Welsh Council Executive Committee

Chris Hodgson


Chris is a committed walker, walking in all parts of Wales and covering more than 1000 miles every year. His walking has led him to take a great interest in the condition of our paths, and in their improvement, and in encouraging other people to experience the joy of walking. Chris feels the Ramblers is the organisation to achieve these things. His work as Treasurer of Ceredigion Area and Membership Manager of the Aberystwyth Group gives him a good insight into two important areas of the work of the Ramblers. After serving for three years on the Welsh Council Executive Committee he feels there is still much to do and his contributions to the Committee can help Ramblers Cymru further enhance itself as an organisation working for walkers.

George Allingham
Vice Chair

George is a solicitor and family mediator.  He is currently chairman of Pembrokeshire Ramblers and sits as vice chair on the Pembrokeshire Local Access Forum.  A former community council chairman for over 10 years, a former member of the Pembrokeshire County Council Standards Committee and secretary and chairman of various business orientated organisations means that he has led or supported a wide ranging variety of teams.

George joined Ramblers 30 years ago, in 1989, to support its charitable objectives, rather than a walking club membership, and his group walking experience in Pembrokeshire took off in 2009 with the innovation of the pub debrief; and he is a walk leader, including at the Big Welsh Walk in 2018.

John Cook

John retired from the Water Industry after 38 years working as an accountant in the UK and overseas. John and his wife are now taking life a little easier after over 14 years  back in Wales.
John has previously held a number of roles in his group and area but now is only Treasurer of the Welsh Council Executive Committee.

Stan Winstanley

Stan has been a member of the RA since the early 1960's.  For years he led walks. He helped Tony Drake research what would  become the Cambrian Way. Stan has been an elected member of the Local Access Forum in Gwynedd since 2000. He was Deputy chair for 3 years. He has been a member of the RA Wales Executive since  2014.

As a Senior Manager in the Probation service he spent 15 years setting up and managing an outdoor activity centre for Merseyside Probation Service .
In the 2 decades since retiring Stan Has been  a Director of a North Wales social enterprise environmental centre  . He was Chair of their Board for 3 years steering  the organisation through complex negotiations with the Welsh Assembly government to create  a survival strategy.  He has become a governor of Walton Centre National Health Service Foundation Trust since early 2018.  

Elwyn Williams

Elwyn is chair of the Clwydian Ramblers and has led walks for HF Holidays in the UK and abroad for a number of years. In the past he worked in Public Health in the NHS and was a lecturer on the MSc programme for Bangor and Wrexham universities and on undergraduate courses for the Open universities. He presently lives in Mold but was brought up in the Bangor area where he developed his love of the mountains.

Gwenda Fitzpatrick

Gwenda has been a member of the Vale of Glamorgan Ramblers for 20 years, and volunteered as the group's publicity officer for 15 years.  A North Walian at heart, having being bought up in the Conwy Valley. Gwenda is a Welsh speaker, committed to seeing Ramblers Cymru grow in strength and fulfilling Wales' ambition to lead in promoting walking and making it accessible to all.  She currently lives in the Vale of Glamorgan, enjoying the countryside and the beautiful coastal walking opportunities available locally.

Co-opted members

Dr Ruth Hussey 

Ruth retired as Chief Medical Officer for Wales in 2016 after a career in Public Health. Brought up on a farm in north Wales, she has a keen interest in health and wellbeing, food, walking and the environment (including growing her own food on an allotment). She is Hon President of Ramblers in the north Wales area.

Ruth now advises on public health and health policy with a particular interest in tackling health inequalities. She is a Board member of the Food Standards Agency; a Governor of the Health Foundation; and trustee of The Reader Organisation. 

Rob Owen

Although originally from Anglesey, Rob now lives in the Vale of Glamorgan, where he enjoys exploring the network of paths and discovering more about the area’s rich history and wildlife. 
Through his professional career, which started as the Coastal Project Officer on Anglesey, Rob has been involved in encouraging more people to access and enjoy Wales fantastic countryside and coast. During his time with the Countryside Council for Wales Rob led on the development of the Wales Coast Path, a landmark achievement for a small nation. 

In joining the Welsh Executive Council Rob hopes that his experience and knowledge will benefit Ramblers Cymru in encouraging the sort of transformational change which will lead to more and more people regarding walking as part of their every day lives, fostering new social networks and a deeper understanding and appreciation of Wales’ beauty and heritage.

Will Renwick

In 2013, Ramblers Cymru's President, Will, walked 1,000-miles around the edge of Wales on a solo journey that started and finished at his front door in the village of Llancarfan. Since that epic adventure he's gone on to hike Glyndŵr's Way, the Snowdonia Slate Trail and the Cambrian Way from Conwy to Cardiff. 

When he's not hiking, he's writing about it instead – for magazines like Walk, The Great Outdoors, and Outdoors Magic which he currently edits. 

Denis McAteer
Vice president

Over the years Denis has served as Group (Caernarfon & Dwyfor), Area (North Wales), and Ramblers Cymru Chair and has also served as our previous President.  He has been a Ramblers member for more years than he can recall and has led many walks in the mountains and around the coastline of North Wales.
During a varied career he has worked as a civil servant, in telecommunications, the construction industry, overseas and in further education colleges where his final position was as College Principal.  Whilst resident in North Wales he served for ten years as a member of the Snowdonia National Park Authority and for eight years was on a Local Health Board where, though a lay member, he was Vice-Chairman.

He is currently a Ramblers Cymru Vice-President and is a member of the North Snowdonia LAF.  He has a particular interest in the benefit of walking for health.  

Sir Richard Lloyd Jones
Vice president

Richard stepped down as President of Ramblers Cymru in 2011. He had been President since 1993 and he also celebrated 30 years of membership of the Ramblers in 2011. He was Permanent Secretary, Welsh Office, 1985–93 and Chairman, Arts Council of Wales, 1994–99

Huw Irranca-Davies
Vice president

Huw has previously worked in private sector management and he returned to education as a lecturer at Swansea Institute of Higher Education. He became an MP in 2002, representing the proud constituency of Ogmore. On 29 June 2007, He was appointed Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Wales, before being promoted to the role of Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State in the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. He is also President of the Glamorgan Area Ramblers.

Ron Williams
Vice president

Ron lives in Holywell and is a keen countryside walker. He is a member of the Denbighshire Local Access Forum and of the Clwydian Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) Joint Advisory Committee. He is a retired economics teacher and sings in a male voice choir.

Max Grant
Vice president