BRITISH politician, merchant banker and former trade union leader, Lord David Triesman, is set to take over the helm of the Dartington Trust.

Lord Triesman, who is a Labour member of the House of Lords, is due to replace current trust chairman, Dr Greg Parston, in March next year.

Lord Triesman said: “I am delighted to have the opportunity to chair the Dartington Trust. Dartington is truly unique. It brings together excellent art and design and, increasingly, innovative holistic work in social and environmental sciences and ecology. Its contribution to a just and sustainable future is legendary. Dartington is both a local and global treasure.

“Huge steps have been taken by outgoing chair, Greg Parston, and his fellow trustees, and they are owed a debt of considerable thanks.

“I aim to ensure Dartington contributes significant thought leadership in education, innovation and environmental progress. And I am sure it will.”

Lord Triesman is a co-founder of the Clean Growth Network, and has chaired and served on boards of a number of charities and companies, including as trustee of the children’s charity Bounce Forward, governor of the Capital Colleges Group and chairman of the Football Association. He is currently Senior Visiting Research Fellow at Cambridge University.

He is group director of Salamanca Group and served on the boards of Havin Bank, Templewood Merchant Bank and the UBS Advisory Board.

During his political life, Lord Triesman was responsible for the Prime Minister’s political organisation under Tony Blair and subsequently served as Under Secretary of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office; the Department of Innovation, Universities and Skills; and has held ministerial roles in energy, business, higher education and Europe. He was also general secretary of the Association of University Teachers.

 Dr Parston said: “Having known David for many years, I am confident that he will bring not only great governance, management and collaboration experience but also fresh thinking, wide experience and extensive connections to the Board’s leadership role. He will be key in the centenary planning, in which I am delighted to still be playing a part.

Of his own chairmanship, Dr Parston said: “The role has been both demanding and invigorating; there have been both challenges and periods of real enlightenment and achievement. With the hard work and dedication of Dartington employees and volunteers, we have set the trust on a renewed path of ‘learning by doing’ in ecology and the arts.

“A future of sustainability and social fairness is now there to be made and I know David is the right person to lead this.”