Key Speakers

Sophie Banham

Professor Alice Roberts

Professor Alice Roberts is a biological anthropologist, author and broadcaster. Having originally studied and practised medicine, she then became a university lecturer, teaching clinical anatomy and undertaking research in biological anthropology. 

She is especially interested in the intersection between biology, archaeology and history, the impact of ancient genomics in archaeology, and the interaction between humans and the environment through time.
She is passionate about public engagement with university research and teaching. She has been Professor of Public Engagement in Science at the University of Birmingham since 2012.
Alice has presented well over a hundred television programmes, on subjects ranging from biology and archaeology and history. Her television debut came as a human bone expert on Channel 4’s Time Team, in 2001. After presenting Coast on BBC2, she went on to write and present a range of BBC series, including The Incredible Human Journey, Origins of Us, Prehistoric Autopsy and the long-running archaeology series, Digging for Britain, as well as several Horizon programmes. She also presents Britain’s Most Historic Towns on Channel 4.
Alice has written ten popular science books, including The Incredible Human Journey, Evolution: The Human Story, The Incredible Unlikeliness of Being, Tamed: Ten species that changed our world, and Ancestors: The Prehistory of Britain in Seven Burials. Her new book, Buried: An alternative history of the first millennium in Britain, will be published by Simon & Schuster in May 2022. 
Alice has presented many radio programmes, including the environment strand Costing the Earth on Radio 4, and her own ten-part series about the history of anatomy: Bodies. 
In 2020, Alice Roberts was awarded the Royal Society’s first David Attenborough Prize for Public Engagement. 

Martin Thatcher


In 1904, William Thatcher founded Thatchers Cider on his Somerset Farm. Today, his great-grandson Martin Thatcher runs the fourth-generation family business, which still has its home on the very same farm where William made his cider.
Maintaining the heritage and traditions of the family business remains close to Martin’s heart. And as a rural company, he knows just how important it is to protect the world around us. So he has a firm focus on creating world class cider sustainably and maintaining the business’s Somerset orchards not just to be the source of the highest quality apples, but also a rich haven for biodiversity.

Since 2015 Martin has been a Trustee of the Bath and West Society, a great Somerset organisation that works to promote and represent farming, agriculture and food & drink production in his home county.

His personal experience of learning all aspects of the cider making business from an early age has led Martin to be a firm believer in skills development, encouraging people to fulfil their potential, in particular through apprenticeships.

With his family Martin has established the Thatchers Foundation, a charitable trust which supports good causes in Somerset. And he has been honoured to take up the role of Deputy Lieutenant of Somerset, and through this position looks forward to being able to support all those who live and work in the county.
Martin has been married to his wife Anne for 25 years, and their grown-up children, Eleanor and Peter, are both now working within the business.

Paul Wooding

Chloe Ball-Hopkins

Para athlete archer who now focuses on media work and disability.

Connor Roe MBE

One of the team that rescued the Thai boys football team from a cave.


Hyppolite Ntigurirwa


Hyppolite is an authour, artist, scholar, and founder of Be the Peace, an organisation focusing on halting the intergenerational transmission of hate and to promote the power of cross-generational healing. 
A child survivor of the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi, in 2019 he envisioned and conducted the “Be the Peace Walk,” a 100-day performance piece in which he walked across Rwanda to commemorate 25 years since the end of the genocide.Hyppolite has worked as Arts Manager for the British Council in Rwanda, focused on disability rights and societal inclusion.
 A 2020 Yale World Fellow, a 2021 Human Rights Fellow at Yale Law School, a Peace Ambassador for European Commission and One Young World and is currently completing his PhD with the Centre for Trust, Peace, and Social Relations in Coventry. 

His book with Andrew Crofts “A Boy Called Hyppo”shares his genocide experiences, and journey to forgiveness. Two films:TheYoung Leaders - One Young World Stories (2021) and Something to Give (2020) covers his work with genocide survivors and perpetrators, and their descendants, on projects to halt intergenerational transmission of hate throughout Rwanda. 

