Research Director, BVA-BDRC
Enabling clients’ strategic development in the attractions, tourism and leisure sector, Max has been a director in BDRC’s specialist insights team since 2008. Applying progressive quantitative and qualitative market research techniques, the team help many UK attractions drive up visitor numbers, increase membership and put on great exhibitions. BVA-BDRC owns VisitorVerdict, the low cost online benchmarking model for small attractions and are also responsible for managing and delivering ALVA’s visitor experience benchmarking scheme for larger attractions. Prior to life at BDRC, Max was a financial magazine publisher in the city, focused on the global funds industry.
Joss is an accomplished, entrepreneurial leader, who is delivery focused. His experience has given him a strong understanding of the international visitor economy and wider business, and the challenges facing organisations. He has a passion for developing people and delivering outstanding customer service.
Before joining UKinbound in November 2018, Joss was Managing Director of Marketing at the Department for International Trade, responsible for the marketing and communications programme for UK exports and investment including the delivery of the events programme of over 1,000 events per annum (including the prizewinning UK Pavilion at Expo Astana 2017). He was previously Marketing Director of VisitBritain, involved in the development of the award-winning GREAT Britain and NI campaign. In February 2010 he was awarded Industry Personality of the Year by the readers of Meetings and Incentive Travel. He started out his life in tourism working in Food and Beverage at Disneyland Paris.
CEO and Director, ALVA
Bernard is the Director of the Association of Leading Visitor Attractions (ALVA), which represents the most important iconic and popular museums, galleries, cathedrals, palaces, castles, stately homes, historic houses, heritage sites, gardens, zoos and leisure attractions in the UK. For two years, 2015 to 2017, Bernard was the Chairman of the Tourism Alliance, which represents over 250,000 tourism businesses in the UK.
Bernard is Chairman of the London International Festival of Theatre (LIFT); Chairman of the Ambassadors’ Council of WWF-UK; Deputy Chairman and Trustee of Kids in Museums. He is a Trustee of: The Geffrye Museum of the Home; The Heritage Alliance; and is a Council Member of St Paul’s Cathedral, London. He is a former Chairman of VisitManchester; a former Trustee of WWF-UK, Centrepoint, the National Funding Scheme and was a founder Trustee of the Kaleidoscope Equality Trust. Two years ago, he was made the Mayor of London’s Ambassador for Cultural Tourism.
Chief Executive, BALPPA
Paul has spent the whole of his working life in the attractions industry. As a student he worked on the ghost ride at Thorpe Park. Having spent many happy years there heading up the operation, he moved over to the London Eye in 1999/2000, as part of the Tussauds Group to head up the operational launch of, what turned out to be Britain’s busiest paid for attraction. After five years and a purchase by the Merlin group, Paul worked on Business Development projects in the UK and around the world. Paul joined BALPPA as Chief Executive in 2012, and has led the organisation since then.
Managing Director, Knebworth Estates
Martha Lytton Cobbold
Martha, a dual citizen of the US and UK, is a graduate of NYU with a double major in Journalism and History of Art. She lives with her husband Henry in his ancestral home, Knebworth House, where they are now the 19th generation since it was built in 1490. Martha has worked directly with the estate since 1993, and is the Managing Director of the leisure management business and estate overseeing and running the lettings, day visitor season, catering, events, concerts, films and diversification projects. She administrates the charitable trust on behalf of 9 trustees. In addition to working with a number of regional committees in farming, business, and tourism, including being the current Co-Chair of Visit Herts, Martha has chaired the Tourism and Commercial Development Committee for the Historic House Association and is currently the Deputy President of HH.
Kate Nicholls is CEO of UKHospitality, the powerful voice representing the broad hospitality sector, having previously worked as CEO and Strategic Affairs Director of the ALMR.
In July 2019, Kate was appointed Chair of the Tourism Alliance, the membership organisation for the tourism industry comprising of leading trade associations/trade bodies within the sector. Kate is also Chair of Mayor of London’s Night Time Commission and is also a member of the Events Industry Board, London Food Board, Tourism Industry Council, Cultural Cities Enquiry, London & Partners Members Group and the Advisory Board for the Institute for Industrial Strategy.
After gaining a degree in English and a post-graduate diploma in competition law, Kate worked as a researcher in the House of Commons and European Parliament before joining Whitbread as Government Relations Manager, starting her career in hospitality in 1993. Kate was Director at one of the largest independent public affairs companies, working with a number of hospitality, retail and leisure accounts before establishing her own strategic communications consultancy in 2000. She is a graduate of Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge and Kings College London.
Head of Marketing, Castle Howard
Abbi is a proud Yorkshire marketing and communications devotee and current member of Castle Howard’s Senior Management Team. After a ten year career in Theatre and a shorter stint in Higher Education, Abbi made the move into the Heritage and Visitor Attractions sector and has been Head of Marketing and Sales at Castle Howard for the past two years (and is loving every minute!). Outside of life at Castle Howard, Abbi is also on the Board of Trustees for International Children’s Theatre Company, tutti frutti productions, is mum to a kamikaze 5 year old, is an avid foodie and, to offset the cake intake, likes to explore the UK’s beautiful outdoors as an ultra marathon trail runner.
Founding Director, Digital Visitor
Digital Visitor helps tourism, destination, experience, and hospitality brands use digital channels to attract more visitors – from around the corner or around the world. How? By providing a range of expert digital marketing services that encompass strategy, campaigns and content, digital advertising, PR and training. But in a way that’s completely results-driven and rigorously measured from start to finish. Brands come to us for all sorts of reasons. Namely, to help them raise awareness, increase sales, promote an experience, grow visitor numbers, or boost the local tourist economy. Often it’s a mix of these. Occasionally, it’s all of them.
England Director, VisitEngland
Head of Research & Insights, VisitEngland
Humphrey has worked in market research for over fifteen years. He started his career at Acanchi, a destination branding consultancy, where he spent three years working with the governments of Bahrain, the Dominican Republic and the Isle of Mann. He then moved over to the entertainment and technology sector, heading up European market research at SEGA, and then managing consumer insights for Microsoft’s devices and services group across Europe, working on products such as Surface, Xbox and Office 365. In April 2018 he joined VisitEngland as Head of Research. He leads a team responsible for delivering a wide-ranging programme of consumer and business research and intelligence to inform the work of the organisation and the English tourism industry.
Director, 14-18 NOW, Imperial War Museums
Jenny is Director of 14-18 NOW, the UK’s official cultural programme for the First World War centenary. Working with arts and heritage organisations across the UK, 14-18 NOW commissioned leading artists to create new artworks for a programme that reached over 35 million people. Headline projects include Jeremy Deller’s We’re here because we’re here, Peter Jackson’s film They Shall Not Grow Old and Danny Boyle’s Pages of the Sea on 32 beaches around the UK.
Jenny was Creative Producer of the London 2012 Festival for the Olympic and Paralympic Games. She created the public events programme at Somerset House, and spent 5 years as Director of Arts Centre Programmes at the Southbank Centre.
Founder, DJ Willrich Ltd
David is the founder and owner of D J Willrich Ltd a UK based company. DJW has over 32 years experience in designing and installing Audio Visual, Lighting and Show Control systems for the Heritage and Themed Entertainment industry throughout the World.
Projects vary in size and scope from Museums to Theme Parks around the world. DJW have worked on national, government projects and for leading organisation in many countries. David also feels privileged to be the Immediate Past President of TEA, the Themed Entertainment Association.