Conference 2013 Speakers

Richard Benyon MP

Richard Benyon was elected as the Conservative MP for Newbury in 2005 and re-elected in May 2010.

In May 2010 Richard was appointed Minister for the Natural Environment and Fisheries as part of the Conservative-Liberal Coalition Government. Prior to this appointment he was the Shadow Minister for the Environment, Fisheries and Wildlife. He has also served as a Party Whip and on the Home Affairs Select Committee.

He was born and brought up in West Berkshire. As well as being a local farmer and businessman, Richard has been involved in a number of local organizations and as a former soldier and a founder Trustee of the charity Help for Heroes, Richard takes a great interest in defense issues and the welfare of servicemen and their families. Other special interests include Africa, particularly Zimbabwe, Northern Ireland and of course, rural affairs.

He has campaigned on a number of health issues including care for those with learning difficulties in the NHS and was a member of the All Party Kidney Group and the All Party Group for Specialist Orthopaedic Services and Hospitals before becoming a Minister.

James Beresford

James Beresford is Chief Executive Officer of VisitEngland.

Howard Davies

Howard Davies is CEO of the National Association for AONBs.

Before this he spent two years on secondment from the Countryside Council for Wales (CCW) as the Director of Wildlife Trust Wales. Before this Howard worked closely with AONBs and National Parks of Wales as CCW’s protected landscapes policy officer.

He has worked as a senior warden for an AONB, county officer for the BTCV and in industry and agriculture. He was involved in the early development of the AONB Staff Forum and more recently supported further development of the NAAONBs in his role at CCW.

Howard is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.

Tim O’Riordan OBE

Professor O’Riordan is Emeritus Professor of Environmental Sciences at the University of East Anglia.

He is European Advisor to the UK Sustainable Development Commission and a member of Sustainability East, the East of England Sustainable Development Round Table. His research deals with the themes associated with better governance for sustainability. He is also active in the evolution of sustainability science partnerships. His direct work relates to designing future coastlines in East Anglia in England so that they are ready for sea level rise and the creation of sound economies and societies for a sustainable future. He also sits on the Growth and Climate Change Panel for Anglian Water Group.

His other research interests cover interdisciplinary approaches to pursuing the transition to sustainability, risk perception and communication, business and social virtue.

Tim plays classical double bass in a Norwich orchestra, which he has chaired for over 25 years.’riordan.htm

Charles Beardall

Doctor Charles Beardall is Area Manager of the Environment Agency.

Charles studied at the University of East Anglia for his first degree in Biological Sciences and then at St Andrews University in Scotland for a Doctorate in Physiology. Before joining the Environment Agency he worked for the Suffolk Wildlife Trust as Deputy Director and Conservation Manager.

Charles was formerly the Water Resource Manager and Fisheries Recreation and Biodiversity Manager for East Anglia before becoming the Area Manager, having also spent eighteen months as Anglian Region’s Flood and Coastal Risk Manager in 2010/11. In his current role as Area Manager, Charles is responsible for all Environment Agency activities in much of Norfolk, Suffolk and Essex.

Peter Simpson

Peter Simpson is Managing Director of Anglian Water and Chairman of Water UK.

Peter’s 25 year international career in the water industry has covered eight countries across three continents, including Regional Director for Europe and South America based in the Czech Republic, and Senior VP (Operations) based in the USA.

Peter is a founder member of Cambridge University’s ‘Programme for Sustainability Leadership’ Climate Change Leaders Group. This influences at a national, EU and global level to reduce carbon emissions, and to champion resource efficiency in water, energy and other natural resources.

Peter is also a champion of Business in the Community’s ‘Seeing is Believing Programme’ that targets business help and support to areas of deprivation across the UK. He has recently established a project for young people in Cambridgeshire to improve employability and skills training.

Paul Hammett

Paul Hammett is the NFU’s newly appointed national water resources specialist.

Water dominated much of the NFU’s environmental policy work during 2012 and the NFU has tasked Paul – who has many years’ experience as an environmental policy adviser in East Anglia – with developing NFU activity on improving our long-term water security and in achieving a fair share of water for food production.

Paul works closely with all AONB Partnerships in eastern England on issues relating to landscape and the ways that farmers mange land and water.

In 2012 the NFU produced a report in partnership with the Suffolk Coast and Heaths AONB Partnership which focused on climate change adaptation measures available to local farmers.

Tamsin Phipps

Tamsin Phipps is Government and Public Affairs Manager for the British Canoe Union.

Louise Burton

Louise Burton is Lead Adviser Marine Renewables for Natural England.

Charles Rangeley-Wilson

Charles Rangeley-Wilson is Co-founder and President of The Wild Trout Trust.

Charles is also an author and conservationist. His most recent book Silt Road – The Story of a Lost River, is the history of a small Chilterns chalk-stream and the rural and urban landscapes which surround it.

