The Directors

The Trustees of the Honiton Community Complex Charity are also Directors

There are three categories of director:

Council Directors (max 2) nominated by Honiton Town Council together having no more than 19.9% of voting power.

Charity Directors (max 2) representing Charity Members (members of the public or organisations).

Appointed Directors, appointed by all the directors (no maximum).

Claire Browne – Appointed Director

Although not born and bred in the West Country, I have spent the last 36 years living and working in East Devon, most of this within the Honiton area.

I am qualified as a teacher and have worked in schools and universities in East and Mid Devon, Exeter and Australia; my final post was that of head teacher at The Topsham School, Exeter.

I have always had a keen interest in the arts, especially the performing arts. I have performed with many local musical societies and have had the privilege of performing at the O2, Royal Albert Hall and Brisbane City Hall. I am currently musical director for Axe Vale Singers.

John Burgess – Appointed Director

I am a Lincolnshire boy with only two claims to fame, I attended the same school as Isaac Newton and sat in the same Methodist Church as Margaret Thatcher. As teachers often do, I married a teacher, and Judy and I had 13 enjoyable years in Dunster, before moving to Honiton in 1982. Somehow we accumulated 6 children who all attended Honiton Community College.

I have always been involved in community activities, first mainly in churches but in recent years on the committees of Honiton Running Club and Honiton Spinners cycling club. In 2012, when The Beehive project was finally given the go-ahead, I became secretary of Friends of The Beehive, the charity charged with raising about £100,000 to equip the building, and joined the Honiton Community Complex Company to help plan for the running of the Centre. It has been a privilege to work alongside so many far-sighted and self-sacrificing people who raised the money and prepared the building for opening in April 2014, and since then to work to establish The Beehive as a Community & Arts Centre that Honiton can be proud of.

Ron Galling – Member-Nominated Director

I was born in Devon and won scholarships to Exeter School and Cambridge University where I was awarded an MA.  I worked in agriculture and have served as Chairman of the British Cattle Breeders Club and Chairman of the British Institute of Agricultural Consultants as well as Hon Treasurer of the Chartered  Institute of Arbitrators.

Much of his work has been in dispute resolution and in middle age, I passed the LLB (Batchelor of Laws) external examination of London University as well as the Fellowship examination of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators. I have been chairman of small companies in the UK and South Africa.

Phil Weller – Member-Nominated Director



David Perkins – Appointed Director

After graduating from Kent University, I started my career in the Personnel department with Prudential Assurance in London. This was followed by a period lecturing in Economics.

I then qualified as a chartered accountant and chartered tax advisor with experience in regional & international practices. My career encompasses being a principal in an accountancy practice, an investor and finance director in a market leading software house, an investor and finance director in a manufacturing company producing packaging for the major food producers and retailers. I was also a non executive director of the Royal & Derngate Theatres Trust Ltd in Northampton.

I am a keen supporter of the arts and live music and can occasionally be seen playing acoustic guitar in local venues.

Martin Potts – Appointed Director

I studied mechanical & electronic engineering and am a qualified telecommunications engineer. I have worked in the electronics service industry with a great variety of consumer electronic equipment.

I have been self-employed in the retail sector of the electronic and acoustic music industry and within the electronics manufacturing sector as test, production and design engineer in both the telecommunication sector (Racal) and professional audio sector (MC2 Audio). I am a keen musician and vocalist having played in a variety of bands from the age of 13 as guitarist, keyboard player and singer. I retired last year and currently balance my time between children, grandchildren and the sound, stage lighting and other technical issues for The Beehive. I also provide technical support to the local theatre groups who perform at The Beehive.

Barry Simmonds – Appointed Director, Chair of the Board

I qualified as an accountant before graduating in business studies and pursuing a career in Personnel and Operations. Initially in the telecommunications industry with STC (ITT) I moved to Schlumberger Ltd, the oil field exploration and energy management multinational spending ten years in senior international appointments.

Following periods with Control Data and GE, I served as Executive Vice President of the Corange/Boerhinger Mannheim healthcare groups. I am currently managing partner for an executive search company and in addition, in 2009 I founded Mediare – a mediation company.

I have lived in Holland, France and Japan. Since an early age, I have had a keen interest in the theatre – both on and off stage.

To be confirmed – Council-Nominated Directors

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