The National Trust has a new chairman. Tim Parker, a former Treasury economist, will succeed Simon Jenkins, who steps down after six years in the post, after the Trust’s AGM on November 8. Mr Parker, 58, has been a member of the Trust for 30 years and is chairman of its Commercial Panel.

An experienced businessman, he is chief executive of the luggage firm Samsonite and has been involved with such well-known names as Kwik-Fit, the AA, Legal & General and Alliance Boots. He owns the British Pathé Film Archive and is a patron of the National Theatre and a friend of the Royal Opera.

The National Trust has expressed disappointment that it has been unsuccessful in its bid to buy Bantham Beach and the Avon Estuary in Dorset.

It was sold, for in excess of its £11 million asking price, to a ‘family who will continue to manage and conserve the estate,’ said James Baker of selling agents Strutt and Parker.

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