Jonathan Bray is to step down as director of the Urban Transport Group in April, having held the position for 15 years.
During his time at the helm, Jonathan has shaped national policy on urban transport across the UK, guiding the network through the COVID crisis, expanded membership and helped save members of the group millions through the implementation of cost-effective working practices.
The Urban Transport Group represents the seven strategic transport authorities in Greater Manchester (Transport for Greater Manchester), Liverpool City Region (Merseytravel), London (Transport for London), South Yorkshire (South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority), Tyne and Wear (Nexus), West Midlands (Transport for West Midlands) and West Yorkshire (West Yorkshire Combined Authority). Over twenty million people are served by the group’s network.
As well as heading up the group since 2008 and leading its work on bus, regional and urban rail, tram, funding and governance, Jonathan is also a senior visiting fellow at LSE Cities, a Commissioner on the Commission on Travel Demand, a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Highways and Transportation, an Academician at the Academy of Urbanism, a Director of Good Journey CIC and a member of the UITP Organising Authorities and Policy Boards, as well as being a regular contributor to industry publications.
Jonathan Bray said: “It’s been an honour and a privilege to fight the corner of public transport and active travel on behalf of the UK’s largest urban areas and to have had the opportunity to work with so many talented and committed people both at our members and in the Urban Transport Group team. However, after twenty years in total at the Urban Transport Group (and its predecessor the Passenger Transport Executive Group), it feels like the right time both for me to start a new phase in my life, with more flexibility, and for the organisation.
“I’m particularly pleased to have been director when we grew the membership of the organisation; transformed its status and influence; made it possible to bring buses back under local control; kept the wheels turning during the pandemic and made Urban Transport Group the place where respected thinking happens on the future of urban transport.
“When I leave, I will be taking some time out to recharge and then I will be available if there are useful roles I can play under the broad heading of making progressive change happen. But that’s to come and in the meantime I look forward to continuing to make my contribution to the work of the Urban Transport Group network in the six months ahead.”
Laura Shoaf, chair of the Urban Transport Group, and chief executive at West Midlands Combined Authority, said: “The Urban Transport Group has gone from strength to strength under Jonathan’s leadership and he helped us all navigate a very challenging time around Covid. His expertise, advocacy and policy knowledge are second to none and while we will miss him tremendously, we wish him all the best for the future.”
Image credit: The Urban Transport Group