Our Board of Trustees is responsible for the overall control and strategic direction of the Bradgate Park Trust.

They meet regularly to discuss, decide and review our strategies and policies and receive reports and updates from the Trust's senior managers.

Our trustee role is voluntary and they work to make sure we’re working to meet the aspirations of the Trust to maintain the land in our care for the benefit of wildlilfe and people.

We have a total of ten Trustees. In accordance with the terms of Charles Bennion’s gift, three Trustees are nominated by Leicestershire County Council, three by Leicester City Council and three by the National Trust. Following a review of governance by the Trustees in 2014, up to a further three Trustees can be appointed by the Board itself.

Trustees, David Lindley, Deborah Taylor and Andrew Beer

David Lindley QPM DL BSc[Hons], Deborah Taylor, Andrew Beer


David Lindley  QPM DL BSc[Hons].

After a varied and challenging career in policing working both in the UK and abroad David is currently a trustee of LOROS and an active volunteer both within the Park but also Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust. He is a life member of the Friends of the University of Leicester Botanic Gardens and currently the Independent Person for Leicester City Council dealing with public complaints about the alleged conduct of councillors.


Deborah Taylor

Deborah lives in Anstey with her husband Paul and rescue dog Duke, a Saluki/Greyhound Cross. Deborah has been an Anstey Parish Councillor since 2011, Charnwood Borough Councillor since 2015 and Leicestershire County Councillor since 2017. In her leisure time she enjoys keeping fit, dog walking and spending time with family and friends. Deborah enjoys visiting Bradgate Park and is honoured to be a Trustee, hoping to make a difference during her time here.


Andrew Beer

Andrew is Director of the Midlands region for the National Trust, responsible for a team of about 1500 staff and 10000 volunteers, who look after beautiful places for the benefit of the nation. In the Midlands this includes: great houses such as Hardwick Hall and Attingham Park: 80000 acres of land, from lowland farms to the heights of the Long Mynd and Kinder Scout: as well as back to back houses in Birmingham, a Chartists cottage, several villages, pubs, dovecotes, tithe barns and watermills

He trained as an environmental scientist and spent the first four years of his career working on international projects in some of the most polluted places in the world (China, Kazakhstan, Russia, Romania). He then worked as an environmental consultant in New Zealand for two years before returning to the UK to lead on habitat creation projects at Woodland Trust. He joined National Trust since 2009 as Head of Visitor Experience and Learning, where he led on the a number of strategic themes; the development of a family offer (natural play, 50 things to do before you are 11 ¾) and established long term partnerships with Arts Council England (Trust New Art) and Sport England,

In his spare time he acts as a taxi service for two boys, climbs mountains, plays tennis, runs (slowly), watches nature and (annually) presses apples for cider.

Trustees Nicholas Ruston, Sir Peter Soulsby and Sam Lattaway

Nicholas Rushton, Sir Peter Soulsby, Sam Latterway


Nicholas Rushton - Chair

Nicholas Rushton has lived in Ashby de la Zouch all his life. Nick is married to Daniella and his 21 year old son, Bertie, is studying Politics & History at King’s College, London. 

 Nick has been the Leader of Leicestershire County Council since 2012 and is a very experienced county councillor, serving from 1989-93 and from 2001 to present.  He has been a member of both Northwest Leicestershire District Council and Ashby Town Council since 1986, currently lead member for Finance and Resources for both councils. 

 Nick has been Chairman of the Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland Combined Fire Authority since 2015.   On the national scene, Nick is a member of the Local Government Association’s General Assembly and an Executive Board member on East Midlands Councils. He is also the national spokesman on Finance for the County Councils Network.  Nick is a Board member of the Midlands Engine for Growth and Midlands Connect Strategic Steering Group, working with Government to drive economic growth. Outside of politics, Nicholas is a successful businessman, runs Ashby Town market and has a keen interest in sport.


Sir Peter Soulsby - Vice Chair

I was born in Bishop Auckland and studied at City of Leicester College of Education and the University of Leicester. In 1973, I was elected to Leicester City Council.

Eight years later, I became Leader of the Council – a position I held almost continuously for the next 17 years. During this time I oversaw the council’s transition from district council to a unitary authority, taking on responsibility for all local government services in Leicester.

I also spearheaded Leicester’s City Challenge programme, bringing over £400m of jobs and regeneration to Leicester – including the land for the King Power Stadium and the development of the National Space Centre. In 1999, I was immensely proud to be knighted by the Queen for services to the City of Leicester. In 2005, I contested, and won, the parliamentary seat of Leicester South and remained as a Member of Parliament for that constituency until April 2011, when I resigned the seat in order to stand for election as Leicester’s first directly elected City Mayor.

