Our sole employee is a Project Manager, who coordinates the trustees and volunteer groups with specialist expertise in the key areas of marketing, fundraising, logistics, education and farmer liaison.
We have received a grant from a charitable foundation, to cover the wages of the Project Manager for three years.
Introducing the people behind Stump up for Trees
Dr Keith Powell is a seventh-generation Black Mountains farmer and a vet.
He studied veterinary medicine at Cambridge University and lives with his family off-grid in the Brecon Beacons. He has planted tens of thousands of trees since childhood and once drove from Wales to Madrid with a car boot full of conkers, which he planted by the roadside (he ran out in Cognac). In 2017, he initiated the project to plant on Bryn Arw common, adjacent to the Powell family farm.
Co-Founder and Project Manager
Robert Penn, former lawyer, round the world cyclist, journalist, best-selling author and broadcaster, moved to a house beside Bryn Arw, fifteen years ago.
He wrote The Man Who Made Things Out of Trees, about the ash tree and Woods: A Celebration, published by the National Trust. He wrote and presented Tales From the Wildwood, a series for BBC4 about woodland management. He is patron of the Small Woods Association and he set up a local community woodland group.
Hugh Colvin has planted or overseen the planting of 250,000 trees.
Since 1980, he has been directing, advising or raising funds for a wide range of forestry, environmental, community and arts projects, and looks after his own small woodland in the Brecon Beacons.
Phil Middleton worked in event management in Indonesia during the 1990s.
He returned to the UK to work in the conference industry, co-founding The Insurance Network in 2004, which company he stills runs with particular responsibility for sponsorship.
Our trustees, who are all local to the Brecon Beacons and equipped with diverse skills, play a significant role in supporting the charity. They meet regularly.
Belinda Davies read Economics at Cambridge University and trained as an accountant, working in public practice and investment management in the City, before moving to the Treasury Solicitors and finally the Financial Conduct Authority.
Belinda became passionate about organisational performance management and delivering value for money in the public sector. A qualified mathematics teacher, she also taught in a London secondary school for several years. She now lives on a small, wooded farm in the Black Mountains and works as a freelance management accountant. She is also the treasurer and a trustee of a local environmental charity.
James Suter runs the multi-award winning Gliffaes Hotel, near Crickhowell in the heart of the Brecon Beacons National Park. The hotel has a remarkable collection of specimen and native trees.
The son of a Dorset farmer, James served in the Coldstream Guards and worked for United Distillers (now Diageo). He has volunteered for the Brecon Mountain Rescue Team and served as a Welsh Assembly Appointee on the Brecon Beacons National Park Committee.
Andrew Erskine worked in the tourism industry for over 30 years, including two decades establishing, managing and selling a successful, family run tour operating business.
He has over seven years’ experience working on community energy projects in rural communities. He was chairman of Crucorney Environmental Group and director of The Green Valleys CIC (developing micro-hydro projects throughout Wales) for six years, with oversight of community interests and development.
Richard Roderick has an OND in Agriculture from Aberystwyth University. He is a Farming Connect mentor, an HCC Scholar, an associate of the Royal Agricultural Societies and in 2020-21, president of the Brecon Agricultural Show.
He is also chair of the Beacons Water Group, part the Dwr Cymru Welsh Water’s ‘Brecon Beacons Mega Catchment’. For 35 years, Richard has farmed at Newton Farm in the Usk Valley, a family business producing quality beef and lamb. The farm, part of environmental schemes since 2000 creating streamside corridors, planting hedgerows and trees and preventing riverbank erosion, has won the prestigious FWAG Silver Lapwing Award.
Our Board of Trustees is supported by an Advisory Board.
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