President, Patrons, Trustees & Officers

Somerset Churches Trust is a registered charity and we have a fantastic team at the helm. To get in touch with any member of the Trust, please use our contact form in the first instance and we will be sure to point you in the right direction.

President of the trust

Mrs Annie Maw, HM Lord Lieutenant of Somerset

Annie Maw was born into a naval family in Henley on Thames. She was educated at the School of St Helen and St Katharine in Abingdon. She trained to be a State Registered Nurse at Westminster Hospital in London where she then worked as a Staff Nurse. She married a St Bartholomew’s Hospital doctor and, when he took an appointment as a consultant surgeon at the Bristol Royal Infirmary in 1973, they moved to Somerset where they have lived ever since.

Vice Presidents

Jennifer Beazley • Jane Venner-Pack


Lady Gass • DCVO • The Rt Revd Ruth Worsley, Bishop of Taunton • The Rt Revd Declan Ronan Lang, Bishop of Clifton • The Rt Revd Dom Aiden Bellenger • Kevin McCloud MBE

Our Trustees & Treasurer

Trust chairman & trustee

Dr Axel Palmer

Axel’s varied career included banking, insolvency, law and as an academic lecturing and writing on fraud, bribery and corruption. He has been a Church Treasurer and Churchwarden.

Membership Recruitment and Ride+Stride Coordinator & trustee

Philip Skelhorn

A personal and professional interest in historic buildings generally and churches in particular attracted Philip to join Somerset Churches Trust in 2015 and to become a Trustee in 2020.

Grants Secretary and Area Assessors & trustee

Anthony Sutcliffe

Anthony is a retired chartered surveyor and has lived in Somerset for nearly 20 years. He has a great interest in places of worship, both at home and overseas, and the importance of their contribution to community integration.He has been a trustee since 2017.


The Venerable Simon Hill

Before his ordination Simon taught at schools in Zimbabwe, Northumberland and Malawi. He moved to Somerset in 2003 and was appointed Archdeacon of Taunton in 2016.


Bob Croft

Bob is Head of Historic Environment and Estates at the South West Heritage Trust. He studied archaeology at Leeds University and was appointed County Archaeologist for Somerset in 1986.


Tony Davies

Tony is an almost-retired management consultant, who has worked in financial services for over 40 years. He has lived in Bath for the last 8 years.


Emma Brown

Emma is the Church Buildings Adviser for Bath & Wells Diocese, providing expertise on the care and maintenance, adaptation, and development of church buildings as both places of worship and vibrant community spaces.

Get involved with the Trust

There are many ways you can get involved; from attending our events, raising sponsorship funds for Ride+Stride, donating, becoming a member or leaving a lasting legacy.

If you would like to join the board of Trustees and Officers, we are actively seeking expressions of interest. We are looking to fill some key positions including a Chair of Trustees to lead overall direction and strategy, a Membership Secretary and a Trust Secretary. Please do contact us for details.

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