People

People

Swallows by Alan Price/Gatehouse studio

People

Meet the people who lead the Berks, Bucks & Oxon Wildlife Trust.

President, Steve Backshall

Steve Backshall, President of the Berks, Bucks & Oxon Wildlife Trust

Steve is world-renowned adventurer, naturalist, writer and television presenter. You may have seen him on BBC TV shows such as Big Blue Live, Deadly 60, and Lost Land of the Volcano. In 2010 he became President of the Berks, Bucks & Oxon Wildlife Trust (BBOWT) because of his passion for local wildlife, and enthusiasm for more children to be intrigued and inspired by nature.  Watch Steve introduce you to BBOWT.

Barbara Muston, Chair of the Board of Trustees

Barbara Muston, Chair of Berks, Bucks & Oxon Wildlife Trust

Barbara was elected Chair in December 2017, having been a trustee since 2012. In a career spent largely in government and the City, Barbara specialised in UK and EU company law and corporate governance, and regulation of takeover bids and financial services, latterly working at the Takeover Panel. In 2015, Barbara was appointed as Honorary Professor at Queen Mary, University of London. Barbara has volunteered for BBOWT for many years as a stock watcher at the Dancersend and Aston Clinton Ragpits reserves and is a keen wildlife gardener, birdwatcher and amateur botanist, especially enjoying encouraging the wild orchids in her garden.

Estelle Bailey, Chief Executive

Estelle Bailey by Ric Mellis

Estelle Bailey by Ric Mellis

Estelle joined BBOWT in January 2014 after many years working in nature conservation with other Wildlife Trusts. Estelle leads the team of Directors who are delivering the Berks, Bucks & Oxon Wildlife Trust’s Strategic Plan 2016 -2021: Be part of nature’s recovery. Working with the board of Trustees she ensures the sustainable development of the Trust to meet new challenges for wildlife. Estelle is a keen ornithologist, with a lifelong passion for wildlife. To contact Estelle, please email info@bbowt.org.uk

Patrick Taylor, Director of Operations

Patrick Taylor

Patrick Taylor by Adrian Wallington

Patrick joined BBOWT in March 2016. His role as Director of Operations brings together all the vital backroom functions - finance, HR, facilities and IT - that enable us to do our work, as well as co-ordinating our business strategy with the Chief Executive. Patrick is very experienced in charity management including 15 years as CEO of the mental health charity Oxfordshire Mind, where he developed the organisation through a period of expansion and change.  

Tom Beckett, Director of External Affairs

Thomas Beckett

Tom Beckett by Adrian Wallington

Tom joined BBOWT in April 2016 and leads on the Trust’s Fundraising, Advocacy and Communications work with people and organisations across the three counties. Tom leads the BBOWT teams working hard to ensure the five themes of our Strategic Plan 2016 -2021: Be part of nature’s recovery are communicated. Tom believes that everyone can and should be enthusiastic about enhancing an environment that provides safe homes, water, air, food, wellbeing and inspiration. 

Christopher Williams, Conservation & Education Director, Buckinghamshire

Chris Williams

Chris Williams by Adrian Wallington

Chris leads the Trust’s Buckinghamshire operations including the development of College Lake nature reserve, a visitor centre of regional significance. He is working on the development of the new Bernwood Forest and River Ray Living Landscape, which will increase the amount of wildlife-rich land and engage more people with nature. Chris is active in the Buckinghamshire & Milton Keynes Natural Environment Partnership, encouraging different sectors to collaborate and meet the needs of our environment, the economy, and social and health objectives.  

Neil Clennell, Conservation & Education Director, Oxfordshire

Neil Clennell, Conservation & Education Director, Oxfordshire

Neil leads the Trust’s Oxfordshire operations, including the annual Oxford Festival of Nature, urban wildlife projects Wild Banbury and Wild Oxford, and managing Chimney Meadows, the only nature reserve to span the River Thames. Neil has been fascinated by wildlife for as long as he can remember, and encourages his team to deliver the Trust’s strategic aims by working with communities. With more than 20 years’ experience in conservation biology and a role as senior ecologist with a planning consultancy Neil also advises BBOWT’s planning officers.  

George Murray, Head of Marketing and Communications

George Murray

George Murray by Adrian Wallington

George joined BBOWT in 2004 and now leads the Membership, Marketing and Communications Teams. He has also overseen major fundraising campaigns, including buying new nature reserves and the development of Woolley Firs Environmental Education Centre and College Lake visitor centre. Before joining the Trust, George worked for local and national charities in a variety of communication and fundraising roles. 

Laura Pepper, Head of Fundraising

Laura Pepper

Laura Pepper by Adrian Wallington

Laura joined the Trust in 2016 following 12 years of fundraising, mainly in the heritage sector. Laura heads the Fundraising Team which manages relationships with corporates through the Investors in Wildlife scheme, bids successfully for grants, and finds new sources of funding for projects that enable the Trust to deliver its Strategic Plan. Laura is a member of the Institute of Fundraising.  

Trustees

Alongside our staff, our team of Trustees play a vital role in the governance and strategic leadership of the organisation.

Meet our Trustees

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