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28th Oct, 2021

Ryton-based horticultural charity appoints new chief executive

A HORTICULTURAL charity based in Ryton-on-Dunsmore has appointed a new chief executive.

Garden Organic, based at Ryton Organic Gardens, has appointed Fiona Taylor to the role – replacing James Campbell who is stepping down after almost eight years as chief executive.

A keen organic gardener, Fiona has worked in senior roles with charities, and also volunteers at a therapeutic gardening project near to her home in Worcester.

Fiona started her career as a broadcast journalist at the BBC and has a background in communications and campaigning, where she has championed the UN Sustainable Development Goals by covering issues such as fuel poverty, urban greening, deforestation and conservation.

Her first job in the charity sector was Head of Policy and Communications at Groundwork UK, where she worked with government departments and companies to deliver greener, safer places to live.

She went on to become Director of Marketing and Partnerships at Concern Universal, an international development non-governmental organisation with projects in Africa and the Indian subcontinent.

Fiona has held business strategy roles in the private sector, one with a global policy consultancy and most recently with a travel company putting conservation at the heart of its operations in East Africa.

With a particular interest in herbs, Fiona has established a small business supplying organic dried herbs and planted arrangements to local shops.

She said: “I am honoured to be taking on this role at a time when so many of us are thinking about how best to garden so ecosystems can re-start.

“Organic gardening must be grown by positive action, to encourage the flourishing of biodiversity in communities the world over.

“I’m very much looking forward to getting to know and working with Garden Organic members, partners, staff and volunteers.”

Margaret Eyre, Chair of Garden Organic, said: “This is an exciting time for Garden Organic as we start to welcome growers into our new organic demonstration and learning garden near Coventry.

“We are responding to the surge of new gardeners following lockdown by increasing our online workshops, courses and information as well as running more organic gardening courses in our new garden. I am delighted Fiona is joining the charity at this key time”.

Visit www.gardenorganic.org.uk for more information on Garden Organic.

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