A Focus On Nature

Committee

Elliot Newton

Creative Director.

Conservationist.
Naturalist.
Campaigner.

Elliot started his conservation career after founding the Kingston Biodiversity Network in his home town, then becoming a director within the Kingston Environment Centre and the Nature Conservation Manager for the Environment Trust. Elliot is involved with multiple conservation organisations; he is one of the founders of People for Pangolins, which supports and encourages projects and people across the globe to conserve Pangolins and is vice chair for youth engagement within the IUCN Pangolin Specialist Group. Elliot is also one the non- executive directors for Citizen Zoo, which hopes to encourage the general public to proactively engage with conservation. Elliot studied postgraduate courses within conservation, including a MSc in Conservation Science at Imperial College London. Being a young person in conservation, he recognises the importance of young people and challenges they can face. Elliot was honoured to be recruited to the AFON committee in early 2017, and strives to continue AFONs good work supporting and inspiring young conservationists.

Matt WilliamsMatt Williams

Associate Director (Campaigns & Engagement).

Communicator.
Photographer.
Naturalist.
Campaigner.

Matt Williams is a conservationist, nature writer and photographer. He has loved wildlife since the age of five and has spent his personal and professional life working to secure a flourishing natural world and safe climate for young people and future generations. Previously Co-Director of the UK Youth Climate Coalition, Matt became involved in AFON in 2012, and has since become one of its two Directors. He works for RSPB and has also spent a year living in the jungles of Borneo. Find out more @mattadamw and mattadamwilliams.co.uk.

 

Beth Aucott

Projects (University Birdwatch Challenge).

me

Practical Conservationist.
Artist.
Nature Writer.
Naturalist.

Beth’s love for our natural world stems from a childhood playing in fields and getting lost in tales about Tarka and the Animals of Farthing Wood. Studying MSci Zoology at the University of Nottingham gave her a better appreciation of the science and ecology behind nature conservation and she recently spent her time getting her hands dirty as a Practical Conservation Trainee with Somerset Wildlife Trust. She currently works for the National Trust in Bedfordshire. In her spare time Beth can often be found with a sketchbook in hand, as she finds the creativity of art another way to convey her passion for the natural world.

 

Peter CooperPeter Cooper

Projects.

Naturalist.
Environmental Journalist & Blogger.
Nature Writer.
Wildlife Photographer.

Peter is an amateur naturalist and nature writer, blogger & broadcaster. A graduate in Zoology and an MSc in Biodiversity & Conservation, both from the University of Exeter Penryn Campus, his specialist interests lie in mammals, herpetofauna, captive breeding/reintroductions and conservation conflicts. In both his spare time and university studies this has included designing and conducted surveys for mammals such as small mammals, otters and badgers, and assisting work to reintroduce water voles and beavers with the Derek Gow Consultancy & Cornwall Wildlife Trust. He has taken these interests into his role at AFON, running and creating projects such as the rewilding workshop and university mammal challenge. As a keen writer and broadcaster, he has a regularly updated blog and podcast (petecooperwildlife.com), and at the University of Exeter has previously edited the student nature magazine Life and presented the online series Naturewatch.

 

Simon PhelpsSimon Phelps

Projects (University Moth Challenge).

Wildlife Photographer.
Naturalist.
Professional Conservationist.
Community Engagement.

Simon is a conservationist, wildlife photographer, naturalist and writer. Over his 5 year career in conservation he has worked and volunteered for many conservation charities, such as Warwickshire Wildlife Trust, BCN Wildlife Trust, Froglife. He currently works for Butterfly Conservation as a project development officer. He was also a Young Champion on the 2020VISION wildlife photography project. He holds a BSc in Geography and an MSc in Applied Ecology and Conservation, where for the latter he spent 3 months in the Guyana rainforest studying dung beetles! Simon has an endless passion for the natural world, covering all species groups, but with a particular fondness for moths, butterflies, birds and dragonflies. To read some of his writing and see some of his photographs, visit his website: www.wildlifephelps.com

Ryan Clark

Membership Co-ordinator.

Naturalist.
Photographer.
Blogger.
Conservationist.

