Route Panels

There are 15 sector-based Route panels of industry experts and assessment experts who review and make considered determinations on whether or not to approve new or revised apprenticeship standards and assessment plans. They bring a strategic perspective across each route. The Route Panels convened when needed for the review of proposed standards and assessment plans. Their recommendations feed into the Approval and Funding Committee via the Executive.

 Agriculture, Environmental & Animal Care

Route contact details: email

Route Panel Chair: Richard Self

Small Holding Farmer and Agricultural Consultant

After starting his career as an apprentice agricultural engineer and then agricultural technician, Richard moved into training and education in the 1980s, managing a land-based skills private training company. He then moved into a senior management role within a land-based college of further education and was also an Associate Inspector with the Adult Learning Inspectorate for four years.

Richard developed a successful track record in developing and managing business partnerships within the agricultural sector and has experience of managing large and complex training and business development projects with a wide range of stakeholders. He also maintains a very practical knowledge of farming and arable crop production as he runs a small family farm.

Over the last 12 years, Richard has moved into business advice and consultancy, specialising in collaborative business structures and company director training and development. For the past four years Richard has also been managing a major employer led project developing careers and apprenticeships within the agri-food sector. He is Chair of the New Anglia LEP Enterprise Adviser network, a member of the New Anglia LEP Skills Board and is a member of the national Agri-Skills forum.


  • Professor Quintin McKellar CBE, Vice Chancellor and Professor of Veterinary Science, University of Hertfordshire (Vice Chair)
  • Peter Danks, Director, Agricultural Environmentalist, Reading Agricultural Consultants
  • Martin Emmet, visiting lecturer to the School of Horticulture at Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, part-time Director of Binsted and Walberton Nurserys.
  • Andrew Counsell, recently retired Head of Duchy College, Equestrian Eventist
  • Dr Juliet Dukes, Senior Scientific Officer, RSPCA


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Business & Administration

Route contact details: email

Route Panel Chair: Andrew Ground

CEO & Co-founder, Tutorfair

Andrew co-founded Tutorfair, a website to help parents find great tutors.  He was previously Chief Commercial Officer of LOVEFILM, Managing Director of Homeserve, and Brand Marketing Director at Sainsbury’s.  He trained at Procter & Gamble after Cambridge University. In his spare time he has been a local Councillor and a school governor.


  • Kristin Watson, Director, Ernst & Young (Vice Chair)
  • Professor Philip Powell, Pro Vice-Master (Enterprise and Innovation) Executive Dean, and Professor of Management, Birkbeck, University of London
  • Andrea Lansbury, HR Director, Benefits Cosmetics, LVMH Group
  • Dr Jane Rand, Pro Vice-Chancellor: Academic
  • Barbara Gibbon, Media Consultant
  • SallyAnn Brookes, HR Director, 10x Banking
  • Christine McLean, Head of Profession Project Control, Amec Foster Wheeler

Care Services

Route contact details: email

Route Panel Chair: Sir Roger Singleton CBE

Safeguarding Consultant and member of the Independent Family Returns Panel

Sir Roger was chief executive of Barnardo's for 21 years and was awarded a knighthood for his services to children in 2005. From 2007-2012 he chaired the Independent Safeguarding Authority, a Home Office agency created to decide who should be statutorily barred from working with children and vulnerable adults because of the risk they posed to them. He was also the Government's Chief Adviser on the Safety of Children. Recently he has been the interim Managing Director of Lumos - an international charity founded by J K Rowling to end the unnecessary institutionalisation of children globally. Sir Roger currently has his own consultancy specialising in safeguarding. He is also a member of the Home Office Independent Families Returns Panel.

Safeguarding Consultant and member of the Independent Family Returns Panel


  • Lesley-Anne Alexander CBE, (Vice Chair)
  • Clair Davies, Principal, Appletree Treatment Centre
  • Amy McEvoy, Care Manager, Home Instead Senior Care
  • Martin Kelly OBE, Assistant Director Children and Families, North Yorkshire County Council

Catering and Hospitality 

Route contact details: email

Route Panel Chair: Alison Gilbert

Human Resources & Board Director, CH&Co

Alison is passionate about improving education standards in the hospitality sector and encouraging people, be that young, disadvantaged or just those that ‘don’t know’, about what a wonderful career you can have in her sector. Alison has strong links with industry, is a non-executive director for Springboard and has been an informal advisor to People 1st in regards the new trailblazer standards. She has experience chairing multi-employer and stakeholder committees both at Springboard and in a past role working with local government in Adult Education.

