Who's Who

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Staff  

Shaun Leonard, DirectorDirector Shaun Leonard working in the river

Shaun is an unashamed fish bloke, inspired by Jacques Cousteau after a wander around his research vessel Calypso in Mombasa harbour in 1966 and a childhood in and on the Indian Ocean and in the trout streams of southern Ireland. After degrees in marine biology and then pollution, Shaun has had a professional life in fishery management, both game and coarse. He was Head of Fishery Studies at Sparsholt College near Winchester until 2009, when he was gifted a fish bloke’s dream – the post of Director of the Wild Trout Trust. Shaun brings to the Trust a lengthy and ongoing scientific background and continuing involvement with the fisheries and fish farming sectors. He is an avid fisher though continuously disappointed that 45 years of practice appears only to make him worse at the sport with each outing

 

Andy Thomas, Conservation Officer (South)Andy Thomas

Andy has 35 years of river related experiences tucked away following a long and varied career working for Thames Water, The National Rivers Authority, The Environment Agency and, since 2008, as the WTT Conservation Officer for the South and East.

From November 2015, Andy will be working a three day week and is keen to develop the Trusts reputation for delivering high quality, low cost habitat enhancement projects. The passion for helping other conservation groups, land owners and angling clubs to improve streams and rivers still burns as strongly as ever and Andy is hoping that a slightly less intensive work load will enable him to continue passing on his practical knowledge and habitat related experience to the next generation of river menders for years to come.

 

Gareth Pedley, Conservation Officer (North) Gareth Pedley

Following a degree in Fishery Management, Gareth started his career with a season river keeping on the Chatsworth Estate in Derbyshire. This helped fund a year out, including 6 months fishing in New Zealand.

Gareth then took a post river keeping on the Haddon Estate in Derbyshire, where he contributed to the development of the Estate’s flag-ship wild catch-and-release fishery for trout and grayling.
After Haddon, Gareth worked for five years as a Fisheries Technical Officer for the Environment Agency, managing projects and providing advice in the North East, then moved to work as a shared resource with the WTT and Eden Rivers Trust. He now works full time for the WTT.
Gareth’s personal goal is to offer support and advice to fishery managers and clubs wanting to reduce stocking and promote wild fisheries, through conservation of wild fish stocks.

 

Dr Paul Gaskell, Trout in the Town Programme ManagerPaul Gaskell

An angler from the age of 7, Paul’s career in freshwater ecology has always been fuelled by a passion for angling. A degree in Pure and Applied Ecology at the University of Sheffield was followed by  three years working  as an experimental officer performing aquatic toxicity and bioaccumulation studies in invertebrates and fish. Returning to Sheffield University to carry out a Ph.D that established how water-insoluble chemical pollutants can enter aquatic food chains led to a post-doctoral research post. Paul managed a five year project to establish the ecological risk posed by motorway drainage storm runoff. The findings are incorporated into the updated “Design Manual For Roads and Bridges”. Moving in to the direct habitat conservation world has allowed Paul to use his skills to inform the WTT’s pro-active interventions to protect and improve biodiversity in the UK’s rivers. His academic ecological background also comes in handy when developing cheap aquaria for rearing invertebrates (Mayfly in the Classroom) as well as interrogating the evidence base that guides WTT actions and policy (stocking position statement and habitat interventions). Paul is a very keen fisherman and takes part  in volunteer invertebrate monitoring on his local rivers. 

 

Dr Tim Jacklin, Conservation Officer (Midlands)Tim Jacklin

Tim’s early interest in the aquatic environment was encouraged by his grandfather and the purchase of a Woolworths fishing kit, which led to many school holidays pursuing the fish of Lincolnshire’s rivers and ponds. This interest led to Nottingham University where Tim completed a degree in zoology followed by a PhD on the dynamics of juvenile coarse fish populations in the River Trent.  A career in the fisheries section of the National Rivers Authority / Environment Agency followed and his experience includes running a programme of fisheries surveys, abstraction issues relating to hydropower and thermal power stations, habitat restoration projects, the restoration of salmon to the Trent and the construction of fish passes. 

 

Mike Blackmore, Conservation Officer (South and West) Mike Blackmore

Stepping into the River Chew in Somerset for a school Geography project changed Mike’s life forever. The experience led to an Environmental Science BSc undertaking fieldwork from Dartmoor to the Malaysian rainforest, voluntary work with endangered White-clawed crayfish and a career managing large-scale river restoration projects with Cain Bio-Engineering Ltd.

