Key Speakers

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

Clinton Rogers

Broadcaster and journalist

Clinton, who lives in Bradford-on-Tone with his wife Joanne, was just 16 when he started his journalistic career on the Wellington Weekly News, having left Court Fields School.

From there he moved to the Somerset County Gazette and then on to the Bristol Evening Post, working in the Taunton office. After four there he began his career with the BBC.

Some years later he was responsible for launching BBC Somerset Sound, the county’s first radio station.

“Looking back I would probably count that as the proudest moment of my career. And to see it flourishing now fills me with pride,” said Clinton.

There was a two year stint with the old HTV West, before returning to the BBC to set up a Somerset operation for Points West.

Journalism has, he said, given him “everything he could wish for …and more” - assignments to war zones, interviews with celebrities including Paul McCartney and the late Sir Roger Moore as well as Prime Ministers and international sportsmen and women.

He added: “If I could wind the clock back I wouldn’t change a thing. The career has been amazing.

"We’ve exposed wrongdoing, helped people in difficult situations and shone a light on some wonderful stories.

"It really has been a privilege and I owe Points West a debt of gratitude for putting up with me for so long."

As for the future, he says he has no plans to be idle.

Connor Roe MBE

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

Connor Roe MBE is no stranger to asking the question ‘Why not?’. With a natural curiosity and thirst for adventure, this question has repeatedly come up, followed swiftly by let’s go it! This approach quickly drew him to the mystical underground world. Whether it’s abseiling, climbing up waterfalls or squeezing through tight sections, he will be there with a laugh and smile. Driven by his passion for exploration, the unique skills required for British cave diving were a natural progression. Operating within these hostile environments has required innovation, a dynamic approach and composure. These constantly developing skills have aided him in cave exploration across the globe, including remote, multi-day underground camps in Peña Colorada, Mexico. In 2018 he would call upon serval of these skills as a diver during the Tham Luang Cave, Thailand Cave Rescue. The sole focus of rescuing 12 boys and their coach from beyond the flooded passages.


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.

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Sam Chapman

Chairman, Inner Wheel District 20

Sam has been a member of Inner Wheel Club of Bath since 1990, having been introduced to the club by a work colleague. Once there, she found a great deal of fun and friendship and the strength of a women’s group. As a member of Bath Inner Wheel Club, she has held the posts of Club Correspondent, Vice President and President before being nominated to Chair of District 20 for the year 2022-23.
Sam originates from North Nottinghamshire. Her mother is Italian and her father English. This meant life at home had very much an Italian influence, and whilst rich in its diversity, not always appreciated in post war England, as it is today.
Her early career started with art school training and ambitions to be a commercial fashion artist and dress pattern cutter. It was as a student looking to earn some much needed income that she secured a residential post, working with children with learning disabilities. After a year, she moved south, where she continued to work with mainly adolescent children, who had come into contact with the law.
Working with these young people, that early art training proved a good vehicle for communicating with them, along with other interests in walking, camping expeditions and netball. This impromptu change of career led to Bristol University to qualify as a Social Worker and into the work of child protection, working in Bristol, Somerset and Wiltshire. This entailed working alongside police child protection units and across welfare agencies, investigating and managing children (and their families) who were deemed to be at risk.
Other positions held, included attachments to a GP practice, secondary school and a child guidance clinic and later in her career, managing Workforce Development in Local Authority.
Qualifying in adult education, provided another new direction lecturing/training social work graduates, courses in Further Education colleges as well as the private sector.
After retiring from the Local Authority, Workforce Development, Sam set up her own Training and Consultancy business in Children’s Services, providing training across the range of welfare agencies in England, finally retiring 10 years later.
Today, as well as Inner Wheel activities Sam enjoys, swimming, gardening, life drawing, not forgetting the joys of 3 grand-daughters, all under 5yrs.

Andy Oakley

Comedian Entertainer


Torquay based Black Country born Andy Oakley is a very experienced comedian who has been working professionally in the entertainment industry for over 42 years. His credits include cruise ships, luxury hotels world wide, TV, holiday centres, clubs home and abroad and theatre including 17 years in the laughter shows at the Babbacombe Theatre for which he received much critical acclaim. The easy friendly, relaxed manner which is his style is always a sure fire winner with any audience young or old. If you are looking for an evening of pure entertainment you need look no further than this very talented man.xt element