Alison also has responsibility for business & administrative functions, learning & development, payroll & benefits services and in the past IT.


  • John Williams MBE, Executive Chef, The Ritz Hotel
  • Lee Allsup, Executive Head Chef, University of Huddersfield
  • Professor David Foskett MBE, Associate, David Foskett Associates


Construction profile picture


Route contact details: email

Route Panel Chair: Tanja Smith

Technical Director, Gradon Architecture

Tanja works between the UK and Mongolia and so adaptability to change has become integral to her life and what she does. Over the years Tanja has worked in a number of diverse practices and is able to draw from this experience working on a number of significant urban regeneration and master planning projects, which has seen her play an advisory role in Mongolia’s national “Green City” initiative and BIM Mongolia. Tanja is also involved with NAWIC representing women in construction at regional committee level and is involved with CIAT as an assessor. She was the winner of the 2017 ‘Outstanding Woman in Construction’ award. 


  • Martin Dix, Chartered Engineer and Partner, Peter Brett Associates LLP (Vice chair)
  • Kevin McLoughlin MBE, Managing Director, K&M Decorating
  • Gavin Richardson, Managing Director, OPUS Building Services
  • Dominic Benoist, Executive Director at Benoist Associates
  • Ruth Devine, Owner and Director, SJD Electrical
  • Professor Mukesh Limbachiya, Head of School of Natural and Built Environment, Kingston University, Fellow of Institution of Civil Engineers and the Institute of Materials, Minerals & Mining
  • Joanna Vezey, head of talent, inclusion and social sustainability at Laing O’Rourke



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Creative and Design

Route contact details: email

Route Panel Chair: Iain Smith OBE

Film Producer, Applecross Productions

Iain has produced numerous films including: Mad Max: Fury Road; The A Team; Wanted; The Fountain; Children of Men; Alexander; Cold Mountain; Spy Game; Planet of the Apes; Entrapment; Seven Years in Tibet; The 5th Element; Mary Reilly; 1492-Conquest of Paradise; City of Joy; Killing Dad; Hearts of Fire; The Mission; The Frog Prince; The Killing Fields; Local Hero; and production managed Chariots of Fire’ and Deathwatch.

In 2005 he was awarded a BAFTA for Outstanding Achievement in Film and was made an OBE by the Queen in the 2008 New Year's Honours List for services to film. In 2011, Iain Smith was appointed Chair of the British Film Commission. He is a patron of the London Film School, Chair of the Film Skills Council and Chair of the UK Film Industry Training Board.


  • Vic Wade, Global Head of Training, Double Negative (Vice chair)
  • Kath Geraghty, Apprenticeships Manager, National Theatre
  • Courtnay McCleod, Director, Bauer Academy
  • Sophie Hicks, Managing Director/Architect, Sophie Hicks Architects
  • Roger Brown, Legal Editor, Commercial Driver Magazine
  • Sue Ridley, Director of Conservation and Collections Management, V&A
Digital profile picture


Route contact details: email

Route Panel Chair: Mark McClennon

Global CIO, Burberry



  • Adrian Cunliffe, Head of Technology for Insights at Hive (Vice Chair)
  • Vimal Kohli, former Chief Technical Officer, Lloyds of London
  • Erika Clegg, Co-founder, Executive Creative Director, Spring
  • Tom Morgan, Lead Strategy Consultant, Sparck
  • Rob Mettler, Director of Digital Business, PA Consulting
  • Dominic Gill, Apprenticeships Lead, Microsoft
  • Giselle Stewart, Head of Game Development, Ubisoft
  • Jo Morfee, Director, InnovateHer
  • Lisa Hamilton, Associate Director, Deloitte

Education and Childcare

Route contact details: email

Route Panel Chair: Mary Isherwood OBE

Headteacher, Camberwell Park Specialist Support School

Mary has always worked in the field of Special Education. She was a class teacher  in a special school in Lancashire for 10 years before moving on to hold middle and senior management posts in Rochdale LA and currently in Manchester LA. 

Mary has been headteacher of Camberwell Park Specialist Support School since September 2006. 

The school has been judged outstanding three times under her tenure, in 2010, 2013 and most recently in January 2018. 

Mary is an established National Leader of Education and her school is a National Support School. As such, Mary and members of her team offer support to other schools in challenging circumstances. 


  • Professor Jean-Noël Ezingeard, Deputy Vice Chancellor, Manchester Metropolitan University (Vice Chair)
  • Dr Lyn Trodd, Dean of the School of Education, University of Hertfordshire
  • Rachel Sandby-Thomas, Registrar, University of Warwick
  • Emma Harwood, Nursery Manager, Dandelion Education Nursery
  • Mary Murphy, Principal of Riverside Further Education College, Halton, Merseyside.
  • Dr Philip Smith, Executive Principal, Outwood Grange Academies
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Engineering and Manufacturing 

Route contact details: email

Route Panel Chair: Dr Graham Honeyman CBE

Chief Executive at Sheffield Forgemasters

Dr Graham joined Parsons Turbine Generators Limited in 1978 as a Research Metallurgist rising to Principal Engineer before joining Sheffield Forgemasters as Technical Director in 1988. He led a management buyout of the Company, turning around its fortunes and was appointed Chief Executive in 2005. At the IOD Director of the Year Awards in 2010, Graham was very proud to win the Global Director of the Year, Investing for Growth Award and Overall Director of the Year. Graham was awarded a CBE in 2008 and in 2012 Graham received the Bessemer Gold Medal. He was made an Honorary Doctor of Teesside University in 2013.


  • Ian Eva, Apprenticeship Manager, Jaguar Land Rover
  • Captain Michael Rose, Defence Engineering Champion, Royal Navy
  • Dr Brian Counter, Consultant Chartered Civil and Railway Engineer
  • John Warden, Director – Nuclear, SThree plc
  • Paul Roe, Technical Director, Vapour Trail Systems Ltd
  • Bob Barnes, Managing Director, Motortrade Consultants Ltd
  • Alan Gundle, Technical Director, Sensient Flavours Europe
  • Steve Tremlin, Global Head of Prototyping, Dyson
  • Priyanka Dhopade, Senior Research Associate, University of Oxford
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Hair and Beauty

Route contact details: email

Route Panel Chair: Suki Kalirai

Director, GKC Infocus Ltd and Qi Spa (Spa WMC Ltd)

Suki is a commercial and innovative CEO from a Fortune 500 business background which includes Unilever, Coca-Cola and United Biscuits. This is augmented with director and CEO roles for over 10 years with both charities/not for profit and private equity backed businesses. Suki has an energising and collaborative business development led style with very high IT and finance fluency. He nurtures teams to hit targets through his mentoring and leadership.


  • Rachel Halling, College Principal, Champney’s Beauty College (Vice Chair)
  • Tina Rook, Head of Education, Saks Hair & Beauty
  • Cathy Weston, National Director of Apprenticeships, Toni & Guy
  • Karine Jackson, Owner and Technical Director, Karine Jackson Hair
  • Rebecca O’Farrell, Training Director, Yorkshire College of Beauty

Health and Science

Route contact details: email

Route Panel Chair: Kirk Lower

National Lead for Apprenticeships, Talent for Care, Widening Participation & Volunteering, Health Education England

Kirk is a senior leader and executive director with strategic and operational experience stretching across local government, education and the NHS.
He had a successful career as a Human Resources Director and as an Assistant Principal in further and higher education and has specific expertise in employee relations, employment law and organisational development.
Kirk has additional senior experience managing estates, facilities and health & safety coupled with a period of time running his own manager training & consultancy business. He has also chaired of the East of England network of HR directors working in the NHS.
Currently the national lead for the design and implementation of NHS workforce development strategies, requiring extensive partnership building and multi-stakeholder engagement including close liaison with the Department of Health and the Department for Education.


