Board of Trustees & Honorary Officers

You can contact Trustees via our main office: Suffolk Wildlife Trust, Brooke House, Ashbocking, Ipswich IP6 9JY

Download our governance documents

Ian Brown (Chairman)
Ian retired from the Petroleum Industry after a lifetime career as an executive director. He has specific expertise in finance, health and safety, transportation, legal and commercial activities. He has been a member of SWT since 1998, after the Trust provided invaluable advice about the colony of great crested newts in his garden pond. He is a regular speaker on the Trust’s activities to businesses, voluntary organisations, and local groups. Ian chaired the Trust’s health and safety committee until 2014. In addition to his dedication to Suffolk’s environment, he has a keen interest in education. He has been a governor at various Suffolk and Essex senior schools over the past 15 years.

Nigel Farthing

Nigel Farthing (Vice Chairman)
Nigel is a solicitor and partner at Birketts. He specialises in property law and has a particular interest in countryside issues including rights of way and public access to land. He is currently a trustee of two charitable trusts and a former non-executive director of Ipswich Hospital NHS Trust. He was a trustee at Suffolk Wildlife Trust for six years before standing down in 2012. He has a lifelong interest in natural history and conservation and has for many years been a member of Suffolk Naturalists Society, Suffolk Ornithologists Group and the RSPB.


Robin Drayton (Hon Treasurer)
Robin has farmed in Whepstead for 40 years. In 1986 he joined the Lands Improvement Company, a rural property investment and farming company, as their accountant. As well as its core holdings of agricultural land, it diversified into the shipping business building a river wharf at Sutton Bridge on the river Nene, into the leisure business, starting a theme park in Scotland among other ventures. He has been a member of the Trust for many years and his particular interest is ancient woodland and the books of Dr Oliver Rackham who knows the Whepstead woods well. He also keeps an eye on Lackford Lakes reserve when playing golf at Flempton!


James Robinson (Hon. Secretary)
James is a retired managing director who worked within three different industrial organisations gaining broad experience in finance, strategy, structure, sales and marketing.  He is a regular volunteer at Lackford Lakes.


Philippa Goodwin
Pip has a Master’s degree in environmental law from the University of London and previously had a career as an environmental and legal consultant working on the environmental assessment of projects such as the Channel Tunnel Rail Link and integrated pollution control for major industrial companies. She has lived in rural Suffolk for most of her life and is passionate about wildlife and its conservation. Currently she works as a committed conservation volunteer, complementing her work on environmental policy and law at the RSPB with practical conservation activities in the field for Suffolk Wildlife Trust and Plantlife. She has also worked on the production of the European Red List of Vascular Plants 2011 at the IUCN in Cambridge.

James Alexander
James is an experienced entrepreneur and business advisor. He was a co-founder of Zopa, Europe’s largest P2P lender, and former Strategy Director at Egg. Currently James is a Director of and an advisor to a number of innovative finance payers. He advises a number of social ventures and charities including the RSPB and Suffolk Wildlife Trust and is Chair of Gen Community Ventures. James has also worked as a growth strategy consultant where his clients have included Tesco, Eurostar, Save the Children, The Guardian, M&S and Just Giving. James holds an MBA from INSEAD AND was part of a 3-person team who re-discovered three species of bird formerly considered to be extinct.

Rachel Eburne
Rachel has over 20 years’ experience in management, business development and marketing. While on the board of a marketing agency she took a sabbatical to take a Masters in Environment, Politics and Globalisation at King’s College, London. Following this she headed up the Women’s Environmental Network and has served as trustee for several organisations including The Environment Council, CPRE (London) and the East of England Apples & Orchards Project.
Brought up in Suffolk, Rachel spent some years as a governor of her local village primary school. She is currently an elected councillor for Mid Suffolk District Council and in this role also serves as a substitute on the national Environment, Economy, Housing and Transport Board for the Local Government Association.


Peter Holborn
Now retired, Peter worked for Suffolk County Council for 30 years in the field of environmental conservation and during that time built up considerable knowledge of the ecology of Suffolk, wildlife conservation priorities and initiatives. He has a strong academic and practical background in wildlife and landscape conservation, and is a passionate defender of the rural character and wildlife of the county. A past vice chairman of Suffolk Wildlife Trust, and former chairman of the Stowmarket group, Peter has also been voluntary warden at Bonny Wood since the Trust acquired it in 1987.


