How we are run

How we are run

Andrew Parkinson/2020VISION

Who we are

Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust is a local registered charity (number 210531) concerned with all aspects of nature conservation. We are a membership organisation, governed by its Memorandum and Articles of Association. 17,000 members currently support our work.

Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust is an independent charity. We belong to a powerful conservation network of 46 Wildlife Trusts across the UK , The Wildlife Trusts acts as a national voice, generates support and provides leadership for the movement.

Together the Wildlife Trusts manage more than 2,300 nature reserves, campaign tirelessly on behalf of wildlife and run thousands of projects and events throughout the UK. Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust is your local partner in this powerful conservation network.

How we are organised

Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust is managed by a Council of Trustees (elected from its members) who oversee the governance and strategic direction of the Trust. Decision making is undertaken by Trustees at Council meetings and at the Annual General Meeting for members. You can find out more about these individuals and the skills and expertise that they bring to us below.

Our day-to-day work is delivered by a team of over 30 staff assisted by more than 700 volunteers. In addition, we have a network of local groups in the two counties that support our work.

Our Trustees

Chairman - Ann Tomlinson

Ann was born and educated in West Cornwall. After a degree in history at Oxford University, she moved to London, qualifying as a Chartered Accountant in 1982. She spent most of her career in the City of London, specializing in investment business. She latterly worked for a succession of financial services regulators, where she was responsible for developing and implementing policy for marketing, conduct of business, financial adequacy and compensation, at both national and European level. Ann and her husband John moved from London in 1998 looking for somewhere nice to live, and found Rutland. Ann ran her own consultancy business for several years and started volunteering at Rutland Water. In 2002 she became a member of Trust Council and Honorary Treasurer.

As well as her Trust activities, Ann chairs East Midlands Environment Link, a grouping of environmental NGOs monitoring the impact of government policy at a regional level. She is also is the out-going Chair of the Rutland Natural History Society. Ann has always had an interest in natural history and finds it very satisfying that her business and policy skills can be used in helping protect the natural world. She has travelled extensively, usually looking at wildlife on the way, and has a particular fondness for Northwestern USA, central Europe, Southern Africa, pachyderms (not often found in Rutland), and all small cuddly animals.

Vice Chair - Bob Bearne

Bob moved to Leicestershire in 1984 to take up a job as a Probation Officer with Leicestershire & Rutland Probation Service, with whom he still works, now as an Assistant Chief Executive Officer. He has also been Chair of the Governing Bodies if two different schools. Bob has always been a keen amateur naturalist, a love for which he got from his father. His teenage son is a very keen and knowledgeable naturalist, particularly regarding birds, and many days and weekends are spent by them birdwatching around the country or locally. Whilst not claiming any specialist or professional conservation or environmental knowledge, Bob hopes to bring his knowledge of strategic planning, staff management and budgeting to his role on the Trust Council. In addition, having lived and worked in the city of Leicester for many years, he is particularly keen to broaden the demographic of those engaged in the work of the Trust to those living in urban areas without ready access to the natural world.

Hon. Treasurer - Andrew Thorpe

Andy is a proud Yorkshire man but moved to Leicestershire in 1986 to come to the University of Loughborough, where he has lived ever since. His degree was in Accounting and Financial Management and then working as an auditor he qualified as a chartered accountant before moving into industry.

He worked at a Nottingham based biopharmaceutical company for over 25 years, latterly as Chief Financial Officer but has recently retired. Andy likes watching many sports particularly cricket and tennis and was a long-term member of a local amateur theatre group.  He is a keen gardener and walker enjoying nature by being in the middle of it and has been a member of LRWT for around 20 years. Now that he has available time, he is looking to take part in some practical volunteering with the Trust as well as joining council where he hopes his financial and management skills will prove useful. 

Andy has been a trustee of three other charities. He was trustee for a development charity working in water provision in Africa that his brother started seeing it grow from start-up to over £2million income in around 8 years and has been treasurer and trustee for his local church and the charity overseeing a grouping of 12 local churches.

