Board Of Trustees

The Board of Trustees are responsible for the governance of the Magistrates’ Association. They set the strategic plan and budget and are legally accountable for the MA’s activities. The members of the Board of Trustees are sourced from and elected by the membership.

John Bache, Cheshire - Chair
Beverley Higgs, Somerset - Deputy Chair
Alison Spurgeon-Dickson, Cumbria North - Deputy Chair
Paul Kemp, Dorset - Treasurer 
Mark Beattie, Central & North London
Sarah Clarke, Buckinghamshire 
Emir Feisal, Central and North London
Louise Fleet, West Glamorgan
Jacqui MacDonald-Davis, Central and North London
Luke Rigg, Central and North London
John Stroud-Turp, Middlesex 

John Bache - MA & Board of Trustees Deputy Chairman

John Bache JP FRCS, Cheshire - Chair

John was Bench Representative to the Executive Committee of the Cheshire Branch of the MA from October 2006 and National Council Representative from November 2007 before being appointed Deputy Chair. He was a member of the Youth Courts Committee from 2007-10 and chaired the committee from 2010-13. He was a Trustee from November 2009 until October 2013. He was Chair of the Cheshire Branch in 2012. He served as Deputy Chair from October 2013 until 18 November 2017, when he was elected MA Chair at the national AGM.

John has been a magistrate since 1989. He has been a member of the Youth Panel since 1992 and was Chair of the Youth Panel from 1998 to 2000. He was Deputy Bench Chair from 2006 to 2008 and Bench Chair from 2009 to 2011. He was Chair of Cheshire JIG in 2010 and 2011 and Chair of the North West Region of the National Bench Chairmen’s Forum in 2011. He has given evidence at the House of Commons Justice Committee and various other parliamentary inquiries. He was a member of Lord Laming's Independent Review of Looked-After Children in the Criminal Justice System and of the Judicial Youth Justice Committee, chaired by Mr Justice William Davis.

John is a doctor and was a consultant in Accident and Emergency for 26 years, until he took early retirement when he was elected Chair of the Bench. His interests include violence in the NHS and the harmful effects of alcohol. He enjoys history and current affairs and relaxes by walking his two dogs.

John is married with four children.


Bev Higgs - MA Trustee

Beverley Higgs JP, Somerset - Deputy Chair

Beverley was appointed to the South Somerset & Mendip Bench in 2005. Since 2008 she has sat as an Adult Court Chair. She is currently a co-opted member of the Somerset MA Branch, a member of the Training and Development Committee and has mentored new magistrates. Since 2014 Beverley has been a member of the MA Training Committee with a particular interest in appraisal and continuing professional development. She served on the Board of Trustees from January 2015 until the MA AGM on 18 November 2017 when she was elected Deputy Chair.

With a professional background in HR Beverley is an experienced not-for-profit charity manager. She managed a CAB Bureau for seven years and also sat on the National Trustee Board of CITA the membership association. She has recently played a key role in establishing a Restorative Justice Partnership to serve Somerset. Beverley is in the process of doctoral research with Portsmouth University, her interests are the roles of volunteers in the criminal justice system and the use of restorative justice by criminal justice agencies.

Beverley has three adult children, a granddaughter and absolutely no interest in sport whatever – well – maybe Formula 1 if pushed!


Alison Spurgeon-Dickson - Cumbria South

Dr Alison Spurgeon-Dickson JP, Cumbria North - Deputy Chair

Alison was appointed as a magistrate in 2005. She joined Magistrates in the Community (MIC) in 2008. In 2010 she qualified as a Bench Chair. Between 2010-2014 she was a member of the Cumbria combined family panel. From 2013-2015 she undertook the role of Deputy Chair of Furness and District bench. Since 2015 she has served as Deputy Chair of the South Cumbria bench. She served on the Board of Trustees from January 2016 until the MA AGM on 18 November 2017 when she was elected Deputy Chair.

Alison has been a member of the MA since her appointment in 2005. In 2012 she presented research to the MA. She was appointed to the MA Training Committee in 2013.

Through her work as a senior lecturer at the University of Cumbria, as a chartered psychologist, as a prison researcher, employment in HM prison service and voluntary work in prisons and young offender institutes Alison has gained a good level of understanding of what sentences are designed to achieve, and their relative effectiveness in preventing re-offending. Her current lecturing in forensic psychology focuses upon community and custodial sentences, risk assessment and risk management, and the efficacy of offending behaviour programmes, which gives her a clear, critical, and detailed understanding of offender populations, such as mentally disordered offenders, female offenders and violent offenders. Her role as a magistrate together with her professional role give her insight and understanding of policy and practice related to the working of courts and decision-making processes. 

Alison hopes to contribute her knowledge and experience to significant matters of the Board, such as expansion of the MA’s operations into new activities, particularly in light of the current review of the role of the magistracy.

She is married with two adult children – enjoys music, architecture, and living in the Lake District.


Paul Kemp, MA Honorary Treasurer

Paul Kemp JP, Dorset - Treasurer

Paul Kemp became a magistrate on the Dorset bench in February 2018, having retired in 2014 after 34 years in industry, initially as a development chemist before concentrating on finance, IT and business change leadership. Paul has worked for a number of large multinational companies, including British Airways and Cobham plc, the multinational aerospace and defence company. 

Paul is a non-executive director and Audit Committee Chair for Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust.

Paul lives in St Leonards, near Ringwood.



Mark Beattie - Trustee

Mark Beattie JP FBCS, Central and North London 

Mark was appointed to the Camden and Islington Bench, based at Highbury Corner, in 2006. Shortly after the creation of the North London Bench, Mark became Chair of the Training and Development Committee for four years and went on to Chair the London Magistrates' Area Training Committee for two years. He was elected as Bench Chair for North London in 2015 and completed his term in April 2018. He sits as a Court Chair in both Adult and Youth jurisdictions.

Mark has previously served as Chair of the Central and North London Branch of the MA, an MA regional representative for London and is the past chair of the MA Training Committee. He joined the Board of Trustees in May 2017, to fill a casual vacancy, before being elected to the position in November 2017. He has taken the lead on the new appraisal scheme for magistrates on behalf of the MA.

Mark's day job is as Head of Central Services for LondonEnergyt Ltd, a renewable energy and recycling company based in North London.

Mark has been a Trustee of the Student's Union at the University of Southampton. He serves on the Registration and Standard Committee of the British Computer Society (BCS). In 2016 the BCS awarded Mark with its 'Meritorious Service Award', in recognition of his service 'across several areas of the Institute's activities'.


Sarah Clarke - MA Trustee

Sarah Clarke BA (Hons) LLB JP, Buckinghamshire

Sarah joined the magistracy in 2004 and was appointed to the Milton Keynes' Bench, which subsequently became part of the amalgamated Buckinghamshire Bench. During her time as a magistrate she has been a Bench Chairman, Deputy Bench Chairman, Deputy Chairman of the youth panel, an adult court Presiding Justice, a youth Presiding Justice, a mentor and an appraiser. She was a member of the specialist domestic violence panel and the magistrate representative involved in the formation of the Thames Valley Out of Court Disposal Scrutiny Panel. Sarah was the Chairman of the Buckinghamshire Branch of the Magistrates' Association from 2012-6, a member of the MA's Judicial and Court Management Committee and is currently a Deputy Chair of the Adult Courts Committee.

Sarah was the county coordinator for the national Schools' Mock Trial Competition and has been involved working with schools across Buckinghamshire to promote the competition since 2010.

When not involved in all things magisterial, Sarah trained as a counsellor and worked in an adolescent psychiatric unit before working for many years as a freelance researcher specialising in customer experience and qualitative research in both the commercial and public sector. She is a Director at Develin Consulting Ltd, a management consultancy specialising in data analytics and change management within the commercial and charitable sectors and, Business Improvement Specialists working with data to improve business growth and efficiency.

Sarah is married and has one son who is currently in his final year at university.


Emir Feisal - Central and North London MA

Emir Feisal JP, Central and North London

Emir was appointed to the Central London bench in 2005, and is an approved Court Chair. He sat on the BTDC from 2014-2017.

He is Managing Director of 360 Change Consulting Ltd specialising in transformational change. He is a Chartered Accountant by profession.

