The Royal Parks is a charity created in March 2017 and officially launched in July 2017 to support and manage 5,000 acres of Royal parkland across London.
We look after eight of London’s largest open spaces; Hyde Park, The Green Park, Richmond Park, Greenwich Park, St James’s Park, Bushy Park and The Regent’s Park, and Kensington Gardens. We also manage other important open spaces in the capital including Brompton Cemetery, Victoria Tower Gardens, Canning Green and Poet’s Corner.
In 2017, we took over the role of managing the parks from The Royal Parks Agency – a former executive agency of the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), as well as fundraising and some education from the Royal Parks Foundation. The two organisations joined forces to create our charity and bring together the best of fundraising, education and park management.
The parks are owned by the Crown with their responsibility resting with the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport. The Royal Parks charity manages the parks on behalf of the government.
On this page:
The Royal Parks' Board
The Royal Parks is led by a Board of Trustees, which decides how the charity is run, how we spend money and ensures what we do is for the benefit of the parks and our visitors. The trustees are led by a Chairman, and are appointed for their skills and experience. Alongside some ex-officio roles, others are appointed by the Secretary of State for the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) and the Greater London Authority (GLA). They are non-executive and unpaid.
The members of The Royal Parks' Board are:
- Loyd Grossman CBE (Chairman)
- Councillor Nickie Aiken
- Ruth Anderson
- Heather Blackman
- Lt Col Michael Vernon
- Bronwyn Hill CBE
- Wesley Kerr OBE
- Jeff Jacobs CB
- Councillor Georgia Gould
- Richard Hamilton
- Councillor Danny Thorpe
Loyd Grossman CBE (Chairman)
Loyd is a broadcaster and entrepreneur who has a long association with the arts and heritage sectors. He is chairman of Gresham College, a trustee of the Warburg Charitable Trust, a governor of the British Institute of Florence and president of the Arts Society.
His past appointments include service as a board member of English Heritage, the Museums and Galleries Commission and the Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England. He was formerly chairman of the Churches Conservation Trust and vice chairman of the Royal Drawing School. A keen guitarist, he performed for the eighth time at Glastonbury this year.
In 2015, Loyd was awarded a CBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List for services to heritage.
Councillor Nickie Aiken
Nickie is Leader of Westminster City Council, and previously held roles that covered children and young people, parking, community protection and premises management.
Her portfolio includes city policy, corporate strategy, performance and communications, government relations and public affairs, ceremonial and Lord Mayoral matters, the People Services function and liaison with the BIDS and major business stakeholders in the city.
Away from politics, Nickie has enjoyed a career in communications including roles with The Children’s Society and Bradford & Bingley where she headed up the press office. She currently undertakes a number of training courses for the PRCA, the communications industry trading association.
Ruth is a chartered accountant and a non-executive director of two UK listed companies, Ocado Group plc and Travis Perkins plc, and has chaired the audit committee at both companies.
Her prior experience includes being a non-executive director and chair of the audit committee at Coats Group plc from 2014 to 2018 and a trustee and member of the audit committee of the charity The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award for ten years to 31 March 2019.
Prior to her non executive career, Ruth worked for 33 years at the professional services firm KPMG, where she was a member of the UK board for six years, retiring in 2009 as a partner and vice-chairman.
Ruth was a member of the advisory board of The Royal Parks from 2008 to 2016 when it was an executive agency of DCMS.
Heather is Chief Executive Officer of the lifestyle clothing brand Finisterre. She has worked in retail for 30 years including at a variety of high street names and premium brands including Laura Ashley, Fat Face and Hotel Chocolat.
Starting in buying and merchandising, then multi-channel retailing, Heather has vast experience of brand, strategy and commercial planning centred around the customer. She is also a non-executive director for Line Life Ltd and R Chocolate of London.
Lt Col Michael Vernon
Michael is the Comptroller in the Lord Chamberlain's Office, and head of one of the five departments in the Royal Household. The Lord Chamberlain's Office is responsible for all ceremonial events attended by The Queen, including State Visits, the State Opening of Parliament, investitures and garden parties.
Michael joined the Royal Household on 1 October 2014, assuming the appointment of Secretary of the Central Chancery of the Orders of Knighthood. Prior to this, he served for over 35 years in the Coldstream Guards.
Bronwyn Hill CBE
Bronwyn is a non-executive director of the Office for Nuclear Regulation, governor at the University of Greenwich, director of the Trafalgar Rowing Centre and chair of Globe Rowing Club.
She was previously the Permanent Secretary at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and has significant experience of transport strategy and programmes at the Department for Transport. Bronwyn is a Friend of Greenwich Park and a keen rower on the Thames at Greenwich.
Wesley Kerr OBE
Wesley is a broadcaster, journalist, historian, horticulturist and curator. He has worked on numerous BBC television and radio programmes, including Nationwide, Newsnight, Panorama, Holiday, Watchdog, Health Check and Value for Money and the various daily news outlets. He has worked in 40 countries and continues to write for national newspapers and journals.
