Fareham Borough Council/Solent LEP Board Director

Register of Interest

Cllr Woodward's Register of Interest can be found here.


Councillor Seán Woodward has been the Chairman of the Partnership for Urban South Hampshire since its inception in 2003 and Leader of Fareham Borough Council since 1999.  He is in his 33rd year as a Councillor and also serves on Hampshire County Council where he is the Executive Member for Recreation and Heritage.

Seán was educated at the University of Portsmouth where he gained a B.Sc. (Honours) degree in Biology as well as attaining Chartered Biologist status.  He spent 25 years working in the pharmaceutical industry and is currently the Managing Director of Ferneham Health Limited, a healthcare company which he formed in 2007 and which is currently trading as LBhealthcare based in Whiteley.  The company specialises in Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation.

He led South Hampshire through PUSH to its current status as a growth area and was delighted to be invited by government to form the Solent Local Enterprise Partnership following a successful private/public partnership bid involving the support of 70 businesses, 11 local authorities and 4 universities. He believes strongly that the economic recovery will be private sector led and that the concept of a local private/public partnership will be able to help create the improvements in skills, jobs, infrastructure and affordable housing that is so necessary to secure the prosperity of the Solent area and to build on the successful work that is being carried out by PUSH.

Through his previous Executive role on Hampshire County Council Seán set in train and made all of the key decisions to implement the £100m Access to Fareham and Gosport roads programme which is one of the biggest road investment programmes in memory.  It is setting in place the infrastructure needed for the 6,000 home new community of Welborne as well as supporting the Solent Enterprise Zone at Solent Airport@Daedalus which will enable the creation of thousands of advanced engineering jobs in the aviation, aerospace and marine sectors.

Rachael Randall

(Panel Chair) HTP/Solent LEP Board Director

Register of Interest

Rachael Randall's Register of Interest can be found here.


Rachael is Principal and CEO of HTP Apprenticeship College Ltd which she established in the year 2000. Prior to that she was involved in Government funded training working for New Deal and a national apprenticeship provider. Her roots are also firmly based in the world of Hospitality, Tourism and Farming. She grew up on the Isle of Wight and has brought up 2 children and is married to Malcolm. She also owns Albert Cottage Hotel in East Cowes on the Island.

Paula Swain

Solent LEP Business Director

Register of Interest

Paula Swain's Register of Interest can be found here

LEP Roles

Business Director*


Private sector representative


Paula Swain is a Partner in national law firm Shoosmiths LLP, and heads the firm’s southernmost office located at the Solent Business Park.

Through her professional practice, Paula has access to a broad array of businesses operating in the Solent region, and a key part of her role as a Head of Office is to support and monitor the economy of the Solent region.  Paula is particularly interested in how the development of 5G technology will assist the Solent region, together with new ventures from the region’s universities, smart manufacturing, maritime, aerospace and defence sectors.

A commercial litigator in her professional life, Paula is a supporting adviser and advocate for her clients across a broad range of disputes, and is a contributing author to Westlaw UK Insights. Paula read law at the University of Southampton, works in Whiteley and lives in Poole.  She appreciates both the economic and lifestyle aspects of the Solent region. Paula is a passionate supporter for growth in the region.


*Independent Non-Executive Director as outlined in the Corporate Governance Code 2018

Brian Johnson

Solent LEP Business Director and Solent LEP Chair

Register of Interest

Brian Johnson's Register of Interest can be found here.

LEP Roles

Chair - The Chair Role Profile can be found here

SME Business Ambassador

Business Director


Private Sector Representative


Brian is the UK Business Development Director at BAE Systems Maritime and works in Portsmouth Naval Base. He brings a wealth of private sector experience to his role within the LEP Board, with over 20 years' experience in the Marine and Maritime sector at organisations such as Thales, Marconi and the aforementioned BAE Systems. Brian is also on the Board of the Society of Maritime Industries. Brian is the Solent LEP Chair and also represents and engages with the SME business community as our LEP Board SME Champion.


Solent LEP Business Director

Register of Interest

Jo Sawford's Register of Interest can be found here.

LEP roles

Board Director

Search, Employment and Remuneration Committee panel member


Jo Sawford is the Head of Payload Projects for Telecommunication Satellites within Airbus Defence & Space. She is accountable for the on-time, on-quality, on-cost delivery of the payload from Portsmouth.

Through her career, Jo has worked within the aerospace industry working within the aircraft and space perimeters. Having responsibility within the domains of commercial, contracts, sales, supply chain; now working within programme management. These roles have involved leading and working within transnational teams with a worldwide customer base in both military and civil markets.

In addition to this role, she also holds the post of Site Director. Jo has helped facilitate a positive improvement with the level of interaction between Airbus and the local community through activities such as Shaping Portsmouth, Pride@Portsmouth, “We can do it Awards” and also through extensive OUTREACH programmes including EBP South, Girls Network, UTC Portsmouth, Winchester Science Centre and local charities.

Jo passionately believes that in her position she has an opportunity to embrace change, encourage collaboration, and provide strategic direction for Airbus as a whole, as well as influencing the Company visibility in the Portsmouth area through support of local engagement. Jo’s work ethic is always to demonstrate commitment, support team-work, motivate a healthy working environment, as well as recognising potential growth and creativity of both individuals and teams.

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