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BDI Directors

Martin Smith

John Pearce

M Oakley


    PRESIDENT - Martin Smith

Martin Smith, appointed President March 2013, has kept bees for 35 years in Lancashire. He is currently a Director of Communications for the British Beekeepers Association (BBKA), having also been a trustee of the BBKA for seven years, during which time he served as both Chairman and President.

 A Chartered Accountant by training, he is Managing Director of a family Woodworking Machinery business and has extensive commercial experience.

TREASURER – Sharon Blake

Sharon was appointed BDI Treasurer in 2000. She has kept bees for 35 years mainly in Somerset where she is a vice president and a past treasurer. She normally has twenty colonies but in recent years EFB has been a problem in Somerset. She was the BBKA Spring Convention Treasurer and is perhaps better known as the editor of BBKA News.

She worked in many roles in her career with Marks and Spencer where her final job was as a Regional Finance Manager. 

CLAIMS MANAGER – Bernard Diaper

Bernard has served on the BDI board initially as an Insurance adviser since 1992 and was President for 8 years before being appointed Claims Manager in 2004. He became interested in beekeeping as a young boy working with his father and grandfather and has subsequently kept bees since 1961. He has served on the National Honey Show Executive for over 20 years and holds the Senior National Honey Judges Certificate. He is currently Life Vice President and Custodian Trustee of Warwickshire BKA having held the positions of Chairman and President.

 He is now retired as a Mechanical Engineer and Insurance Claims Manager by profession.

    COMPANY SECRETARY – Donald Robertson-Adams

    Donald was appointed Secretary in April 2009. He started beekeeping in 2009 and is still learning the ropes. He is 
    currently Secretary of Teifiside BKA in West Wales where he also mows the apiary grass.

He is now retired but worked as a Chartered Accountant in Zambia and Bahrain for many years in the profession and national government before ending his days at an insurance company in Shropshire.

VICE PRESIDENT - Roger Patterson

Roger Patterson was appointed to the BDI board in April 2006 and is BDI vice-President. He had a full term of 8 years as a Trustee of the BBKA. He is a Trustee of the Bee Improvement and Bee Breeders Association (BIBBA) and is Lecture Convenor for the National Honey Show.

Roger started keeping bees in 1963 and is Life President, apiary manager and a demonstrator at his local BKA. He lectures and demonstrates widely on practical beekeeping topics and is usually accompanied by his well known border collie, Nell. He is a prolific writer for beekeeping magazines and author of books and booklets.

Born and brought up on a farm in West Sussex and an engineer by trade, Roger ran his own engineering company for 25 years, but is now retired. He owns and runs Dave Cushman's website, which is considered to be the world's most comprehensive beekeeping website.

DIRECTOR - John Hendrie 

John was appointed to the BDI board in April 1985. He has kept bees for about 50 years. He is Company Secretary of Beecraft and also the Membership Secretary for Kent SKA. He was re-appointed as a BBKA trustee in 2020, having already served previously for nine years. He is also a past President of the BBKA. In addition he is a Moderator on the BBKA Examination Board. He does a lot of lecturing at bee conference and associations in the UK and Ireland. 

He is a retired chemist and worked for the Environment Agency as a Laboratory Manager then Data Manager until retirement. 

 DIRECTOR - Alex Mattelaer

Alex was appointed to the BDI board in March 2013. He is a member of Hastings & Rother (Sussex) BKA, is  the Accounts Examiner for Sussex BKA and has kept bees since 1979.

A business process and technology specialist by trade, Alex has extensive experience in the development of systems in the insurance industry, and has worked for many years abroad. He is also a Trustee and Treasurer of the charity Equitable Water.

DIRECTOR – John Pearce

John was appointed to the BDI board in March 2013. He has been involved with the Insurance needs of Beekeepers for over 15 years

He worked for a number of Insurance Brokers before setting up his own insurance brokerage business in 1999. He is a past President of his Rotary Club and Vice Chairman of his local Parish Council.

DIRECTOR – Mark Oakley

Mark was appointed to the BDI board in March 2016. He has kept bees for a number of years and is responsible for the BBKA, Lancashire and Ormskirk Beekeeping websites.  

He has recently retired from working in the field of IT security including at a major high street bank. Mark provides BDI with computer experience in general and IT security experience in particular.