The Wine and Spirit Trade Association has appointed its first head of communications.

The UK industry body said today (16 January) that Gavin Partington will take on the role overseeing its communications strategy as well as acting as its main media spokesperson.

Partington, a former political journalist for GMTV, is currently a director with Parys Communications and has previously worked for both the Lawn Tennis Association and Energis as director of communications and Brunswick Group as a consultant.

WSTA chief executive Jeremy Beadles said: "Gavin brings a wealth of experience with him and his skills will be invaluable to the WSTA and I look forward to working with him."

Partington added: "I am delighted to be working for the WSTA at a time when the industry is facing fresh scrutiny. The WSTA is leading the way in addressing issues of concern to the public and our members and I look forward to supporting that work."

Partington will assume the role from the beginning of next month.