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River Action announces major expansion plans

Today we are excited to announce a series of initiatives which mark a major expansion of River Action’s scale and capabilities.

Principal developments of our expansion include:
  • The appointment of James Wallace, former Chief Executive of the Beaver Trust, as CEO.
  • The appointment of former musician and leading environmental campaigner Feargal Sharkey OBE as Vice Chairman.
  • The strengthening of River Action’s Advisory Board with the appointments of Jeremy Wade and Alison Caffyn. They join other leading figures from the UK’s rivers and environmental movement including: Ben Goldsmith; George Monbiot; Marina Gibson and Ruth Chambers.
  • The completion of the first phase of a major fundraising drive to support both River Action’s campaigning activities and local communities. This has included donations from over 500 individuals and significant funding grants from major environmental foundations such as: Frederick Mulder Foundation; Gower Street Foundation; the Cobalt Trust and T&J Meyer Family Foundation.
  • The appointment of Lauren Razek as Development Manager.
  • The commencement of the recruitment process for several new positions including a Campaigns Coordinator, Communications Manager and Community Officer.
These developments mark a major move forward for River Action to fulfil its ambitions to become a leading UK environmental campaigning organisation.

 River Action Chairman Charles Watson said:

“The environmental challenges facing our rivers have never been more severe and River Action is determined to play its part in both changing the behaviour of corporate polluters and restoring effective enforcement of environmental regulations, something which in recent years has all but collapsed. I am particularly looking forward to working closely with James Wallace in fulfilling this mission. As one of the most successful and entrepreneurial leaders in the environmental NGO sector, we are extremely lucky to have him as part of our team.”

 Newly appointed CEO James Wallace said:

“What River Action has achieved under Charles’ leadership in such a short period of time is quite remarkable and it’s an incredibly exciting time to be joining the organisation. I can’t wait to start working more closely with our amazing team, Advisory Board and our many partners to help rescue Britain’s rivers by empowering communities, mobilising communications and influencing government policy and industry practice.”


New Vice Chairman Feargal Sharkey said:

With not a single river in the country receiving a clean bill of health, the emergence within the UK’s environmental movement of a new force of River Action’s agility and effectiveness is a very welcome development indeed. We only have a very short period of time left to save our rivers from irreparable damage and I am delighted to be working closely with the River Action team in the challenging months ahead.”

Check out our latest Impact Report where you can find out more information about our journey over the last nine months and what we have planned for next.


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