He works with WWF UK in their campaigns for the conservation of English chalk streams and he is an Angling Trust Ambassador. Charles helped to establish the Norfolk Rivers Trust and wrote the Trust’s first whole river catchment restoration plan for the River Nar.

Jonah Tosney

Jonah Tosney is Nine Chalk Rivers Project Officer for the Norfolk Rivers Trust.

Andrea Kelly

Andrea Kelly is Senior Ecologist at the Broads Authority.

Andrea has worked in Norfolk and Suffolk on ecological management and applied research for over 20 years. Floating around on boats with the National Rivers Authority research team led on to scientific study of a multi-million pound lake restoration for the Environment Agency and Broads Authority. This flowed into community consultation roles in managing and coordinating input into the Broads Flood Alleviation Project . As the Head of Conservation with the Authority her team of officers and volunteers managed extensive wetland habitat and a research programme to match.

Her current role as Senior Ecologist incorporates managing a portfolio of projects and people which include landscape scale Catchment and Conservation, Biosecurity projects in the UKs largest protected wetland. She also chairs the Norfolk Biodiversity Partnership, Norfolk Non-Native Species Initiative and is a board member for Wild Anglia.

Angela enjoys horse riding along the Yare Valley and growing far too much veg on the allotment.

Trazar Astley-Reid

Trazar Astley-Reid is Suffolk Estuaries Officer at the Suffolk Coast and Heaths AONB Partnership.

Rob Spray

Rob Spray is a diver.

Rob started diving around 15 years ago attracted by the opportunity to see his favourite animals at first hand rather than through books and documentaries. That hobby has grown into a consuming passion and he (with his partner Dawn Watson) co-ordinate the Marine Conservation Society’s Seasearch survey of marine wildlife in East Anglia. Much of their recent work has focused on North Norfolk’s amazing chalk reef, which has been identified as a possible marine conservation zone due to its biodiversity and unique geology. His photography of the chalk has shown visitors and residents that nature doesn’t stop at the shore!

Barry Bendall

Barry Bendall is Director South and East of The Rivers Trust.

The Rivers Trust is the umbrella body of the rivers trust movement in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Prior to joining The Rivers Trust, Barry gained a broad experience of applied science and academic research working as a fish biologist for the Centre for Environment Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas), an executive agency of Defra.

Since joining The Rivers Trust in 2011, his role has been to co-ordinate, represent and develop the aims and interests of the member trusts in the promotion of sustainable, holistic and integrated catchment management based on a framework of sound science, partnership, and consistency.

Barry represents the rivers trust movement on numerous regional and national boards and advisory groups including the Anglian River Basin Liaison Panel, the Catchment Sensitive Farming advisory group and the Riverfly partnership.

Geoff Doggett

Geoff Doggett is Chairman of the River Waveney Trust.

A native of Norfolk, Geoff started the River Waveney Trust in 2012 inspired by a source-to-the-sea canoe trip. Now with over 420 members, Geoff chairs the Trust which is growing fast and is fully committed to conserving and improving the catchment. The Trust recently acquired the old Otter Trust buildings and land at Earsham and is busy repurposing them as the River Waveney Study Centre.

Geoff lives in Harleston and is a keen boater and sailor with a lapstrake canoe on the Waveney and a narrow boat on the River Wissey.

A committed community player, Geoff is also a trustee and volunteer driver for Borderhoppa, the local community transport provider.

Rob Young

Rob Young is Coast and Communities Partnership Manager at North Norfolk District Council.

Throughout his career as a planning professional Rob has been interested in the role of planning in influencing and managing change. Working within a multidisciplinary team, developing integrated approaches to managing coastal change on what is euphemistically referred to as the most “dynamic” part of the UK coastline, he helped develop North Norfolk’s successful £3 million ‘Coastal Change Pathfinder’ bid. This piloted innovative ways of adapting and sustaining vulnerable coastal communities in the face of significant environmental threats. The successful bid successfully blended planning and coast protection functions to develop a spatial approach, which has helped to inform Government policy, as well as bring tangible outcomes to areas that were not too long ago plunged into a state of despair.

Andy Millar

Andy Millar is Senior Adviser (Coasts) at Natural England.

Andy has worked in nature conservation for over 20 years and Natural England for nearly 6 years on coastal and marine issues. He currently provides leadership to NE’s coastal work from Lincolnshire to the Thames Estuary, involving, among other things, advice on how wildlife should be safeguarded in flood and erosion management, and meeting local people and groups whose communities are affected by coastal change.

In previous lives, he was Norfolk Wildlife Trust’s Reserves Manager, and a Conservation Officer with English Nature.

Elsewhere, he’s busy drumming in a garage surf band, supporting Norwich City FC, and growing stuff on his allotment.

Tom Williamson

Tom Williamson is Professor of Landscape History and head of the Landscape Group within the School of History at the University of East Anglia where he has been teaching and researching since 1985.

He has written widely on landscape archaeology, agricultural history, and the history of landscape design, both in relation to East Anglia and more generally.