Our People

Executive Directors

Jo Ritzema
Jo Ritzema - Managing Director

Jo Ritzema became our Managing Director in June 2013, having previously served on the board since 2007 as Finance Director and before that as Group Financial Controller.

Jo studied Accounting and French at Lancaster University and qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 1996. Before joining WCF she worked in Finance in industry, latterly with Eddie Stobart in Carlisle.

Jo recently qualified as a Chartered Director.

Married to Gary, Jo has an 18 year old camper van and spends most weekends out on the road.
Phil Murray Phil Murray – Deputy Managing Director

Phil was appointed to the Board in April 2018 as Deputy Managing Director.

Phil studied Accountancy with Marketing at Stirling University and qualified as a Chartered Accountant with PricewaterhouseCoopers in 1997. Throughout his career Phil has held senior finance and commercial director positions and has worked for companies such as Blacks Leisure Group, Formica and Caterpillar. Phil has experience in both raising finance and corporate due diligence having lead a number of strategic acquisitions.

Phil is a qualified open water diver and enjoys spending time with his partner and their children.

Non-Executive Directors

Martin Ward
Martin Ward

Martin has been a member of the board since October 2007.

Martin’s day job is as an audit and corporate finance partner at Dodd & Co, Chartered Accountants, where he specialises in advising entrepreneurial companies on their growth strategies, as well as keeping them on the straight and narrow with regard to corporate financial reporting matters. Martin previously worked in Edinburgh and London with Price Waterhouse.
David Routledge
David Routledge

Dave is a highly experienced executive and non-executive director, with extensive knowledge of strategic organisational development and operations leadership, in the petrochemical, pharmaceutical manufacturing and support services sectors. Internationally experienced, he has served on the main board of listed and private businesses in the UK, USA, Canada and India.
Rebecca Jenkins
Rebecca Jenkins

Rebecca is an experienced executive and non-executive Board director. She has held leadership positions in both an international FTSE 500 company and across private businesses. Rebecca brings a broad perspective through her experience in growing businesses, with a focus on strategy as well as client acquisition and retention. She is a strong advocate of bringing value innovation to the customer experience and in developing culture and values that encourage teams to flourish and deliver exceptional performance.

General Managers

Debbie Brimicombe Debbie Brimicombe - General Manager, Home Shopping

Developed Retail Management career across a number of well-known brands on the high street, culminating in Area management and Retail Operations. Joined WCF in 2003 with the acquisition of James Meade and became responsible for Buying and Merchandise for the brand. Progressed to General Manager Merchandise all brands with a re-location to Cumbria and recently undertook the additional responsibility for the operations at Brampton.
Tracey Cannon
Tracey Cannon - General Manager, Marketing, Home Shopping

Having studied Marketing at Northumbria University whilst working at Enesco European Giftware group in variety of roles. Joined WCF in 2004 as Marketing Manager for Home Shopping. Specialist in data and trend analysis, direct marketing, internet and catalogue production.
Heather Hughes
Heather Hughes - General Manager, WCF Horticulture

Heather has been General Manager of the WCF Horticulture business since June 2014. A graduate with a BA (Hons) in Business Studies from Abertay University and a Post Graduate Diploma in Marketing, she started with the company as a Graduate Trainee. With nearly 22 years service she has gained experience across all parts of the business which has stood her well since taking on the role.
Charles Hebdon
Charles Hebdon - General Manager, WCF Fuels North East

Following many years working as a Marine Surveyor (specialising in petroleum products) in and around the UK, Charles started with WCF Eastern in 1990 covering Lincolnshire and the East Riding of Yorkshire before moving to WCF North East in 1992 to further develop the North East business.
Gemma Hogg
Gemma Hogg - General Manager, WCF Fuels North West

Gemma has recently joined the business as General Manager at Fuels North West. She has been in the industry for a decade. Gemma has studied Business & Management from a young age and has experience in general management, business operations, sales and strategies.
She can think creatively and be interested in what motivates people. She can identify target markets and develop strategies to communicate with them.
In her spare time, she likes to travel to new places and spend time with family and friends.
Lynn Casson
Lynn Casson - General Manager, WCF Chandlers

