As a knowledge and evidence based organisation the work of the Trust is supported by the Conservation Committee.

The Committee advises and reports to the Trust’s Council on any appropriate matter relating to the conservation of our natural heritage.

The Convener of the Committee is a member of the Trust’s Council and other members are selected through an open recruitment process. Committee members should generally be members of the Trust.

Specifically the Committee advises on conservation issues of strategic importance to the Trust and on its conservation priorities, policies and advocacy programmes. The Committee also support the Trust’s wildlife reserve acquisition, disposal and management policy and practice, and monitors and advises staff on the content of responses to external consultations.

Dr Ian Jardine OBE
Vice Chair (Convenor, Conservation Committee)

Ian was born in Edinburgh and lives in Perthshire. He has degrees in Ecology and Zoology and spent most of his career with Scottish Natural Heritage (now NatureScot) where he was Chief Executive for 15 years. He also worked for Scottish Government and the European Commission, helping to review its nature legislation. He has a life long interest in wildlife and in helping people to experience and enjoy it sustainably. He is also a Trustee of the Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh.

Julian Caldecott
Deputy Convenor, Conservation Committee

As an ecologist, Julian has mainly worked on tropical wildlife research and conservation, and on consulting and writing about solutions to challenges around biodiversity, ecosystems, water and climate change. His priorities include promoting ‘peace with nature’ and the climate emergency response by advising official aid donors on partnership-based ecosystem protection, education and governance. His interests include history, natural history, and exploring Scotland’s landscapes. His key aim is to promote globally aware and networked actions that build on Scotland’s precious resource of public enthusiasm for safeguarding heritage, natural beauty and ecological integrity.

Dr Tim Duffy
Vice Chair (Watch and Groups)

Tim is currently Vice-Chair and Planning Secretary of the Trust’s Lothians members Group. He has previously served terms as Chair of that group and many terms as a Trustee on this Council, during which time he has cycled between all the Trust’s wildlife reserves to raise money for the 50th anniversary. Currently Vice-Convenor of the Council’s Conservation sub-committee and recently retired from a career in the Natural Environment Research Council, Tim has three degrees in ecology and is now studying botany, Gaelic, Chinese painting, calligraphy and the clarsach!

Alasdair Lemon
Council Member

Alasdair has volunteered for the Trust for a number of years, currently he is a Trustee and sits on the Conservation Committee. Previously he sat on the committee for the Stirling and Clackmannanshire Local Group and was a Young Leader. He has an Honour’s degree in Marine Biology and a Master’s degree in Wildlife Biology and Conservation. Having previously worked for Froglife, Buglife and the RSPB he currently works for NatureScot as a Marine Ornithology Adviser.

Andrew Binnie 

Andrew is a marine conservationist based on Arran with an MSc in ecosystems management. As Director of the Community of Arran Seabed Trust, he led on delivering the South Arran Marine Protected Area. He has appeared on radio and TV advocating a ban on scallop dredging and worked for conservation and development groups in Scotland and Papua New Guinea. He has over 30 years’ experience in business and NGO management gained with charities, volunteer agencies and in educational publishing.

Ro (Rowenna) Scott

Ro is a terrestrial ecologist with degrees in biology and environmental history. Now based in the Black Isle, she enjoyed a 30-year career in the statutory nature conservation sector in the Highlands. This included jobs advising on: deer management; Local Biodiversity Action Plans; and partnership working with NGOs. After retiring from Scottish Natural Heritage in 2008, she worked as a self-employed ecological consultant for ten years. Always actively involved in biological recording, with particular interests in higher plants and mammals, voluntary positions have included Chairing Highland Biological Recording Group and Inverness Botany Group.

Professor Brian Huntley

Born in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Brian’s interest in natural history was encouraged from an early age by his parents. His first degree was in Botany, followed by a doctoral degree studying the contemporary vegetation and vegetation history of two National Nature Reserves in the eastern Highlands. After almost five years as a post-doctoral researcher, he was appointed as a Lecturer at the University of Durham. Here he subsequently worked for the rest of his career, progressing to a Senior Lectureship and then a personal Professorship, and serving for 6 years as Head of Department. He retired in 2018, since when he holds an Emeritus Professorship. He is a member of the Steering Committee of the IUCN SSC Climate Change Specialist Group, has acted as a consultant to the Bern Convention Group of Experts on Biodiversity and Climate Change, and has been a member of various national and international working groups addressing issues related to the conservation of biological diversity in a world with a changing climate. He has published four books, over 50 book chapters, and more than 175 papers in scientific journals. His research has ranged from global in scope to studies of the Southern Alps in New Zealand, Southern Africa, Italy, the Iberian Peninsula and the European Arctic, as well as Scotland.

Alistair Whyte

Alistair is a nature conservationist with a background in land management and major ecological restoration project delivery. He has worked for the Wildlife Trusts, NatureScot, Forestry & Land Scotland, and RSPB, and is now Head of Plantlife Scotland, and convenor of Scottish Environment LINK’s Wildlife Group. He is an enthusiastic botanist and birdwatcher, with a particular interest in upland/montane environments, mountain woodland and mountain plant communities. He grew up in rural Angus and now lives in Perthshire.

Ina Porras

Originally from Costa Rica, Ina has lived in Scotland for 20 years. As an environmental economist, her career began in Costa Rica on the onset of a revolutionary pathway that transformed, for the better, the country’s approach to nature and happiness. She moved to the UK in 1999 to work with a leading international Think Tank on environment and sustainable development in Latin America, Asia and Africa. In 2019 Ina moved to the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (then DFID), where she helps mainstream Nature and Climate ambition and action across FCDO’s diplomatic and development portfolios. Ina is passionate about the environment, and -despite the rain and cold – adores the great Scottish outdoors.

David Jamieson

With degrees in Human Ecology, Environmental Management, and Town & Country Planning, David is a Chartered Ecologist whose career has spanned senior roles in local government, charities and academia. His principal interest is urban ecology and the interactions between people and their natural environment, advancing the cause of biodiversity within city authorities and as Director of TCV Scotland and TCV International. Having recently retired from managing the City of Edinburgh Council’s Parks & Greenspace Service and chairing the Board of Directors of Greenspace Scotland, he remains a strong advocate for environmental volunteering and community-led nature conservation. His present roles include providing biodiversity expertise to the EU’s European Green Capital and European Green Leaf programmes and when not in the city David is an enthusiastic traveller, hill walker and skier, regularly escaping to the mountains of Scotland, Europe and beyond.

Victoria Lancaster

Victoria is a Chartered Rural Surveyor and Area Land Agent for the North District of Forestry England, having worked previously in the private sector and for the National Trust. She is particularly interested in landscape scale regenerative land management, is a member of the innovative Wild Ennerdale team, and leads on rewilding partnership schemes. She has an English Literature MA from Edinburgh University and an HND in Countryside Management. She began her career working for Greenpeace, has lots of experience in the renewable energy sector, Board experience at the Lake District National Park Authority. and continues to be a passionate advocate for biodiversity and climate change mitigation. She lives north of Glasgow and in Cumbria, and loves swimming in the wild places of Scotland.

Mark Aitken

Prior to his retirement in 2022, Mark’s career of 38 years focussed on the sustainable use of land. This included leadership responsibilities across land policy development, research, consultancy, teaching and training, partnership working and management positions. Much of his career has involved working with senior staff across the Scottish Government and its Agencies, environmental charities, the rural land sector and other stakeholders.

• 2004-2022 – SEPA’s Principal Policy Officer on Land, and Manager of the Land Policy Unit. Mark was SEPA’s policy lead on rural land issues and his main focus was on the environmental impacts of rural land management. This included developing policies to minimise pollution, protect soil, air and water, mitigate climate change.
• 1992-2004 – Scotland’s Rural College as Lecturer in Environmental Sciences, and later Team Leader and Principal Consultant in Land Management.
• 1984-1992- Soil Science Adviser with Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food.

Mark is currently a Trustee for John Muir Trust, Nourish Scotland and Scottish Wild Land Group and his main interests are mountaineering, appreciating nature and wildlife watching.

Stay up to date with the Scottish Wildlife Trust by subscribing to our mailing list Subscribe now

Back to top