Chief Executive of Active Travel England

Department for Transport

York, with regular travel to London and other sites across England

  • Location

    York, with regular travel to London and other sites across England

  • Job type


  • Sector

    Central Government

  • Salary/Remuneration

    circa £110,000

  • Job ref


  • Expiry date

    21 February 2022

  • Client

    Department for Transport

Ref: GSe82292






Active Travel England is a new commissioning body and inspectorate being established to deliver on the Gear Change strategy. It will ensure the Government’s unprecedented £2 billion dedicated investment, as well as wider Government investment, in active travel makes the biggest difference possible.  Achieving the goals and vision set out by this new organisation will not only improve air quality and help combat climate change; it won’t just improve the health and wellbeing of a nation and address inequalities; it will make nicer places for us and our families to live.  Perhaps most importantly, Active Travel England will drive this culture change by helping councils across the country develop the specialised skills, knowledge and capabilities they need to bring about these changes.

Its responsibilities will include holding the cycling and walking budget, approving and inspecting schemes, inspecting highway authorities, leading on training, good practice, knowledge sharing and reviewing major planning applications to help improve the provision of cycling and walking infrastructure.

Delivering this ambitious vision will be exciting and demanding in equal measure. We need an exceptional, outcome-driven person to work with the National Active Travel Commissioner to first establish and then run this transformational new body. You will need to demonstrate that you have the leadership skills and ability to shape a new organisation, together with excellent engagement and influencing skills to enable you to overcome resistance and build collaboration with a wide variety of partners.  We need you to bring strong delivery skills, ideally with a track record of delivering contested infrastructure or programmes in the active travel, transport or other sector.

With a level of passion and enthusiasm to genuinely make the difference that this organisation has the capability of making, you will have the ability to inspire people both inside and outside of the organisation and at all levels of seniority.

As Chief Executive, you will be leading the step change that the nation needs in cycling and walking over the coming years. The challenge is significant but so is the potential. England needs to move differently and this is your opportunity to lead this transformation.


Recruitment Timetable

Closing Date
23:55 on Monday 21 February 2022

Longlist Meeting
Tuesday 8 March 2022

Preliminary interviews with GatenbySanderson
From 9 March to 15 March 2022

Shortlist Meeting
Monday 21 March 2022

Assessments - ILA and SEE
From 31 March to 8 April 2022

Meeting with Ministers
Tuesday 19th April 2022

Final Panel Interviews
Tuesday 26 & Wednesday 27 April 2022

How to apply


To apply for this post please submit the following documents no later than 23:55 on Monday 21st February 2022.

1.A CV setting out your career history, with key responsibilities and achievements. Please ensure you have provided reasons for any gaps within the last two years.

2.A Statement of Suitability (no longer than two pages) explaining how you consider your personal skills, qualities and experience provide evidence of your suitability for the role, with particular reference to the criteria in the person specification.

Failure to submit both documents will mean the panel only have limited information on which to assess your application against the criteria in the person specification. 

As part of the online application process, you will be asked a number of diversity-related questions. If you do not wish to provide a declaration on any of the particular characteristics, you will have the option to select 'prefer not to say'. All monitoring data will be treated in the strictest confidence and will not be provided to the selection panel.

If you are unable to apply online, or have any issues with the online application process, please contact

For a confidential discussion please contact our recruitment advisers at GatenbySanderson: