I graduated as a civil engineer from Manchester University in 1971. Lorna and I met shortly after, travelled overland to India via Afghanistan on honeymoon and then settled in northern Scotland.
For many years I headed up the design and construction team of the engineering department of the local council for the Western Isles (Outer Hebrides), then spent five years as Western Isles Manager for the North of Scotland Water Authority. I was subsequently self-employed for 10 years, mostly working on the supervision of dams. We have lived on the Isle of Lewis in the Western Isles for 36 years and, for most of that time, ran a croft with small numbers of cattle.
As a trustee, I am able to bring project management experience, financial skills and a genuine affection for and knowledge of developing countries gained from travelling independently on our holidays each winter.
I’ve lived in the north of Scotland most of my life, and brought up our two daughters on our family croft on the Isle of Lewis. Until recently, I did most of the work with the stock and still keep a large organic vegetable garden.
In 2000, I started the charity Western Isles Beach Clean Up. I obtained sponsorship from local businesses and the local council and persuaded voluntary groups to undertake beach clean-ups. The majority of the sponsorship goes to Water Aid, a UK charity providing clean water, sanitation and hygiene education to the poor communities in developing countries. Our fundraising ideas have expanded over the years with the help of a committee of women local to the Uig area on Lewis where we live.
As a trustee, I bring my knowledge of charity work, book-keeping and secretarial skills, a practical knowledge of developing countries and, last but not least, a woman’s perspective.
My working life has focussed on rural development and included European policy research work, delivery of rural development grant programmes, feasibility and impact assessment studies, as well as rural training organisation. I live in Ness, Isle of Lewis, where I have a croft with cattle and sheep. I have always been involved in local community organisations and projects and particularly enjoy being a part of communities taking control and managing their own development. In recent years I have become increasingly interested in the use of sustainable energy as a means to assist development.
I hope to be able to bring to the Foundation skills in and experience of programme and project management, accountability in managing allocation of funds and grants, and governance – and my enthusiasm to support the valuable and important work in any way I can.
I was born in Glasgow and lived and worked in many different parts of the UK, finally settling in a village near Inverness, where I live with my husband and youngest daughter. Originally a journalist, I moved into PR in the early 1980s and worked in the public and third sectors. I met John Norgrove when we both worked for the North of Scotland Water Authority.
For 15 years I ran my own PR consultancy – Platform PR – named after the railway station that was our office. I sold my business to another PR consultancy in 2015 although I’ve continued to work for them part-time. I’m a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations and a Chartered PR Practitioner. I am on the Board of the Scottish Council for Development and Industry and was previously on the Board of Eden Court Theatre, so I have some relevant experience for my role as a Trustee.
Hugely impressed by the way John and Lorna have turned such a tragic experience into a force for good, I was deeply touched to be asked to become a trustee. It is a privilege to use my PR skills to help this worthwhile cause.
I was brought up in Uig on the Isle of Lewis, and was close friends with Linda – we were in the same year at secondary school.
After studying archaeology at university, I moved to Ireland, working my way around the country, eventually becoming assistant project archaeologist for the National Roads Authority.
Following the collapse of the economy, and jobs ending, I returned to Uig in 2010 with my husband, two young children and my cat. I now live in Stornoway and work with seaweed.
My passion is open water swimming. I also love travelling and have been to Australia, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Morocco, India and Nepal as well as travelling in Europe.
I am honoured and humbled to have been asked to be a trustee of the Linda Norgrove Foundation. As a mother of two young girls, it will be my pleasure to support the work to help women and children in Afghanistan, a place that had Linda’s heart. I have previously fund-raised for the Foundation, and I’m excited now to be able to engage with families and make even more of a difference.