Advisory Group

Revd Captain Clive Deverell – the Anglican Minister in the West Swindon & the Lydiards Church Partnership. Brought up in the 1960s and 1970s in Dorset, his personal commitment to follow Jesus came following spending time as a late teenager at a Franciscan friary in Cerne Abbas where he saw and felt the depth of faith the brothers there had.

He started to consider ministry and a Church Army officer in the Parish suggested he do some work with him.

Having worked for 21 years in a variety of roles for Church Army he was ordained in 2007. Having oversight of St Mary’s since November 2010 he works closely with the staff and volunteers in the park and is committed to ensuring St Mary’s continues to play a central role in the parks future.

David Sparks – A freelance digital marketer, David is also a student of horticulture, student member of the RHS, volunteer gardener at Lydiard House and member of Incredible Edible Swindon. Lydiard House and its surrounding gardens and parkland have been a p16art of his and his children’s life for decades.

Emma Rees – Trustee and Director of the Phoenix Enterprises Ltd – a business with both social and commercial aims. The aim of the enterprise is to work with people recovering from short and long term mental health problems, learning disabilities and physical disabilities, which include the provision of extensive training programs while continuing to develop the organisations business portfolio. It was set up in 2002 to offer a quality mailing & assembly service to businesses and the voluntary sector in the Swindon area, it has now diversified and includes mail order returns, mail sorting and document collation in its portfolio of services.

Hannah Parry – Hannah has worked on a wide range of youth and community projects over 15+ years, both professionally and voluntarily, in various locations but particularly and extensively in Swindon with organisations including the Octobus Project and the University of Bath. She has trained and worked in Community Development in the central area of Swindon and is involved with many organisations and projects in the wider Swindon area.  She currently works for Voluntary Action Swindon, in a paid capacity, but is also chair of trustees for Viewpoint Community Media and vice chair of the national Community Media Association.

Hilary Coates – As the franchise holder of ‘Wagging Tails’ for the SN postcode, Hilary has lived in west Swindon for 22 years. She has walked her dog in Lydiard Park pretty much every morning for over ten years and has much experience working with Swindon Borough Councils licensing department on issues such as the legislation surrounding home boarding (of dogs). She has also provided expert opinion on the Lydiard Park Public Space Protection Order (PSPO).

Jim Robbins – Labour Councillor for Mannington and Western. Jim has always worked in the education sector, and is passionate about education and delivering the very best opportunities for everyone in Swindon. He and his wife are long term foster parents and help with weekend respite care. Jim is a member of the Executive Committee (EC) of South Swindon Labour Party, currently holding the position of Press Officer.

John Ball – John is the founder of the local wildflower charity FAB (wild Flowers And Butterflies), which has established wild flower habitats in dozens of locations in and around Swindon.  He has also been a craft gardener for Lydiard Park Walled Garden for seven years until September 2016. John’s professional engineering background, including Motorola in Swindon, has helped him be effective in hisp1110752 passion for supporting bumblebees and butterflies by creating wild flower habitats.  FAB’s aim is to ‘put nature on people’s doorsteps’; Lydiard Park is thus seen by John, who lives nearby, as having massive potential, along with Shaw Ridge and other West Swindon locations. Many sites in Lydiard Park have already benefitted by FAB activity, including lakeside wetland flowers, meadow areas, woodland plants such as bluebell and primrose, and specialist species along woodland edges.  Habitats have also been created in the grounds of St Mary’s church.

John Morris – an MBA graduate from the Open University, an ex RAF technician and 33 year veteran of a multinational corporation where he managed business interests in a variety of countries including Russia, US and Poland as well as the UK. He is a passionate advocate for delivering exceptional customer experience.

He is now leveraging the knowledge gained from his variety of experiences to provide transformation support for businesses, conducting research on customer experience behaviours and co-authoring a book on the delivery and implementation of Customer Experience.

p1110761Matt Holland – Swindon Festival of Literaturerector Matt Holland has lived and worked in Swindon and at Lower Shaw Farm since 1980. He is a keen participant in Swindon parkrun, which takes place weekly in Lydiard Park. As a regular user of the Park, with his children, friends, visitors to Lower Shaw Farm, and for author and activity events during the Festival of Literature, Matt is always keen to introduce new people to its charms.

Michael Gray – Michael is a Chartered Architect who, during his training in the 1980s, was involved with various conservation projects in Lydiard Park. After qualifying he went on to found an architect’s practice in Holland Park which enabled him in collaboration with the then keeper Sarah Finch-Crisp and Canon Brian Carne to research, record and interpret the architectural history of the house.

After a further directorship in London he decided to specialise in the conservation of historic buildings leading to a Masters at Bath University involving research into the historic structure of the mansion. He has since moved back to Swindon where he is involved in disseminating research into architectural history and acts as a Trustee of the Friends of Lydiard Park.

Paul Dobson – Swindon 10 to 18 Project manager.  Swindon has a Youth Council, a Member of Youth Parliament, and two Deputies (MYPs), Thought Tank – a dedicated participation group for young people with disabilities, and our Young Inspectors programme. The MYPs, Youth Council and Thought Tank give young people the chance to express their ideas, opinions and needs to decision makers and regularly present to Elected Members and the Children’s Health, Social Care and Education Overview & Scrutiny Committee. Young Inspectors visit services that work with and impact upon children and young people to assess and evaluate how well they are meeting their needs; advise on improvements and report on their findings.

Rob Chappell – 50 years a Swindonian, Rob Chappell has worked in the local voluntary sector for the past 25 years, including 6 years running the local outpost of the Human City Institute, where he worked on a number of neighbourhood renewal and community open space projects. He is a ‘planning for real’ practitioner and has been instrumental in organising community input into the development of a number of Swindon’s shared spaces.

Rob is currently the managing director of The SMASH Youth Project, where he has spent the last 12 years working with one of Swindon’s largest volunteer forces and thousands of the town’s children and young people. Rob is an experienced fundraiser with an extensive knowledge of the local voluntary sector and is a family man with two children who regularly use the Park.p1110787

Stan Pajak – Liberal Democrats Councillor for Eascott. Stan Pajak, the Liberal Democrat Council group leader has been a councillor for Eastcott for 31 years with the simple policy of keeping in touch with residents and getting things done not just at election time but throughout the year. It’s a formula that appears to work and Stan is keen to continue, whether it’s taking direct action to remove fly tipped rubbish or speaking out on the Council. A keen community champion Stan has also been a big fund raiser for local charities such as Dial A Ride through his sponsored marathon runs. Born in Swindon and living in the town throughout his life he has no hesitation in stating that promoting our town and getting the best deal for the residents he represents are part of his DNA.

p1110733Tim Swinyard – Conservative Councillor for Lydiard and Freshbrook. Having grown up in the ward, Tim has always had a passion for the area. He is a Millbrook Primary School governor, a Rotarian and a lifelong Swindon Town FC fan. He intends to do everything possible to continue to improve the area for the benefit of residents throughout the ward. Lydiard Park itself was restored and has been significantly improved over the years, and so he wants to ensure its long term future is protected.