Meet the team: Our Board of Trustees

07 November 2022


The Parks Trust is a charity and therefore is governed by a Board of Trustees who set the strategic direction of the organisation and ensure we are achieving our charitable objects.

Our board is currently made up of a team of 16 Trustees, they are all volunteers who very generously give up their time to oversee the expert care of over 6,000 acres of beautiful and inspirational green space in Milton Keynes.

To showcase the important work of our Trustees and to inspire new applicants to join, we have interviewed some members of our team to provide an insight into what it’s like being a Trustee for The Parks Trust.

Zoe Raven, Chair and Chair of Governance & HR Committee

What’s the best thing about being a Trustee?
Having the opportunity to make a contribution to such a great organisation and getting to know some inspirational individuals. The insight and learning is very rewarding, and there is never a dull moment.

What have been the surprising outcomes from taking on the role?
How much I have enjoyed it, and the range of different areas that I’ve learned about.

Have you any advice to people considering becoming a Trustee?
Don’t feel you have to be a certain type of person – diversity, including diversity of thought, is important and welcomed. Be prepared to learn about the issues and come with an open mind.

Chris Bridgman

What’s the best thing about being a Trustee?
It is an honour to be a Trustee of The Parks Trust and be part of a unique organisation that keeps the green spaces of Milton Keynes looking beautiful all year round, for all to enjoy and at no cost to its residents - the charity is exemplary.

What have been the surprising outcomes from taking on the role?
My favourite part is being able to spend time with the different departments and experience first-hand the broad range of skillsets and talents within the organisation, and the incredible, passionate staff that the Trust has. These opportunities help me to make decisions at board level to support day-to-day operations.

Have you any advice to people considering becoming a Trustee?
Being a Trustee is a very rewarding role for all. Any time and experience that you could offer is vital for the charity sector and to ensuring good governance. It can be both challenging and rewarding and through being a trustee, I have met many great people.

James Macmillan

What’s the best thing about being a Trustee?
The best thing about being a Trustee is having the opportunity to work closely with a really talented and dedicated group of people, including the Board with its diverse range of individuals, the hard-working Executive team and all the amazing staff and volunteers who ensure that the Trust continues to be successful in its mission to provide inspiring parks for the people of Milton Keynes.

What have been the surprising outcomes from taking on the role?
One of the most interesting roles that I had not expected to be asked to take on was as Chair of Whitecap Leisure, the organisation that is responsible for managing all the activities at Willen Lake South. There was a real desire to improve the facilities that we offered and during my stewardship we managed to design and build the new Watersports Centre and Café which I believe will be a real asset to the area for years to come – and this was despite all of the challenges of the pandemic during the build process.

Have you any advice to people considering becoming a Trustee?
Immerse yourself in the organisation and always ask the seemingly obvious question that is in your mind – if you are thinking it then probably someone else is as well and these questions often lead to interesting discussions and outcomes. Spend time getting to know the financial model that the Trust uses and if you have skills in that area maybe even look to improve it!

Gamiel Yafai

What’s the best thing about being a Trustee?
To work with genuine people who want to make a positive difference to the health and well-being of the citizens of Milton Keynes.

What have been the surprising outcomes from taking on the role?
Being able to positively challenge the decisions made or suggested by the team. Gaining new competencies such as working within a board and with people with different experiences. A greater appreciation for the outdoor space and becoming more adventurous.

Have you any advice to people considering becoming a Trustee?
Think about your why! For example, think about what added value you can offer The Parks Trust. What do you want to get out of the role? What competencies can you gain that will help you grow?

Robert Green, Chair of Audit & Risk Committee

What’s the best thing about being a Trustee?
Playing a part in the continuing success of Milton Keynes and, in particular, The Parks Trust. Also, the role itself is very interesting due to the size and complexity of the organisation.

What have been the surprising outcomes from taking on the role?
I knew the that charity was performing well but was surprised at how well it operates. It is, without doubt, a major influence in the success of Milton Keynes.

Have you any advice to people considering becoming a Trustee?
It is certainly a very rewarding and challenging thing to do.

Nick Lloyd, Vice Chair and Chair of Finance & Property Committee

What’s the best thing about being a Trustee?
Milton Keynes is an amazing city for many, many reasons. Its green space is one of those reasons and it is second to none. Being able to contribute in a very small way to that is hugely satisfying.

What have been the surprising outcomes from taking on the role?
I simply didn’t realise the scope of what The Parks Trust does. I thought it looked after some pretty spectacular parks very well. What I found was an organisation that: manages nature reserves and historical projects; runs a farming operation (and uses the cattle to manage some of the parkland); campaigns to ensure all new housing estates get the same quality parks that the rest of MK has; manages the balancing lakes that protect the city against flooding; manages the green space along all of MK’s grid roads (providing the houses of MK with visual and sound barriers from the grid roads) – and much more besides.

Have you any advice to people considering becoming a Trustee?
Definitely consider it. The Trustees need to have a broad range of experience and expertise – you don’t need to be from a business background or an ecology background to add to the group. If you love the parks, are a good listener and want to contribute, you will probably make a great trustee.


We hope you’ve enjoyed an insight into the role of a trustee at The Parks Trust. We will shortly have some vacancies coming up on our board. If you’re interested in learning more with a view to becoming a trustee please email our Chief Executive, Victoria Miles v.miles@theparkstrust.com and Victoria will be happy to have a chat and explain a bit more about the opportunities and what is involved.

View our full board of trustees



Discover our parks