Ryan is an ecologist, conservationist and wildlife photographer. A lifelong wildlife recorder,  Ryan tries to record as many taxonomic groups as he can identify, but his main passions are for plants and pollinators. He has now recorded around 2200 species in Britain and tries to identify every species he comes across. Ryan works as WILDside Project Coordinator for Northamptonshire’s Biodiversity Records Centre, where he is supporting and training others to record wildlife. He also uses his blog and Twitter (@RyanClarkNature) to do the same. An active member of the Botanical Society of Britain and Ireland, Ryan sits on their Meetings and Communications Committee and is the co-ordination of their New Year Plant Hunt. He is also a keen wildlife photographer and has won awards for his work.

 

Ben Eagle

Administrator.

Conservationist.
Communicator.
Writer.

Ben is an environmental and agricultural writer based in Essex. He has written for The Guardian, Rewilding Britain and the Sustainable Food Trust, among others, and is the Conservation Editor for Farmland Magazine. Ben’s interests cover a broad spectrum of issues from food and farming to conservation, rewilding, environmental history, soils and community resilience. He has previously worked for Essex Wildlife Trust, managed projects for Bristol University and the National Trust and volunteered for a range of organisations including Avon Wildlife Trust, Bristol University Conservation Group and Bristol City Council. He now works for his family’s mixed coastal farm as well as writing for a range of publications. In 2015 he published his first book – ‘Pushed to the Edge: A History of the Naze and Walton Hall’. Ben blogs regularly at his website ‘thinkingcountry.com’ and produces and presents a regular podcast called Meet the Farmers.

 

Charley Miller

Mentoring Coordinator.

Conservationist.
Communicator.
Educator.
Explorer.

Charley joined the AFON committee in March 2017. She works as a Community Wildlife Assistant with Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire Wildlife Trust (BBOWT) and an Engagement Tutor with the Earth Trust. These roles primarily involve leading children and adults in fun and educational nature-based activities. Charley has personally experienced how challenging it can be to start a career in nature conservation and is keen to help individuals starting out their journeys. She grew up in Devon and has always loved being outdoors and exploring. After graduating from the University of Sussex in 2011 with a BSc degree in Geography, Charley began volunteering in practical conservation land management. She volunteered with many different organisations over the years, including East Sussex County Council, the National Trust, Butterfly Conservation, Plymouth Woodland Project, The Conservation Volunteers and Devon Wildlife Trust. After focusing on practical work for about four years, she moved into community engagement. Charley worked in Lancashire Wildlife Trust’s Education team in 2016 before moving back down south. Helping all people connect with the natural world and improving inclusivity in conservation are Charley’s main passions. Find out what Charley’s currently up to by following her on Twitter @CharleyMillerCM

Alexandra Hoadley

Online and Social Media Manager.

Nature writer.
Naturalist.
Photographer.

Alexandra Hoadley is a nature writer, naturalist, photographer and musician. She is studying for BA Geography and English at the University of Exeter, Cornwall Campus. At university she has joined the committee of Life Magazine, as columnist and Arts Editor, interned in the Geography department, is Nature Editor for The Falmouth Anchor, and has just joined NatureWatch as a presenter and committee member. Before university she volunteered at RSPB Minsmere for over a year, working across the reserve in education, habitat management and conducting species surveys. Most of her experience came in the media department, where she presented two Nature-Minute videos as part of Springwatch 2015, and broadcast regularly on BBC Radio Suffolk. A keen writer, she has previously written for organisations such as RSPB Suffolk, Cornwall Wildlife Trust, New Nature and AFON. Find out more on Twitter @AKHoadley and check out her blog https://alexandrahoadley.wordpress.com/.

Andreas Fopp

Vision for Nature Campaigner

Environmentalist.
Aspiring Photographer.

Andreas Fopp is an environmentalist and aspiring photographer (though first he needs a camera – anyone?). His appreciation for wildlife dates back to growing up in the Pacific Northwest and he’s often reminded of spending many a waking hour playing in the woods of Oberursel, Germany as a young boy. Intrigued by the world of public and climate policy, he’s currently engaged in a BSc studying Environmental Geography and International Development at the University of East Anglia. Joining AFON in April 2017, this is his first venture into the world of UK conservation and nature, which he hopes to make a more harmonious and interconnected one. Follow his musings (alongside the occasional baseball-related tweet) @MoreBlueSocks.