Richard Midgley, Chairman
Richard combines his work as chairman of the MDGA ExCom with his role as a director and managing partner for clearing and forwarding importer and exporter, CH Logistics. Previously, he spent most of his career with multinational Nestlé in a variety of positions across South Africa and Nigeria. His particular areas of professional expertise include general management, marketing, labour relations, and logistics. His work on behalf of Marina residents brings him into contact with SAPS and local security providers; the City of Cape Town, its Planning Department and our local councillor, Aimee Kuhl; Kyran Wright at Cape Nature, MDGA’s auditors and landlord; Siyakhula and our associated community outreach partners; and – most importantly – our members and residents.
“As chairman,” says Richard, “I am responsible for keeping an overview and directing our ExCom members, who are all talented volunteers with a strong commitment to the widest interests of the
Marina and its residents.”
Richard and his wife, Pascale, moved to the Marina five years ago. He has two daughters, Alexandra and Samantha, a son, Nicholas, and two grandchildren, Max and Anoushka.
Lise Carswell, Vice-Chair, Environment
Lise’s professional background is in tourism, planning five-star trips primarily for American clients. She spent most of her youth in Denmark and Sweden before returning to Cape Town in her early 20s. Her links with the Marina began 12 years ago, when she took a detour to visit a show home with husband, David, and promptly bought it.
“With our son, Mark, and three pups, we couldn’t be happier here. I intend to die looking at this view.”
ExCom created the Environment portfolio specifically to take advantage of Lise’s experience. Her work as an ExCom member also involves administering the Ubuntu community support card and
providing assistance wherever it is needed.
“I spend a lot of time following up sewerage alerts from residents with Kyran Wright at Cape Nature and Trevor Grootijies at the City’s Reticulation Department.”
Beyond travel, Lise’s interests include gardening, walking her dogs in the Marina’s green spaces, and reading.
Peter Allen, Security
Peter has spent more than 36 years in the military, policing, and security sectors. After six years in the South African Navy, he joined SAPS at Muizenberg and worked in a variety of locations and roles, including 10 years as a member of the SAPS Dog Unit Tactical Support Group. After 21 years in the police, he resigned in 2010 as a commissioned Captain before spending a year as a private military contractor at the US Embassy in Kabul, working for the US State Department. In 2011, Peter became estate security manager and later estate manager at Burgundy Estate near Plattekloof, a housing estate with a Mashie golf course and 3,500 residences.
Peter’s hobbies include motorcycle and quadbike riding, and target shooting as a member of the National Hunting and Shooting Association (NHSA) and the South African Defensive Pistol Association (SADPA). He also finds time to moonlight as a close protection officer for Hollywood A-list celebrities.
Peter – who holds a degree in policing – has been a Marina resident since 2012 after moving from Lakeside with his wife, Janine, and sons, Conor and Jared.
Digby Colman, Standards
Digby studied building at Cape Town Technikon then worked in the construction sector with Clifford Harris and Grinaker Construction before his interest in politics motivated him to join the Industrial Relations Department of Harmony Gold Mine in Virginia at the time when the Wiehahn Commission first legalised black labour organisations.
“I was very fortunate to have sat in on one of the first recognition agreements signed with the new NUM and met Cyril Ramaphosa, who started the union as a young man,” recalls Digby.
After 12 years as HR Manager on various mines during interesting times, Digby moved to Cape Town, where he started and ran a PostNet in Pinelands for several years, before happily selling up. He then spent a number of years delivering sail and powerboats overseas before realising he was more of a homeboy than a traveller. Happily settled in the Marina since December 2019, Digby now teaches sailing, boating, navigation, and radio, while his wife, Mandy, teaches fine art at Wynberg Boys’ High. Married since 1981, they have two adult children, Sarah and Graeme.
Lathif Gafoor, Long-Term Projects
During his professional career, Lathif was involved in sports administration and worked as a road surveyor and school teacher before venturing into the commercial world, where he successfully ran and sold various businesses as going concerns. In addition to serving with the Child Welfare Society, Lathif also played a political role in the anti-apartheid struggle in areas such as education and raising and distributing finance. Now retired, Lathif works for various organisations in voluntary roles, including national chairperson of the ANC Veterans’ League Trust.
