Meet the Trustees

Tony Andrews

Tony was born in Holland, he attended St Andrew’s University and spent most of his early working life abroad, first with the Royal Marines and later with The British Council. After leaving the British Council Tony was Chief Executive of the Scottish Countryside Alliance and latterly Director of the Atlantic Salmon Trust. Tony is a committed countryman with a focus on angling and river management. When not involved in Scottish rural matters, Tony enjoys walking and sampling local cultures in the Italian countryside. Tony lives in Angus on the banks of the South Esk with his wife and their two dogs.

Tony Andrews photo


Jean Howman

Jean has a BSc Hons from St Andrews University in Zoology, a Cert Ed from Edinburgh and a professional qualification from the Institute of Fisheries Management MIFM. She also recently gained a MBE for conservation and services to the countryside. She is kept very busy running Trout Fisheries South of the Border and farming Belted Galloways in Glen Shee. Jean’s hobbies include fishing, shooting, photography and travel.



Nicola Simpson

Nicola’s previous roles include charity management and administration for the World Pheasant Association and then as National Fundraising Manager for Leonard Cheshire. She has been involved with Countryside Learning Scotland since its formation in 2003 as the Scottish Countryside Alliance Educational Trust (SCAET). Nicola was the first Chief Executive of SCAET and led it through 10 years before standing down to spend more time on her family businesses. Nicola lives in Fife, she has one young son, shoots in her ‘spare’ time and is passionate about the Scottish countryside.


Paul Tinson

Paul has a background in educational leadership and management following Aberdeen University and Moray House as Housemaster, Deputy Headmaster and Head of Senior School. He is a graduate of the Scottish Enterprise Rural Leadership programme and after a spell with Lantra, now works to develop the unique rural charity, RSABI for land-based professions. Paul’s governance responsibilities include CLS educational programmes. A family man, he enjoys strong agricultural and countryside ties in Fife, golf and the occasional sea kayak trip.

Paul Tinson photo


Alister Aitkenhead

Alister is currently a partner at Anderson Strathern in Glasgow.



Jim Drysdale

A solicitor for over 30 years specialising in anything outside the 30 mile an hour limit, with a keen interest in the diversity of the jigsaw which makes our countryside what it is. Jim says: Horse, gun and rod have been a large feature of my life but I recognise it is the rich tapestry of interwoven land use which it is important to preserve. The countryside is Scotland’s larder and I believe it is imperative that we encourage youngsters to seek rural jobs.



David Ritchie

David has been a biology teacher for 14 years, teaching both in England and Scotland. Growing up in rural Northumberland David developed a love of the outdoors and all things associated with it.  He is a keen salmon fisherman and is increasingly interested in the conservation of this species. He is chair of the Atlantic Salmon Conservation Schools Network. Aside from teaching and fishing David is an enthusiastic amateur boat builder and sailor. David lives in the countryside of Fife with his family and numerous pets.

David Ritchie photo



Deirdre Stewart

Deirdre is a Land Agent with CKD Galbraith, with 15 years’ experience, working on traditional estates all over Scotland. Mum of two Dierdre is from Inverness-shire, where she grew up on a small farm, her Father working for the Forestry Commission, and her mother a primary school teacher. She loves all country sports, and in particular has a keen interest in deer management. Here she states…

‘I believe that we must build upon early learning and understanding of farming, food production and other industries, to help ensure that both the natural and social fabric of rural Scotland will be well supported, managed and sustained by the next generation.  I would like to assist CLS to facilitate the provision of resources and expertise, to help children and students of all ages to understand the opportunities which exist for them in Scotland’s countryside, and to deepen their understanding of the roles of the people who work and live there, and the industries which they support.’

FullSizeRender (1)