Simon Jack
Broadcaster

Simon Jack, Business Editor, is taking on the role previously held by Robert Peston, Kamal Ahmed, and Jeff Randall. Popular for his approachable, easy style, Simon formerly covered the day’s business headlines for Radio 4’s Today and Breakfast News. After time spent as a corporate and investment banker in London, New York and Bermuda, Simon joined the broadcaster's Business and Economics unit. He reported for the Today programme and 5 Live's Wake up to Money. He also presented business and financial podcasts for the Daily Telegraph. Simon became familiar to TV viewers when he covered the 2008 financial crisis. He then replaced Declan Curry as the regular Breakfast business news reporter, and has co-hosted the show as a stand in for Bill Turnbull. Having interviewed some of the biggest names in UK and international commerce, covered the key events in business and the markets, and analysed the implications of policy and government, Simon has an insight few can rival. His down-to-earth style, humour, and occasional irreverence, make him perfect for explaining the complexities of economics and industry to both the expert and the layperson alike.

Venn Chesterton
Innovation Lead: ULEV
Innovate UK

Venn has just joined Innovate UK as the Ultra-Low Emission Vehicle (ULEV) Lead. He is looking forward to helping companies turn technology and business model concepts into successful product and service innovation that boosts the UK economy and deliver policy objectives such as improved air quality and reduced CO2 emissions. Prior to that he was the ULEV Lead at Transport Research laboratory, where he lead numerous projects including helping set up LoCITY. Before that Venn worked across the sustainable transport field at TfL. 

Neil Herron
Founder and CEO
Grid Smarter Cities

Neil Herron is the founder and CEO of Grid Smarter Cities - an eco-system of smart solutions connecting communities and people with transport, parking, goods, services, discounts and offers. It is about making lives easier for everyone and making cities smarter, efficient and inclusive. He has led Grid through the London Stock Exchange Group’s ELITE programme for emerging high-growth companies, as well as ensuring their 15th placing in the IP100 League table. Grid and Grid group companies have won a number of Innovate UK funded projects, including most recently a ‘first of a kind’ (FOAK) project looking to revolutionise the cities kerb-space with virtual loading bay concept, for which Neil is the named inventor, including the two patents that sit behind the technology. He is a serial entrepreneur developing new propositions and SME businesses in the smart city space. He is also ITS UK representative on the national British Parking Association Forum alongside the national bodies such as the Freight Transport and Road Haulage Associations, RAC Foundation and the AA as well as local authority representatives. He is a member of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Smart Cities. Neil spent 20 years’ experience in running delivery fleets and retail operations and has over ten years’ experience in influencing and improving parking policy and operations. He was a contributor to the Transport Data Revolution report on Intelligent Mobility for the Transport Systems Catapult and has a number of published articles on the subject of smart cities and the transport revolution.

Matt Key
Chief of Business Development
Arrival

Matt has been enabling business through the innovative use of technology throughout his career.  He has successfully transformed how businesses approach the market and enabled the creation of repeatable and sophisticated services whilst bringing in many new clients. Prior to Arrival he ran the Global IoT Business for Vodafone and before led the Enterprise division in Cable & Wireless Worldwide. Other experience includes working for Siemens IT Solutions and Services, Capita and Barclays.

Paul Blacklock
Head of Strategy and Corporate Affairs
Calor Gas

Paul Blacklock graduated from the University of Wales (Swansea) with a degree in geography, having majored in climatology. He joined Calor in 1985 and since then has held a number of different senior roles in both the UK and overseas - mainly in marketing and sales. In 2009 he was appointed as Calor's Head of Strategy and Corporate Affairs based at their headquarters in Warwick. Paul is a board member of the Low Carbon Vehicle Partnership and UKLPG. Calor was first established in 1935 and supplies a significant amount of gas (LPG and LNG) for use in transport – cars, vans, fork lift trucks and HGVs. LPG offers significant environmental benefits both in terms of improving air quality and reducing carbon emissions. Calor will be launching bioLPG on to the UK market in 2018.

Sam Clarke
Co-Director
Gnewt Cargo

Sam is co-director of Gnewt Cargo; a last-mile logistics provider that utilises a fully electric fleet of over 100 vehicles. Gnewt Cargo began – with Clarke’s business partner Matthew Linnecar - as an angel investor-backed start-up in 2009, and in November 2014 DX Group acquired a 49.8% stake in the business. In that time the business has grown from five people to over 100 employees. Last year it delivered over three million parcels throughout central London, and is looking to expand nationally in the coming years.

Alex Williams
Director of City Planning at Transport for London
Transport for London

Alex is the Director of City Planning at Transport for London. His responsibilities are working with the Mayor to develop/deliver his Transport Strategy for London; develop and gain powers for major infrastructure projects such as tube extensions/new river crossings; provide transport advice on Land Use Planning applications referable to the Mayor; manage relationship with London Boroughs; ensure work is underpinned by a robust evidence base through modelling and analysis. Alex was formally appointed to the post in April 2017 having held it on an interim basis since April 2016.  Before that he was Director of Borough Planning (from 2007). Prior to TfL he worked in London Borough of Camden and London Borough of Ealing.

