George Middleton - Chairman of the Boleh Trust

Chairman of the Boleh Trust, nephew of Robin Kilroy, past skipper of Boleh and Freeman of the Worshipful Company of Shipwrights. 

Travelled the world with the Royal Navy and Vosper Thornycroft before retiring to the Somerset countryside where my interests are hobby farming, heritage, and following rugby. 

Passionate about getting Boleh back in the water to serve young people.


Henry Middleton

Spent 30 years in the RAF, retiring as a Group Captain in 1993, and then took up a second career as Bursar of Dauntsey's School in Wiltshire for 14 years where his duties included the oversight of the operation of "Jolie Brise" the school's famous 1913 French Pilot Cutter.

He has a passion for sailing and how that can benefit young people, no doubt born from his childhood spent family sailing on "Boleh"; he has fond memories of his uncle Robin's tuition: That's it, off you go! He was also a Trustee of the Trinity Sailing Foundation, and lives in Wiltshire.


Chris Austin

Chartered Civil Engineer who has lived and worked in Australia, Libya and Oman. Has experienced various roles in engineering, project management, training and sales and marketing. Enjoys being outside - growing own veggies, travel, sports (particularly tennis and golf) and the company of friends and family.

The opportunity to share my training experience, and my wish to help young people achieve their goals, inspired me to be part of the Boleh Trust.


Piers Middleton

Director of Clarksons, the London Shipbrokers, with particular responsibility for new build and offshore support vessels for the oil industry; Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Shipwrights.

Keen sailor who finds time between travel on business and a young family to run marathons raising money for the Boleh Trust.

Involved in the original 2007  'rescue' and recovery of Boleh from Mallorca for restoration in Portsmouth and excited at the real progress being made.


Guy Fithen

Runs Vox, a media and coaching business based in London. He was amazed to hear about the recovery and restoration plans for junk-yacht Boleh from George Middleton, as the story of her original build and Commander Robin Kilroy’s epic voyage from Singapore to England sounded very familiar…

It turned out that as a boy growing up in Singapore, Guy bought a dog-eared copy of Robin’s book, ‘Boleh’ on Changi market and it was this book that inspired him to learn to sail.

Forty years on, Guy is delighted to be involved in the re-launch of Boleh; her refit is giving young people vocational shipwright skills and once afloat she will continue to instil in a new generation a love of the sea and sailing.


David Knight

Widely involved in the agricultural industry as a fruit farmer, director of several grain and fruit cooperatives and in rural management consultancy. Sailing experience extends over 50 years with dinghy and yacht racing  as well as restoration of a large oyster smack.

Working with wood and  going  to sea on a small boat are two great experiences I have been lucky to enjoy.  Boleh brings both aspects together for young people to participate through an inspirational story. It is a privilege to be involved with such an exciting project.


Vice Admiral Sir David Steel

Sir David retired from the Royal Navy in March 2015 after serving in uniform for thirty six years.  A Logistics Officer by specialisation but also trained as a barrister, at sea he served in eight ships, from minesweepers to aircraft carriers, while ashore he was able to call upon his qualification as a barrister in both legal and personnel related appointments.  

As Naval Secretary and then as Second Sea Lord Sir David became acquainted with the work of the Boleh Trust through his former commanding officer, George Middleton.  Sir David needed no encouragement to recognise the value of this wonderful project and visited the restoration programme on a number of occasions before becoming a trustee.  He is delighted now to be more actively involved in the final stages of this project.


Caroline Middleton

Caroline is a practising Barrister specialising in family law. Her sailing experience includes time spent on the classic French Pilot Cutter "Jolie Brise", an Atlantic crossing, and numerous family sailing escapades. Her work encompasses dealing with care cases which gives her a good insight into the needs of those facing disadvantage in their lives.


Sophia Mirchandani

Sophia is a museum professional with over 25 years experience in the heritage and cultural sectors where she has worked with a range of organisations from national sector bodies to independent and volunteer run trusts covering community history, historic sites, museums and archives. She has a particular interest in the imaginative reuse and development of heritage buildings and assets to meet new social and cultural needs.

She first became involved in helping Boleh secure HLF funding when she was part of the team developing plans for her restoration and future use. She has continued to follow the restoration project with interest, and is now delighted to be joining the team at this exciting next stage. She is looking forward to exploring how Boleh can be used to continue to engage and inspire young people through her wonderful story and practical sailing and team building skills.