Who We Are

Chairman – Nigel Arch

Worked for 40 years in museums and historic houses, first as Head of the Department of Art at the National Army Museum, Chelsea,then as Keeper of Military History at the Castle Museum York, then ( 1982) Curator of the Court Dress Collection, Kensington Palace,from 1986 Administrator then Director Kensington Palace and also from 2004 with responsibility for Kew Palace. He retired in April 2012. MA (War Studies) King’s College London, 1971, AMA (Associate of the Museums Association), 1977. Apppointed LVO (Lieutenent of the Victorian Order) by  The Queen, 2008 . Published various articles on military uniform and ceremonial dress. Co-author ( with J Marschner) of Splendour at Court, Dressing for Royal occasions since 1700  and The Royal Wedding Dresses

Exhibitions – Kathy Atherton

Kathy is an ex-city lawyer who wrote H and I for the Oxford English Dictionary in a past life. She now writes history, in particular of the Holmwood area, and is working on a book on the campaign for the vote for woman in the Surrey Hills. She is responsible for “history” at the Museum, including walks, talks and Exhibition planning.

Marketing and Communications – David Burton

After graduating in Law at the University of Leeds, David just carried on doing his vacation job, which was in market research, and is still doing it until he decides what he really wants to do.  Having been founder of one and a director in two other leading research companies, and working within two major communications groups, he decided to opt out of the London commute to set up his consultancy locally.  A local resident for 40 years and local business owner for 10 years, he thought he knew the area reasonably well, but joining the Museum prior to its reopening has opened up whole new vistas.  David is in the marketing and communications team, working with local media and producing a range of publicity materials, including our little book on The Dorking Cockerel.

Facilities Manager – Mike Gooch

Mike began his working career in engineering and became the Managing Director of a company offering administration services to companies within both the construction industry and the automotive industry. When deciding to look for a change in career he moved to the transport industry as a Insurance and Risk Manager and then Health and Safety Manager for a London Bus operator. In 2010 he was medically retired from full time work to fill his time became an amateur radio operator and also began researching local transport history – currently researching the Old Dorking Bus Garage going back to 1830’s.

He is currently using his expertise in Health and Safety and Risk Management to volunteer as Facilities Manager for the Museum.

Archivist – Jane le Cluse

Chartered Librarian with an MA in History. Last postition: International Records Manager for a major oil & gas company. As Hon. Archivist she is responsible for maintaining and conserving the collections; cataloguing new accessions. Digitising catalogue for future online access; doing research.

Curator – Clare Flanagan 

In the past she has been a Medical PA, a Barista and a Gym manager, however she eventually discovered History, obtaining a History degree and then a MA in Museum Studies.  She travelled from sunny Newcastle upon Tyne to Epsom and eventually ended up in Dorking Museum being part of the curatorial team.  Her new skill is looking after the photographs and she helps Lisa with Outreach, listening to and recording people’s life stories. She does plenty of talking herself, so don’t mention the war or you will be there all day!

Curator of Paintings – Sandra Wedgwood

Sandra Wedgwood was educated at the Courtauld Institute and her first job was with Professor Nikolaus Pevsner on his series ‘The Buildings of England’. For many years she was the Architectural Archivist in the House of Lords Record Office. She is the author of many books including a studies of Pugin and a comprehensive history of St Martin’s Church in Dorking.

Librarian – Susannah Horne

Used to work in publishing and now works in the energy sector.  Her role at the Museum is to look after the library, which provides an excellent resource for anyone studying local history.  She has a degree in History & Archaeology and an MA in Medieval Studies, and still likes to wield a trowel given the opportunity.

Education – Lisa Geelhood

Lisa has worked in education, in one way or another, all of her career.  She has taught all ages, from early years through to adults, which comes in handy in the museum  where learners may be school children or families or people with special interests.  She has an MEd in Creative Arts in Education and an MA in Museums and Galleries in Education. She has worked in many art museums and local history museums.  Her role at Dorking Museum includes developing loans boxes for schools and resources for teachers, contributing hands-on and fun things for the displays, planning and putting on activities for families and young people, going out into the community to work with all sorts of groups and anything else that contributes to people’s enjoyment and learning in and through the museum.


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