Young professionals to speak alongside sector experts

14 October 2011

Two young water professionals have been selected to speak at the Institute of Water National Conference alongside a line up of exceptional industry speakers.

As part of the Institute of Water′s ongoing work to nurture rising talent in the water sector, Anna Gocher from South West Water and Ursula Trolan from Northumbrian Water will take centre stage at the two day Conference: ‘2012 - Changing the Industry for a Sustainable Legacy’ which will be held at The Royal Society in the heart of London from 17 - 18 May.

By the time the event commences in May 2012, most elements of the water industry will have been reviewed, re-structured or be subject to change. This Conference will bring together key people in the sector to discuss the implications of these changes and give their views on how they will ensure the industry can meet the challenges of today, whilst leaving a sustainable legacy for future generations. There is an exceptional line up of speakers, and these two young professionals have been selected to present as part of proceedings.

Young speakers have become an integral part of the Institute of Water Annual Conference in recent years giving young professionals the opportunity to showcase themselves in front of key personnel from within the UK Water Industry.

Speaking about the initiative, Institute of Water President Nick Ellins commented:

“The Institute of Water is providing the best possible business environment for water professionals to develop and apply their skills, helping them to learn directly from the top performers in the sector. We offer people who join the Institute of Water unique career opportunities in a motivating and enjoyable setting".

Anna, 28, will join Martin Baggs (Thames Water); Marian Spain (Ofwat); and Paul Leinster (Environment Agency) on stage to discuss the many changes taking place and what the implications/outcomes of those changes are likely to be. Anna, an Analytical Team Leader, will consider the implications of the 2011 Government White Papers for the Water Industry and discuss South West Water’s ‘Upstream Thinking’ approach.

Ursula, 30, is Northumbrian Water’s Water Efficiency Coordinator and has three years experience working on various water efficiency projects in both Northumbrian Water and Essex & Suffolk Water. Ursula will be given the opportunity to speak alongside the lead Defra Director for water policy in England (Sonia Phippard) and the CEO of Anglian Water (Peter Simpson). Both speakers will be challenging the audience to think about water; and the value of water to society in a new way; and Ursula will talk about the difference in attitude towards water use and water efficiency between the Northumbrian Water and Essex & Suffolk Water regions.

Responding to being chosen as a speaker, Ursula said: “I am delighted to be given the opportunity to speak at the conference alongside much respected and knowledgeable colleagues from our industry and government agencies. Having spent three years working on water efficiency projects I am beginning to fully understand the difficulties we face as an industry to promote the value of water. I am really looking forward to the experience and to share ideas and best practice.”

The Chief Executive of Northumbrian Water Heidi Mottram will be providing a keynote address at the event on Changing the Industry for a Sustainable Legacy. Other high profile speakers include: Richard Flint (CEO of Yorkshire Water); Dame Yve Buckland (Chair of The Consumer Council for Water) and Paul Mullord (Director, British Water).

Full delegate places are available from £405, alongside a range of exhibition and sponsorship opportunities. Please visit¬†for further details.

For more press or event information please contact Lyndsey Gilmartin, on 0191 422 0088 or e-mail

The Institute of Water, formerly IWO (Institution of Water Officers), was founded in 1945 and is the only professional body that exclusively supports the careers of anyone working in the UK water industry.

The institute supports the careers of people working in all professions and at all levels across the UK water industry by offering a unique and independent learning, development and networking framework.

Northumbrian Water Limited supplies 2.6 million customers in the North East of England with water and waste water services, trading as Northumbrian Water, and 1.8 million customers in the South East of England with water services, trading as Essex & Suffolk Water.

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