Trustees’ Biographies

Under the Articles of the Charity, trustees are elected for 3 year terms; however, many of the trustees have become long term members and supporters of the Charity, serving multiple terms.

President: Mr. Thomas Bowring

Thomas is the great, great grandson of Sir Thomas Storey and son of the late Mary Bowring (nee Storey) whom he succeeded as President of Westfield. He has been a Trustee since April 1989 and was the Honoury Treasurer for many of those years before being appointed President in April 2014.Thomas served 5 years with the Royal Green Jackets and a further 12 years in the Territorial Army. Qualifying as a Chartered Surveyor (Land Agency) in 1979, he now runs his own company. He was appointed as High Sheriff of Lancashire 2002-3 and served as Deputy Lieutenant in 2003. He is married with two daughters.

Chairman: Dr David Elliott

David graduated with a BSc in medical science at St Andrews in 1972 before going on to gain a MBChB from Manchester University in 1975 and, subsequently, a Post graduate certificate in General Practice from the university of Central Lancaster in 2008. David retired after a career in General Practice within the city of Lancaster in 2012.David has been a trustee of Water Lyon House (Therapeutic Community for ex Drug addicts) since 1985, a Trustee of Cancer care since 2000 and a Governor of Rossall School since 2013. David became a trustee of Westfield War Memorial Village in 2000 and became Chairman in 2013.

Treasurer: Mrs Julie Hardy

Julie attended Ripley St Thomas School in Lancaster before entering a career in banking with the Nat West and then becoming a branch manager with the Nationwide Building Society. In 1989, a career change saw her working for Northern Counties housing association until 1996 during which time she forged links with Westfield and gained a valuable understanding of the social housing sector. Julie became a Trustee and Treasurer of the War Memorial Village in 2007. Married to David, her interests include theatre, film and art as well teaching keep fit classes.

Company Secretary: Mrs Amanda Stretch

With an Honours Degree in Social Sciences and a Diploma in Education, Amanda’s affiliation with the Village started in 1987 when she visited her then future husband working there. In 1993 she joined Northern Counties Housing Association and started working at Westfield initially as caretaker and later as the Estate Manager. Amanda has worked for the Charity as Company Secretary since November2003. A volunteer for the Lancashire Constabulary, Amanda received a Long Service Award for her work in the Castle Ward in which Westfield Village is situated.


Anthony Rickards Collinson

Qualifying as a solicitor in 1972, Anthony was a director of Whiteside Knowles solicitors, now part of JWK Solicitors Ltd. His broad career has spanned many areas of law and he is now focussed on the administration of estates and trusts where, often as a trustee, he manages extensive assets on behalf of clients. Having been Secretary of the Law Society for 10 years, Anthony is currently the Chairman of the Society’s ‘Private Client Executive Committee’ and Chairman of the Sub Committee which published ‘Charities and Beneficiaries’.Formerly a trustee of St. Johns Hospice, Antony is a trustee of Lakeland Arts and the Hulme educational charity. Joining Westfield War Memorial Village in 1992, Anthony is now the Vice Chairman. Anthony’s interests include country pursuits, antiques, art, woodland planting and conservation.

Colonel (Retired) Peter Dew

Educated at Taunton School, Peter attended the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst and commissioned into The King’s Own Royal Regiment in 1954. Following numerous regimental and staff appointments, he was Commanding Officer of the 4th Battalion the King’s Own Royal Border Regiment from 1977 to 1980. On leaving from regular service in 1984, he became Commandant of Halton Training Camp until retiring in 2000.In retirement Peter has busied himself with charity work and has been a trustee of Westfield Memorial Village since 1983. He is currently the company’s internal auditor. A keen sportsman, his interests include walking, gardening and travelling. Married to Pamela, they have 2 grown up sons, Mark and Myles.

Mrs Carol Johnston

Carol has been a wife, mother and grandmother for 45 years (not all at the same time to start with) thus qualifying her to do most things; first aid, catering (sometimes for very large numbers), nannying (both children and adults), chauffeuring, teaching, arbitration, counselling, budgeting, entertaining, housekeeping, dog walking, ferret feeding, pony tack cleaning and myriad other tasks that some turn into careers. She has been on nine charity committees, from two of which she received her long service medal, ran an activity club for the disabled (now in its 25th year, and which included abseiling with wheel chairs!) and have been a Trustee for Westfield Village for 2 years. Carol’s excellent organisational skills are regularly called upon for events at Westfield.

Colonel (Retired) Chris Owen

Chris retired from the Army in 2012 after 36 years. This time included command of a Regular Battalion and senior positions in the MoD. He gained experience in strategic planning and financial management and of running large budgets. He is now Regimental Secretary of the Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment where he is responsible for running its daily affairs and is Chief Executive of its charity. He remains very closely involved with the needs of servicemen and veterans. He is also a member of the North West Veterans Advisory and Pensions Committee. Has been a trustee since 2011.

Councillor Susie Charles

Susie was born in Malaya whilst her father was seconded from the 4th Queen’s Own Hussars to fight in the “Emergency”, and the family lived in various places in Malaya and Singapore until her father was posted to England when she was eight. She was educated at a convent boarding school near Sherborne, Dorset, and after completing her education there, she went to a secretarial college in Oxford. After working as a secretary for a year she went to Barcelona for two years, initially working as an “au pair” and then as a translator. On return to England she worked as a PA in London for 11 years. It was there that she met her late husband. They led a slightly nomadic existence, moving around England as Richard built up a successful business in the food industry.

Susie’s Lancashire roots come from her mother (Mary, née Sandeman, who originally came from Ellel) and Susie and Richard and their three children (two boys and a girl) moved there in 1997. Since 1999 Susie has been a councillor on Lancaster City Council. She is also a County Councillor and was first elected in 2005. She is President of the British Red Cross in Lancashire, having been appointed in 2015.