Apsley Paper Trail (APT) is a conservation and education charity with particular relevance to the paper industry and several local communities in Hertfordshire.  Its prime objectives are to conserve the heritage of the paper industry, especially in Hertfordshire’s Gade Valley, and use its facilities for educational purposes.

In fulfilling its conservation objective, the charity has acquired and utilises two historic mill sites, Frogmore Paper Mill, an active paper mill and visitor centre as well as two buildings on the old John Dickinson Apsley Mill site, namely the John Dickinson Enterprise Centre and Cottage that accommodates both young and established businesses. Also maintained on the Apsley site is the John Dickinson First and Second World War Memorial.

In achieving its education objective, the charity provides facilities, resources and programmes to enable six distinct communities to learn about an important part of their heritage and history. It also serves the general public who visit Frogmore Paper Mill as individuals or as an interest group. The six distinct communities are:

  1. Today’s Gade Valley residents, workers, learners and visitors
  2. Schools, especially in and around the Gade Valley
  3. The British paper industry and allied trades
  4. Paper based art and craft practitioners
  5. Descendants of former Gade Valley paper mill workers
  6. Social and industrial historians

APT is also committed to reaching new audiences through outreach and an inspiring and varied event programme that encourages a wider range of people to engage with our important heritage.

John has volunteered at The Paper Trail since 2017. He has been involved since the inception of Apsley Paper Trail Charitable Trust becoming a director of the Charity between 2000 and 2010. Also during that period, he took on the role of General Manager of Frogmore Paper Mill. He was until that time managing director of a small group of companies allied to the printing and paper industry.

Henry has represented Apsley Paper Trail as the Trust’s property advisor since 2006 becoming a Trustee in 2016.He has held senior roles at The Crown Estate Commissioners and British Rail before setting up his own London based property consultancy advising corporate clients including charities and trusts on property development and portfolio management. Additionally Henry is Chairman of Mercy Ships UK, a member of the board of Mercy Ships International and a judge for the National Railway Heritage Awards.

Simon is a director of TVAC, a consultancy specialising in advising organisations on the strategic development and commercial planning of visitor attractions and destinations. Prior to founding TVAC, he was managing director of Grant Leisure, which owned and operated 3 commercially successful visitor attractions in the UK.

Hilary became a Trustee in 2018. She is a Chartered Accountant having qualified with Price Waterhouse in Audit and later specialised in International Corporate Tax. She has spent the last 23 years as Regional Tax Director of two separate multi-national corporations and has recently retired.

Steve has been using Frogmore as a venue for papermaking courses since 2014.

He originally qualified as a chemist and was responsible for global technical services for a leading zirconium chemicals company, and still does consultancy in that field. He obtained his PhD in Papermaking from UMIST in 1982 before becoming Technical/Quality manager for a cigarette paper manufacturer. After running a zirconium chemicals company in China for three years he returned to the UK in 2003 and set up his training company, PaperClassroom. He still enjoys teaching Level 2 and Level 3 papermaking, and in 2018 was awarded the contract to train all the UK’s papermaking apprentices.

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