Board of Directors

Julia Hilton (Chair)

Julia is a director of Green Dreams Landscape Architects and has over twenty-five years experience of creative collaboration with a wide variety of groups, designing dynamic and inspiring community spaces across London and the south east. She is active in Hastings Green Party and was instrumental in Hastings making a commitment to becoming carbon neutral by 2030. She sees her work as a director of Energise South as core to making that commitment a reality. She is also a director of Energise Sussex Coast.


Richard Watson OBE

Richard is the co-founder and director of Energise Sussex Coast. He was awarded the OBE in 2016 for services to the community of Sussex. Previously he worked at the Environmental Change Institute in Oxford. He is a director of the Schools Energy Co-op and Community Energy South.


Kate Meakin

Kate is the Campaign & Fundraising Manager for Energise Sussex Coast. Previously she has

worked on campaigns for Oxfam, Sustrans and Fair Trade. Alongside this, Kate is an active member of Hastings Transition Towns and is one of the founders and organisers of the annual Sustainability On Sea festival


Mike Smyth

Mike is a solicitor who lives in Milford, Surrey. He is the volunteer Chair of Energy4All, Wey Valley Solar Schools Energy Co-operative and The Schools Energy Co-operative. Previously he was a partner of Lawrence Graham, a major London based firm of solicitors, for more than 20 years, specialising in corporate and commercial law. He chaired Friends of the Earth Trust until 2012.


Chris Saunders OBE

Chris has worked in the NGO sector in international development for 30 years. The positions he held include policy and technical adviser; senior programme manager / director in southern Africa, the Middle East and Iraq; and Chief Executive Officer. He was awarded an OBE for his work with Save the Children in 2004. He believes the climate emergency is the most pressing issue of our age and that it will only be solved by a combination of political change and community based action. There is no better example of community based action than the work of Energy4All and the co-operatives it supports. It is a privilege to be involved.


Richard Oaten

Richard is a local architect, based in the Old Town, Hastings. RIBA qualified for 25 years he has worked overseas, in London and the south-east as well as locally and has been involved with a large number of buildings requiring PVs, MVHR systems and low carbon developments. Richard also has an MSc (Dist) in Advanced Environmental and Energy studies from UEL and has a particular interest in sustainable design and finding new uses for redundant buildings.


Annette Heslop MBE

Annette is the Finance Director of Energy4All and has been working in the renewables industry for 20 years. She is a director of High Winds Community Energy Society & Arrochar Community Hydro Society. Annette is responsible for the professional management and administration of all the Energy4All co-ops and as finance director she leads on financial control, modelling, costing,  projections, banking and treasury. Annette acts as the Company Secretary and serves as a trustee of the Baywind Energy Community Fund.