The WJ Mills (Cottages) Trust was set up by the benefactor’s son, Thomas Richards Mills, and was run by him until his death in 1951 when his son, William John Mills, took over the responsibility. He continued to serve the charity for 41 years and during his time brought in his two children as trustees and latterly expanded the team with local people. The board of trustees, today, comprises the following seven members.
Elizabeth Wilson (née Mills)
An active trustee since 1980, Liz took over the chair of the charity in 1992, relinquishing it in
2004, but resuming it again in 2018. Being a direct descendent of the founder and accompanying her father on many visits, she has
been exposed to the Trust all her life and has grown up with a real affinity for St Day and a passion
for continuing the aims and ambitions of her great-grandfather.
Charity work away from the area
has included a "PHAB" week (for the Physically Handicapped, Able Bodied), a befriending scheme
with the elderly in Dorset, the Devon County Association for the Blind and at a Day Centre for people
with mental health problems and with physical disabilities. She was also Volunteer Co-ordinator in
Tiverton for 4 years, recruiting and managing volunteers for many local charities.
Sally Burley (née Mills)
Sally grew up in North Cornwall and moved to St Day in 1976 when her family returned there. She trained and qualified as a riding instructor and worked with horses for many years. Her husband grew up in Crofthandy and their three sons all attended St Day and Carharrack Community School. She has always had a keen interest in local affairs, being involved with the local playgroup and school. She is interested in Cornish music, dance and culture, involving herself in various events around Cornwall. She is also a keen singer and member of two local choirs. She is very proud of her family connections to WJ Mills and all that the Trust does for St Day.
Roger was born and brought up in St Day, a descendant of the Mills family on his mother Paula's side. He went to Trewirgie School, Redruth before going on to Cornwall College. In 1970 he joined the GPO, later BT, as a Telephone Engineer, working in the local exchange area including ten years at Goonhilly Earth Station; he retired from the company in 2011. Two years later he started as a volunteer for 'Life Recycle', a charity based in Camborne, which works with disadvantaged children teaching them to renovate and rebuild bicycles donated by the public. Roger has been a trustee of the WJ Mills (Cottages) Trust since 1989.
Paul joined the WJ Mills (Cottages) Trust in the summer of 2000. A Redruth boy born and bred, Paul moved to St Day in 1985 when he married a local St Day girl. Through Paul's connections in the village, he knows many of the residents personally and is fully committed to supporting the aims of
the trust for generations to come. Paul and his family attend St Day Methodist Church, where he is the treasurer, and always support the annual Feast Monday by participating in the Feast Dance. Paul is also a volunteer at Gwennap Pit – an impressive open air amphitheatre and Cornish mining world heritage site.
Steve was born in the West Midlands but, whilst a student in London, met a St Day Girl, married her on leaving London and settled in St Day in 1975. He has lived here ever since and both of his daughters attended St Day & Carharrack Community School. In September 1975 he began work as a teacher of Modern Foreign Languages (German & French) at Penzance Girls Grammar School (now Penwith 6th Form College) and moved to Penair School in Truro when it opened in 1978. He later became Head of Department and retired in 2007. He has been a member of several organisations in St Day, having played both football and cricket for the village teams. When St Day Parish Council was formed in 1985, he became the first Parish Clerk and still continues in this position. He joined the Cottages Trust in July 2000 and is now also Vice-Chair of the Grant Fund.
Keith was born in Redruth and has lived in and around Redruth all his life, moving to St Day in 1998. His secondary education was at Truro School. Keith qualified as an accountant in 1989 and established a new practice in Truro in 1991. Keith is married to Deb and they have two adult sons, who are both at university. Appointed as a trustee of the WJ Mills (Cottages) Trust in 2010, Keith served as a governor at St Day & Carharrack Community School from April 2003 until August 2017, culminating in almost 4 years as the chair of Governors. He is also involved in the leadership of St Day Methodist Church and has been a trustee of several local charities and trusts.
Chris has been married to Liz for 17 years and they have two children. Chris' career has been with the written word, initially in journalism and later in public relations; he is now retired and pursuing his twin passions of genealogy and local history through his work with the Lustleigh Archives and Lustleigh Society in the Dartmoor village where Chris and Liz now live. Chris is a comparative newcomer to the West Country having moved to Devon in 1994 creating an 'outpost' for the London-based PR firm in which he was a partner; Chris spent his earlier years in the south-eastern counties of England, having been born in Kent. Chris joined the board of trustees of the WJ Mills (Cottages) Trust in 2015.