NT election of Council members

Saturday’s election of NT Council members may be just as significant as the vote on the members’ resolution on trail hunting. Although the Council members don’t get to decide very much they do elect the Chair of Trustees and the trustees from their number – so they elect the inner circle who do make most of the decisions.

Here are 19 0f the 20 candidates for election in a list taken from the Countryside Alliance website where they appear to have helpfully listed the candidates roughly in order of how likely they are to support trail hunting – the top 11 are broadly (or strongly) in favour whereas the next 8 are sceptical (or against). One candidate, Stephen Cox, is missing from the CA list (perhaps because he wasn’t going to be drawn on the subject) and another (Georgina Ramkoleea) withdrew from the process part way through.

The candidates highlighted in blue were elected on Saturday.

  • Elizabeth Staples, Staffordshire
  • Inga Grimsey, Suffolk
  • Caroline Jarrold, Norfolk
  • Bella Mezger, London
  • Caroline Kay, Wiltshire
  • Raymond Williams, Buckinghamshire
  • Duncan Mackay, Berkshire
  • Grevel Lindop, Manchester
  • Christopher Catling, Wales
  • Guy Trehane, Dorset
  • Sarah Green, Northumberland


  • Steve Anderson, West Midlands
  • Virginia Llado-Buisan, Oxford
  • Leigh McManus, Leicestershire
  • Emma Mee, Cambridge
  • Michael Tavener, West Midlands
  • Edel Trainor, Northern Ireland
  • Georgina Ramkoleea, Surrey
  • Joff Whitten, Suffolk

The Council candidates were split almost equally between more or less favourable and more or less unfavourable to trail hunting. However, four out of six of the newly elected Council members are favourable to trail hunting. Of course, there is more to being a NT Council member than your views on trail hunting.


Now, here’s that list ordered in a different way – by number of votes achieved by each candidate. The list of 6 names is the list of successful candidates (eith the highest votes).  This time the blue highlighting identifies the six candidates whose election was supported by the National Trust itself.

  • Steve Anderson, West Midlands 24,428
  • Christopher Catling, Wales 21,622
  • Sarah Green, Northumberland 19,439
  • Emma Mee, Cambridge 18,189
  • Caroline Kay, Wiltshire 17,579
  • Guy Trehane, Dorset 16,099


  • Inga Grimsey, Suffolk 15,226
  • Grevel Lindop, Manchester 13,052
  • Duncan Mackay, Berkshire 11,786
  • Edel Trainor, Northern Ireland 11,363
  • Stephen Cox, Suffolk 11,141
  • Virginia Llado-Buisan, Oxford 10,084
  • Caroline Jarrold, Norfolk 9,744
  • Bella Mezger, London 9,513
  • Elizabeth Staples, Staffordshire 8,956
  • Leigh McManus, Leicestershire 8,163
  • Joff Whitten, Suffolk 7,741
  • Raymond Williams, Buckinghamshire 7,301
  • Michael Tavener, West Midlands 5,049
  • Georgina Ramkoleea, Surrey (withdrew)

So, you see, the NT got five of the six candidates whose election it supported.  this too, in my experience, is fairly normal, although RSPB members had, when given the opportunity, quite a good record of voting for the non-preferred candidates. And that’s what I tend to do too!






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3 Replies to “NT election of Council members”

  1. Thanks for passing this on.... You're doing a better feedback job than the National Trust themselves.

  2. Very interesting. My question to ask the NT candidates was about shooting leases. It didn't get picked. But the fact that there was a large selection of candidates and that they did have to answer questions from the members was a big step in the right direction. I waited to vote until I'd read their responses. Otherwise it's so difficult to whittle down the choice unless you know the person. I changed my choices on the basis of what I read.
    It irked me that at the AGM the pro-hunting lobby (Mallalieu in particular) derided the motion as wasting the Trust's time. Of course it didn't. Fundamental conservation principles were at stake here and the membership had a right to vote.

    But people who care enough to join these charities should be more responsible in finding out who is running them and using their vote. Out of 5 million members hardly anyone voted, as a percentage. Have a good look at the Trustees - there are quite a few with obvious "country sport" affiliations or are involved professionally with those people. What struck me is the scarcity of environmentally/scientifically qualified trustees for what is one of the largest landowning charities in the UK. Plenty of business/finance types. We need them too but I don't think the balance is right. If we can change that we may get better environmental decision making.
    Re: the Trail hunting motion again. I think the only reason the NT has tightened up it's licensing rules (in August) was because of the member's motion. So it wasn't a wasted exercise. Let's make sure the membership watch carefully to see that the hunts stick to the rules. It's all our land after all.

  3. All killing of wildlife must be banned only savages kill for fun.

    There is plenty of food in the shops.

    Victor Rones.
    Advocate for animal rights-Worldwide.


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