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Andrew Dick – Trustee

Posted on: July 7th, 2023 by Iain Looms

Andrew is a Chartered Accountant who, after qualification, worked in various senior accounting and general management roles within British and American companies in Europe and the UK. Since retirement, he has spent much of his time in roles within the not-for-profit sector. These have included acting as the Chair of Governors of a special needs school and as a Trustee of Amnesty International.

Andrew has had extensive experience of the challenges facing residential homes for older people, including those faced during the Covid pandemic. He has been involved with the Abbeyfield movement for over 20 years and, from 2005, was the Chairman of The Abbeyfield North Downs Society, based at the David Gresham House residential care home, in Oxted. This home merged with the Abbeyfield Wey Valley Society in May 2023.

Andrew is married to Felicity and has two children and three grandchildren. He is a great lover of cricket and of music, especially opera.

Nicholas Grealy

Posted on: April 19th, 2023 by Iain Looms

Nicholas’ whole career has been in social care. He went to university
as a mature student, reading social studies and social work, and then
started work as a mental health social worker. For the last twelve
years of his career he was a Senior Manager, running the Learning
Disability Service in parts of Surrey.
A widower, Nicholas was married for forty years and has three stepchildren.
Sadly his wife developed Alzheimer’s Disease in her sixties
and he was her carer for many years before she moved into a nursing
His main interests are in Art, especially Dutch Art, plays, especially Shakespeare and some
history, although he says he not a great reader!

Elaine Edgar

Posted on: April 19th, 2023 by Iain Looms

After studying for a degree in history, Elaine joined the civil service and worked mainly at the Department of Health in central London, in many different policy jobs for over 38 years. Her last job was lead on policy for family carers and she was awarded an OBE for support to carers in 2014. Elaine has lived in Dorking for 24 years and is now an active member of Rotary in Dorking and a lay partner in the Surrey Downs Health & Care Partnership Board which covers Mole Valley, Epsom, Ewell, Banstead and East Elmbridge.

Elaine became an ABVS Trustee and member of the Care Committee in September 2022 when Nower House in Dorking merged with the Society. She was a member of Nower House’s management committee from 2017. Elaine’s hobbies include gardening, reading and travel.

Mr Paul Whitlock

Posted on: March 6th, 2016 by Mark Ashmore

Paul Whitlock was born in Chichester and attended Woodbridge School in Suffolk. After ʻAʼ Levels, he went to the University of Sheffield where he graduated in electrical engineering. Following a graduate apprenticeship with Smiths Industries in London, he worked for Bell South in Atlanta, Georgia and for Bell Canada in Montreal and Toronto – where he met his wife. He attended York University in Toronto where he gained an MBA after which he worked as a management consultant for Coopers & Lybrand (now PWC) in Canada and Ireland. His subsequent career has been primarily in international management with major telecommunications manufacturers such as Plessey and Nortel Networks, but has also involved running a Canadian daily newspaper. Paul and his wife (now deceased) have lived in Farnham since 1987, have three sons all of whom attended local schools including Weydon and then went on to university. They have three small granddaughters. Paul is now retired and in addition to being a trustee of the Society is also a trustee of the Dempster Trust and an active member of the Rotary Club of Farnham.

Mr Desmond Hutchinson

Posted on: March 5th, 2016 by Tracey Pollard

Honorary Secretary

Desmond Hutchinson was born in Kensington London, into a family of many generations of military service, both British and (up to the end of WW1) Indian.  He studied at Bedford School and then entered RMA Sandhurst, gaining his commission in December 1966 in the Royal Artillery, serving 1 completed officer tour in Germany, marrying his first wife Malti in 1969. After leaving the Army, he trained as a solicitor in Cambridge, and became a partner with the firm of Francis & Co, specialising in commercial property litigation. He set up his own practice in 1990 in Enfield, (having obtained an MBA through Henley Management College), specialising in Debt Recovery litigation, being one the first to develop and utilise computerised software for such purposes, as well as commercial litigation and company law. He  opened a second office in Cambridge and took over the Enfield practice of Daultry & Keen, and before merging with the Cambridge firm of Crossmans.  His wife, Malti, sadly died in 2001, in 2003 he married Shireen, and moved to Farnham in 2005 where he became a consultant (and later a director) solicitor with Burkill Govier, for whom he continues to work, continuing to specialise in Commercial Property Litigation and Company Law.

