Sayer is currently chief executive of United Response - a major national charity that supports people with learning disabilities, mental health needs and physical disabilities - but is due to step down later this year. Following an open recruitment process she will replace Peter Waine, who leaves the post after six years.
Sayer will lead a board of ten trustees and work closely with chief executive, Shaun Spiers, to guide CPRE as it works to meet its 2026 ‘Vision for the Countryside’.
Having co-founded United Response and built it into a charity with £75m turnover and a workforce of 3500 people, Sayer brings a wealth of expertise to CPRE. She has also been a board member for Southern Housing Group, was chair of ACEVO, and is an honorary visiting fellow at Cass Business School in London.
CPRE campaigns to promote the value of the countryside and protect it from unnecessary damage. CPRE works with its network of branches to promote solutions that meet the country’s housing and development needs while safeguarding our green spaces.
Su Sayer said:
“The countryside is in my blood and I’m thrilled to have been offered a position that will allow me to apply everything I’ve learnt at United Response to another cause very close to my heart.
“For me the countryside is a place for tranquillity and well-being. I believe everyone should have the opportunity to enjoy and appreciate it. We should all feel a responsibility to protect and enhance what is essentially the nation’s back garden – somewhere to rest and recuperate.
“CPRE has an impressive list of achievements but as the demand for new housing and development grows, it’s so important that the public and Government do all they can to protect our beautiful and precious countryside.”
Peter Waine, current Chair of the Campaign to Protect Rural England, said:
“It is with a heavy heart that I step down as Chair of CPRE. I have felt privileged over the last six years to work with an organisation that campaigns so intelligently to promote the importance of our countryside and protect it from damaging development.
“We are under mounting pressure as the drive for economic growth at any cost threatens our green and pleasant land, but with Su Sayer at the helm I am confident CPRE will go from strength to strength. We need to be constantly vigilant whichever party is in power.”