David Alborough
David is Group Property Services Manager for Essex & Suffolk Water and a land agent by profession. For over 20 years he has managed the company’s 26,000 acre estate in Suffolk, Essex, Norfolk and Northumberland which includes farms, woodland, Special Protection Areas, Special Areas of Conservation, SSSIs and operational land. His experience supports the Trust with strategic property matters as well as planning and business management.

John Cousins
John is a Chartered Surveyor and Land Agent and  manages the Thornham Estate near Eye. He has a mixed farm at Flowton which is managed to help wildlife. He was Chairman of Suffolk Wildlife Trust for a short period prior to taking the role of Head of Agricultural Policy for the Wildlife Trusts, a post he held for fifteen years. He was Chairman of Suffolk Farming and Wildlife Advisory Group and has just retired after 6 years as Chairman of Tastes of Anglia, the local food group. His passion is landscape which for him needs to be vibrant, diverse and full of wildlife.

Denise Goldsmith
As a marine biologist Denise has had the opportunity to work on a range of marine projects from selectivity of commercial fishing gear to the impacts of underwater noise. After completing a PGCE in Primary education she has taught in primary and middle schools and outreach education centres. Alongside marine biology her interest lies with outdoor education incorporating the environment and conservation. She is a Watch leader for the Carlton Marshes Wildlife Watch group and also volunteers with visiting school groups. Denise is keen to continue to develop education initiatives and promote environmental awareness through outdoor education.


Simon Roberts
Simon was brought up in Suffolk, backing on to what is now Camps Heath reserve. He worked as Managing Consulting Partner at PwC for 30 years and is now a freelance consultant and farmer with Red Poll cattle, Suffolk sheep and two Large Black pigs at a farm near Blythburgh that he and his wife have been creating /restoring for nearly 30 years. The farm is in HLS and is a haven for wildlife in the Blyth Valley. He is a long time SWT member and keen to contribute to how the Trust can make a positive and sustainable contribution to wildlife and the environment in the whole of Suffolk. Enjoys being Chairman of two charitable Trusts - one giving advice on how technology can help the young disabled, the other provides flats and support for young London (age 17-24 ) homeless to help them find stability and work.

Honorary Officers:

The Lord Tollemache (Patron)

President - Lord Blakenham (President)

Michael has had a lively interest in wildlife and nature from an early age. Former chair of the RSPB, the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew and a former President of the BTO and the Sussex Wildlife Trust. His Suffolk farm is managed with wildlife in mind and includes a chalk grassland SSSI and an important bat hibernaculum. In partnership with Suffolk Wildlife Trust he is developing a wetland nature reserve alongside the River Gipping – Papermill Reedbed.

Vice Presidents:

Lord Deben

The Rt. Hon John Gummer was the longest serving Secretary of State for the Environment during which he introduced payments to farmers for conservation and the UK's first environmental tax - landfill tax. He has been Chairman of the Marine Stewardship Council and Chairman of the International Commission on Sustainable Consumption. Locally he is creating species rich meadows on former arable land at his home near Debenham.

David Barker MBE

Chairman of 'Suffolk Creating the Greenest County' and former Chairman of SWT, Suffolk NFU and Suffolk FWAG. His family farm has won national awards from FWAG and NFU and David was awarded the MBE for services to conservation.

Sir Kenneth Carlisle

A trained barrister Sir Kenneth has had a distinguished twenty year career in Parliament where he was both Under-Secretary of State and a Minister. He has a lifelong love of nature and, as well as being a former Chairman of Suffolk Wildlife Trust, he has been a trustee for the World Land Trust, RSPB and RHS.

His family farm in Suffolk encompasses his conservation principles and the 170 acres of ancient woodland provide firewood coppice to heat the farm’s Leaping Hare restaurant and shop. He is passionate about the need to spread good conservation practice widely in the countryside.

Bernard Tickner

The founder of Lackford Lakes reserve through his donation of the original part of the reserve, The Slough.

Peter Wilson

Former chairman of SWT and former trustee of RSNC. Several of the Trust’s most important nature reserves are as a result of Peter’s outstanding generosity.

Dawn Girling


 Download our Governance documents below:

A guide to the governance of Suffolk Wildlife Trust

Memorandum & Articles of Association