Wesley is a vice-president of the Metropolitan Public Gardens Association. He was a previous member of the RHS Show Gardens Panel and was chairman of the Heritage Lottery Fund Committee for London for seven years.
Wesley was a member of the advisory board of The Royal Parks from 2013 to 2016 when it was an executive agency of DCMS.
Wesley was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List in 2015 for services to heritage.
Jeff Jacobs CB
Jeff was Chief Officer of the Greater London Authority (GLA) until his retirement in 2018. Before this, he was Chief Executive of the Government Olympic Executive at the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS), where he led the government team which helped win London’s 2012 Olympic bid.
On joining the GLA in 2007, Jeff was a Senior Adviser in the Mayor’s Office and subsequently became the Director of Transition after the election in May 2008.
Jeff’s previous roles include Director General (Children, Young People and Communities) at DCMS and Executive Director of Policy and Partnerships at the GLA.
Councillor Georgia Gould
Georgia was appointed Leader of Camden Council in May 2017. She was elected a councillor for the Kentish Town ward in 2010, and then made her way into Cabinet positions serving as portfolio holder for both young people and adult social care.
Georgia is the Deputy Leader of London Councils and Executive Member for Employment and Skills.
Georgia has a particular interest in youth politics and published a book called Wasted: How Misunderstanding Young Britain Threatens Our Future. It draws on two years spent travelling around the UK interviewing young people about why they weren’t engaged in politics.
Richard has over 20 years’ experience in strategy across business, government and civil society. He has worked variously with Clarence House, the British Council, Ordnance Survey, ENO, Business in the Community and the Department for Business.
Richard began his career with Barclays PLC, where he spent ten years, followed by eight years at KPMG LLP. He has been a local authority member, a non-executive director of an NHS Trust, and for over a decade has been on the advisory board of the Queen Elizabeth II Garden in New York. Richard holds an MBA from the University of Oxford.
Councillor Danny Thorpe
Danny was appointed Leader of the Royal Borough of Greenwich in May 2018. He has been a councillor since July 2004.
Danny grew up in the borough and represents the Shooters Hill ward. He was appointed to the council’s Cabinet as Lead Member for regeneration and transport in 2014. He became Deputy Leader in 2016 and held the Cabinet portfolio for regeneration and sustainability.
Senior Management Team
The senior management team oversees the day-to-day running of the Royal Parks. Led by a chief executive, the team recommend parks’ policy and strategy to the Board of Trustees, as well as managing an expert and committed workforce of staff and volunteers dedicated to offering you free open space in London.
The members of the Senior Management Team are:
- Andrew Scattergood - Chief Executive
- Liz Mullins - Director of Commercial
- Clare Wadd - Director of Resources
- Vacant - Director of Fundraising and Engagement
- Darren Woodward - Director of Estates and Projects
- Tom Jarvis - Director of Parks
Andrew Scattergood - Chief Executive
Andrew has been Chief Executive since June 2015. As part of this role he is also a Commissioner of the Crown Estates Paving Commission, and a member of the Exhibition Road Cultural Group, Film London Executive Task Force and GLA Sports Stakeholder forum. Previously he held roles at Ofcom, Department for Culture, Media and Sport and the Foreign Office. He worked on the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics for 10 years. Earlier in his career he was Private Secretary to the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport.
Liz Mullins - Director of Commercial
Liz joined The Royal Parks in 2008 to lead its programme for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, with Royal Parks hosting 11 Olympic and Paralympic sporting competitions. Liz joined the Cabinet Office in 2001, on secondment from the private sector, working on projects to reduce regulatory burdens in the public sector, and then establishing and running a Prime Minister-chaired Cabinet Committee on Better Regulation, before moving to work in the Government Olympic Executive. Prior to that Liz spent 10 years in the hospitality industry.
Clare Wadd - Director of Resources
Clare joined the Royal Parks in December 2018 from C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group, a network of the world’s megacities committed to addressing climate change. She trained as an auditor, qualifying as a chartered accountant in 2000, and worked at KPMG for two years, auditing mainly music clients. After leaving practice, Clare ran the finances of media companies, most recently as Chief Financial Officer of an expanding international media tech group, where she was instrumental in securing private equity investment. She made the move to into Not For Profits in 2013, and was Director of Finance and Resources at London Youth for four years. Clare has a BSc in Economics. Before becoming an accountant she worked in the music industry, running a small record company for eight years.
Director of Fundraising and Engagement
Darren Woodward - Director of Estates and Projects
Darren joined The Royal Parks in October 2018 after 15 years working as a Project Manager for Rider Levett Bucknall, a leading property and construction consultancy. During his time there, he worked in partnership with The Royal Parks, managing several high-profile projects, including the Hyde Park Super Nursery, the Richmond Park Golf Course, and the restoration of the Henry Moore Arch in Kensington Gardens. Darren began his career with a degree in Engineering on a Ministry of Defence navy sponsorship, leading to placements working as a civilian project engineer on warships and submarines, including a three-month posting on HMS Invincible during the Persian Gulf Conflict in 1999.