Mike is a big believer in ‘wild rivers for wild fish’. He is passionate about re-wilding the UK's long over industrialised rivers. Mike was appointed by the WTT in response the high demand for the Trust's fieldwork and aims to make river restoration part of the everyday language of fisheries management.

 

Prof Jonathan Grey: Research & Conservation Officer (North)Jon Grey Professor Jonathan Wild trout trust lancaster university queen mary

Always fascinated by what he couldn't see beneath the water surface, Jon has converted a boyhood addiction to angling into a 'Peter Pan' academic career with research sites ranging from Antarctica to Zambia. With a degree in Aquatic Ecology from Lancaster University, he pursued an interest in aquatic food webs starting with PhD field work for 18 months on an Australian Antarctic research station. Jon was one of the first people in the UK to apply a particular technique called stable isotope analysis (alchemy) to answer aquatic ecological questions and did so to begin with on the wild waters of Loch Ness. Ferox featured in those early studies; in fact trout have always cropped up somewhere along the way. After 25 years of hardcore 'blue skies' academia (latterly as a Reader at Queen Mary University of London), and having served as a technical advisor to the WTT and recognised a shared passion for trout and their use as a sentinel species, Jon brings a new, complementary set of skills to the team. He will maintain academic links on a part-time basis via a Professor in Practice position at Lancaster.

 

Christina Bryant, Trust Admistrator (Mon, Tue, Thur).

Christina is the longest serving member of the WTT staff having joined in 2000, and has been a key contributor to the Trust's growth, turning her hand to every possible job short of installing large woody debris! Her background in the Navy and in journalism have given her a broad set of skills. Her talents include IT and graphic design as well as terrific organisational and administrative skills. As the only member of the team that doesn't fish, she has nonetheless acquired a good understanding of fishing and fishermen!

 

   

 

Denise Ashton, Communications and Fundraising (part time)Denise Ashton
Denise started as a volunteer with the Wild Trout Trust and served on the Executive Committee before managing her escape from a long career in the IT industry and joining as a part time member of staff. She studied Geography at University College London and, much later, Environmental Science with the Open University.  A late comer to both fishing and fish habitat, she is an expert in neither but has an endless curiosity and enthusiasm for work of the Trust.

 

David Marriott, Trust Secretary (part time)David Marriott

A partner in a Sheffield accountancy practice, David has been our Finance Officer since 2004 and is our Trust Secretary.  He is a life-long fly fisher and a passionate advocate of the Wild Trout Trust.  Currently he is Treasurer of Cressbrook & Litton Flyfishers’ Club, custodians of eleven miles of the Derbyshire Wye in the heart of the Peak District.

 

 

 

 

Rob Mungovan

Rob Mungovan

Rob joined the WTT in 2017. He is a passionate river man, local campaigner for river conservation and trout fisherman. He previously worked as an ecologist at South Cambs District Council.

He has 20 years of experience and many river improvement projects delivered, and his professional and voluntary contribution to river conservation won him WTT’s Wild Trout Hero award in 2016.

 

 

 


Trustees

Dr David Fraser - Chairman

David Fraser works for the Centre of Ecology and Hydrology (CEH) based near Oxford. David’s ecological roots lie in salmonid ecology gained in particular via his Ph.D. This focussed on the ecologically distinct co-occurring races of Arctic charr present in Lochs Rannoch Ericht and Tay in Scotland, and also explored the interactions of charr and trout in these waters. David then relocated to the flatlands of East Anglia, to take up the role of National Freshwater Fisheries adviser with English Nature dealing with a range of fisheries and conservation issues on designated sites.David is a keen, although, due to the commitments of a young family, currently infrequent angler of both rivers and lakes, with a penchant for waters where the choice of fly is less important than possession of a compass, map and walking boots.

 

Edward TwiddyEdward Twiddy

Edward studied as an undergraduate at Durham University (comfortably close to the River Wear) and undertook post graduate studies in life sciences and international law. He has worked for the UN in Iraq and on a number of international boundary disputes in Arabia and Asia.  In 2003 he joined the Treasury, followed by a secondment as Chief Executive for the North East Local Enterprise Partnership and is now Chief Innovations Officer & Company Secretary of Atom Bank.  He manages to combine his challenging role  in a new Bank with a young family and occasional fishing trips for sea trout and brown trout. Edward’s involvement with the WTT started with a project on the River Witham, and with the experience from that project he took on the then voluntary role of WTT Projects Coordinator, now managed by Tim Jacklin.  He became a Trustee and WTT Chairman in 2006.  

