Phil Mulligan will take over as Peak District boss in September

Phil Mulligan will take over as Peak District boss in September

The Peak District national park has a new boss.

Phil Mulligan will join the park authority as chief executive from September.

He is currently director for the East Midlands of the Canal & River Trust and has an extensive background across the voluntary and environmental sectors.

Mr Mulligan will replace Sarah Fowler, who stepped down from the top job at the Peak District National Park Authority in March, to take up a post as the Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust chief executive.

Phil Mulligan said: “Joining the national park authority at such a pivotal moment for protected landscapes is a huge responsibility and I am honoured and excited to be joining the team.

“The need for nature recovery and climate mitigation has never been greater, nor has the opportunity to engage the national park’s residents and visitors. The Peak District has a special place in the nation’s heart and we need to ensure nature, climate, residents and visitors are at the heart of our work.”

He has held executive and board positions in organisations ranging from the Conservation Volunteers, the United Nations Association UK, the Landscape Institute, Environmental Protection UK and as a member of the National Trust’s council.

Mr Mulligan was also the vice-chair of the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs’ civil society advisory board when the government first considered the creation of the Canal & River Trust, following on from the former British Waterways with the organisation changing from a centrally funded body to a registered charity, as the Canal & River Trust operates today.

Mr Mulligan joins the authority following the publication of the government’s landscapes review, looking at the role of England’s protected landscapes. The authority said all national parks have been part of a ‘green recovery’ from the pandemic and have welcomed increasingly new audiences following the effects of Covid-19 lockdowns.

Chair of the authority Andrew McCloy said: “I’m delighted to welcome Phil Mulligan to the position of chief executive at such a pivotal moment for the Peak District, where the spotlight is on our protected landscapes perhaps more than at any time since their creation over 70 years ago.

“Phil’s extensive leadership credentials, often with volunteer support at its heart, will be invaluable to meeting the challenges and aspirations of a Peak District that stands ready to deliver for our protected landscapes and all that they offer.”

The national park authority’s head of law Andrea McCaskie will continue as interim chief executive until Mr Mulligan takes up his post in early September.

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