Eden Project executive joins Kew

The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew has appointed Gaynor Coley as director of public pogrammes.
She will be responsible for the public programme as well as external communication, community outreach and education for the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

The public programme includes all elements of the visitor experience other than horticulture and estates.  This includes strategic planning and delivery of festivals, exhibitions, on-site interpretation, catering, retail, commercial events, venue hire and visitor services.

Communications and outreach elements of the role cover publishing, digital media, public relations, marketing, licensing, education, community outreach, volunteering programme and major projects and partnerships including Big Lottery-funded Grow Wild.

She is currently executive director at The Eden Project, where she is responsible for all financial, commercial, educational and operational aspects.  Before this, she helped to plan for and set up Eden in 1997.

She said: "I am hugely looking forward to working at RBG Kew.  It is one of the greatest institutions in the world.  Having been part of the Eden Team since the start, it is a big wrench to go, but for me the challenge is drawing on this valuable experience to help create a Kew that is relevant and important to the 21st Century, a Kew that plays an active part in partnership with others, to make a major contribution to conservation and livelihoods at home and abroad.

"In short to ensure that the widest audience possible recognises the crucial importance of plants to the future of humankind.  My first love is education and combining this with an ever improving programme of events will I hope bring new audiences to enjoy and appreciate the great gardens and science of Kew."

Kew director Richard Deverell said: "I am really pleased that we have someone of Gaynor’s experience and record of achievement and success joining the senior team at Kew.  She brings tremendous energy, a spirit of ambition for Kew and a great sense of humour, so I am very much looking forward to working with her."

Trustees chairman Marcus Agius said:  "We look forward to this appointment strengthening the working relationship between Kew and Eden."

Gaynor Coley is expected to join Kew in the autumn.

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