Retail Apprenticeship Board

Representatives from eight organisations have secured a leading role in the future of retail apprenticeships with a seat on the Retail Apprenticeship Board.

The following members, carefully selected for their combined expertise and passion in driving up the quality of apprenticeships, will each will play a significant part in helping to ensure the new apprenticeship standards remain fit for purpose for all businesses across the industry:

  • Sue Renny,  apprenticeship programme manager, AS Watson
  • Callum Ross, performance & development manager (Europe), C & J Clark International
  • Lloyd Thomas, group apprenticeship manager, Co-op
  • Caroline Gascoigne, national qualifications manager, DFS
  • Fiona French, people director, Fortnum & Mason (chair of the board)
  • Debbie Cox, recruitment & competence development manager UK/IE, Ikea
  • Lisa Leighton, head of people, Wm Morrison Supermarkets Plc
  • Alys Reeves, early careers manager, Sainsbury’s Argos

  • Greg Stewart, apprenticeship levy manager, Tesco
  • Katherine Newson, commercial academy-capability manager, Travis Perkins

Nominations now re-open

We would like to extend membership more widely across the industry and continue to invite both large and SME businesses to nominate. 


Find out more about the role of Retail Apprenticeship Board.

Who can sit on the apprenticeship board?
  • Membership is open to retail employers of all sizes and types, and will include a minimum of two SMEs.
  • The board includes a maximum of 15 employer members with voting rights, whose term lasts two fiscal years.
  • Additional members with no voting rights, include People 1st and nominated partners including one college, one private training provider and one independent assessment organisation, whose term lasts one fiscal year.
Member specification
  • Members must have a sound knowledge of apprenticeships and their overall opportunity to improve productivity across the economy as a whole
  • The individual must be nominated by their employer and selection is based on a complimentary mix of specialisms and expertise in relation to apprenticeships, for example: skills development, global skills models, human resource management, talent management, careers, finance, policy, marketing and communications
  • The business and their nominated employer must demonstrate a passion to drive the industry’s commitment to quality apprenticeships and a genuine desire to raise the overall quality of professional standards in the retail industry, address skills gaps and positively impact on productivity.
  • The business must employ, or intend to employ, at least one apprentice (the expectation is that the number of apprentices will be considerably higher in larger businesses).

Term of membership   

Membership to the apprenticeship boards runs from March 2018 for two years.

Nomination committee

To maintain the employer-led ethos of this process, the nomination committee will be made up of employers from other industries within the visitor economy sector and key partners including:

  • Four  employers 
  • A representative from key industry associations
  • A representative from People 1st

In the unlikely event that a membership application is turned down, the nominations committee will consider all appeals. All appeals will need to be submitted in writing and every appeal will have the right of a written response.