Trustee Biographies 

Michael Prideaux has been Chairman of Trustees at Chelsea Physic Garden since January 2015 and a Trustee from July 2012.  He is currently Prime Warden of The Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths and a Trustee of the Goldsmiths’ Centre, where young goldsmiths, silversmiths and jewellers are trained.  He is also Chairman of the Old Etonian Association.  He spent much of his executive career at British American Tobacco, where he was a member of the Management Board and responsible for Corporate and Regulatory Affairs.

Cathy Arnold joined as Trustee in November 2017. She is Deputy Director for Portfolio Management at the Office for National Statistics and Head of Profession for Project Delivery. Previously she was Director of Estates & Operations at the National Portrait Gallery (NPG) and one of her main areas of work was on the Heritage Lottery Fund supported Inspiring People project.  She is an architect and project manager, a member of both the Government Project Delivery Profession and the Government Property Profession and undertakes Gateway Reviews for the Infrastructure & Projects Authority as a Senior High Risk Review Team Leader. 

Cathy is currently President of the Council of Europe’s Ad Hoc Committee of Experts on buildings and represents the UK’s interests in how investment in the Council of Europe’s estate is managed.  Special interest areas include heritage, the arts, conservation and horticulture and Cathy supports a range of charities in these sectors. Her volunteering includes support for Open-City London and the Open Garden Squares programme and she is a member of a number of conservation charities.

Colin Chisholm has had a long career in fund management, until 2017 as an Investment Director at Rathbones and for many years at Jupiter Asset Management as Head of Private Clients and Charities. He is a Trustee of the Royal Society of Literature and is a member of the Chartered Institute for Securities & Investment (MSCI).

Sukie Hemming has had a long career in the arts and heritage sectors, with particular focus on fundraising, most notably as Director of Development at the National Trust and the British Museum.   Her most recent appointment was as Director of Corporate Affairs at the British Museum.   She is a Trustee of English Heritage.

Anna Jobson joined as a Trustee in November 2017. She has worked in the arts and cultural sector for over two decades and is a specialist in strategy and policy development, and change management. She worked for over a decade at Tate, ultimately as Head of the Director's Office, and then went to Arts Council England as Director, Strategy. An international move in 2012 saw Anna undertaking major consulting assignments for the Museum of Contemporary Art, Australia, and the Sydney Opera House, before joining the team at MCA in an interim leadership role. Since moving back to London in 2014, Anna has combined freelance work for a wide range of clients around the world with a change leadership role at the University of Arts London.  

Paul Gray was appointed a Trustee in February 2017. He has over twenty years’ experience of working in the arts and heritage sectors, with specialisms in operations, commercial activity and marketing. He is currently Chief Operating Officer at the National Gallery in London.  Previously he was Palaces Group Director for Historic Royal Palaces at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Prior to this he held roles at the V&A, and Turner Contemporary in Margate. Paul is also a member of St Paul’s Cathedral Council.

Tony Kirkham following an apprenticeship in the forestry industry and 2 years as an arborist, in 1978 Tony started at The Royal Botanic Gardens Kew on the 3 year Diploma course, graduating in 1981.In 2001 he became Head of the Arboretum and Horticultural Services, responsible for the management and curation of over 14,000 trees in the collections and, since 2014, he curates and manages the hardy herbaceous collections as well.

He has participated and led several plant collecting expeditions around the globe.

Tony featured in the BBC2 series “A Year at Kew” and presented the “Trees that made Britain” for BBC2. He represents Kew on the RHS Woody Plant committee and awards committee, the International Dendrology Society, and is a trustee of the Yorkshire Arboretum and TROBI, (Tree Register of the British Isles). 

Patricia Lankester works in the areas of learning and participation in cultural heritage, and grant-making.  She taught in North London comprehensive schools and also in the USA.  She has been Head of Education at the National Trust and Director of the Paul Hamlyn Foundation and is a former Trustee of the Heritage Lottery Fund, the Foundling Museum, the Sage Music Centre in Gateshead, the National Gallery and the Tate.

She is a current a Trustee of the Clore Social Leadership Programme and the Holburne Museum, Bath, a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company’s Learning Panel and of the Tate Britain Advisory Council, a founder member of the Cultural Learning Alliance, and adviser to various grant making bodies.

Lady Arabella Lennox-Boyd has run her landscape design business since 1969 designing over 400 gardens worldwide and in the UK, including six Chelsea Flower Show Gold medal gardens and best of show in 1998.  Her commissions range from small town gardens to large historical country landscapes.

She is on the Council and on the Scientific Panel of the International Dendrology Society, a Trustee of The Tree Register and of the Yorkshire Arboretum, a member of the RHS Woody Plant Committee and Patron of the Painshill Trust.  She served as a Trustee of Kew Gardens for nine years, was a member of The Historic Parks and Gardens Panel of English Heritage – and sat on the Heritage Panel for six contemporary heritage gardens – and was a founding member of the Marin McLaren Horticultural Scholarship.

Michael McGonigle has been a Trustee of the Chelsea Physic Garden since 2014.  He has recently retired from an executive career in fund management and venture capital, principally in the property sector with Touche Remnant, Lazard Brothers and his own company Reach Consultants.  He had a long-term involvement with The Tussauds Group and the online gallery, and has held a number of non-executive positions as a Trustee and Director.

Nghi Nguyen has been a Trustee since May 2016.  Following a career in investment banking, he founded Velo, an innovative Vietnamese restaurant concept in London Bridge.  He worked in corporate finance for Salmon Smith Barney / Citigroup between 1998 – 2007, and for Goldman Sachs in its real estate private equity between 2007 – 2008.  He holds a BSc and MSc in Economics from the London School of Economics.

Sarah Speller was appointed a Trustee of the Chelsea Physic Garden in May 2013. Sarah’s executive career was in legal and financial services, principally working at Schroders.  Latterly, Sarah has focused on roles in the not-for-profit sector; she was a director of the Balance Charitable Foundation for Unclaimed Assets, a Trustee of Eureka! and has a particular interest in governance issues.

Annual Report 2018