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The Trustees

Trustees are invited to join the BRE Trust board on the basis of their experience and expertise in their respective fields and its potential impact on Trust activities. The role of the Trustees is to provide strategic direction to BRE Trust and its companies and:

  • to manage and administer the activities of the Trust, its assets and investments, in accordance with the relevant Acts and guidance issued by the Charities Commission;
  • to give strategic direction to the work of the Trust and group companies;
  • to input into the strategic business plans of the group companies;
  • to extend the scope of the Trust’s charitable activities for the public good and seek funding;
  • to develop research and education objectives for the charity and to prioritise expenditure against such objectives;
  • to act as ambassadors for the work and objectives of the Trust and its group companies;
  • to periodically benchmark the activities and achievements of the BRE Trust and its group of companies;
  • to ensure the excellence of scientific standards within the BRE group of companies.


The Trustees are:


James Wates CBE

Chairman, Wates Group

James is Chairman of the BRE Trust. He has worked in the construction industry all his life, having joined Wates Construction as a management trainee in 1983 and progressing through various roles to become Chairman of Wates Group in 2013. He holds numerous other positions within the built environment, including Chairman of the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB), Co-Chairman of Build UK, Past President of the Chartered Institute of Building, a Trustee of The University College of Estate Management, and a Non-Executive Board Director of Argent Services LLP. His commitment to society and education has been demonstrated in his roles as a Member of the government’s Apprenticeship Delivery Board, Chairman of the think tank Tomorrow’s Company, Vice Chairman of the Queen Elizabeth’s Foundation for Disabled People, a Governor of the Emanuel School, a Governor of the University of Westminster and a Patron of the Wates Family Enterprise Trust. In January 2012 James was awarded the CBE for services to Construction and the Charitable sector.


Michael Dickson CBE FREng

Partner of BuroHappold 1976-2006

Michael is a founding partner of BuroHappold Engineering, having studied Mechanical Sciences at Cambridge University and Structural Engineering with Town Planning from Cornell University, US. In the Construction Industry he was Chairman of the Construction Industry Council 2000-2 and of Construction Research and Innovation Strategy Panel 2003-5. For a while he served on the Standing Committee on Structure Safety and was on Lord Justice Taylor's Working Group on the Safety of Sports Grounds. He is a visiting Professor of Engineering Design at Bath School of Architecture and Civil Engineering, following his 45 years of experience in engineering design and architecture on a number of major multidisciplinary building projects in the UK and internationally. Michael was awarded the CBE in 2005 and was President of the Institution of Structural Engineers in 2006. Michael has also been involved with many major construction organisations including being a Fellow of the Institution of Civil Engineers and Structural Engineers, the Royal Academy of Engineering, the Royal Society of Arts and an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Institution of British Architects


Peter Lobban OBE

Formerly Chief Executive, Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) 

Peter's experience covers economics, politics, the oil industry and construction. He applied his Econometrics studies as an academic at the London Business School. Following this, he became Head of Economic Policy at CBI, rising to Deputy Director of Employment Affairs. Peter then joined Shell becoming a Director of Shell Chemicals UK before moving to oil exploration and production and going overseas as a Director of Brunei Shell. He returned to the U.K. as a Director of Shell operations in the North Sea and as Chairman of the U.K. Offshore Petroleum Industry Training Organisation co-ordinating the industry's response to the Piper Alpha disaster. Peter joined CITB in 1998 as Chief Executive also becoming Chief Executive of ConstructionSkills following its establishment in 2004. He was a Board member of  Movement for Innovation - the precursor to Constructing Excellence. Peter is a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Constructors, and has recently become a Member of the Council of Ulster University. 



Francesca Berriman MBE LLB(Hons) HonDTech FRSA

Chief Executive, Chartered Institute of Architectural Technologists

Francesca became the CEO of the Chartered Institute of Architectural Technologists (CIAT) in 1995. She has over 20 years of experience working within the architectural technology discipline and also has a legal background. Some of her many successful achievements include attaining Royal Charter status of CIAT in 2005. She has also held the role of Vice Chairman for the Society of the Environment and for the Construction Industry Council (CIC), of which she is still actively involved. Francesca was made an MBE in Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s 2012 Birthday Honours, for services to the architectural technology profession. In 2014 she was awarded an Honary Doctorate of Technology from Southampton Solent University and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.


