We are the only membership charity campaigning for the protection and enjoyment of the Dales
 We are the only membership charity campaigning for the protection and enjoyment of the Dales

Our Team

Ann Shadrake

Executive Director


Ann works closely with the Trustees of the charity and manages a team of volunteers. Ann works part-time across four days in the week and is responsible for managing and implementing the charity's strategy, membership, campaigning and policy work, publicity and financial administration. Ann has worked for the charity since January 2011. 


Ann has a MSc in Natural Resource Management and has worked for a number of Yorkshire based charities and the national park authority in management and fundraising roles. 












Penny Lowe

Administration Assistant


Working part-time across two - three days per week, Penny joined us in March 2017. Penny works on all aspects of membership administration - sending out welcome packs to new Friends of the Dales, keeping our records sorted and up to date, setting up Direct Debit payments, tracking our monthly income and expenditure and dealing with a hundred and one queries on all things Friends of the Dales! Penny has a wide range of experience and skills, having worked for the NHS in a financial role, for a Yorkshire education charity for 16 years, and also running her own business offering holistic therapy. 

Victoria Benn

Membership and Events Officer


Working part time, three days per week, Victoria joined us in April 2021. The aim of this new post is to have one person committed to promoting Friends of the Dales to different audiences so that the charity and the strength of its voice can continue to grow. Victoria is responsible for the management of our talks, walks, social media and publicity. Victoria is already well known as a feature writer across several regional publications and has also written two books about the Yorkshire Dales and its people and traditions.

Ann, Penny and Victoria are based at the charity's offices at Gargrave, near Skipton.

They can be contacted on 01756 749400 or by email

Ann Shadrake, Executive Director

Penny Lowe, Administration Assistant

                                            Victoria Benn, Membership and Events



All the Trustees are unpaid volunteers who together put in hundreds of hours every year to run our registered charity and deliver our campaigning work, communications and events. They also ensure our charity operates legally, for example making sure we comply with our financial and governance obligations from the Charity Commmission, Companies House and the Fundraising Regulator. 


1.Kevin Armstrong

2. Scarlett Armstrong

3. Kyle Blue

4. Anthony Bradley

5. Mark Corner 

6. Wilf Fenten (Vice Chair)

7. Ian Harrison (Treasurer)

8. Ken Humphris

9. Julie Martin

10. Bruce McLeod (Chair)

11. Ian McPherson

12. Malcolm Petyt (Vice President)

13. Tony Smith

14. Nancy Stedman

15. Mike Stephenson

16. Marion Temple

Our Honorary positions, elected annually at the AGM

Vice Presidents

  • Mrs Ann Cryer
  • Dr Malcolm Petyt
  • Dr Colin Speakman

Patron - Alastair Humphreys

Volunteers are essential to the delivery of our charity's work. Over the years volunteers together contribute hundreds of hours of unpaid work towards the events, putting together our flagship magazine - the Yorkshire Dales Reivew - and on membership and financial administration.

To find out more about volunteering, phone us on 01756 749400 or email: Victoria Benn

                                                                        Photo: Tree guard collection event March 2020 by Ann Shadrake

Bernard Peel is our longest standing regular volunteer, having played a big part over the last 10 years (and more) in supporting our membership administration and leading/helping at many of our walks and other events. 


We estimate that Bernard has put in over 3,500 hours of volunteering to support our charity - and counting!

Other regular volunteers 

Lynn Leadbeatter - who has supported our longstanding editor of the Review, Fleur Speakman over recent years and has now (mid 2017) taken on the Sub Editor role



Prue Harrison -  our new volunteer Editor of the Yorkshire Dales Review from August 2020 - welcome to Prue!  Prue takes over from Sasha Heseltine who has ably edited the Review since mid 2017. 

Would you like to volunteer to support our charity?

Would you like to help at our guided walks and other events - as a back marker, supporter or perhaps leader? Are you interested in helping monitor planning applications, organising events or writing for our membership magazine (as part of supported teams)? Could you consider the role of a Trustee? There are many opportunities depending on your interests, how much time you have and what activities you would like to explore. 
Contact us for an informal chat - by phone, Zoom or in person on 01756 749400, or email

Victoria Benn

There are many ways to Support our Charity and be a Friend of the Dales, to help keep the Dales special and vibrant for years to come. 

Join us as a member

Make a donation

Leave a gift  in your will

Register as a supporter 

Help as a volunteer at our events

Our Business members are very valuable to us and we thank them all. For a list of all these businesses, or for more information on the benefits of business membership, click HERE

Bill Bryson, a supporter, says :

"There isn't a more glorious and beguiling landscape anywhere, or one more deserving of our support. It really is as simple as that"

Alastair Humphreys 

Our Patron

says :


"it's more beautiful than you realise; the people are open and friendly and have time for you; your phone might not work which is a positive as you'll have more time - slow down and enjoy the silence".

Alastair’s quest for adventure began young. Aged 8, he completed the Yorkshire 3 Peaks Challenge over 26 miles 

Chair: Bruce McLeod

Registered Address:

Canal Wharf, Eshton Road, Gargrave, BD23 3PN.

Charity number 515384.Company limited by guarantee number 1822908

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© Friends of the Dales