 

Dr Gary Mantle MBE 

Gary is long term friend and supporter of the Wild Trout Trust and is now a Trustee. He has a degree in ecology and his doctorate involved fish farming. He was awarded an MBE in 2000 for his services to conservation. Gary has been Director of the Wiltshire Wildlife Trust since 1990 and founded the Sensory Trust which champions equal environmental opportunities for people with a disability. Gary brings to the Board of Trustees a broad understanding of, and influence in, the world of conservation and sustainability. He is also a fisherman, and is as happy fishing for barbel as he is for trout. 

 

Chris WatsonChris Watson

Chris Watson is Partner and European Head of Telecommunications at CMS Cameron McKenna, a City law firm. He uses his legal skills to good effect as a Trustee, and when not working hard as a lawyer, he endeavours to grow the best wines in Chablis and Irancy and squeeze in some fishing in the UK and around the world.  

 

Dr Graham ColeyG Coley

A retired Company Executive, who originally worked as a research scientist, with a wide experience of the management of Science, Engineering and Technology businesses in both the Public and the Private sectors.  A dedicated flyfisher passionately concerned about ensuring a future for the wild brown trout, grayling and the Atlantic salmon.  A member of the Piscatorial Society, and the Flyfisher's Club, and involved with the Upper Oykel in Sutherland. A Trustee for the past ten years or so with the focus on advising about strategy, operational management and compliance to help the organisation to grow effectively and succeed in its mission whilst keeping its overhead costs to an absolutely essential minimum. 

 

Alan Kettle-Whiteallan kw with ferox

Alan is the Senior Fisheries Biologist with the Argyll Fisheries Trust. He graduated from Sparsholt College in 1997, with a BSc Hons Aquaculture and Fisheries Management. Before joining AFT in 1998, Alan had previously worked for the Environment Agency in England. He was promoted to senior fisheries biologist in 1999 and has led the AFT to many of it's achievements to date. His main interests are habitat restoration and the role of genetics in fisheries management, and he is particularly well known for catching, tracking and re-catching huge ferox trout from Loch Awe.

 

Dr Dafydd Evansdafydd wtih springer

Dafydd has a PhD in fisheries from Hull University and is currently an Area Manager with the Environment Agency. He was previously the EA’s Head of Fisheries, and in addition to his career in the EA he has worked with the Forestry Commission, the Freshwater Biological Association and Welsh Water. He has been a keen fisherman since the age of 9.

 

 

 

Dr Jenny Mant

Jenny Mant

Jenny joined the WTT as a Trustee in June 2016, but was already well known to the Trust as a judge of the WTT Conservation Awards where she has used her wide knowledge of all elements of river management to assess some really fantastic initiatives over the last 6 years.
Following a degree in Geography she completed a PhD on sediment and vegetation in dryland rivers in Spain. She worked at the River Restoration Centre for 14 years as head of the technical team and now works as a principal consultant for Ricardo-AEA in their water sector team.  
In her ‘spare’ time Jenny enjoys walking, cycling, traveling, tennis and seems to always end up being involved with projects within her local community. She is never averse to spending time along a river and is happy to get stuck in with the practical side of restoration.  Ultimately anything outdoors and she is happiest.   

 

 

 

 


Executive Commitee 

Kris Kent, Social mediaKris Kent working hard on the River Coln

Kris joined the Executive Committee in 2010 with special responsibilities for new media. He looks after the Trust's Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter sites and provides advice and support on communication. He is a regular volunteer at Trust events and hosts the Trust's annual Grayling Weekend in Derbyshire. Kris is a life member joining the Wild Trout Trust in 2007. He is a training and development consultant having previously worked in food manufacturing and retailing. When not helping out the Trust he is a keen flyfisherman and can be found most weekends by a river somewhere in the UK

 

Patrick Lloyd, Monnow Project and auctionPatrick Lloyd fishing

Patrick was a founder member of the Wild Trout Society and has been on the Executive/Volunteer committee ever since.  He played a major role, representing the WTT, in the £1.5m River Monnow Project.  He is currently Vice Chair and Treasurer of the Monnow Rivers Association and a trustee of the Wye & Usk Foundation.  A keen (dry fly) trout fisherman during the summer, he spends the winter months wildfowling in Orkney.

