Speaker biographies

We're delighted to have welcomed speakers from across the UK and Europe to present at BogFest 2017. Please see a full list below, including some biographies:

Adam Cormack - Head of Communications, The Wildlife Trusts

Adam Cormack leads the central communications team at The Wildlife Trusts, one of the UK’s largest nature conservation NGOs. A firm believer in the power of communication as an act of conservation, he has worked at The Wildlife Trusts for 10 years after a music career that didn’t quite take off.
Adam has overseen a range of large-scale communications projects and worked on campaigns for protected areas in UK seas, wildflower meadows and recently the Trusts’ successful 30 Days Wild campaign. He can be found rambling around local wild places close to home in Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire, often with a small child in tow, in search of inspiration, joy and insights into the natural world. Also fond of cycling and running.

Alison Baker - Partnerships Co-ordinator, East Midlands Area, Environment Agency

Alison has been delivering environmental projects for over 25 years, since qualifying as a landscape architect at Sheffield University. She joined the Environment Agency 10 years ago, initially managing environmental risk on major flood risk management projects throughout the Northern and Anglian regions. For the last 5 years she has been working in the Environment Programme team and with a wide range of partner organisations to deliver water quality improvements required under the Water Framework Directive. Part of this role has involved strengthening the EA’s partnership work with Moors for the Future: in particular developing a greater understanding of the wider benefits that peatland restoration can deliver. Alison was seconded to the Moors for the Future team for 6 months, to support their successful MoorLIFE 2020 EU bid.

Amanda Anderson – Director, Moorland Association

Amanda Anderson is Moorland Association’s first director, appointed in January, 2014, after spending 14 years looking after the organisation’s communications through her own public relations company.

The directorship reflected ballooning interest in moorland and peatlands, through national and international wildlife and habitat designations, food security, climate change mitigation, flooding, water quality and supply.

Amanda helps steer MA’s ambitious aims of regenerating a further 250,000 acres of heather moorland, boosting populations of important birds, animals and plants. She sees communications as a pivotal part of her work, which includes liaising with Government and key national bodies.

With a master’s degree in aquaculture, honours’ degree in zoology, plus a further degree in post-16 education, her 15-year entrepreneurial career involved land-based marketing and communications, working with leading countryside agencies, companies and estates.

The public face of the organisation, Amanda regularly features in the media, promoting Moorland Association and its extensive work.

Anna Badcock - Cultural Heritage Team Manager, Peak District National Park Authority

Anna joined the Peak District National Park Authority as Cultural Heritage Team Manager in August 2017. She is a Landscape Archaeologist with 25 years’ experience of managing and delivering a huge range of heritage projects. She is interested in how we best manage the complexity of our living landscapes, and how we can share knowledge and draw upon local communities to help with the long-term protection, enhancement and enjoyment of these landscapes.

Ben Clutterbuck - Senior Lecturer and Researcher, Nottingham Trent University

Dr Ben Clutterbuck is a Senior Lecturer and Researcher at Nottingham Trent University. His area of expertise is in Geospatial Technology, and he explores how these tools and the data derived can be used for a range of applications from mapping bare peat to precision farming. He has over 12 years’ experience developing and delivering bespoke remote sensing solutions for mapping vegetation and management in upland areas, particularly in peatlands. He also has over 7 years’ experience of hydrological monitoring in upland and lowland peatlands with a focus on erosion/decomposition mechanisms, water quality, flow regimes and the impacts of restoration activities. Over the past few years he has been assessing the potential for more novel geospatial technologies, including Terrestrial Laser Scanning and UAVs, to enhance mapping and monitoring of vegetation, to assess peatland condition and to quantify erosion. He is currently working on solutions that enable data derived from multiple technologies to be combined and assist in the overall surveying of peatlands.

Carl Bedson - mammal biologist, Derbyshire Peak District

Carl started his wildlife career observing, tracking and photographing mountain hares on Kinder Scout, Bleaklow and Holme Moss.

He then studied a Master’s degree in conservation biology at Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU), writing his thesis on methods for estimating the abundance of antelopes and warthogs in Namibia, South West Africa.

Since 2012 each summer Carl has performed field research in North West Montana, USA, working with internationally renowned scientists and field biologists on grizzly bear, wolf and herbivore monitoring in remote montane forest habitats.

These experiences helped Carl formulate studies for the Peak District mountain hares: an isolated population of reintroduced hares that seem to thrive on the upland moors and are yet under pressure from human caused environmental changes.

Formal research on the mountain hares is now being conducted by Carl within a PhD programme at MMU, under the direction of Dr Huw Lloyd and various lagomorph experts.