On May 5th 2011, I won that election against ten other candidates, polling almost 47,000 votes – 55% of the votes cast. I am privileged to have been re-elected to serve as Leicester’s City Mayor for a second term, polling just over 71,500 votes – 55% of the votes cast.   I'm a former member of the Audit Commission and of the Beacon Council Advisory Panel. I've also been the Head of Regions for the British Lung Foundation and Deputy Chair of British Waterways. I've lived in Leicester for more than 40 years. My late wife and I had three children, Cassandra, Eleanor and Lauren, and nine grandchildren.


Sam Latterway

Sam is the Head of Landscape, Biodiversity & Recreation for the National Forest Company, where he has worked since 2006. He trained in biology and computing, going on to work in local government, government agencies, consultancy and the mining industry. In his current role, he leads on issues relating to wildlife, public access, heritage protection and the funding of landscape-scale conservation projects.

He has lived in the Charnwood area for more than 13 years and has developed a strong passion for its wildlife, landscape and heritage. Bradgate Park has long been a favourite destination, often with trusty camera in hand, and so he is proud to be a Trustee of the Bradgate Park Trust.

Stewart-Alcock_Manjula-Sood

Stewart Alcock, Manjula Sood


Stewart Alcock

Following an early career in agriculture and a degree in Agricultural Business Management I joined the National Trust in 2000 as Property Manager for Hanbury Hall in Worcestershire.  I moved to Calke Abbey as General Manager in 2004 where I lead the conservation and operation of the 2,300 acre Calke Abbey Estate, Stoneywell Cottage and Staunton Harold Church. I was brought up in Leicestershire in a farming family and have known Bradgate Park throughout my life. Through my career with the National Trust I have developed a passion for the care and protection of special places such as Calke and Bradgate and I gain great satisfaction from sharing these with people who come to enjoy them.


Manjula Sood

Manjula Sood holds BA, MA, LLD, and D.Litt. She was part of a high profile research programme with the world renowned John Hopkins University. She arrived in 1970, attended Leicester University and completed her Post graduate training.

She was a primary school teacher for almost 20 years, a benchmark at the time, as she was one of the first Asian female teachers in Leicester in 1973.

Manjula entered politics after the sudden death of her late husband, Cllr Paul Sood. She won with an impressive majority setting precedence by becoming first female Hindu Councillor.

"Leicester is a diverse and multicultural city and home to many communities.  I want them to know about the great heritage and history of Bradgate Park."


John Leach

John is the Director of Neighbourhood and Environmental Services at Leicester City Council.  He is responsible for delivering a number of key public services to the people of Leicester.  His responsibilities include Parks and Open Spaces, Regulatory Services, City Cleansing, Waste Management, Libraries, Community Centres, Community Safety and Community Cohesion.  He has worked at the City Council since 2014 and has a very broad public sector experience that includes working for local government at a regional level and for local authorities at a senior level in the East and West Midlands with responsibilities also encompassing Planning Policy, Economic Development and Leisure Services.  Prior to entering local government in 1999 he worked for the Environment Agency and the former National Rivers Authority where he focussed predominately on Environmental Protection and partnership working.

John lived and studied in Leicester in the late 1980s’/early 90s’ and now lives in Leicestershire with his wife and children.  He holds a Masters in Public Leadership and Management, a Bachelor of Science degree in Science and the Environment and the Chartered Institute of Water and Environmental Management’s Diploma in Water and Environmental Management.  In his spare time he has visited Bradgate Park many times, where he is able to combine his strong appreciation for the environment with one of his hobbies, photography.


Roderick O’Connor

Roderick O’Connor is an Assistant Director at Leicestershire County Council. He is responsible for delivering a broad range of services and leading on a number of key areas. His services include: Operational Property and Facilities Management, Country Parks and Forestry, Customer Service Centre, Communications, Business Support and also a number of commercial services including Catering, Beaumanor Hall and Print. He has worked for the County Council, since 2008 and has a broad range of experience managing a diverse range of other services including IT, HR and Shared Service Centres. Prior to working in local government he has experience of working in the retail sector. He holds degrees from Trinity College Dublin and Kingston University. He has a keen interest in the outdoors and in history. In his spare time he enjoys visiting Bradgate Park and other parks across Leicestershire and hopes to add value in his role as a Trustee of the park.