 

Sean Flanagan, Auction

Sean studied at Yale University and then Harvard Law school, spending time in Afghanistan before moving to the UK initially as a lawyer but latterly working in the Banking sector in London. He has served on the Executive Committee since 2002 and is responsible for instigating the highly successful auction run by the WTT on eBay each year and continues to make a huge contribution is supporting the auction. He has a young family but squeezes in occasional fishing trips in the UK and when he returns home to the USA.

 

Nigel Ash, Events

Nigel Ash is a lawyer turned journalist. He has served on the Nigel Ash and BV awardWTT executive since 1998. Now living in Devon, but often in Libya, he represents the interests of brown trout and those who fish for them on the committee of the Dart Angling Association. A keen long-distance walker, he is a call-out member of his local Mountain Rescue Team. Co-founder of a local internet service provider, he spent ten years helping the technically terrified start to find their way around the internet. Since moving back from Fleet Street he has wrestled with the horrible problem of having his busy office so close to some of the most beautiful fishing water in England. Unfortunately, all too often the office wins.

 

Dr Allan FrakeAllan Frake

Allan has served as a trustee for 8 years and worked in the water industry for over 40 years, surviving the River Authority, Wessex Water, NRA and the Environment Agency.  Although primarily working in the field of fisheries and conservation, occasional forays were made into projects involving water quality, sewage treatment and water supply processes. A veteran of being involved in over 100 river restoration projects, his passion was and still is associated with chalk stream ecology and management, and he continues to be actively involved with various river and wildlife trusts, and a number of consultancy groups.  A self confessed ‘non-discriminatory’ angler - equally at home enjoying bass fishing along the Purbecks, wreck fishing in the English Channel, pike fishing on the Stour and occasionally tempting the odd trout from Dorset chalk streams. Allan represents the Wild Trout Trust on various steering committees in the South on England. 

 

Peter Hayes, ResearchPeter Hayes

Peter Hayes is President of the Wilton FFC,  and a member of the Cressbrook and Litton Flyfishers Club as well as of the London Flyfishers Club. He has now retired from long service on various committees for the S&TA, the Game and Wildlife Conservancy, the Wessex Chalk Streams and Rivers Trust,the Riverfly Partnership and the Wiltshire Wildlife Trust so as to be able to write more.He is still active as a pension Trustee for the WPP Group and as the Secretary of the major industry body of market research agencies.  The author of numerous magazine articles on fly fishing and fly tying, and most recently of the critically acclaimed ' Fly Fishing Outside the Box', he also gives talks to fishing clubs. As a wet-boot river mender with many miles of (mainly) improved streams behind him, he presents on how best to manage rivers for fly. He has campaigned for 20 years against excessive aquifer abstraction. Peter's interests lie in imitative fly dressing and fly fishing for wild trout, and he is fascinated by trying to understand the behaviour of fish and of flies so as to become a better angler.

 

Dr Richard Handley, Graphic Design

Dr Andy Walker, Scotland / Research

 


Scientific Advisory Panel

Neil Auchterlonie, CEFAS

Dr Alan Butterworth, Angling Trust

Professor Adrian Collins, ADAS 

Professor Alastair Driver, Exeter University

Professor Andy Ferguson, Queens University

Dr Paul Kemp, Southampton University

Vaughan Lewis, Windrush AEC Consulting

Dr Guy Mawle, Angling Trust

Dr Mike Pawson, CEFAS (retired)

Professor David Sear, Southampton University

Dr Katie Sumner, Environment Agency

Dr John Webb, Marine Scotland Freshwater Laboratory

Dr Chris Williams

 


 President and Vice Presidents

President:  Jon Beer

Vice Presidents:

Matthew Wright

Ross Brawn

Charles Rangeley-Wilson

Professor David Bellamy

Brian Clarke

Sir Gareth Edwards

Oliver Edwards

Dr Malcolm Greenhalgh

Pat O’Reilly

Peter O’Reilly

Jeremy Paxman

Paul Procter

Rt Hon Lord (David) Steel of Aikwood

 


Sponsors

The following organisations support us with significant funding:

The Environment Agency

John Ellerman Foundation 

Thames Water

Yorkshire Water

Sage

Patagonia

Springwise / 1% for the Planet 

The Fishmongers Company

In addition, we receive substantial support from private donors and our members and through support to our annual auction.