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Welcome New Board Members

Thursday, 9th June 2016

Championing Lancashire as a place to live, work, study and invest in, as well as being one of the UK’s top visitor destinations is Marketing Lancashire’s mission.

The organisation leads the charge in placing Lancashire front and centre on the national and international stage showcasing its strengths and assets to attract more interest and investment. Key to Marketing Lancashire’s success is partnership; working with both the public and private sectors to build a world class future for the county. Over 63 million people choose to take their short breaks and days out in Lancashire, our universities are amongst the best in the country and manufacturing, aerospace and Lancashire’s food and drink industries are without doubt, some of the UK’s most innovative and successful. 

Marketing Lancashire this week announced the appointment of four new non-executive board directors from the private sector, who will play a key role in the strategic direction of Marketing Lancashire and the realisation of the company’s ambitions for the county.

The new directors are: James Allison, Partner at Napthens, Head of Real Estate Division; Craig Bancroft, Joint Managing Director of Northcote Leisure Group Ltd; Anna Doran, General Manager Anglo-Scottish route Virgin Trains; Clive Drinkwater, Regional Director UKTI NW.

The new directors now give the Board a full complement of skills and experience across key sectors, from both public and private sector.

Chair of the Board of Directors, Tony Attard OBE said

“I am delighted to welcome such an impressive group of experts to the board of Marketing Lancashire. Building a strong and skillful board is one of the great pleasures of being Chair and I look forward to the great contribution I know each will make to the greater success of Lancashire.”

Ruth Connor, Chief Executive of Marketing Lancashire, added “I am looking forward to working more closely with James, Craig, Anna and Clive as we launch the new Lancashire narrative to promote Lancashire with a strong, confident, unified voice that encourages and supports greater investment and interest in this wonderful county. 

“Each of these individuals, all leaders in their field, brings excellence and passion for county-wide success to the table and we’re thrilled to have them on the board.”

James Allison is a Partner and Head of Real Estate Division at north-west law firm Napthens, with responsibility for managing departments including commercial property, construction, rural business and leisure & licensing.  A member of the firm’s Executive Board, he is involved in the development and implementation of Napthens’ strategic plan.  

Craig Bancroft is Joint Managing Director of Northcote Leisure Group Ltd. He was the youngest general manager of a hotel when he landed the role of General Manager at Northcote at just 23, and it was here that his passion for pairing interesting wines with Nigel’s honest, seasonal British cuisine took off. The duo was awarded a Michelin star in 1996, making them the only manager and chef to collect the award together. Passionate about all things vine, Craig has spent the last 29 years developing Northcote’s award-winning wine cellar – now home to an impressive 600-plus bins from around the world. In 2010 Craig entered The Academy of Food and Wine Hall of Fame and was appointed a Master Innholder.

Anna Doran has worked in the rail industry for the last 22 years. She has been with Virgin Trains from the very beginning and throughout her time has held a variety of roles, which include leading the customer service strategy, contract management and Head of Sales. In January 2015 Anna started her current role as General Manager of the Anglo-Scottish route for Virgin Trains, which runs through the heart of Lancashire.

Clive Drinkwater was appointed Regional Director of UKTI North West in 2006.  Based at UKTI’s Daresbury office, he is responsible for helping the North West to develop its international businesses, to grow the number of firms exporting, increasing the region’s presence in the high growth markets of the world and attracting the highest quality investment to the region. 

Picture shows: New non-executive board directors, Marketing Lancashire LtoR: Clive Drinkwater, James Allison, Anna Doran and Craig Bancroft.


For Media enquiries please contact:

Anna Izza, Head of PR and Communications   01772 426 459

Laura Crabb, PR and Communications Executive 01772 426 456


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For more information, practical advice and support, call Marketing Lancashire on:

01772 426450.