Meet the Assessors

Applications will be reviewed by a team of independent Assessors, led by a Chief Assessor. The Princess Royal Training Awards assessors have been selected for their experience in training and skills development across a wide range of organisations and sectors.

The team of Assessors will assess each written application independently and provide expert feedback designed to help you analyse your learning and development strategy.

The Assessors will also produce detailed assessment reports for organisations who are visited at their premises. These will be presented by the Chief Assessor to the Princess Royal Training Awards Commission, who will make the final decision about who receives the award.

Paul Robertson, Princess Royal Training Awards Chief Assessor

Paul Robertson

Chief Assessor

Paul established Management Learning Resources (MLR) in 1986 when he returned to the UK after working in senior HR positions in US technology and computer companies. To date MLR has helped thousands of HR professionals develop over ½ million people.

Paul has provided authors and product developers with extensive support in developing learning resources both in the UK and in the US. As well as his role as Director of Learning Materials and Products at MLR, Paul’s consulting work has included Organisational Development and Senior Management Coaching for Financial and Healthcare organisations and he recently led a Corporate Culture Survey in the NHS with over 10,000 respondents.

Paul was one of the original team working on the National Training Awards and progressed from Assessor to Quality Assurance Manager. He is currently the Quality Assurance Manager for the National Apprenticeship Awards, a role he has held for a number of years, and provides assessment and judging support at Regional and National Level.

Paul says: 'Becoming Chief Assessor for the Princess Royal Training Awards is an opportunity to be part of truly national awards process that seeks to identify, celebrate and share excellence in training/learning and development across all organisational sectors in the United Kingdom.'

Debbie Betteridge, Princess Royal Training Awards Deputy Chief Assessor

Debbie Betteridge

Deputy Chief Assessor

Debbie has extensive leadership experience in the FE and skills sector and has worked in a range of national organisations such as the Centre for Training and Education and the Learning and Skills Improvement Service (LSIS).

Debbie is passionate about training and development and has designed and delivered a range of Leadership and Management programmes all aimed at ensuring individual, team and organisational improvement.

Since 2009, Debbie has run her own training solutions consultancy, Ambazac Partnership. Recently she has specialised in safeguarding policy and practice and was involved in the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics and England 2015 World Rugby as Designated Officer for safeguarding and safer recruitment processes. Debbie is currently a Managing Partner at Safe and Equal Learning Partnership, providing leadership and quality improvement training as well as consultancy in all areas of safeguarding and equality and diversity. The practice focuses on the further education and training sectors.

From 2005-2009, Debbie worked as Quality Assurance Manager for the National Training Awards and contributed to developing its assessment and judging processes. Following this experience, Debbie held a Lead Assessor role for the National Apprenticeship Awards.

Debbie says: 'The Princess Royal Training Awards excite me because I see this as great way of both recognising and celebrating excellent training and development that brings about organisational and individual improvement.'

Carolyn Hooker, Princess Royal Training Awards Assessor

Carolyn Hooker


Carolyn specialises in Insights, Investors in People and executive coaching. Until recently she was a manager with Grant Thornton in the Business Growth Unit in London (she is still an Associate with the firm).

During her earlier career she was with Henley Management College and the Open University Business School, leaving to set up a new national e-learning company.

She is experienced in business change scenarios, employee engagement, and delivering leadership and talent strategies in all sectors, private, public and charitable. Current and previous clients include a regional airport, the UK Met Office, a UK Commission and a UN Agency in Geneva. Her expertise lies in identifying simple, pragmatic solutions to seemingly complex problems. She has extensive experience in executive coaching and has a strong track record in delivering training and team days.

Carolyn is a Fellow of the CIPD, a member of the ICF, she was an Ambassador for National Training Awards for over 10 years, and support Judging Panels across the UK. She is an Associate of the Centre for Leadership at Exeter University Business School and a Fellow of the RSA.

Carolyn says: ‘The Princess Royal Training Awards is a fantastic opportunity to showcase training in the UK at its very best and it’s always a pleasure to see the commitment given by organisations to improving performance. One tip would be to include plenty of evidence to show what’s been achieved’.

Nicola Laverton, Princess Royal Training Awards Assessor

Nicola Laverton


Nicola's HR career spans 20 years in senior management and consultancy, with a successful track record in the blue chip, service, financial and public sectors.

Nicola's UK and International company experience was with Tesco, Diageo, Avon Cosmetics and the AA; other clients include PRO Insurance, Armour Re, Babcock International and Barclaycard.

She has implemented a range of HR strategies at the organisational level to enable business and performance improvement. Her strength in designing and implementing Talent management strategies has resulted in step-change improvements in leadership development, change management and organisational development. In addition, she has extensive experience in senior coaching and team development to achieve insight, growth and change.

