Trustees | The Mary Rose

Meet the Board of Trustees

Alan Lovell


Alan Lovell is Chair of Interserve and of Safestyle plc and SID of SIG plc. He is also engaged in the world of renewable energy.

He has held a number of roles as chairman, chief executive and finance director with a wide range of listed and private companies including Infinis Limited, Jarvis plc, Dunlop Slazenger Group and Costain Group PLC. He qualified as a chartered accountant with Price Waterhouse.

 He became a Trustee of the Mary Rose Trust in 2007 and chaired the appeal for the new museum; he became Chairman in August 2015. Elsewhere in the not-for-profit world, he is Chairman of Hampshire Cultural Trust, Chair of Governors of the University of Winchester and a Trustee of Winchester Cathedral. He was High Sheriff of Hampshire in 2010/11.

David Palmer CBE
Vice Chairman


David retired from a 38-year career in newspapers and media in 2002.  He was chief executive of the Financial Times from 1990-1993, and chief executive of Independent Newspapers in Ireland from 1994 to 1999.  He has recently completed a 4 ½-year stint as Chairman of the United Kingdom Hydrographic Office and has formerly held non-executive positions in printing companies, commercial radio stations and in the National Health Service. 

He joined the Mary Rose Trust as a Trustee in 2003.

Bob Bewley

Bob was appointed a Trustee in 2014. He joined the Heritage Lottery Fund as Director of Operations in May 2007.  Prior to this he worked as Regional Director for English Heritage in the South West, and before that as Head of Survey for English Heritage.

He trained as an archaeologist (at Manchester and Cambridge Universities) BA, MPhil and PhD.   His research interests are all in periods of archaeology but in particular prehistory, landscape archaeology and the Middle East. He has worked in over a dozen European countries as well as Oman, Saudi Arabia, Libya, Iraq, Iran and Jordan.

Holder of a UK Private Pilot's Licence (Manchester and Salford University Air Squadron, RAF. 1976-1978), and a Jordanian Private Pilot’s Licence (Issued October 2001).

Through his work in the heritage sector he has been recognised as an Honorary Visiting Professor at the Institute of Archaeology, UCL and an Honorary Lecturer at the University of Perth, Western Australia. 

Helen Bonser-Wilton

Helen was born and raised in Lincolnshire and received an Honours degree in German and Spanish from Bradford University.

She started her career in Advertising Agencies as an Account Manager and moved into Brand and Marketing with Crown Paint. After a spell as Group Marketing Manager at Bernstein Kitchens, Helen relocated down to Devon and joined the National Trust as Marketing and Supporter Development Manager. Helen then moved to Somerset to be Project Director of Tyntesfield, a £17 million project that was, at the time, the National Trust’s biggest ever project. She became Operations Director for National Trust South West and also led the National Trust’s 2010 Change Programme as Programme Director. 

Helen became Chief Executive of Mary Rose in 2015 and headed up the 2016 relaunch of the Museum. 
Helen is married to Rob and has an 11-year old son Lorcan. 

Chris Brandon

Chris, an architect, began his career at Powell Moya. He went on to become a partner of Michaelis Brandon Architects and Solar Energy Developments, where he was involved in innovative, low-energy projects.

In 1986 he co-founded Pringle Brandon, now Perkins+Will, an award winning international architectural firm.  Chris was the interior architect for the Mary Rose museum.  He is a past chairman of the Nautical Archaeology Society, Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London and co-director of the Roman Maritime Concrete Study. 

Chris was appointed as a Trustee in 2013.

Professor Van Gore CBE

Formerly Vice-Chancellor of Southampton Solent University, Van retired in 2014 to take up poetry writing and amateur dramatics.

He is chairman of the Pitton Village Theatre Club and writes, directs and acts in its local productions, which include an annual pantomime. He was awarded the CBE in 2014 for “services to Higher Education” and still undertakes occasional consultancy work within the sector. 

He was appointed a Trustee in 2014.

Rupert Grey

Rupert is with Swan Turton Solicitors.  Following a long career as a libel lawyer he now advises photographers, book publishers and syndication agencies on all aspects of copyright law. He serves on the board of several charities and is Chair of The Nekton Mission, whose task is to explore and conserve the world's most unknown and least protected ocean.  He is also an active Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and a Member of the Liverpool Institute of the Performing Arts.  Every now and again he disappears on long expeditions to remote places with his wife Jan.    

He was appointed a Trustee in 2010.