Denise Beedell
Development Manager
Federation of Small Business (FSB)

Denise Beedell is the Development Manager for the Federation of Small Business (FSB) covering Greater London. She is responsible for campaigns and developing the work and growth of FSB in the Greater London region, ensuring that the interests of its members are represented, through advocacy, media, research, member support and recruitment. She leads on crime, environment and transport matters affecting London’s small and micro business community.

Jim Chappell
Freight and Fleet Lead
TRL

Jim Chappell is a specialist transport and logistics consultant with a strong record in the management and delivery of efficiency and environmental focused programmes and projects. His experience is built on a solid foundation of transport and supply chain operational management in both the public and private sectors.  His background includes operational management of freight transport at depot and regional level; with responsibilities that included auditing transport operations for legal compliance and operational efficiency and the application of efficient fuel management. He has worked closely in the management and delivery of driver training and testing including the roll out of the Driver Certificate of Professional Competence. Jim has operational experience in crises response including leading regional logistic response during the 2001 UK Foot and Mouth Crises.  As a consultant, Jim has managed a variety of programmes and projects and is Programme Manager of the ECO Stars (Efficient Cleaner Operations) Fleet Recognition Scheme an efficiency and environmental based programme which provides commercial vehicle fleet operators with an operational fuel management assessment and action plan based on industry good practice.

James Hookham
Deputy Chief Executive
Freight Transport Association

James Hookham is Deputy Chief Executive of the Freight Transport Association, the UK’s largest trade association serving the needs of the freight and logistics sectors. James has worked at FTA for over 25 years and has served as its Policy Director for most of that time, leading the FTA response on issues such as fuel duty, operator licensing and social legislation and the development of many new initiatives at FTA, including the popular Transport Manager conferences and FTA’s accreditation marques, Van and Truck Excellence. James is currently responsible for FTA’s Global and European policy team, leading FTA’s response to Brexit and establishing new networks for FTA members through the creation of the Global Shippers’ Forum and its membership of the European Shippers’ Council. He is FTA’s chief spokesperson and is a frequent commentator on TV and radio and in press coverage. James is married and lives in Kent. He is a graduate in Environmental Science from the University of Bradford, studied the safe transport of dangerous goods at the University of Manchester and reckons that Steely Dan are the best rock and roll band in the world.

Ross Paterson
Head of Product and Marketing
Mercedes-Benz Trucks

Ross has worked within the truck industry since leaving school some 28 years ago. His career commenced in a Mercedes-Benz truck dealership learning the trade and becoming a qualified technician. He joined Mercedes-Benz Head Office in 1997 where he has held a number of roles including Technical Support, Key Account Management in both Sales and After Sales roles. More recently he has been appointed to head up a new Product & Marketing dept with a team comprising of Product Managers, Marketers, Events and PR. He is married with two teenagers and his main interest outside of work is motorcycles. 

Ryan White
Assistant Vice President
New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC)

Ryan White is an Assistant Vice President in the Planning, Development, and Transportation Division at the New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC). At EDC, Ryan leads city-wide freight initiatives, including FreightNYC, a comprehensive, multimodal strategy to modernize and optimize goods movement in the City’s five boroughs.  Ryan received his Master of Urban Planning Degree from New York University, and holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Political Science from Santa Clara University. Prior to joining EDC Ryan worked for a shipping and relocation company in Beijing, China.

Matt Hague
Executive Director – Product Strategy
Microlise

Matt joined Microlise in 1998 with the responsibility inproving Microlise’s Product design and activities. Growing beyond his role, Matt is behind the creation of the Microlise Telematics & Transport Management solution which now has more than 250,000 active vehicle connections worldwide. As Microlise has grown, Matt has taken on a more strategic role and is now responsible for Microlise product strategy, marketing and consultancy.

James Backhouse
Director
Backhouse Jones

James Backhouse qualified as a solicitor in 1992 and began specialising in road transport law in 1994 when he joined the family practice which has specialised in transport law since 1930. James has been involved in two Article 177 references to the European Court of Justice, an Appeal to the House of Lords and numerous Court of Appeal and Divisional Court cases.  He has also been consulted in the process of vetting impending legislation dealing with aspects of road transport. The 2017 Chambers Guide regards James as a "top-notch" road regulatory lawyer, particularly in relation to contentious work.   He is described by sources as “a very good lawyer” who “knows his stuff”.  He frequently represents operator clients in Public Inquiries across the country and is held in high esteem for his skills in this arena.  Previous editions have quoted that he has “specific experience in road transport aspects of vehicle operation.” They also mention that he “has advised government appointed consultants regarding new regulations for motorway management and is widely respected as an authority on drivers’ hours, driver training and Working Time issues. When not defending operators, James enjoys sailing with his family.

Tony Bowen
LCV Project Manager
Brigade Electronics

Tony Bowen is Brigade Electronics LCV project manager and is currently focused on the issue of electric and quiet vehicles which pose a danger to vulnerable road users. Collaborating with the Quiet Road Transport Vehicles working group, Brigade will be launching a quiet vehicle sounder at the end of the year. Tony has extensive knowledge of vehicle manufacturers, suppliers, distributors and aftersales having worked for brands including Lotus, Mazda and Keir before he joined Brigade in 2009. 


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