As a member of the MDGA ExCom, his responsibilities include serving as a committee member for Ward 64 and the Zandvlei Protected Areas Advisory Committee (ZPAAC) as well as the Community Police Forum (CPF). He also works alongside Kyran Wright at Cape Nature by, for example, helping to monitor the nets trapping litter flowing downstream into Zandvlei. Over the years, Lathif has built strong personal relationships with a number of City of Cape Town department heads as well as our local councillor, Aimee Kuhl.
Lathif, who moved to the Marina in 1994, is married to Nujma and they have three children – Farzanah, Zeenat and Rizwana.
Angus Hemp, Waterways
Angus and his wife, Frances, have owned a house on Uitsig Peninsula since 1994 and became full-time Marina residents in 2016.
A mining engineer by profession, Angus settled in Cape Town in 1972, and, after completing an MBA, he worked in the quarry industry around Cape Town and the West Coast.
Before retiring, he also had stints on Reef gold mines and Namaqualand copper mines.
Angus joined the Peninsula Canoe Club/Zandvlei Sports Club in 1978 and has been training in and racing canoes in the area ever since. Also a keen cyclist and birdwatcher, he has carried out the co-
ordinated waterbird counts (CWAC) on the Marina canals by canoe for many years and belongs to the Zandvlei Trust.
As holder of the MDGA’s Waterways portfolio, he works alongside the Zandvlei Trust as well as the Zandvlei Protected Areas Advisory Committee (ZPAAC) and staff at the Zandvlei Nature Reserve.
Angus and Frances have a daughter, Candice, and grand-daughter, Kira.
Valerie Benson, Events
Valerie, currently groups reservation manager with a Southern African tour operator, joined the tourism sector six years ago after previously working in the export and logistics sectors.
As a member of the MDGA ExCom, her main interests lie in wine, birding, gardening, and bringing the community together – especially as our Events portfolio holder.
This role involves putting events together and keeping residents updated and engaged in community activities.
Among others stakeholders, Valerie works closely with Marina residents, the Uitsig and Marina Cooks group, and community leaders such as Mymoena Scholtz at Where Rainbows Meet in Vrygrond.
Valerie moved to the Marina with her family in August 2015.
Scott Attfield, Parks
Scott spent his childhood looking for the crickets and dandelions in the cracked paving of inner-city Johannesburg. He has worked for various nurseries, run a landscaping business and written a book
on gardening. He currently owns two community retail stores. One deals with plants, their care, and appreciation. The other sells merchandise for domestic animals with a division that helps to inspire greater recognition of our urban wild animals. His biggest passion is our wild spaces.
“As an environmentally-minded person, I believe I have an obligation to focus on and work in industries that encourage equal acknowledgment of our natural
surroundings and the plants and animals that live in them.”
As an ExCom member, Scott’s primary focus is the parks and open spaces within the Marina. His portfolio covers street trees, walkways, playgrounds, and, of course, the continued propagation and planting of local trees, shrubs, and grasses. Ongoing maintenance includes signage, irrigation, tree care, wood chip mulch for parks and flowerbeds, plus future projects.
Scott, who moved to the Marina in 2019, lives his with partner, Tristan, and Tristan’s two children. Scott’s daughter, Danny, also lives in the Marina with her boyfriend and cat, Jade.
Patrick McKenna, Communications
Patrick moved to Burgee Bend with his wife, Hilary Alexander, six years ago. The couple run their own copywriting and photography agency working for clients in South Africa and overseas.
As holder of the MDGA Communications portfolio, Patrick is editor of the Marina da Gama News magazine.
He is also working with ExCom colleagues to implement a comprehensive upgrade of all the MDGA’s communication channels. This project involves building a new website while improving the quality and quantity of information the MDGA publishes on Facebook, email, and other platforms.
The main goal is to communicate more openly and regularly with residents about the issues that matter most to them while also promoting the benefits of living in the Marina.
Paul Higgins, Waterways and Archcom
Paul and his wife, Glenda, have been Marina residents since 1999, and he has two sons, Richard and Michael. After starting his career with the government agency, Surveys and Mapping, Paul moved into the private sector and has been partner in an engineering and hydrographic surveying company since 1987. He specialises in surveying on large engineering projects involving dams, power stations, tunnels, steel mills and harbours. He is now putting his skills to good use on behalf of the Marina community by assisting with the Archcom and Waterways portfolio.