Steve Ridgway CBE


Steve Ridgway took up his post as BTA (VisitBritain/VisitEngland) Chairman on 1 April 2017. He 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.

About the Chairman's office

The Chairman works with VisitBritain's private and public sector partners in England, Scotland and Wales to aid us in strengthening the marketing of Britain as a tourist destination overseas. 

Steve's biography

Steve became Chairman of BTA in April 2017, after having sat on the BTA Board since 2013, he is Non-Executive Chairman of StartJG, an international brand agency, following 13 years as Chief Executive of Virgin Atlantic Airways.

He began his business career at Sir James Goldsmith's Cavenham Foods and later joined the Toleman Group, as Business Development Manager (1979-81). When the company bought Cougar Marine (1981-85) he became General Manager based in Miami. On return to the UK he became the Project Head and Chief Pilot of the two 'Virgin Atlantic Challengers', the boat in which he re-captured the fastest crossing of the North Atlantic 1986.

He remained close friends with Richard Branson and formally joined Virgin Atlantic as Managing Director of Virgin Freeway. His career with Virgin progressed rapidly becoming Managing Director of Virgin Atlantic Airways in 1998 and Chief Executive from 2001-2013. He is currently Chairman of Scandlines Ferries in Denmark.

Other Team Members

BTA Board member Robin Frewer

Robin Frewer

Board member

Portrait of Denis Wormwell

Denis Wormwell

Chair of VisitEngland

BTA Board member Carol Hui

Carol Hui

Board member

Portrait of Katy Best

Katy Best


BTA Board member Karin Sheppard

Karin Sheppard

Board member

Portrait of Lord Thurso

Lord John Thurso

Chair of VisitScotland

Portrait of Ian Edwards

Ian Edwards

Wales Representative

BTA Board member Peter Gowers

Peter Gowers

Board member