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Alison appointed to lead LEP

She will take over from Tim Smith in March

Jonathan Ashby

Jonathan Ashby


01635 886637

Alison appointed to lead LEP

ALISON Webster has been appointed the new chief executive of Thames Valley Berkshire Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP).

She will replace Tim Smith, who was CEO from 2012 until his departure for Oxford Innovation in October 2019, and will take up the post on March 23, 2020.

As chief executive, Mrs Webster will lead a small team supporting the LEP board to promote economic growth in Berkshire.

Prior to joining the LEP, Mrs Webster was strategy and policy director at the Rural Payments Agency and headed up the Rural Development Programme for England as part of Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).

She has previously set up and run the Essex, Southend and Thurrock learning and skills council as their executive director and has been chief executive of two careers service companies – Essex Careers and Business Partnership and Capital Careers.

Mrs Webster said: “I am delighted to be joining Thames Valley Berkshire LEP as chief executive.

“This is a critical time for Berkshire – businesses and communities are facing a series of challenges, including the ongoing economic and political uncertainty.

“The LEP is driven with real purpose in its work to help achieve the goals set out in its Strategic Economical Plan and Local Industrial Strategy.

“It will be my priority to make sure we are ready to meet these challenges.

“I look forward to joining the LEP board and working with new colleagues promoting this message of excellence through diversity.”

Thames Valley Berkshire LEP chairman Peter Read said: “Alison has the leadership track record and breadth of experience we believe is critical to lead the LEP and deliver results for all our stakeholders.

“I am confident that, in Alison, we have found a CEO who will continue to lead the LEP in delivering economic growth in Berkshire through its Strategic Economic Plan, developing a Local Industrial Strategy and delivering current and planned programmes.”

Thames Valley Berkshire LEP is a private sector-led partnership of business, local authorities, higher and further education providers, community and voluntary organisations, using more than £218m derived from UK Government and European Union programmes.

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