China Fleet Trust welcomes new Chairperson - China Fleet Country Club
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China Fleet Trust welcomes new Chairperson

02 December 2022

The China Fleet Trust is delighted to announce the appointment of their new Chair of the Trustees, Rear Admiral John Weale CB OBE. John accepted the role from Rear Admiral Mike Wood CBE DL at a short ceremony during a meeting of the Trustees on Friday 2nd December, held at the China Fleet Country Club, Saltash, Cornwall.

The China Fleet Trust is an important military charity who own the China Fleet Country Club in Cornwall and whose charitable objects are to provide quality leisure and recreational facilities to their beneficiaries; all serving members of the Royal Navy, the Royal Marines, the Royal Fleet Auxiliary, the Maritime Reserve and their families. Ex-serving members of the Royal Navy and the Royal Marines are also classed as beneficiaries.

Admiral Mike moves on after a near 10-year tenure as Chair of the Trustees and has done much to increase the Charity and Club’s profile amongst the serving RN community (Mike moves on after completing the maximum tenure of a Trustee).

“It is with great delight that I accept the role as Chairperson of the China Fleet Trust.” said John “I would like to first congratulate and thank my predecessor, Mike Wood, for having the helm for 10 very successful years which included the difficult periods of the Covid pandemic. I very much look forward to working with the Board of Trustees, the Company and the Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity to continue to build the positive reputation and capabilities of the China Fleet Country Club for the benefit of the Royal Navy, Royal Marines, veterans and their families.”

“Although the economic climate is challenging, it is arguably more important now, more than ever, that we continue to build the resilience of the Club and deliver the best service we can to all our Beneficiaries.”

Mike added:

“I hand over the Chairmanship of the China Fleet Trust, and its ownership of the Club, well positioned to continue, and build on, the support it provides to the Royal Navy and Royal Marines; their people and their families are our raison d’etre. During my ten years here, with the sterling efforts of many others, I have overseen significant enhancements to the Club’s leisure facilities and witnessed the real benefits these provide to all who use us.”

Mike’s time at the Trust has seen major investment in the Club’s apartments, gym, Aqua Spa and many other facilities and infrastructure which helped propel the Club to a 4-star Country Club. Recent investments in state-of-the-art solar technology will assist in the challenge of countering increasing energy costs while assisting in the enterprises Carbon Neutrality targets.

“We are well prepared to deal with the challenges of the current economic crisis, as we were with the Covid pandemic, so I leave confident that the business resilience we have built will prevail and our reputation as a leisure destination of choice with its unique blend of facilities will grow. It is truly an amazing place and I shall very much miss my involvement with it and everyone I have had the privilege to work alongside.”

Rear Admiral John Weale CB OBE is resident in Southeast Cornwall, lives in Kingsand, Rame Peninsula, with his wife Julie; they have 4 grown up children and 5 grandchildren. John left the Royal Navy in May 2020, his last post being Flag Officer Scotland and Northern Ireland and Rear Admiral Submarines based in Faslane while retaining his home in Cornwall. He is Chairperson of Atlas Elektronik, is an underwater specialist advisor to James Fisher Defence and President of Defence Deer Management.

Rear Admiral Mike Wood CBE DL spent 35 years in the Royal Navy, his final appointment being the Chief Naval Engineer Officer and Director General Logistic Operations. He then had a portfolio of jobs for 8 years principally in the Defence Industry sector. He was a magistrate for 9 years and became the Deputy Chairman of the South Devon Bench. He is a Deputy Lieutenant of Cornwall and has a number of other charitable organisation interests. He is a keen sailor and lives on the Rame Peninsula in Millbrook with his wife Judy; they have three grown up children.

I wish my relief John Weale, my fellow Trustees and all those who work at the Club every good fortune for the future.”