Board of Trustees

John Nunn (Chair of Trustees)
John has had a lifelong interest in Archaeology and History. He was a founder member of the Sudbury Historical Society during which time he participated in various Archaeological digs in the area, including the Roman Way dig in 1970.  John co-founded the Long Melford Heritage Centre in 2012. He has been a Parish and District Councillor for 12 years and is currently the Babergh District Council representative on the Suffolk Museums management board.

John was – and remains – the driving force behind the foundation of the Long Melford Heritage Centre. He is passionate about the positive impacts that culture and heritage have on society. 

John would love to transform the Centre into the first class history museum Long Melford so badly needs.

David Burch (Trustee)
A former policy director at the Essex Chamber of Commerce, David has significant experience in working with Boards and Executive Committees, bringing a deep expertise of understanding regulatory expectations and alignment, transformation and cost optimisation.

David has had a strong passion for history since the age of eight when he went on a school visit to Grimes Graves in Norfolk. Hoping to forge a career in the museum world he found himself edged into the world of business and settled for volunteering.  From the age of 12, he started helping at the Museum of East Anglian Life in Stowmarket where he continued for a further 30 years until he moved to Long Melford. His particular interests are both early history and industrial archaeology, including steam engines in all forms. In fact, he met his wife on the back of a traction engine at a steam rally. 

In addition to his extensive business skills, David will bring to his role as Board member the experience of welcoming and growing audiences with diverse perspectives.

Kenneth Dodd (Trustee)
With a background in Engineering, Ken began his career as a Design Draughtsman, working on projects such as Concorde, before he became the Chairman of a group of Trade Companies. However, Archaeology remained his raison d’etre. Having taken part in his first excavation aged 13, he found a previously undiscovered Roman Settlement the following year. Ken went on to conduct excavations and supervise at major sites around the country, including the Roman Theatre in Colchester and the Lunt Roman Fort near Coventry. Ken has led the Centre’s Archaeological Team since 2012.

Ken says, “Although Long Melford has long been recognised as a Roman Settlement with countless evidence, little evaluation had been done. Now, combining this with information from recent excavations, we are for the first-time piecing together a picture of Iron Age and Roman Long Melford.”  

Ken joined the Board of Trustees to help develop the Centre as an Archaeological Hub. He believes it’s the ideal showcase for the team’s discoveries, providing an opportunity to inspire others and introduce young people to their heritage.  

David Gevaux (Trustee & Treasurer)
David is a published author and holds both a First-Class Honours Degree and a Master’s Degree in History from the University of London. David has been involved with the Long Melford Heritage Centre since moving to the village in 2012.  He is a keen amateur archaeologist and has curated dozens of displays at the Heritage Centre, primarily relating to the local community’s involvement during the First World War.  

David has a special interest in collections management, interpretation, policies and procedures, and governance. He is active in research and day-to-day management of the Centre’s Collections.

Elizabeth Haywood (Trustee)
Elizabeth brings experience in organisational leadership, sales and marketing, events management, catering management and charity administration. She has an extensive background in international hotel operations, both in Rome and New York City. She has also worked as the administrator of a large, non-profit educational organisation in Greenwich, Connecticut.

Having grown up in a 400+ year old house in Long Melford, she has enjoyed a lifelong interest in the history of the village and its residents. Since returning she has been an active community volunteer and has supported the Heritage Centre since its foundation in 2012.

Richard Michette (Trustee)
Richard is a retired optician who has lived in Long Melford since 1976.  A long standing Parish Councillor of over 30 years, he is also a former Babergh District Councillor. 

He has broad interests in the Arts and Culture which he combines with his great love of the natural world and conservation. Richard has always enjoyed an interest in history and been a member of the Long Melford Historical Society for many years, serving the society as a committee member and treasurer. He is an ardent member of the Centre’s Archaeological Team and has taken part in several excavations over the past ten years. 

Richard brings to the Board of Trustees his dedication and commitment to serving the local community and his enthusiasm for safeguarding the future of the Long Melford Heritage Centre.

Mary Russell (Trustee)
Born in India, due to WW2, Mary spent many years living overseas, travelling extensively before settling in Long Melford in 1978. An enthusiastic family historian, she was delighted to discover her mother’s family originated from Sudbury, Cavendish and Clare. 

A former Science Teacher, Mary has also been a lifelong volunteer involved with a range of charities. She is passionate about the local environment, and engaging and enthusing others about the importance of our natural and cultural heritage. Mary believes museums can establish a sense of place and have the potential to enable a broadening of identity. She has a deep interest in how heritage can provide links between old familiar worlds and new worlds by using collections to compare the familiar and the unfamiliar.

Mary says, “I find the local history of our lovely village endlessly fascinating and becoming a Trustee is an opportunity to give something back.”

Elaine Symonds (Trustee)
Elaine has worked in the heritage sector for fifteen years, primarily in communications. She is an experienced project manager, and has particular expertise in museum development, exhibitions organisation, interpretation, visitor experience and fundraising. Previously a teacher of English at secondary level, Elaine is passionate about the value of museums to communities and their ability to inspire young people and influence learning outcomes. 

She joined the Board of Trustees to support the Centre’s development and to help secure its future.