Hon. Secretary - Maggie Morland

Maggie moved to Leicestershire thirty years ago after a childhood and further education in Lancashire and Cumbria. A career in teaching and residential social work followed, and she gained a Masters degree in Education at Nottingham Trent University while teaching in Ruddington near Nottingham. Her final post with Nottinghamshire County Council was as Head of Environmental Education Day Centres, organising and leading activities for visitors ranging from nursery schools to universities. Since then, Maggie has worked as a freelance ‘Learning Outside the Classroom’ Educational Development Consultant, creating wildlife, environmental and heritage-based educational materials for Local Authorities, Country Parks, Local Councils, charities, environmental partnerships and businesses across the East Midlands.

Maggie has been a member of LRWT since the 1980s, organising talks and other events with the Charnwood Local Group for many years. She has been a Council member and Honorary Secretary since 2009, enjoying her role supporting and helping to develop the educational activities of the Trust. Since childhood Maggie has always loved wildlife watching and conservation activities of any kind, walking, travelling, gardening and painting wildlife and landscapes in many different media. Now retired, Maggie concentrates on her roles as a Parish Tree Warden and an LRWT Trustee and Honorary Secretary. 

Trustee - Anthony Biddle

Anthony Biddle has been a member of Trust Council for over 30 years. He is a Chartered Biologist and was, until his retirement in 2013, Technical Director of a private vegetable research organisation. As a plant pathologist, he has specialised in crop protection and as a keen naturalist, has an appreciation of the need to integrate wildlife conservation with profitable agricultural production. He is Chairman of the Rutland Group of the LRWT and is very 3 much involved in the organisation of local events for Rutland members.

Trustee - John Bleby

Born and bred in Leicester, John has lived in Whetstone with his partner and two step-children for the last three years after spending the previous decade in Foxton. He has spent the last 20 years working in sales and marketing of laboratory equipment primarily to the NHS and he holds an advanced certificate in marketing, a diploma in management and a Masters degree in Biomedical Science. Wildlife in general and birds in particular have been a passion since childhood evenings spent dissecting owl pellets at Young Ornithologists club meetings at Beauchamp College in the early 1970s. He is a member of the BTO, RSPB & LROS and has been a trustee of the LRWT for the last two years having been a member for around 10 years.

Trustee - Linda Jones

Linda is a long term member of the Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust and a Fellow of the RSPB. She has been an active volunteer at Rutland Water Nature Reserve since January 2010, where she has done a variety of roles, including in the visitor centres, the Rutland Osprey Project, the WildSkills volunteer group for young people, work on the planning of the Volunteers Training Centre, chairing the Volunteers' Forum and helping out at Birdfair. Linda has been a birdwatcher since her early 20's and has enjoyed wildlife and birdwatching trips to The Gambia with the Rutland Osprey Project three times, Kenya, South Africa, Svalbard, India, Scotland, a volunteer researcher in Namibia, and as part of other holidays. She loves North Norfolk. Linda was born in Leicester, brought up in Leicestershire and has lived in Hallaton for the past 29 years. She attended University College London where she received a BA Hons degree in Medieval and Modern History and studied at Leicester University for her postgraduate probation training and the Diploma in Social Work. Her career was in Criminal Justice. She was Chief Probation Officer in Leicestershire & Rutland for 16 years, worked in Prison Service Headquarters for 3 years leading on women prisoners and prisons, and then a Senior Civil Servant/ Regional Commissioner for Prisons and Probation, before she retired in December 2009. Linda's career has given her wide experience and skills in leadership, strategic and operational planning, budget/ performance monitoring and management, partnership working, equal opportunities and policy formulation. Linda was given an Honorary Doctorate of Laws from both Leicester and De Montfort Universities in recognition of her work in probation locally and nationally. Linda has considerable experience in governance of charities. She has been a Trustee of 6 other charities, including current roles of Chair of the Board of Trustees at Voluntary Action South Leicestershire (VASL), based in Market Harborough, for the past 7 years; and Chair of the Board of Trustees of her village Charity, 5 the Hallaton and Isabella Stenning Trust. She was also Chair of the Board of Voluntary Action Leicestershire (VAL) for 3 years between 2012 and 2015. In all of these organisations, she has led on reviews of governance and put in place systems in line with Good Governance as required by the Charity Commission, including risk registers, conflicts of interest registers, role descriptions for board officers, skills audits and the open recruitment of trustees.

