Meet the Trustees
Harry Spry-Leverton – Chair and Honorary Librarian
Harry travelled the world for five years as a young man and had a variety of odd jobs in odd places to finance it. This was followed by several years of soldiering in The Light Infantry before attending university as a mature student. He remained a Reservist for many years and was mobilised for operations in The Gulf in 2003. However, a degree in International Politics and Librarianship led to thirty years as Librarian of two of the country’s leading independent schools and an intimate knowledge of the Dewey Decimal Cataloguing system, catalogue cards and the challenges associated with smaller and specialist libraries. He returned to his native Cornwall some years ago and is settled in Penryn. He sails a Shrimper on the Fal and is an enthusiastic gig rower.
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David Falcon, Vice Chair
Born and schooled in Cornwall, David left Helston Grammar School in 1964 to seek fame and fortune. Failing on both counts, but lucky in love, he returned to live in Penzance in 2021. Whilst away he studied in the UK and USA, held a variety of academic posts in higher education, filled senior posts in educational administration with Humberside County Council and the ILEA and was Director-General at the Royal Institute of Public Administration. This led to 20 years in international development, advising governments on strengthening their public administration systems, particularly those wanting to join the EU. He is helping the Librarian digitise the Morrab map archive, is enjoying many of the cultural activities offered locally and is a keen amateur photographer.
Paget MacDonald – Honorary Secretary
Paget’s professional background is in law, as a Solicitor in a City practice where she specialised in litigation and dispute resolution. She is now involved in commercial property and manages a portfolio comprising a range of commercial properties across Devon and Cornwall. She has a particular interest in art history and from 2006 to 2017 was Company Secretary and a Trustee at a not for profit arts organisation in Farnham, Surrey, which supports emerging artists through its exhibiting and professional development programmes. She has a strong family connection to West Cornwall, and Penzance in particular, and following her move to the area in 2017 is looking forward to making a contribution to the community and to Morrab Library.
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Myfanwy Barrett CB – Honorary Treasurer
Myfanwy is an experienced public sector finance director and a qualified accountant (CIPFA). She was the Finance Director at a London borough, and more recently Managing Director of Corporate Services at the House of Commons. She moved to Penzance in 2019 and now works as a Non-Executive Director. She is a board member at Ocean Housing and the Pensions Ombudsman (from May 2021); and alongside this has a cultural portfolio that includes being Treasurer of Newlyn Art Gallery and The Exchange and Chair of the Tate St Ives Members Committee. Myfanwy’s passion is art, particularly modernism, and she is studying art history in her spare time, as well as being an aspiring cryptic crossword setter.
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Christina Carson, Trustee
Chartered Librarian and front desk volunteer at the Morrab Library, Christina began her professional career in the 1980s when she worked as a library assistant at Penzance Public Library. She went on to have 3 children, a brief sojourn into farming, and then on to study for a Library & Information degree. Soon progressing to the role of Library Manager at St Ives and St Just in 2007, she then moved to a senior management position in 2011 at the University Campus Library at Penryn. Having retired from full time work in 2020 she continues to mentor colleagues in their professional registration applications, and is treasurer of CILIP SW. Being an avid swimmer and horse rider keeps her smiling.
Peter Chapman – Trustee
After graduating from Bristol University in 1980, Peter’s career in television began at the BBC. Moving to Tyne Tees in Newcastle he became a director of arts documentaries. He left Tyne Tees and, with his wife Jennifer, formed Lightyears Films. Over the next thirteen years Peter made arts films for ITV, Channel 4 and the BBC, a number of these were screened at international film festivals. Peter also has an MA in screenwriting from Royal Holloway University of London. Away from television Peter was a Samaritan volunteer in Newcastle and east London for ten years. Peter has a passion for art house films and is a committee member of the Penwith Film Society. He also loves swimming in Penzance Lido and spending time in the Library, which exercises a mysterious but enduring hold over him.
Victoria Clare, Trustee
Victoria has been working in the not for profit sector for 23 years, latterly as a CEO of various health charities in the UK and internationally. She is currently CEO of Ovacome – the national ovarian cancer support charity. Over the years Victoria has been a trustee of several charities and has a MSc in NGO management. She has been living between Mousehole and other places for the last 30 years and has spent a great deal of time studying and working in the Hedgeland Room.
Richard Davies, Trustee
Richard has spent much of his working life advising politicians, of various sorts, in the UK and overseas. Post-devolution, he led the Government Departments responsible for all cultural matters in Wales (including libraries and museums), for education and skills, and then for public service reform. As a consultant and non-executive director, Richard remains extensively involved in professional regulation and organisational development. As a trustee his interests in housing and community have taken him to the Nationwide Foundation and to Carnegie (UK), and as an academic he teaches currently on social policy, governance and ethics. He is an all-season daily swimmer.
David Holmes, Trustee
A graduate of Cambridge University (Geography), David has recently retired to Penzance after a career in town planning and surveying, including establishing his own firm in North Oxfordshire. He set up a town planning consultancy in semi-retirement from 2012 – 2019 before fulfilling the dream and moving to Penzance in January 2020; just in time for Lockdown! David is very interested in art history which he studied at Oxford University, and he is also very keen on architectural history. Since moving from Warwickshire David is a Trustee of Penzance U3A and he volunteers at the Penlee Gallery.
Paul Phillips, Trustee
Paul was born at Leedstown near Hayle, and has enjoyed a number of roles throughout his career – police officer, hotelier in Porthleven, driving instructor (teaching no fewer than 1,000 people), a Cornwall County Councillor, and founding a successful firm of Water Engineers, not to mention a seasonal security post at Flambards, with a two year break during the time he was Mayor of Helston! Paul cared for his beloved wife Freda for many years until she died in 2018. He pursues a number of pastimes, including painting, and he is currently the Federation of Old Cornwall Societies Dialect Recorder. In 2018 Paul received the Grand Bard’s personal Awen Community Award, and in 2019 he was invited to become a Bard of the Cornish Gorsedh for his outstanding work with Cornish Dialect, taking the Bardic name, Kaffler Rannyeth (Gatherer of Dialect).