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Former rail executive is new head of Canal & River Trust

Richard Parry, currently a director of the First Group rail operator and for many years a senior executive of London Underground, is to be the new chief executive of the Canal & River Trust, succeeding Robin Evans, who steps down shortly. 

Richard Parry had spent 19 years with the London tube network in various senior roles, including revenue and strategy - culminating as deputy managing director for TfL Rail and Underground. 

He moved to First Group in January last year to take charge of its bid for the West Coast rail franchise, which it won from Virgin last August. However, when this was overturned by the government in October after a legal challenge he was moved to run the much smaller Hull Trains company in December 2012.

He is also a trustee of People 1st – the council which was set up to improve skills in the hospitality, passenger transport, travel and tourism industries, particularly in the areas of management and leadership, customer service and craft/technical skills.
CRT chairman Tony Hales said Parry’s rail experience had given him “fantastic experience of managing complex  infrastructure – something which is crucial for our network of lock flights, embankments, soaring aqueducts and other engineering feats of the industrial age.” 

Hales praised Parry’s “strong record of leading organisations through change,” and said he was “very pleased that Richard is moving from rail to water, recognising the renaissance that has seen our canals and rivers come to life and the opportunity we have to give them a bright future.”

Parry himself said “I have bags of enthusiasm for the waterways and have seen first-hand the shot in the arm that canals provide to the communities they flow through.” 
Richard Parry is 46 and married with two teenage daughters, and lives in the West Midlands.

Friday 3 May  | Andrew Denny  | 10.30am, Friday 3 May 2013

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