Ashley Pocock, FIET

Head of Industry, Regulation and External Affairs, EDF Energy

Ashley is currently the Head of Industry, Regulation and External Affairs for Smart Metering at EDF Energy, and has held this role since 2012, previously leading EDF Energy's Home Technology Programme from 2006. These roles have given him an in-depth insight into the development of UK smart energy related policies and helped him play a key role in shaping the delivery of the Smart Meter role out to all UK customers for both gas and electricity services. His many roles include chairing The Application Home Initiative (TAHI), which sought to encourage the take-up of connected home technology by the adoption of ‘open architecture’ to enable interoperability between devices and applications. He was also the Chair of the Smart Homes and Building Association (SH&BA), the Smart Energy Special Interest Group (SESIG), and the Energy Management and Sustainability Industry Sector Groups (EMS); as well as a member of the Smart Grid Forum and a number of BEIS Smart Metering Governance Groups. With 38 years of experience in military, distributed control systems and energy metering and reporting, he is a leading voice within these groups and networks. Ash's particular areas of interest are emerging government policy and associated research related to energy applications in homes and buildings, including the link to the Internet of Things (IoT) and cyber security.


Professor Nick Jennings CB

Vice-Provost for Research at Imperial College.

Professor Nick Jennings, CB, FREng, is responsible for promoting, supporting and facilitating Imperial College London's research performance and for leading on the delivery of the Research Strategy. He also holds a chair in Artificial Intelligence in the Departments of Computing and Electrical and Electronic Engineering. Before joining Imperial College London, Professor Jennings was Regius Professor of Computer Science at the University of Southampton and the UK Government’s Chief Scientific Advisor for National Security. Professor Jennings is an internationally-recognized authority in the areas of artificial intelligence, autonomous systems, cybersecurity and agent-based computing.


Dr John Hooper

CEO of CABE (Chartered Association of Building Engineers)

John has held CEO and non-executive director roles across several not-for-profit organisations within the built environment. He brings particular skills in growing revenue, value and impact for members, and also extending outreach through publications and training. John’s technical expertise includes electrical engineering and energy systems. Due to his previous roles amongst large organisations such as Cadbury Schweppes and GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), he is part of a cross industry network.


Professor Jose Torero

Director of the Centre of Resilience, University of Maryland, USA

Jose is an internationally recognised professor and civil engineer with specific expertise in fire safety engineering. His previous role as BRE/RAEng Chair of Fire Safety Engineering at the University of Edinburgh, has given him an in-depth understanding of the BRE Trust requirements. Jose is a strong communicator both in academic and the wider fire safety communities and his extensive list of awards and prizes endorse this. This brings additional and complementing academic skills to the Trust and also enhances the fire engineering expertise.


Gary Wingrove

National Projects and Construction Director at BT Facilities Services Ltd

Gary oversees the delivery of all capital construction projects across the UK and Ireland. He has previously led the commercial and cost management team at UBS and prior to that was head of cost management for Morgan Stanley, advising on its Canary Wharf portfolio. Gary is vastly experienced and extremely well-connected. His already impressive portfolio also includes serving as President of the BCO (British Council for Offices), as well as being a fellow of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). Gary brings valuable expertise in agile working, workplace design, facility management, ICT and corporate management to the Trust.


Sam Stacey

‎Director of Innovation and Business Improvement at Skanska UK Plc

In 2011, Sam established Skanska UK’s Innovation Centre of Excellence to develop innovative solutions. The Centre supports business change and improvement to meet the needs of Skanska stakeholders, customers and delivery teams. He has over 20 years’ experience managing design and innovation in construction building on his background as a Chartered Structural Engineer and his MBA from Henley Business School (2010). During his previous roles at both the Wates Group and BuroHappold, he managed multi million pound projects, developing design solutions with the supply chain. He is also a senior visiting Research Fellow at Bath University’s department of Architecture and Engineering.


June Barnes

Formally CEO of East Thames Group

June initially trained as a town planner and is a member of the Chartered Institute of Housing. She was Chief Executive of the East Thames Group, a housing association, for over 16 years before retiring in September 2014. She has previously worked for a number of housing bodies focussing on housing development and regeneration, housing services and resident involvement. She chaired the London Sustainable Development Commission and more recently was a member of the London Mayor's Design Advisory Group. June is currently a Board Member of Urban and Civic plc.


Sir Ken Knight

Director of Ken Knight Consulting, former Chief Fire and Rescue Advisor for the UK Government

Sir Ken has over 50 years of experience within the Fire Engineering and Fire Management industry. He has numerous awards and qualifications and received his knighthood during the Queen’s Birthday Honours in 2006 in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the fire and rescue services. Sir Ken has also developed a wide network of associated organisations including DCLG, Capita, and Edge Hill University, at which he is a visiting professor. Sir Ken has also been appointed to several prestigious roles such as the Past Master of the Worshipful Company of Firefighters, as well as his role as Her Majesty’s Representative Deputy Lieutenant for Richmond upon Thames.