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Helping Hands

Who's behind Save KW4? is the digital face of the interest group who've been on the case since the doors closed and were bolted for the last time on Boxing Day 2015.

The informal and open group currently comprises around a dozen local residents who all share a strong interest in saving the pub.

A diverse mixture with a common goal, we're able to draw on a wealth of expertise and experience spanning a variety of professions and perspectives.

If you'd like to know more or make contact then please leave your details and we'll be in touch...

The Interest Group

Why does Speen need a pub? 

Every community needs a place for people to gather, to meet new and old friends, and share stories of everyday life.  We need our pub back!

Andy Thompson*

Over a 30 year business career, Andy has sector experience in offshore oil exploration, technology, leisure, retail and retail property, both corporately and in owned businesses, and is currently Chairman of a national health & fitness franchise.  A resident of Speen for 21 years, and a Trustee of Speen Playing Fields for much of that time, including Chairman for 4 years, he plays an active role in organising community events such as Bonfire Night and Funday

Pete Symonds

Qualified Chartered Surveyor and Commercial Property consultant with over 30 years experience in the local property market.
He has been a village resident throughout this period and has worked to protect and enhance the heritage of the village and support the Playing Field Association, designing and constructing the bike park and also village bonfires for the past six years.

Jem Symondson

Jem was head of the residential development department for Hamptons International responsible for 13 offices in the Thames Valley and Chilterns region, advising on design, acquisition and disposal of residential development sites, and thereafter Land Director for a medium sized property development company, for the past 14 years he has devoted his time to residential design projects.

On two occasions he Chaired the Speen Festival and for a number of years he was

Chairman of the Speen Funday committee, and continues to play his part on the marquee committee.

Matthew Davies

A resident of Speen for more than 13 years, Matthew has become increasingly involved in many aspects of the community. Running the Funday, a regular core member of the bonfire team and an active trustee of the Speen Playing Fields Association he also regularly lends a hand with numerous school, pre-school and other village activities & events.

Matt has more than 20 years diverse experience in management & project delivery within investment banks and the finance industry.

Resurrecting the village pub will add back a marvellous facet to everyday Speen life and its numerous community events. It will also return one of the key amenities that made Speen such an attractive place to bring the family in the first place.

Ashley and his family have been Speen residents on and off since 1992 and both of his daughters attended Speen School where his wife, Julie, has been a Governor for 13 years.  He has over 33 years commercial experience and specialises in creating University spin out companies to exploit medical innovations of all kinds. To date has been the founder of 14 new biomedical businesses for which he has raised more than £100M in multiple rounds of venture capital and grant funding.


Ashley, who once part owned and ran a large country pub in Oxfordshire, believes that our village pub can and should be at the heart of our wonderful Speen community as it will help to ensure its continued vibrancy and long term sustainability. 

Ashley Cooper

Steve Binder

Steve has enjoyed a long and successful career working for technology companies who were the founders of today’s mobile computing and wireless networking sector (think delivery driver with handheld computer and software).

Having set up the UK subsidiary for American firm LXE (now part of Honeywell) he went on to become European Sales Director with responsibility for some 80 staff across eight countries.  He also held the position of UK Channels Director with Symbol Technologies (now part of Motorola Solutions) who still hold the patents to the hand-held barcode scanner. Later, after a few years of running his own independent sales and business development consultancy, he has finally ‘settled down’ to a role running a small industrial park owned by the Binder family.

As a local boy, and resident in Speen for over 25 years, Steve feels lucky and privileged to be part of such a fantastic village community with so many friendships forged in the King William when it was a thriving pub.

He believes the pub is eminently viable and looks forward to the day when it reopens its doors and again becomes the hub of village life.

Tony Bobroff

Tony worked in industry for almost 40 years, firstly with Ford Motor Company and then with Marks and Spencer for 10 years, when he joined one of their major manufacturers. He became Chief Executive of the largest division of Courtaulds in 1998, responsible for over 2000 people. He has a lifetime of experience managing people as well as negotiating with retail buyers, directors, suppliers and trade unions. He also, in his last six years, worked for smaller companies within the textile sector as well as running his own business consultancy.

On retiring in 2012 Tony retrained and qualified as an FMC Accredited Family Mediator. He has managed over 450 hours of Mediation and 400 Assessments. He has brought his substantial commercial and negotiating experience to bear in Children and Property and Finance Mediations.

Tony has lived in Speen since 2006 and has been involved in village affairs ever since; he was Chairman of the Playing Fields for 5 years and has happily supported the Festival over 8 years with his dubious dressing up and singing. For him the pub is essential for for Community, both for those long established and particularly for our more recent neighbours.

Keith Fisher

Keith has lived in Speen for over 20 years and has enjoyed contributing to the village through the organisation of FunDay, being the Treasurer of the Playing Fields Committee and running the annual mens' ski trip. He feels passionately about the preservation of the King William as a social hub for the village community.

Alongside his village endeavours Keith is a Financial Planner and founding director of Chiltern House Ltd, a local business that looks after over £300m of client funds. As an "Approved Person" registered under the Financial Conduct Authority, he brings over 25 years of experience to the group and is well versed in communicating financial matters in a simple and concise manner.

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