Board and senior team

BTA board

The BTA board decides our overall direction, working within a framework agreed with our sponsoring Government department, the Department for Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS). Below are the details of board members as at 11 October 2016.

Christopher Rodrigues CBE
Christopher Rodrigues CBE
Chairman
Christopher Rodrigues CBE, provides strategic leadership to our work to boost tourism to and within Britain, leading the delivery of a new era of greater coherence and partnership for the visitor economy. Christopher became Chairman of VisitBritain in January 2007. He is also Chairman of the British Council, Openwork LLP and The Almeida Theatre. He is on the Council, and a Trustee, of the National Trust and is an Executive Committee member of the World Travel and Tourism Council. In August 2013 he became the Chairman of the British Bobsleigh & Skeleton Association. In 2013 he was given an Honorary Doctorate at the University of Surrey in recognition of his work in the tourism industry.
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Angela Bray
Angela Bray
Board member
Angela Bray was the Conservative Member of Parliament for Ealing Central and Acton (2010-2015), and spent two years as Parliamentary Private Secretary to Francis Maude, the Minister for the Cabinet Office. She also served on the Transport and Culture, Media and Sport Select Committees. She was previously a Member of the London Assembly (2000-08), and her early career was in journalism, broadcasting and public affairs.
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Penelope, Viscountess Cobham CBE
Penelope, Viscountess Cobham CBE
Board member
Lady Cobham became Chairman of VisitEngland in April 2009. She is: a board member of the Historic Houses Association and Birmingham Museums Trust; Chairman of the Museum Prize Trust (which runs the Art Fund Prize for museums and galleries) and sits on the Council of the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust. She was awarded a CBE in 2014 for her long service to English tourism.
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John Lindquist
John Lindquist
Board member
John Lindquist is a strategy consultant and adviser with extensive international experience in travel and tourism. He is a Senior Adviser at The Boston Consulting Group, specialising in international tourism development, and combines this with his role as a Non-Executive Director at Kuoni Group, the Zurich based global travel services company. He was first appointed as a Board Member of VisitBritain in 2010.
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Margaret Llewellyn OBE
Margaret Llewellyn OBE
Board member
Margaret Llewellyn OBE is a former Managing Director of Dragon Shipping Line with extensive knowledge of shipping, ports and the cruise industry. She is a Non-Executive Director of both Cardiff International Airport and the Ports of Jersey, and a Board Member of Haven Enterprise Zone, Deputy Chairman of Port of Dover and a Past Vice Chair of Welsh Development Agency. She was awarded an OBE for services to the Economic Development of Wales.
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Ian McCaig
Ian McCaig
Board member
Ian McCaig is Chief Executive at First Utility, the largest independent energy retailer in the UK. Previously he was Chief Operating Officer and Chief Executive at lastminute.com where he led the successful integration of lastminute with Travelocity Europe and steered the company through its most successful years. He joined the board of VisitBritain formally in February 2014.
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Steve Ridgway CBE
Steve Ridgway CBE
Board member
Steve Ridgway CBE was appointed to the VisitBritain board in 2013. He is currently Chairman of Scandlines Ferries in Denmark and Non-Executive Chairman of StartJG, an international brand agency. He began his business career at Sir James Goldsmith's Cavenham Foods, and held numerous positions before becoming Managing Director of Virgin Atlantic Airways in 1998 and Chief Executive from 2001-2013.
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Lord John Thurso
Lord John Thurso
Board member
Lord Thurso is Chair of VisitScotland and has significant industry experience having led a number of hospitality businesses: including Blakeney Hotels of Cliveden, which became the UK’s highest rated hotel under his leadership. He served as a non-executive on a number of public company boards including The Savoy PLC, Millenium and Copthorne PLC and sat in the House of Lords between 1995 and 1999. He was MP for Caithness, Sutherland & Easter Ross from 2001-05.
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Katy Best
Katy Best
Observer
Katy Best was appointed as an Observer to the VisitBritain board in 2014. She is the Commercial and Marketing Director at Belfast City Airport and is responsible for all revenue streams, marketing, communications and tourism related activity at the Airport. She also serves as a Non-Executive Director of the Northern Ireland Tourist Board, The MAC, Tall Ships 2015 Ltd and is a Council member of NI Connections.
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Lise-Anne Boissiere
Lise-Anne Boissiere
Observer
Lise-Anne Boissiere graduated from Oxford in 2002 and spent a year working for Holyrood magazine before moving to London to join the civil service, starting in the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister. She has since worked on a range of issues across Whitehall, from electoral legislation to equality policy, before being appointed Head of Tourism, Heritage and Cultural Diplomacy in March 2014.
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Kevin Murphy OBE
Kevin Murphy
Observer
Kevin Murphy OBE is a London & Partners board member and Chairman of ExCeL London, the international exhibition and convention centre. He has served twice as Chairman of the AEO (Association of Exhibition Organisers) and recently stepped down as Chairman of the AEV (Association of Event Venues). In 2015 he was awarded an OBE for his services to Business Tourism.
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VisitEngland advisory board

The VisitEngland Advisory Board advises on the development and implementation of an 'England Action Plan.' Below are the details of board members as at 11 October 2016.