Ric Canham

Ric Canham PHF

D1200 Somerset, West Dorset, West Wiltshire
Joined Rotary in 2004 in a traditional Club and was President in 2009/10. This was when President RI John Kenny used the theme ‘The future of Rotary is in your hands’, in retrospect, a very clever man.

Held District literacy post, team member for District Conference 2013, AG for three years then was persuaded to take on DG role but personal circumstances led to me leaving Rotary in 2016.
Wanting to return in 2018, I was not willing to return to a traditional way of Rotary, so formed my own group and went looking for a sponsor Club for us to be part of as a satellite - and so we were sponsored by Burnham-on-Sea.
I took on District Membership team leader immediately after re-joining as I have strong views on how Rotary needs to adapt to the 21st century. Persuaded by my District colleagues to again consider the DG role and as lightning doesn’t strike twice, here I am!
I am a founder trustee of the Red Robin Trust, a charity set up to help all those affected by Ollier’s disease and Maffucci Syndrome, I have undertaken various strange (and sometimes tough) charity challenges; worm charming, paddling a bathtub from Bath to Bristol, Exmoor Challenge (12 mile walk), Templar Way challenge (18 mile walk Haytor to Shaldon), three-legged cross country run etc.I am currently a trustee of the Axbridge Town Trust, set up in 1889 to manage the Town assets gifted to the Trust including our Town Hall and Town Square. Also, in town I am a founder member of the local Speedwatch team
My working life has been spent mainly in engineering of one form or another including seven years testing various military and civilian aircraft engines including the Olympus for Concorde. The majority of my time however has been spent in the motor industry working for Alfa Romeo, Vauxhall, Ford, Mercedes (truck and passenger car) but as a systems specialist, I did not sell or fix cars but I do know how they work.
My wife, CEO of a multi-academy trust, and I are separated but keep in close touch and our daughter is an assistant head in a large West Midlands secondary academy.


Phil Dyer

Phil is a good Leeds Lad and proud of his Yorkshire roots he now lives in St Helens Merseyside as a result of business. Phil is Married to Sarah and has been for over 20 years.

Phil is a builder, he has worked across the UK as a Project and Design Manager on multimillion pound projects. In 2000 moving into property development, concentrating on out of town retail developments. In 2006 Phil moved to Liverpool and joined a business, as partner. Phil subsequently sold the business into a larger North of England contracting business where he is currently the Marketing and Business Development Director.
Phil’s Rotary career beginning in 2009 when he was introduced to Rotary Prescot by his Business Partners father, Tom, inviting him ‘out for tea’… Phil became Club President in 2011/12 and is now serving his 4th term in office for the Rotary year 2021/22.
Phil enjoys service and was the lead of the local Rotary fireworks event for more than 10 years. The evening was a much loved local community event and has raised over £200,000. Just before lockdown Rotary Prescot with Mother club Rotary St Helens held a meal pack with Rise Against Hunger packing 62,000 meals in 4 hours, raising £25,000 in 8 weeks.

Phil’s district career started in the MPRC Committee, later chairing the committee for 3 years and 3 further years as Public Image Team Leader. Phil was appointed to be an Assistant Rotary International Public Image Coordinator in 2018 and sits on the Rotary Great Britain and Ireland Public Image Team. Phil was a co-founder of the critically acclaimed ‘thinkdifferently’ membership / public image strategy which was born out the concepts of Rotary 2. Phil is the current membership Team Lead for District 1285.
Phil has been the technical lead on Rotary GB & I productions; Membership Summit, Champions of Change, Young Citizen and has been Co Team Technical Lead for 5 Multi District PETS.
Phil was the producer of the Together Talks series of conversations with Nicki Scott, Dave King and Luke Addison, broadcast over the pandemic period. A creation of over 30 interviews with thought leaders from across the globe. 
Finally, Phil takes up a position on the inaugural board member position for Rotary Great Britain & Ireland for two years in July 2022.