Nicola has strong assessment experience both in the corporate and education sectors including the assessment of programmes delivered by Oxford Brookes University to commercial clients. She has worked on the CDR International 360 degree feedback and is qualified to use a range of psychometric tools recognised by the British Psychological Society. She is an Assessor for the National Apprenticeship Awards and was involved with the National Training Awards as a Judge, Assessor, mentor and workshop facilitator.

Nicola says: 'This prestigious award will showcase and recognise at a national level learning and development programmes that have truly benefitted the business.'

Heather Moore, Princess Royal Training Awards Assessor

Heather Moore


Heather is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development and has over 20 years’ experience in Human Resources, working with organisations in the public, charity and private sectors.

Heather runs an HR consultancy based in Sussex and provides advice to SMEs on performance management and recruitment strategy, and support on contracts, redundancy and compliance with employment law.

She holds qualifications from the Chartered Institute of Personnel & Development and has a Post Graduate Certificate in Education Management. She is a Trustee of Autism Sussex. She was an Assessor for the National Training Awards for 9 years.

Heather says: 'I feel privileged and lucky to be part of these new awards, and to hear about how innovative and excellent training has made a difference to organisations, both big and small.'

Richard Perry, Princess Royal Training Awards Assessor

Richard Perry


Richard has extensive experience as a consultant, trainer and facilitator specialising in leadership, business process management and the implementation of change.

Richard has worked both in the corporate sector - with clients such as Unilever, Vodafone, Toshiba and Hewlett-Packard Medical systems - and the public sector such as the City and County of Swansea and the Welsh Government.

Today, Richard holds the role of Leadership Development Officer at Swansea University, working on designing and delivering the ION leadership programmes for all sizes of business. He is also an ILM qualifications Assessor.

Richard is the author of respected business and leadership publications and has lectured to MBA and Entrepreneurship students at Swansea University and at University of Wales Trinity St David. He continues to develop learning and self-assessment tools to promote skills development across the public and private sectors.  He has been an Assessor for the National Apprenticeship Awards for the last 4 years.

He says: 'I am looking forward to the validation visits and seeing how training ambitions have translated into tangible results for both the organisation and the individuals involved. Seeing the words on the application come to life is an exciting prospect.'

Phil Barnett, Princess Royal Training Awards Assessor

Phil Barnett


Phil has over twenty-five years’ experience in the further education and skills sector, working as an independent consultant for the Centre for Excellence in Leadership, the Association of Colleges, Lifelong Learning UK and the Learning and Skills Improvement Service.

Phil is a partner in a leading further education and skills sector consultancy specialising in safeguarding and equality & diversity.

Having been a senior manager in further and adult education colleges he now works with private and public sector providers of all kinds.

Phil is committed to creating training and development programmes that give staff the practical skills and knowledge they need to deliver complex services to learners.

He is particularly excited about being a PRTA assessor because it will give him the opportunity to use and share his sector experience and to learn from the extraordinarily creative and effective practice developed by training providers of all kinds and sizes.

The most important tip he offers to applicants is: let the learner voice be the best ambassador for your work. Empowered, enthused learners exemplify the impact we seek to recognise.

Fenella Tallon, Princess Royal Training Awards Assessor

Fenella Tallon


Fenella has run an education and learning management consultancy since April 2004. She currently works on establishing training and development needs across 12 schools and 4 colleges for East Sussex post-16 Education Improvement Partnership.

Fenella has worked with the East Sussex County Council since 2013, supporting the Standards & Learning Effectiveness Service on a range of learning advice and guidance projects.

In the past Fenella has contributed to the ‘Skills for Work’ study, a £9M project jointly funded by the European Social Fund and the Learning & Skills Council. She has also worked at the Learning and Skills Improvement Service on the evaluation of national safeguarding and safer recruitment training materials. Fenella has also developed an assessment guide for universities and colleges across Sussex for the Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL).

In addition to her experience of assessment, Fenella held Assessor roles both for the National Training Awards from 2004-2012 and the National Apprenticeship Awards from 2006-2010.

Fenella says: 'I am delighted to take on the role of assessor for the Princess Royal Training Awards. It is a pleasure and privilege to learn first-hand how training has helped change the way organisations work for the better.'

Jill Davies

Jill Davies


Following a successful career at Marks and Spencer plc in commercial management, Jill set up her own business offering consultancy and training services with a wide-ranging client base including a number of blue chip companies and over 100 SMEs based in South Wales.

Her expertise is in people development, specialising in leadership and management, team building, executive coaching and business development.  Jill is an Investors in People Specialist, qualified Assessor, IQA and EQA, delivers and assesses teaching qualifications to work based learning providers and ILM Leadership and Management qualifications to a wide range of organisations.

Jill is also currently working with Swansea University on a Leadership programme for Managers and Directors of companies across Wales. She is involved in design, delivery and is providing coaching and mentoring to participants helping support their business growth.

Jill is a Member of the CIPD, Institute Consulting and a qualified SFEDI Business Adviser.

Contact us

Our Head Office address

City & Guilds Group
1 Giltspur Street
London, UK

Call the Princess Royal Training Awards support team