Joanie Speers


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Joanie set up and ran ABC for 8 years, and will now take on the role of trustee in April 2016. She is passionate about the buildings, community and landscape of rural Wales, especially in the Brecon Beacons area, where she and her husband Roger Mears have rebuilt a watermill and its associated buildings. In 2008 her idea of providing affordable housing while saving vernacular buildings grew into the building preservation trust, Adfer Ban a Chwm.

Since 1996, following a 20-year career in fine art publishing, Joanie has been working in the charity sector: for Children’s Express as development director, and for Theodora Children’s Trust, Rise Phoenix and Yes to Life as executive director. In 2008 she gained a masters degree in the voluntary sector from Cass Business School, London. She is on the board of two charities: Apollo Music Projects and Yes to Life, and volunteers for Carers UK and Age UK.

Joanie was appointed trustee in June 2016, and chair in August 2016.

Anjuli Quartermaine


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Anjuli studied Town and Country Planning at Oxford Brookes University where she focussed on affordable housing and building conservation. She works as a Local Authority Planning Policy Officer and has been a Chartered Member of the Royal Town Planning Institute since 2009. She lives with her husband on a dairy farm in the heart of the Towy Valley.

Anjuli grew up in the Llandovery area and fully appreciates the difficulties young people face when trying to access affordable housing in their home communities. Having witnessed the loss of a number of local vernacular buildings either through demolition or renovation beyond recognition resulting in the degradation of the distinct character of our rural towns, villages and countryside, Anjuli would like to address these two important issues by helping to realise local opportunities to rescue vernacular buildings and at the same time provide homes for local people. She was appointed trustee in September 2011.

Anjuli was appointed chair in 2013, and vice chair in August 2016.


Roger Mears

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Roger is an architect and has run his own practice since 1980, as Roger Mears Architects, specialising in historic domestic architecture. He is registered as an Architect Accredited in Building Conservation (AABC). He was a Guardian of the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings (SPAB) between 1996 and 2015 and was on the casework panel of the Georgian Group for 12 years. He is a trustee of Youth Experience in Sport, which provides opportunity through sport for young people.

Since 1979 he and his wife Joanie Speers have brought back to life a derelict house and watermill in Carmarthenshire and been welcomed into the community. Keen that other derelict buildings in the area should be revitalised and wishing to address the problem of a serious shortage of affordable housing for local families they formed Adfer Ban a Chwm.

Roger was first chair of the board, from 2008 to 2013.

Louise Schlee

Louise has lived in Llanddeusant, Carmarthenshire, since 1999. Before coming to Wales she worked for English Heritage and local government archaeology services in Essex and Cambridgeshire. She was the deputy director of the Dyfed Archaeological Trust and their principal heritage management archaeologist for many years and as of February 2015 is Heritage Officer for the National Botanic Gardens of Wales.

She is currently exploring ways to develop community based partnership projects which aim to increase popular enjoyment of local heritage. She was appointed trustee of ABC in July 2008.

Joyce Morgan-Gervis

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Born and bred within the Brecon Beacons National Park, Joyce is the co-founder and Managing Director of Ty-Mawr Lime based in the Park. Since 1995 the company has gone on to become a market-leader in the manufacture of traditional building materials and an innovator in terms of developing more sustainable alternatives and systems to incorporate their use.

In addition, over the years, Joyce has been actively involved in a number of initiatives to support and help move forward the traditional and sustainable building agendas in Wales. She is a Company Director and Treasurer of the Welsh Traditional Building Skills Forum and was Treasurer of its forerunner – the Wales Traditional and Sustainable Skills Advisory Group. She is also on the Steering Group of the Brecon Beacons’ National Park Sustainable Development Fund, the Twyi Centre, the BEST project and the GLASU steering committee in Powys. She was a founder member of Greener Homes and Building Group and was part of a small group who secured the initial £500,000 to get the group started.

Joyce was appointed trustee in June 2016.

Diana Miller

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Originally from Ceredigion, Diana is bi-lingual and due to qualify as a Solicitor in August 2018. Inspired by an article by Shelter on housing issues she chose to specialise in housing policy and issues with social housing in the third year of her undergraduate degree. Her dissertation was a qualitative and quantitative piece of research on affordable housing in Wales; a comparative between rural Ceredigion and urban Cardiff focusing on the difficulties for young people and dissecting what is affordable housing. Following her degree, she moved to Cardiff and worked for Taff Housing Association as a project officer for 16 to 25 year-olds, whilst volunteering for Shelter Cymru at social events such as Eisteddfods, spreading the word about housing issues and trying to break down pre conceptions held by many.

Most recently Diana’ legal dissertation was on the legal difficulties faced with housing policies and planning structure. She also has a proven track record when it comes to fundraising. She enjoyed raising various amounts of money for Shelter Cymru and other charities, for example £34,000 by cycling as part of a team from Cardiff to Paris. She has successfully presented to CEOs and MDs of multi-national companies to raise funds for various sporting projects, the largest being over a hundred thousand pounds and getting an ocean rowing boat in the Rugby League World Cup Opening ceremony

Diana was appointed trustee in June 2016, stood down to focus on her studies, and was re-appointed in March 2018.

During 2017 ABC ran a series of community events and workshops as part of our Grass Roots Heritage Project.  These events were focused around Myddfai and Llanddeusant in the north-western corner of the Brecon Beacons National Park. The many abandoned traditional buildings which came to light during our Historic Landscape Mapping Programme, helped to inform the focus of the workshops and events throughout the year.

The last year has been an amazing opportunity to celebrate and share this very local heritage. It’s been really good to take time to appreciate some of the fascinating hidden histories which are right on our doorsteps, but which are often overshadowed by ‘big heritage’ like castles and stately homes. Our community events meant we met lots of new people and were able to provide support and advice about looking after older buildings that survive in this part of rural Wales, and also hopefully inspire those involved in the project about the rich cultural heritage that these small abandoned buildings represent. Adfer Ban a Chwm worked with over twenty volunteers who helped to record some of the buildings identified through our mapping programme, and talked to many local people throughout the project and at our five key events.

See our news section and project pages for more information

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Copyright © Adfer Ban a Chwm (ABC)

Felin Uchaf, Llanddeusant, Llangadog, Carms. SA19 9UH

Charitable company limited by guarantee, registered in England and Wales. Company no 6591116. Charity no 1124385