Vice Admiral Peter Hudson CB CBE

Vice Admiral Peter Hudson CB CBE joined as a trustee in 2016.   During his service with the Royal Navy, he held numerous commands during his 36 year career including three warships, the UK’s amphibious forces and multinational coalition operations in the Gulf.  As a Flag Officer, his senior appointments included leading EU operations undertaking counter piracy operations off Somalia and serving as NATO’s senior maritime commander for alliance wide maritime operations during which he was also a member of the UK’s Navy Board. 

Currently he sits on the BAE Systems Maritime and Land Board where he is the company’s Naval Advisor. He is the National President of the Combined Cadet Force and a Commissioner of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.     

Adam Humphryes

Adam Humphryes is a chartered accountant with an MBA from London Business School, who has held senior board positions in private sector companies. He is presently Vice-Chairman of Crown lodge Management Ltd, a property management company.

He was Chairman of CityWest Homes, a development and property management company in Westminster, managing twenty-two thousand properties. He was a Trustee of Work this Way, providing training, work experience, employment and mentoring for offenders at Ford Open prison. Adam was Finance Director and a major shareholder in private equity backed Wightlink Ferries Ltd. With two partners, he started the first local television company in the UK, which was subsequently listed on AIM. He was also a Governor of Portsmouth University and a Board member of Drum Housing Association. 

Adam joined the Mary Trust Board of Trustees in 2013 and is Chairman of the Trust’s Finance and Audit Committee.

Dr Janet Owen

Following on from a degree in Archaeology and Anthropology at the University of Cambridge (Newnham College), Janet has spent the last twenty years as a cultural professional, during which time she was awarded a PhD from the University of Durham for her work in the history of archaeology and science. Janet has a strong curatorial, operational and strategic management background in the arts and museums sector, and was the former Chief Executive Officer for Hampshire Cultural Trust.  Janet is Executive Director of The Earth Museum, and a Cultural Heritage Consultant.

She has previously worked as Head of Curatorial Group at the National Maritime Museum, Arts and Heritage Manager at Southampton City Council, Manager at Nottingham Castle and Head of Arts and Museums at Hampshire County Council. Janet is a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries, Fellow of the Royal Society for the Arts, and a Trustee of Quay Arts on the Isle of Wight. She also continues her research and writing interests, and is the author of Darwin’s Apprentice: an archaeological biography of John Lubbock.  Janet was appointed a Trustee in 2011, having been nominated by Hampshire County Council.

Tim Rusby

Tim is the Managing Director of The Visitor Attraction Company. For well over thirty years Tim has led the planning, design, construction, launch and operation of commercially-led visitor attraction development projects.

Having worked on all sides of the leisure and attraction project table; as a client and a developer, attraction owner & operator, delivery contractor and development consultant, Tim has a uniquely rounded knowledge of what makes attractions and leisure destinations tick, especially in complex, multi-stakeholder organisation and environments.

Tim works with private sector operators, developers and investors, brand and IP owners, local authorities, national governments, and a wide range of not-for-profit, charities and trusts.

Tim has uniquely diverse experience of museums and heritage centres, historic properties, theme and amusement parks, zoos and aquariums, retail destinations, mixed use developments, sports and adventure amenities and parklands & public realm projects.

Tim now specialises in heading up place-making initiatives – leading projects through the planning, design, creation and management of compelling places for people to visit; developing locations into popular destinations that promote visitors’ enjoyment, enrichment, assess and usage and improving sites to enhance their popularity or profitability.

Outside of his ‘day job’ Tim serves as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Portsmouth D-Day Museum Trust.  He joined the Mary Rose Trust as a Trustee-Director in 2018.

Sophia Weston

Educated at Durham University, Sophia has worked in publishing and journalism in addition to over 25 years’ experience in transformational grant making.  Sophia managed The Garfield Weston Foundation during the latter years of her father Garry Weston’s chairmanship before she became a Trustee in 1994.  Sophia joined the Mary Rose Trust Board in 2017 and is a member of the Development Board for the National Portrait Gallery.  She is married and has three children.

Dr David Starkey was a long serving member of the Mary Rose Board and has given his Tudor expertise generously to help with the creation and promotion of the Mary Rose Museum. We remain extremely grateful for this help.  

However, we were appalled to hear Dr Starkey’s public comments on slavery today. Mary Rose Trust is a charity that exists for the benefit of everyone and we have zero tolerance for such comments. The Board of the Mary Rose Trust has therefore accepted Dr Starkey’s resignation.