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Board of Directors for Groundwork East

Our Board is the governing body for Groundwork East. We are privileged to have a wide variety of talented and experienced Directors providing solid governance for the Trust. The Board supports the Trust's senior management and, in addition, their skills and knowledge provide opportunities to enhance the business.

Neville Reyner CBE DL Hon DLitt
Neville became Chairman in February 2006 and is well known in Hertfordshire, the East of England and nationally through his positions as Chairman of Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce, Chairman of the University of Hertfordshire Business School Advisory Board where he is also a visiting Professor, Chairman of the School of Engineering (Electronics, Telecommunications & Technology) Industrial Advisory Group, the former Deputy Chairman of the East of England Regional Development Agency and former Chairman of Anglia Components in Wisbech the largest independent electronics component distributor in the UK. From 2008 –2011 Neville was also the President and Chairman of the British Chambers of Commerce based in London and Vice President of Eurochambre based in Brussels.

A Chartered Electrical Engineer, Neville became the UK Executive Vice President of Mitsubishi Electric Europe responsible for a turnover of £250 million in 1998 where he had earlier taken Mitsubishi Semiconductor from start up to over £150 million in the UK. Prior to this Neville started his working career in the coal mines of North East Lancashire where he worked as a coal face electrician moving on to unit electrical engineer. He then went into the semiconductor industry working for companies such as Analog Devices and Fairchild. He was appointed CBE in the 2001/2002 New Years Honours list for Services to Business, awarded Honorary Doctor of Letters by the University of Hertfordshire for outstanding achievement in 2002 and appointed Deputy Lieutenant for Hertfordshire in 2003.

Neville holds a strong interest in and commitment to environmental issue and enjoys playing a crucial role in the continuing growth and development of Groundwork Hertfordshire, Groundwork Luton and Bedfordshire and Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.

John Ball

John Ball joined the Board in June 2004. A law graduate and chartered accountant, he has gained significant financial and management experience in a variety of roles with PricewaterhouseCoopers, London Electricity, Veolia Water and bpha.

He has lived in Hitchin for over 27 years and his interests include walking, cycling, and gardening. He is also a qualified hockey umpire in local leagues. John also volunteers at the North Yorkshire Moors Railway, often working with the junior volunteers team.

Michael Hamilton MBE
After six years on the Groundwork Board from May 1995 to March 2001, Michael was asked to rejoin in March 2002. He has been a director of GEM since October 1995. A civil engineer by training, Michael joined the housebuilding division of John Laing in 1983 and since then has run a regional office for Laing Homes, been on secondment to the CBI for nearly two years, and managed the company's community affairs policy. He then managed the John Laing Charitable Trust as Trust Secretary until his retirement in 2013.

John Laing were involved in the setting up of Groundwork. Michael has been a Trustee for several charitable Trusts and has gained a good insight into the governance of Charities and Trusts. He also has a good understanding of the preparation and management of business plans and budgets.

Michael was awarded an MBE in 2010 for Services to the Voluntary Sector and in his spare time he enjoys tending his 'rather large' allotment.

Mike Master
Mike was appointed to the Board in February 2006 having served as a member of Groundwork Hertfordshire’s Advisory Panel for many years.

After a career in the ready-mixed concrete, mineral and waste industries, Mike now runs his own mineral development consultancy. He retired in 2003 as Director and General Manager of RMC Aggregates (Greater London) Ltd - formerly St Albans Sand & Gravel - where he was instrumental in the development of the company's marine aggregates and landfill business. He was also a member of the London Planning Advisory Committee, advising the Secretary of State on marine aggregate planning policy for London. Mike holds a keen interest in the potential of the quarrying industry to foster conservation initiatives. In 2008 Mike became Chairman of the Groundwork East of England Regional Committee and a member of the Groundwork Federation Board and in 2009 became Chairman of the Herts & Middx Wildlife Trust, and also a trustee of the Hertfordshire Community Foundation.