Penelope, Viscountess Cobham CBE
Penelope, Viscountess Cobham CBE
Chairman
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Lady Cobham became Chairman of VisitEngland and subsequently the VisitEngland Advisory Board in April 2009, prior to which she was deputy Chairman of VisitBritain. Lady Cobham is a board member of the Historic Houses Association and Birmingham Museums Trust, and is Chairman of the Museum Prize Trust which has been responsible for running the UK’s largest arts prize, the Art Fund Prize for museums and galleries. She sits on the Council of the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust. She was awarded a CBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List 2014 for her long service to English tourism.
Suzanne Bond
Suzanne Bond
Board member
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Suzanne Bond is the Chief Executive of Cornwall Development Company and sits on our board in an ex-officio capacity. She has a 25 year track record in economic development, and has held senior executive positions with and within European, national, regional and sub regional organisations. She has been an advocate and negotiator for Cornwall at EU, national and regional level for over 20 years.
Nigel Halkes
Nigel Halkes
Board member
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Nigel Halkes has during a 36 year career in Ernst and Young held a variety of senior roles in the firm, advising major clients in tourism, hospitality and other sectors. As well as the VisitEngland Advisory Board, Nigel’s non-executive portfolio include the Victoria & Albert Museum, the Polka Theatre in Wimbledon and Rowdeford School in Devizes.
John Hoy
John Hoy
Board member
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John Hoy is the Chief Executive of the Blenheim Estate in Oxfordshire, and has previously held senior positions at the National Museum of Science & Industry and Madame Tussaud’s in London. He is also a Member of the Oxfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership’s Forum, and a Member of the Tourism & Commercial Development Committee at the Historic Houses Association.
Sarah Stewart
Sarah Stewart
Board member
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Sarah Stewart is Chief Executive of NewcastleGateshead Initiative. A former Deputy Chair of both the Port of Tyne and the International Centre for Life, she is Chair of the Beamish Development Trust, a non-executive Board Member of Beamish Museum Ltd and a non-executive director of the Tyneside Economic Development Company. She holds no other public appointments.
Denis Wormwell
Denis Wormwell
Board member
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Denis Wormwell is Chief Executive of Shearings Group, a private equity backed tour operator and hotel business. He has vast amount of travel, leisure and transport experience having held several Director roles and sitting on boards for Confederation of Passenger Transport (CPT), ABTA and Federation of Tour Operators (FTO).

Senior team

Our directors each lead a division and report in to the CEO. Below are details of our senior team as at 11 October 2016.

Sally Balcombe
Sally Balcombe
Chief Executive
Sally Balcombe is responsible for the day-to-day running of VisitBritain/VisitEngland, in London and overseas, developing and leading strategies for the marketing of Britain internationally and working in close partnership with all our stakeholders. Alongside the Chairman, she works to ensure that overseas tourism is high on the political and economic agenda.
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Carol Dray
Carol Dray
Commercial Director
Carol leads on retail product development, maximising the effectiveness of our online shop, product development and distribution across Britain and England as well as shaping our Britain and England commercial partnerships.
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Hazel Cunningham
Hazel Cunningham
Business Services Director
Hazel Cunningham leads our Business Services division, providing a shared service for both VisitBritain and VisitEngland in HR, IT, finance and facilities management.
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Robin Johnson
Robin Johnson
Interim Marketing Director
Robin leads the marketing division, shaping our marketing strategy and leading the delivery of our campaigns to ensure that we are meeting our objectives and those of our partners. In addition, digital and social media, PR, brand and photographic management are key delivery areas.
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Sumathi Ramanathan
Sumathi Ramanathan
Director Asia Pacific, Mid East & Africa (APMEA)
Sumathi Ramanathan leads our Asia Pacific, Mid East and Africa division responsible for leveraging partnerships (especially carriers) to open up distribution and promotion opportunities across the Asian markets, addressing barriers to travel and building compelling content targeting core drivers for travel through traditional and digital channels.
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Andrew Stokes
Andrew Stokes
Interim England Director
Andrew leads on the development and delivery of the £40 million ‘Discover England Fund’ to ensure ‘bookable’ English regional product is being created for international markets that will also benefit domestic tourism. He is responsible for developing an England Action Plan that focuses on the Discover England Fund and on business visits and events tourism.
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Patricia Yates
Patricia Yates
Director Strategy & Communications
Patricia Yates leads our strategy and communications division which delivers on our statutory duty to advise Government on tourism matters that impact on England’s tourism as well as those that affect Britain’s global competitiveness; provides research and insights on England and inbound tourism to Britain, strategic partnership engagement, communication with our stakeholders, media and staff; and leads the industry in time of crisis.
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