Trustee - Andrew Moffat

Andrew is a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, having originally qualified as a rural practice surveyor, and a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society. He is also a Chartered Environmentalist and Chartered Geographer and Certified Facility Manager. Andrew has spent his career as a civil servant working for the Ministry of Defence in a senior management position. He has a MA from Kings College, London having earlier studied at the Royal Agricultural College, Cirencester and at the Joint Services Command and Staff College. 6 Andrew’s main skills and interests are in strategic real estate management, operational planning, sustainable development and conservation. He is a life member of Falklands Conservation, The Royal Scottish Geographical Society and the Royal Agricultural Society of England and an annual member of numerous organisations including the British Trust for Ornithology, the National Trust, the Country Landowners Association, the South Georgia Association and various other sporting and special interest societies. As well as being a trustee of LRWT he is a member of RSWT's Audit and Resources Committee, a local committee member for the CLA, Honorary Secretary of the Shackleton Scholarship Fund and Executive Secretary of the United Kingdom Falkland Islands Trust.

Trustee - Helen Nott

Helen grew up in Hertfordshire and then studied Biology at University in York and a PhD in Animal Behaviour at Reading University. She moved to Leicestershire in 1988 to work for Mars (then Pedigree Petfoods) initially as an animal behaviourists studying wild bird feeding and developing a range of toys for dogs and cats. Her career at Mars moved to market research and then marketing and in 2008 she moved into the charity sector as a Director for the Woodland Trust. Helen now runs her own consultancy business supporting organisations that do good with strategy, audience insight, marketing and fundraising. She has worked with a number of environmental and conservation charities including The Wildlife Trusts, Earthwatch and the Soil Association, as well as a range of smaller regional charities from London to Sheffield. Helen’s love of wildlife was kindled by long walks with her Gran who was a mine of folklore and plant names. She is heritage warden for her village, a trustee for its community park and desperately tries to encourage her daughters to recognise plants. She’s keen to inspire more people to appreciate wildlife and to value it as part of their daily lives.

Trustee - Peter Williams

Peter lives in Anstey with his wife, Alison and is a father of two girls. Having moved to Anstey in 1979 he worked for Leicestershire County Council in various roles, including as Head of Environmental Management, until his recent retirement. With the County Council he was fortunate to be involved with various environmental programmes including land reclamation in the Leicestershire and South Derbyshire coalfield, National Forest, Country Parks and Rights of Way service, and Climate Change initiatives. Peter is a keen birdwatcher, having formed an interest in Norfolk and Cyprus in the 1960's and is ViceChairman of the Leicestershire and Rutland Ornithological Society (LROS) and is President of the Leicestershire and Rutland Ramblers. Peter is an Ambassador for the National Forest and a Board Member of the National Forest Charitable Trust. He enjoys volunteering at Beacon Hill and Watermead country parks and with LROS.

Trustee - Matt Youngs

Matt was born and raised in the Cotswolds before moving to Loughborough to join the University as an undergraduate Geography student in 2015. After graduating in 2018, he went on to complete a Masters in Environmental Monitoring and Management at Loughborough. As both an undergraduate and postgraduate student, his research specialised in freshwater ecology, in particular the impact of anthropogenic processes on macroinvertebrate community structures. Upon completion of his Masters, Matt served for two years at Loughborough Students’ Union as a sabbatical officer: first as the Executive Officer responsible for Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion, and latterly as President of the Union. In both these capacities he served as an Executive Trustee of the Students’ Union, and also as a lay member of Loughborough University’s Council during his term as President.

