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Brian Madderson

Chairman of the PRA

Brian joined the PRA as Chairman in 2009 after more than 20 years as Managing Director of George Hammond PLC – a Top 50 indie. He drives the Association's wide-ranging policies through his representation of thousands of independent retailers to government and other key industry bodies. He regularly appears on TV with BBC, Sky and ITN all using his wide ranging industry knowledge as does both national and regional BBC radio channels.


Gordon Balmer 


Gordon has extensive experience in the fuel industry having worked for BP for 30 years. During this time he worked in fuel sales, strategic planning, project management, UK Fuel Card Manager and UK Country Manager where he was responsible for fuel cards, commercial fuel, automotive lubricants and fleet performance management.

On leaving BP he formed his own businesses and worked as a consultant on payments specialising in fuel cards.  Gordon has worked for the PRA since 2013 primarily as Commercial Manager where he was responsible for all marketing and commercial activities and represented the PRA in meetings with a number of Government Departments.

Away from work he enjoys being with family and friends, keeping fit, cycling, watching sport and gardening.


Steve Coombe

PRA Membership Manager

Steve has been involved in the petrol retailing sector for 23 years. He began as Forecourts Operations Manager for Greens Motors Ltd, a family run motor & fuel business in West Wales responsible for day to day operation of three sites (1 licensed & 2 dealer). 

During this time he was Chairman of the South Wales BP Forum as well as being Chairman for the PRA South Wales Committee. Steve then joined Big and was part of the launch of the unique web portal at its Milford Haven office in January 2004. He was responsible for the sales of the product to petrol stations, commercial distributors & commercial end users. 

In November 2007 the Big Oil Website was purchased by the PRA and Steve duly went with it as the main facilitator. Steve has been part of the membership recruitment within the RMI since 2009 but has mainly concentrated on PRA since January 2011. 

His current role has enabled him to promote the membership benefits of the PRA through the Regional Forums which he organises and he has also had a key role in facilitating the venture with Big Oil & Vianet launch this year.


Phil Monger

PRA Technical director

Phil's engineering background started in the motor industry where he completed his apprenticeship and qualified as a motor vehicle technician. During his time with Hadleys of Basingstoke, he was given the opportunity to develop the forecourt side of the business and developed a range of sites across Hampshire and Berkshire. He was actively involved as a member of the original Petroleum Retailers Association back in the seventies. 

In 1989, he joined the Petrol Retailers Association as a technical advisor to members and in 1997 was appointed as Technical Director, where he continues to serve today. He is a valued member of several technical committees at the Energy Institute, works closely with various Government Departments and represents the industry to several Government Agencies, such as the Health and Safety Executive, the Environment Agency and the National Measurement Office. At a local level, Phil liaises with the Petroleum Licensing Authorities.


Ray Blake

Technical manager

Ray began his close association with petrol filling stations on becoming a Petroleum Inspector employed by the Greater London Council in 1980. 26 years later he was appointed Head of the Petroleum Group of the London Fire Brigade (LFB). 

During the 35 years as an enforcer he approved, (in a few cases rejected), the arrangements for the development or redevelopment of many hundreds of petrol filling stations, some of which are recognised as incorporating the greatest number, and most complex control measures adopted anywhere in the world, to enable them to be located in central London, some being both under buildings and above underground railway tunnels. To achieve this Ray has been at the forefront whenever new petroleum related technology or systems have been introduced. 

For the first 26 years of his career, routine work as an inspector brought him into daily contact with the whole spectrum of operators of petrol filling stations from oil companies and supermarkets to sole traders, providing him with an insight into the workings of the vastly different management systems.

In his last nine years as the Head of Petroleum of the LFB, Ray has taken a mainly national role; implementing and managing ten Primary Authority Partnerships that influence compliance and safety at over 25% of the petrol filling stations in the UK, and result in an equalisation of requirements by enforcing authorities where the partners operate. He participated in numerous UK forums charged with ensuring the safe operation of petrol filling stations, culminating with, for the last two years his having a pivotal role in the review and consolidation of Petroleum Legislation, and subsequently through the Petroleum Enforcement Liaison Group running training events across the country to promote a smooth transition to the new legislative regime.

Away from work Ray and his wife live in on the borders of Kent/London, are keen sports fans including being long term season ticket holders at Charlton Athletic Football Club.

From the time when he picked up his first Dinky toy, Ray has had a passion for cars. He has owned, maintained, restored - but mainly driven a great number of classic cars and has a particular, but not exclusive, interest in Alfa Romeos. Ray jokes that as a dedicated Petrol Head, he was destined to become the Head of Petrol. He has now given up one "Head" with the intention of further enjoying the other.

Ray hopes and believes that he can use his knowledge and expertise to assist the members of the PRA in operating safe and profitable petrol stations for many years to come


Alexander Russell

director of strategy

The Car Wash Association is delighted to welcome Alexander Russell as part of our team helping to improve the car wash industry. Alexander has a wealth of experience in this sector, having spent 38 years in the car wash industry as a Director of IMO Car Wash Group Ltd.

Alexander is also a Consultant for Sotheby’s Europe and speaks seven languages. Away from work Alexander enjoys photography, politics, skiing, walking, cycling, tennis, travel, literature, history and family life.