The Canal & River Trust has filled four key customer service vacancies. Three waterway managers have been appointed to replace staff who have moved on to other roles and, in addition, a new head of business boating who will oversee the Trust’s dealings with the many waterway businesses across the network has been appointed ahead of Phil Spencer’s retirement this summer.

Waterway Managers
Waterway managers head up the local teams who look after the day-to-day operations of the canals across the Trust’s eleven waterway regions, including working with boaters, waterside communities, and the many clubs and organisations that have a stake in the health of the canals and rivers.

Ian Lane has been appointed as the waterway manager for the West Midlands with immediate effect, covering an area from Leamington Spa to Great Haywood and Stourport to Fazeley. Ian has been acting waterway manager for several months on secondment from his role as a principal engineer at the Trust.

Mark Evans joins the Trust as waterway manager for the Kennet & Avon waterway region, which also includes the Bridgwater & Taunton Canal, from 13 April. Mark has an estates management background and for the last decade has held leadership roles with Groundwork Wales, delivering a wide range of community based projects.

Vicky Martin will be joining the Trust on 20 April as waterway manager for the South East region, covering the area from Rickmansworth and Oxford to Warwickshire and Leicestershire. Vicky is an experienced attractions manager who has worked for a wide range of heritage, countryside and leisure attractions in the Midlands, Yorkshire and Cornwall, and is currently the general manager for the Orbit in the Olympic Park.

Head of Business Boating
Mike Grimes has been appointed as the Trust’s new head of business boating. Mike spent a large part of his career working for British Airways, most recently as head of customer operations at Gatwick, before leaving last year to restore a historic property in the Fens. He will join the Trust on 27 April to allow time for a handover with Phil Spencer before he retires at the end of June after 47 years of service.

Richard Parry, chief executive of the Trust, said: “Waterway managers are our key customer-facing roles, involved with every aspect of community engagement and making sure everything is running smoothly on their patch, and so these are vital appointments. Similarly, the national business boating team is responsible for managing and developing commercial use of the waterways, working with a wide range of waterway businesses, giving people more to experience and enjoy when they visit the waterways.

“It is fantastic to be able to attract such talented people and I’d like to welcome Mark, Vicky and Mike to the Trust. I’d also like to congratulate Ian Lane on his permanent appointment after winning over many of our partners and customers with the enthusiasm he has brought to the role during the time that he has been the interim waterway manager.

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