IWA – Departure of Canal & River Trust Chief Executive “Passing of an Era”

Issue date: 9th January 2013

IWA said that news that Robin Evans, chief executive of the newly formed waterways charity Canal & River Trust , is to step down in May, marked the “passing of an era for the waterways”. IWA was, however, keen to stress its belief in the vital importance of getting the right successor, and of the need to continue to work to secure the culture change necessary for a modern customer-focussed third sector organisation.

Speaking on behalf of IWA, Les Etheridge, national chairman, said:

“‘Robin’s announcement very much marks ‘the passing of an era for the waterways’.

He has steered the former British Waterways, for ten years, through some of the most severe and testing economic times, and has managed a successful transfer to the third sector with the formation of Canal & River Trust, complete with a dowry of a 15-year stable funding settlement from government, something that, in time, will be seen to be both visionary and unprecedented.

As chief executive of a large organisation providing a public service, he has often had to bear the brunt of managing high public expectations, whilst having to constantly manage wholesale internal reorganisations as a result of annual budget cuts from government. No one in business would envy him, and the fact that the Trust exists today is testament to his vision, strength and determination.

We wish him well for the future, and look forward with interest as to who will be his successor at Canal & River Trust. It is a very difficult role to fill and will need someone with the ability to manage the operational business needs, and to additionally drive the transition to secure the culture change necessary for a modern customer-focussed third sector organisation.”