Appointments made to the Natural England Board

Extensions and reappointments of board members at Natural England, the government’s statutory advisor on nature conservation

Defra Ministers have reappointed Kim Shillinglaw and Peter Unwin and extended the appointments of Rosamund Blomfield-Smith and Kerry ten Kate as Natural England Board Members.

Kim Shillinglaw and Peter Unwin have been reappointed for a second term of three years from 1 June 2023 to 31 May 2026. Rosamund Blomfield-Smith and Kerry ten Kate’s appointments have been extended for nine months from 1 June 2023 to 29 February 2024.

Board members play an important role in providing leadership for the organisation, ensuring the delivery of Natural England’s mission to build partnerships for Nature recovery, in support of the Environmental Improvement Plan. This includes setting strategy and direction, agreeing objectives, overseeing performance and taking important decisions such as designations.

These appointments have all been made in accordance with the Governance Code on Public Appointments published by the Cabinet Office. All appointments are made on merit and political activity plays no part in the selection process.

Natural England plays a key role in delivering the government’s environmental priorities. Its purpose is to ensure the natural environment is conserved, enhanced and managed for the benefit of present and future generations.


Kate Shillinglaw

  • Kim has led the commercial transformation of businesses as Director of Factual at EndemolShine, modernised TV channels as Controller of BBC2 and BBC4, and initiated content from Stargazing Live to Blue Planet II as Head of Science and Natural History Commissioning.
  • She chaired the BBC’s Commercial Income and Factual Boards, advised organisations from the Royal Institution to the Science Museum and been a Trustee of NESTA and the Raspberry Pi Foundation. She is co-chair of the National Nature Reserves Steering Group.

Peter Unwin

  • Peter Unwin is an ex-civil servant with 10 years Board level experience as Director General at Defra and DCLG and a spell as acting Permanent Secretary at Defra. He worked across a wide range of policy areas, including the natural environment, climate change, agriculture, local government and planning.
  • After leaving the Civil Service in 2015 he spent four years as Chief Executive of the Whitehall & Industry Group, an independent charity promoting leadership development and understanding between government, industry and the not-for-profit sector.
  • Peter was awarded a CB for services to the environment in 2011 and is a member of the Aldersgate Group.

Rosamund Blomfield-Smith

  • Rosamund Blomfield-Smith spent 30 years in the City, latterly as a director of both Rothschilds and ING Barings, but since 2003 has been non-executive.
  • She has served on many boards, including Thames Water and Hartpury Agricultural College and was until recently chairman of Museum of London Archaeology and a member of Ofgem’s Challenge Group.
  • She is also a Trustee of the Jo Cox Foundation.

Kerry ten Kate

  • Kerry ten Kate is an independent consultant, advising governments, companies, banks and civil society organisations on how best to integrate the natural environment into economic decision-making.
  • She is a trustee of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, where she chairs the Conservation Committee and a non-executive board member at Finance Earth. She is a member of the Aldersgate Group and Conservation Fellow at the Zoological Society of London.
  • She is a former member of the Natural Capital Committee.

Natural England
Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs