Rural Growth Board

Each programme area across Cheshire West and Chester is represented by a private sector-led Board who alongside a strategy steers the delivery of its regeneration and housing services in the coming years.  The Rural Growth Board acts as “enabler” to influence the way that the Council invests and supports the rural areas, and the businesses, residents and places within it.

The Rural Growth Board (originally named the Rural Regeneration Board) was set up in 2012 and plays an important part in steering the council on rural issues. The Board incorporates members from both the private and public sectors, providing a range of leadership, profile, experience and connections to implement the council’s vision.  To date the board has been focussed on the Rural Regeneration Strategy and Rural Housing Strategies adopted in 2011. These strategies were reviewed and updated during 2016.


Rev. Canon David Felix - Chair

David has worked for the Diocese of Chester for 28 years and has represented the Cheshire Church Leaders on the formerly Cheshire Local Strategic Partnership and Rural Recovery Board.  David was on the Rural Recovery Board and chaired the community sub-group and served on the Board of Cheshire Community Action for over 9 years.  He has also served on three parish councils.

Chris Brown-Bolton

Chris is Director of Development Enabling Ltd and has worked successfully on many major projects which include: Eturia Valley, Christ Church Willaston, New Heritage Regeneration, Darlaston Strategic Development Area, Live/Work Projects, Stoke Gateway Park, Broadway Plaza Birmingham and Knutsford Library where they have focussed, created challenges and added value.

Heather Hayes

Heather grew up in the market town of Frodsham.  She is CEO of Blue Orchid which is now one of the largest providers of business start-up support in the UK and assists with the set-up of more than 2,000 new businesses each year.  Working primarily with the unemployed Blue Orchid now provides self-employment support for DWP, local authorities, DCLG and nationally for the Royal British Legion.

Andrew Hull

Andrew lectured for many years in rural geography at both undergraduate and master’s level.  As an Emeritus Professor in Landscape Ecology Andrew is still active in research and has projects ongoing locally and in Europe.  Andrew’s principal focus is on the pond landscape of Cheshire and between 1995 and 1999 was seconded to manage the EU funded Pond Life Project.

Katrina Michel

Katrina is CEO for Marketing Cheshire and has had a wide ranging career including the Civil Service in the Foreign and Colonial Office, Americas desk. She accepted a request to move to Paris for a year with the FCO before taking up a new challenge with NATO.  Katrina speaks French and German and has a wealth of experience with marketing and advertising.

Matthew Morris

Matthew is the Estate Manager for the Bolesworth Estate and has previous experience of being part of the Northern Marches Leader funding panel and sat on the Chester Small Grants Panel. He has also been part of the Developers Planning Forum and his daily work brings him into contact with wide ranging issues including; social, economic and environmental factors.

Stuart Roberts

Stuart received formal training at Reaseheath College as a Livestock Auctioneer which gave him a sound commercial grounding to move forward with his own business as a farmer.  He has almost 40 years’ experience in farming and is Vice Chairman of the Milk Producers Group and Chairman of Cheshire Farms Competition Committee.

Meredydd David

Meredydd is Principal of Reaseheath College and has spent the majority of his career in agricultural and rural education.  A farmer’s son, he graduated from the Welsh Agricultural College in 1976 and started his career as a Lecturer Senior Warden at Carmarthenshire College in West Wales.  In 1996 Meredydd gained an MPhil in Soil Science on a part-time basis through research at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth.

Jonathan Fell

Jonathan Fell is Director of the award-winning ice cream business, Cheshire Farm Ice Cream, as well as Cheshire-based tourist attraction, The Ice Cream Farm. Recently undergoing a multi-million pound re-development, the Ice Cream Farm now includes one of the largest purpose built ice cream parlours in the world. It attracts almost one million visitors a year, making it the largest family entertainment centre of its kind in the UK

CWaC Councillors

Cllr. Louise Gittins

Cllr. Harry Tonge