Who We Are
Denise Ashton - Trustee
Denise studied Geography at University College London and, much later, Environmental Science with the Open University. She has worked in the IT Industry with a long career in Project Management for IBM. Having made an escape from corporate life she now divides her time between fishing for anything with fins and working to improve rivers and their wildlife. She works part time for the Wild Trout Trust, and is a member of the Meon Valley Partnership.
Zam Baring - Trustee
Zam has spent the last 25 years in television, initially as a film-editor, subsequently as Managing Director and Chairman and latterly as non-Executive Director of KEO films, an independent factual production company whose varied output has won many awards and includes numberless episodes of the Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall River Cottage series, including the ground-breaking campaigning series’ Chicken Out and Hugh’s Fish Fight. He enjoys keeping pigs and making ham from them and, having spent much of his life in and around the headwaters of the River Itchen, is passionate about conserving the country’s freshwater environment.
Jon Bass - Scientific Officer
Jon is a freshwater ecologist by background whose professional life was spent with the UK Natural Environment Research Council. He worked initially for the Freshwater Biological Association, then the Institute of Freshwater Ecology and latterly the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology. His key interest is in freshwater invertebrates and he is a national expert on Blackflies (Simuliidae), an important chalk stream species. He is also an expert on the nutrient dynamics of chalk streams. Jon served on the Biodiversity Steering Group for the White Clawed Crayfish and the Chalk Rivers Steering Group and operates our river temperature loggers, liaising with agencies, other organisations and individuals interested in river temperature. He currently represents the WCSRT on the EA SW Liaison Panel, at meetings of the Stour Catchment Initiative, also its Steering Group and the Dorset-wide Monitoring Group.
Rae Borras - Trustee
Hailing from the East End of London where he had a successful career as an amateur boxer, Rae entered the spirit of the 60’s by working as a lead singer in successful soul bands both here and in the United States after finishing his Grammar School education. Deciding to get “a proper job” he chose Construction and qualified in Quantity Surveying and Construction management before founding Borras Construction in 1980. Several acquisitions later Borras Group is now one of the most successful privately owned companies in this sector. A passionate angler, having fished the canals of London since he was seven, Rae became captivated by the Hampshire Avon after catching his first salmon at 27lbs from the river. He was later to achieve a lifetime’s ambition by owning an important fishery on the same river and is now committed to the cause of promoting the welfare of the southern chalk streams and their associated ecosystems. Today, Rae is actively involved with TV productions associated with angling, most notably appearing with Geoffrey Palmer in The Compleat Angler series and most recently in The Game Fishers Diary series on Fishing TV.
Fiona Bowles - Trustee                                                            
Having enjoyed diving whilst studying Animal and Plant Ecology at Loughborough University, Fiona then spent 34 years working for Wessex Water, managing Environmental Services and project managing their freshwater research. Her career included many years representing Wessex Water on water industry steering groups for research and national standards as well as working locally with partners on the Hampshire Avon and developing a pilot project for the new Catchment Based Approach. Now enjoying more time to photograph fish (rather than catch them), Fiona continues her interest in river conservation as chair of the Stour and Poole Harbour Catchment Partnerships, the River Restoration Centre and also on the Council of the Freshwater Biological Association.
Clay Brendish CBE - Trustee
Clay’s professional background is in the software industry, having founded Admiral plc (now part of Logica) in 1979. He is currently non-executive chairman of Anite plc and SThree plc. He is a trustee of Economist Newspapers Ltd, and a non-executive director of Herald Investment Trust plc. He was a former non-executive director of BT, and chairman of the Met Office. He is a riparian owner on the lower Test and is chairman of the Test and Itchen Association.
Paddy Douglas-Pennant - Treasurer
Paddy is a retired Chartered Accountant who, after qualifying with Price Waterhouse in London, spent thirty years of his working life in private practice in Salisbury where he advised landowners throughout Wiltshire, Hampshire and Dorset on financial and taxation planning. He remains a trustee of a number of landowning family trusts and charities. He is Chairman of the Wiltshire Fishery Association, one of the founding members of the WCSRT and is Treasurer of the Piscatorial Society. He has been an ardent fisherman from the age of four when he caught a rudd in a farm pond.
Jim Glasspool - Trustee
Jim retired from Shell Group in 1993 where he held various business management positions in chemicals. He has played an active part in fishery management and nature conservation issues in Hampshire both as Secretary of the Test and Itchen Association (1993-2009) and as a former Chairman of the Hampshire Area Environment Group, the Hampshire Fishery Committee and Southern RFERAC (2002 to 2008). Nationally he chaired the Fisheries & Angling Conservation Trust Ltd (FACT), into which various national angling organisations merged to form the Angling Trust in 2008, and is a current Board member of that organisation. He was also a member of the Moran Committee and sat on the South East River Basin Liaison Panel. Jim lives near Winchester in Hampshire.
Jane Hall - Trustee
For the past 30 years Jane has been a Furniture Conservator. Her areas of particular expertise are the restoration of Oriental Lacquer, gilding painted furniture and decorative finishes for some of the foremost antique dealers in the country. She has worked on many large projects including the restoration of Mansion House in the City of London and Windsor Castle following the fire in 1992. She is a Member of ICON and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. In 2013 she took over the running of her family estate near the New Forest.  She has been a keen fisherman since she was a child.
Willie Manners - Trustee
Willie Manners is a solicitor specialising in general commercial disputes and contentious property matters.  He is a partner with the London law firm Macfarlanes LLP, where he is head of litigation. Lord Manners’ family are the owners of the Avon Tyrrell Estate on the Hampshire Avon near Christchurch.
