The BID is led by a volunteer Board of Directors who are experienced local business and community leaders driven and united by their passion for our city. They meet regularly to make sure there is real value in all decisions made.

The Board ensure that the implementation of the BID is monitored and delivered cost effectively, through keeping overheads to a minimum and using methods which will optimise the use of the revenue budget and add real value to the delivery of the plan.

St Albans BID Board meets regularly to ensure best practices and best value in all that we do. The Board act in accordance to the BID’s Articles of Association which you can read here.

Click on each Board Director’s picture to read a brief introduction to them.

Board Members

Sarah Gillow

Sarah Gillow Chair and Director

After completing a degree in fashion textiles at Brighton University, I worked as a women’s fashion & lingerie buyer for Marks and Spencer. Fast forward a few years, I left to pursue a role as creative director at Galio Jewellers on George Street.

For the last 28 years I’ve worked with my husband to build the business. Together we own Galio and Jago jewellers. Now the work is full time and full on, especially with my involvement in the St Albans BID.

I’m passionate about the vibrancy of the city centre. We need to keep it as busy possible and attractive for people that live here, work here and visit us. Involvement in the BID seemed the only way to have a voice in the wider business community and to help shape the future. The businesses voted for it so we all own it!

To supplement an already full diary I have worked with successive charities as a fundraiser, organising an annual fashion show at Lords Cricket Ground for Breast Cancer Research and a Gala dinner in aid of Rennie Grove Hospice Care. I also have fund raised for Cherry Lodge in Barnet and I volunteer at a homeless shelter and an Assylum Seekers Drop in centre.

Alison Berneye

Alison Berneye Chief Executive Officer

Alison started her career in Hotel Management, initially working at St. Michaels Manor during her college days. She swiftly moved in to Shopping Centre Management attending the same meetings as Phil Corrigan some 25 years ago! Latterly she ran her own Events Management Company with Shopping Centres, Farm Parks and Garden Centres as clients. Due to the success of her business, she retired in January 2020 after 22 years. Alison then took on voluntary roles as a Trustee for St Albans Citizens Advice and as a Mentor for the Princes Trust, supporting young people wanting to start their own business. Having Chaired the St Albans Visitor Partnership for 4 years Alison was invited to become the Independent Chair of the BID Board and subsequently the interim Executive BID Manager. Alison lives in the City Centre and has two adult daughters who also live in St Albans.

Harry Kinsley

Harry Kinsley Board Director

Harry is Head of Operations at Debenhams Ottaway LLP, a leading local multi-service law firm, known for delivering clients outstanding service and award-winning legal advice. He joined the board of directors in March 2021 as he recognised the important role the BID plays in supporting the local business community. Meeting like-minded professionals in the levy area has enabled Harry to get even more involved in the work the BID does and in the city that he is proud to call home. Harry lives locally and has a keen interest in sustainability and the environment being a keen gardener and allotment holder.

Marilyn Bell

Marilyn Bell Board Director

New Board Director brings legal know-how to St Albans BID

Marilyn Bell of St Albans based SA Law joins the BID team as a Board Director this April bringing with her a wealth of knowledge and experience.

Interim Executive BID Manager, Alison Berneye, said:

“We are delighted to welcome Marilyn to the board, she brings a new set of skills as a Solicitor. It’s great news because Marilyn can help us look at different ways to support the many professional services firms in our levy area.”

“The BID board has a variety of 10 Directors – which means we have a fantastic balance of skill sets and experience as we head into our second term.”

Marilyn, who is a partner at SA Law said: I live and work in St Albans and have done for many years. I am really pleased to become a Director and to work more closely with BID. It does so much for St Albans and I am looking forward to being part of that work.

Daniel Graham

Daniel Graham Board Director

Daniel Graham is the Managing Director of local marketing agency OnBrand, a company he founded in 2009.

Based in the heart of St Albans, Daniel brings a wealth of communications and marketing experience to the team and is actively involved in the BID Destination Management sub committee. He is very passionate about ensuring the city thrives as a business community and supporting local business growth. Daniel has two children, one of which is at school in St Albans and in his spare time enjoys walking his dogs, football, cars and whiskey – but not all together!

Paul Bedi

Paul Bedi Board Director

Paul is the Branch Manager at Barclays in St Albans and has been with the bank over 23 years. In that time Paul has worked with the Business, Wealth and Transformation team. This has given Paul a unique insight into many different parts of retail banking.

Gemma Jones

Gemma Jones Board Director

Gemma is the Head of Marketing and Visitor Experience at St Albans Cathedral. She joined the board of directors in September 2023 and brings her marketing, events and local authority experience to the board. Gemma has two young daughters and lives in St Albans with her husband. Gemma is originally from Warwickshire but has lived in St Albans for 10 years. Gemma loves to shop, so her passion for making the city centre a vibrant, welcoming place will always shine through.

Steve Walker

Steve Walker Board Director

I first started working in St Albans (on Holywell Hill) in 1987, it was a great company and I enjoyed my time there. After a couple of years, however, I thought, with youthful enthusiasm, that I could do it better; hence, Collinson Hall came into being. Although the faces here have changed over the years, and I have gone from being the youngest in the team to one of the oldest, I am pleased to say that we have grown the business through multiple economic cycles and have, along the way, adapted to the changing business and economic landscape in St Albans.

Collinson Hall operates in both the residential and commercial business sectors which has given me considerable experience of both and their unique rhythms, demands and opportunities.

I look forward to bringing this experience to the BID and hope that my skillset will help build on the BID achievements to date.

Sally-Anne Shepherd

Sally-Anne Shepherd Board Director

Sally founded the award winning Eve & Adam Beauty Clinic, Catherine St,  in 2003.  Prior to her involvement in health and aesthetics industry her background has been in design & branding and property. She joined the board of directors in September 2023 and brings with her the experience of running a small business. Sally has a daughter who is studying at University of Nottingham and has lived in St Albans for 32 years with her husband. She has an active lifestyle, is a lover of dogs and the outdoors and has recently become keen golfer! Being a small business owner in the city centre for over 20 years she has seen many changes and is passionate about supporting independents.

Get involved

We are always looking for new dynamic board members to shape our story. Join our current board members and make a difference to your City. Our main aim is to strengthen the Board with senior levy payers from a broad background to represent a wide range of sectors such as digital, marketing, leisure, hospitality or finance; keeping a balance on age, gender and the different areas within the district. During the BID’s term, £2.5 million will be invested into the BID’s priorities: making St Albans a cleaner and safer City, driving business support and networking and promoting an active and attractive district where businesses can start-up, stay-up and thrive.

We want to hear from senior decision makers from large organisations or SMEs that are currently BID levy payers who want to give back to the community and help improve the City by delivering the core areas within the BID business plan. Board members are expected to take a leading role alongside the BID team to help develop initiatives within the main priorities for the City.

Please email Alison Berneye, CEO St Albans BID if you are interested or would like further information.