Key objectives are to understand how many mountain hares there are; where they reside; and asking whether they are occupying allthe habitat available to them.

Sponsorship has been kindly provided by excellent charities and science organisations including People’s Trust for Endangered Species, Hare Preservation Trust, South-West Action for Hares, Penny Anderson Associates, Queen’s University Belfast and the British Mountaineering Council. Studies are ongoing throughout 2017 to 2020.

Claire Wordley - Communications and Engagement Officer, Conservation Evidence

Dr Claire Wordley works on increasing the use of the Conservation Evidence project by conservation practitioners. This involves communication about the benefits of evidence-based conservation, promotion of the Conservation Evidence database, and the provision of academic support for practitioners who want to test conservation interventions that can add to the Conservation Evidence project. Dr Wordley works closely with NGOs who want to increase their use of evidence in decision-making, and improve their testing and publication of conservation interventions.

Prior to this Dr Wordley worked for the RSPB, looking at the evidence base for management options for seabirds in marine protected areas.

Dr Wordley did her PhD at the University of Leeds under the supervision of Professor John Altringham. She worked in collaboration with the Nature Conservation Foundation, and focused on changes in bat species composition and functional diversity between different plantation types, forest fragments and riparian corridors in the Western Ghats of India. During this time, Dr Wordley did public outreach in the UK and India focused around bats, including talks in schools, newspaper series, poster exhibitions and science outreach events.

Dan Boys - Creative Director, Audio Trails

Dan holds a BSc Geography & Environmental Management (Hons) and is passionate about the outdoors and its potential to inspire learning and enjoyment. He produced the first MP3 audio guides in the country, established Audio Trails in 2006 and has since delivered over 100 wide-ranging heritage interpretation projects across the UK. Outside of work you’ll find Dan looking for an excuse to head off with the family in their campervan for a walking/mountain biking trip or visiting museums and heritage sites.

David Chapman – Chair, Moors for the Future Partnership

David has been Chair of the Moors for the Future Partnership since 2015.

He has been a Member of the Peak District National Park Authority for six and a half years, the last two years as Deputy Chair. His background has been an involvement with the local farming community and the National Park for many years.

He said: "I have a particularly strong connection with MFTF and the great work they are carrying out having been raised in Edale on my parent's farm. I have seen for many years with my own eyes the horrendous results of industrial pollution on the moorlands of my home.

“Because of this personal experience I take my position as Chair very seriously and with great compassion and enthusiasm, I know this attitude will be shared with everyone at BogFest.”

David Douglas - Principal Conservation Scientist, RSPB

Dr David Douglas works at the RSPB Centre for Conservation Science and leads RSPB’s upland research programme. This includes work to inform the recovery of declining birds such as curlew and whinchat, through diagnosing the causes of decline and testing solutions. His upland research also addresses wider land use issues including forestry, grazing, moorland burning and onshore wind farms, examining whether these impact on upland species, habitats and the wider environment.

Debbie Coldwell - Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield

Dr Debbie Coldwell comes from a background in ecology and has worked in the field of ecosystem services for the past ten years. She recently completed a PhD on cultural ecosystem services at the University of Sheffield in collaboration with the Dark Peak Nature Improvement Area (NIA) partnership. Debbie’s research focussed on her interests on the relationships between natural engagement and the delivery of wellbeing benefits and how this influences levels of conservation support. Together with the Dark Peak NIA partnership, she assessed the impacts of landscape-scale conservation management on the visitor experience including perceptions of change and psychological wellbeing. Debbie is a firm believer in the ecosystem approach and is looking forward to the next stage of her career where she hopes to help implement this approach and raise awareness of the multitude of benefits we get from healthy natural environments.

Estée Farrar –Access and Conservation Policy Officer, British Mountaineering Council

Estée works on access and conservation policy, managing relationships between the BMC, government and other organisations. After studying BSc(Hons) Geology and MSc Hydrogeology in England, Estée initially worked as an environmental consultant specialising on contaminated land remediation in the UK before moving to New Zealand for a number of years. Whilst working in New Zealand, Estée undertook a number of roles involved in conservation within local government and other conservation organisations: land management (working with dairy/sheep/beef farmers), restoration ecology and a number of years as a ranger involved in species restoration work, invasive species control and managing remote backcountry huts amongst other things. Estée is passionate about sustainability and the natural environment; environmental education; and the great outdoors - with a keen interest in conservation. She is particularly interested in upland conservation in terms of carbon sequestration, soil management, improving water quality and flood mitigation as well as important species restoration and preservation, whilst safeguarding and enhancing the outdoors for all to enjoy into the future.

Fred Worrall - Professor of Environmental Chemistry, University of Durham

Fred Worrall is Professor of Environmental Chemistry at the University of Durham. He has 21 years of peatland research experience that started from dealing with rising DOC concentrations from upland water resources. Seeking to explain why DOC concentration was rising it was natural to understand the wider picture and consider all carbon pathways (e.g. CH4 and CO2). The need to explore the wider picture of carbon processes meant that Professor Worrall published the first ever complete carbon budget of peatland in 2003 and then extended that to the first greenhouse gas budget in 2012. This research has led to a whole series of field experiments within upland catchments to see whether land management changes may significant alter and sometimes improve, the carbon and greenhouse gas fluxes from peatlands these have included: impact of drainage; drain-blocking; sheep-grazing, revegetation, managed burning and heather cutting. The management of upland peats represents a risk and an opportunity with respect to the regulating ecosystem services and as a result of our scientific understanding meant that it was possible to develop models of greenhouse gases sinks and stores at landscape scales (100’s km2) which could incorporate management strategies. This approach has been used to consider whether carbon offsetting could be used to pay for peatland restoration.

Commitment to the dissemination of research has resulted in over 160 papers published and the research has been conducted in collaboration of a large group of postgraduate students and research assistants. The bridging between the fundamental, process-led science to the applied has meant Dr Worrall’s research has been funded by a range of organisations including government research councils (NERC, EPSRC, BBSRC and ESRC); government departments (DEFRA); government bodies (Natural England, Environment Agency); the European Union (Horizon 2020 programme); charitable bodies (e.g. The National Trust); and industry (e.g. Northumbrian Water).

Gail Millin-Chalabi - GIS and Remote Sensing Officer for SEED/ EnviroSAR

Dr Gail Millin-Chalabi is the Director of EnviroSAR Ltd and was awarded the Copernicus Masters Sustainable Living Challenge 2016, funded by the Satellite Applications Catapult. The EnviroSAR team is based at The University of Manchester and is a University of Manchester Intellectual Propery (UMIP) start-up. Gail has over ten years’ experience in the geospatial industry starting her career in 2004, as a GIS Scientist for the United States Geological Survey Earthquake Hazards team in Menlo Park, California. Gail returned to the UK in 2005, to be Co-Investigator of a European Space Agency Project called ‘Monitoring the UK with ASAR and Meris’. During 2007-2013, she was the Geodata Services Development Officer for a national academic Spatial Data Infrastructure ‘Landmap’. In 2009, Gail began a PhD entitled ‘A Radar Multi-Temporal and Multi-Sensor Approach to Characterise Peat Moorland Burn Scars and Assess Burn Scar Persistence in the Landscape’ awarded in May 2016. From 2015-2016, she was Lecturer in Remote Sensing in the Geography department at The University of Manchester and in May 2016, she became the GIS and Remote Sensing Officer for the School of Environment, Education and Development at The University of Manchester.

Gareth Clay - Lecturer in Physical Geography, School of Environment, Education and development, The University of Manchester

Gareth is a Lecturer in Physical Geography at the University of Manchester with research interests in the impact of land management on carbon cycling processes. He has worked on the impact of fire, both prescribed burning and wildfires, on UK peatlands, including work in the Pennines and Peak District, and was a co-author on the IUCN UK Peatland Programme Review on the Impacts of Burning on Peatlands. Other research interests and projects include landscape restoration, organic matter cycling in mangroves, and urban physical geography. 

Hans Joosten - Professor of Peatland Studies and Palaeoecology, Institute of Botany and Landscape Ecology, University Greifswald

Hans Joosten (1955) studied biology and worked as university researcher and policy officer (State Forestry Service, Ministry of Agriculture) in the Netherlands. Since 1996 he leads the Department of Peatland Studies and Palaeoecology of Greifswald University (Germany), partner in the Greifswald Mire Centre. Key research topic of his group is paludiculture, on which he edited – together with Wendelin Wichtmann and Christian Schröder- the first handbook in 2016.

Since 2000 Hans Joosten is Secretary-General of the International Mire Conservation Group, for which he produced the books ‘Wise use of mires and peatlands’ (2002, with Donal Clarke of International Peat Society) and ‘Mires and peatlands of Europe’ (2017, with Franziska Tanneberger and Asbjørn Moen). Since 2009 he has been intensively involved in UNFCCC negotiations and IPCC guidance development, especially with respect to accounting for emissions from organic soils, and in FAO in advancing climate-responsible peatland management. In 2010 Hans Joosten received an Honorary Doctorate of the University of Batumi for his efforts in studying and protecting the mires of Colchis (Georgia). In 2013 he was awarded the European CULTURA Prize for Sustainable Land Use, and the Research Award Sustainability of the German Federal Government.

Helen Noble - Chief Executive, Pennine Prospects

Howard Davies – Chief Executive, National Association for Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty

Howard is passionate about the natural environment. Before he took up his current role in 2010 he was Director of Wildlife Trusts Wales.

His career started in farming, before moving into the private sector working in research and development. After a period of extensive travel, he came back to the UK to work for various practical conservation focused organisations in the third and public sector, before moving on to work within the Countryside Council for Wales’ Protected Landscapes team. He is Honorary Vice President of the North Wales Wildlife Trust, and an appointed Board Member of Natural Resources Wales.

Howard has a degree in Natural Sciences with Biology, a passionate interest in the relationship between people and place and actively promotes collaboration and consensus building. He is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.

Howard has been actively engaged in his local community for over twenty years and volunteers with many organisations, charities and businesses.

Ian Rotherham - Professor of Environmental Geography, Sheffield Hallam University

Ian Rotherham is Professor of Environmental Geography, Reader in Tourism and Environmental Change, and International Research Coordinator at Sheffield Hallam University. He is a Distinguished International Visiting Scholar, National Sun Yat Sen University, Taiwan. He has over thirty years’ experience in ecology, tourism, planning, and economics research and as a practitioner in countryside management and regional development. He is chair of the British Ecological Society’s Peatlands Research Special Interest Group and of the UK & Ireland branch of the European Society for Environmental History. He has written extensively on peatlands and fenlands and is an authority on their ecological and cultural histories, and on their restoration. Ian has a particular interest in the history and archaeology of peat and peatlands, and on their uses and exploitation. He runs a project called the 'Healing Harvest' to discover the importance of sphagnum moss for wartime surgery and medical usage.

James Pearce-Higgins – Director of Science, British Trust for Ornithology

Dr James Pearce-Higgins has been Director of Science at the British Trust for Ornithology since July 2014. He is a member of the senior management team, and responsible for providing strategic leadership of the science of the organisation, which encompasses both monitoring and research. James also leads BTO's climate change research, which involves documenting the impacts of climate change on UK biodiversity, undertaking projections of the likely future impact of climate change on species' distributions and abundance, and informing the development of climate change adaptation. From 2010-2014 he led the Population Ecology and Modelling team and was responsible for the BBS research programme, which not only informed potential improvements and additions to the BBS survey, but developed new modelling techniques to understand the drivers of population change, and to improve predictions of future abundance. Prior to this, James worked for 11 years in Scotland for RSPB, leading a wide-range of upland research projects. He was awarded a PhD from the University of Manchester in 2000 on The Ecology of Golden Plovers in the Peak District. James has published over 100 peer-reviewed scientific papers, and co-authored Birds and Climate Change. Impacts and Conservation Responses, published by CUP in 2014.

Jenny Williamson - Peatland Biogeochemist, Centre for Ecology & Hydrology, Natural Environment Research Council

Jenny is a wetland scientist specialising in the biogeochemical functioning of peatlands, with particular interest in mapping the impacts of land management. She has recently worked on projects evaluating the effectiveness of drainage ditch blocking in blanket peatlands and modelling greenhouse gas fluxes from lowland peat soils including agricultural peatland, restored fen sites and semi-natural fens. She is currently managing a DEFRA funded project evaluating the effectiveness of the use of Sentinel satellite imagery for peatland condition monitoring.

John Walker - gardening and environment writer, book author and blogger

John Walker has tried and tested more peat-free composts in his garden and greenhouse than he cares to think about. He also makes his own ultra-local sowing and potting mixes. John is especially interested in highlighting the ongoing failure of our gardening industry and media to convey the benefits to the natural world of switching to peat-free gardening, and why they continue to let gardeners, especially non-gardeners, down.

An award-winning gardening and environmental writer and author, John has 40 years’ experience in practical gardening, teaching and the garden media. He grew up in the countryside, caught the gardening bug while still at school, and then studied at the Birmingham Botanical Gardens, Cambridge University Botanic Garden, and at the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew, England, where he was awarded the Kew Diploma in Horticulture. He is also a qualified horticultural teacher. John was features/deputy editor of Garden Answers magazine, contributing editor of Kitchen Garden magazine, and technical editor of The Organic Way.

Constantly on the lookout for ways in which gardening can become more ecologically responsible and earth-friendly, John is slowly eking out a new climate-friendly garden from a once bracken-riddled hillside at his home in Snowdonia. Find John and his work at www.earthfriendlygardener.net

John Scott – Director of Conservation and Planning, Peak District National Park Authority

John Scott is the Director of Conservation and Planning for the Peak District National Park Authority and is responsible for the Services which deliver the National Park Authority’s statutory purpose of conserving the special qualities of the National Park and its landscape. These include the Landscape and Conservation, Programme and partnership delivery, Policy and Communities, and Development Management. John has worked for the Authority since 2012, but was also a Planning Officer with the Authority from 1986 to 2002. He has lived in Bakewell for the last 30 years.

Jon Stewart - Peak District General Manager, National Trust

Jon’s professional journey began with a degree in Ecology. He worked as a Conservation Officer for the Nature Conservancy Council in Scotland, Scottish Natural Heritage and English Nature in Cornwall before moving to the Peak District. Specialising in team, upland and Sites of Special Scientific Interest management he led a wide range of programmes for English Nature and subsequently Natural England in the Peak District and East Midlands. In 2011 he became General Manager for the National Trust in the Peak District responsible for the care of over 12% of the National Park’s varied and special landscapes with responsibility for delivery of the Trust's key aims of conservation and access/enjoyment. This work has included leading on the development and delivery of the High Peak Moors Vision.

Lydia Burgess Gamble – Principal Scientist, Environment Agency

Dr Lydia Burgess Gamble started working in the water industry 18 years ago when she undertook a PhD investigating River Restoration project appraisal and monitoring procedures at Queen Mary College, London. She has now been at the Environment Agency for over 14 years in a wide range of Flood Risk Management roles but always with an interest in managing flood risk whilst improving the environment for people and wildlife. For the last 5 years she has been working in a Flood Risk Research team as a Principal Scientist leading projects on Working with Natural Processes to reduce flood risk. In this role she has developed a Research framework which defines high priority areas of research in this field, and she has also project managed a suite of projects to develop the Evidence Base for Natural Flood Management. She has also worked with NERC to establish the recent Natural Flood Management Research call.

Mark Owen - Lead Conservation and Land Management Advisor, Natural England

Mark Reed - Professor of Socio-Technical Innovation, Newcastle University

Mark Outhwaite - LIFE+ Project Assistant Manager, Natural England

Mark has been the Assistant Manager for the Restoring the Humberhead Peatlands LIFE+ Project since 2014 and is based at the Humberhead Peatlands National Nature Reserve.

He is responsible for the Evapotranspiration reduction (scrub clearance) and control of rhododendron re-growth actions for the projects. Managing the LIFE+ Estate and responsible for procuring the services of contractors to deliver scrub clearance outcomes for the project. Mark has been involved in communications and engagement outcomes, delivering presentations to local schools, colleges and community groups.

Mark graduated from Bishop Burton College with a BSc (Hons) in Countryside Management in 1999. Following his graduation Mark established Countryside Services in 1999, a contracting service undertaking practical land management contracts for forestry companies, conservation organisations and private land owners throughout North and East Yorkshire. He specialised in the establishment and maintenance of woodlands and weed control including the control of invasive species.

While managing Countryside Services Mark became a part-time tutor at Askham Bryan College (York) in 2005 initially teaching Estate Skills on the National Diploma in Forestry and Arboriculture. He progressed to become the Guidance Officer and Assessor on the Work-based learning apprenticeship for Forestry and Arboriculture teaching and assessing units in tree establishment and protection, health and safety and pollution management. Mark has also been an independent land based trainer for pesticides and brushcutter/trimmer.

Martin Evans - Professor of Geomorphology, University of Manchester

Martin Evans is Professor of geomorphology in the department of Geography, University of Manchester. He has been working on the impacts of erosion and restoration on UK upland peatlands for almost 20 years with a particular focus on carbon cycling and hydrology. He was an expert panel member on the IUCN commission of enquiry into peatlands and is currently a Leverhulme Fellow working on geomorphological understanding of terrestrial carbon cycling.

Mat Roberts - Group Director of Sustainability Strategy, Interserve

Mat Roberts is Interserve PLC Group Director of Sustainability Strategy. He leads on the development of the Interserve SustainAbilities Plan with a specific focus on the social and natural capital.

Before joining Interserve was Head of Sustainability at Landmarc Support Services, an Interserve joint venture. Interserve is one of the world’s foremost support services and construction companies.

Mat is an advisor to the EU Business @ Biodiversity Platform, a Trustee of The Princes Countryside Fund, a Non-Executive Director of Cynnal Cymru Sustain Wales and the National Association of AONBs and a fellow of the RSA. When not working or being a father and husband he enjoys cycling, sailing and hill walking.

Nick Mott - Senior Wetlands Ecologist, Staffordshire Wildlife Trust

Nigel Taylor - Postdoctoral Researcher, Tour du Valat

Dr Nigel Taylor is currently working on the Conservation Evidence project, aiming to summarise evidence for the effectiveness of conservation interventions for wetland vegetation. Eventually, Dr Taylor’s summaries will cover salt marshes, freshwater marshes, swamps, rivers and lakes as well as peatlands (bogs, fens and peat swamps). Previously, Dr Taylor completed his PhD at the University of Leeds, working on the impacts of aquatic invasive species under the supervision of Dr Alison Dunn.

Dr Taylor says: “I think it is crucial that scientific evidence is easily accessible, so it can be used to inform conservation decisions.”

Penny Anderson - Director, Penny Anderson Associates

Penny developed her ecological consultancy (based in Buxton) from 1972. She mostly retired in 2013. The consultancy is one of the longest established of its kind in the country, incorporating ecologists, earth scientists, hydrologists and GIS specialists. Penny’s philosophy has always been to integrate nature conservation wherever possible. She has undertaken many development projects, helped mastermind several Nature Conservation Strategies, undertaken research and prepared various guidance for Natural England or its predecessors.

Penny has a specialist interest and expertise in habitat creation, management and restoration. From 1979, she developed methods for assessing and restoring moorland and has, with colleagues, prepared restoration and management plans for much upland habitat in England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland. She contributed to the IUCN Peatland Inquiry. Her expertise includes creating and restoring flower-rich grasslands. She co-authored ‘Habitat Creation and Repair’ (1998, OUP) and the ‘Wildflowers and Other Plants of the Peak District’ 1981 (Moorland Publishing). She has lived in or near the Peak District for over 40 years.

She now volunteers in the Peak District for the National Trust and Natural England, as well as for her professional organisation, CIEEM. She is a Peak District National Park Authority and Local Nature Partnership member. Penny, has now collected 40 years of botanical data in a local Derbyshire Wildlife Trust reserve – a very valuable long-term dataset to be analysed when she finds time!

Pippa Chapman - Professor of biogeochemistry, School of Geography, University Leeds

Pippa Chapman is Professor of biogeochemistry at the School of Geography, University Leeds. Her research focuses on improving our understanding of how nutrients are transported from soils to surface waters and the atmosphere. She is interested in the impacts of land management, atmospheric deposition and climate change on carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus cycling in soils. Much of her research has been carried out in the uplands of the UK; assessing the impact of peatland restoration and management on water quality in relation to the impacts of atmospheric deposition.

Rhodri Thomas - Natural Environment Team Manager, Peak District National Park Authority

Rhodri graduated from the University of Leeds with a Zoology degree whilst the dinosaurs were still roaming the earth, and nearly became part of a peat bog when re-notifying SSSIs for the Nature Conservancy Council in Norfolk in 1986. He has also worked for The Wildlife Trusts on the Gwent Levels and still enjoys hearing drumming Snipe at dawn on rare occasions. For the last 30 years he has had the privilege of working for the Peak District National Park Authority as an Ecologist and, more latterly, managing the Authority’s Natural Environment & Rural Economy Team (which means ecology, landscape and farm liaison). His favourite plant is Moonwort (though he also likes Hawkweeds a lot) and he loves craneflies (but then doesn’t everyone).

Richard Lindsay - Head of the Environmental and Conservation Research, Sustainability Research Institute, University of East London

Richard Lindsay is Head of the Environmental and Conservation Research in the Sustainability Research Institute (SRI) at the University of East London (UEL). For almost 20 years prior to joining UEL he was Senior Peatland Specialist in the Nature Conservancy Council and subsequently in Scottish Natural Heritage. During this time he was involved in a number of high-profile conservation cases, including battle for the Flow Country – a battle described the recently-published book celebrating Derek Ratcliffe’s life. On leaving SNH in 1996, Richard joined the University of East London to re-design their conservation degrees and taught on these for 12 years before joining the Sustainability Research Institute. For 16 years he was also Chairman of the International Mire Conservation Group (IMCG) which is the international network of peatland specialists who advise their respective governments about peatland conservation issues. He was lead author for the UK chapter in the recently-published magnum opus “Mires and Peatlands of Europe” and has contributed key peatland entries to the new Springer wetland encyclopaedia “The Wetland Book”. He continues to be involved in peatland conservation issues around the world and is currently writing the peatland section for the forthcoming underpinning science report of the Convention on Biological Diversity.

Rosie Lonnon – Founder, Edibles

Rosie and her partner Steve run ‘Edibles’ a permaculture smallholding at Paddock Farm, Slaithwaite in the South Pennines. Rosie’s interest in home and allotment gardening broadened after taking the Permaculture Design Certificate in 2010, moving to Paddock Farm and setting up Edibles. Edibles manages a 7-acre site with 3 broad aims:

  • To grow year-round food for sale locally (salads and edibles flowers our speciality);
  • To support people in growing food by running courses, hosting events, teaching in the local High School, offering volunteering opportunities and visits
  • To provide a unique venue in our Cowshed for music and cultural events, meetings, conferences and celebrations.

The site comprises allotment style veg beds, greenhouses, 2 polytunnels, hen tractor, hay meadows, bee hives, forest garden, beautiful cowshed venue and training space with cob oven. Further information: www.edibles.org.uk

Rosmarie Katrin Neumann - Mediator and Interdisciplinary Researcher, Founder of Impact Dialog

Rosi has more than 10 years of interdisciplinary expertise, split between research and practice. Trained originally as a landscape ecologist in Germany, Iceland and New Zealand, she worked with a wide range of stakeholders around the world, including NGOs, practitioners, policy-makers, law enforcement and media. During her time as a professional knowledge broker with the German science-policy interface for biodiversity in Leipzig, at the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental research, she liaised between national, European and international policies and policy makers, and collaborated with a range of other international science-policy interfaces within the EU and internationally. The Science paper Rosi co-authored about the failures of science-policy dialogue in relation to EU agricultural policy has still an ongoing impact. Since 2016, she is a trained mediator. Besides her ongoing research at Newcastle University on science-policy dialogue Rosi runs her own knowledge brokerage company Impact Dialog in Germany. Please find out more about Rosi and her activities on Twitter: @RosmarieKatrin

Roxane Andersen - Senior Research Fellow, Environmental Research Institute, University of the Highlands and Islands

Dr Roxane Andersen is a Senior Research Fellow at the Environmental Research Institute, part of the University of the Highlands and Islands, where she leads the ‘Carbon, Water, Climate’ theme. She coordinates the Flow Country Research Hub, a UK network of researchers and stakeholders involved in peatland research in the north of Scotland. Roxane also sits on Scotland’s National Peatland Research and Monitoring Group and is the lead expert for ‘Peatland Restoration’ for the International Peatland Society. Her research largely focusses on the impact of disturbance and restoration on peatland biogeochemical processes and biodiversity (micro-organisms, plants, invertebrates). She currently supervises nine PhD students.

Sarah Fowler - Chief Executive of the Peak District National Park Authority

Throughout her career, Sarah has worked to deliver positive change for people and the environment - and this is especially true in her current role.

She says: “Every connection people have with the Peak District is an opportunity to deepen our collective understanding of what it means to care for, and enjoy, Britain’s original National Park.”

Sarah’s career has taken her to cities and deeply rural areas. She’s managed major environmental incidents and worked in national and international arenas, informing and advising governments.
She has previously worked in the Environment Agency, has led a sustainable development charity in Peterborough and has worked at English Nature (Natural England's predecessor). She began her career at the Wiltshire Wildlife Trust and has also worked for the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds.

Sarah holds an MSc in Aquatic Resource Management and is currently a board member of Derbyshire Wildlife Trust and of Derbyshire Sport.

Outside her formal roles, she has worked on farms, promoted local food and culture and always seeks opportunities to get outdoors with family and friends. You might see her next fell running in the Peak District National Park. Sarah’s goal in life is simple: to leave the places she connects with in a better shape and the people she connects with to feel more fulfilled by time spent in beautiful landscapes.

Sarah Ross - Associate Director, Penny Anderson Associates

Sarah has worked at Penny Anderson Associates (PAA) for 16 years and has been involved in the United Utilities’ Sustainable Catchment Management Project (SCaMP) Monitoring since its inception in 2005. During this time, alongside the work for SCaMP, Sarah has had the privilege of surveying and providing advice on the restoration and monitoring of many peatland sites across the UK. Prior to joining PAA, Sarah undertook habitat monitoring of upland agri-environment schemes on a Defra-funded project and has worked at various times for the Statutory Nature Conservation Organisations, again on peatland matters. She has a degree in Ecology (Sheffield) and a PhD in Wetland Ecology (Stirling) and an avid interest in all things furry, especially bats.

Simon Caporn - Professor in Ecology and Environment, Manchester Metropolitan University

Simon Caporn is a Professor in Ecology and Environment at Manchester Metropolitan University. Since the 1980s the main focus of his research and teaching has been on the plant ecology of bogs and heathlands, with particular interests in the impacts of air pollution and climate change. For the past 28 years he and colleagues have ran a long term nitrogen addition experiment on heathland in Wales which has generated better understanding of the impacts of nitrogen pollution on this habitat and contributed to development of policy on critical loads of nitrogen pollution. In other Welsh research, he and colleagues are investigating the effects of climate change and seal level rise on raised bog vegetation and peatland carbon balance. In recent years, Simon has become closely involved with restoration of peatlands in the UK with particular interests in the recovery and re-introduction of Sphagnum to damaged blanket bogs in the Peak District and also to the extensive areas of cut-over peatlands in north-west England. He has been involved with the British Ecological Society (BES) for many years and is one of the founding members of the BES Peatland Research group.

Simon Stokes - Environment Programme Project Manager Yorkshire Area, Environment Agency

Simon has been working at the Environment Agency for three years after completing their River and Coastal Engineering study program. He joined the Calderdale Flood and Coastal Risk Management team following the Boxing Day 2015 floods with the remit to lead on the Natural Flood Management element of the Calderdale Flood Action Plan.

Since then he has been involved with a number of NFM projects working with community led organisations across the Calder Valley and he has recently be appointed as the EA Project Manager for the Yorkshire NFM Landscape projects which have been funded through the National FCRM NFM Program allocation announced after the Autumn statement.

Steve Trotter - Director, Wildlife Trusts England

Susan Page - Professor of Physical Geography, University of Leicester

Professor Susan Page studied at the University of Nottingham for a BSc in Biological Sciences followed by a PhD on the vegetation and hydrochemistry of the spring and flush communities of the Peak District National Park. She currently holds a personal chair in the School of Geography, Geology and the Environment at the University of Leicester. For the last 20 years, Professor Page’s research has focused on the ecology and carbon dynamics of tropical peatlands, with a main focus in Southeast Asia. When Professor Page commenced her research studies, most tropical peatlands were still in a pristine, forested condition, but over the last two decades she has seen significant changes in land use, involving loss of peat swamp forest, drainage and conversion to agriculture as well as extensive damage by wildfires. These events have provided her with a rapidly changing backdrop for her research that, in turn, has become more focused on understanding the impacts of land use change and fire on peatland ecosystems and the opportunities for mitigation of carbon loss and greenhouse gas emissions. She has authored more than 100 journal papers, books, book chapters and technical reports, and has supervised more than 20 PhD students. She is the recipient of the Busk Medal 2013 awarded by the Royal Geographical Society-Institute of British Geographers and the 2015 Theodore Sperry Award of the Society for Ecological Restoration; she was also a lead author for the 2013 IPCC guidance on greenhouse gas emissions from organic soils.

Tim Allott – Professor of Physical Geography, University of Manchester

Tim Allott is Professor of Physical Geography and Head of the School of Environment, Education and Development at the University of Manchester. He has over 25 years research experience working on the dynamics of peatland and freshwater systems in the UK and Europe, recently co-editing two major volumes on peatlands and their restoration. Tim has worked with the Moors for the Future Partnership since their inception, involving various projects on peat hydrology as well as science co-ordination for the major EA/DEFRA ‘Making Space for Water’ project on peat restoration and natural flood management. He was recently appointed lead for the IUCN Peatland Programme’s ‘Peatland Catchment’ theme within the 2017-18 Commission of Inquiry on Peatlands. Tim lives in Glossop and regularly stalks the Dark Peak bogs… for both business and pleasure.

Tim Thom – Programme Manager, Yorkshire Peat Partnership

Tim Thom is the Programme Manager for the Yorkshire Peat Partnership which he established in 2008. The Yorkshire Peat Partnership has overseen over £15million of blanket bog restoration work across over 27,000ha of North Yorkshire’s estimated 60-70,000ha of upland peatland.  The partnership is developing new techniques for re-vegetating peatland with Sphagnum and innovative monitoring methods using UAV and remote sensing technologies. More recently Tim worked with the North Pennines AONB, Forest of Bowland AONB to submit a successful bid to the EU LIFE fund and is now one of the main partners in the EU-LIFE, EA, Yorkshire Water, Northumbrian Water and United Utilities funded Pennine PeatLIFE project. This project extends the peatland restoration work of the partnership but will also trial the rollout of the Peatland Code and novel methods for monitoring it over the next 5 years. With an academic background Tim is also working in partnership with researchers from iCASP, the University of York and the University of Manchester to develop key research projects including YPP’s own, Yorkshire Water funded, research into Sphagnum growth and its impact on ecosystem services of blanket bog.


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