  • Tara Dillon, Chief Executive Officer, CIMSPA
  • Colin Baines, Head of Technical Services, The University of Manchester
  • Dr Brian Lobb, Senior Partner, Blackburn Road Medical Centre
  • Anita Esser, Head of Wider Healthcare Teams Education, University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust
  • Angie Heilmann MBE, Director of Dental Nurse Education, Antwerp Dental Academy
  • Laura Brady-Locke, Business Manager, Pharma Development Safety Science, Roche Pharmaceuticals
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Legal, Finance and Accounting

Route contact details: email

Route Panel Chair: Mike Thompson

Director, Early Careers, Barclays

Mike is an experienced and recognised banking professional with twenty seven years’ service to Barclays Bank PLC, operating at a senior leadership and strategic level for the past 15 years. He is highly networked across the Banking and Financial Services sector, having excellent relationships with key sector stakeholders including BBA and professional bodies and was chair of the Financial Services Trailblazer Group for the last 4 years.

Mike was responsible for the creation and development of the award winning Barclays Apprenticeship Programme and is responsible for identifying and bringing in young talent into the various parts of his organisation. He helps create training programmes for these young people that allow them to have great careers and stretch and grow themselves as individuals.


  • Akhil Shah QC, Vice Chair, Fountain Court Chambers
  • Geri Baird, Director, Cheshire Costs Management
  • Anna Purchas, Partner, Interim Head of People, KPMG LLP
  • Jodie Hosmer, Principal Associate, Legal Services Team Manager, Mills and Reeve
  • Mark Handley, Redlands Retail Ltd


Protective Services

Route contact details: email

Route Panel Chair: Sir Jon Murphy

Former Chief Constable Merseyside Police & Professor of Advanced Policing Studies, Liverpool John Moores University

Sir Jon joined the police in 1975 as a 16-year-old cadet, rising through the ranks as a career detective. He was appointed Deputy Chief Constable of Merseyside in 2004, after working with the National Crime Squad and was the National Coordinator for organised crime from 2007 until he was appointed Chief Constable in January 2010. Jon retired from the police service in 2016.

Sir Jon has been commended on 14 occasions and was voted Merseyside Public Sector Leader of the Year by a local panel in 2014. He received the Queen's Police Medal in 2007 and was knighted in the 2014 Birthday Honours for services to policing.


  • Phil Garrigan, Deputy Chief Fire Officer, Merseyside Fire and Rescue (Vice Chair)
  • Danny Wilks OBE, Head of Recruitment, West Yorkshire Police
  • Brigadier David Neal, Marshall Provost, Royal Military Police
  • Chris Armitt, Assistant Chief Constable, Civil Nuclear Constabulary
  • Babafemi Dada, Governor, HM Prison Featherstone
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Sales, Marketing, Procurement

Route contact details: email

Route Panel Chair: Godfrey Moger

Station Director for Free Radio, Bauer Media

Godfrey has extensive experience and a track record of devising, implementing, supporting and delivering successful commercial transformation, across multiple business types and sectors. Having progressed from the sales floor to senior leadership roles in retail, coupled more recently with a successful transition to B2B leadership in telecoms, local media (in both print and digital) and digital advertising technology. He is passionate about developing individuals and teams and has a strong track record in building and developing sales teams on both a UK and international basis.


  • Lt Col (Retd) John Stroud-Turp, Conventional Weapons Policy Lead, UK’s Arms Control Directorate
  • Simon Johnson, Head of Region, Lawn Tennis Association
  • Bernie Segal as Vice Chair, European Partner, EY
  • Sarah Logan,  former Head of Marketing and Industry Partnerships, Google

  • Rachel Jones, Store Director, Tesco
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Transport and Logistics

Route contact details: email

Route Panel Chair: Michelle Nolan-McSweeney

Head of Training Strategy, Network Rail

Michelle is responsible for directing and setting Network Rail’s apprentice policy and skills strategy. This includes safety, technical and behavioural training interventions required across the organisation, and in support of the supply chain, and of the Railway industry.  Michelle also acts as the business interface with internal and external stakeholders, including Government departments, to support delivery of and subsequently report on, rail sector skills and apprenticeships.


  • Paul Richardson, Director of Innovation, DHL (Vice Chair)
  • Captain Neil Atkinson, Head of College, Fleetwood Nautical College
  • Mark Swan, Executive Director, Frimstone
  • Karima Khandker, Head, Heathrow Academy
  • David Coombes, Managing Director, Skills for Logistics