity which cares for and runs Cogges Manor Farm. It contributes by providing experience and expertise, as well as working on long term improvements, projects and fundraising initiatives to fund developmental learning programmes and refurbishment projects. To contact the Trust directly, please email the Chair of Trustees Paul Evans

Meet the board of Trustees

Paul Evans Chair of Trustees portrait image
Paul Evans (Chair)

Appointed Chair of Trustees in November 2021, Paul retired from running his own management consultancy business in 2017 and prior to that was European Commercial Director for an American chemical company with responsibility for business in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Paul was previously Chair of the Board of Trustees for Citizens Advice North Oxfordshire & South Northants, and also volunteers for the Environment Agency as a volunteer assistant lock keeper on the river Thames. Together with his wife Rosie, Paul has been an active volunteer at Cogges since January 2017.

Trustee profile headshot Amanda Blythe-Smith
Amanda Blythe-Smith

Works as a valuation surveyor, within a specialist leisure and trade-related team at Savills PLC in Oxford, for the last ten years. She lives in north Oxfordshire with partner and cocker spaniel who keep her outside and active.

Lewis Bowman

Lewis is a chartered accountant and holds the ICAEW charity specialist qualification the Diploma in Charity Accounting. He trained within practice at a firm based in Oxfordshire and London but he is now Head of Finance at national charity Plunkett Foundation, a charity that focuses on rural empowerment through community business.

Trustee profile headshot Jim Bradshaw
Jim Bradshaw

Trained as a Chartered Public Finance Accountant. He worked for several organisations including Lancashire County Council and Oxfordshire County Council but the significant part of his career has been as Deputy Vice Chancellor with Oxford Brookes and Sunderland Universities.

Peter Chana

Peter is a Chartered Construction Manager and a Fellow of the Association for Project Management. He has 30 plus years of corporate experience and is the founder and Managing Director of Chana Projects who are an independent construction, heritage, and property consultancy. They provide project, programme, and portfolio management services together with listed building & heritage asset management solutions. Peter has a passion for all aspects of the heritage, arts and culture sector and helping to preserve assets for future generations.

Lucy Chesher

Lucy Chesher is a Chartered Health & Safety lead with over 20 years experience working across different businesses from UNESCO World Heritage Sites to rural and manufacturing environments as well as being an Event H&S Advisor. Lucy is also a member of the IOSH Rural Industries Group who provide guidance to industries including farming and forestry. Lucy lives in Oxfordshire with her family and two cats, and has also been a Cogges Volunteer on the Witney Remembers Project.

Rachel Harber

Rachel Harber is an HR Consultant specialising in talent attraction and retention strategies. She has over two decades with recruitment and HR and is a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD). Rachel lives near Burford and has a young family who regularly enjoy visiting Cogges.

Peter Harkness

Peter Harkness has spent most of his career on the Boards of media and finance companies, having started life as a newspaper reporter. He is a director of GlobalData plc, an international business information group. For the last 10 years he has also farmed in the Cotswolds, specialising in sheep, with six different breeds, including a flock of rare Whitefaced Woodlands. He has previously served as a Trustee of organisations managing heritage assets in Yorkshire and Gloucestershire.

Trustee profile headshot Graeme Merrifield
Graeme Merifield

Managing Director of Tribe Festivals, who run events and festivals including the 10,000 a day capacity Wychwood Festival at Cheltenham Racecourse; launched in 2005, it has been nominated Best Family Festival in the UK Festival Awards each and every year since. Graeme also set up and runs the Cheltenham Comedy Festival. He previously worked across arts and events and in music sponsorship for Elton John. He is a local resident who has enjoyed Cogges with his children for the last 13 years.

Trustee profile headshot Adam Nickson
Adam Nickson

Marketing and PR Director for real estate and flex-office space brand, Fora. Adam has over 20 years experience of building strong brands such as Dyson, Renault, Hyundai and Jaguar – bringing data, insight, customer behaviour and creativity together. Adam has lived locally in Witney since 2006 with his wife and two daughters.

Trustee profile headshot Emily Hirons
Emily Spencer

Currently Head of Operations at Blenheim and previously Area Manager for a leading visitor attractions company, developing and operating award winning sites across the UK. Emily has worked in heritage management for the last 15 years, in both commercial and charitable fields. She lives in Oxfordshire.

Suzanne Williams

Suzanne Williams is Head of Marketing & Communications for Oxford University's Gardens, Libraries and Museums. She has over 20 years' experience in senior roles covering audience development, exhibition programming, marketing, communications and digital in libraries (Bodleian Libraries), museums (Glasgow Museums, Leicestershire Museums) and for clients such as the Toronto Film Festival and History Television. Suzanne lives in Oxford with her two daughters.