In September 2021 he started on Loughborough University’s Graduate Management Trainee Scheme: a fast-track programme for management and leadership in Higher Education. Outside of work, Matt volunteers with East Midlands Ambulance Service as a Community First Responder, attending 999 calls in the local area. He also enjoys walking, long-distance running, and photography.

Trustee - Silviu Petrovan

Silviu is a qualified vet with a PhD in Animal Ecology and working as Senior Researcher at the University of Cambridge. Before that he worked as Head of Conservation at Froglife for five years (2011-2016) and remains a trustee there. He is broadly interested in understanding the effects of anthropogenic changes on biodiversity and improving evidence-based solutions for counteracting negative effects at population or landscape scale. His main areas of work have been on:

(1) road impacts (mortality, fragmentation,  isolation, pollution) and evidence-based mitigation solutions for amphibian and small and medium-sized mammals. This includes movement patterns and using road-based surveys for large-scale monitoring

(2) harnessing the power of citizen science in long-term datasets for biodiversity monitoring, including for emerging diseases

(3) how landscape management shapes the outcome of plant-animal interactions such as grazing and species distribution in relation to lagomorphs.

His current work at Conservation Evidence includes the update for the Bird Conservation book as well as editing the annual What Works In Conservation volume. Some of his research work has been featured widely in the media: 

Wildlife and livestock a risk factor in future pandemics, say studies | Infectious diseases | The Guardian

Trustee - Abigail Wilkin

Abigail has lived in Lutterworth, Leicestershire all her life. She is currently studying an undergraduate degree in Environmental Science with the Open University, and is passionate about nature and environmental sustainability.

Before University she was home-schooled, which meant a unique opportunity to experience more outdoor learning and develop a love for the UK’s native wildlife. Since 2020 Abigail has been a Young Adult Ambassador for Warwickshire Wildlife Trust, which involves learning about nature and campaigning to help save it. She also volunteers for a food waste charity called FareShare.

When she’s finished her studies, Abigail would like to get a job in the green economy, helping nature’s recovery and reducing our carbon emissions to net zero. At the moment she works as a tennis coach, having being a keen tennis player for many years, and is passionate about encouraging equal female participation in sports and other under-represented fields. This is her first experience of being a trustee.  

Trustee - Bev Smith

Bev is a passionate and enthusiastic supporter of the work of the Wildlife Trust, in particular recognising the benefits that nature can bring to communities’ quality of life and health and wellbeing. Proud to have been born and brought up in Wales where a sense of community was paramount, she watched the transformation of her home through the ‘green’ regeneration of a traditional mining valley. Her passion for the environment led her to take a Science degree in environmental studies at Manchester university. Her career has always been in public service spending 8 years in Lincolnshire Police force and 25 years in local government serving communities across Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire and she is currently the Chief Executive of North West Leicestershire Council, which is at the heart of the National Forest.

Her current role provides opportunities to influence policy and shape places and ensure active environments are supported and flourish. She is chair of Leicestershire and Rutland sports partnership strongly believing in increasing the accessibility of activity and sport for all communities and the role that has in tackling health inequalities. Her role in contributing to the response and recovery planning for COVID 19 has also reinforced the importance of the environment and wildlife in supporting health and wellbeing. She is a keen gardener and birdwatcher being fortunate to live in woodland in Rutland with her husband and very keen bird follower Hetty her Norfolk terrier!

Our finances

Full accounts are available on request

Income expenditure 2020-2021

Income expenditure 2020-2021

The latest copies of our Annual Reviews

At Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust, we believe in being open, transparent and honest in our reporting. We submit full reports and accounts annually in accordance with our charitable status and objectives, and you can read our latest reports below, if you would like a copy from further back or more information, please contact us.

Annual Review 2020-2021

Annual Review 2019-2020

Annual Review 2018-2019

Annual Review 2017-2018