Stuart Pile
Married with two grown-up daughters and three grandchildren, Stuart retired in 2002 from a successful career in the telecoms industry and has travelled extensively all over the world. Stuart was a member of Hertfordshire County Council from 2003 to 2013, and was variously the Executive Member for Highways, Transport, Environment and Waste for 8 years.
Stuart was a Member at Welwyn Hatfield Council 1996 - 2006 (Welwyn South ward) and a Cabinet Member of Welwyn Hatfield Council from 2002 – 2004, during which time he served as Portfolio holder for e-Government, IT, Best Value and was CPA lead. During his time at Welwyn Hatfield Council, Stuart was also a representative on East of England Regional Assembly from 2000 – 2005.
Stuart is now a Hertfordshire Alderman.
Cllr Terry Douris

Terry is the Conservative Councillor for the Hemel Hempstead North West division, which includes Chaulden, Warners End and Gadebridge and was first elected in 2009. He is the Executive Member for Highways, Transport and Waste Management having been appointed to that role in May 2013. Terry is also a borough councillor in Hemel Hempstead for the Grovehill ward, having been first elected in 2007.

Terry was born in London, moving to Hertfordshire at the age of five. He started his own business which continues to operate in the area and beyond for the supply, installation and operation of audio-visual, sound and lighting equipment in a range of environments and a variety of business and social events. Terry has two daughters and four grandchildren to whom he is known as Papa.

As the county councillor for Hemel Hempstead North West, Terry represent the interests of the 14,000 residents of these communities on the County Council. He works closely with the Dacorum Borough Councillors for the same areas, the Member of Parliament, Mike Penning, plus active residents’ and community groups.

Prior to his appointment to this position in 2013 Terry was Deputy Executive Member for Education and Skills from 2009 and from 2012 to May 2013 he was Cabinet Member for Planning and Regeneration at Dacorum Borough Council..

Terry has a particular interest in education and school governance and has served as the Chairman of the GovernorLine Advisory Board and is currently a director of the National Governors Association. He also serves in a personal capacity as Chair of Governors at The Cavendish School and as a governor at Aycliffe Drive Primary School, both in Hemel Hempstead.

Rebecca Britton

Rebecca joined the board in June 2014. She is also Head of Communications and Partnerships for Urban&Civic. 

With a background in marketing, media handling and stakeholder engagement for the Imperial War Museum at Duxford, Forestry Commission England, and for regional and national Government, Rebecca leads the engagement of local business, partners and communities in the development of Alconbury Weald. She also oversees the development and delivery of Marketing and Communications for Urban&Civic and co-ordinates the delivery of community development and the jobs and skills strategy for the 20 year development. 

Rebecca started working for Urban&Civic in April 2011 as the second appointment to the Alconbury Weald project. The project will transform a former airfield (brownfield) site into a 150 hectare  Enterprise Zone, 5000 homes and 283 hectares (almost 50% of the site) of greenspace, as well as providing significant transport and community infrastructure to support new and existing communities.

The development is the first private sector client-led National Skills Academy for Construction in the country, enabling the scheme to mandate contractors on site to take on apprentices, work placements and local unemployed people. Urban&Civic have committed to working with Groundwork and a range of local partners to develop this approach to the businesses locating to the site. The Enterprise Zone will create up to 8000 jobs, with an estimated 10-12,000 more created by the construction, service and supply chain for the development as a whole.

As part of her role Rebecca is on the Board of the Huntingdonshire Chamber of Commerce and is Vice Chair of an action group for vulnerable children in the local deprived area of Oxmoor. She is also a key member of the Huntingdonshire Skills Group that is looking to deliver a step change in skills and aspirations across the district linked to the 20 year timeline of the Alconbury Weald development.
Cllr David Andrews

David joined the Board in 2014 and has a particular interest in engaging wherever possible with local residents and community groups. 

David is the Conservative County Councillor for Ware North division and was first elected in 2009.  He is Deputy Executive Member for Environment, Planning & Transport and also serves on the Audit Committee.