Lynn has 25 years of experience working in the fuels industry, starting at WCF Fuels North West in 1994 as a Sales Administrator, later becoming Commercial Manager and then General Manager in 2013.
She recently made the move to Lincolnshire to take over as General Manager at WCF Chandlers where she is responsible for the day to day running of the business which has 8 depots, employs 64 members of staff and operates 32 tankers.
She loves spending time with her family and 4 border collies and spends most weekends competing at dog agility.
Allan Stobart
Steve Hindmarch- General Manager, Allan Stobart Lubricants & Fuels

Steve was promoted to General Manager in July 2020 having joined ASLF in October 2015 as Transport and Sales Manager. Prior to joining WCF, Steve spent 27 years working for Volvo Truck and Bus in Carlisle, acting as dealer manager from 2010. Steve is married to Jo and enjoys spending time on the golf course with his son Craig and walking in the Lakes with his daughter Beth. Steve is also a long-suffering Newcastle United supporter.
Kevin Smith-Dixon
Kevin Sharp-Dixon - General Manager (Commercial), WCF Pet & Equestrian

Started working for WCF on the 11th October 2004 as Retail Operations Manager based in Wigton. Three years later he became Product and Marketing Manager. He has been integral to the current evolution to our Pet & Equestrian store concept. More recently taking on the role of General Manager – Commercial.

Outside of work he is involved in the world of dogs, showing, breeding and judging at open and championship show level here and abroad.

Head Office Team

Mike Parker
Mike Parker, Health & Safety Manager

Mike joined in 1976 to work as Wages & Accounts Clerk for WB Anderson Fruit Merchants Ltd who had been acquired by WCF that year. His current role focuses on compliance in the areas of employment law and health & safety, but Mike firmly believes the job is not just about compliance, but encouraging a positive work environment where all managers and staff genuinely wanting to do their best for the company and want to do it safely by demonstrating a genuine commitment through their attitude and actions.
Pamela Murray
Pamela Murray, Financial Controller and Company Secretary

Pam joined the team at Brampton in May 2015 with 27 years of experience at Enesco, the UK’s largest manufacturer and distributor of giftware and collectables and where she qualified as a Chartered Management Accountant in 2001. Her new role as Group Financial Controller sets her new challenges with the freedom of getting involved in all of WCF’s business sectors.
Jane Gallagher
Jane Gallagher, Share Registrar and PA to the Directors

Jane joined WCF Ltd in 1987 just prior to when the company became privatised, where she worked for the retail part of the business. After 12 years she made a move to Head Office to work for the Managing Director and latterly adding Share Registrar duties to her role.
David Thompson
David Thompson, IT Manager

Our resident IT Manager who has officially been a WCF employee for nearly 16 years, however started his career with Border Colour in the early 90’s which was acquired by WCF in 2001. No matter what the IT issue is, David will never give up until he has found a solution. David and his wife Jackie have two girls Katie and Anna who say "although he comes across sensible and dapper the truth is daddy is just a big kid”. He is fond of the outdoors and loves to go walking with the family and their Springer Spaniel Maggie.
Daniel Sowerby
Daniel Sowerby, Estates and Facilities Manager

Daniel Joined WCF November 2016 as our Estates and Facilities Manager, Highly experienced Construction practitioner & Project/Programme Manager within the construction sectors, with over with 20+ year experience.

Daniel starting as a joiner/carpenter with a local construction company before he had a professional career change to Local authority within Building Control, where he obtaining a BSc Hons in Building Surveying at Northumbria University, he then became a Chartered Building Engineer.

Subsequently he worked at Sellafield and Iggesund Paperboard as the head of Estates and Facilities Management Department whilst also obtaining a full membership of British Institute of Facilities Management (CBIFM).

Any spare time is spent with his family.
Karen Kelso, Head of People and Culture

Karen joined our team in July 2019 to lead our People and Culture agenda. She has previously worked in both the financial services and pharmaceutical sectors in various senior HR roles, supporting executive teams to achieve their strategic plans through optimising the potential and capacity of their staff. Karen has a CIPD qualification in Human Resource Management and a CMI qualification in Leadership and Management.

In her spare time, Karen’s enjoys a night at the movies, socialising with friends and family, holidaying in Greece as well as all things chocolate orange related!

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