Inspiring Learning

Our People

Meet our Leadership Team! We’ve spent some time getting to know them, finding out what makes them tick and getting some insight into what inspired them to join Inspiring Learning and Kingswood. We even managed to dig out a couple of childhood photos too...

Martin Robinson, Chairman

I have always been a great believer in the benefits of having an outstanding education and believe this only to be possible if the theory of the classroom is supported by learning outside the school environment. I’ve always wanted to play a part in the development of the education system in the UK and taking it beyond the production of A* pupils. My role here, therefore, finally enables me to make my own small contribution to the world of learning.

"The outcome focused nature of a Kingswood residential, which can be taken in one of our unique locations, really enables all abilities to shine and gives young people skills for life."


The quote I find most inspiring is...

"Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference." - Winston Churchill

My biggest passions outside of work are football, keeping fit and music.

My favourite activity is leap of faith!

My career history alongside Kingswood and Inspiring Learning, I am currently also Chairman of Park Dean Resorts, Causal Dining Group and Burger King UK. I have previously been Chairman of Center Parcs, Wagamama and Holmes Place and have been on the boards of Disneyland Paris, Scottish & Newcastle Retail, Regus PLC and Perry Motor Group.

When I was 11 I wanted to be…playing lead guitar in a punk band whilst playing on the wing for the England football team.

Tim Gibson, Chief Executive Officer

I am passionate about enabling young people to discover new skills and equipping them with the ability to build and develop friendships in an inspiring learning environment. I believe that the exceptional experience we provide deserves to be available to as many young people from across the world as possible. I love what the business stands for: inspiring young people and enabling them to develop skills in teamwork, leadership and independence.

"I am deeply passionate about positively influencing the lives of today's young people - helping them build confidence and encouraging them to believe in themselves."


The quote I find most inspiring is...

"If you take care of your team they will take care of your customers and your business will take care of itself." - JW Marriot

My most inspiring learning experience was backpacking through Asia, meeting new people, experiencing new cultures and enjoying a huge sense of freedom!

My career history I’ve previously worked at a variety of travel and leisure companies including Haven Holidays, Harvester Restaurants and B&Q.

My favourite destination is Marlborough Sounds, a stunning collection of sunken valleys and woodland in my home country, New Zealand.

When I was 11 I wanted to be…a racing car driver.

Charlie McLean, Chief Financial Officer

I have two young daughters and I have seen first-hand how important a well-balanced education is to their development as confident young girls who have the courage to take on new things. Outdoor residential centres have been an important element of this and I have always enjoyed hearing their delight when they have overcome and conquered their fears. We aim to bring out the best in everyone through active learning and this has to be a good thing for our nation's young people.

"Our passion around the educational outcomes, and the staff we attract as a result, complements the really fun elements of outdoor adventure."


The quote I find most inspiring is...

‘Work hard, play hard and be kind.’ - It’s not a quote as such but I say it to my girls each morning before school, plus it applies equally to adults!

My most inspiring learning experience was a year working and living in the USA on a number of kids camps including teaching basketball.

My biggest passions outside of work are my wife and kids; my hobbies including mountain biking and skiing; and being part of the local community where I have lived for almost 20 years.

My career history I have been in the restaurant industry for over 15 years, this business has many similarities, although zip wiring was never included!

When I was 11 I wanted to be… I was always interested in business in general, and later my finance qualification after my degree helped me get started in the business world. 

Carl Howells, Operations Director

Most people remember their school residential trip, it’s a big deal for a young person when they stay away from home for the first time, experiencing new things, having a taste of independence and learning new and adventurous skills. It's exciting and rewarding to be able to deliver these experiences for young people at a range of unique locations, and coupled with the a real educational edge to our residential experiences, we really stand out from the crowd.
"Playing a part in delivering rewarding experiences is a real privilege, because it’s not just about thrilling activities, there is also a real educational edge."

The quote I find most inspiring is...

"Those who dare to fail miserably can achieve greatly." - John F Kennedy

My biggest passions outside of work are (apart from my family of course) music, Rioja wine and keeping fit in the gym.

My favourite activity is anything on the water, especially canoeing or kayaking, something active where you can play team games.

My career history before joining the company I worked for David Lloyd Clubs, the health and fitness chain.

When I was 11 I wanted to be…a doctor. Although I soon realised I didn’t like the sight of blood!

Danni Rush, Chief Customer Officer

I am delighted to be part of the Kingswood team. I have always been lucky to work for businesses that have an inspirational purpose and a vision to help people make memories. Inspiring Learning and Kingswood are no different for me. I spent many years as a child on both Kingswood and Local Authority sites and I look back on those times with such amazing memories. Being able to help create those memories for children, like my own, is definitely both a career and personal high.

"I enjoyed residentials as a child and have such amazing memories. Being able to help create those memories for others is definitely a career and personal high."


My favourite quote is...

"Don’t worry about failures, worry about the chances you miss when you don’t even try." - Jack Canfield

My favourite activity is campfire. Building it and then lighting it and enjoying some marshmallows and hot chocolate, songs and games. It brings back amazing memories of when I visited Kingswood as a child.

My favourite destination is The Seychelles, the perfect mixture of sea, natural beauty and wild animals.

My career history I’ve previously been part of the team at a range of companies including Mothercare, The Early Learning Centre, Haven Holidays and Make It Cheaper.

When I was 11 I wanted to be…a vet, until my pet got poorly!

Jerry Brennan, Corporate Development Director

I am a big believer in Kingswood’s Theory of Change, plus the care of our team and our focus on development. I attended an outdoor education centre for several days when I was 12 years old near where I grew up in Connecticut, USA. The experience of being away from home and being challenged with high rope activities, obstacle courses and all of the other adventures that were made available provided me with an important sense of independence and a boost to my self-confidence.

"I am pleased to be working with the team to expand our geographical reach so that we can provide important life experiences to as many young people as possible."


The quote I find most inspiring is...

“You can’t start a fire without a spark.” - Bruce Springsteen

My biggest passions outside of work are my family and friends, sport and fitness, and listening to music.

My favourite activity is leap of faith!

My most inspiring learning experience was the challenge of being a grass-roots football coach for a group of under 9’s, which offers me many learning opportunities!

When I was 11 I wanted to be…a professional baseball player.

Neal Young, People Director

I have always been passionate about how sport and outdoor activities can help young people develop and grow, having seen it first-hand many years ago as a Youth Group Leader and more recently as a DofE Expedition Assessor. I continually enjoy supporting, encouraging and seeing how such experiences can provide so much enjoyment and sense of achievement. I am so proud of the experiences that our young guests enjoy which are centred on an integrated approach between outdoor experiences and learning outcomes.

"I am inspired every day by the incredible and at times, life changing experiences that our young guests enjoy and the learning outcomes they provide."


The quote I find most inspiring is...

‘Always look on the bright side of life.’ 

My biggest passions outside of work are rugby, my family, and pop art.

My most inspiring learning experience was joint facilitating workshops with Dave Francis, author of Improving Working Groups.

My career history I’ve worked with a range of companies such as Nandos, The Gala Coral Group, CCC Events, The Savoy Group, Open University, GVC & Wagamama‎.

When I was 11 I wanted to be…a helicopter pilot.