The majority of his career was spent at the Sunday Times as Associate Managing Editor.

He is presently a Commissioner for the Judicial Appointments Commission. He has sat on a number of Boards including ones for The Queens award for Voluntary Services, The Royal Parks Agency, South West London and St. George's Mental Health Trust, The Henry Smith Charity and the Strategic Advisory Board of the Bar Tribunals and Adjudication Services.


Louise Fleet JP, West Glamorgan

Louise was appointed a Magistrate in 1993. She sits on the West Glamorgan Bench where her appointments include Deputy Bench Chairman, Chairman of the Family Panel, a mentor and an appraiser.   She has served on many magistrates’ committees, including the Advisory Committee.   A member of the West Glamorgan MA Committee for ten years, serving as secretary and chairman, she then re-joined the committee in 2018 after a gap of four years and is the Deputy Chairman and Family Panel Representative.   She was appointed to the MA’s Family Court Committee in 2017 and is the Magistrate member on the Family Justice Council.

Louise worked for Swansea University in management and administration, in the central policy unit and democratic services in the City & County of Swansea and as an auditor and manager in the Wales Audit Office where she was also an elected employee member of the WAO Board.  She retired in 2018.

Louise’s many interests include golf. She represented Wales at international level, and is a member of Pennard Golf Club in Swansea, the Royal Liverpool Golf Club and the Royal & Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews. She was the first Chair and then the first female President of the Golf Union of Wales (now Golf Wales) and a director of Ryder Cup Wales (2010) Ltd. 

Louise’s other community links include: trustee of Neath Port Talbot Council for Voluntary Services, Thrive Women’s Aid and Tenovus Cancer Care; chair of the management committee of the Neath Port Talbot Child Contact Centre; and independent member of the Neath Port Talbot Council Standards Committee.  She was High Sheriff of West Glamorgan in 2017 and was appointed HM Lord-Lieutenant of West Glamorgan in March 2020.




Jacqui MacDonald-Davis JP, Central and North London

Jacqui was appointed in 2005. As well as sitting on the MA Board, she is Deputy Bench Chair of the Central London Magistrates' Court and Deputy Chair on the MA Training Committee. She also served for eight years on the Central London Advisory Committee and for two years on the Bench Training and Development Committee.

Jacqui is a qualified teacher and a trained Careers Education and Guidance specialist and has worked in higher education as a lecturer, a consultant and as Head of Staff and Organisational Development. She now works for Health Education England in the Professional Support Unit as an Education Lead, supporting trainee medical clinicians. She is passionate about supporting individuals to engage with their potential and to take the next step in their personal and professional development. She also works on a voluntary basiss for the Prince's Trust and is a trained mentor, coach, mediator, Myers Briggs assessor and the author of several articles and publications.

When not working, Jacqui enjoys the theatre, travel and discovering new restaurants.


Luke Rigg JP, Central and North London

Luke was appointed as a magistrate in December 2014, at the age of 20, to the Calderdale Bench in West Yorkshire. After sitting for six months, Luke relocated to London and transferred to the North London Bench. He is as an Adult and Youth Winger and a member of the Probation Liaison Committee.

Luke has spoken out about the need to improve the age diversity of magistrates. He has spoken to a number of media outlets to raise the profile of the magistracy and in 2016 he gave oral evidence to the Justice Select Committee's role of the magistracy inquiry. 

Luke works as a civil servant leading on local government finance. Prior to this, he worked in policy and strategy roles in a number of councils in London. He has recently become a co-opted community governor at a local primary school, where he sits on the Resources Committee. 


John Stroud-Turp - Middlesex MA

John Stroud-Turp JP, Middlesex

John is a relatively new magistrate, he is a member of the West London Bench and the London Family Panel. He is a retired artillery officer; he worked extensively in arms control, counter proliferation, defence capability and defence acquisition. Until retiring he was part of the UK's delegation to a number of UN disarmament groups. He runs a small defence and project management consultancy and is a panel member for the Institute of Apprenticeships.

John holds a BA in Psychology from the University of London, a BSc from the Open University which included criminology, an MBA from Cranfield University and an MSc in Human Resource Management also from Cranfield University.

John is married with two sons.