Former trip leader Charles Knowlton has become global general manager at youth travel specialist Topdeck Travel.

He has a 15-year career in the travel and touring sector, starting in 2004 as a trip leader, taking tours through national parks across the US.

In 2012 he relocated to London to become Topdeck’s business development manager.

He was promoted to international sales manager, and then became brand manager in 2013.

In 2016, he was appointed as general tour operations manager for North America, and later took on responsibility for Australia and New Zealand too.

Knowlton said: “I see tremendous potential for Topdeck. My goal is to lead the brand in a way that inspires, empowers and serves others within the organisation so that our culture thrives, and Topdeck flourishes.”

He will start his new role on June 10, and will relocate from his base in Santa Monica to Topdeck’s head office in London in July 2019.

Janine Salame, global managing director, said: “Charles has earned respect and credibility at all levels of the business, and across the globe within the North America, UK, and Australian teams.”