Desmond is secretary of the Code of Practice Committee of the National Office of Animal Health, a self-regulatory body dealing with animal health pharmaceutical promotion.  He became a trustee of AWVS in 2016 and became Honorary Secretary in December 2017. He and Shireen have three children and six grandchildren, between them.

Mr Tim Shepherd

Posted on: March 4th, 2016 by RichardOld

Chairman of Care Committee

After leaving Kings College School in Wimbledon Tim studied Business Studies before joining the family firm of Road Surfacing and Public Works contractors. In 1971 he bought a Nursing Home in Hindhead and spent the next 38 years developing it to provide a personalised and caring environment for elderly residents and convalescents.   Tim retired in 2009. Tim is married with two children and two grandchildren, and is a member of The Haslemere Rotary Club, and Secretary of Elstead PCC. He enjoys sailing, music, theatre, gardening and travel in both the UK and France. As well as being a Trustee, Tim is Chairman of the Care and Housing Committee.



Mr Peter Duffy

Posted on: March 3rd, 2016 by Mark Ashmore

Hon. Treasurer and Chairman of the Finance Committee

Peter had thirty years with National Westminster Bank, which included four years in France and three in Spain, where he was Managing Director of Banco NatWest, the Group subsidiary there. However, most of his time in the Bank was spent developing business with major international companies, especially in the oil sector. He was eventually responsible for leading all the sections covering the energy, mining, aviation, shipping and automobile industries. After retiring from Natwest, he returned to full time study, taking a B.A. and an M.A. in art history at the Courtauld Institute and a further M.A. in history at Kings College, London. He is a member of U3A, The University of the Third Age and has been a chairman and/or trustee of a number of local charities. He is married to Wendy and they have two daughters and five very active grandchildren. As well as being Honorary Treasurer, Peter is also a member of the Finance Committee.

Mrs Gillian Ward

Posted on: March 2nd, 2016 by RichardOld

Vice Chair of Board of Trustees

Gillian spent her teen years in Farnham before moving to London and working as a legal secretary. She then became PA to an MP for several years before marrying and moving first to Scotland, then to Esher with several trips to Indonesia and Libya in between. Gillian’s husband is presently the Mayor of Farnham, but was previously in the oil industry before he retired when he and Gillian moved back to Farnham in 1998. Whilst in Indonesia, Gillian became Treasurer then Chairman of the British Women’s Association, as well as starting up an organisation aimed at helping newly-arrived wives to settle into their new environment. Gillian is now helping to organise Farnham’s annual Heritage Open Days scheme. Her main hobby is singing in the choir and she also enjoys crafts of various kinds.  She has two children, a son and a daughter.  Gillian has always felt very strongly about the importance of dignity and independence for the elderly for as long as possible. As well as being a Trustee and Vice Chair of the Society, Gillian is a member of the Care Committee.

Mr Brian Thomas

Posted on: March 1st, 2016 by RichardOld

Chairman of the Board of Trustees

Brian had a 30-year career with Fluor Corporation, a US based designer, engineer, and builder of international oil, gas, chemical, industrial and infrastructure projects. He held various positions including chief financial officer and chief executive of subsidiary companies in the Middle East, UK and USA.
His career included strategy creation and implementation, acquisitions and business restructuring.

Since taking early retirement in 2007, he has been actively involved in Rotary and enjoys international travel.

His wife, Jacqui is active in the Dempster Trust and The Farnham Support Fund.

They have 4 children; Simon, a GP, Cassie, a Market Research director, Faye, a Commercial Contracts Manager, and Alex, a financial management systems specialist.