Council Members

Marcus Whewell, Chairman

Marcus Whewell


My family has lived in the village continuously since 1995. I joined the Council in 2017 to help contribute to maintaining and improving the quality of life for all its residents and I consider it an honour and a privilege to represent the parish and serve the local community.

My background includes roles in strategic planning, finance, business development, compliance, operations, and marketing / communications. I have been a director of an international ‘not for profit’ organization, several consumer products businesses, and also one of the UK’s leading media groups. I am currently launching a new business focused on helping smaller companies improve their sustainability, and I also serve on the board of the UK’s largest charity in the property sector.

I feel very fortunate to live in such a wonderful location, and hope that the Parish Council can continue to help protect, connect and energize the parish – and that we can all work together to enhance our sense of community and shared spaces.

Tel: 464293
Email Councillor

Zoe Ryall

Vice Chairman

I spent my formative years living in Hemingford Grey and then moved to Hemingford Abbots when I was ten. Following a twenty year period, during which I lived in Cambridge and then Warwickshire, I moved back to Hemingford Abbots in 2017 with my young family.

A qualified librarian, I have spent the majority of my career in IT as a Business Analyst, working on large and complex IT transformation projects to identify requirements and business process improvements. My current work is as a preschool assistant in Cambridge.

I enjoy being part of and helping out in the community; I joined the Hemingford Grey Playgroup Committee and St James’s First Steps team in 2018 and the Parish Council in 2019.

Tel: 462387
Email Councillor

Bridget Flanagan

Our family came to Hemingford Abbots in 1984 and our three children attended the village Playgroup and Primary School. We enjoy village life with its numerous activities and many friendships. It is a beautiful village set in wonderful countryside.

I feel strongly that everyone has a responsibility to contribute towards their community and environment, and so have always been someone who offers to help. I worked as a Primary School Teacher until my children were born, and then did part-time administrative work from home. In 1998 I was elected a Parish Councillor and served as Chairman from 2000-2006 and also 2018-2021.

I am very interested in Local and Landscape History, and my research has led to seven books and many papers published, as well as frequent talks to clubs and societies. I am currently Chair and a Trustee of The Friends of the Norris Museum, St Ives and The Friends of St Margaret’s Church, Hemingford Abbots. I lead the Flower Guild at Hemingford Abbots, am a founder member and Trustee of the Great Ouse Valley Trust, a member of the Norris Trust Group, and am involved with the running of the Village Lunch and Hemingfords Regatta.

Tel: 465370
Email Councillor

John Peters

Parish Councillor since 2006 serving for 8 years as Chairman from 2009 to 2017.

Skills and experience brought to the Parish Council is as a graduate of Imperial College, London, a Chartered Civil Engineer, Chartered Environmentalist and formerly Chartered Highway Engineer and Chartered Manager with 30+ years career experience managing £multi-million construction projects. Latterly as Technical, Environment and Sustainability Director of the Construction Confederation, the Trade Body for the industry, liaising with Government and its non-departmental public bodies and providing advice to its member companies. Currently a self-employed Consultant and Contributing Editor of the biannually updated Construction Environmental Manual the leading sector publication on environmental legislation, policy and best practice.

Lived in Hemingford Abbots for 17 years moving to the village in June 2004 having originally relocated to Huntingdonshire in 1977 to manage the construction of the 27 bridges on the A45 Cambridge Northern By-Pass (A14).

Tel: 496464
Email Councillor

Peter Keen

My wife Melanie and I have lived in the Hemingfords since 1983 and in Abbots since 2013.  A Chartered Accountant by training I spent over 35 years in developing and raising funds for emerging technology-based businesses, primarily in healthcare, and have recently completed an 8-year term as a Trustee of a large medical charity.  Covid-19 has made me realise how fortunate we are to live in an idyllic village environment surrounded by beautiful countryside and with excellent, but unobtrusive, communication links on our doorstep.  I joined the Parish Council in May 2021 and hope to play a part in ensuring that the next generation can be as fortunate.

Tel: 300931
Email Councillor

Bob Penney

My wife and I have lived in the village since June 2012. Prior to this we lived in St Ives for 19 years and before then we spent 4 years living and working in Sweden.

I’ve worked in the Life Tech/ Med Tech industries for more than 40 years and I’m currently a management consultant in my own company. Over the past 20 years I’ve punctuated my consulting business with setting up and running 4 companies in the UK, Finland & Japan. These naturally involved strategic & operational business planning, financial management plus sales, marketing and logistics.

My current work focus is helping SME’s to improve their operations and management teams. As a part of this I am a speaker, mentor and assessor on the NHS Clinical Entrepreneur program.

Previously, I was Chairman of Hemingford Abbots Village Hall for 2.5 years but had to give this up due to work commitments. It was a role I undertook in order to contribute to a village and community that we love living in because we share similar values to many others here. My hope is that I can continue to contribute again by joining the Parish Council.

Email Councillor