Dr Gary Mantle MBE - Trustee
For the past 27 years, Gary has been Chief Executive of Wiltshire Wildlife Trust. He has a degree in ecology from Lancaster University and a doctorate from the Open University where he studied fish farming. He was previously Head of Urban Ecology at Greenwich University and National Officer for a government initiative, called UK2000. Chaired by Richard Branson, UK2000 brought together the private and voluntary sector with the public sector in order to tackle environmental problems. In 2000 he was awarded an MBE for services to nature conservation. Gary is also founder and President of The Sensory Trust, a national charity promoting equal environmental opportunities for people with disabilities and a Trustee of the Wild Trout Trust.
Rod Parker - Trustee
Rod is an agricultural economist who started his own consulting and market research business in biotechnology after 11 years with the Battelle Memorial Institute. He is involved with the fertiliser and pesticide industries and has developed methodologies to understand the dynamics of weeds, insects and diseases in crops. He is a naturalist and fisherman and has had a rod at Wherwell for many years.
George Seligman - Chairman
George became a trustee and the chairman of the Trust in May 2012. He has practiced for many years as a corporate lawyer, retiring in late 2012 from the City law firm Slaughter and May. He divides his time between London and his farm in the Test valley. He has a strong interest in education, chairing the governors of Winchester House School in Brackley, Northamptonshire, and being a trustee of Countryside Learning, a charity which educates inner city children about the countryside. George is a keen fisherman and chairs the advisory committee for the Timsbury Fishery on the Test.
Robert Wellard - Trustee
A former commando diver, Bob swapped his wet suit for a pair of waders and now works full-time as Fisheries Manager for the Piscatorial Society on the rivers Itchen, Test, Avon and Wylye. Bob is active on a number of regional fisheries committees including the Wiltshire Fishery Association, Upper Itchen and Bourne Rivulet Initiatives. A member of the Institute of Fisheries Management (MIFM) for many years, his specialties include: River habitat restoration and management from initial concept through to design and delivery and associated areas of health, safety and environmental management.
Mike Winter - Trustee
Retired as a Commander Royal Navy Submarine Weapons Engineer Officer after 34 years service. He started fishing in Scotland in 1983 and on moving south joined Portsmouth Services Fly Fishing Association [PSFFA] later becoming its Secretary & Treasurer - a post he held for 10 Years. During this period became heavily involved with various authorities - especially EA committees working on Catchment Management Plans etc to meet the Water Framework Directive. For 21 years has been the Company Secretary for the Services Manor Fishery Ltd which owns the Riparian rights of 900yds of the river Itchen [A PSFFA beat]. He was invited to become a Director of the Test & Itchen Association to bring knowledge of the River Meon to the Board, which now forms part of the association's remit. For 10 years was the Gosport and Fareham Divisional Secretary for SSAFA [The Armed Forces Charity]. An inaugural Member of the WCSRT.
Lee Bush - Administrator
Having graduated from London University in 1993 with a BA Hons, Lee worked in the fast-moving media industry, based in London. In 1997 Lee moved to Manhattan, New York with her husband Andy. They subsequently returned to the UK in 2002. Having taken a career break to focus on and raise their three girls, Lee now uses her communication and organisational skills to help WCSRT across all key areas of administration.
Dr Paul José Director
Paul joined the trust from Huntingdonshire District Council where he was head of Environmental Management. He has extensive knowledge of the environmental issues that face our rivers and wetlands today, having worked for the Environment Agency leading on biodiversity and fisheries in East Anglia, the RSPB as lead advisor for UK and European wetlands, Anglian Water, English Nature and in the Ministry for Fisheries and Food. Paul has written a number of books on environment management including several UK and European river, wetland and habitat management guides. He has also led many major EU funded LIFE projects and been involved in a range of conservation, water resource and flood defence related projects in the UK and globally. Paul is a keen angler and is looking forward to catching his first Test & Itchen trout as well as barbel, chub and pike on the Avon.
Rupert Kelton - Catchment Officer (Test & Itchen Catchment Partnership)
Rupert graduated from the University of Reading in 2004 with a degree in Land Management. He also has a Masters degree from the Royal Agricultural University, Cirencester where he wrote his dissertation on ‘Catchment Sensitive Farming in the Test Valley’. Rupert is a Member of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors and before joining the Trust, worked as a land management advisor with the BASC, helping to deliver a DEFRA funded partnership project with the Westcountry Rivers Trust. Having grown up farming along the banks of the Upper Test and latterly, further up-stream near the source of the River Test, Rupert is passionate about conserving and enhancing the unique local chalk river and wider farmland environments. Rupert is BASIS and FACTS qualified.
Vee Moore - Education Officer
Vee is a freshwater conservationist with a passion for citizen science, school and community education. She has experience as a project officer with the Arun and Rother Rivers Trust where she led educational activity, projects and training on water related work. She was formerly water policy officer with RSPB and has a masters degree in Environmental Management (Water Resources). Additionally qualified in photography and journalism, Vee brings a portfolio of skills and competencies to the role of Education Officer.
Liam Reynolds - Catchment Officer (Hampshire Avon Catchment Partnership)
Liam has a BSc in Environmental and Countryside Management and just finished a masters degree in Aquatic Sciences. Liam was Catchment Officer for the Norfolk Rivers Trust and has experience in stakeholder engagement, project management and delivery. He has particular interests in salmonids, coarse fish and eels as well as water quality and soils. He has a range of habitat management experience and is a keen angler.
Ses Wright Project Manager
Ses was a senior researcher at the University of East Anglia and former deputy director of MSc courses in Environmental Impact Assessment and Environment Management/ Auditing. She works on a part-time basis for both the Arun and Rother Rivers Trust and Wessex Chalk Stream and Rivers Trust. An experienced project manager, she leads delivery of river habitat, fish passage and a range of river enhancement projects.
© Copyright 2017 Wessex Rivers TrustWeb Design By Toolkit Websites